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How to Fix a Leaking Water Heater

2/25/2020 (Permalink)

Closeup of a rusty and leaking water heater Fixing a leaking water heater is a DIY-friendly project that can save you money

How to Fix a Leaking Water Heater

Waking up to a broken water heater can be a nasty surprise, especially when it happens in the middle of a busy morning. Usually, problems start when someone does a lousy job installing the hot tank, resulting in a premature leak. That, combined with a bad pressure release valve, are the leading causes of hot cylinder issues in Olympia, WA.
Things you’ll need to fix a leaking water heater:

  • Socket wrench
  • Hose
  • Teflon tape

Disconnect the Power Supply

Safety comes first in every DIY project. In this case, turn off the electricity supply coming to the tank. It is as easy as finding the switch labeled “tank” on the main circuit breaker and flipping it to off position. That mitigates the risk of electric shock, especially when working on a failed water heater.
The same applies to gas-powered tanks. You have to find the valve that kills the gas supply and turn it off.

Drain Some Water

Next, you will need to drain the failed water tank partially. To do so, turn off the water supply, open a faucet to release some pressure, then turn on the drain valve. Depending on the tank size, you might have to empty the bucket three to four times before reaching the desired ¾ mark. This procedure will release some pressure from the tank, making it safe for this little project.

Remove the Valve

The culprit in a leaking water heater is typically a faulty valve. Use a wrench to loosen the old fitting and replace it with a new one. However, don’t forget to use Teflon tape on the threads before screwing it in place. Finally, please turn on the cold water supply and power to test it.
Fixing a leaking water heater is a DIY-friendly project that can save you money. Just remember to do regular maintenance to avoid unpleasant situations in the future.

4 Ways to Ensure Fire Preparedness in the Home

2/25/2020 (Permalink)

Photoelectric smoke detector Install smoke detectors in your home

Four Things You Can Do To Protect Your Home and Family

Too often, people need to rely on the work of a fire restoration company in Yelm, WA, because they fail to take the necessary precautions in their home. Fire preparation should not be optional. Sure, no one expects to have a fire, but there are at least four inexpensive things you can do to protect your home and family.

  1. Install smoke detectors and extinguishers
  2. Prepare emergency escape routes
  3. Practice regularly
  4. Prepare emergency contacts

Install Smoke Detectors and Extinguishers

The first thing you should do to protect yourself and your family from a possible home fire is to install smoke detectors and extinguishers. Make sure that you install enough of each. You should have at least one extinguisher on each floor and in high-risk areas. Smoke detectors should also be in high-risk spaces and in bedrooms as well as every level of the home.

Prepare Emergency Escape Routes

The next objective for fire preparation is to prepare emergency escape routes. You should have a minimum of two exits from every room in your house. Also, make sure that paths are clear of any clutter, ensuring a safe exit. Remember, during a fire, there will be low visibility.

Practice Regularly

While planning escape routes is a significant first step toward fire safety, those routes mean nothing without adequate practice. Make sure that everyone in the family practices at least twice per year. However, more often is likely better.

Prepare Emergency Contacts

Last, make sure that you have a list of emergency contacts prepared for every family member. Always make sure that everyone knows how to call 911 and report an emergency. It may sound obvious, but many people freeze during high-stress situations, which can delay emergency responders.
Don't let the aftermath of a house fire be the first time your family talks about fire preparation. Install the appropriate safety equipment and prepare for possible disasters. Contact a fire mitigation company if you have any questions about fire safety.

The Water Damage Categories and What You Should Know

1/30/2020 (Permalink)

Background of blue water and on the middle a sign that says water categories Water categories

Three Water Categories

When looking like a water pipe repair at your Lacey, WA, business a water damage restoration professional will often also look at what category the flood water falls into. As there are three categories of water, knowing what type of water was in the broken pipe can help them determine the best method for water removal, as well as what safety steps to follow. The three water categories are

1. Clean Water

One of the easiest types of flooding to clean up, and the most likely to come from a broken pipe is clean water. This is also called water category one. This is water that hasn’t been used for anything and is safe to drink and cook with. In a business facility it is the water often hooked to sinks either in the bathroom or break room.

