Recent General Posts

Spring Flood Tips

5/4/2017 (Permalink)

General Spring Flood Tips Act fast to mitigate your flood loss.

Spring snowmelt often leads to flooding conditions in New Mexico. These tips will help reduce the impact spring floods have on you and your property.

 

Advance Preparation

 

Prepare in advance with a SERVPRO® Emergency Ready Profile® (ERP). Our convenient mobile app stores all your utility and emergency response information in one place, so you can access this information from your smartphone or computer.

 

Watch for Pooling Water 

 

Look for places around your property where water pools, and channel it away from buildings. Make sure gutters and downspouts are clear of debris and they are directing water as intended.

 

Maintain Sump Pump 

 

If you have a sump pump, check to be sure it is operational before water starts rising. Consider a back-up generator to ensure your pump works when you need it most. Contact your insurance agent to add coverage in case your sump pump fails. 

 

Raise Storage Goods 

 

Use shelving and/or pallets to keep storage items off the floor to reduce the impact of small floods. In many situations, raising boxes just a few inches will be enough to keep storage goods above the water line. 

 

Cut Power if Necessary 

 

As rising water approaches the level of electrical outlets, you risk having a live current flow through all the water. Cut the power if you can safely do so without standing in water. Otherwise, evacuate and contact an electrician to cut the power before you go back in for recovery.

 

Keep Storm Drains Clear

 

If you see water pooling around a storm drain, the drain may be clogged with debris. Clearing the debris will help keep the water flowing away from your neighborhood.

 

Consider Flood Insurance 

 

Homeowners insurance will not cover floods; you must purchase a separate policy for flood protection. When all else fails, flood insurance will provide you the means to respond to a catastrophic flooding event.

 

Be Aware on the Road 

 

Be careful when driving during spring storms, especially when you hear flash flood warnings. Never drive into fully submerged roadway. The water surface will be at the same level as the pavement you can see. This view can deceive you into thinking the water is shallow because you cannot see how the road dips under the surface. 

 

Act Fast 

 

When a flood happens, you need to act fast to dry out any wet items, particularly structural materials like walls and flooring. Call SERVPRO® of NE Albuquerque at 505-828-3567 to extract water and mitigate any mold growth. Our franchise professionals have the training and experience to make flood damage “Like it never even happened.” 

Content Restoration Costs

11/10/2016 (Permalink)

Factors Affecting Content Restoration Costs

The cost of content restoration is determined by the number and type of items as well as the type of damage.  Specific procedures are used to restore wood furniture, books, and other types of items.  The procedures used will affect your final cost.

Optional Services

Some content restoration services include delivery with their service while others charge extra.  The reviews on RestorationMasterFinder.com can tell you about different content restoration services’ delivery policies.  You can always ask if you aren’t sure if delivery is included in your content restoration quote.

Some sensitive items like antiques, fine art, or other specialty items will cost more to be cleaned because of the delicate nature of the process.

 

12 Home Repairs That Are Way Too Risky to Put Off

10/19/2016 (Permalink)

Nobody ever cheers at the thought of tackling home repairs. They’re annoying, costly, time-sucking endeavors. So often we put them off, over and over, justifying to ourselves that they can wait. Light switch doesn’t work? Whatever—you never go in that room anyway. Squeaky floors? You’re already used to them!

But there are some home improvement projects that simply can’t wait, lest you risk much bigger problems (and costly expenses) down the line. Here are 12 home repairs experts say you should never put off:

1. A leaking roof

If you see water stains on your ceiling or down your walls, get moving on the repair stat—there are a host of problems that can arise and get progressively worse with a leaking roof.

“Not repairing a leak as soon as you notice it can lead to mold, damage to the structure of your home, water damage, and even fire if water comes in contact with electrical wiring,” says Carlos de León, vice president of the León Group, an estate management company on Long Island, NY. Scared yet? Good.

