Recent Posts

3 Things To Consider When Buying an Extinguisher

11/10/2021 (Permalink)

Six types of fire extinguisher on a white background Having at least one fire extinguisher in your home is a great safety practice.

How To Choose the Right Extinguisher

Having a fire extinguisher in your Dahlonega, GA, home can help you stop a house fire from becoming a disaster. To best protect your home, you need to buy the right extinguisher for the space. You can turn to a residential fire damage professional and this guide to help you choose the best product for your needs.

1. Where Will It Be Used?

Are you going to put the extinguisher in your garage, kitchen or laundry room? Believe it or not, the location of your extinguisher should actually dictate what product you buy. In the garage, for example, you may want a larger model because the home fire may grow before you notice it in this space. On the other hand, you may be able to use a smaller model in the kitchen where you'll typically spot fires before they grow out of hand.

2. What Kind of Flames Will It Fight?

Did you know that a fire extinguisher may be designed to fight a certain kind of flame? This safety equipment often comes labeled as A, B, or C. The A category works well against common combustibles, including cloth, wood, and paper. B extinguishers are often designed to tackle fires caused by cooking oils, gasoline, or other liquids. The C products may help with electric fires. As you purchase your tool, you need to think about the kind of fires that may take place in the room you want to keep it in.

3. How Easy Is It To Use?

Will anyone be able to use the extinguisher? A big part of fire preparedness is making sure everyone in your home can tackle an emergency situation. Purchasing an extinguisher that has an easy-to-use hose may make it easier for anyone in your family to dampen flames. It may be a good idea for you to include a how-to demonstration during your next family fire drill.

Having at least one fire extinguisher in your home is a great safety practice. Getting the best product for your space can increase the safety tool's usefulness.

What Causes Sewers To Back Up After a Storm?

11/10/2021 (Permalink)

A storm water drain overflow Heavy rain can cause municipal sewer systems to become back up.

Why Rain Water Can Lead To a Sewer Backup

Municipal sewer systems can become overwhelmed and back up due to heavy rain. There are three common reasons why excessive rain water can lead to a sewer backup.

1. Increased Development

A storm sewer system that serves a municipality that has experienced a lot of rapid development may not be able to keep up with increased runoff levels. This can cause storm water to back up into the drains of commercial properties and homes in the region. Commercial property owners may want to consider an insurance endorsement or preventative plumbing solutions for frequent backups.

2. Poor Sewer Maintenance

The city also may not be doing a sufficient amount of sewer maintenance. Unfortunately, even if the municipality is to blame for a sewer backup, it is probably not liable for the cost of removing black water and restoring commercial property damage. Sewer backups are also commonly excluded from commercial property insurance policies. You may want to add a sewage damage endorsement to a policy to cover mitigation and restoration costs.

3. Lack of Dedicated Storm Sewers

If a municipality does not have enough storm sewers, flooding and backups may happen every time it rains heavily. If this is the case, a commercial property owner may want to consider having a basement drain raised and an ejector pump installed or having a sewer backwater device such as a check valve or gate valve installed. Keep in mind that waste and storm drainage cannot flow through while this valve is closed, which may make it less desirable for installation in large commercial buildings.

If you own commercial property in a region that frequently experiences sewer backups due to rainwater, the best option may be an endorsement on a business property insurance policy. This coverage can help to offset the cost of professional cleaning and restoration after a sewer backup in Jasper, GA.

How Big Is Too Big: When To Call a Mold Remediation Specialist

10/27/2021 (Permalink)

Wooden structure with black mold Mold growth in a Dawsonville, GA home.

When To Call a Mold Remediation Specialist

A dank or musty smell in your home in Dawsonville, GA, could be a sign of mold growth problem. How big that problem is determining who should be involved in getting rid of it. While you can probably handle very small mold issues on your own, it is better to leave most house mold remediation to the professionals.

What You Can Handle

If you see a small patch of mold growing on a dirty plate in the kitchen sink, you are probably not going to hire someone to take care of it. You can’t just wipe it off or cover it up, though. For very small mold problems such as this, you can likely handle them yourself with the proper precautions:

  • Don the appropriate protective clothing, covering your hands, eyes, mouth, and nose.
  • Clean with detergent and rinse completely.
  • Dry items thoroughly before storing them.

Prevention is the best solution of all. You can help prevent mold by cleaning regularly and maintaining proper ventilation and airflow to all areas of your home.

