How to Deal with Fire and Smoke Damage

Burning building

 When your home has had a fire whether large or small, you have a lot on your mind and a lot to deal with post-fire. Life after a fire is tough and getting your home cleaned up after is a huge challenge. If you want your life to get back to normal, you will need to focus on mitigating the fire damage and removing the odor and the damaged items.

Something that most people do not know is that there are a variety of different types of fire damage and subsequent smoke damage. They all must be treated differently and the damage from them must be addressed with the appropriate and fitting plan. Some of the main types of fire and smoke damage that can occur in your home are: dry or wet smoke, protein fire, fuel oil soot, fire extinguisher powder and water damage. Due to all of the different types of fire and smoke damage that can occur, it is important not to try to mitigate the damage yourself. You should look for a company that is experienced at dealing with fire damage, smoke damage and water damage and have them come in for a consultation.

They should take care to explore the areas of your home that have been directly affected by the fire as well as the immediate areas. They should carefully examine your flooring particularly if it is carpet because the ashes and soot may have become embedded in the carpet. They should also carefully check for water damage because they will need to be mitigated first to prevent mold from growing. It is critical that you take action immediately after the fire has been put out (i.e., the same day or next day if it happens at night) in order to get rid of the fire and smoke damage in your home.

Call Water Damage Zone today (877) 520-1923  your future bills may be a lot smaller, if you follow these simple tips. You can also visit our sister company for further information on restoration services at Best American Builders.

We specialize in the following services:

  • 24/7 Emergency Response, Water Extraction, Water Damage
  • Direct Billing to Insurance, Locally Owned and Operated
  • Water Cleanup, Water Dry outs, Visual Mold Inspections, Sewage Damage Cleanup
  • Sterilizing & Odor Removal, Licensed & Bonded #963976, Reputable Los Angeles based company
  • Image from depositphotos, ID 15892692
  • Shutterstock Sequence Number: US-041C159DA-1

 

Water Damage Zone, Inc.
Corporate Office
15115 Califa St. Ste. C
Van Nuys, CA 91411

Black Mold- Health Risks

There are several kinds and types of mold that can be divided into several categories and sub-categories. Black mold, also known as Stachybotrys chartarum, is one of the most common species. It is not only toxic, but also causes several problems related to skin and the respiratory system. However, not all mold that is black by appearance is Stachybotrys chartarum. Here are some of the symptoms you may experience if your home has black mold.

Respiratory Problems

The respiratory system is usually one of the first things that will be effected due to breathing in the area of the black mold. The toxic fumes are breathed in and then enter the respiratory system, which immediately leads to difficulty breathing. Major symptoms may include breathlessness, wheezing, coughing, swelling of the lungs, sore throat, bleeding in the lungs, runny nose, itchy nose and nose bleeds.
These symptoms may vary based on the age, and the immune system of the person.

Circulatory Problems

The irritation doesn’t stop at the respiratory system, encountering black mold can also effect the circulatory system if it’s absorbed through breathing or the skin. The toxins in the black mold can find their way into the bloodstream and cause complications such as, heart damage, blood clotting and external or internal hemorrhaging.
If you or someone you know has been in direct contact with black mold, see a doctor if they have any of the following symptoms: irregular heartbeat, heart inflammation, low blood pressure, vomiting of blood, bone marrow disruption and bleeding tendency.
The severity of the symptoms may vary from one person to another, but immediate care should be taken in order to eradicate the chances of further damage to other organs. To ensure safety contact a doctor immediately following the presence of any of the above symptoms in order to minimize damage. The person having these symptoms should be moved to a mold free area, in order for them to be safe from any more damage or difficulties.

 

Skin Problems

One of the several ways through which mold makes it into the human body is by getting absorbed into the skin. Skin can be highly damaged due to mold. Areas that can get sweaty, like armpits or creases in the skin, have a higher tendency to be effected by black mold.
Symptoms may include, crawling of the skin, dermatitis and jaundice.

 

Call Water Damage Zone today (877) 520-1923  your future bills may be a lot smaller, if you follow these simple tips. You can also visit our sister company for further information on restoration services at Best American Builders.

We specialize in the following services:

  • 24/7 Emergency Response, Water Extraction, Water Damage
  • Direct Billing to Insurance, Locally Owned and Operated
  • Water Cleanup, Water Dry outs, Visual Mold Inspections, Sewage Damage Cleanup
  • Sterilizing & Odor Removal, Licensed & Bonded #963976, Reputable Los Angeles based company
  • Image from depositphotos, ID 15892692
  • Shutterstock Sequence Number: US-041C159DA-1

 

Water Damage Zone, Inc.
Corporate Office
15115 Califa St. Ste. C
Van Nuys, CA 91411

Help, I Have a Toilet that Backed Up

One of the worst experiences that a homeowner can have is to come home after a long day at work and discover that a toilet has overflowed due to a backed up sewer line.  It can be incredibly disheartening and just gross to have to deal with.  When you run into this issue, it is best to just have it cleaned as soon as possible.

