Recent Posts

Does My Rental Insurance Cover Mold Damage?

11/26/2019 (Permalink)

Drywall covered with mold Does your rental insurance cover mold damage? Give your Agent a call and ask them about mold coverage.

If you experience flooding in the home or apartment you are renting, a renter's insurance policy can be helpful in recovering costs for your damaged items. If mold removal does not lead to full repair, you should contact your insurance company to see about compensation or full replacement of your belongings.

Determining Cause

In order to receive compensation from your rental insurance company, you will need to prove how the mold damage was caused. Most commonly, rental policies cover mold caused by internal flooding. Internal flooding includes sitting water resulting from some of the following circumstances:

  • Dripping pipe
  • Leaky air conditioning unit
  • Pipe burst
  • Toilet overflow

Personal Property

As a renter, you are not likely to have a full homeowners insurance policy. Because you don't own the property, your policy doesn't need to cover structural concerns like roofing. Instead, a rental insurance policy will provide coverage only for your personal belongings within the space. Personal property can be anything from clothing to furniture. If these items become ruined in a flood beyond your control, your insurance policy may be helpful in recovering the costs associated with replacing damaged goods.

Landlord Responsibility

If mold damage is caused by circumstances of landlord neglect, your renters insurance policy may not provide coverage. Instead, your insurance company may suggest turning to the landlord for reimbursement. While you may seek compensation from your landlord, many rental contracts include written clauses to excuse the landlord from responsibility for damage of any personal property. If your rental insurance does not cover mold remediation, you may have a difficult time demanding compensation from the landlord responsible.
As you await compensation from your renters insurance policy, be sure to have any water or mold cleanup needs addressed right away. A black mold cleanup crew in Union Township, PA, can remove existing mold and prevent the spreading of further damage to the rest of your home and belongings.

5 Tips for Keeping Your Dryer Lint Free

11/21/2019 (Permalink)

Hand cleaning accumulated clothing lint from trap in clothes dryer. Remove the lint screen and clean it

You might not be too surprised to experience a small grease fire on your stovetop or other minor, manageable blaze. One of the most unfortunate and avoidable home disasters, however, is a lint fire in your clothes dryer. You can avert this fire damage at your home in Burgettstown, PA, by performing routine maintenance on your dryer.

5 Steps to a Safer Dryer

Once you realize how important it is to clean and maintain your dryer filters on a regular basis, you need to learn how to go about it. Here are the five most important steps for keeping your dryer safe from a lint fire.

Remove the lint screen. Tap the screen over a garbage bin or gently pull the lint off. If the lint sticks to the screen, rinse it with a sprayer. Dry thoroughly before reinserting it in the dryer.
Vacuum the upper vent. Use a narrow tipped nozzle to vacuum out the vent where the lint filter is inserted. Periodically remove the residual lint trapped inside this vent.
Clean the dryer exhaust. Unplug the dryer and remove the clamp that holds the expandable exhaust hose to the dryer. Use a cleaning rod to reach deep into the hose and remove lint buildup. Finish the cleanup by using the wand on your vacuum.
Check the exterior vent. Go outside and remove the cover from the exterior dryer vent. Clean off any lint buildup and replace the cover.
Tend to the back of the dryer. Make sure the dryer is unplugged and remove the panel from the back. Using a shop vacuum, clean out all of the vents and any other areas where you find lint. Replace the back panel before plugging the dryer back in.

If a blaze does break out. you may need assistance with fire damage cleanup. Call a professional fire and water damage restoration company in Burgettstown, PA, to help with fire cleanup and smoke odor removal caused by the lint fire. Better yet, keep your filters clean and reduce your risk of a dryer fire.

5 Reasons Sewage Could End Up in Your Basement

11/16/2019 (Permalink)

Completely flooded basement. It is visible line showing maximum water level higher than 7 feet. Flooded basement in Donora, PA

Common Causes Of Finding Black Water in Your Basement

People might have nightmares about intruders breaking in at night, or bears chasing them, or clowns, but for many homeowners having a flooded basement is one scary situation. This is especially true if the water is contaminated or contains sewage. The reasons for finding black water in your basement in Donora, PA, are many, but here are some of the most common causes.

