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What Is Smoke Damage?

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Fires can cause a variety of problems. However, even when it’s put out, it can still create a lot of issues, including smoke damage. Because it’s so widespread and often hidden, this damage can be difficult to fix. Below is more about the dangers of smoke and how you can eradicate it.

What is Smoke Damage?

Smoke damage is an issue caused by exhaust from a fire. Unlike fire damage, smoke damage doesn’t burn items but rather coats them in thick soot. This not only causes the objects to turn black but can give them an unpleasant odor.

Why is it a Problem?

Smoke damage isn’t only unsightly but incredibly dangerous. This issue can create a thick mixture of various gases. As it settles into the air and on items, you’ll end up breathing this substance in. This will end up irritating your lungs and causing them to become inflamed. It could also irritate your skin and cause allergic reactions.

Signs You Have Smoke Damage

This problem isn’t just soot on the wall after a fire. It can cause many other issues, some of which include:
  • Rusting metal hardware
  • Dizziness
  • Light discoloration on your ceilings and floors

How Smoke Damaged is Fixed

Smoke damage can be an exhausting thing to deal with. But, it can be treated with professional help. Air Circulation: One of the most important things to do after smoke damage occurs is to ensure there is adequate air circulation. Proper ventilation will remove odors and particles to help refresh the space. Vacuuming: Experts have special vacuums that can quickly remove soot from fabric while also neutralizing odors. These will help get various soot layers off of the material while preventing further damage to it. Chemical Sponges: To fully remove smoke damage, chemical sponges will sometimes be used. These are dipped into a special solution that dissolves left-behind debris.

Can I Remove Smoke Damage Myself?

You can remove some parts of smoke damage, but for a deep clean, you’ll need the help of a professional. But, if you want to get to work cleaning portions of it there are a few ways you can do so. These include:
  • Dipping a sponge into a warm soapy mixture and dabbing it on the area.
  • Sprinkling baking soda over affected pieces to remove odors.
  • Open your windows to encourage air flow.
Smoke damage is a serious problem that can cause both structural concerns and health issues if not fixed. If you need smoke damage removed, RCS can help. Our experts will get to work quickly cleaning the area to make sure it’s safe to be in again.

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Common Spring Septic Problems

septic system

As warmer weather starts to return, it’s important to ensure your septic system is ready for it. Here are a few common problems to watch out for and a handful of ways you can prevent them so you don't have to call us to clean up a septic backup in your bathroom.

3 Frequent Septic Problems

Blocked Pipes: A common problem in the spring is blocked pipes. Over the winter, grease and other debris can build-up inside them. Sometimes, tree roots could also start to spread into the pipes as warm weather returns. When the pipes are obstructed, waste is unable to flow through them. This could cause it to get stuck and eventually back-up into your home’s plumbing system. Overflows: Septic overflows are usually due to clogged pipes or another type of blockage. Your septic system will try to work normally, but due to these problems, is unable to do so. This will cause its pipes to slightly burst which can create sinkholes. It can also damage the plumbing lines inside your living space and can cause nasty odors to linger in it. Standing Water: Standing water is a recurrent problem during the spring. While it could be caused by a burst pipe, many times, it’s due to excessive rain. Because the water has nowhere to drain, it will rest on the top of the septic system. This can create a muddy mess that will flood your yard if not drained.

How to Prevent Septic Issues

Change the Filters: It’s a good idea to change your filters each time spring rolls around. This will prolong your system’s lifespan because it will stop clogs. The filters will also prevent large debris from getting flushed into the septic system. Adjust Your Gutters: Spring can bring heavy rain. If your gutters are pointed toward your septic system, that excess water can overwhelm the system. Before the season arrives, make sure to point your gutters away from the septic field. This way, water won’t flood the area. Get it Pumped: Another way to avert septic issues is to get it pumped. This will remove all debris from the tank so new waste can easily be sent into it. Regularly pumping it will also help professionals see if there might be a hidden problem that could potentially cause severe damage. Keeping your septic system working correctly is crucial if you want to prevent pricey issues. If you’re concerned about your septic system or want to have a quick inspection done, contact RCS. Our Santa Rosa, CA experts can check for standing water in and around your foundation and recommend a local septic service professional if need be.