2. Grey Water

Grey water is called category two water. this is water that has been contaminated by non-harmful substances such as soap or other non toxic cleaners, or food waste. A water pipe repair that falls under this category might be related to a dish disposal, dish washer, washing machine, or utility sink of some kind.

3. Black Water

Category three is called black water and is often associated with water that comes from a flooded sewer main or toilet. This water has been contaminated with various sewage materials and requires special gear to safely clean up. Professionals working with this type of water will often wear gloves, masks, boots, and coveralls. After the black water has been removed the affected area should also be sanitized with special cleaners to ensure it is free of contaminants.
When it comes to a water pipe repair it’s important to know what type of water was in the pipe. Clean water should be fairly easy to clean up while black water will require special safety gear and the area to be sanitized. Grey water falls somewhere between the two.

How to Get Rid of Mold in Your Air Conditioning System

1/20/2020 (Permalink)

Dust out from Air Duct Pay attention to your air ducts

No business owner in Yelm, WA, wants to discover mold in his or her workplace. This issue would cause significant concern for you, your employees and anyone who came into the building. Black mold and other fungi can invade your office and thrive in basements and attics as well as under sinks and near appliances. It's also common for the problem to show up in the HVAC system. It's important to identify mold quickly and eliminate it.

Signs That Mold Is in Your AC

It's not always easy to spot mold in the ductwork of your air conditioning system. Sometimes, you'll have to pay attention to other clues coming from the air ducts. 

Call the Pros

If you suspect there is black mold or any other type of fungal growth in your HVAC system, call a professional mold removal team right away. The professionals have experience identifying whether there is mold growth. They also have the right equipment and tools to safely remove the materials.

Steps You Can Take

Before mold removal crews arrive to inspect your HVAC system and clean ducts, you can help with the removal process and stop the spread of mold. First, you should look at the insulation surrounding the ducts. If you spot any mold here, you'll need to replace the insulation. Also, make sure regularly replace air conditioner filters. This will help maintain proper airflow and hinder the accumulation of dust. These factors will discourage fungal growth. It is also a good idea to clean the air conditioner ducts at least once a year.
To keep black mold away from your office, follow these steps and guidelines. Keep an eye out for mold and the concerning signs that it has spread to your HVAC system.

How Commercial Insurance Clients Benefit From a Storm Restoration Company

1/20/2020 (Permalink)

Hole on a roof of a commercial building Commercial damage in Tenino, WA

Your Tenino, WA, clients deserve the best assistance available, especially after their commercial locations are hit by a storm or similar natural disaster. You want to make sure you choose the most capable storm restoration company around. SERVPRO combines the friendliness and personal touch of a local business with the numerous advantages of a large corporation to best serve the needs of your clients.

Expertise from Specialists

Businesses deserve the most knowledgeable professionals when dealing with water-based destruction. SERVPRO employs trained and qualified water damage specialists who can address any incident created by a storm or related to it.

  • Strong winds and tornadoes
  • Snowstorms
  • Tides
  • Wildfires started by lightning
  • Hurricanes
  • Floods

No matter the situation the clients face, these crews have seen and worked through it. A larger company provides a team of experienced employees to best satisfy business owners and their insurance agents.

Fast Disaster Response

All disasters require a quick response. If storm restoration does not deal with wind or flood damage immediately, it can lead to harmful to further deterioration of the building, mold growth, delayed recovery and reopening and more. All these effects can cost you and your clients too much money. SERVPRO has franchises throughout the United States and Canada and provides storm response services 24/7. These features ensure the businesses receive quick cleaning and remediation.

Strong Number of Resources

Storms can leave behind devastating damage to commercial locations. Whether they operate a large store or a small business, your customers will need the best equipment available to recover from wind, heavy rain, and more. SERVPRO is disaster recovery company that utilizes sophisticated cleaning and repair techniques, as well as the most advanced equipment in the market. You and your clients can have access to these disaster response resources at affordable prices.
The quality of a storm restoration service is crucial, as it helps the effectiveness and affordability of your client's recovery. Between years of experience, fast response and wide access to resources, SERVPRO is the trusted choice for businesses and insurance providers like yourself.