A Flood. Floods are among the most common disasters that a homeowner could face. When water rushes in from the outside, there is no telling what it could contain. Chemicals, dirt, oil and sewage are often present in flood water. Because of this, a professional disaster mitigation company should be called in for safety and for cleanup.

Plumbing Problems. Everything from a bathtub backing up to a toilet overflow can bring unwelcome dirty water into the home and result in a flooded basement.

A Clogged Sewer Line. Your municipal sewer line can get clogged or damaged from tree roots, enabling an unpleasant back up of sewage into your home.

Melting Snow and Runoff. When a large amount of snow melts quickly, often accompanied by warm rains, this extra water can leak into basements. This is more likely if your home's landscaping slopes toward your basement, or if cracks in the foundation exist.

A Neglected Septic System. If your home is served by a septic system instead of a municipal wastewater system, make sure it is pumped out periodically. Otherwise, this could result in sewage backing up into your home.

The presence of contaminated water, also known as black water, should be treated with care. The water could be harmful to humans and pets and should be avoided. The best practice is to call in a company that is trained and experienced in dealing with a flooded basement. The company will safely clean up the mess and restore your home "Like it never even happened."

Can Your Office Contents Be Saved After a Flood or Storm?

10/30/2019 (Permalink)

Wet documents Wet documents damaged after storm in Strabane, PA

Can Your Office Contents Be Saved After a Flood or Storm?

Storm damage can be devastating to a Strabane, PA, business. Rain and wind can cause severe flooding that harms your office's equipment, furniture and more. Major disasters can also lead to a buildup of black water from sewers or toilets.

Some porous materials may be unsalvageable after a flood. However, content cleaning and restoration experts may be able to wash and dry non-porous materials within the building.
Several methods will be used during the flood cleanup process. They include:

  • Foam Cleaning
  • Spray and Wipe
  • Wet Cleaning
  • Dry Cleaning
  • Immersion Cleaning
  • Abrasive Cleaning

The method used depends on the types of objects being cleaned, and the amount of damage. Foam Cleaning is bests for fabrics that might bleed or shrink when wet. Spray and Wipe, meanwhile, is designed for objects that can't handle a more thorough cleaning.
Items with minor residue will likely just be dry-cleaned. Wet Cleaning is preserved for moderate or heavy damage.
Immersion Cleaning involves dipping the item into bathwater. Finally, Abrasive Cleaning agitates the surface of the damaged item.

Document Cleaning

Your office probably has plenty of contracts and documents that are essential to your business. Content cleaning professionals can use freeze-drying or thermal drying techniques to minimize any water damage to these items after a storm. This technology works on a variety of items, including photographs, manuscripts, blueprints and X-rays.

Electronics

Of course, many of your most important records are probably digitized on computers and tablets. Even these can be saved following a disaster. DVD players and television can be restored, as well.
During the storm cleanup process, the professionals will take steps to prevent additional corrosion to the electronics. They will then give the items to a technician for specialized repair.
Flood damage to your commercial building does not have to destroy your business. With the help of content cleaning experts, many items in your office can be saved.

3 Tips To Keep Frozen Pipes From Ruining Your Home

10/17/2019 (Permalink)

Faucet with water drop close up Let the faucet drip

Winter often brings cold weather to Cross Creek, PA. While snow, sleet and ice require you to throw on some extra layers before leaving the house, they can also spell disaster for your home’s plumbing system. As you probably know, water expands when it freezes. This expansion can put tremendous pressure on pipes, leading to a potential pipe burst. Here are three effective ways to keep your water line from freezing during cold winter months.

1. Find Exposed Pipes

Not all the pipes in your home are at equal risk for freezing. Generally, pipes in exposed areas and outer walls have a greater chance of sustaining damage during a cold spell. If you aren’t sure which pipes in your home are vulnerable, ask a plumber to explain your plumbing system to you.

2. Disconnect Outside Hoses

Leaving your hoses connected to exterior spickets during the winter can encourage a pipe burst. At the end of the watering season, disconnect and drain your houses. Also, consider placing insulation around exterior faucets to keep them from freezing when temperatures drop.

3. Let the Faucet Drip contracting with a reputable mold mitigation service, you have the equipment, skill and expertise to ensure your home returns to its pre-flood condition.

