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A Step-by-Step Comprehensive Water Damage Restoration Guide

By | Water | 4 Comments

The Basics of Water Damage Restoration

Dealing with water damage in a home or business can be confusing and frustrating; the water damage restoration process is just a pain! Water causes a lot of damage and makes a huge mess that can turn into a major headache.  It may seem like all hope is lost and the house or office will have to be gutted, but that’s often far from the truth.

Water damage comes in various shapes and forms, from small leaks to all-out flooding. [Water Damage 101] They all have the potential to be remediated, but understanding the categories of water damage is important. It’s also important to know that water damage is broken down into classes depending on the methods it will take to fix the problem.

Categories of Water Damage

Water Damage Categories

Water Damage Categories

Classes of Water Damage

Water Damage Classes

Water Damage Classes

Causes of Water Damage

Water damage can occur at any time and anywhere. It doesn’t discriminate and will more than likely happen when the homeowner least expects it. Some of the most common causes of water damage in Miami include the following:

  • Broken pipes
  • Backed up drains or toilets
  • Flooding

If any of these common water damage occurrences happen, you may need to call a professional to help remediate the situation. They have the expertise, experience, and equipment to ensure that the process is done right, with minimal health risks to the occupants of the home or office building.

Water Damage Restoration Equipment

There are some common and expected types of equipment carried by water restoration technicians. They often include detection equipment, air moving equipment, deodorization equipment, and generators. They each have a specific purpose and are used to get your house or office dry and back to pre-damaged condition. [Before The Restoration]

Detection Equipment: Moisture Sensors and Meters

These are used by technicians to discover how wet an area is so they know exactly what will need to be done to remediate the situation. These sensors and meters display the moisture content of floors, ceilings, walls, and other materials so a plan can be developed to get them dry or tear them out—whichever is needed most for the situation.

Air Moving Equipment: Fans and Dehumidifiers

Getting an area dry requires removing the moisture not only from the affected materials but also from the air. Fans will blow air across the surface and cause the water to evaporate, then the dehumidifiers will draw it out of the air and drain it so that it won’t settle back into the material and cause further damage to the room.

Deodorization Equipment

Air Scrubber: This machine works by removing chemicals, particles, and/or gasses from the air. It draws in air from the surrounding space and pushes it through various filters to remove the contaminants that contribute to odor.

Foggers: These machines turn a chemical into a fog to eliminate odors from a room. They can also be used to kill bacteria or as a way to reduce or discourage mold growth after water damage has occurred.

Thermal Foggers: These machines work by using a solvent-based deodorizer that is heated and turned into a dry smoke/fog, which is blown into a room. The vaporized cleaning solution clings to the odor molecules and absorbs them, ridding the area of the smell. When combined with cleaning, this is an effective deodorizing technique.

Generators: In the case of water damages that cause the loss of power, it’s important for the technicians to have a power supply. They generally have generators so that the equipment can be used properly to repair the damage.

What to Expect Before and After a Water Damage Restoration Cleanup Process

No two water restoration jobs are the same. They are each unique and require different techniques and cleanup methods. It’s possible to clean water damage yourself, but there could be deeper issues that you are unaware that a professional would be better able to handle. Finding a professional Miami restoration company that will work with you is important, and there’s a process to ensuring you find one that will restore your property to pre-damage condition.

How do you choose a reputable restoration company?

Having your home damaged by water is an incredibly stressful and emotional experience. Getting it back to a pre-disaster condition is important, and finding a restoration company that can do that is a top priority. But how do you choose a reputable restoration company?

  1. Look Locally

Finding a company who works locally in the Miami area will mean that they’ll be able to get to your house or business as soon as possible to assess the damage and get started on the restoration process.

  1. Check Credentials

Restoring a home or office after water damage is accomplished by following industry standards. A good company will send their technicians to training to get them certified. The business itself should also be certified. When looking for a restoration professional, look for one that has been IIRC certified and has the skill and expertise to deal with water damage in ways that are nationally recognized and approved.

This will also ensure that the technicians are trained in the proper use of all water restoration equipment and can employ advanced water restoration methodologies. Since no two water restoration jobs are the same, you need someone who can think on their feet and complete the job satisfactorily and within industry standards.

  1. Works with Insurance

When a major disaster like a water damage strikes, the cost for restoration can be expensive. Very few people will be able to pay for the damage out of their pocket, so they’ll rely on their insurance to help cover the bill. A good restoration company will work with insurance to get your home or office back together. If they don’t, you need to keep looking.

In addition, you may also consider contacting your insurance agent to see if they have a restoration company that they recommend. This will ensure that you are getting a reputable company that you know will work with your insurance to get the job completed.

  1. Check References

It’s easier than ever to check reviews and references online. Finding these for a restoration company shouldn’t be difficult. While no company will ever have all positive reviews, make sure the company you’re looking to hire has more positive than negative reviews.