2. Damaged or missing shingles

This one seems obvious, but Derek Perzylo, owner of Big 5 Exteriors in Calgary, Canada, says he regularly encounters homeowners who have never had their roof inspected.

“After a big storm, especially if there’s a lot of gusting wind and hail, it’s always a good idea to visually inspect your roof,” he says. “If you see shingles out of place, or if you see shingles on the ground, you might have some damage that could cause potential problems, like leaks, down the road.”

3. Sagging roof

Roof sagging can be caused by moisture in the attic space, says Joe Todaro, director of operations at Gold Medal Service in East Brunswick, NJ. If left untreated, the structure of the wood will weaken and settle, causing cracks in the exterior walls. Proper ventilation is essential for an attic.

4. Cracks in the foundation

Your home’s foundation may develop small cracks over time, and it’s best to address them to prevent spreading. Otherwise you might have to replace the foundation, which can cost as much as $100,000. Large cracks that go unaddressed can lead to everything from leaking to parts of the concrete collapsing.

“The damage could be life-threatening if your home is not supported properly,” León says.

5. Gas leaks

Silent but deadly

BanksPhotos/iStock

Since natural gas and propane are heavier than air, they “pool” in the low points of your home. The second you smell gas (a telltale rotten egg–like smell), call your gas company and vacate the premises until a company worker arrives.

“You risk having an explosion or fire by not doing something about a gas leak immediately,” León says.

6. Plumbing leaks

Leaking water can lead to mold, structural problems, and health issues. Homeowners should check under sinks at least once a year to ensure no water is leaking into the cabinets. If you see any, call a plumber right away.

7. Mold

Is there good mold and bad mold? Not really. When you see it, deal with it. And simply having a “mold remediation” company come in to assess things is not the entire answer, says Jeff Wilson, HGTV host and author of “The Greened House Effect.”

“The reason the mold formed in the first place needs to be sussed out and the problem fixed by a building science professional trained by an organization like Building Performance Institute,” he says.

So just to be clear: While not all molds are life-threatening, all of them—even the ubiquitous shower mold—can potentially make you sick. So it’s best to be aggressive no matter what kind you see.

8. Overtaxed or poor electrical systems

More than 40,000 electrical fires occur each year in the United States. And most of them could have been easily avoided. Some warning signs of faulty electrical work include circuit breakers blowing unexpectedly, lights flickering, and outlets and/or switches being warm or hot to the touch. Not calling an electrician can result in your home catching fire. Got it? Call the electrician.

9. Clogged gutters

Clogged gutters are easy to ignore, but they can cause substantial damage to your home if you don’t make it your business to keep them clean.

The role of gutters and drainpipes is to draw rainfall away from the home. If they’re stopped up, water begins to pool in vulnerable areas. You’ll face a higher risk for wood rot around the fascia and for foundation damage in low, sloped areas around the perimeter of your home.

Homeowners should clean out their gutters twice a year and water test them with a garden hose afterward. Make sure the water travels easily through the gutter system, into the drainpipe, and away from the home’s foundation.

10. Cracked driveways

Most driveways are pitched to direct water away from your foundation. If there are cracks and settling in your driveway, not only are they a tripping hazard, they could also lead to possible water damage in your home.

11. Damaged decks

The No. 1 danger spot with decks is when there’s worn or missing flashing, the thin layer of material that keeps water from getting into places it doesn’t belong. Without flashing, water can get into the ledger board (which connects the deck to the house) and weaken the wood and metal fasteners that hold the deck together. And if a weakened deck is overloaded, it can have expensive—if not deadly—consequences.

12. Clogged dryer vents

Removing the lint from your dryer vent isn’t just one of those things your mama nagged you to do. It could mean the difference between life and death.

So you have your work cut out for you. The good news is that you don’t have to do many of these repairs frequently. But when you see warning signs, get going pronto—or risk bigger problems down the road.