What the Experts Can Do

If your house mold is a bigger problem, however, professional help is necessary. A prolonged leak can cause extensive water damage, which is a breeding ground for mold growth. If the water that caused the damage was contaminated, additional steps might be required to fix the problem. Mold in your air ducts or other parts of your home’s HVAC system requires an expert’s attention. If you suspect that mold has gotten inside your walls or under your flooring, you need certified technicians to test the area and resolve the issue.

Failure to address a house mold problem in the appropriate way only makes it worse. Unless the growth is tiny, taking care of it most likely requires the work of professional mold remediation specialists. Resolve your mold issue completely by calling in professionals when necessary.

Understanding Commercial Property Insurance Coverage

10/27/2021 (Permalink)

a young man in suit in his office showing an insurance policy and pointing with a pen where the policyholder must to sign What’s covered under commercial insurance depends on the package you choose.

Commercial Property Insurance

Commercial property insurance can be a highly complex topic that some business owners struggle with. What’s covered? What isn’t covered? What affects the costs of your premiums by driving them up or driving them down? Let’s take a look at what commercial property insurance looks like for property owners in Jasper, GA.

What’s Covered Under Commercial Property Insurance

Many times, what’s covered under commercial insurance depends on the package you choose. You may choose a bare minimum package that only covers liability for any damages not of your own making, or you may choose a more extensive package. Some things you can cover with commercial property insurance include:

• Structural damage caused by fire, accident, or natural disaster
• Theft of property or inventory
• Damage caused by trespassers or vandalism
• Fire, flood, or accident damage to equipment, furnishings, and inventory
• Personal injury liability on premises

What Brings Your Premiums Up

Multiple factors may impact why a commercial insurance provider would raise premiums on your building. If you live in an older building with a high risk of fire, for example, you may pay more for insurance. Your industry also matters; a restaurant has a much higher chance of fire than a daycare center. Neighborhood and proximity to fire services and police services can also play a role.

What Drives Your Premiums Down

That said, commercial insurance providers can also help you find ways to bring your premiums down. Just installing a security system can be enough to bring your premiums down by reducing your likelihood of theft or unwanted intrusion. If your building is constructed from newer fire-retardant materials, you may also see a drop in premiums.

The location once again has an impact, and the closer you are to fire and police services the lower your premium can be. Lastly, if your business is in a low-risk industry that doesn’t frequently have hazardous materials or situations on the property, you can hope to enjoy lower premiums.

Everything You Need To Know About Drain Cleaners

10/13/2021 (Permalink)

Chemical agent used to unclog some pipes. Digital illustration. Drain cleaners have some properties that can damage your pipes.

When you are dealing with a clogged drain at home, it may sound tempting to just pour a chemical cleaner to eliminate the problem. However, this is not always the right solution. Drain cleaner has some properties that can damage your pipes and wreak havoc on your home in Cumming, GA. Educate yourself about this type of cleaner to use it appropriately.

The Basics of Chemical Cleaners

Liquid cleaners used in sewage cleaning can be either oxidizing, caustic or acid. No matter the type of chemicals, they create heat that dissolves organic blockage such as food, hair, or grease. Specifically, the cleaner triggers an electron transfer that either adds to or removes electrons from the organic matter. The heat generated by this exchange then weakens the clog, making it easier to flush away.

Potential Damage and Consequences
Despite the convenience of these cleaners, they are not ideal for every clogged drain case. There are specific situations where they can damage the pipes.

  • Plastic pipes
  • Older and weaker metal pipes
  • Complete drain blockage

The strong chemicals can diminish the pipes, leading to extensive water damage that only an emergency remediation service can fix. They also have secondary effects on both your health and the environment. Prevent these consequences by limiting use to partial blockage made of organic materials and only as a last resort when alternatives fail.

Alternatives to Cleaners
There are a couple of solutions to try before deploying a drain cleaner. First, you can go the mechanical route by using tools to manually unclog the drain. Augers and plunges are the most common devices for this method. If it does not work, try enzymatic cleaners. These products contain enzymes, or bacteria, that break down the clog. They usually take a day to unblock the pipe, but they are a safer option.
While chemical cleaners are a fast solution for a clogged drain, they are not always effective and should be used when out of options. Ensure your situation meets the right criteria before using this agent.