Water Damage Restoration Timeline

  1. Inspection

The first step in the restoration process is knowing exactly what has been damaged and what needs to be fixed. This is when they will use their moisture sensors and meters to see how far the damage goes and how wet the area is, including the ceiling, walls, and carpet/carpet pad or other flooring. It will also be determined whether or not the electricity is in jeopardy or has been shorted out by the water. Turning power sources off at the electrical box may or may not occur depending on the extent of the damage.

During this time, it’s important to talk with the technician and find out exactly what needs to be done to correct the water damage issues. There may be tear-out that will occur, and it’s important to know beforehand who will be doing repairs at the completion of the job.

  1. Remove Standing Water

If there is standing water in the area, this will be removed. No other work will be able to continue if the water remains in the area. This will also allow the technicians to find the source of the issue (if it’s coming from a broken pipe or backed up drain) so that the issue can be taken care of. [During The Restoration]

  1. Prevent Further Damage

Taking care of water damage needs to be done in a timely fashion. If it sits for too long, there’s a chance that more damage will occur or a Category 1 water damage will turn into a Category 2, which can have impacts on your health.

This step may include calling a plumber (if one hasn’t already been called) to discover and stop any leaks. It may also require the removal of affected flooring, walls, and ceiling. Water damage can weaken the integrity of certain structural materials, making them a hazard if they collapse. In some cases, this material may not be able to dry properly, so to prevent water remaining trapped in the area, it will be removed.

  1. Drying

After the standing water has been removed and materials that could pose a drying or structural hazard have been removed, the drying process will begin. This often involves placing fans and a dehumidifier in the area. In some cases, it might also involve putting up plastic sheeting and using heaters so that the water can evaporate.

If walls have been impacted, it may be necessary to remove baseboards or drill holes so that they dry properly. A section of the carpet may also have to be lifted so that the carpet and the pad will dry. If these processes aren’t conducted, the chance of odor and mold growth increases. There’s also a chance of structural damage happening from excessive moisture.

  1. Monitoring

Throughout the entire process, the technicians will monitor how well the drying is going. They’ll use their meters to test the moisture content in the affected areas and ensure that their equipment is working properly. Depending on the severity of the damage, this process may take from one day to several.

  1. Completion

Once the meters read moisture levels equal to the previous dry state of the room, the technician will remove the fans and dehumidifiers from the area. At this point, the water remediation process is considered to complete.

  1. Repair Additional Damage

As mentioned, sometimes ceilings, walls, or flooring have to be torn out, baseboards might be removed, or holes might be drilled into walls to ensure proper drying. The water restoration company may do these repairs themselves or they may subcontract the work to professionals they use for this type of job. They may also recommend contractors for the homeowner to contact. Owners may also be able to use their own contractors if they so choose.

Having this conversation during the inspection phase of the process will let the homeowner or business owner know what to expect when this phase is finally reached.

Health and Safety During the Water Damage Restoration Process

Ways to keep yourself safe in the event of water damage.

Health & Safety During The Water Damage Process

Health & Safety During The Water Damage Process

Health & Safety During The Water Damage Process

Health & Safety During The Water Damage Process

What to Expect After the Cleanup Process

Depending on the severity of the water damage, what happens after the cleanup process will vary.[After The Restoration]  If the water damage was caused by clean water, the only thing that might be required is drying the area and then putting things back in their place. If the water damage was large or involved grey or black water, the following might occur.

Sanitation and Cleaning

Once the water has been removed and everything is dry, the restoration company may go through and do a final cleaning that involves sanitizing to remove the possibility of bacterial growth and deodorizing to rid the home or office of any unwanted odors due to the water damage.

Mold Growth

After any type of water damage, the possibility of mold growth increases. Ensuring that the area was properly dried and then sanitized should reduce this likelihood. However, it’s not always possible to prevent all growth, but a good restoration company will have the skills and expertise to remove any mold that grows as a result of water damage.

Reconstruction

If anything was torn out such as flooring, walls, or the ceiling, these will need to be repaired and/or replaced. The restoration company may have the expertise to take care of small jobs, but they may also recommend or have subcontractors that will complete reconstruction.

Insurance Claims

Most insurance companies and restoration companies work well together when it comes to addressing water damage in Miami. They are often in contact to get information about how the job is progressing and if there are any issues that need to be addressed. Some restoration companies will even send the invoice and work orders directly to the insurance company so that the owner doesn’t have to worry about that. In some cases, the insurance will also pay the restoration company directly. Talking to your agent will let you know how this process will be handled.

Should You Hire an Adjuster

Deciding whether or not to hire an adjuster for your claim will depend on a variety of things, including if you’re actually going to file a claim and  if the damage is covered by your insurance policy. There are benefits from hiring an adjuster, but there could also be downsides as well, and you’ll need to determine if one outweighs the other.

At Total Care Restoration, we have the expertise and certification to help you with your Miami water damage needs. We are available 24/7 and 365 days a year, so give us a call so we can help you get your life and your home or business back to pre-disaster condition.

