Tips for Pipe Protection
Keep the heater on if outside temperatures will dip below freezing
Keeping Your Home Safe from Bursting Pipes
Frozen pipes are often the culprit when homes flood in the winter. Fortunately, prevention of this problem is pretty easy. To keep your home in Oak Grove, KY, safe from flooding due to busted pipes, try the following methods.
1. Insulate Pipes
The most long-term solution for avoiding pipe freeze and thus the need for water restoration services is adding insulation. You can either add it to the pipes themselves by sliding a fiberglass sleeve over them or you can add extra insulation to the walls. The latter option may even save you money on heating bills!
2. Heat Air
Always keep the heater in your home on if there is a chance that outside temperatures will dip below freezing. Then, you can warm up the air around the pipes by venting the heat from your home into the walls. For pipes that are under your sink, you can keep the cabinet doors open so that the area under the sink heats along with the rest of the house.
3. Open Faucets
Allowing a slow drip from select faucets throughout your home is an easy way to prevent frozen pipes. Moving water is less likely to freeze than standing water, so the constant flow through the pipes works in your favor.
4. Seal Cracks
Another way to increase your home's energy efficiency while also protecting your plumbing is to maintain proper seals in walls, floors, ceilings and windows. Gaps allow wind to get in from outside. By caulking those gaps, you can keep warm air in and cold air out.
5. Apply Heat
Sometimes, the direct approach is helpful. You can use heating tape directly on pipes to heat them up. Whether you choose tape that switches on when it sense the need to do so or tape you can turn on and off manually, pipes that are most vulnerable to freezing are protected.
You can avoid frozen pipes and the mess they can make with these simple methods. Following these five tips can keep your plumbing warm all winter.
Insurance Claims and Mold: Avoiding Claims Through Prevention
Leaking hot water heater caused mold to grow under the several layers of flooring
Insurance Claims and Mold
Fungus growth can occur relatively quickly, but most insurers do not provide mold coverage. Granted, mold can be covered under certain perils, but when occurring over prolonged periods, it is likely not covered. Therefore, to avoid claims and denials, it becomes about mold prevention and control, and there are a few ways to do that.
1. Consider Safety
First and foremost, if you already have a mold issue, call for help. Remediation specialists are qualified to handle mold infestations and will ensure that you and your property are safe. While there are certain instances where a DIY path is possible, it is always better to be safe than sorry.
2. Fix Leaks
Fungus growth requires moisture to develop. Therefore, one of the easiest forms of prevention is to have a plumbing inspection and fix any leaks. Additionally, inspect your roof and window and door seals, fixing any issues that are visible.
3. Control Humidity Levels
Beyond eliminating leaks, you can invest in dehumidifiers for heavy moisture areas in your home. For instance, basements and attics are notorious for mold growth and development. You may also want to inspect your bathroom fan and kitchen and laundry exhaust units to ensure that the ventilation in your home is working properly.
4. Call for Assistance
While mold insurance coverage may not be as inclusive and expansive as you’d like, prevention can help you secure your property. However, if you have any questions about prevention or are in need of an inspection, you can call a mold remediation specialist in the Franklin, KY, area to assist you.
Fungus growth, though common, is not often covered under most insurance policies. Therefore, it is up to property owners to use preventative measures to protect their homes. By fixing leaks and controlling humidity levels, homeowners do a great deal to stave off the threat of mold growth.
3 Surprising Things You Can Do To Reduce the Smell of Cigarette Smoke
If you still have smoke odor, try calling professional restoration services
How to Reduce The Smell of Cigarette Smoke In Your Furniture and Carpets
Home deodorization in Hopkinsville, KY, can be a challenge, especially if you or a family member smokes. Whether you are getting ready to host friends or family members or you just want to be ready for unexpected company, here are a few surprising things you can do to reduce the smell of cigarette smoke in your furniture and carpets and throughout your home.
1. Use Vinegar
Vinegar might not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think of cigarette removal, but it’s very good at removing stubborn scents from a variety of fabrics. If you have pillow cases, blankets or decorative throws that are saturated with the scent of your cigarettes, throw them in the wash with two cups of vinegar. Then put them through a regular drying cycle. You’ll be surprised at how fresh-smelling they are when you pull them out. If the smell of cigarette smoke lingers, wash them once more to get rid of it completely.