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3 Tips to Keep Your Attic Spotless

home attic

Many use their attics as a storage space, but it has a much greater purpose than just holding items. In fact, attics are used to keep your home insulated and even protect your living space from structural damage. This post will explore more about why it’s vital to keep this space in good condition.

Why Do I Need to Clean My Attic?

You might be surprised to learn that it’s crucial to clean your attic. Here are a few reasons why. It Removes Pests: Numerous pests, like rats and cockroaches, will live in your attic if they have enough places to hide. If your attic has numerous boxes or a build-up of insulation and debris, it will become a haven for them. By cleaning out your attic, it will discourage them from living in the space. It Improves Air Quality: Cleaning your attic can also improve your home’s air quality. By removing dust and other particles, it will open up your duct system. This can prevent the pieces from getting sucked into the vents and being blown throughout your home. Besides giving you fresher air, it will also prevent respiratory irritation. It Cuts Back On Your Energy Bill: While an attic is a great storage space, too many items in it can become a problem. This is because the weight can create cracks in the floors and walls that can cause air to seep out. Due to this, your heater and air conditioner will end up overworking because it’s trying to heat up or cool down the space. By cleaning it, you can easily prevent this pricey problem.

3 Tips to Keep Your Attic Spotless

There are plenty of ways you can keep your attic clean. Here are a few tips to keep in mind. Use a Vacuum: While sweeping can help, vacuuming is often better. This is because it will remove debris rather than just brushing it around. Check for Mold: You’ll also want to look for mold in your attic. If you see some growing, it’s important to remove it as soon as possible. Otherwise, it could cause structural damage and affect your living space’s air quality. Be Consistent at Cleaning: One of the best ways to keep your attic spotless is to be consistent with cleaning it out. By dedicating a day or two each month to removing junk and vacuuming the space out, you can keep your attic in good condition. Keeping your attic clean is important if you want to prevent pests and other problems. In Sonoma County, RCS can assist with this by sending out a team to inspect the space. They can give you guidance as to how it could be cleaned and check that there aren’t any underlying issues.

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The Importance of Good Air Quality

mom with child in sunny window

Good air quality is something most homeowners take for granted. However, most often don’t realize when their residence’s air quality is poor or causing negative health effects. This article will explain more behind the causes of poor air quality and a few ways you can avoid it.

What Causes Poor Air Quality?

A handful of things could result in poor air quality throughout your home. Some of the most common are pet dander, mold spores, dust mites, pesticides, and rodent feces. If these issues aren’t removed or fixed, they can result in many dangerous problems. These include:
  • Allergic reactions
  • Headaches
  • Sinus congestion
  • Dry eyes
  • Dizziness
  • Fatigue

Why You Need to Maintain Good Air Quality

There are many reasons why it’s important for you to maintain good air quality in your living space. One is that it will prevent menacing health issues, such as those listed above. By ensuring the air is clear from chemicals and other toxins, you can be sure you’re only breathing in fresh air. In addition to this, poor air quality could cause damage throughout your home. This is because if the particles aren’t properly filtered out of the air, they could settle on devices, air filters, and walls which could ruin them.

3 Ways to Improve Your Home’s Air Quality

Clean or Replace Air Filters: Air filters are designed to catch debris as it floats through the air. However, if they’re clogged, they will be unable to do so. Ideally, replace air filters once a month. If you plan to clean an air filter, take a towel, gently wet it, and scrub the filter off. Have Consistent Crawlspace Inspections Done: You might be surprised to know that your crawlspace plays a huge role in how well your home’s air quality will be. Because air rises, anything inside the crawlspace will get circulated into your home. If there are toxins or mildew in it, they will get pushed into your home’s air. You can hire a professional to inspect this space to ensure there isn’t mold or pests living in it that could be affecting your home’s air quality. Purchase Air-Filtering Plants: A unique way to ensure your home’s air quality is good is by using plants. Through photosynthesis, plants will absorb toxins, like formaldehyde, while releasing oxygen. Some of the best options to use for this purpose include peace lilies, Chinese evergreens, snake plants, and rubber plants. It’s crucial that your home maintains good air quality if you want to avoid dangerous health concerns. If you’re worried your home has poor air quality, contacting RCS in Santa Rosa. We offer a variety of services, such as crawlspace clean-up and rodent feces removal, that will help to eradicate issues that cause this problem.

