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IICRC Certification: What It Means to You

3/31/2020 (Permalink)

IICRC logo IICRC certified cleanup and restoration companies will the best option when suffering property damages in Ogden, UT.

Property damages are nearly always frustrating to Ogden, UT, homeowners because the damages affect both home and work life. In a rush to get things corrected, sometimes homeowners rush into contracts with unreputable cleanup and repair businesses. Fortunately, the Institute of Inspection, Cleaning, and Restoration Certification (generally referred to as the IICRC,) provides training and certification to professionals, so homeowners can recognize trustworthy restoration companies.

What Does the Institute Offer?

When you find a cleanup and mitigation company with IICRC certification, you can be sure of a few important facts:

  • The restoration company and its individual employees have completed classes, trainings, and standardized exams.
  • Technicians and related professionals continue to complete coursework to maintain certificates.
  • Companies abide by standards established by the Institute.

The contractor trainings and exams are offered consistently throughout the year, so professionals can update their credentials. Continuing education opportunities are an important aspect of providing modern services to keep homeowners, their families, and their property in safe conditions.

What Types of Classes Are Available?


Some of the classes offered by the certification institute include a mitigation certificate and water damage restoration training that includes education concerning basic containment, mold mitigation procedures, and techniques for drying a variety of structures. A mold certification course may cover the basics of identification or how to test for and abate mold growth.

Why Hire Institute Certified Professionals?

You may have a Ogden, UT, neighbor or two who are pretty familiar with construction techniques and general home upkeep. When you really need to know that the work to your home is done correctly, however, it's best to find a cleanup and reconstruction company that is IICRC certified. You'll experience a lot of peace of mind knowing that there aren't hidden pockets of mold growth or structural elements of your home that have been compromised. Working with trained professionals who hold a mitigation certificate gives you confidence that you've done everything you can to keep your family safe and healthy.

Fire Safety Tips

3/30/2020 (Permalink)

Smoke alarm Smoke detectors are important to keep your family safe.

When you own a home in Ogden, UT, you hope that a house fire is something you never have to deal with. If a fire does break out, however, you want to be properly prepared so that your family can get out in time.

Three fire safety tips for ensuring that your fire alarm system is the best it can be.

1. Install Smoke Detectors

Your best chance of getting out of your home quickly in the event of a fire is being alerted to its presence. One detector won't cut it. You need at least one detector on every level of your home, one inside each bedroom and one outside every sleeping area. It is advisable to purchase a combination of ionization and photoelectric alarms, because they detect different types of smoke. You may even be able to find alarms that detect both types of fires.

2. Maintain System

Your fire alarm system needs proper maintenance to ensure that it continues to keep you and your family safe. You should test the batteries in each detector every month and replace them once a year. The smoke detectors themselves need to be replaced every 8-10 years. You may not be able to prevent smoke damage to your home, but with a properly maintained system, you can be alerted in time to avoid personal injury.

3. Practice Escape Plan


Newer building materials burn much faster and hotter than older homes, causing both greater fire damage and heightened danger for those inside. If you live in a newer home, you need to be able to get out quickly. Talk to your family about your emergency escape plan, but don't stop at having the conversation. Practice exactly what you need to do when you hear the smoke alarm go off. Knowing what to do in a fire can save lives.

Your fire alarm system is essential to keeping you safe during a fire. Make sure it is adequate and in good working order so that it can alert your family at the first sign of a fire.

How Long Does a Commercial Generator Last?

3/30/2020 (Permalink)

Street sign with letters saying "Are you ready?" Is your business ready for when disaster strikes.

Unless you're the owner of an old-fashioned candle-making company, electricity is probably central to your business operations. When disaster strikes Salt Lake City, UT, you can rely on your commercial generator to kick in and keep your business thriving. It'll be there to light the way for the commercial property restoration company that's working to get your company back on its feet, too. It's the workhorse of your company's emergency preparedness plan, and when it's working properly, you may not even know that it's there.

What Commercial Generators Do

Commercial generators provide power when your regular service is interrupted. Hiccups in your electricity can be caused by an assortment of causes:

  • Floods
  • Earthquakes
  • Lightning
  • Snowstorms
  • Trees and other impacts on power lines
  • Auto accidents involving utility poles
  • Animals
  • A citywide overload of the power grid


Generators themselves can be operated by a variety of sources, including natural gas, diesel, liquid propane and solar power. Each type of fuel carries its own pros and cons. Natural gas, for example, is provided by your utility company, which means you'll have a limitless supply during a lengthy outage. Diesel-powered generators, meanwhile, are commonly viewed as the most reliable.