Tips, Advice, and Checklist

Emergency Drying Tips

Emergency Drying Tips

Emergency Water Damage Tips

Emergency Water Damage Tips

Water Damage Insurance Tips

Water Damage Insurance Tips

Water Cleanup Checklist

Water Cleanup Checklist

What Happens After The Water Damage Restoration Process

By | Water | No Comments
After The Water Damage Process

After The Water Damage Process

The length of time it takes to restore water damage in Miami will depend on the severity of the destruction and how many rooms were impacted. Some losses are small, only impacting part of a room and involving little to no water. Other losses could affect an entire home and involve large amounts of standing water.

If the damage was caused by clean water, efforts that might be required include drying the area and then putting items back in their place. If the destruction was large or caused by grey or black water, the process might be more involved and include the following.

What to Expect After the Cleanup Process

Sanitation and Cleaning

After the water has been sucked out and the area is dry, the restoration company may do a final cleaning that involves sanitizing so that bacteria can’t grow and ridding the home or office of any unwanted smells due to water damage in Miami with a deodorizer. This may involve cleaning the affected walls or flooring, including a carpet cleaning for any impacted carpet and carpet pad.

Getting rid of bacterial growth and other substances that may have been present in the water is important for the health of the occupants. If these pathogens aren’t removed, it could lead to illness and continued bacterial growth, which could contribute to a foul odor in the area. 

Mold Growth

Mold thrives in moist environments, and those are created after water damage. To prevent this from occurring, it’s important that an area is dried properly and then sanitized. Unfortunately, preventing all mold growth may not be possible, but a good restoration company will be able to remove any mold that grows and inform the home or business owner about the likelihood of this occurring.

There are a variety of different molds that exist in the world. The most feared is black mold. There have been studies and tests that have shown this mold can cause health problems. In reality, any type of mold can have detrimental impacts. If an individual is allergic to mold, it will impact their health. Various types of mold can grow in places that are damp—conditions that are certainly created after water damage in Miami. Taking care of all mold growth is the best way to protect people’s health.

Reconstruction

During some water losses, the flooring, walls, or ceiling may have been torn out due to damage or the inability for it to dry properly.  Eventually, these will need to be repaired and/or replaced. It’s possible that the restoration company will take care of small jobs, but they may also leave any and all reconstruction to a subcontractor they work with or recommend one for you to contact.

This is often discussed during the first stage of the mitigation process so that you know exactly what’s going on. If an insurance claim has been filed, it will also be discussed with the insurance agent, and they may have a say in whether or not things will be torn out or dried to the best of their ability. Open communication and asking questions are the best ways to get answers for this process.

Insurance Claims

It is common to find insurance companies and restoration companies working together during this process. They remain in contact to obtain information about the job and if any issues have arisen that need to be fixed. In some cases, the restoration company will send the invoice and/or work orders directly to the insurance company. It’s also possible that the insurance will pay the restoration company directly. Talking to the restoration technician or your agent is the best way to find out how this process will be handled for water damage in Miami.

When all work has been completed, there is generally a walk-through that occurs with the home or business owner, the insurance adjustor or agent, and the technicians. This will ensure that all work has been completed satisfactorily and meets the expected standards. [A Step-by-Step Water Damage Restoration Guide]  If it does not, a plan will be put in place to correct any issues. If it does, the job will be finished.

Total Restoration Care has certified experts who want to help you with your water damage in Miami. We are on call 24/7, 365 days a year.

What Happens During The Water Damage Process

By | Water | No Comments
During The Water Damage Restoration Process

During The Water Damage Restoration Process

If a professional restoration company is called upon to help with water damage in Miami, there is a process and industry standards that will be followed to ensure the job is done right and the house or office is put back to pre-disaster conditions. [Step-by-Step Water Damage Restoration Guide]

There are common types of equipment carried by water restoration technicians. They often include detection equipment, air moving equipment, deodorization equipment, and generators.

Detection Equipment: Moisture Sensors and Meters

Technicians use sensors and meters to determine how wet an area is. They measure and display the moisture content of floors, ceilings, walls, and other materials so the technician can decide the best way to dry them out or if they need to be torn out.

Air Moving Equipment: Fans and Dehumidifiers

Drying an area requires removing the moisture from the affected materials and also from the air. Air from a fan blowing across the surface causes water to evaporate, then a dehumidifier draws that moisture out of the air and drains it so that it can’t find its way back into the material, potentially causing further damage.

Deodorization Equipment

Air Scrubber: This machine removes chemicals, particles, and/or gasses from the air. Drawing in air from the surrounding space, it then forces it through numerous filters to remove contaminants that cause odor.

Foggers: These machines eliminate odors by transforming chemicals into a fog. In addition, they are also used to kill bacteria or to reduce or stop mold growth after water damage has occurred.

Thermal Foggers: These machines heat a solvent-based deodorizer that is turned into a dry smoke/fog, which is then blown into a room. Clinging to odor molecules, the vaporized cleaning solution absorbs them to rid the area of the smell. Combining a thermal fogger with cleaning is an effective way to deodorize an area.