Every kind of water damage can degrade the quality of the home that experiences damage.  Wood becomes weakened.  Carpets are destroyed, and you can see the growth of mold in the area increased.  The complication from dealing with sewer water is that it is highly unsanitary, and it creates very unique issues that have to be accounted for.

 

Clogs

One of the main reasons toilets overflows occur is through clogs.  In order to have a properly working septic system, read carefully what can be flushed and what can’t.  Some toilet papers, body hair among other things can contribute to the improper ability of the water to flow normally.  Sanitary bleach wipes can become caught in the lines, and if enough are flushed, you have a real issue on your hands.  You won’t notice this at first, but eventually, there will be a sewage bomb ready to go off.

 

The first gurgling sounds of a toilet can be shocking as you try to figure out what just happened.  In these early moments, water is moving out of the bowl and as water tends to do, it finds the lowest place to settle.  If you are fortunate, this occurs in an unfinished basement, but sometimes this can occur in an upper floor bathroom as well.

 

 Damages

There are many issues that occur from having a toilet back up with the primary being the condition of the water.  In most cases, this water, called blackwater, is already rich with sewage.  It is incredibly unsanitary and foul to deal with.  These back-ups can also lead to permanent damage to your home through rust, odor and insects.  Mold grows freely in this kind of water damage, and these molds can grow in drywall, wood, wallpaper, etc.  Any location that has been affected is a candidate for mold growth.  Floor covers can be ruined, and you’ll have to remove carpets and rugs contaminated.  Finally, appliances can be ruined, and there is a risk of electrical and fire hazards as well.

wrecked home

Your best option in dealing with a toilet back-up is to contact a professional restoration service as soon as possible.  Many certified restoration companies will respond in a professional and rapid manner with all necessary equipment to combat and bring your home back.  It is highly unadvisable to tackle this issue on your one as this issues from this kind of water damage cannot only damage your home, but they can have serious health impacts for you and your family.  Contacting a water damage restoration service allows you to have the job done right the first time.  Toilet back-ups are already unpleasant to experience without the stress of cleanup on you.

 

Call Water Damage Zone today (877) 520-1923  your future bills may be a lot smaller, if you follow these simple tips. You can also visit our sister company for further information on restoration services at Best American Builders.

We specialize in the following services:

  • 24/7 Emergency Response, Water Extraction, Water Damage
  • Direct Billing to Insurance, Locally Owned and Operated
  • Water Cleanup, Water Dry outs, Visual Mold Inspections, Sewage Damage Cleanup
  • Sterilizing & Odor Removal, Licensed & Bonded #963976, Reputable Los Angeles based company
  • Image from depositphotos, ID 15892692
  • Shutterstock Sequence Number: US-041C159DA-1

Water Damage Zone, Inc.

Corporate Office

15115 Califa St. Ste. C

Van Nuys, CA 91411

Kitchen Sponges a Home for Mold?

Sponges are great for cleaning your dishes, but they’re also the perfect material for mold to grow in. Dirty sponges can even lead to food poisoning if they have leftover pathogens from food inside of them. The best way to avoid this situation is to keep your sponges clean and dry when you’re not using them.

Cleaning Your Sponges

There are many ways to clean your sponges but sometimes the best thing to do is just replace them. If your sponges just need a little clean up, follow one of these tips:

  • Soak your sponges in a mixture of bleach and water for about a minute

  • Run them through the dishwasher for a full cycle including a heated dry

  • Heat your sponges in the microwave for a minute

Dehidrated sponge 2

Don’t Use Sponges for This

Sponges are good for cleaning up plenty of messes however there are certain types that should be avoided. By using them on certain spills you can cause mold to grow inside of your sponge. Sometimes, sponges aren’t the best option. The following messes should be cleaned with paper towels or another method where you can throw out your cleaning materials:

  • Cleaning up meat juices after preparing meals
  • Washing and disinfecting counter tops

  • Scrubbing walls or the inside of the refrigerator

 

 

Keep Sponges in a Dry Spot

After you wring out your sponge, it is important to put it somewhere that it will stay dry. By allowing your sponge to stay wet, you encourage the growth of mold and other bacteria that can endanger your health. Don’t ever put sponges under the sink or in a container that is closed. Always let them dry out in a bright, well-ventilated area.

