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What To Do When a Sump Pump Fails

1/11/2021 (Permalink)

A sump pump installed in a basement of a home with a water powered backup system. A malfunctioning sump pump can cause a residential basement or crawlspace to flood

A malfunctioning sump pump can cause a residential basement or crawlspace to flood. Regularly test the pump at a home in Las Vegas, NV, as it is better to find out that a pump does not work when water is not accumulating on the lowest level of a structure. Here are three steps to take in the event that a pump does not activate or fails to drain water.

Check the Pump Function

The most reliable way to test pump functionality is to run water through the system. Take the following measures to check drainage capabilities:

  • Fill the sump pit with water
  • Check to see if the float raises
  • Make sure the pump activates

A pump that does not activate as the pit fills may have a bad float switch, blown fuse or tripped breaker. Sump pumps should have a primary and backup power source to prevent storm damage in the event of power failure.

Identify Needed Maintenance
If a pump is slow to drain or is not functional, ensure the basin and drain lines are clear. The check valves on sump pumps tend to fail. Test valve function by pushing this component up and down to ensure it moves freely. More advanced maintenance may require a plumber.

Repair or Replace a Sump Pump
A malfunctioning or broken pump may necessitate professional repairs or replacement. With proper pump maintenance, most sump pumps have an operational life of at least 10 years. Depending on your needs, you may want to consider a column, pedestal, or submersible pump.
If a sump pump is in working condition and connected to reliable primary and backup power sources, the risk of failure should be minimal. The pump should automatically activate and drain water that is backing up into a basement or crawlspace. Contact a plumber if backups remain a problem at a residence in Las Vegas, NV.

4 Signs You Need a New Carpet

1/6/2021 (Permalink)

wet carpet, mold growth on wall Mold is a sure sign that you need to replace your carpeting

Sometimes, you need to replace your carpet. However, it can be hard when to know that it is time. Fortunately, some pretty obvious signs let you know when to replace your flooring.

Here Are a Few Of The Most Prevalent Signs

1. Mold
Mold is a sure sign that you need to replace your carpeting. Anything from a spill to a pipe break can lead to water in your rug. This water can cause mold spores to grow. Therefore, you should always monitor your flooring for signs of mold.

2. Rips
No matter how clean your house is, a ripped rug can make it look disgusting. Tears can also give away your floor's age. Carpeting can get rips just a few years after being installed. If you take care of it, it can last much longer before getting rips. However, once you start noticing rips, you need to replace your flooring.

3. Stains
If your carpet has staining, it is time for a new one. Stains can be caused by a pipe break, muddy animals, or accidental spills. Short of hiring a professional remediation company, there is no way of getting these stains out. These stains can devalue your home. Therefore, it is time to replace.

4. Style
Carpeting can quickly go out of style in Summerlin, NV. After all, that shag you are still hanging on to went out of style a long time ago. While you may love your rug, it could make selling the home more difficult. Adding a new rug can also increase the value of your home. So if your carpeting is out of style, you have a problem. It would be best if you replaced it before trying to sell your home.
Whether a pipe break required you to have a water damage restoration and left you with moldy flooring or your rug is really out of style, you should consider replacing your rug. Replacing your carpet after you notice any of these signs can improve your home's value and keep it looking clean and stylish.

Cleanup After a Fire Can Determine Your Business's Recovery

1/6/2021 (Permalink)

Visible damage to a commercial building following a structure fire Leave the fire cleanup process to professionals in Las Vegas, NV

Fire Cleanup Process

Did you know that a fire could require extensive water cleanup measures at your businesses in Sun City Summerlin, NV? Smoke cleanup is also a necessary step to deal with the aftermath of a fire. A professional service that knows how to handle fire cleanup properly can get your business ready to operate again.

Water Damage
Firefighters use powerful hoses that emit gallons of water to extinguish flames. Although the goal is to prevent fires from spreading, the power exerted by hoses and the water they leave behind can also cause extensive damage due to soaking and flooding of:

  • Carpets and upholstery
  • Electronics and furniture
  • Drywall and floors
  • Files and inventory

It is necessary to begin urgent water cleanup measures as soon as possible after putting out a fire to prevent mold formation, which could lead to further complications. A professional water extraction service can apply powerful equipment to dry out your space, monitor humidity levels and look for mold formation signs. If mold is present, it is essential to begin remediation methods to prevent additional damage that could be extensive and costly.

