Having to deal with the aftermath of a disaster that has affected your home can be stressful and often, traumatic. Paul Davis shares the following tips and information that will help the recovery process go smoother.
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- Of course, it is always important to be sure you and your family (and don’t forget your pets) are secure and that you contact your relatives and friends to assure them that you are all safe.
- Report the damage to your insurance company as soon as you possibly can.
- Keep a listing of all household personal belongings or goods that you have discarded and receipts for any expenses you incur while protecting your property.
- Is your house safe? Depending on the amount of damage, you may need to relocate temporarily until the cleanup and repairs are finished. (Notify your insurance company if this is the case.)
Water Damage Tips
You’ve suffered a water loss. While you are waiting for us to arrive, listed below are helpful tips to help deal with the damage:
- Be Safe: Water events can present several potential safety hazards to occupants. The potential for slips, falls and electric shock are real. Keep in mind, items soaked with water can be very heavy. Only complete tasks that can be done so safely.
- Water Source: It is important to shut off the water. For most, the main shut-off valve is located either in your garage or utility room, or outside, next to your water meter.
- Electrical: Be sure to turn off all power to affected areas of the house. Do not operate your TV or other electrical appliances while standing on wet floors or carpets.
- Air Conditioning: Turn your air conditioner on to assist drying in the summer or in regions with more humidity.
- Floors: Remove as much standing water as possible, using towels or a mop. (Do not use the vacuum cleaner.)
- Carpeting: Blot wet carpeting with clean, white towels. Remove all colored rugs or Oriental rugs from wet wall-to-wall carpet.
- Clothing/Fabrics: Relocate wet items to dry areas. Don’t allow draperies to remain in contact with wet carpeting or floors.
- Furniture: Move lighter pieces off of the carpeting. Place plastic wrap or plastic bags under the legs of bigger furniture. Wipe any excess water off of the furniture.
Fire Damage Tips
You’ve suffered a fire loss. While you are waiting for help to arrive, below are some tips to help deal with the damage:
- Be Safe: Never reenter affected areas of the house until fire officials have deemed the scene safe. Even after the fire is out, there are potential safety hazards to be aware of. The potential for slips and falls from the water used to diffuse the fire, and scrapes and cuts from exposed, sharp edges are real. Only perform tasks that can be done safely.
- Going Back Inside: The effects of fire damage are measured down to microscopic levels. Even for a small amount of time, entry by a person can cause more damage. Enter ONLY if emergency personnel have cleared the property and deemed it safe to enter and only if absolutely necessary.
- Appliances/Electronics: Do not use any stereo, TV or other electrical appliances until they have been inspected by a technician. If the electricity is turned off, empty your refrigerator/freezer completely and prop the doors open using a rolled towel.
- Carpets: Avoid being on carpet if at all possible. Do not use “do-it-yourself” home carpet cleaners.
- Walls/Ceilings: Do not wipe or attempt to wash ceilings or other absorbent surfaces.
- Doors: Shut doors in affected areas to contain smoke odors as much as possible.
- Food Items: Do not eat food items exposed to smoke or canned goods that have been subjected to excessive heat.
- Furnace: Change the furnace or air conditioner filter if the blower is operating. Tape two pieces of cheesecloth over air registers with masking tape.
- Pets: Transport all pets to a safe environment until your house has been restored and cleaned.
- Plants: Clean plants with mild soap and water, cleaning both sides of the leaves.
- Windows: If possible, open windows to ventilate.
If your business or home has been damaged by storm, fire, mold, water or other disaster, Call Paul!