Dealing with the aftermath of any disaster that has affected your house is most often traumatic and stressful. Paul Davis offers the following information and tips that can help provide a smoother recovery process.
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- Of course, it is extremely important to make sure you and your family (and don’t forget your pets) are secure and that you contact your relatives and friends to let them know you are safe.
- Report the damage to your insurance company as soon as possible.
- Keep a listing of any and all household personal belongings or goods that you have discarded and receipts for any expenses you incur while protecting your home.
- Is your house safe? Depending on the extent of the damage, you may need to relocate temporarily until the repairs and cleanup are complete. (Notify your insurance company if this is the case.)
Water Damage Tips
You’ve 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 residents. The potential for slips, falls and electric shock are very real. Also, items soaked with water can be very heavy. Only handle tasks that can be done 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 your water meter.
- Electrical: Turn off all power to affected areas of the property. Do not operate your TV or other electrical appliances while you are standing on wet floors or carpets.
- Air Conditioning: Turn your air conditioner on to speed up drying during the summer or in more humid regions.
- Floors: Get rid of as much standing water as possible, using a mop or towels. (Don’t use the vacuum cleaner.)
- Carpeting: Blot soaked carpeting with clean, white towels. Remove Oriental rugs or other colored rugs from wet wall-to-wall carpet.
- Clothing/Fabrics: Transfer wet items to dry places. Don’t allow draperies to remain in contact with wet carpeting or floors.
- Furniture: Move lighter pieces off of the carpet. Place plastic bags or plastic wrap beneath the legs of bigger furniture. Wipe any residual water off of the furniture.
Fire Damage Tips
You’ve 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: You should never reenter affected areas of the home until fire officials have deemed the home safe. Even after the fire is out, there are potential safety hazards to be aware of. The potential for slips and falls from water that was used to extinguish the fire, as well as cuts and scrapes from exposed, sharp edges are very real. Only perform tasks that can be done safely.
- Going Back Inside: The aftermath of fire damage can be measured down to microscopic levels. Even for a short time, entry by a person can cause extra damage. Enter ONLY if emergency personnel have cleared the property and deemed it safe to enter and only if absolutely necessary.
- Appliances/Electronics: Never use any TV, stereo or other electrical appliances until they have been checked 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 being on carpet if at all possible. Do not use “do-it-yourself” home carpet cleaners.
- Walls/Ceilings: Do not attempt to wipe or wash ceilings and other absorbent surfaces.
- Doors: Shut doors in affected areas to contain smoke odors as much as possible.
- Food Items: Don’t consume food items exposed to smoke or any canned goods that have been subjected to excessive heat.
- Furnace: Change the air conditioner or furnace filter if the blower is operating. Tape double pieces of cheesecloth over air registers with masking tape.
- Pets: Relocate any pets to a safe environment until your property has been cleaned and restored.
- Plants: Wash plants with mild soap and water, cleaning both sides of the leaves.
- Windows: If possible, open windows to ventilate.
If your home or business has been damaged by water, storm, mold, fire or other disaster, Call Paul!