Getting to the Source of a Shower Leak

10/14/2019 (Permalink)

Leakage of water from a shower cabin with glass wall that is damaged Shower leaking in a Donora, PA bathroom

Getting to the Source of a Shower Leak

Water leaks can occur in your home for a variety of reasons and from several sources. The bathroom is one of the most likely places where unwanted water can seep into the living space of a home. A bathtub leak is not uncommon, nor is water leaking from the shower area. Quick action is crucial when dealing with a leak, for several reasons. A long-term leak can cause structural damage to the home and allow for mold growth. Also, water damage from a neglected leak may not be covered by a home insurance policy. If you can find the source of the leak, you might be able to prevent the water from staining or weakening the floor. If you cannot find the source, call in a water remediation team right away.

Finding Leaks

A shower pan leak in Donora, PA, should be addressed quickly. To find the source of the leak pay special attention to these areas and situations:

  • Look for areas of peeling or flaking grout
  • Look for broken tiles
  • Follow the water trail
  • Look for cracks or openings in the shower pan
  • Investigate water stains or darkening on the ceiling beneath a shower

It's not a bad idea to run the shower and try to see if water is leaking. Make sure the test is conducted in a good light, as finding the source of the leak is often challenging. Once the source of a bathtub leak or shower leak is established, you can move on to the next step.

Fixing Leaks

If you're handy, and the leak is minor, you may be able to fix it yourself. If the leak has gone on for some time, there may be water damage to the floor, ceiling or walls. The wet area should be completely dried out, cleaned and sanitized. To erase all of the damage of a bathtub leak it is crucial to remove all of the moisture.

Your First 3 Steps After a Home Fire

10/7/2019 (Permalink)

Picture of a fan and ceiling with soot damage after a fire Fire damage in Strabane, PA

A home fire can be an unsettling experience for you and your family. Once the fire has been extinguished, the inspection and fire restoration processes begin. It’s important to stay focused on getting the help you need and moving forward. Before you can survey your damage, an official will want to clear your home for safe entry.

Initial Safety Assessment

After the fire is extinguished, crews will assess the dwelling for safety. They will carefully inspect three aspects of the damage to determine whether you and cleanup teams can enter.

  • Structural Integrity – The walls, stairwells, floors and ceilings will be inspected for stability, and dangerous areas will likely be cordoned off.
  • Electrical System – If the electrical is still live, it will likely be disconnected from power until water is removed from the building.
  • Unstable Hazards – It may take a day or two for fire teams to identify hazards and remove them from the structure.


This phase of the process confirms your home is stable enough for you and cleanup crews to enter.

Damage Survey

With your home cleared for entry, you will likely go in for the first time with a crew chief or fire supervisor. The official will help you understand the extent of the fire and smoke damage and give you an overview of the fire restoration process. This important step can prepare you for initial conversations with your insurance agent and remediation professionals.

Professional Assistance

As soon as you have an overview of the damage, you can notify your insurance company and find out about your coverage. The fire specialist who toured the damage with you can recommend a damage cleaning service for your situation. Professionals will work quickly and safely to clean, dry and restore your belongings and structure.

A fire in your Strabane, PA, home can cause you and your family significant stress. The emergency responders, your insurance agent and your fire restoration crews are all trained to help guide you through the process. Step by step, they will work to restore your home and your belongings—and ultimately, your peace of mind.

Debunk These 3 Myths About Mold

9/25/2019 (Permalink)

Water entering between the slits of a window Regularly wipe away moisture to keep mold from growing

3 Misconceptions and Myths That Can Cause Property Damage

Mold can be everywhere and takes various forms and shapes, from green to black mold. It may have a destructive impact on the soundness of your home in Cross Creek, PA, and it can look and smell unpleasant. It is natural to learn about mold and its elimination, but you should also be careful when researching information about mold and mold cleanup. Here are three misconceptions and myths that can cause property damage and expenses:

1. Mold Disappears Once the Area Is Dry

Mold is an organism that thrives in water and moist environments. Several water sources can cause and accelerate its growth:

  • Leaking or burst pipes
  • Condensation
  • Plumbing backups
  • Flooding
  • Excessive water flow

Still, even after the moisture problem is resolved, mold can remain in the home and compromise its integrity. Complete mold remediation is necessary to effectively eliminate the problem.

