Having to deal with the aftermath of a disaster that has directly affected your property can be stressful and often, traumatic. Paul Davis shares the following tips and information that can help the recovery process go smoother.
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- Obviously, it is always important to be sure you and your family (and don’t forget pets) are safe and that you contact your friends and relatives to let them know you are all safe.
- Report the damage to your insurance company as soon as you possibly can.
- Keep a listing of all household goods or personal belongings you have discarded and receipts for any expenses you incur in protecting your property.
- Is your house safe? Depending on the amount of damage, you may need to relocate temporarily until the repairs and cleanup are done. (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, below are helpful tips to help deal with the damage:
- Be Safe: A water event can present a lot of possible safety hazards to residents. The potential for electric shock and slips and falls 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 the water meter.
- Electrical: Turn off the power to affected areas of the home. Don’t operate the television or other electrical appliances while standing on wet flooring.
- Air Conditioning: Turn on your air conditioner to aid in drying during the summer or in more humid regions.
- Floors: Remove as much standing water as possible, using a mop or towels. (Don’t use a 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: Transport wet items to dry areas. Do not let draperies to stay 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 a member of the Paul Davis team to arrive, below are some tips to help handle with the situation:
- Be Safe: Never reenter affected areas of the house until fire officials have deemed the scene completely 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 used to diffuse the fire, and scrapes and cuts 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 more 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 stereo, TV or other electrical appliances until they have been inspected by a professional. 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 ”DIY” home carpet cleaners.
- Ceilings/Walls: Do not attempt to wash or wipe ceilings and other absorbent surfaces.
- Doors: Close all doors in affected areas to focus smoke odors as much as possible.
- Food Items: Don’t consume food exposed to smoke or any canned items that have been exposed to excessive heat.
- Furnace: Change the furnace or air conditioner filter if the blower is operating. Tape double pieces of cheesecloth over air registers with masking tape.
- Pets: Transport any and all pets to a clean environment until your home has been cleaned and restored.
- Plants: Clean 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 storm, fire, mold, water or other disaster, Call Paul!