How Long Commercial Generators Last

Generally speaking, a commercial generator should last for an average of 3,000 hours. More sophisticated models may stretch that out to 5,000 hours. In a lifetime of average use — running it during the day during power outages and shutting it off at night — most generators can last for between 20 to 30 years.

How You Can Make It Last Longer


Like most commercial equipment, machinery and appliances, the keys to longevity are regular maintenance and prompt service. Addressing generator problems as soon as they arise, or better still, preventing all together them via regular inspections, can maximize your generator's lifespan and help you get the most out of your investment.

A commercial generator is a crucial component of many businesses' disaster contingency plans. Take care of yours and it can provide safe, reliable back-up for decades.

What To Know About an Emergency Board Up

3/4/2020 (Permalink)

Window in residential home with board ups. Boarding up after a fire in a West Haven, UT home.

If your West Haven, UT, home has suffered fire damage then you may be looking at the option of doing a board up over the damaged area. There are several reasons you may want to consider this process. Here’s what you may want to know.

How Boarding Up Can Protect Your Home

Having an emergency board up done to protect damaged areas of your home can help protect it from a number of things. Boarding over can

  • Prevent inclement weather such as rain or snow from getting inside
  • Reduce the possibility of wind damage
  • Discourage animals from exploring the damaged area
  • Reduce the risk of human trespassers
  • Prevent a liability claim from someone who got into the damaged area
  • Help maintain insurance eligibility

Insurance Benefits of Boarding Over Damaged Areas

In many cases, your insurance company may require you to board up the damaged area before they will accept your claim. Most policies cover only the initial damages and consider a failure to protect the area before repairs can be made an act of neglect. Boarding over the damage can help show them that you take your responsibilities as a homeowner seriously.

Proper Boarding Up Procedures

Boarding over the damage involves using ply-board or tarps in most cases. It’s important to cover all the damage and secure the edges to prevent weather or animals from getting in. A professional restoration service may be able to do the job for you if you have concerns.

Boarding over the damaged area can not only help protect your home from weather and animals, but it may be required by your insurance company when filing a claim. Fortunately, many restoration services offer the option to have their team do the board up for you. When it comes to protecting your home from fire damage, boarding over the area can help save both time and further costly repairs down the road.

Feel Confident About Your Cleanup and Mitigation Company

2/28/2020 (Permalink)

Stains of water on floor after removing damaged materials due to sink leaking. This kitchen suffered water damage in Ogden, UT.

After your home has been damaged by water, fire, mold, or another disaster, some of the most important people you'll work with are those from a cleanup and mitigation company. Unfortunately, there are a lot of restoration professionals who claim to do great work but don't really have the equipment, expertise, or IICRC training to provide satisfactory results.

How can you recognize reputable technicians from less-than-savory companies?


Ask the Right Questions


One of the first steps you should take is to ask questions about each company and its technicians. The right questions can lead to informative answers:

  • Does the restoration company have licensing, certifications, and insurance?
  • Will the company give you a copy of their licenses, insurance, and bond paperwork
  • How are estimates made? (Avoid any company providing estimates over the phone?)
  • How long has the company been in your area?
  • Are they local or nationwide?
  • Will the restoration company work with your insurance provider?

It may be tempting to choose the first technician to offer you a fast, low estimate, but you'll find that this often leads to sloppy work and extra costs down the road.


Talk to Your Insurance Provider

Following any disaster, you should call your insurance provider as soon as possible. When you make this phone call, ask for recommendations regarding disaster cleanup and restoration companies. This insurance company is also interested in getting good results while keeping costs low. You're almost sure to get a recommendation for a restoration provider with the proper mitigation certificate and licensing.


Learn About Licensing and Credentials


Another vital step is understanding industry standards and credentials. The Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification, or IICRC, is a non-profit organization that sets the standards for inspection, cleaning, and restoration companies. The organization also provides certifications, so individual professionals and entire companies can become certified to show they are compliant with those standards.

The best results for your home restoration come from working with a Ogden, UT, company that has proper IICRC compliance, trained professionals, and the tools to do the job. Take time to research the company, get answers to vital questions, talk to your insurance provider, and understand credentials and compliance.

