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Why You Should Determine if You Have A Crawlspace Leak Today

Why You Should Determine if You Have A Crawlspace Leak Today

When was the last time you visited your crawlspace? It probably was the last time that a major household malfunction forced you into action. Once you closed that trapdoor you were glad the event was over and hoped that you would never to have to venture down there again.

Be a brave soul and venture down there at least twice a year just to check for issues, such as leaks. Leaks begin exactly how they sound, a minor inconvenience. However, they can snowball into a major headache if left to their own devices.

Why You Should Determine if You Have A Crawlspace Leak Today

Crawlspace Leaks Bring Pests

The first headache of a leak in your crawlspace is the accumulation of water. Water will attract a number of pests such as bugs and rodents to take up residence under your home. In addition to the repair bill for the leak, toss in a few visits from pest control. Until that leak is fixed, your home will be also home to colonies of unwanted residents. The result being an indefinite infestation.

Crawlspace Mold Farm

Leaks will accelerate the growth of mold in your crawlspace as well. Warm, dark, and wet give mold all the nutrition it needs to grow. As the mold spreads like wildfire throughout the underside of your home, it’s odor and health-damaging spores will leech up into the living areas.

Smells

Mold has a distinctive and irritating smell that is not only detrimental to your enjoyment of your home but indicates the presence of potentially harmful mold spores.

Do you remember the pests? The smell of their droppings can enter the home too. Your home may be clean otherwise, but you will go crazy trying to figure out what that smell is.

Structural Damage from Crawlspace Leaks

The leaks may get into the wood of your flooring and damage the foundation of the home. The bill for pest control or mold cleanup is going to be chicken feed once you see the cost of having to deal with structural damage.

If you let a leak party in your crawlspace, you may end up with mold, pests, and structural damage. RCS offers water removal, mold remediation, and reconstruction services and can refer you to plumbers and pest control to address any and all of these needs.

3 Signs Your Water Heater Needs Repair

3 Signs Your Water Heater Needs Repair

Your water heater, while you may not interact with it directly, is an appliance that your entire family uses every day. It is responsible for making water in your home warmer whenever you want it to be, from taking a shower to washing your dishes. The threat of losing your hot water is bad enough, but you also want to avoid the costly and hazardous structural damage caused by a leaky water heater. Below are the main signs of a water heater malfunction so you can get it addressed sooner rather than later.

3 Signs Your Water Heater Needs Repair

Your water is cold.

If cold water is coming from your faucets and sinks all the time, it is because your water heater has little to no more heat left. Sedimentation is a common cause of this, and it is the accumulation of sediment at the base of the heater’s tank. Faulty heating elements also cause this. We use the hot water in our homes often enough that we usually notice when the temperature drops even a little. Unless someone in the home is using more hot water than normal and draining the tank, a temperature drop is a sign that something needs to be repaired.

You hear a weird noise in its vicinity

If your heater is making popping, clunking, or rumbling noises, this is a sign that the water in your heater is boiling or overheating. The noise is primarily coming from water that is trapped under the sediment, similar to how boiled water in a pot will push up a lid that tried to keep it contained. With this in mind, it is possible for your heater to burst as a result of overheating. Again, contact a repair service right away.

There is a puddle or wet material in the water heater’s vicinity

If you notice warer near or underneath your water heater, find out where this water is coming from, fast. This could be caused by one of multiple different things from a leaky gasket to a leaky pipe to a loose fitting. Make sure that your connections are all secure and tight, with no holes or leaks anywhere. If you see a hole or notice something you cannot fix right away, shut off the water and have a repairman solve this problem.

It is also possible for the temperature pressure valve to leak water. If you see puddles forming around this valve, examine it to make sure that it is closing properly. In some cases, this valve will turn out to be defective, and will have to be replaced. A faulty temperature pressure valve needs to be replaced as soon as possible, as it can lead to very serious consequences such an explosion from your heater’s tank.

If you see rusty looking water near the base of your water heater, the base is leaking and rusting out. This is a sign to get a new heater when this happens.

After a leak, seek water extraction services to ensure the area is free of water damage and the opportunity for mold growth.