Generators: When water damage in Miami causes the loss of power, the technicians still need a power supply. They carry generators so that the equipment has a power source to run the fans and dehumidifiers so everything can be dried to pre-damage condition.

Ways to Keep Yourself Safe in the Event of Water Damage

When Damage Is First Discovered:

  1. Determine what kind of water it is: clean, grey, or black. If grey or black, do not try to clean yourself. Call a professional immediately.
  1. Shut off the main water valve (if necessary)
  1. Shut off the electrical
  1. If water has come through the ceiling, stay out of the room until it has been determined by a professional that the structure is safe and won’t collapse
  1. Call a professional restoration company to assess the damage and put together a plan for mitigation

During the Damage Restoration Process:

  1. Keep lines of communication open with the restoration company and insurance
  1. Abide by rules about fans and drying equipment explained by restoration technicians
  1. Do not touch restoration drying equipment unless instructed to do so

Water Damage Restoration Cleanup Checklist

  • Find sources of water
  • Stop the water source or turn off the main water valve
  • If dealing with flooring that’s not carpeted, place down towels to avoid slipping
  • Contact insurance agent
  • Contact water restoration company
  • Remove objects impacted by the water damage, including rugs and other loose items on the floor
  • Elevate or remove furniture (if possible)
  • Remove excess water by blotting with towels or mopping
  • Open doors and windows and turn on fans to get air circulating and the drying process started (unless mold is present, then do not turn on fans)
  • Dry furniture by blotting or wiping it down
  • If walls are wet, point fans directly at them to dry the water
  • You may need to lift part of the carpet if the pad underneath is wet so that it will dry
  • Hardwood floors and other flooring types may need to be removed if water has soaked underneath to prevent buckling
  • Continue running fans until help arrives or the area is dry

At Total Care Restoration , we are available 24/7 and 365 days a year for water damage in Miami. We have experienced and skilled technicians to remediate any size job. Give us a call and we’ll get your life and your home or business back to pre-disaster condition.

What Happens Before The Water Damage Process

By | Water | No Comments
Before The Restoration Water Damage Restoration Proces

Before The Restoration Water Damage Restoration Proces

Understanding what happens before the water damage restoration process occurs can be perplexing.  You may find yourself going through an incredibly emotional and difficult experience. Getting your home or office back to the way it was will be foremost on your mind, as will finding a restoration company that can help you through the process. [Step by Step Water Damage Restoration Guide]

How do you choose a reputable water damage restoration company?

  1. Look Locally

A company who works locally will be able to get to your house or business quickly to assess the damage and start the restoration process. This can be important in preventing further damage from occurring.

  1. Check Credentials

There are industry standards that exist that determine how a home or office should be restored after water damage. A company that has been IIRC certified will be skilled in those standards and have nationally recognized and approved expertise to deal with water damage in Miami.

  1. Works with Insurance

The cost for water damage restoration can be expensive. If a company won’t work with your insurance company or forces you to be the go-between for communication, you might consider looking for another restoration company.

  1. Check References

Finding company reviews and references online is easy. No company will ever have all positive reviews (and you should be a little suspicious if they do), but they should have more positive than negative reviews.

Water Damage Timeline

  1. Inspection

The first step in the restoration process is inspecting the damage and determining what needs to be fixed. Restoration technicians use moisture sensors and meters to see how wet an area is and how far the damage goes. They will test the ceiling, walls, and carpet/carpet pad or other flooring.

During the inspection, talking with the technician will allow you to find out exactly what needs to be done and what will be done to correct the destruction. If tear-out needs to occur, finding out who will be doing repairs at the end of the job is important.

  1. Remove Standing Water

Standing water will be removed so that any other needed work will be able to continue.

  1. Prevent Further Damage

Taking care of water damage in Miami needs to be accomplished in a timely manner. This step may include calling a plumber (if one is needed) to take care of any leaks or pipe breaks. Affected flooring, walls, and ceiling may also need to be removed. The integrity of certain structural materials could be weakened by water damage. If this material can’t be dried properly, it will be removed.

  1. Drying

This step often involves placing fans and a dehumidifier into the affected area. In some cases, plastic sheeting and heaters might be placed to aid in the evaporation and subsequent drying.

It may be necessary to remove baseboards or drill holes in walls so that they dry properly. Part of the carpet may also have to be raised to allow the carpet and/or the pad to dry. The chance of odor and mold growth increases if these processes aren’t followed. Structural damage could also occur from excessive moisture.

  1. Monitoring

From the moment the call is made until the area is dry, the technicians will monitor the progress. Using their meters, they’ll test the moisture levels and monitor their equipment to ensure it is working properly. This process may take from one day to several depending on the severity of the damage.

  1. Completion

Eventually, the meters will show that the moisture levels are equal to the previous dry state of the room, and the fans and dehumidifiers will be removed from the area. This is the point in time when the water remediation process is considered complete.