How To Limit Flood Damage In a Commercial Building

1/4/2020 (Permalink)

Garden flowers in rain Landscaping may help reduce the severity of flooding to your commercial property in Olympia,WA

Flooding may seem inevitable, but there are many ways to limit flood damage. From inspections to strategic landscaping to gathering emergency equipment to keep out flood waters, here are several steps you can take to limit damage in a commercial property in Olympia,WA.

Flood Proof the Building

Start with a thorough inspection to make sure the building is watertight. This inspection should extend to

  • Doors and other openings
  • Drainage systems
  • Flood panels
  • Floor slab
  • Windows
  • Walls
  • Roof

Regular inspections can identify breaches or damage that may become a source of leaks or flood damage. This inspection may also lead to recommendations for storm shutters or other preventative features.

Strategically Design Landscaping

Landscaping decisions may help to reduce the severity of flooding. Make sure that the grade of the soil slopes away from the foundation of a building. Seek expert advice on how to use plants or trees to ground soil, prevent erosion, and break up the flow of flood water.

Gather Flood Supplies

It is a good idea to keep a variety of flood prevention supplies on hand. These may include burlap bags, sand, and shovels for making sandbags or reusable alternatives to sandbags such as

  • Collapsible reinforced fences
  • Water-filled cofferdams or tubes
  • Materials designed to absorb water

    Alternative designs may be more expensive than sandbag materials, but these methods may also be more environmentally-friendly, faster to fill or deploy, and more cost-effective over time. Effective use of sandbags or alternatives can help to keep water out of a commercial property.

All of these measures can limit the amount of flood damage or storm damage sustained by a commercial building in Olympia, WA. Property on a flood plain should be insured through the National Flood Insurance Program or a private flood insurer. If flood waters damage the property, contact a commercial storm and water damage cleanup and restoration service.

3 Ways a Fire Can Lead To Water Damage

12/30/2019 (Permalink)

Firefighters putting out a fire in a building. Police are present in the scene Fire damage in Olympia, PA

3 Ways a Fire Can Lead To Water Damage

Experiencing fire damage at your Olympia, WA, business can have some unanticipated effects. For example, a fire can also lead to water damage. Fortunately, many fire services have the ability to handle water caused damage as well. But how did a fire lead to water problems in the first place? Here are three possible ways.

1. Fire Hose

In many cases water problems can start with fire suppression efforts. Depending on the hydrant and hose type, a fire suppression hose can pump out somewhere between 300 and 800 gallons in a minute. That much water can end up flooding the affected area of the property. Fortunately, many restoration services are already aware that they may have to deal with flooding from fire suppression efforts as well, and can come prepared.

2. Overhead Sprinklers

Another way fire damage can lead to possible flooding is from an overhead sprinkler system. While these systems don’t put out as much water as a fire hose, the water can still pool in some areas and cause damage. Many companies choose to use a chemical suppression system instead of a water based one for this reason.

3. Weakened Roof

In the event the fire weakens the roof of the business property, it’s possible for leaks to occur. This can lead to water problems the next time it rains. This is why a restoration service will often do a damage assessment before they begin any repairs. This allows them to find any problems, including those with the roof, that way areas that may leak can be protected until repairs can be made.
There are several ways fire damage can lead to water damage. Water can get in from a damaged roof, a fire hose can cause flooding, and overhead sprinkler systems may leave puddles of water as well. Fortunately, a fire restoration service should be able to handle any necessary repairs from these issues.

Can Employees Return To Work During Restoration?

12/21/2019 (Permalink)

A professional technician extracting water with a vacuum to a carpet in an office Water removal in a Lacey, WA office

3 Main Steps of The Restoration Process

While you may want to get back to work right away after a storm, that is not always possible. Flood damage can lead to a buildup of black water in your Lacey, WA, commercial building. This type of water contains bacteria that can be dangerous for humans. It is also a breeding ground for mold growth.
Thankfully, storm cleanup specialists can repair the building once the rain has stopped. Best of all, employees do not have to sit at home the entire time. Below are the three main steps of the restoration process.

Water Removal

Flood damage repair specialists will first remove any standing water from the property. Only professionals who are familiar with toxic water should enter the premises at this time. They will know how to eliminate the black water safely and what equipment they will need.