Regular Examinations

Be sure that you are following a scheduled examination of your water heater from qualified professionals, as it is the most effective way to identify, solve, and prevent these problems in the future. It is also necessary to drain your heater at least once a year to fully clean it of sediment.

 

Flooded Water Leak Don't Extract Water Yourself

Flooded? Water Leak? Don’t Extract Water Yourself

Yikes! Your room, or home, is flooded. Should you extract the water yourself or should you call a professional? DIY works for many things, but water extraction isn’t one of them. This is a job best left to the professionals, and here’s why:

Floor Coverings

Depending on the type of water damage and the type of floor covering you have, your flooring might be salvaged. If you have carpeting, and it can stay, a professional extraction using a weighted extractor must be used to get all the water out of both the carpet and padding. A rug cleaner or wet/dry vac absolutely will not do the job. The same is true for wood floors; specialized equipment must be used to remove water from underneath a solid wood floor. Floating floors like Pergo must be torn out, but tile can usually stay.

Type of Water

Are you dealing with clean water, grey water, or contaminated (black) water? Industry professionals know the water types and the remediation measures required for each, so leave this job to us. Contaminated water removal requires special safety equipment and procedures so that the rest of your house does not become contaminated.

Environmental Concerns

Your flooded room may seem dry after you’ve used the wet/dry vac, but it is likely not very dry at all. Professionals have electronic sensors, air movers and dehumidifiers to help dry out your house. We use specific formulas to calculate how much equipment you will need to do the job. To do the job right, there must be air movement and dehumidification, otherwise you’ll have a mold issue in no time.

Moisture Mapping

How do you know that your house is truly dry? We bring moisture meters and thermal imaging cameras to find the wet spots in your house. We target those areas to make sure your house is dry in every spot.

Insurance Documentation

Not to be overlooked, having a professional document everything that your insurance company needs is a huge timesaver and stress reliever. We use a standard documentation package that’s over 50 pages long, and we guarantee it is what your insurance company needs. Our documents also come in handy when you sell the home and need this paperwork for the new owner.

Water remediation is a very complex business. Every step must be done right. Give us a call. We’re open 24 hours and ready to help with your water damage.

Tips To Protect Your Home From Disasters

Tips To Protect Your Home From Disasters

There’s never a good time for a disaster to strike your home. You can, however, be prepared for when the unexpected happens. Here are action steps you can take now to better protect your home from disasters.

Routine Maintenance

When it comes to fire damage, most fires are caused by electrical malfunctions. Prevent fires from ever happening by making sure all electrical cords are in excellent condition. This is one thing duct tape can’t fix.  If you have exposed wires, call an electrician to take care of the problem. Additionally, check to make sure all major appliances are plugged directly into wall outlets and not power strips or extension cords. For smaller electronics, invest in power strips that have surge protection.

Get your roof inspected regularly to insure that your roof is in excellent condition before bad weather hits. Keep your trees properly trimmed. Make sure branches are not hanging precariously over your roof.  Keep your gutters clean as they help prevent foundation issues caused by oversaturation.

Regularly check for leaks in your pipes. If there’s a leak, call a plumber to take care of it. A little leak can cause a lot of damage over time. If you will be away from your home for an extended period of time, consider shutting your water off altogether and draining the water present in the pipes. You can also invest in covers for outdoor faucets and tube pipe insulation for exposed pipes inside of the home. Both are handy for preventing pipes from bursting due to frigid conditions.

Be Prepared

No matter how well you maintain your home, disaster can strike. Here are a few supplies and strategies to have on hand when those happen:

  1. Have a water and fire-proof safe for important documents.
  2. Know where the main water valve is for your home and how to properly shut it off.  There’s nothing like coming home to water flowing from a burst pipe. It would be even worse if you didn’t know how to take care of it.
  3. Invest in a wet/dry vacuum. Having one of these on hand in the event of flooding decreases the chance of damage and mold. You’ll want to get to work right away pulling the water out of your home.

No one wants a disaster but there are ways to lessen the effects. If you keep your home properly maintained and have a few tools on hand when disaster comes knocking on your door, you’ll be prepared.