Smoke Damage
After a fire, smoke can linger, causing soot particles from burning objects to attach themselves to surfaces and penetrate the air. Without the proper techniques and tools for soot cleanup, further irreparable damage is possible. Professional restoration services can analyze the damage and apply the appropriate dry or wet cleaning techniques to increase the chances of salvaging your property; however, soot-damaged objects are often irreparable.
The soot cleaning process should include air scrubbing, which can effectively remove microscopic soot particles that attach themselves to air molecules. This process usually accompanies the use of ozone and hydroxyl generator machines to eliminate lingering odors after soot or water cleanup.
Putting your business back together after a fire can be overwhelming, but you don't need to handle the job alone. Leave the fire cleanup process to knowledgeable professionals in Las Vegas, NV, who have the experience necessary to help you recover from any disaster.

Category 3 Water Damage: What It Is and How to Deal With It

12/8/2020 (Permalink)

wet carpet in commercial building Water damage in a commercial building

Has your building in Sun City Summerlin, NV, been impacted by category 3 water damage? Or, perhaps, you've heard this term thrown around often, and you're unsure of what it means. Whatever the case, it's always best to be informed and prepared.

What Causes It

This water damage can come from many sources, all contaminated in some regard.

  • Flash flood water
  • Toilet overflow
  • Sewage backup
  • Heavy rain
  • Damaged sewer lines

All of these sources of water are only the start; there is a big qualifier for category 3 flood water. It's is the fact that it occurs specifically when this contaminated water from any of these sources absorbs into materials such as drywall, flooring, or other porous surfaces.

How to Deal With It
The best well to deal with any type of contaminated flood water, especially one this severe, is to always contact a water damage and cleanup professional. They can assess the damage and decide the most efficient course of action for restoring your building to working order.

Why Professionals Are Essential
Another risk with category 3 water damage is the fact that it spreads so quickly. The materials your walls and flooring are made of are the perfect food source for the contaminants in the dirty water. This is especially true in high-humidity areas. It's simply unsafe and unwise to attempt to clean anything up yourself, but the professionals will have specialized cleaning equipment that's meant for this specific scenario. Professionals will also be sure to completely clean the affected areas thoroughly, thus preventing hidden mold growth in the future. They can also be contracted to take care of reconstructing your building, as well as the cleanup.
With some basic knowledge under your belt and being informed of the necessity of a professional, you can be sure that your building will be restored to working order both safely and efficiently.

Essential Elements of a Fire Escape Plan

12/8/2020 (Permalink)

Map of a house and escape routes Practice makes perfect

Develop And Communicate A Solid Plan

While having smoke alarms in your Las Vegas, NV, home may be the first line of defense, having a fire escape plan is just as important. A fire damage and restoration company can repair and restore the damage from a home fire, but the safety of everyone in the household relies on developing and communicating a solid plan.

Key Elements
While every home is different, as are the people who reside in it, a basic fire escape plan should include the following vital elements.

Make a Map – The map should include every hallway, room, door, window and level of the house. This not only provides a visual of the home but also allows for the next step of the plan.
Designate Escape Routes – Every room needs at least two escape routes in case the effects of the fire blocks one of them. This is especially important for homes with more than one level. The ability to exit the door and go down the stairs may not be a viable option. It is a good idea to consider keeping fire ladders in each upper-level room to ensure a safe exit from a second-story window.
Communicate a Meeting Place – After everyone knows how to get out the safest way possible, they also need to know where to go for a headcount. A designated meeting place across the street or on the corner of your neighbor’s sidewalk allows for a safe distance from the flames.

Practice Makes Perfect
As important as fire preparation is, it only works if it is regularly revisited. Physically going through the plan on a regular basis, as they do in school, helps solidifies the process and may highlight areas that may need to be addressed. It’s also important that everyone in the household, including guests, have a copy of the plan.
A fire is often an unexpected event, so ensure you have made and practiced a fire escape plan to increase the chances of everyone safely getting out of the home.

What You Need to Know About Mold in Air Ducts

12/4/2020 (Permalink)

Dust in air duct Mold in air duct

Mold growth is common in outdoor areas any time of year. Due to excessive moisture during wet seasons, it's not uncommon to also experience black mold in the one place you don't want it, which is inside your home in Las Vegas, NV. Unfortunately, this type of mold isn't easily removed and it can invade areas of your home where it can go unnoticed, including in air ducts where it feeds of dust.