2. Sprinkle Baking Soda on Furniture
Baking soda is a well-known air-freshening tool. It’s frequently used in refrigerators to soak up the smell of old, rotten food. You can also use it to absorb the smell of stale cigarette smoke. For home deodorization purposes, sprinkle baking soda on all soft furniture surfaces in your home. It won’t work very well on leather, but it should work great on fabric furniture. After sprinkling generously across all furniture, use your hands to smooth it out and make it disappear into the fabric. After letting it sit for at least 10 minutes, vacuum it up. You can use the same technique on carpets, rugs and drapes.
3. Repaint or Replace
In some cases, cigarette odor is so pervasive that it can’t be removed with simple cleaning methods. In this case, may want to consider repainting your home or replacing old, smelly carpets if the scent bothers you enough.
If you have tried the above steps and you still have an odor, try calling professional restoration services. They have the tools and expertise necessary to handle your home deodorization needs.
What Your Noisy Water Pipes Are Trying To Tell You
Water damage in a Franklin, NY home
What Your Noisy Water Pipes Are Trying To Tell You
Every house has its own set of familiar noises, like the creaking of floorboards or groaning of a settling foundation. However, the sounds coming from your water pipes may be a warning. While a whistling faucet may simply require a new washer to quiet down, if you have a hissing, whistling sound in multiple fixtures and a hammering noise coming from your pipes, you could be headed for a pipe break.
Residential water pressure is usually around 80 psi, but sometimes municipalities have to increase pressure for nearby non-residential facilities. When this happens in Franklin, KY, the increased water pressure can damage your home’s plumbing. In addition to the irritation of noisy pipes, high water pressure can:
- Erode pipes
- Reduce life expectancy of fixtures
- Increase water bills
- Result in leaks
- Cause a pipe burst
What’s Causing the Noises?
As a large amount of water is forced through fixture openings designed to handle a lower flow, it makes a whistling sound, just like forcing a large amount of air through pursed lips causes a whistling sound.
When water suddenly stops flowing through pipes, the momentum causes it to slam around inside the pipe, which causes a clanging or banging sound. Your plumbing has built-in air chambers to prevent this from happening, but when water pressure is higher than normal, the chambers aren’t enough to prevent the hammering sound. The longer you wait to address high water pressure in your home, the more likely it is to cause a pipe break.
What To Do About High Pressure
If you suspect your water pressure is too high, call a plumber in Franklin, KY, to test the pressure for you. A device called a pressure regulating valve, or PRV, can be installed to control the water pressure inside your home. Hiring a professional to prevent a pipe break is far preferable to hiring one to fix broken pipe inside your walls.
A Timeframe for Damage Restoration Response
SERVPRO a leading restoration company
Owners of homes that have sustained damage should start the mitigation and restoration process as soon as possible. Leading restoration companies are always open and can respond to a call, provide an on-site consultation, and offer a verbal briefing within a 24 hour window. Learn more about the timeframe for responding to any type of damage.
A fast call response within one hour is ideal for a mitigation and restoration service. The initial communication should cover the following information about damage:
The next step is scheduling a consultation. For the best results, homeowners should make this call within a 24 hour period after damage occurs.
Experts should arrive on location within four hours of a call response. These professionals can assess the degree of damage and recommend strategies to avoid additional damage. Homeowners should document damage for insurance purposes before taking any mitigation measures.
A company should provide a verbal briefing within eight hours of an on-site assessment. This briefing should provide an overview of the remediation process:
- Mitigation measures
- Cleaning methods
- Restoration timeline
Each of these factors will impact the duration of the cleanup and rebuilding process and the overall estimate. A one-stop shop can oversee this process from start to finish.
Estimate and Schedule
A company can then provide an estimate for homeowners to forward to their insurance provider. Depending on the cause and type of damage, an insurer may or may not cover losses. Limits may also apply. Homeowners should review the terms of their coverage prior to filing a claim.
A mitigation and restoration company should provide a fast response and clear description of mitigation and restoration procedures. It may also be possible to obtain mitigation services within a 24 hour period, such as boarding up or tarping over structural damage at a residence in Hopkinsville, KY.