Safety Tips for Winter Activities

12/30/2015 (Permalink)

Winter recreational activities may help fight off cabin fever, but they also can be dangerous. Before heading outside, brush up on these safety tips for the slopes, rink, and more.

Dressing the Part

Staying warm is important for all winter activities. Protect yourself from hypothermia by wearing polypropylene undergarments — which absorb sweat but also retain heat — and layers of water- and wind-resistant clothing. And don't forget the essentials: hats, gloves or mittens, wool socks, and waterproof boots.

Hitting the Slopes

These safety tips can help reduce your chances of injury when you're downhill skiing or snowboarding:

  • Take lessons on how to stop, slow down and turn.
  • Never ski or snowboard alone.
  • Always wear a certified helmet with wraparound goggles.
  • Secure loose straps or clothing.
  • Identify the appropriate trails for your skill level.
  • Check your equipment before and after each run.
  • Skating Outdoors

    Keep these safety guidelines in mind when ice-skating or playing hockey outside:

  • Stick to ice at least 6 inches thick and free of ice fishing holes and other debris.
  • Avoid ice that has formed over running water, such as a river.
  • Always wear a helmet: Hockey helmets offer the best protection.
  • Wear proper hockey equipment, including pads and gloves.
  • Learn how to properly fall on ice.
  • Snowmobile Cruising

    Inexperience and poor judgment are both leading causes of snowmobile crashes. Learn how to ride safely:

  • If you are a novice, consider taking a snowmobile or snow machine safety training course before your first outing.
  • Wear a helmet that meets the current Department of Transportation certification standards.
  • Wear appropriate cold weather gear, such as a snowmobile suit, snow bib, jackets, and gloves, to cut the wind, repel water and allow ventilation.
  • Always go snowmobiling in groups and notify someone at home where the group is headed and the expected return time.
  • Always check the weather conditions before departing.
  • If traveling in mountainous terrain, check for "Avalanche Conditions."
  • Know the area where you're riding, if possible. There may be hazards, such as washouts (melted snow, flowing water or erosion impacting the trail, road or field), fences and drop-offs in unfamiliar areas.
  • Before departing, check your machine's fuel and fluid levels to make sure they are sufficient for the trip. You should also check the machine's overall condition and operation.
  • Never drive too fast for your comfort level, and keep speeds below 40 miles per hour at night.
  • Stay on designated trails.
  • Avoid driving on ice, but if it's the only option, wear a lifejacket.
  • Always ride sober, which includes avoiding prescription medications that may affect how you ride.
  • Be cautious when crossing roadways.
  • Never approach wildlife.
  • Carry a first-aid kit, water and non-perishable food in case of a mishap on the trail.
  • Source: https://learningcenter.statefarm.com/safety-2/family-1/safety-tips-for-winter-activities/index.html?cmpid=enews-dec15#sthash.e6T1EjVt.dpuf

    13 Home Improvements Illegal to DIY

    11/13/2015 (Permalink)

    Switch Up a Cooktop 

    Is it true that you are considering changing from an electric extent to a gas stove and introducing the apparatus yourself? Reconsider. This is a venture for one, as well as two experts that need to meet codes and investigate the completed item. A gas stove requires both power and gas to work appropriately, so procure a handyman to introduce the gas line and an electrical expert to change the electrical circuit. Something else, this genuinely simple transformation could have dangerous outcomes. 

    Bother Old Protection 

    In the event that you claim a more established home, the upper room protection could be polluted with the harmful substance asbestos. While it's conceivable to do a DIY asbestos evacuation, it's not suggested. There is various laws set up to control the evacuation of asbestos in light of the risks it postures to those in close closeness, including you, your family, and your neighbors. Things being what they are, what's the arrangement? Procure an asbestos decrease group. 

    Repair Your HVAC Framework 

    Repairing or supplanting a HVAC framework is hazardous. While it might entice to settle it yourself, it's most likely best on the off chance that you don't. Freon breaks are perilous, bringing about discombobulation, asphyxia, and other respiratory issues. Aerating and cooling and warming upkeep requires an authorized proficient who has experienced a thorough preparing and affirmation process. Furthermore, a producer may void your guarantee on the off chance that you, a property holder without fitting authorizing, were to deal with the framework. 

