Fix Up Your Firebox
Unsightly cracked and crumbling mortar inside a fireplace can be fixed in minutes with a few simple tools.
The mortar in most brick joints consists of sand, lime, and Portland cement. But in a fireplace, that mix just crumbles away when subjected to roaring wood fires. For this application, masons rely on a refractory mortar made of magnesium silicate, which can withstand beat up to 2,000 degrees F. Yet even refractory mortar can fail as the brickwork expands and contracts with repeated fires. Fortunately, fixing those damaged joints is a snap, thanks to high-temp fireplace mortars packaged in caulk tubes.
- Nitrile gloves
- 5-gallon bucket
- Sponge with abrasive pad
- Grout-removal tool with triangular carbide blade
- Stiff-bristle brush
- Wet/dry vac
- Nylon-bristle brush
- Refractory mortar
- Caulk gun
- Tuck-point trowel
- Wash the brick: Put on nitrile gloves, then thoroughly scrub soot off the sides of the firebox with an abrasive pad on a wet sponge. Soot dissolves fairly easily when wet. The washing also dampens the brick and mortar, a necessary step before repointing.
- Dig out the loose mortar: Using a grout-removal tool fitted with a triangular carbide blade, scrape out cracked, loose, and crumbling mortar. Stop when the sides of the blade touch the edges of the brick. The blade’s triangular shape prevents it from going too deep (more than half the width of the joint). Clean the joints with a narrow, stiff-bristle brush and sweep up the mortar crumbs with a wet/dry vac.
- Wet the joints: Go over all the scraped joints with a nylon paintbrush, dipping repeatedly into a bucket of clean water. Refractory mortar bonds best to a damp surface, and the brush bristles ensure that all of the old brick and mortar are moistened.
- Caulk the joints: After slipping a tube of refractory mortar into a caulk gun, drag the tube’s nozzle over all the scraped mortar joints, leaving behind a fat bead of caulk. Make sure to fill any gaps between the hearth and the firebox floor.
- Pack the mortar: Use a 3/8-inch-wide tuck-pointing trowel to smooth and press the soft mortar firmly into each of the joints, then scrape off the excess with the trowel’s edge. In corners, use a gloved finger to pack and smooth.
- Wipe away the residue: Multiple swipes with a damp sponge with remove most of the mortar residue. Wipe the brick again in 24 hours, after the remaining residue dries to a haze. This mortar’s heat-resistant qualities kick in when it reaches 500 degrees. Either a heat gun or a small, brief fire will serve the purpose.
Keeping your firebox in tip-top shape is just one step in keeping your fireplace in good working order, and preventing home fires.
SERVPRO'S Reconstruction and Remodeling Services
A finished kitchen remodel that was done by our reconstruction team!
Did you know that in addition to water mitigation, fire cleanup, and mold remediation, SERVPRO also offers reconstruction services? After our pros are done with drying out a home or removing smoke-damaged materials, we can put homes back together just like they were before the damage occurred. The convenience and savings of working with one company to assist with mitigation and repairs can be significant. In addition to reconstruction after damage, we also do general home remodeling. Have you been considering remodeling your kitchen? We can help. Does your bathroom need an update? We do that too. From drywall to painting to framing and much more, we can assist with your reconstruction project!
Here are just some of the reconstruction services SERVPRO offers:
- Drywall repair and installation
- Floor repair and replacement
- Kitchen and bath installation and remodeling
- Cabinet and trim replacement
- Insulation installation
- Ceiling repair
- Fixture replacement
Do you know how to shut off the water at your work?
Now that's a huge water damage!
Many workplaces always call's on the boss or the maintenance man when something goes wrong. What if they were home sick, or in a meeting and you need to locate the water shut off, where do you start?
SERVPRO of Orange County can help commercial property in planning for a water, fire, storm damage. How, with a free Emergency Response Profile created by the SERVPRO Marketing Department.