Your Guide to Roof Repair After Hail and Heavy Winds Damage Your Shingles

9/19/2021 (Permalink)

Rain on roof. If your home has extensive roof damage because of hail and heavy winds, request a quality inspection before investing in roof repair.

Everyone loves a good end-of-summer storm, but when the nights grow cooler and the winds grow stronger, those nice summer storms turn into damaging tempests. Hail, heavy winds, and torrential rains may be exciting to watch from within, but they're harmful to a home's structure. If your roof was recently the victim of hail and wind damage, you may be able to get away with a small roof repair—or you may be forced to invest in roof replacement.

A quality inspection can give you an indication of which you will need:

• Have your roof tested to determine its existing condition and life expectancy.
• Have a moisture survey of your roof done.
• Let a professional roofer assess the extent of the damage—is it just a patch or it is the entire roof?
• Request a weather impact condition report to see if your roof was even subject to the hail.

When searching for a roofing company, make sure that it offers each of the above services.

A Quality Inspection Is Key

Roof repair goes beyond patching a damaged area and calling it a day. If you want to ensure that your roof lasts for years into the future, and if you want to preserve the structural integrity of your home, you need to make sure that the company you hire actually fixes the issue and doesn't just cover it.

Each of the tests listed above is performed to measure the reliability of your roof's remaining materials. The last thing you want to do is pay thousands of dollars to have your roof re-shingled only to discover that the core of the roof damage lies along the deck. If that were to happen, you would be forced to remove the shingles you paid thousands of dollars to have installed, rip up the deck, reinstall a new deck and reinstall the shingles—a process which would cost you an additional good sum of money.

If your home has extensive roof damage because of hail and heavy winds, request a quality inspection before investing in roof repair. Talk to your Forsyth, GA, storm damage restoration team about the importance of a quality inspection.

Be Proactive to Avoid Flood Damage

9/14/2021 (Permalink)

Flooding in living room. Dealing with flood damage can be a costly and time-consuming situation.

For businesses in Marble Hill, GA, it is more a matter of when not if flooding will happen. While it may not be possible to protect structures from flood damage, taking a proactive approach can help minimize losses and make dealing with the aftermath a little smoother.

Ways to Minimize Damage

Storm damage means trying to keep unwanted water from entering the building. Unfortunately, water can be tricky and find its way in through various means. Before the next storm starts brewing, consider the following to reinforce known areas of saturation:

  • Keep drains and ditches free of leaves, mulch, and debris. If there is a storm drain nearby, ensure it is not blocked. Regularly clear debris from drains and ditches.
  • Downspouts and gutters can easily get clogged, which means improper drainage onto the foundation. Regularly check them and keep them clean.
  • Improper grading can lead to water accumulating around the foundation. Ensure the ground slopes away from it. Additional dirt or sod may be needed to get the right grading.
  • The foundation itself can eventually have seal issues or small cracks. A regular foundation inspection makes it easier to find those small issues before they become a big one.
  • If located in an area prone to floods, keep sandbags stored on the property that can be used to block rising waters.

Consider a Few Upgrades
If your business has experienced flood damage, you don’t have to deal with the cleanup alone. A water damage and restoration expert can help get your business back to “Like it never even happened.” Once your business is returned to normal, it may be worth considering adding a few upgrades to avoid a repeat. Flood skirts and barriers can be attached to windows and doors. There are also a number of flood detection systems on the market, including smart devices, that feature sensor and alarms when water is detected.


Dealing with flood damage can be a costly and time-consuming situation. Although it may not be possible to entirely avoid, staying ahead of the game by being prepared can make a big difference.

Understanding Secondary Water Damage

9/7/2021 (Permalink)

Large loss equipment outside. The best prevention of secondary water damage in your commercial property is responding quickly when you notice there is a problem.

When you have a leaky pipe in your building in Forsyth, GA, it is in your best interest to get it fixed as soon as possible. Not only does it save you money on your utility bill, it also helps you prevent secondary water damage. Secondary damage can manifest as aesthetic problems, structural issues or black mold. It can increase the cost of your insurance claim and, as it is mostly preventable, may not even be covered by your commercial property policy.

Causes of Residual Damage

Secondary damage includes issues that are indirect consequences of a water problem. There are many reasons why this residual damage may occur:

• Lack of timely reporting to water mitigation experts
• Hidden issue undiscovered until the damage had already happened
• Improper or incomplete repair procedures
• Failure to reduce the high humidity in the building
• Problem more extensive than technicians could handle in a timely manner

Any of these situations can result in secondary water damage. Until the problem is remedied, more damage can continue to pile on.