How To Know if Mold Has Entered Air Vents

There are some common visual signs to watch for if you suspect mold has made a home in your air vents. These include:

  • Musty odor emanating from your vents
  • Black powder around exterior and interior of vents
  • Dark spots that don't easily wipe off vents

If you suspect mold is present, don't attempt to clean it yourself. You likely don't have the right equipment or training to remove it safely.

How Black Mold Is Removed
Have a professional first confirm what you are experiencing is black mold. Once it's confirmed, it will be recommended that you have the ducts cleaned by a restoration specialist.
The specialists will need to take time to inspect your air ducts, including the insulation that surrounds them. If mold is found in the insulation, it will need to be removed and replaced. They will then clean and vacuum your AC system using special tools and protective equipment.

Preventing Future Infestations
During the restoration process, the issue that created the mold growth will need to be identified and corrected so it doesn't happen again. It's important going forward that you try to keep your vents clear of dust and debris. One of the best ways to have clean ducts is to regularly change your AC filters.
Always try to keep your home dry and free of too much moisture. Never allow water or condensation to pool on the materials of your home. A dry home is a home free of black mold.

3 Legitimate Reasons To Doubt the Accuracy of Home Mold Testing Kits

11/19/2020 (Permalink)

Mold Armor DIY test kit. For testing mold at home. Mold testing using at-home kits will most likely give you inaccurate or unusable answers

Here Are Three Reasons To View Home Mold Kits With Some Skepticism

In the modern digital age, people have access to more information than ever before. There are blogs, websites and videos filled with instructions and ideas for DIY projects that offer a mix of accurate and sketchy information. However, there are some activities better handled by professionals. Mold testing is one of these.
While it is possible get a mold kit and try to perform DIY mold treatment in your home in Summerlin, NV, testing is best performed by a trained environmental hygienist, and the actual mold cleanup is best done by a professional cleanup and restoration service. 

1. Unreliable Results
Mold testing kits cannot be trusted to provide reliable results. They only show if mold is in the home. The problem with this is that mold is everywhere; there is no home that does not have mold. It even contaminates the air you breathe. Therefore, these home testing kits are guaranteed to return a positive result.

2. Unscientific Procedures
These kits often use an unscientific procedure. Many are not scientifically sound due to numerous factors:

  • There is often no control sample.
  • They can be unknowingly exposed, contaminated or expired due to lack of an expiration date, which can lead to inaccurate measurement.
  • There is the possibility of the samples being improperly handled when sent off for analysis.
  • There is no controlled airflow for measurement by volume (the measurement usually used in guidelines).

3. Official Recommendation Shortage
The general uselessness of home mold kits is known by trustworthy sources as well. They are not recommended by Consumer Reports and in fact are even warned against by organizations within the mold industry, such as the American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists. They are also almost never certified.
Mold testing using at-home kits will most likely give you inaccurate or unusable answers. If you suspect the presence of mold in your home, it is best to consult professionals to minimize damage to the home.

Important Things To Know About Your Home's Supply Lines

11/19/2020 (Permalink)

Water piping tube installed externally along the bathroom wall to supply water for a heater. Supply line damage is just one source of unwanted water coming into a home

Important Things To Know About Your Home's Supply Lines

It is not uncommon for a homeowner in Las Vegas, NV, to face the problem of supply line damage. These workhorses of the home's plumbing system bring in the water supply from the outside, either by way of a municipal water line or a well system. The pipes are bigger than the other pipes in a home and can carry large volumes of water. A supply line can be made of different materials, with plastic and steel braided being the most likely. While plastic lines are often easier to work with and are less expensive, they generally do not last as long as steel pipes. They are also more vulnerable to breakage.

Dealing with a supply line leak
A leak in the plumbing system could be a one-time event or it could be sign that the plumbing system is in need of major work. A plumbing contractor should be brought in to investigate the situation and fix the supply line damage. A few other steps should be taken at this time, too:

  • Contact insurance agent
  • Call in a water cleanup crew
  • Document expenses
  • Move vulnerable items from the leak

A professional water remediation team will be able to dry out the affected area and look for signs of secondary damage. Technicians will look to make sure the leaking water has not resulted in a mold problem.

