Fire Damage Preparation Steps

Firemen at Work

In the United States, nearly 3,000 people die and 13,000 are injured in home fires every year.  The costs of the homes and items lost are estimated to be $7.3 billion each year.  The amazing piece of this information is that people need not worry about home fires if they prepare the right way.  You can prevent losing a loved one or cherished possessions if you prepare for fire in the home the same way.

In the time before a fire, it is best to be proactive.  Learn where the local Fire Department is in relation to your home.  In many cases, Fire Department officials will perform a walk through of your home in order to see where the risks might be, and they will give solutions on how to better prepare in the event of a fire.

Preparation

It is easy to prepare your home.  Work with your family and discover the best routes to exit the home, or fire escapes in the home.  You should have a minimum of two ways to get out of each room.  Make sure windows are not stuck, and they can be opened or removed quickly and easily.  It is important to teach children that firefighters in full gear are not to be feared, but they should be approached in the event of a fire.

Smoke alarms are also crucial in home preparation.  Dual smoke alarms are best as they detect both ionization and photoelectric smoke.  Test the batteries monthly, and place them on every level of the home, especially in sleeping areas.  Never disable a smoke alarm as this places your home and loved ones in jeopardy.

Removal

Furthermore, the removal of combustibles and securing of fuel sources can be vital in the event of a fire.  Try to prevent the fire from gaining fuel and intensity.  Keeping these items away from flames will make the fire more manageable and lessen the damage.  As a fire moves through your home, close doors and windows in order to prevent fire access to oxygen.  As a fire burns it will exhaust all available oxygen in a room and smother itself.  Closing doors and windows keeps oxygen from getting to the fire.  One way to do this most effectively is to use a water and smoke sealant to create a barrier.  Many water barriers are fire resistant for four hours which during a fire can be the entire lifespan of the blaze.  Water barriers can help limit the spread of fires in the home and add to the smothering process.

Get out

The best thing that you can do in a fire is simply get out of the building as fast and calmly as you can.  Keep calm in the event of a fire, and find a cloth to cover your nose and mouth.  This helps to filter the air and keeps smoke/soot out of your lungs.  The key to surviving is to know your exits through consistent practice.  Get low to the ground, under the smoke and crawl your way to the exit.  Once you are out of the building, go to your meeting area and call for help.

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

Cons to Delaying Mold Removal

If you find that you have mold present in your home, it is in your best interest to remove it as soon as possible.  There are many different reasons from the integrity of the home to the health risks.  It is a serious issue that demands a serious response from you.

There are multiple issues with allowing mold to remain in your home.  These range from wall discoloring to ceiling stains to increases in allergens present in the home.  By looking at several of the issues, you can judge for yourself the necessity of removing the mold.

First and foremost, the major issues with mold come from the adverse effects that it can have on your home.  Remember that in most cases, mold forms from unchecked or unknown moisture being present that feeds a mold colony.  Because of this it is imperative that before you make any restorations in your home that you identify the cause of the leaks and fix them immediately.  Only in this way will you prevent the mold from returning and ruining all the hard work and money that went into the repairs.  It is important to get it right the first time.

When you are ready to begin repairs, it is important that one of the biggest issues with mold is the combination that it has with moisture in the home.  Water can create a great deal of damage, so you will be repairing mold but also water damage.  Once cleanup is ready to begin, then it is necessary to begin removing items that were either contaminated by mold or soaked with water.  This is done to prevent future mold growth.

The issues that mold can create in homes include discoloration or stains on the walls, cracked/peeling paint, loosening drywall, ceiling stains and it can warp the wood in the home.  If your home has plaster, then this can begin to crumble as well.  It is necessary that once the source of the moisture has been dealt with then repairs can begin.  In many cases, you will want to check the integrity of the area affected by the water or mold.  If you are fortunate, then there may only be a need for some fresh paint after the area has been thoroughly cleaned.  Drywall, for instance can become very similar to mush when wet, so these sections may need to be replaced, then you can finish with paint.

Work in bathrooms can be a little trickier as these areas of the house has a constant moisture present from use.  Here you need to make sure that the tubs and sinks are caulked properly to prevent water seepage.  Once this is done and the walls are verified for durability, then new paint or tile can be applied to give the room new life.  If you choose paint over tile, it is recommended that a paint resistant to moisture be applied.