By having a plan of action and including it into your regular training at your office you can minimize the cost if an unplanned event happens like a frozen pipe, fire, or anything.
Some property manager use this as a tool to keep everything organized in one central location.
Is your business ready for a disaster. Even a simple pipe burst can cause a lot of damage and headache. With a SERVPRO® Emergency READY Profile it can have the critical information to minimize damages, provide the resources for the employees of the company, and provide property details and information. This is a FREE services that we provide to commercial properties.
Make an appointment today to get started!
If the unthinkable happens, call your local SERVPRO of Orange County Professionals at (845)-342-3333 seven days a week 24/7 to help you avoid the cost and hassle of secondary damages. We will help make it "Like it never even happened."
During the Cleaning process after a puff back
A puffback is a messy furnace malfunction that occurs when an oil burner backfires, sending soot throughout the interior of a home. It can happen all at once, covering the interior in grimy soot, or it can leak soot more gradually.
Initially, many people mistake soot for dust and simply wipe it away. However, once cleaned, this “dust” often reappears and can sometimes be accompanied by a strong, oily odor. There are several steps your clients can take to prevent damage to their home. Remind them to:
- Have the oil-burning furnace professionally checked and cleaned annually.
- Keep an eye out for traces of soot around their home.
- Install a carbon monoxide monitor. Puffbacks (and the soot they create) will increase the carbon monoxide levels in their home. A carbon monoxide monitor can help to detect the puffback in its early stages.
If soot begins accumulating on objects or walls within their home, they should turn off the heating system immediately. Contact a heating professional to service the heater and restore it to proper working order.
Fortunately, if your client does experience a puffback, SERVPRO has the knowledge and experience to complete a thorough cleaning and removal of any soot and odors. Our Fire Restoration Team will respond immediately and make it look Like it never even happened®.
Ways You Can Prevent Fires in Orange County Caused by Clogged Dryer Vents
The best way to prevent fires, in this case, is to clean out the lint hose often.
Ways You Can Prevent Fires Caused by Clogged Dryer Vents
It is no surprise to most people that having a Orange County fire within the home is incredibly damaging to anything in its path. What you probably may not realize is that, most times, fires can easily be prevented from starting in the first place. Your household dryer is a great example of this since many homeowners deal with dryer related fires all the time and the usual culprit would be a completely clogged dryer vent. In this particular case, the fire can be prevented if you maintain your dryer well throughout the year and ensure that its vent is kept clean and clear of buildup.
There are over 15,000 calls to local fire departments every single year for home-related New York fires and smoke issues. The unfortunate part is that a lot of these fires are caused by clogged dryer vents within the home. Some of these fires are very minimal, but others have been incredibly damaging when not caught in time.
To understand how these types of New York fires start within the home, you may want to know more about how dryers work. Some homeowners who are new to appliances and home maintenance may not even know that their dryer needs to be maintained. The way that dryers work is by creating hot air in the drum itself, and this is the hot air that is going to dry up your clothing. You probably know of the small lint trap on the front of your dryer when you open its door, but excess lint passes through this filter and goes through the dryer vent. The dryer vent is often located on the outside of your home so that the hot air can be released outside. Because dryers get so hot, this hot air that is being pushed out of the dryer vent to the outside world can heat up any lint that has built up in that area and start a fire. Fires related to clogged dryer vents can cause tons of damage to a person's home.
The best way to prevent fires, in this case, is to clean out the lint hose often. This is recommended to anyone who happens to own a dryer. There are special tools and services that can help to get this particular vent cleaned for you.
According to the experts at SERVPRO, they offer some of the best tips for watching out for some of the obvious warning signs that your dryer is clogged and may result in fire at some point in the near future: 1. If it takes longer than about 45 minutes to dry your clothing, it could be a sign that the dryer vent is clogged. 2. Your clothes are roasting hot to the touch after they have gone through a dry cycle. 3. The flapper on the dryer's vent may not open entirely when the appliance is actually on.