Here’s Why Water Damage Is Your Home’s Biggest Threat

Here’s Why Water Damage Is Your Home’s Biggest Threat

Did you know that more than 10,000 gallons of water is wasted each year due to leaks in homes? Or that it leads to rotting wood, rusted metal, delamination of plywood, mold growth and more? You may think of immediate water damage caused by a serious flood, but frequently it is a slow process that may go unnoticed and leads to severe consequences for your property and finances.

How water damage starts

It may start small – a tree that hovers over your house or a vent cap that loses it seal. Other times it is a broken water line or toilet seal, or leaks from a washing machine or dishwasher. Another cause of slow water damage is cracks in pipes. You may not notice the problem until it has become severe.

How water seeps in

Over time with freezing and expansion, the water finds its way in through a crack, and you notice a leak in your ceiling, bubbling under the laminate floor, damp carpeting or raised paint on the wall. In basements or crawl spaces, you may see damp wood, cement or ground.

How water damage progresses to destruction

As the leak continues, it begins to cause damage to the surrounding materials including roof, plywood, insulation, drywall, flooring, supports, and joints. It can even cause cracking in concrete surfaces. As you can tell, there are some serious consequences. Water damage can potentially leave your home unlivable.

What you can do

Be aware of your surroundings. Take a review of your home every quarter to check potential areas for water collection and damage including your roof, vent pipes, water lines, doors, windows, kitchens, bathrooms, utility sinks, refrigerators, freezers, dishwashers, washing machines and basements. As soon as you notice areas of concern, seal or repair it, or contact a handyman to help.

What to do after water damage

RCS can help you to clean, repair and reconstruct your home or business after water damage. We offer services for mold prevention, mold removal, water extraction, crawlspace cleanup, and reconstruction services. Contact us to discuss how we can help you to get control over water damage.

 

5 Things to Do to Prevent Water Damage

For most people, the purchase of our home is the largest single expenditure we will make in our lifetime.  With the purchase price plus interest, the real cost of your home is often two or three times the original dollar amount.  The best thing a homeowner can do to protect their investment is to be on the lookout for possible problems that may damage their home.  One of the most insidious causes of home damage is water.  Water can work its way into many places unnoticed by the people living in it.  Unwanted water can rot out your home’s walls, floors, and roof, and can be a fertile breeding ground for molds and fungi. 

So what can homeowners do to prevent water damage from occurring in their homes?  The following five tips can help you greatly reduce the chances of water damage happening to you and your home:

1) Watch where you plant – Try to think ahead when you are planting trees or shrubs around your home.  Fast-growing varieties with extensive root systems can grow rapidly.  Invasive roots can easily cause damage to water pipes, sprinkler pipes, or sewer drains and septic systems.  Roots can also cause your home to shift, causing breaks or cracks in the exterior that allow rain or moisture into the walls.  Think about how large your tree or shrub will be in twenty years, and allow it room to grow.

2) Keep your gutters clear – If your roof gutters are full of debris, they can’t properly do their job.  Water from blocked gutters can spill over and go where you don’t want it.  This can lead to damage to your roof, walls, or foundation.  Make it a habit to clean your gutters every fall, or to have a professional do it for you.

3) Watch your bill – An easy way to identify if you have a water leak is to review your bill every month.  If your water system is leaking, your water bill will jump sharply up, showing you a drastic increase in water usage.  All water leaks have the potential to cause extensive damage to your home over time.

4) Use a snake, not chemicals – When you have blockages in your sink or shower drains, try to use a snake to clear the blockage.  The harsh chemicals used to bust through those pesky clogs may damage your pipes as well.  Frequent chemical use will eventually eat holes in your drain lines and cause water leaks that you probably won’t notice. 

5) No grease – Never pour grease into your sinks.  The grease will congeal as it cools and lead to blockages.  Hot water will not fix the problem.  Grease clogs are hard to clear up, even with a mechanical snake.  Do yourself a favor and make it a habit to pour your cooking grease into a can to cool, or scrape cold grease out of your pans into the garbage.

Your home is your largest investment.  Protect that investment from potential water damage by following these five helpful tips.  If you are unable to perform any of these necessary actions, consult a service professional for advice and assistance.