2. Black Mold Is Different

Also known as Stachybotrys Chartarum, this mold tends to have a darker color than its green or brown counterparts. However, people may assume it is different from other types of mold. There are numerous assumptions made about this mold, from the creation of mycotoxins to the difficulty of removal. These statements are misinformed since Stachybotrys can be numerous colors, and other types of mold can be black. In addition, mycotoxin production can occur in multiple kinds of molds, not just this specific one. The cleanup process is the same as for any other mold.

3. Mold Is Easy To Clean

Most people assume that mold is easy to remove by using a cleaning product and wiping it with a towel or rag. The problem is that you may use a product that is either ineffective or counterintuitive. For instance, chlorine bleach can damage certain surfaces and furniture. Mold remediation specialists can use professional equipment and products to effectively eliminate it without creating additional problems.
From black mold to the presence of moisture, there are multiple mold myths that can interfere with the cleanup process. Educate yourself and consult professional resources to take the correct approach to mold.

What To Do With Water Damaged Contents

9/25/2019 (Permalink)

Flooded office Flooded company in Strabane, PA

What To Do With Water Damaged Contents

If your Strabane, PA, business has experienced a broken pipe, you may be wondering how to restore any items affected by the water damage. Cleaning up a flooded company can include the restoration of office electronics, furniture, upholstery, documentation, and various other items important to day-to-day business. Here are three steps for getting everything back in working order.

1. Contact a Restoration Service

If your office contents have been damaged it's important to contact a water damage restoration service to help with any cleanup and repairs. These professionals also have the tools necessary to help restore a variety of types of items, including office equipment, electronics, and even documentation. The exact nature of the method used depends on the damage type and amount each item has accrued.

2. Sort the Items By Type

When removing damaged items from your flooded company it's important to sort each item by type so that the proper cleaning method can be used. Upholstery items will require a different cleaning methods than those of a hard surface such as a desk or filing cabinet. Damage electronics and documentation will need to be cleaned by a professional.

3. Clean Items According To Each Type

Each item should be cleaned with the appropriate method. Solid surface items may be cleaned with a wipe on solution, while smaller non-mechanical items may be dipped. Fabric items may need to go through a dry cleaning process. Electronics and documentation can be saved as well, but these processes should be performed by a professional.
Cleaning up your flooded company can involve the restoration of a number of office items. It's important to remember to sort each item by type so that the appropriate cleaning method can be used. Electronics and documentation can be salvaged as well. For more complex items you may consider it best to contact a professional restoration service.

Will Insurance Cover My Sewage Backup?

9/9/2019 (Permalink)

Someone's hand holding a shovel and with the other hand holding roots coming out a sewer line Tree roots growing in the sewer line is a common reason for sewer backup problems

Different Causes of Sewage Backup In A Home

A sewer backup in Hanover Township, PA, is more than just a smelly inconvenience. It can also be quite dangerous. That’s because sewage can contain disease-causing bacteria or viruses.
There are several different causes of sewage backup in the home. They include:

  1. A blockage in the city sanitary main
  2. A water leak in the basement
  3. Tree roots blocking the sewer line

Sewage Backups and Insurance

Whatever the cause of the sewage backup, the damage can be expensive to fix. However, your home insurance policy should pay for most of the repairs. While a basic insurance policy does not typically cover sewage backup, you can usually add it to your policy for an additional $40 to $160 a year.
Neither regular homeowners’ insurance nor sewage backup policies usually include general flood coverage. However, you can purchase flood insurance from a private insurer or the National Flood Insurance Program. Otherwise, your insurance may only cover some of the damage from a flood-related sewer backup.
If you need to file an insurance claim, make sure to take photos of the affected area. Attach some “before” pictures as well so the insurer can see the extent of the damage. You should also make a list of any items that were destroyed.

How To Clean Sewage Backup

If you experience a sewage backup or similar disaster such as a toilet overflow, you should hire an emergency restoration services company to clean up your home. Restoration experts will disinfect the walls and plumbing fixtures. They will also mop up the floors and dry off wet drapes or carpets. They may even be able to eliminate that nasty odor. Once you pay these professional cleaners, make sure to save your receipt so you can show it to your insurance company.
No one wants a sewer backup to occur in their home. If you do experience this disaster, however, proper home insurance and cleaning professionals can make the ordeal less painful.