Preventing a Fire with Your Dryer 1. You should clean the vent of your dryer at least twice each year. 2. Make sure to clean out the lint trap inside of the dryer thoroughly before each cycle. 3. For those individuals who are noticing any of the above-mentioned warning signs, make sure to contact a professional company to have the appliance repaired and cleaned.
For those homeowners who were not so lucky as to catch the warning signs in time, fire damage can be a daunting thing to clean up on your own. This is where the professionals of SERVPRO come in handy, and they can work diligently on your home's fire restoration when it is most convenient for you. Make sure to contact SERVPRO at the first sign of fire damage so that the issue can be addressed immediately.
For Orange County, A Fire Damage Restoration Guide
Fire Damage Guide for an Orange County Home
As many homeowners know, fire damage to an Orange County home can produce extensive trauma on the part of the property owner. However, knowing what steps to take following this type of disaster, caused by nature or human error, can help you minimize emotional distress. You will also be better prepared to mitigate structural damage to your home by being clear-headed. Learn more about what steps you should take after your home has been affected by a fire, refer to this quick reference guide:
There are several steps you need to implement once fire damage has become a reality.
- Determine Where You Will Stay.
Once a fire has occurred, it's important that you first determine whether it is safe to reenter your home. This decision to possibly reenter your Orange County house is reserved for minor fires, not flaming infernos. In the event that there are still signs of smoke, fire, or structural damage, you should never attempt to enter the premises. In this case, it may be necessary for you to stay with a family member or in a hotel. Determining where you'll stay is not the first step to take during the process of returning your life to a state of normalcy, but it can provide an anchor. In addition to determining where you'll stay if you cannot reenter your property, it's important for you to call your loved ones and friends. Provide them with a basic overview of the situation and they may be able to help you with shelter and advice.
- Call The Professionals.
After you've determined where you'll stay, be sure to contact your insurance company and then a professional fire damage restoration company like SERVPRO. These experts will begin assessing the situation, determining a course of action, and then begin the cleanup, repair and if need be, the restoration of your property's structure. The clean-up process will involve the elimination of smoke and fire damage in addition to water removal. The water extraction procedure is of the utmost importance for lessening damage to furnishings, walls, and floors, and for stifling the growth of mold. A SERVPRO representative will also offer to communicate and coordinate the entire process with your insurance adjuster.
Dealing with your fire-damaged home in Orange County can be taxing and tiring, however, it doesn't need to be overwhelming. As a team of professionals with extensive experience in the smoke and fire damage restoration field, SERVPRO's skilled technicians can provide you with the detailed, results-driven services you need to restore your property to like the fire never happened.
Flooding from Clean Water can save you money. Call SERVPRO immediately to remediate!
Flooding from Clean Water can save you money. Call SERVPRO immediately to remediate!
The Three Types of Water that Can Flood Your Home
One of the major casualties of a flooded home is flooring, particularly carpets. Once it's soaked, both it and the underlying padding will potentially need replacing, which is an added expense that most homeowners would like to avoid. In the case of heavy flooding, whether it's from a natural disaster, broken appliance, burst pipe, or other water emergency, many people think that there's no chance their carpet can ever be saved.
Homeowners who have experienced flood damage in Orange County are often unaware that it's not just the amount of water in a home that affects whether they'll have to get new flooring, but the type of water as well. Here's some information about the three types of water damage that can occur due to flooding and how each affects carpet and rugs.
If the flood damage in your home is caused by a burst pipe, malfunctioning appliance, or tub or sink that has overflowed, odds are it's a result of what's called clean water. Basically, this type of water is treated and contains no contaminants or waste and is the least risky to clean up. When you contact SERVPRO and you have flood damage resulting from clean water, we're typically able to save your area rugs, carpeting, and floor pads so you don't have to incur the extra expense of replacing it.
