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5 Ways To Make Stone Floors Shine

8/13/2018 (Permalink)

Stone Floor ‘Shining' Techniques

Large office and warehouse buildings often have stone flooring that needs special attention while cleaning.

  1. Add a coating or finish - Although coatings or finishes add gloss to stone floors, this is not a recommended way to add shine to granite or marble floors. Natural stone needs to breathe, and adding coatings or finishes blocks the floor from breathing. Travertine or Terazzo floors are better suited to adding a coating or finish.
  2. Polishing - Polishing stone floors using diamond pads on your slow speed floor machine will add a highly reflective gloss to stone floors.
  3. Honing - Honing is a more aggressive procedure that smoothes the stone by using a more abrasive diamond disk that grinds imperfections on the floor surface.
  4. Grinding - Grinding is the most aggressive way to add shine to stone floors. This procedure will take care of lippage (uneven tiles). Grinding should only be done by experienced stone floor technicians.
  5. Crystallization - Crystallization is a chemical polishing process that is used in heavy traffic areas. In this situation you would use a crystallizer polish to add shine to the floor.

What to AVOID when it comes to stone floor care

  • Avoid using cleaners containing acids on marble, onyx, travertine, or limestone. The cleaners used to clean grout, bathrooms, or tube/tile usually contain harmful acids that can damage the stone floor
  • Avoid vinegar, bleach or lemon juice
  • Avoid abrasive cleaners or ammonia based products

Carpet Maintenance

8/13/2018 (Permalink)

Carpet has many merits and advantages as a flooring material, but spills can leave stains and daily traffic takes its toll. Learn how to clean carpet with methods for vacuuming, deep cleaning, and stain removal to help your carpets look better and last longer.

Carpets warm a home by adding color, pattern, and texture. Regular vacuuming provides the first line of defense against dirt and grit that damages carpet fibers. But carpets also need regular cleaning to keep them looking their best. Plan to thoroughly wash carpet every 12 to 18 months, more often in high-traffic areas. If you have light-color carpet and/or kids or pets, clean your carpets two or three times a year. Always follow the carpet manufacturer's cleaning guidelines.

Why You Should Leave Smoke Damage Restoration to a Proffesional

8/13/2018 (Permalink)

Smoke damage removal is one of the most difficult aspects of a house fire. It is also one of the most important tasks you need to tackle after a fire has damaged your home, and it is essential that you begin smoke damage removal immediately after a house fire to restore your home to its former state. However, entering your home to begin smoke damage removal after a house fire is usually unsafe, as it is likely your home’s structure has sustained fire and water damage. Therefore, you should always leave smoke damage removal to a professional restoration company, as they have the proper equipment, expertise, and experience to handle this task. To understand why it is necessary to leave this task to a professional, it can be helpful to know some information about the equipment and expertise required to implement smoke damage removal successfully.

Smoke Damage Removal Requires Special Equipment

One of the biggest reasons that smoke damage removal is not something you should do yourself is that it usually requires special, industrial-grade equipment to remove it from your home effectively. Smoke often seeps into the walls of your home and can cause future health issues if not removed properly. The best method for removing smoke odor from your home is with thermal fogging, a technique professionals use that works by opening the pores in your walls and neutralizing the smoke odor hidden within them. This combined with dehumidifiers to dry any water damage and ozone generators to help get the smoky smell out of your home is an effective method professionals use to make your home smoke-free. Depending on the extent of the damage to your home, it is likely the restoration company may need to repaint the walls and ceilings in your home after the smoke damage removal process is complete.

Smoke Damage Removal Requires Certain Expertise

In addition to requiring special equipment to remove smoke from your home thoroughly, smoke damage removal also requires a professional to have certain expertise about the different types of smoke and the necessary chemicals to remove them. For example, the smoke odor from wood can react differently to certain cleaning products than smoke odor from plastics, which means you could damage your home further if you do not know which type of smoke residue and odor you are dealing with. Professional fire restoration companies know details about the different types of smoke and how to deal with them properly, which means they are your best resource for cleaning, repairing, and restoring your home to its original state.

Smoke damage removal is one of the most frustrating and difficult tasks homeowners must deal with after a house fire. It requires much time, effort, and expertise, and is something you should always leave to a professional restoration company. For more information about smoke damage removal or finding the best professional to handle it for you, it is a good idea to contact a fire damage contractor.