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Easy Ways to Prevent Water Damage

repair under floor

Water damage is a common problem in many homes around Sonoma County. It can cause serious destruction which can be both costly and detrimental to your health. This article will explore some of the most common water damage problems and a few ways you can prevent it.

Problems Water Damage Can Cause

Water damage can be broken down into three different categories: clean, gray, and black. No matter what type of water damage is in your home, it can be very harmful to a structure’s foundation and your health. Some of the most common issues caused by it include: It can cause such serious side effects because it harbors mold. If not removed, this mold will wear down essential parts of your home and irritate your respiratory system.

How to Prevent Water Damage

  • Regularly Check Your Appliances: Appliances such as dishwashers and washing machines use a lot of water. If there’s a leak in their tubes, it could spread into the surrounding walls. Some signs that indicate that they might be leaking include:
    • Puddles of water around the appliance
    • Low water pressure
    • Disconnected hoses
    • There are yellow spots on the walls near them
    • A strong mildew odor
  • Use Water Detection Devices: A water detection device can be useful to stop water damage. You can connect this product to an appliance where it will monitor its water flow. If it senses something is amiss, it will immediately send out an alert. Most water detection devices can be synced to your phone so you can get up-to-date information.
  • Adjust Your Gutters: Many are surprised that their gutters could be the culprit behind their home’s water damage. Gutters are designed to carry water. If they are pointed toward your home, the water will flow near it. If there are cracks in your foundation or walls, the water will seep into them. To prevent this, make sure that your gutters are properly installed and turned away from your home.
  • Have Inspections Done: One of the best ways to prevent water damage is to have regular professional inspections done. This way, you can be sure there isn’t any hidden damage and get it quickly repaired if there is.
Water damage is a serious problem that needs to be fixed as soon as possible. If you suspect you might have a leak or want to prevent one, contact RCS. We’ll send a team out to examine and fix the area of concern.

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5 Benefits of Dehumidifiers


If you have mold issues or find your living space has stuffy air, a dehumidifier might be ideal to invest in. This article will explain more behind this helpful device and a few benefits it offers.

What is a Dehumidifier?

A dehumidifier is a device that controls indoor humidity. When turned on, it will pull in hot air. It will wrap this hot air around a cold coil which will remove the moisture from it. It will then pass the water through its drain pipe, push it by its warm coil, and then release dry air back into the room.

Signs You Need to Use a Dehumidifier

There are a few signs you can look for that indicate you might need to use a dehumidifier.
  • Mold splotches
  • Strong musty odors
  • Your windows have heavy condensation on them
  • There is poor ventilation

5 Benefits of Dehumidifiers

It Eliminates Allergies: One of the best benefits of dehumidifiers is that they eliminate allergies. This is because they draw in humid air, something which invites mold spores and pollen to float around in it. They’re also able to prevent dust build-up which can prevent the spread of dust mites. Minimize Mold Growth: Because dehumidifiers pull humidity from the air, they can stop mold growth. As they continue to run, they will make sure that the air stays at a consistent temperature which will eliminate future mold growth. While it doesn’t kill mold, it does stop it from spreading. It’s Energy Efficient: This device doesn’t use much power to run making it perfect for those who want something eco-friendly. After running for just two to three hours, it will be able to filter through most of your home’s air. It Removes Odors: Another benefit of dehumidifiers is that they remove odors. Humidity does create mold growth, something which can result in musty smells. Dehumidifiers prevent this by removing mold and circulating fresh air back into the room. It Keeps Your Home Comfortable: If your home has stuffy air or if its temperature doesn’t stay consistent, dehumidifiers might be good to install. It removes humidity that causes stuffiness and ensures that your living space stays at one temperature. Dehumidifiers are great devices to use if you want to prevent mold and other dangerous particles from floating around in your home. If you’re concerned that your residence might already have mold damage, RCS in Santa Rosa can help by inspecting the area of concern and offering ways as to how we can quickly remove it.