Replace Often

Sponges should be replaced often. Don’t keep a sponge for longer than a week or two if you use it regularly. It is important to let your sponges dry out between uses and clean them if they have been used on a lot of dirty dishes. By staying on top of the cleanliness of your sponges, you will prevent health problems for you and your family.

Call Water Damage Zone today (877) 520-1923  your future bills may be a lot smaller, if you follow these simple tips. You can also visit our sister company for further information on restoration services at Best American Builders.

We specialize in the following services:

  • 24/7 Emergency Response, Water Extraction, Water Damage
  • Direct Billing to Insurance, Locally Owned and Operated
  • Water Cleanup, Water Dry outs, Visual Mold Inspections, Sewage Damage Cleanup
  • Sterilizing & Odor Removal, Licensed & Bonded #963976, Reputable Los Angeles based company
  • Image from depositphotos, ID 15892692
  • Shutterstock Sequence Number: US-041C159DA-1

Water Damage Zone, Inc.

Corporate Office

15115 Califa St. Ste. C

Van Nuys, CA 91411

Health Issues With Mold

Mold is something that people live with on a daily basis.  It can be found in many different environments, and it is very pervasive.  The effects on mold can be different for many people as it can be a minor irritance to something more serious.  It is important to know your molds to see if there needs to be a rapid response and cleanup.

Dramatic fungal landscape on a rotting lemon. Penicillium species.

The first question to ask is, “What is mold?”  They are fungi, and there can be up to half a million different varieties.  They grow in warm, damp and humid conditions.  Molds can also grow where there is detrious materials that can feed mold growth.  Mold reproduction is done through creation of spores which can be carried on the wind or circulated air in a house.  Molds can be very hardy as they can survive dry periods and then grow once the conditions are optimal.

Some of the most common molds are Cladosporium, which is olive green, brown or black in color.  There is also Penicillium which can be used as an antibiotic, but also in the creation of cheeses.  Alternaria is a third kind of fungi which tends to be represented through allergies such as hayfever. Finally, Aspergillus is a mold that can contaminate starchy foods such as breads and potatoes.  While these are four examples, there are thousands of possible molds that can be present in your home.

We live with mold on a daily basis.  However, sometimes people can develop allergic reactions to their presence.  For sensitive people, symptoms such as nasal stuffiness, eye irritation, wheezing and forms of skin irritation can occur.  These can be simple, and they can be dealt with using antihistamines.  Sometimes there is a more serious reaction that can occur.  These severe reactions can be seen in hay fever and shortness of breath.  In extreme cases, mold infections can occur in the lungs.

This potential for serious infection presents the potential of indoor molds for being responsible for respiratory tract symptoms, cough, wheezing, but also asthma in sensitive people.  Sometimes molds can create pneumonia in people with extreme sensitivity.  The risks in children and the elderly can be very susceptible to these effects.

Mold is something that we live with on a daily basis, and it affects each of us differently.  If you find that you have a potential mold issue in your home, you would be well served to contact a certified mold repudiation service for a home assessment.  If mold issues are addressed, then you can begin to enjoy your home.

Call Water Damage Zone today (877) 520.1923  your future bills may be a lot smaller, if you follow these simple tips. You can also visit our sister company for further information on restoration services at Best American Builders.

We specialize in the following services:

  • 24/7 Emergency Response, Water Extraction, Water Damage
  • Direct Billing to Insurance, Locally Owned and Operated
  • Water Cleanup, Water Dry outs, Visual Mold Inspections, Sewage Damage Cleanup
  • Sterilizing & Odor Removal, Licensed & Bonded #963976, Reputable Los Angeles based company
  • Image from depositphotos, ID 15892692
  • Shutterstock Sequence Number: US-041C159DA-1

Water Damage Zone, Inc.

Corporate Office

15115 Califa St. Ste. C

Van Nuys, CA 91411

 

Removing and Preventing Carpet Mold

Moldy carpets are smelly and unsightly. Not only that but it’s extremely hard to completely remove mold from carpets. Removing moisture from carpeting is just the beginning of removing any mold that has grown on it. It has been found true that carpets with dirt in them are far more likely to have mold growth. The following are some tips and precautions for preventing and eliminating mold growth in your carpets.

Humidity and Temperature

One of the best things you can do to prevent mold growth in your carpets is to keep the humidity in your home low as well as the temperature. By doing this you are creating an environment that is unfavorable for mold growth. You can reduce your home’s humidity by installing a dehumidifier in the room that is affected. By keeping your thermostat low, you will also prevent the temperatures in your home from being too high and encouraging the growth of mold.

Clean Your Carpet

When you spill something on the carpet, clean it up. Doing this as well as vacuuming on a weekly basis will ensure that the carpets in the home remain clean. Clean carpets don’t grow mold as easily as carpets that have dirt and spills on them. By maintaining the cleanliness of your home you also prevent mold from growing in unnoticeable places.