Why You Should Get Fire Damage Estimates

8/13/2018 (Permalink)

After a house fire, getting fire damage estimates is critical. Without knowing the full extent of the damage, you may end up overspending on repairs or restoration. Either your homeowners’ insurance company or a third-party restoration company can provide the fire damage estimates for you. After a devastating event like a house fire, it is helpful to know just how much money you have to repair or restore your home to its former state. Since you should hire a restoration company anyway, fire damage estimates make the task of doing so much easier.

Discrepancies in Fire Damage Estimates

If your insurance company and third-party restoration company have a discrepancy in their fire damage estimates, one of two things are likely to happen: they can agree to a middle ground or begin arbitration. Choosing the middle ground option is a compromise of sorts and may include any number of outcomes, which are all dependent on the specifics of your situation. The other option involves including a third party, having them inspect and formulate an appraisal of the damage, and present that as an acceptable value. All of this depends heavily on your insurance company, the restoration company, applicable state laws, and the circumstances surrounding the fire.

What Fire Damage Estimates Do

Fire damage estimates allow you and your hired full-service restoration company to plan the restoration of your home. By having an effective budget, the company can do their best for you and make sure that they can return your home to its former. Most importantly, fire damage estimates include services that restoration companies do that you are unable to, such as removing smoke odors from your home or rebuilding any structures that the fire has damaged. Other costs that require professional help, such as special dry-cleaning of your garments and fabrics, may also be included. Additionally, if you attempt the repairs and accidentally cause more damage, chances are that the insurance does not cover the extra damage, whereas with a restoration company, it is covered.

Fire damage estimates allow a professional full-service restoration company to restore your home to its former state in the most effective manner possible. With a clear plan on which services you need, how much they cost, and how the company implements them, they can cater to your individual needs. After a devastating event such as a fire, money should not be your primary concern. A full-service restoration company can take care of all aspects regarding the remediation of the fire damage so you can concentrate on other things. For more information about fire damage estimates for your home, contact your insurance company.

Causes of Water Damage

8/3/2018 (Permalink)

There are several possible causes of water damage. Leaky dishwashers, clogged toilets, broken pipes, broken dishwasher hoses, overflowing washing machines, leaky roofs, plumbing leaks, and foundation cracks are just some of the possible causes of water damage in homes and businesses. Floods, heavy snow, and heavy rain are other possible causes of this type of damage and can lead to having water in basements. Too much water can lead to minor problems such as water in basement areas, or it can lead to the destruction of homes and businesses. Once a home or business sustains water damage, it is important to start the water damage cleanup immediately. Starting water damage cleanup as soon as possible increases the likelihood of saving water-soaked furniture, carpets, rugs, clothing, and other items.

Categories of Water Damage

8/3/2018 (Permalink)

Assessing the severity of the damage is important for determining what is needed to start water damage repair and water removal. There are several different categories assigned to water damage. Category 1 refers to clean water, or water that does not pose a threat to humans. Possible causes of this type of damage include broken appliances or sink overflows. Category 2 water is also called gray water. This means that the water is contaminated and may cause sickness of ingested. This type of water contains microorganisms. Broken toilets, broken sump pumps, and seepage may cause category 2 water damage. Category 3 water is known as black water. This type of water is unsanitary, as it contains bacteria and other organisms that cause sickness. The possible sources of black water damage include sewage problems and contamination of standing water.

There are also several classes of water damage. The class of damage is important when assessing water damage repair options. Class 1 is the least harmful form of damage. Materials absorb very little of the water from this type of damage. Water damage repair is the easiest in this type of situation. Class 2 has a fast rate of evaporation, which means that carpets and cushions may be damaged. Water damage repair is more difficult when it involves class 2 damage. Class 3 has the fastest rate of evaporation. In this case, the water may come from broken sprinklers or other overhead sources, soaking the walls and furniture. Class 4 requires special water restoration and water removal procedures. This type of damage may affect hardwood floors, plaster, and concrete.

Effects of Water Damage

8/3/2018 (Permalink)

Water damage is a problem that most property owners dread. When it rains heavily or snow melts quickly, the risk of this type of damage increases. Water can cause thousands of dollars’ worth of damage by damaging wood furniture, upholstery, electronics, household appliances, and plumbing equipment. Water damage also increases the risk of mold growth, which is a very expensive problem to remediate. Hiring a water damage restoration company can make the cleanup process easier to handle, as these companies employ experienced workers who know the best ways to repair or replace damaged items and help with water damage cleanup.
SERVPRO of Lake Elsinore has a vast array of products and highly skilled and trained water damage technicians who can make it "Like it never even happened."