This type of water doesn't contain any solid animal or human waste, but it has been used. An example of this would be a toilet that's overflown or a broken washing machine that leaks a large amount of water mid-cycle. Flood damage from gray water comes with more risks than clean water, as it has significantly more potential to cause illness if it's touched. However, the threat of disease usually isn't present since there's no solid waste. Though the carpet pad that's been soaked with gray water has to be thrown out for safety reasons, the carpet itself can often be saved. SERVPRO will carefully clean and dry it so that you can save money by only having a new pad installed.
This is the most dangerous type of water involved in flood damage and it's unsanitary because it either has organisms in it that can potentially carry disease or solid waste. If your home was flooded due to a natural disaster, storm, or sewage backup, it likely involves black water. While some area rugs can be disinfected by our team, cleaned, and thoroughly dried, carpet and padding need to be replaced for the sake of keeping your family safe.
Improving your Air Quality in Orange County, NY
Dirty Air Ducts- Improving your Air Quality in Orange County, NY
People easily assume that low quality of air in their premises arise as a result of external factors, and that they have no control over it. However, this is not true at all. Actually, people contribute a very high percentage to the air quality in their businesses and homes. Therefore, if air quality is to be improved, it must start from within. In order to start the process of purifying the internal air, we must first understand what pollutes the air in our premises.
For the homes and businesses in Orange County, there are a few factors that could be polluting air in their premises. Pollen, paint, mold and any other allergen. After understanding the various factors that lower the quality of air, people of Tennessee can now take the relevant action to address the issue.
The easiest way to improve the quality of air in premises is cleaning. First, people of Tennessee need to understand that taking a little time off every day, washing and mopping their premises can mean a great difference in the quality of air they breathe. The process can start with the regular sweeping and dusting. This aims at removing pollutants that may be in the premises. However, this is not exactly enough. Mopping and scrubbing on a regular basis needs to be done. This will ensure that tough pollutants, which cannot be removed by mere sweeping and dusting, are gotten rid of.
The next vital step, after brushing and mopping, is to ensure that there is efficient ventilation in premises. Here, people got to understand that the duct is one of the most integral parts of the ventilation system. The duct should be cleaned and maintained on a regular basis.
Air duct cleaning starts with covering openings that get air into rooms. Covering these openings ensures that allergens will not spread into other rooms during the duct cleaning process. The second step that needs to be taken when conducting the duct cleaning exercise is ensuring that the fan is turned off. This ensures that dust, pollen and debris, coming from the duct, doesn’t spread throughout the premises. Next, be sure to check that the filters are in good shape. This is a precautionary measure to ensure that none of the pollutants falling off from the duct will be blown into the motor.
After checking these vital parts of the ventilation system, it is now time to start the air duct cleaning process. This will normally start with checking the air registers. Both the return and supply air register need to be thoroughly brushed of any dirt. Next, the power source of your ventilation system should be turned off. This ensures safety while cleaning up the dirt in the blower compartment. Lastly, the filter should be changed. This will definitely enhance the integrity of your ventilation. All these can be done individually. Alternatively a qualified company can be hired to conduct the duct cleaning. Of course, hiring a qualified company guarantees better results.
SERVPRO of Orange County, can help anytime with Duct Cleaning or making sure your Air Quality is at the optimum level.
Commercial Fire Damage Restoration
When your property has been severely compromised by commercial fire damage, you will need to rely on the experts.
The damage caused by fire doesn't end when the flames are put out. On the contrary, even after the initial fire has been constrained, a host of other problems may develop.
How to Properly Control Commercial Fire Damage
When it comes to professionally controlling the commercial fire damage in your work place, your best bet is to contact the restoration service that has experience in dealing with such essential matters, SERVPRO of Orange County. While the fire itself may have caused considerable damage to your property, other elements, such as debris, smoke, and mold growth, may also soon threaten to render it uninhabitable and keep your doors closed. By calling us, we can upon agreement of you and your insurance company, begin the clean up to get your business back in business.
