Having to deal with the aftermath of a disaster that has affected your home can be stressful and often, traumatic. Paul Davis shares the following tips and information that can help provide a smoother recovery process.
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- Obviously, it’s always important to be sure you and your family (and don’t forget pets) are secure 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 possible.
- Keep a listing of all household personal belongings or goods you have discarded and receipts for any expenses you incur in protecting your home.
- Are you sure your house is safe? Depending on the amount of damage, you may need to relocate temporarily until the cleanup and repairs are done. (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 some tips to help deal with the damage:
- Be Safe: Water events can present a lot of possible safety hazards to residents. The potential for slips, falls and electric shock are very real. Keep in mind, items soaked with water can be very heavy. Only complete tasks that can be done so safely.
- Water Source: It is 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 all power to affected areas of the house. Don’t operate the television or other electrical appliances while standing on wet carpets or floors.
- Air Conditioning: Turn on your air conditioner to aid in drying during the summer or in humid areas of the country.
- Floors: Remove as much standing water as possible, using a mop or towels. (Do not 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 a dry place. Do not allow draperies to stay in contact with wet floors or carpeting.
- Furniture: Move lighter pieces away from the carpeting. Place plastic wrap or plastic bags beneath the legs of large furniture. Wipe any extra 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 suggestions to help handle with the situation:
- Be Safe: You should never reenter affected areas of the home until fire officials have deemed the scene safe. Even after 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, as well as scrapes and cuts from exposed, sharp edges are very real. Only perform tasks that can be done completely safely.
- Going Back Inside: The effects of fire damage are measured down to microscopic levels. Even for a short period of 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: Don’t any stereo, TV or other electrical appliances until they have been inspected by a technician. If the electricity is turned off, empty your refrigerator/freezer completely and prop the doors open using a rolled towel.
- Carpets: Avoid walking or tracking on carpet if possible. Do not use “do-it-yourself” home carpet cleaners.
- Ceilings/Walls: Do not wipe or attempt to wash ceilings or other absorbent surfaces.
- Doors: Close doors in affected areas to confine smoke odors as much as possible.
- Food Items: Do not eat food items exposed to smoke or canned products that have been exposed to excessive heat.
- Furnace: Change the air conditioner or furnace filter if the blower is operating. Tape two pieces of cheesecloth over air registers with masking tape.
- Pets: Transport any pets to a safe environment until your house has been cleaned and restored.
- Plants: Wash plants with water and mild soap, cleaning both sides of the leaves.
- Windows: Open windows to ventilate the area when possible.
If your home or business is damaged by fire, storm, water, mold or other disaster, Call Paul!