4 Signs of Mold
Leaky window causes mold growth in Hopkinsville, KY
Mold can start growing easier than you might think. Spores are constantly in the air, waiting for the right environment in which to grow. If you suspect you have a black mold problem, call a specialist in mold remediation in Hopkinsville, KY as soon as possible.
Signs Your Home May Be Contaminated
Not all of these signs are unique to mold. But, if you do notice one or more of these things, consider having your home tested.
Musty Smell – If you notice an odd musty smell, you may have a problem. Try to find the source of any strange odors. Sometimes, the culprit is moldy food that fell behind a cabinet or a forgotten gym bag. Other times, the mold is growing unsuspected in a damp corner of your home.
Moisture – If an area of your home stays unusually wet, you could have the perfect environment for the growth of black mold. Basements and bathrooms are known culprits. It doesn’t take long for mold to grow. Try to keep these problem areas clean and well ventilated.
Growths – If you notice anything black, blue, green, white or yellow on any surface, no matter how small, you may have mold. Identifying the source of mold can help you eliminate it. If you see mold, try to determine the cause. If you have a moisture problem, removing the mold will only be a temporary fix.
Food spoils quickly – If you encounter a constant issue of fresh fruits spoiling on the counter within a couple of days, you might have a mold issue. Occasional food spoilage is more likely due to less than fresh food, but food regularly getting moldy one to two days after purchase is a bad sign.
These are all signs your home may need a mold cleanup. Black mold specialists can come to your home and run tests to make sure you don’t have a problem. If you do have fungus growing in your home, it is wise to take care of it before it becomes a bigger problem. Visit http://www.SERVPROchristiantoddlogansimpsoncounties.com for more information on mold.
Top Things to Do (and Not Do) To Prepare for a Storm
Frozen pipes is one of the most common threats.
Readying For A Winter
Readying for a winter storm involves more than watching the weather report and stocking up on groceries. There’s the odd pipe break, roof stresses and countless other things to prepare for. Whether you’re in the throes of winter or just thinking ahead, consider these do’s and do nots to ensure your Pembroke, KY building gets through the worst of it.
Winter Storm Threats
A storm can pose a surprisingly diverse variety of threats to your building. Some of the most common threats include:
- Snow build up on roofs
- Ice dams in gutters
- Pipe freezes
Each of these can result in damage that can create major inconvenience as well as big expenses in the long run. Preparing for these and other threats is the best way to save yourself a headache.
Do Insulate Your Building
While buildings naturally come with insulation, there’s often room for reinforcement, especially in areas prone to severe winters. Improve efficiency by placing plastic over windows, caulking drafty windows and ensuring you don’t have any holes in your roof. Take note of areas where icicles form around your roof eaves to help you target areas for interior leak inspections.
Don’t Ignore Your Yard
Tree branches are easily weighted down by snow and ice and those can fall onto your building creating disaster. Trim back trees in the warmer season to reduce the chance of major damage to your roof or windows.
Do Service your Thermostat/Furnace
A storm is not the time to find out your thermostat is malfunctioning. Prepare in advance by checking your thermostat to ensure it’s working properly. Further, check your furnace filter and inspect heating ductwork to ensure you’ll be safe from frigid temperatures.
A winter storm can cause serious damage and even loss of life. Ensure your safety by preparing for the season with these basic pointers. And if you’re already facing storm damage, connect with seasoned storm cleanup experts to make things like new.
Does Your Homeowner’s Insurance Policy Cover Fire Damage?
House fire in a Rusellville, KY home
Recuperating from the loss associated with a home fire in Rusellville, KY, is hard enough on its own without trying to figure out what your homeowner’s insurance policy covers. While the fire restoration company will take care of repairing the damage to your home and restoring it to its original condition, it will be up to you to contact your insurance company to find out what’s covered. Here are the basics of what your home insurance will typically cover and what specific circumstances they won’t.
What Your Insurance Will Cover
Most common causes of a home fire are covered by a majority of insurance policies. Examples of scenarios where your home and personal belongings would be covered include:
- Cooking fires
- Accidental cigarette fires
- Fires caused by children or pets
- Electrical fires
- Lightning and storms
Basically, if the fire happened due to circumstances out of your control or because of an accident, you will almost always be covered.