Organic Isn’t the Answer

There is a lot of talk in the news about how much healthier organic products are for us. While this may be true of foods, it is certainly not true of carpeting. Organic carpet made out of materials such as wool, houses mold much easier than a synthetic carpet. This is because mold can actively break down organic compounds in things like wool and use them for food. In order to best protect your carpets from mold make sure they are made from synthetic materials.

Have you ever had mold in your home’s carpet? What did you do to get rid of it?

Call Water Damage Zone today (877) 520.1923  your future bills may be a lot smaller, if you follow these simple tips. You can also visit our sister company for further information on restoration services at Best American Builders.

We specialize in the following services:

  • 24/7 Emergency Response, Water Extraction, Water Damage
  • Direct Billing to Insurance, Locally Owned and Operated
  • Water Cleanup, Water Dry outs, Visual Mold Inspections, Sewage Damage Cleanup
  • Sterilizing & Odor Removal, Licensed & Bonded #963976, Reputable Los Angeles based company
  • Image from depositphotos, ID 15892692
  • Shutterstock Sequence Number: US-041C159DA-1

Water Damage Zone, Inc.

Corporate Office

15115 Califa St. Ste. C

Van Nuys, CA 91411

Top Five Places for Mold in Your Home…..

Mold is an eukaryotic micro-organism that decomposes dead organic material, and it can find its way into your home.  Once it is there, it can be a real hazard to yours and your family’s health.  Clean-up can be easy depending on the location of the mold, but in order to be safe and complete, it is best to usually call in a certified restoration service that can take care of your mold issue.

Where are the prime spots for mold in my home?  Mold has a tendency to commonly grow in five areas in your home.  You can notice it by the growth which can be black, blue or green and gives off a mildew smell.  If you notice any of these signs, assess the situation and call restoration immediately.

Mold can grow just about anywhere, but here are the top five areas:

1. Basement

Mold likes to be in an area of the home that is cool, damp and can have available moisture.  Your basement fulfills all these requirements as condensation from a furnace/AC provides the necessary dampness, humidity and can be stagnant in terms of air flow.  If your foundation has cracks, water can seep in and further raise the potential for mold growth.  Standing water at anytime in the basement raises the potential for mold to grow.

water-damage-repair62

2. Bathrooms and Showers

Like the basement, bathrooms and showers are great locations for mold due to the presence of water and humidity.  Due to the uses of the bathroom, it is hard to lower humidity levels, which leads to mold growth and a persistent mildew smell.  Bathrooms are typically poorly ventilated so humidity will remain adding to the potential of mold.

3. Attics

The major issue with attics and mold stem from improper ventilation and issues with insulation.  What can occur is that as moisture rises in the home, it becomes trapped in the attic and this becomes the perfect breeding ground for mold.  Also, vents from the kitchen, bathroom, dryer and other home appliances continuously can force moist air into the attic with no way to release the moisture.

molzd

4. HVAC systems

If you have a furnace or air conditioning in your home, then chances are you have an HVAC system.  These are great places for mold to begin in that they are intricate networks of ducts that are difficult to clean and can accumulate dead material like dust, hair which can feed mold growth.  If there is mold in your HVAC, you will notice a musty smell when your furnace and AC is in use.  HVAC systems can be tricky to clean, so if you suspect HVAC mold, don’t use the system and call an inspector to verify.

5. Kitchens

The kitchen offers a great place for mold to grow.  You should check your appliances regularly as mold will grow under the sink, but it will also grow behind the refrigerator, particularly if yours leaks water.  A great way to prevent any water leak is to make sure that your refrigerator is defrosted regularly.  Other places to hide can include dishwashers, areas where dishes air dry, and windows into the kitchen that may leak.

Mold is present in every home, but it can be managed.  If you keep these high risk areas clean and free of water and dead organic materials then you should be able to limit the ability of mold to grow in your home.

Mold Damage

Mold Damage

Call Water Damage Zone today (877) 520-1923  your future bills may be a lot smaller, if you follow these simple tips. You can also visit our sister company for further information on restoration services at Best American Builders.

We specialize in the following services:

  • 24/7 Emergency Response, Water Extraction, Water Damage
  • Direct Billing to Insurance, Locally Owned and Operated
  • Water Cleanup, Water Dry outs, Visual Mold Inspections, Sewage Damage Cleanup
  • Sterilizing & Odor Removal, Licensed & Bonded #963976, Reputable Los Angeles based company
  • Image from depositphotos, ID 15892692
  • Shutterstock Sequence Number: US-041C159DA-1

Water Damage Zone, Inc.
Corporate Office
15115 Califa St. Ste. C
Van Nuys, CA 91411