  1. Repair Additional Damage

Depending on the work that needs to be completed, the water restoration company may do it themselves or contact a subcontractor. If they don’t have a subcontractor that works for them, they may recommend contractors for the homeowner to contact. If you have your own contractor, you will be able to contact them if you so choose.

At Total Restoration Care, our technicians have the certification and expertise to help you with water damage in Miami. Contact us today for your restoration needs.

Water Damage 101

By | Water | No Comments
Water Damage 101

Water Damage 101

Water damage can be caused by small leaks or a flood. Dealing with water damage in a Miami home or business can be stressful, frustrating, and emotional. A lot of destruction is caused by water, and it can be incredibly messy. There are different categories of water damage and understanding these, as well as water damage classes, will give you an idea of how the problem can be mitigated. [A Step by Step Water Damage Restoration Guide]

Categories of Water Damage

Category 1

Sometimes referred to as clean water damage, this type of water damage occurs when a water line, faucet, toilet tank, drinking fountain or other source springs a leak or breaks. This water is considered clean because it is not contaminated with debris or other pathogens. However, if this issue is not cleaned up quickly and efficiently, it can absolutely turn into a bigger problem.

Category 2

Category 2 has substances in it that may cause discomfort or illness if ingested. It may be called grey water damage. This water can come from sources such as washing machines, dishwashers, toilets with urine and no feces, or other places where the water has been used.

Category 3

This water contains contaminants that are unsanitary and dangerous. If ingested, this water could cause serious illness or even death in extreme cases. It may be referred to as unsanitary or black water damage. This water often comes from a sewer backup, streams or rivers that have overflowed, toilets that contained feces, or water that has become stagnant and allowed bacteria to grow.

Classes of Water Damage in Miami

Class 1

Water damage in this class has the least amount of water, absorption, and evaporation. The damage only impacts part of a room or area. If a larger space is affected, the materials in that space have absorbed little to no moisture. There is little or no wet carpet and/or carpet pad present.

Class 2

This classification involves a large amount of water, absorption, and evaporation. At least the entire room is affected, and the carpet and pad are wet. In addition, water will have gone up the walls to less than 24 inches. Moisture will also be present in substructure soil and structural materials.

Class 3

This classification incorporates the greatest amount of water, absorption, and evaporation. The entire room or area will have ceilings, walls, insulation, carpet, carpet pads, and subflooring that is saturated with water that possibly could have come from overhead.

Class 4

This classification is reserved for drying situations that require special methods or longer drying times. It may include materials with low permeance or porosity such as hardwood, stone, plaster, brick, or concrete. In general, deep pockets of saturation exist that require low specific humidity.

Knowing the categories and classes of water damage in Miami will give you a better idea of the different places this fluid can come from and how it impacts your home or office. It also allows you to realize that the extent of damage can be minimal to severe and cleaning up may be as simple as using a few towels to blot up the mess or calling in professionals to help.

Causes of Water Damage in Miami

There’s really no way to prepare for water damage, but there are ways to deal with it after it has occurred. Bad weather conditions can contribute to water damage, including heavy rains that get in through leaky roofs or poorly sealed foundations, as can flooding. Some other common causes of water problems include backed up sinks or toilets and broken pipes.

Depending on the size of the damage, you may need to call in an expert to fix the problem. Finding a restoration company that has the expertise, experience, and equipment to ensure that the process is done right and reduces the health risks to the occupants of the home or office building is important.

Water damage in Miami can also come from another source: hurricanes. Being prepared for this natural disaster is important, and taking some steps may help reduce the amount of destruction that occurs.

When it comes to damage caused by water, it’s never an easy or fun thing to deal with. Depending on the type of water that gets into the home and how much floods the area, the structure and occupant health may be compromised. Getting this issue remediated quickly and efficiently is important.

Technicians at Total Care Restoration have the expertise to help you with your water damage needs. We are available 24/7 and can be at your home or business night or day to remediate the water damage and get your life back in order.

Hurricane Michael

Hurricane Michael And Water Damage

By | Water | 2 Comments

Hurricane Michael And Water Damage

Intro

Hurricane Michael a category 4 hurricane made land fall in the Florida Panhandle. When it arrived, it was record braking hurricane. Many areas in the Panhandle were hit very hard.

Mexico Beach has been destroyed by the damage…

https://www.cnn.com/2018/10/11/us/hurricane-michael-tropical-storm-wxc/index.html

Panama City was hit by 150 miles per hour winds and there is damage everywhere:

https://www.msnbc.com/morning-joe/watch/hurricane-michael-devastates-panama-city-1341670979783?v=raila&

And many of the surrounding beaches, towns and cities where hit. 

Water Damage In Panama City

Water Damage In Panama City

 

Residents Need Help

Many residents were left without water and electricity. The images are of the clean up show that there is significant help that is needed.

Large companies like Apple have announce that they will be donating money for Hurricane Michael relief:

https://www.cnet.com/news/tim-cook-apple-will-donate-to-hurricane-michael-relief/

 

Our Team Is There To Help

We are a Miami based water damage restoration company, and we have deployed a specialized team from South Florida to areas affected.