4 Ways to Remove and Prevent Shower Mold

2/21/2020 (Permalink)

Water leaking on floor tiles from shower Shower leak can lead to mold damage in Ogden, UT.

Shower mold is a common issue in most households. Although, the problem typically manifests as mildew rather than mold. If you have to deal with mold, then you definitely want to address the issue quickly, but you will also want to find ways to prevent the further development of the mold. Try the following four methods for removing and preventing mold.

  • Commercial cleaners
  • DIY cleaner
  • Professional removal
  • Preventatives

4 Methods For Removing and Preventing Shower Mold 


Commercial Cleaners


The first method that people tend to use without much consideration when they have a moldy bathroom is a commercial cleaner. While these cleaners can be useful, they can also be harsher than necessary and should be used with caution. If you choose to use a commercial product, be sure to use protective gear, such as gloves and eyewear, and open a window.

DIY Cleaner


When it comes to DIY shower mold removers, there are a few options. First, you can use undiluted vinegar for a non-toxic alternative. Second, you can mix one cup of Borax with a gallon of water for an effective fungicide solution. Last, you can use a bleach solution, but because of the fumes, it is not advisable.

Professional Removal


Next, if you are concerned about the type of mold your dealing with, or are curious if the substance is black mold, then consider hiring a professional mold remediation company in Ogden, UT. These professionals will inspect and test your home, making sure they take any necessary safety precautions.


Preventatives


Once the mold is cleaned and removed, it is necessary to ensure that you are taking all precautions to prevent future mold development. For example, always use the bathroom fan when taking a shower. Also, when you are done bathing, open a window and let the space dry. Last, consider using a squeegee to get excess moisture off of tiles and hard surfaces.
Shower mold or mildew is a common household occurrence, but it is necessary to take action to ensure the problem doesn't become unmanageable. Follow the steps above to clean and reduce the risk of reoccurrence.

3 Reasons To Board Up Your Building After a Fire

2/13/2020 (Permalink)

Picture of building with boarded up windows after suffering fire damage and with letters saying Fire Damage. Fire damage in a commercial building in Ogden, UT can leave 3 potential problems.

A fire in your commercial building in Ogden, UT.  leaves the structure vulnerable in several ways. Not only does the fire damage itself make the building unstable, but the gaps left leave it open to outside elements and invaders. Using a board-up service after a fire protects your building from three potential problems.

3 Potential Problems After A Fire In Commercial Building

1. Deter Vandals and Looters


It's not unusual for looting and vandalism to occur after a fire. First, the fire itself usually renders your usual security measures, such as your alarm system, useless. There are also typically large, gaping holes in the building that make getting in easier for would-be thieves. Placing boards over the holes left by broken windows and roof damage acts as a deterrent. In order to get past them, trespassers would need special tools and would probably draw a lot of unwanted attention. A protected building is less likely to seem like it's worth the effort necessary to invade it.


2. Discourage Animals and Vermin


Humans aren't the only ones who try to get into a building with fire damage. Stray dogs, feral cats, rodents, birds and snakes may also take the opportunity to seek shelter there. They may create nests that fire restoration experts have to remove before they start mitigation. They may also leave urine or droppings in the building, which just adds to the damage. Blocking the vulnerable areas keeps them from gaining entry.


3. Shield From Rain and Debris


The fire cleanup process also involves water damage repair due to the huge amount of water needed to put out the fire. A hole in your roof leaves your building susceptible to more even more water damage if it rains. Even if every day is sunny, wind can blow debris through open holes in the building. Board-up services keep outside elements where they belong.

Cleaning up after fire damage can be a lengthy process during which you need to protect your building. Boarding up your building after a fire safeguards it against further problems.

Easy Steps to Using a Fire Extinguisher

2/11/2020 (Permalink)

Top of fire extinguisher Having a fire extinguisher in your Ogden ,UT business can help in a small fire.

You’ve heard throughout your life that in case of a fire, you should call 911 and get away from danger. While this is sound advice, there are things you can do at the outset of the fire to keep it from spreading and threatening your Ogden ,UT, office. In small fires, a fire extinguisher can be your most important tool to keep the incident from getting out of hand.

Why Use a Fire Extinguisher

You see extinguishers in buildings everywhere you go, but what makes them such effective tools to help prevent major fire damage?