Fire Damage Restoration Is an All-encompassing Experience
A professional commercial fire damage restoration company like SERVPRO of Orange County offers an all-encompassing solution. It begins when you inform us about the nature of your problem. We will send a team of friendly and knowledgeable service professionals to begin an immediate inspection of the property. Afterward, we will present you with a comprehensive diagnosis of the problem along with an exact estimate of the cost for our services. You are under absolutely no obligation until you agree to have our team begin restoration work on your property, as noted.
We Offer a Comprehensive Cleanup Regimen
Once the initial assessment and inspection have been completed, SERVPRO of Orange County will conduct a comprehensive cleanup and restoration program. We will safely discard remaining debris, remediate any mold or other bacterial growth, and clean up any stains and blemishes that the fire may have caused. We will also remove obnoxious and potentially poisonous odors that may still be lingering in the building by utilizing ozone machines and foggers.
The Nature of Our Service Is Restoration Rather Than Replacement
When it comes to cleaning up the damage left behind by commercial fire damage, the essence of our service is to focus on efforts to restore rather than replace the existing property. Restoration will speed up the process to get your business up and running again. This will minimize the loss of profits that would be increased if you had to wait for a new property to be built. We also focus on restoration of damaged documents, retail stock, and furnishing to expedite your re-opening. "Like it never even happened."
Repairing the Effects of Commercial Fire Damage in Orange County
When it comes to dealing with the effects of Orange County commercial fire damage, we are your locally owned and operated restoration and cleanup authority. Call SERVPRO of Orange County at (845)-342-3333.
Facts About Flood Damage
Did you know that everyone resides in a flood zone? Even the driest areas can experience what are known as flash floods.
Even the driest areas can experience what are known as flash floods. Rivers, streams, and lakes are almost always overflowing their banks, given a couple of rainy days.
With only a few inches of water, you can have many hundreds to thousands of dollars’ worth of flood damage in your home or commercial building. A flash flood can often bring a wall of water that is 10 to 15 feet high. New construction in your neighborhood can change runoff patterns in the area and can increase our flood risks. Most insurance plans do not include flood damage, and this must be purchased separately, in most cases.
Some Other Interesting Facts About Flood Damage
The average cost of flood damage is around $5,000 to $10,000 depending on the type of damage and where the water came from, so any tips that can help prevent this has to be worth the time to try them.
- An inspection and flushing your water heater once a year, by a plumber, can contribute to preventing it bursting on you and flooding the area.
- Replacing the rubber hoses on all appliances that use water with metal braided ones can help to avoid the failing of the rubber ones as they can get hard and burst. Check all hoses; even the metal braided ones every year.
- Leaks from toilets are often indicated by a little leakage from the base. Ask everyone in the family to stand in the bathroom, after flushing and watching for any tell-tale leaks.
- Do you know where to locate the main water shut-off? If a pipe burst, inside, you need to be able to get it turned off quickly.
- If you have a sump pump, now is a good time to get it checked and think about a backup unit.
- Always be looking for signs of plumbing leaks, such as on ceilings and walls; you are looking for stains and moisture on those walls and floors.
- Leaking or even broken pipes are often gushing water, and it is not noticed because it might be hidden. Check out your water usage when no faucets are turned on; locate the water meter and take a reading, then use no water for an hour or so and read it again. Has it moved? If so, you have a leak someplace, so get a plumber to check it out.
- Always monitor your monthly water bill. If it goes up a lot one billing cycle, you might have the need for a plumber to come in and check all connections.
- Since a lot of water comes from inside your home and can damage many walls, floors, furniture and provide the moisture needed for molds to grow, doing whatever can be done to prevent leaks is a good exercise to undertake.
When you do experience flood damage in your home, call SERVPRO of Orange County at (845) 342-3333 for the flood restoration that you need, quickly.