Disinfection and Demolition

The next step in the flood cleanup process is disinfecting or destroying any contaminated materials. The restoration experts will tell you what items can be saved, and which should be thrown out. Some porous items, including carpeting and drywall, may need to be discarded. Others can be salvaged but must be thoroughly cleaned before you can use them again.

Rebuild

Once the hazardous materials have been cleaned or removed, you can start to rebuild. Professionals can install new walls and carpeting, and they can repair items that were affected by storm damage.
Employees can come back to the office and resume working at this time. To ensure that they are safe, you may want to install an air filtration device. This should eliminate any lingering toxins in the air.
Workers should stay out of the office while the black water is drained and the building is disinfected. While this may cost you and your employees money, it will also keep them safe. Once the contaminated items have been cleaned or removed, workers can return to the premises.

Prevent Secondary Water Damage

12/9/2019 (Permalink)

Black mold damage on a white wall Secondary damage such as mold in Tenino,WA

Any water in your Tenino, WA, home where it shouldn’t be can quickly turn into a big problem. Along with the initial surface damage, not properly drying and cleaning affected areas can turn into secondary damage, which can include the growth of black mold.

Types of Secondary Damage

As vital as water is to humans, it can have the opposite effects on a home. If water from a leak or burst pipe goes unchecked, additional issues can quickly arise.

Mold – As a living organism, mold loves moisture. When there are high humidity and nourishment from the organic materials that are part of your home, it can begin to form within 24 hours and start to spread with 72 hours. Although black mold doesn’t grow as quickly, if it isn’t discovered quickly, it can lead to a long-term problem.

Electrical Issues – If the leak is severe, water can work its way up the wall and potentially enter electrical sockets, potentially causing internal issues that may not be noticed until further down the road.

Corrosion – Even a small amount of moisture can begin to rust metal materials in the home, such as pipes and studs. This often hidden damage can eventually affect the house’s structural integrity.
Wood and Material Damage – This is very similar to corrosion, except it applies to organic material such as the wooden structures of your property. Again, if not treated, this can lead to major structural issues.

Material Damage – Flooring, carpet, drywall and wood are not immune to the effects of water damage. If they are not dried out properly, wood will begin to rot, floors will start to buckle and walls will become a welcoming locale for mold.

Proper Remediation
Whenever water damage requires more than just a towel to clean up a little mess, your best bet is to call a water damage remediation expert. They will have the tools to find hidden damage, as well as the expertise to get your home dry. If black mold or other secondary damage has already taken hold, an expert will be able to eliminate the problem.

Take Quick Action During a Gas Leak

12/4/2019 (Permalink)

Closeup shot of blue fire from domestic kitchen stove. The majority of homes are heated with natural gas, including those in Yelm, WA

Take Quick Action During a Gas Leak

The majority of homes are heated with natural gas, including those in Yelm, WA. This cost-effective energy source is reliable and regularly monitored to ensure it is safe. Although a gas explosion is rare, early detection of a leak is imperative to avoid a gas fire or other incident.

How to Detect a Leak

The undeniable odor, similar to rotting eggs, is a sure sign that there may be a gas leak. Along with its distinctive smell, other signs of a leak may include:

  • Flame is yellow instead of blue.
  • Pilot light consistently goes out.
  • Appliances show signs being burned.
  • Hissing or blowing sound is emitting from appliances.

Steps for Dealing with a Leak

If you think you may have a leak, quick action is necessary to reduce the chances of a gas fire or personal injury. First, the gas supply to your home needs to be turned off, which usually means a simple rotation of a valve at the gas meter. Second, open windows and doors to air out your home. Be sure to avoid using an electric appliances, lighting matches or using anything that could create a spark. Next, call your gas company or professional who can better access the situation and find the source of the leak.

Avoiding Leaks

The old saying that prevention is key rings true when it comes to natural gas. The most common culprit is faulty or improperly installed equipment. Always ensure new appliances are installed by a certified expert. After installation, inspect appliances regularly for signs of extensive wear and tear. Although it is an investment, if your appliances are old, it may be time to consider getting new ones to reduce the chances of an incident.
If a gas fire does happen, get out of the home and call 911. Safety should always take precedence over potential damage to home. After everyone is safe, count on the experts Faster to any size disaster.