Dealing with the aftermath of a disaster that has directly affected your property can be a traumatic situation filled with uncertainty and stress. Paul Davis shares the following information and tips that should help provide a smoother recovery process.
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- Obviously, it’s always important to make sure you and your family (and don’t forget your pets) are unharmed and that you contact your relatives and friends to assure them that you are safe.
- Report the damage to your insurance company as soon as you can.
- Keep a listing of all household personal belongings or goods you have thrown out 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 have suffered a water loss. While you are waiting for help to arrive, listed below are helpful tips to help deal with the damage:
- Be Safe: A water event can present a lot of potential safety hazards to occupants. The potential for slips, falls and electric shock are real. Also, items soaked with water can be very heavy. Only handle tasks that can be done so safely.
- Water Source: It is very 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 the water meter.
- Electrical: Be sure to turn off the power to affected areas of the property. Don’t operate the TV or other electrical appliances while standing on wet carpets or floors.
- Air Conditioning: Turn the air conditioner on to assist with drying during the summer or in regions with more humidity.
- Floors: Remove as much standing water as possible, using a mop or towels. (Don’t use a 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. Do not let draperies to remain in contact with wet carpeting or floors.
- Furniture: Move lighter pieces off of the carpeting. Place plastic wrap or plastic bags beneath the legs of larger furniture. Wipe any excess water off of the furniture.
Fire Damage Tips
You have suffered a fire loss. While you are waiting for a member of the Paul Davis team to arrive, below are some helpful tips to help handle with the situation:
- Be Safe: Never reenter affected areas of the house until fire officials have deemed the property safe. Even when the fire is out, there are potential safety hazards to be aware of. The potential for slips and falls from the water that was used to put out the fire, and scrapes and cuts from exposed, sharp edges are real. Only perform tasks that can be done completely safely.
- Going Back Inside: The effects of fire damage can be measured down to microscopic levels. Even for a short time, entry by a person can create more damage. Enter ONLY if emergency personnel have cleared the property and deemed it safe to enter and only if absolutely necessary.
- Electronics/Appliances: Never use any stereo, TV or other electrical appliances until they have been inspected by a professional. If the electricity is turned off, empty the contents of your refrigerator/freezer completely and prop the doors open with a rolled towel.
- Carpets: Avoid walking or tracking on carpet if possible. Do not use ”DIY” home carpet cleaners.
- Ceilings/Walls: Don’t attempt to wipe or wash ceilings or other absorbent surfaces.
- Doors: Shut all doors in affected areas to focus smoke odors as much as possible.
- Food Items: Don’t consume any food exposed to smoke or any 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 clean environment until your property has been fully cleaned and restored.
- Plants: Rinse plants with mild soap and water, cleaning both sides of the leaves.
- Windows: If possible, open windows to ventilate.
If your home or business is damaged by fire, water, mold, storm or other disaster, Call Paul!