Rain Storm Precautions

8/3/2018 (Permalink)

When a flood is happening you can take the following measures: 
- Disconnect all electrical and gas appliances. Shut off the water main to keep contaminated water from the water heater (a source of emergency water). 
- Bring any valuable or sentimental outdoor possessions inside. 
- Move valuables and essential items to upper floors of building. 
- Sandbags should be stacked well away from the building to avoid damaging walls. If major flooding is expected, flood the basement with clean water to equalize the water pressure on the outside of the basement walls and floors. This is to help prevent structural damage. 
- Round up pets.

The extent of the flooding will impact the amount of work required to get your home back to its former glory. Minimal flooding may require only the time it takes to remove the water and dry everything out. More extensive flooding can leave you needing a complete remodel. Be prepared for the potential construction site left in your home after a flood.

Four Steps to Preventing Mold Growth After A Water Damage

8/3/2018 (Permalink)

Step One – Remove Affected Materials

Aside from stopping the source of the moisture, it’s important to promptly remove wet furnishings and porous materials from the flooded area to enable a thorough damage-assessment, and drying and restoring contents that have not been compromised. 

Some of it - such as wet/moldy carpet, drywall, upholstery and fabrics - will need to be discarded.

Vacuum using HEPA-wet-dry vacuums to remove moisture, mold and soils without spreading allergenic or unhealthy mold and dust particles around your home. According to the IICRC, "It is preferable to use a HEPA vacuum, but a simple wet/dry vacuum can work. When using a wet/dry vacuum, attach a hose to the exhaust and vent the exhaust air to the outside. This keeps dust, spores and other fine particles from being suspended in the air and settling back on clean surfaces."  

In the case of minor “clean” flooding, say from a small burst indoor water pipe, homeowners can remove smaller wet items themselves, but should wear goggles, gloves, long sleeves and an N-95 respirator to avoid exposure to mold spores that may already be present in the environment. 

Clean mold from smooth surfaces using a weak bleach-water solution (1/4 - 1/2 cup bleach per gallon of water). Use gloves, eye and skin protection and plenty of ventilation. If you are sensitive to mold or chemicals, have someone else do it.

If the flooding is excessive and/or “dirty” - e.g., from a rising river or sewer backup - expert help is needed to protect health and property.
 

Step Two – Dry It Out and Quickly

Mold spores are everywhere, but need moisture to “germinate” – so drying affected areas is Step Two. Since mold can grow within 24 to 48 hours, quick action is critical.

Aside from obviously wet areas, experts using special meters can check for and locate moisture - even finding hidden wet/moldy places, such as inside wall cavities - and implement techniques to enable a thorough drying-out process. They may also use special fans or “air-scrubbing” equipment with HEPA filters. See also Step Three. 

Step Three – Air It Out

The flooded, wet area will need fresh air and ventilation to dry it out, but take care not to spread mold spores around your home by improper “airing”. Consult with an IICRC-certified firm to set up “containment”– a fancy word that means keeping doors closed, putting up plastic sheeting, exhausting air to the outdoors, and other measures to enable the drying and ventilation process without exposing loved ones to contaminated air from the flooded area.

Step Four – Keep it Dry to Keep It Out

The cardinal rule for preventing mold growth is – Keep it Dry. Strive to ensure your home’s insides are staying dry.  It’s also a way to protect the investment of your home, since excess mold growth and moisture will damage the structure, in addition to being unhealthful.

Try to keep indoor humidity below 50% using air conditioning or a dehumidifier. Have carpets cleaned by professionals that use equipment to clean and properly dry your carpet.

SERVPRO of Lake Elsinore are professional mold specialists who can help you with any size mold problem!

Follow These Mold Safety Tips If You Suspect Mold

7/16/2018 (Permalink)

If you see visible mold, do not disturb it. You can inadvertently spread the mold infestation throughout your home. When mold is disturbed, the mold can release microscopic mold spores which become airborne and can circulate inside your home.

What to Do:

  • Stay out of affected areas.
  • Turn off the HVAC system and fans.
  • Contact SERVPRO of Southeast Portland for mold remediation services.

What Not to Do:

  • Don’t touch or disturb the mold.
  • Don’t blow air across any surfaces with visible or suspected mold growth.
  • Don’t attempt to dry the area yourself.
  • Don’t spray bleach or other disinfectants on the mold.

About Our Mold Remediation Services

SERVPRO of Lake Elsinore/Menifee/Perris specializes in mold cleanup and restoration, in fact, it’s a cornerstone of our business.  Our crews are highly trained restoration professionals that use specialized equipment and techniques to properly remediate your mold problem quickly and safely.