Types of Secondary Damage

Problems such as black mold most often occur because the excess water has no place to go. It starts to evaporate the longer it sits, significantly increasing the moisture in the air and on surfaces. This is the perfect setup for mold growth. The high humidity can also affect sheetrock, drywall, and plaster, causing them to become waterlogged and sag. Flooring is affected, too, as the water loosens tiles, dissolves the adhesive that holds vinyl to the floor, and makes hardwood floors swell and buckle. The longer the area remains humid, the worse the damage is likely to get.

The best prevention of secondary water damage in your commercial property is responding quickly when you notice there is a problem. Even if you don't think the problem is that big of a deal, contact mitigation experts to cover your bases. It's better to hear that you don't need their services than to find out later that you should have called.

Cleaning Out Your Closet… And Pantry… And Basement… And: What Can You Salvage After a Flood?

9/2/2021 (Permalink)

Large equipment outside loss. Content cleaning can be an exhausting process because it stresses you not only physically but emotionally.

A flood has hit you, and now the long process of content cleaning begins. While you will likely want to keep everything and salvage as many memories as possible, the unfortunate reality is that flooding causes black water, which is toxic for both humans and pets. This does not mean that everything must go, but it does mean that you may have to part with some things that hold significant intrinsic value.

1. Nonporous Materials Can Likely Be Saved

As nonporous materials are things that cannot be penetrated by the water, these types of items can typically be salvaged. Some examples of nonporous materials are solid plastics, ceramics, metal, and glass, meaning that most dishes and even jewelry can be saved; however, all will have to be extensively disinfected.

2. Porous Materials Likely Can’t Be Saved

Unfortunately, as porous materials can easily be penetrated, these types of items likely can’t be saved. Some examples of porous materials are paper, wood, carpeting, drywall, insulation, and laminate, meaning that any photographs, draperies, flooring, and drywall that have been exposed to water should be removed because no amount of content cleaning will eliminate all the contaminants.

3. Seek Assistance from Professionals

It is understandable to be overwhelmed in this process. Flooding is invasive and destructive by definition, and no amount of preparation can prepare you for the emotional turmoil of a damaged home. Fortunately, you don’t have to make the decisions of what’s salvageable and not on your own because there are likely several restoration specialists in Forsyth, GA, who have the expertise to make that decision for you.

Content cleaning can be an exhausting process because it stresses you not only physically but emotionally; however, if you can go at the cleanup process systematically dividing items between porous and nonporous materials, you may find the process a little easier.

Mold 101

7/26/2021 (Permalink)

Hand pointing to mold growth on ceiling Mold should not take up residence in your building.

Types of Molds and How To Identify Them

In short, mold is a fungus that helps to decompose dead plants and animals by breaking down carbon material. Mold spreads through the air via spores that attach themselves to any source of food. Their spores can also grow indoors. One of the most infamous is Stachybotrys, also commonly known as “black mold.” However, this is not the only mold that can find its way into buildings. Although the exact number of species is still unknown, scientists estimate that there are thousands. Many can affect your business in Talking Rock, GA. Here are some of the most common kinds and how to identify them.

1. Aspergillus

Aspergillus is frequently found wherever dust accumulates. It typically has a brown or dark-green color. Different places this mold can spread are floors, wallpapers and air filters. Certain species are also found on food.

2. Stachybotrys

Stachybotrys earned its nickname, black mold, through its distinctive greenish-black gel-like appearance. Like many fungi, it can spread in any area with a moisture problem. That is why it is frequently found in restrooms or on walls in rooms that have experienced flooding. While some species may not pose a large threat to public safety, you can check with a reputable mold cleanup service to inspect your property in order to identify whether professional removal is necessary.

3. Cladosporium

Cladosporium can also spread in areas of high moisture. Colonies can grow in bathrooms, in basements and on any wood surface. Typically, you can spot this type of mold by its green or brown color. While it is possible to remove this type of mold yourself, calling qualified mold experts can assist in its disposal.

In nature, mold serves a natural purpose in the ecosystem. However, mold, especially black mold, should not take up residence in your building. Learning how to identify mold and who to call when you face an infestation will help you safeguard your business’s future.