Mold can also affect the air qualities in a home.  Molds reproduce by spores, so it is important to make sure that the HVAC system of your home is cleaned, but also supported by a fresh air filter every 2-3 months.  If you find that you are constantly running your AC or heat, you may wish to change sooner.  If you have pets, this could be a beneficial practice as pet hair travels easily through the HVAC, and it isn’t until you change the filter that you understand how much your pets affect the air quality in your home.

Air filters should be chosen along their HEPA recommendations.  If you fit the categorization to have a stronger filter, then by all means get the most aggressive filter possible.  This will not only filter out the mold spores, but it will filter out other allergens as well making your home more pleasant.

Mold is a very serious issue, and it should be dealt with as soon as possible.  If you delay, then you run the risk of damage to your home and health.  If you suspect that you have mold growth present, call a professional mold removal service to assess your home and suggest plans to help you enjoy your home once again.

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

Mold in The Washer and Dryer

When you wash your clothes, it is a reasonable expectation that your clothes will be clean and ready for use.  We all look forward to the fresh smell of clothes when they emerge from the washer and dryer, but what if your clothes weren’t as clean as you hoped?  With mold potentially in the washer and dryer, your clothes might need to be washed again once the mold issue has been resolved.

Mold is incredibly pervasive, and it gets everywhere in your home.  We hope that washing machines and dryers provide us a safe haven from mold, but the recent court hearings of the past few years show that concerns about mold need to extend to washing machines and dryers as well.

Mold can be very detrimental to your health if you allow it to go unchecked.  It feeds on dust and moisture, and it reproduces by spores.  All of these can be present when we do laundry.  When clothes come from the washer, they can still contain particles and provide the moisture needed for mold growth.  The spores of mold are very durable and can withstand extreme heat and cold, and when you wear your favorite outfits, you could be spreading mold spores throughout your home.  This would raise your risk of wheezing, coughing, allergies, and potential for asthma in severe cases.

While washers and dryers can contain mold, there are some easy ways to help mitigate the mold issue.  First, wipe the machine dry when you are done with your laundry.  By removing moisture, you are depriving mold a key ingredient that it needs to grow.  You can also clean the detergent dispenser at least twice a month to prevent a buildup that could feed mold.  If your laundry room is damp, you may wish to run a dehumidifier in order to remove extra moisture from the air.  Keep your washer open when not in use in order to keep air circulating in the unit to air-dry any moisture you may have missed.

If you do the above on a regular basis, it is possible to minimize the impact of mold in your laundry room and home.  However, there are instances where mold grows, and it is necessary to call in a professional remediation.  Be sure to save all your warranty paperwork, but mold remediation professionals can help identify and solve mold issues in your home.  Being certified and knowledgeable in the most recent and up-to-date practices, these services can get it right quickly so you are sure that your items are clean when they are washed.

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

 

Mold Damage

As we move into Spring from Winter, the conditions for mold can begin to rise in your home.  As rains come and snow melts, then you will need to be vigilant about the condition of your home as water can find ways to enter.  If too much water gets into your home then you run the risk of increased mold until you take care of the issue.

Humid wall

The Basement

In the basement, you will want to make sure that you are routinely checking the foundation of the home.  Examine and fill any cracks that you might find in the basement walls.  As the ground around your home becomes overly saturated, then excess water will be able to travel into your home via the cracks.  If this occurs, then make sure that you move the materials that may be waterlogged and dry them out thoroughly.  Run a humidifier regularly in order to remove the moisture from the basement.  Be thorough.

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The Ceilings

As snow melts on the roof, pay attention to any water stains that might emerge on the ceilings inside the homes as this would be indicative of water damage in the attic of the home.  Water dams can create an abscess in the roof where water can enter.  This abscess also would allow melt water to enter the home increasing the level of moisture in the home.  Any moisture in the attic runs the risk of creating mold.

waterdamage

 The Attic

The other contributors to attic mold come from venting that leads into the attic, but then has no way to vent the moisture to the outside.  What happens is that the moisture becomes trapped in the attic, and then it is promotes mold.  This accumulation of attic moisture is especially prominent in winter when fans are not run to prevent cooling.  Mold can grow unchecked during this season.