  • They can act quickly and effectively against a wide range of fires in many places.
  • Anyone can learn how to use them properly.
  • If you use them properly, they can keep a small fire from getting out of control and causing extensive damage or even bodily harm or death.

The Correct Method

If you spot a kitchen fire in your office break room, or if there is a fire in any other part of your building, you need to act without hesitation. When you use the fire extinguisher appropriately, you can have confidence that you can put out the fire without much difficulty. Experts teach that you should use the PASS method: Pull, Aim, Squeeze, Sweep

Pull

Your first job is to take the extinguisher and pull the pin out of the handle at the top of the device. This will break the seal and allow you to spray the chemical.

Aim

Take the hose in one hand while holding the extinguisher by the handle in the other. Next, aim the hose low at the base of the fire.

Squeeze

Squeeze the handle firmly. This will release the extinguishing chemical.

Sweep

In a fluid motion, sweep the hose from side to side at the bottom of the fire. Do this until the fire is completely out.

If you follow these steps, you can put out small fires with a fire extinguisher. Study and practice this method in your workplace.

What Should You Do if You Smell Mold but Can’t See Mold in Your Business?

2/11/2020 (Permalink)

Patches of black mold growing in wall. Mold and moisture damage in Ogden, UT.

How to Locate Mold

Mold growth can quickly disrupt your business in Ogden ,UT, but sometimes finding the exact location of the growth can be difficult. If you notice a mold smell in your building but don’t see any visible indicators of the growth, there are several things you can do to locate the mold.

  1. Follow the Smell

In some instances, you might be able to smell mold before you can see it growing. The musty odor is often strongest close to where the mold is growing. If you’re unsure where the mold is growing, check the areas where the scent smells the strongest. It can also be helpful to be aware that mold can grow inside walls or other areas that aren’t visible, so it’s wise not to ignore the fungus smell.

  1. Check Common Areas Where Mold Grows

Understanding where mold commonly grows can help lead you to the source of the mold smell in your building. Mold most often grows in damp areas, though it is possible for mold to grow in dryer areas as well. If the smell of the mold alone doesn’t help you locate the growth, then it can be useful to check in areas such as bathrooms, near water heaters or by pipes.

  1. Use a Thermal Camera

If you have followed the smell of mold and have also searched in areas where mold commonly grows but still don’t see mold, you can consider using a thermal camera. A thermal camera will show you where water is located in spots that you can’t see. Since mold tends to grow near water and in moist areas, this tool might be able to help you locate the mold and could save you the time of searching yourself.

A mold smell in your building can often be an indicator of mold growth. If you notice a musty, mildew smell in your business or if you see signs of mold growth, it’s sometimes useful to contact mold removal and remediation professionals.

4 Steps to Take Before a Storm

1/29/2020 (Permalink)

Flood damage in green letters with flooded street Storms can be a leading cause for flood damage in Ogden, UT.

If you are expecting a storm in Ogden, UT, and want to protect your home and family, there are several steps that you should follow. Flood water can cause quite a bit of damage and can compromise your safety, so keep these tips in mind during bad weather.

4 Tips to Follow Before a Storm 



1. Have a Safety Plan

One of the most important things to do before a storm is to create a plan. You should know what you will do if the power goes out or, if the storm is severe, what you will do in the case of a flooded building. Consider all possibilities and be prepared.

2. Check Doors and Windows

To protect your home from water damage, you should make sure all of your doors and windows are properly sealed. A loose or broken seal can allow water to get inside, and even a small amount can cause problems. It is a good idea to perform regular maintenance on your home to prevent this.

3. Inspect the Outside of the House

If you have cracks in the exterior of your house, moisture can build up inside of the walls and damage the structure of the building. It can also contribute to the growth of mold. This fungus spreads quickly in dark, moist environments and can cause both discoloration and a musty odor.

4. Create an Emergency Kit

Depending on the type and severity of the storm, the contents of your emergency kit may vary. Some useful items to include are flashlights, radios, batteries, canned foods, and bottled water. Flood water can cause contamination, so you shouldn’t consume anything it touches.

Being prepared can help keep both your family and your home safe. However, if you do experience damage from a storm or flood water, a water damage remediation specialist can help get your home back to its previous condition. They can perform remediation, make repairs and restore damaged belongings.