Their main job is to help with clean up of any residential or commercial property that has been affected.

We are ready to help every community in need, and we feel a responsibility to assist. We will be helping with water damage clean up in Panama City & Tallahassee areas. 

InsInstalling A Roof Tarp

Installing A Roof Tarp

 

Tarp A Roof

Many people will have damage in their roofs. A great way to avoid water damage to your home is to put a tarp. We will be helping residents with tarp installation, so if you have a roof leak please give us a call.

In addition, here are a few articles that may help if you were hit by the storm:

 

Insurance Claims

First of all, insurance claims are the main way that a home or business owner can get back on track from all the devastation. We have helped hundreds of clients with their claims through the years. And we will be ready to help you.

We work with all insurance companies like:

  • Citizens
  • Universal
  • People’s Trust

If you have insurance but you are not sure if the damage you had is covered we can point you in the right direction.

Call us at: (305) 428-2192

 

Water Damage

Water Damage

Many people do not realize that water damage is one of the most devastating effects of a hurricane. Yes the winds destroy many roofs and structures, but water gets everywhere and it is very hard to deal with.

Water damage can be cause by:

  • Flooding
  • Blown Off Roofs
  • Roof Leaks
  • Cracks
  • Busted Pipes

Not only water can cause damage, but you also have to worry about dangerous mold growing. Do not neglect the water because if mold grows it is extremely hard to get rid off.

 

Contact us if you need help in your community!

Leaving Town Before Hurricane Season? Do This First

By | Water | No Comments
Leaving Town

Leaving Town

Hurricane season can do a number on your property. We’ve already seen massive storms like Hurricane Harvey and Maria wreak havoc on homes across the East Coast and the Gulf of Mexico. But as these southern coastal areas heat up for the summer, you might be thinking of leaving town during the height of hurricane season. If you won’t be around for any potential storms, make sure you prepare your home for hurricane season by doing the following:

Clean Out Your Gutters

Water will collect on the roof of your home if there are a bunch of leaves and debris in your gutters. This can overwhelm the structure of your home, leading to leaks and structural damage. Make sure you clear away this debris before you skip town for the season.

You don’t want to come home to see a bunch of water collecting on the roof of your home, or worse, a massive leak in your living room or bedroom. Cleaning out your gutters won’t cost you a cent, just an hour or two of your time.

Move Valuables Away from the Windows

You’ll also want to move your valuables and furniture away from the windows while you’re out of town.

Windows can turn into danger zones during hurricane season. You can even go so far as to buy window guards or covers, but if you don’t have the time or money, make sure nothing of value is in harm’s way. The carpet, drapes or furniture could get wet while you’re gone, leading to the spread of mold and water damage.

 

Guy & Hurricane Shutters

Guy & Hurricane Shutters

Caulk Windows and Doors

Water can seep into your home in all kinds of ways during hurricane season.

Take a few moments to caulk your windows and doors with some caulking gel. These small cracks and openings leave just enough room for water to get inside, flooding your entire home. Seal these openings around your home as much as possible to prevent even a small amount of water from slipping inside.

Trim Trees and Branches

All those large trees and branches around your property can turn into deadly weapons during hurricane season if you’re not careful.

High winds can rip the branches off a tree and send them shooting through one of your doors or windows, causing all kinds of headaches for you when you return home.

Take A Little Time Do The Extra

Tt’s a good idea to get rid of some of the potentially dangerous branches and trees before you leave town. Anything near a window should be taken down.

If you’re not sure how to get your home’s landscaping in shape for hurricane season, call a professional in your neighborhood. They’re probably used to trimming trees and branches for those worried about tropical storms.

Tree On House

Tree On House

Double Check Your Insurance Policies

It’s vital that you check your home’s insurance policies before you leave the area. You never know what kind of a mess you’ll have to deal with when you return home, so now is the time to make sure your policies are in good standing.

In addition to flood insurance, you’ll also want to check for wind insurance and other policies that might help you cover any unexpected damage to your property. Let them know that you’re leaving town and it might take you a while to submit a claim if anything goes wrong.  If damage does occur you may want to consider hiring an adjuster.

 

Every homeowner should do everything they can to protect their property before leaving town for hurricane season. If you’re not sure how to protect your home from potential water damage, contact the professionals at Total Care Restoration to learn more.

Water Damage Stains

How to Get Rid of Water Damage Stains

By | Water | No Comments
Water Damage Stain

Water Damage Stain

Even after you handle the root cause of water damage or a leak, chances are that there’s still going to be plenty of reminders out there of what happened, particularly water damage stains.

Various Areas Can Cause Water Stain Damage

While it may seem odd that something we associate with being clean can leave a stain, water damage can do just that, whether it’s from minerals in the water itself or dirt brought up in the water from a variety of different areas.

The important thing to understand about water damage stains, in Southern Florida or anywhere else, is that the approach to get rid of them varies based on the intensity of the damage and the surface stained.