Handling other forms of water damage
Supply line damage is just one source of unwanted water coming into a home. Other common sources of problematic water include a leaking roof, a faulty appliance and a bathroom leak. Each situation is unique and the cleanup and restoration process must be versatile. For example, if the water comes from a contaminated source there is a danger to humans and pets. Professionals will wear personal protective equipment when cleaning the home. They will also engage in a vigorous sanitizing process that ensures the home is free of pathogens.

How To Remove Smoke Odor

10/30/2020 (Permalink)

hand with a plastic glove and cloth cleaning tile with smoke Smoke odor removal services in Sun City Summerlin, NV

Removing Smoke Odor

If there is smoke damage at your Sun City Summerlin, NV, business, the residual odor can be very difficult to eliminate. Fortunately, a variety of removal techniques can be employed.

Masking the Odor
Some people try to cover up the smell of smoke. Unfortunately, this does not work. The following items do not remove smoke odor:

  • Candles
  • Incense
  • Air freshener

Although these items may temporarily mask the odor, the smoke smell will return when the pleasant aroma fades.

Removing the Odor
While the above methods only add an extra layer of fragrance to the area, there are techniques that actually get rid of the particles causing the smoke odors. The following are three common and effective methods of smoke cleaning:

  • Air purification
  • Thermal fogging
  • Ozone treatment

After addressing the smoke damage itself, air purification is a good starting point for odor elimination. The machines circulate the air and trap the smoke particles that pass through the filter. HEPA and activated carbon filters are ideal choices. Make sure to change the filters according to the manufacturer’s instructions so that the machine is always at its best.
If air purification does not completely eliminate the odor, an ozone treatment or thermal fogging session may be necessary. When ozone is released, the molecules attach to the smoke particles and create a new compound that does not have a smoky odor. For other businesses, thermal fogging may be the best approach. With this technique, the temperature in the building is increased. This causes porous materials to expand so that the deodorizing fog can reach into even the most difficult places.
Although all business owners can safely run an air purifier, ozone treatments and thermal fogging often require the help of an experienced fire restoration service to be carried out safely and correctly. Whether you are dealing with soot damage, smoke damage or other fire-related problems, it is important to restore your business to preloss condition so you and your employees can get back to work.

5 Common Water Issues in Commercial Buildings

10/30/2020 (Permalink)

Clogged toilet Clogged toilet

Common Water-Related Problems

Staying on top of smaller issues in your commercial building is one of the best ways to prevent them from snowballing into larger problems. Remaining vigilant is especially important when it comes to plumbing issues, such as leaking pipes or backed up toilets. Make sure you regularly check your building in Las Vegas, NV, for the following common water-related problems.

1. Low Water Pressure
Low water pressure can indicate several different issues, such as leaking pipes. Any water that escapes through the leak naturally won't come out of the faucet where it's supposed to, leading to suboptimal water pressure.

2. Damaged Building Foundation
Structural damage in your building, such as cracked, bulging or otherwise warped foundation, can signal the presence of a serious leak. These deformities are often a result of flood water accumulating within your building's structure and can indicate a hidden pipe break.

3. Clogged Drains
Customers are much less likely to treat your commercial bathrooms with the same respect that they'd treat a residential one. This can lead to many undesirable items getting flushed down your pipes, resulting in clogs. At the very least, this leads to an unsightly bathroom. In severe cases, it can result in toilet backup or sewage overflow.

4. Pinhole Leaks
Pinhole leaks are especially common in older buildings, where the copper or cast-iron pipes aren't built to last as long. These tiny holes can cost thousands in wasted water. Keep an eye out for these silent leaks by watching for a spike in your monthly water bill or a drop in your building's water pressure.

5. Leaking Toilets and Faucets
Much like pinhole leaks, dripping faucets and toilets can slowly, yet steadily, drive up your monthly water bill. Make sure you take the time to inspect your commercial bathrooms to make sure none of the appliances are dripping or leaking. Repair any problems you come across.
Leaking pipes, dripping faucets, and clogged drains are all common plumbing issues for commercial building owners. Staying on top of the issue can help reduce the amount of damage your building suffers and keep your business running smoothly. Contact water restoration experts for professional help.