Leak causing mold on ceiling in garage_edited

The Roof

Finally, if you have installed a new roof on the house, you might think that the home is prepared to repel water from the outside, but it is best to check on a regular basis after the roof has been installed.  In some cases, the work of the roofers may not be complete, and this allows water and moisture into the home.  This can result in physical damage to the house, but it can also give mold the moisture that it needs to grow in the attic.

molzd

Issues

Mold in the attic can be a very troublesome issue as it not only promotes health and mildew issues, but it can result in high cost damage to the home.  When dealing with attic mold, it is best to contact a specialist in mold removal quickly in order to eliminate the cause of moisture and remove the mold properly to prevent any long-term damage to your home and investment.

 

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

Be SMART – 4th of July Fire Safety Tips

4th of July Fire Safety Tips…

There is roughly more than $35,000,000 per year in fire damages nationally. These fires are due to fireworks, and decorations that are accented with fireworks. This ends up being expensive, not only for the government, and insurance companies, but also families who lose everything due to a fire. Even with insurance, families lose their private positions that may not be replicable or their lives.

Under California law, illegal fireworks include sky rockets, bottle rockets, roman candles, aerial shells, firecrackers and other miscellaneous types that explode, go up in the air, or move about the ground in an uncontrollable fashion. Those convicted could be fined up to $50,000 and sent to prison or jail for up to one year.

In 286 communities in the state, “safe and sane” fireworks are permitted. However, State fire officials want to remind those who choose to purchase legal fireworks this year to make sure they purchase only those with the “Safe and Sane” State Fire Marshal seal they are only used in the community where they are purchased. It is illegal to sell, transport, posses, or use any fireworks in areas where they are not allowed. Even “Safe and Sane” fireworks can be dangerous if used unsafely.

Severe burns, amputations, blindness, and, in some cases, deaths are often the result of 4th of July celebrations. CAL FIRE’s Office of the State Fire Marshal has the following tips:

  • Always read directions.
  • Always have an adult present.
  • Use fireworks outdoors only.
  • Never use near dry grass or other flammable materials.
  • Light one at a time. Keep a safe distance.
  • Never point or throw fireworks at another person.
  • Never experiment with fireworks.
  • Have a bucket of water and a hose handy.
  • Never attempt to re-light or “fix” fireworks.
  • Do not wear loose fitting clothing.
  • Never carry fireworks in your pockets.
  • Fireworks are not toys.
  • Use only State Fire Marshal approved fireworks..

What is Mold Testing?

Mold testing is done by taking a sample of the air or of a surface in the home.  This is done to determine what kind of mold is present, and if it is growing in the area of the home that is being tested.

When testing the air of a room, the tests can be done in many different ways.  The most used method is known as a ‘spore trap’.  The sample is called a ‘spore trap sample’.  These traps catch mold spores by having a fixed amount of air come into contact with a surface that catches spores as they travel through the device.  Mold makes up a small percentage of the particles that are captured by the device, so it is necessary to send the device to be tested.

When the mold is tested in the laboratories, it is necessary to classify the findings, so stains are applied to the mold found in the device.  These stains allow the testers to identify the types of mold, but also judge the extent of the growth by assessing the numbers of spores in the trap.

If the mold comes from a surface, then there are several different ways that samples could be collected.  The first is using what is known as bulk samples.  This would be when a large piece of the sampled area that had mold would be sent to lab for testing.  For example, if the home has mold on drywall, then a piece of the drywall could be removed and sent for the tests.

The next surface test would be based upon swab samples.  A cotton swab is moved across the area of a smaller size.  Once the swab has been completed, then it is carefully packaged and sent for testing.

The third sample is taken through tape sample.  Clear tape is pressed to the mold, and then the tape is removed from the sample area.  Using tape, the mold sticks and is removed when the tape is removed.  This sample can then be packaged and sent for testing.

When the mold arrives in the laboratory, there are several ways to test it for the type of mold that is present in the sampled area.  One of the most common is to create a microscope slide from the mold sample, and then the sample can be assessed for type of mold found.  Molds can also be grown in culture in petri dishes to ascertain the type of mold.

Once the mold is identified, then the mold removal company can create a targeted removal plan for the home.  This detailed plan will allow you to repair the damage to the home through mold, and it can make clean-up much quicker and complete.

 

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

Mold Remediation Process

Water Damage Zone Los Angeles is here to help with any mold removal. Attempting to clean up the mold may spread the mold spores, causing greater property damage or health problems. Mold can be dangerous to your health; therefore it is important that mold testing and mold remediation to be conducted by professionals as soon as mold is detected.

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