Let’s take a look at some of the most common areas for water damage staining and what you can do. But what about preventing damage stains before they even happen?  If interested please click here.

Ceiling Drywall

Chances are that if you’re dealing with water damage from above, this is probably going to be the first place that you see it. The first thing you want to do in these scenarios is to check for any mold that may be left from the initial leak. If that’s clean and the leak is taken care of, you can get started. When the drywall fully dries out, it’s not that hard to get rid of the stain. Use these following steps to help:

  • Combine chlorine bleach and water together
  • Then wash the stained area thoroughly with a sponge. This may not clear the stain itself but will kill any residual mold.
  • After the drywall dries again, add some stain-blocking primer and repaint the affected area.
  • Please note if you haven’t painted the ceiling in a while, the area may look brighter than the rest of the ceiling.
Water Drops

Water Drops

Wood

Whether it’s furniture or decorative pieces, water damage on wood is extremely frustrating, from warping to stains.

The Good News? You have homemade options

There are a few things you can do. If the stain just appeared, you can take advantage of a few homemade options like using an clothes iron, emptying the water, plugging it in, then applying it briefly to a piece of fabric on the table.

A dab of toothpaste or even mayonnaise (as bizarre as it may sound) scrubbed gently on the area makes a good second option.

Upholstery

Chances are that you look at your favorite couch or piece of furniture just about every day, which makes it that much more annoying when there’s a big water damage stain sitting there.

One good homemade solution is to start with a combination of water and vinegar in a spray bottle. Be sure to test it first to see if it causes additional spotting before applying it to the area.

When you get the right balance, lightly mist around the stained area and blot as you spray with a white microfiber cloth. Speed up the drying by aiming a fan or hair dryer at the area as you do this.

The Double-dosage of Stress

Stains are small forms of water damage, but that doesn’t make them any less frustrating to deal with. On top of having to clean or even possibly replace a piece of furniture, water damage stains are often a smaller indicator of a larger issue. Thes issues can lead to a double-dose of stress.

The best thing you can do in this is case is make sure you call a water damage repair specialist. A specialist can help you deal with situations as they arise. This can apply doubly somewhere like Southern Florida, where the weather can make water damage a common concern.

IICRC-Certified!

Total Care Restoration is here to help when it comes to water damage repair. Not only do we believe in doing the most for our customers, but we’re also IICRC-certified. This means we use the best cleaning and restoration tactics to help protect your home.

 

Emergency Water Damage Repair

By | Water | 5 Comments
Help Emergency

Help Emergency

An emergency water damage repair skill set will come handy in Southern Florida’s tropical and hurricane season. You never know when your home might fill up with water due to torrential rainstorms and volatile ocean waves. If you are leaving town before a tropical storm or hurricane follow these

If this happens to your property, you’ll need to call an emergency water damage repair company to help clean up the mess.

To better prepare for this nightmare scenario, learn more about what the water damage repair process looks like and how it can affect your home.  You may be also curious about what to do first before that tropical storm or hurricane damage comes. If so, read on here.  If leaving

1.  Inspect the Damage  

The first step is to survey the extent of the damage to your property. Some mild flooding may only require some light vacuuming.

However, if a massive tropical storm has wreaked havoc on your home or office resulting in several feet of standing water, the damage can be quite extensive. 

Minimize Your Damages 

Flooded Housing

Flooded Housing

 The amount of time the water has been sitting around your property will also affect the extent of the damage. That’s why it’s best to call an emergency water damage repair team as soon as possible once you detect a leak. 

2. Removing The Water 

Once the water damage restoration team understands what they’re working with, they will need to start removing the water. This is usually done using a water pump or vacuum.

Find Mold Remediation Specialists 

 Then the team will need to remove the water as quickly as possible to prevent the spread of mold and other bacteria. This part of the process may take several hours or the better part of a day if the entire room is filled with water.

If water has been absorbed into absorbent surfaces like pieces of fabric, upholstered furniture, or porous building materials, the crew will need to vacuum these surfaces or remove the furniture altogether.

If you want to learn more about removing water stains from furniture check out this: How to Get Rid of Water Damage Stains

3.  Drying Out Water Damage 

Once the standing water has been removed, it’s time to start drying out the space and removing the rest of the moisture. This involves:

  • Opening the windows
  • Using fans
  • And dehumidifying the space

It can take several days for a space to dry once it’s been flooded with water. 

Mold Can Become A Serious Problem 

Mold tends to grow during the aftermath of a flood, so it’s best to remove the water and start the drying process as soon as possible.

The Center for Disease Control lays out some robust guidelines for how you can protect yourself from mold and bacteria after a flood. Mold can be very dangerous for the health of anyone living in the home or business that is affected.

Mold spreads very quickly and it is very difficult to get rid off.  If you find mold, call us immediately as it can spread everywhere.  In addition, you may want tips on how to prevent mold.

4.  Cleaning Affected Surfaces and Personal Items 

Once the space is dry, it’s time to start sanitizing and cleaning all affected surfaces using antimicrobial cleaning agents and products to prevent the spread of mold and mildew. You’ll also need to start going through your personal items that were affected by the flood.