    Supplant a Boiling hot Water Tank 

    While introducing or supplanting a water warmer may appear like a DIY suited for the weekend warrior, pondering 240 volts of power or complaining with gas lines, which could bring about a hazardous break, is not work for the unpracticed. In light of the grants, code adherences, wellbeing regulations, and dangers—like conceivable carbon monoxide discharges—an authorized handyman is required to tackle this home assignment. 

    Pump the Septic Framework 

    Let's be realistic: Of all the home errands, this is one of the more disagreeable. In any case, notwithstanding being unenjoyably, working with the septic tank requires particular gear and additionally allows to discard the waste legitimately. The main do-it-without anyone's help step you have to bring with this assignment is to get the telephone and call an expert. 

    Interface with Natural life 

    Has a rat taken up living arrangement in your rafters? Before wrangling the threat yourself, understand this: A few species, for example, raccoons, skunks, and bats, are inclined to convey rabies and have lawful results on the off chance that they are hurt or caught and moved without the assistance of an expert. Try not to hazard disease; contact a natural life control organization. These authorized experts will evacuate the creatures, secure the openings, wipe out homes, and dispose of waste. It's essentially not worth taking a chance with your security. 

    Thump Out a Divider 

    In case you're planning to change your design to an open floor arrangement, or simply need somewhat additional room, uprooting a divider may be on your rundown of things to do. In any case, reconsider before swinging that heavy hammer. A few urban areas require licenses if the divider being referred to is basic, and on the off chance that you don't bring in an authority for a discussion previously, you could be doing significant harm to the trustworthiness of your home. 

    Tinker with Light Installations 

    In case you're hoping to supplant or include light installations that will influence the electrical wiring, it's ideal to bring in a circuit tester than have a go at it yourself. In the event that you don't acquire the best possible allows or have it introduced by an expert, the insurance agency has grounds to deny your case in the possibility of a house flame—and defective wiring is one of the main sources of private flames. 

    Introduce a Bay window 

    Sky facing windows require cutting an opening, introducing an edge, and fitting a window into the rooftop. The establishment generally must be finished by an ace, or must take after the producer's directions to the letter, generally the guarantee may be voided. Additionally with the precarious incline and the amazing tallness, it's imperative to contract an expert—two, really. You'll require a roofer's experience and a window organization's specific devices and ability to take care of business securely and successfully. 

    Evacuate Toxic Paint 

    Owning an object from olden times farmhouse may appear like a fantasy, however evacuating the lead paint could be a bad dream. Seventy-five percent of homes constructed before 1978 may contain toxic paint, which is a significant issue for even the most experienced of experts. It's ideal to call a qualified master than to chance your life to spare a couple bucks. 

    Chopped Down an Extensive Tree 

    At the point when an extensive tree should be chopped down, it's ideal to abstain from directing your inward logger. Rather, leave huge tree evacuation to a guaranteed arborist that is acquainted with city laws and conveys heaps of obligation protection that can deal with risks or mischances you may not be furnished to manage—for instance, if the tree falls in an unpredicted way.  

    Supplant a Carport Entryway Spring 

    After some time, carport entryway springs lose their strain and should be supplanted, however the first and only steps require discharging and giving back the pressure to the spring. One wrong move and that spring could go rushing toward your body, bringing about genuine, even lethal damage. To keep away from such possibly unsafe mischances, call a carport entryway establishment pro. 

    Take Out Termites 

    Termite issues cost property proprietors more than $5 billion a year. Here and there this harm may not be secured by your insurance agency and, shockingly, a boundless infestation can't be battled with locally acquired arrangements. Rather, act quickly and call an exterminator who has admittance to the most strong items, which are accessible just to professionals.