What Your Insurance Doesn’t Cover
There are two main exceptions that a basic homeowners insurance policy won’t cover.
If you for whatever reason decided to set fire to your own home, insurance will understandably not cover the costs of the damage. You might wonder why someone would purposely destroy their home; often, this occurs because people want to collect the money insurance gives for the damages.
A vacant home fire is another situation that your insurance will not cover. If no one has entered your home for 30 days straight, it is considered vacant. However, you can purchase an endorsement to your policy to cover a vacant home. This is useful if you have a vacation home or property you only visit occasionally.
Although certainly a stressful situation, is it reassuring to learn that a home fire is almost always covered by your insurance policy! Unless arson was involved or your home was vacant at the time of the fire, you can expect to receive some substantial compensation for the damage that occurred.
3 Ways To Banish Shower Mold
Mold damage on walls of a shower
Black mold anywhere in your home is a drag. But shower mold is particularly troublesome - after all, it’s where you go to get clean. Yet this perpetually moist environment is one of the most common places for mold to grow. There are ways to prevent mold if you don’t have it in your Oak Grove, KY, home, and kill it if you do.
Why Do I have mold?
It’s easy to think you did something wrong to have a mold problem. The fact is, it’s impossible to get rid of all mold and mold spores in our environment. These organisms love moist, dark areas like:
- Crawl spaces
- Beneath sinks
And of course, your shower. Fortunately, you have options.
Dry It Out
Mold loves wet areas, so one of the easiest ways to prevent it is to keep things dry. Invest in a bathroom fan to remove damp air following showers. Hang towels and clothes to dry, since piles of wet fabric offer a perfect place for mold to take hold.
Grout, the white stuff in between your tiles, is a common location for bathroom mold.
You can try bleach-based cleaners, but those don’t penetrate porous surfaces like grout. If your grout is covered in slimy shower mold, it’s best to find a contractor to replace your grout and start fresh.
Caulk is the flexible, silicon-based material that seals up your shower. It’s also another favorite place for mold to grow, as it tends to absorb water and never fully dry out. If mold is at home on your caulk, it’s easy enough to remove and replace with a trip to the hardware store and a little elbow grease.
Your shower should be a clean, comfortable place. If mold is threatening that, take charge! Use these tips or call a mold remediator to learn more about ways you can keep your shower fungus-free.
Replace a Toilet In 10 Steps
A leaking toilet can cause more problems than you think
Replace a Toilet In 10 Steps
Homeowners may save money by replacing a broken or persistently leaking toilet. If you have a basic understanding of toilet repair and the necessary tools, these ten steps can guide you through the replacement process.
Measure from the wall behind the old toilet to the water supply line and closet bolts. You may also measure from the bowl to the sidewall.
2. Eliminate Water
Turn off the water supply and flush water from the tank. Use a sponge or solidifying gel to dry the tank. Disconnect the supply line.
3. Remove Tank and Bowl
Unscrew the nuts on the bottom of the tank and lift the tank up off the bowl. Loosen and remove the nuts connecting the bowl to the floor and remove the bowl.
4. Remove Wax Ring and Closet Bolts
Remove and dispose of the wax ring. Use a putty knife to scrape excess wax off of the flange. Remove the closet bolts.
5. Check Flange Condition
A damaged flange can cause a leaking toilet. Complete repairs before installing a new toilet.
6. Install New Closet Bolts and Wax Ring
Install new closet bolts. Turn the new toilet bowl upside-down and install a new wax ring on the outlet.
7. Install Toilet Bowl
Situate the bowl over the closet bolts. Install cap bases, washers, and nuts. Use a hacksaw to shorten the bolts and snap on caps.
8. Install Tank
Install bolts and a rubber gasket on the bottom of the tank. Set the tank in place and tighten nuts.
9. Reconnect Water Supply
Connect the supply line. Flush the toilet and look for any signs of leaks.
10. Install Seat and Cover Tank
Install the seat and cover the tank. The toilet installation is complete.
If a new toilet leaks, it may be necessary to tighten closet bolts or check components. Hire a plumber if you cannot locate the source of a leaking toilet. For a severe leak or backup, rely on water damage restoration professionals in Franklin, KY.