The EPA has laid out a set of water damage guidelines to make this part of the process easier. They have instructions for what to do with damaged items depending on what they’re made of and how long they’ve been exposed to water.

Smaller items that are not that valuable like books and larger porous items, including some building materials like fiberglass and ceiling tiles, might need to be thrown away. You can use these guidelines to determine what stays and what needs to go in the trash. 

Damaged House

Damaged House

5.  Restoring the Space 

To fully restore the space and make it livable again, you may need to replace some items that were affected, including structural elements like tiles and flooring, support beams, fiberglass insulation, drywall, and other essentials. This process may take several days or longer if you need to extensively rebuild the space.

Dealing with water damage can be stressful. That’s why it helps to have a trusted water damage repair specialist handy in case of an emergency. If you live in Southern Florida, contact the pros at Total Care Restoration for all your water damage repair needs.  A claim might be needed for your damage repairs.  Learn more here about hiring an adjuster.

We’re IICRC-certified, which means we use the best cleaning and restoration tactics to help protect you and your loved ones from mold and the spread of disease.

Contact us today to learn more! 

Hurricane Damage To Property Thumb

Did You Have Hurricane Damage To Your Property?

By | Water | No Comments

Weather patterns have shown a dramatic uptick in the occurrence of catastrophic storms in the last few decades. For many coastal regions, a sad fact is that it is only a matter of time before disaster strikes.

If you have been in the path of a hurricane, and have sustained damage to your property it can be a shocking experience. In addition, it can be hard to think logically and swing into action when such a devastating event happens.

Here are some basic guidelines that you can use to deal with the situation effectively. 

Assess the damage

The process of assessing hurricane damage can be quite dangerous because there are many factors to be aware of on the surrounding property. Working around downed power lines and live wires can pose serious harm to you and your neighbors. When cleaning up around the property, you must also beware of damaged trees or dangling tree limbs that could be hiding these live wires from view.

If it looks like the property has sustained structural damage, do not enter the building. Sometimes it can be difficult to tell if a building has sustained that kind of damage, so it’s wise to use caution when entering any building after a storm.

Once it is safe to enter the property, work on getting an accurate assessment of the damage so that you can notify your insurance company. Be sure to consider sources of hidden damage as well, such as water damage, which could cause mold growth if not dealt with in a timely manner.

Most likely the power will be out at the very beginning, so it’s good to have a flashlight available. Use extreme caution when using an open flame in a place that has sustained hurricane damage. You never know if there is a gas leak. To be even more safe, you should have a fire extinguisher handy at all times. 

Mitigate further damage

Once the storm has passed, and it’s safe to enter the property, you can begin to do some things to help mitigate the damage. In addition, a good water damage restoration company can help you prevent more damage. We work with most insurance companies, so we can help mitigate damages and the insurance company will cover the cost.

If trees, branches or debris have fallen around the property you can begin to clear it away. If the roof of the property has been compromised, cover it with a tarp to prevent more water from getting inside.

Remove wet rugs or carpets from the property to prevent water damage to the subfloor. It’s a good idea to open windows and doors to get air flowing into the property if possible to help dry the area. Always wait until you contact the insurance company before hiring any contractors unless it’s an emergency situation that requires immediate repair. 

Consider Hiring An Adjuster

We always recommend hiring an adjuster. An adjuster will work on your behalf to make sure the claim goes smoothly. In addition, they will know how to properly do the claim so you get the most amount of coverage.

If you decide not to use an adjuster then: 

Call the insurance company

The sooner you call the insurance company, the better. If you are serious about getting reimbursed for damages, you definitely shouldn’t wait until the roof is caving in. Or even worse, if mold growth has taken over your home or business. Not to mention the fact that many insurance companies limit the time you can file a claim after a catastrophic event has occurred.

In preparation for contacting your insurance company there are a few things you need to have ready so that the process can be as efficient as possible. 

Home or Business Inventory List

Hopefully you are one of those people who is very meticulous about keeping track of your valuables. This is one instance where it will really come in handy. If you are able to present a list of your damaged home or business inventory, you will be able to file claims much more easily than if you are still scratching your head trying to figure out what to include in the insurance claim when the insurance adjuster arrives.

As we already mentioned, you could also opt to hire a public adjuster, which is a person who can come and help you accurately assess the value of your property and the repair costs. 

Questions for the Insurance Company

If you are not fully aware of what your policy allows for, then having a list of questions for the insurance company can be a great idea. Many times, insurance policies allow for things such as an additional living expense allowance while your home is being repaired.

If you don’t already know, it’s also smart to find out what the hurricane/windstorm deductible is on your policy. That way you will be prepared for the cost when the bill comes in. 

Contact Us For Water Damage Restoration

Our home is Miami, and it’s been years since we had any hurricane damage in Miami. However, we understand that every hurricane season is different, and we can get hit at any time.

Good luck, and contact us if you have had any hurricane damage to your home or business.