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How To Access Assistance Through FEMA

1/11/2022 (Permalink)

FEMA US Homeland Security Citizen and Immigration Services Flyer Closeup FEMA provides both grants and loans to help you get back on your feet when devastation strikes.

How to Apply for FEMA Assistance

Around 85 percent of flood damage is not covered under homeowners’ insurance policies. If a storm were to damage your home in Federal Hill, RI, would you be in that majority? If so, learning about the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) may save your bank account.


What Is Covered?

This federal government agency coordinates financial and other supports for those impacted by a declared natural disaster. Annually, flooding is the most common calamity that damages homes, vehicles and personal property. FEMA offers the following:

• Grants are available to restore homes to a livable condition. Although this money does not need to be paid back, it frequently covers only the minimum repairs to ensure your home’s safety.
• Grants are also available for other related costs, such as temporary housing, medical costs or funeral expenses.
• Disaster loans need to be paid back. This funding often covers expenses accrued by working with a storm restoration specialist to return your property and belongings to preloss condition.

What Is the Application Process?

In order to apply for assistance, homeowners must meet set criteria. This includes evidence that damage was caused by a federally declared disaster, citizenship (including non-citizen nationals and qualified aliens) of a household member and non-duplication of insurance benefits when applicable. If these requirements are met, take the following steps:

• Initiate the process online on the appropriate government website.
• Schedule an appointment with an inspector contracted with the federal agency to visit your home. The role of these inspectors is to survey the damage caused by flooding or other declared disaster. They verify eligibility and document that you are the owner of the impacted structure or property. They also take pictures of extent of the damage.
• Following the inspection, wait for an adjustor to review the specifics of the damage and assign a monetary value for the cost of repair.

In the aftermath of a flood or other catastrophe in Federal Hill, RI, homeowners may be eligible to receive funding for disaster-related expenses. FEMA provides both grants and loans to help you get back on your feet when devastation strikes.

Clothes Dryer Safety Tips to Prevent Fires

12/31/2021 (Permalink)

hand removing lint from lint trap The lint trap should be cleaned between all loads of laundry.

Keep Your Home Safe From a Dryer Fire

Clothes dryers are involved in thousands of house fires each year, and the highest number of these occurs in fall and winter. The majority of these fires start because the dryer is not cleaned and maintained properly. Luckily, there are some simple tips available to help keep your home in Blackstone, RI, safe from a dryer fire.

1. Installation

Using the correct electrical outlet and plug to hook up your dryer is essential. To ensure that installation is completed properly and safely, consider calling a professional to connect your dryer. Like all electrical appliances, dryers come with warnings and instructions from the manufacturers, and you should read over these carefully.

2. Cleaning

The lint trap should be cleaned between all loads of laundry. The back of the dryer should also be cleared, as lint can build up in this area. Every few months, the vent pipe or exhaust should be emptied using a plumber’s snake in order to avoid a lint fire.

3. Proper Use

Using your dryer properly can also protect your home from a dryer fire. Avoid overloading your dryer with too much clothing at once. Do not dry items with rubber, foam, or plastic, such as bathroom mats with rubber backing. Never place clothing with oil, gas, alcohol, or any other flammable chemical in your dryer. Always turn the dryer off before going to bed or leaving your residence.

4. Maintenance

Routinely inspect equipment parts, such as the venting system, to ensure that there is no damage or build-up of lint. Keep the area around the dryer clean and free of anything flammable. Check outside venting for blockages, such as birds' nests. Unplug or disconnect the dryer if you will be away for an extended period.

A dryer or lint fire is almost completely preventable, but homeowners must take proper precautions. If your residence has been damaged in a dryer fire, don’t hesitate to reach out to a fire restoration service today.

Tips for Avoiding Water Damage Claims

12/22/2021 (Permalink)

Wet ceiling tiles, water damaged ceiling tiles Water has ruined the ceiling tiles in this commercial building.

Ways To Keep Your Property Safe From Secondary Damage

Every year in Federal Hill, RI, hundreds of business claims are filed as a result of water damage. Sometimes accidents are unavoidable; the damage might be the result of a flood, a pipe break, or a broken water heater.

These claims can be extremely costly, sometimes totaling ten thousand dollars or more, which could cause insurance rates to go up. And depending on what type you have, your policy might not cover certain things like secondary damage from mold.

Luckily, you can take steps to prevent or drastically reduce the amount of damage your building could sustain and save yourself from having to file a business claim. Here are a few things you can do to help keep your property safe from harm:

1. Leak Sealing

Make sure to inspect your foundation and areas around the exterior. If you find a crack or gap, make it watertight with the appropriate sealant.

2. Pipe Insulation

Any pipes that are exposed or accessible should be completely covered by insulation. If a pipe becomes frozen, it's easy for it to expand and burst. You should be able to find insulating materials at your local hardware store.

3. Drainage

It's important that water is able to drain away from the structure. Any gutters or downspouts should be kept clear of leaves or any other potential blockage, and the drainage areas should be free of debris.

4. Asset Protection

You should make sure that any valuable assets, such as electrical equipment and appliances, are raised above the floor to keep them safe from flooding. Non-waterproof valuables, such as important papers, should be stored in a secure place.

5. Consultation

It may be a good idea to consult with a professional water mitigation company about damage prevention. They can do a thorough inspection to make sure you haven't missed anything, and then give you expert, customized advice.

Filing a business claim for water damage is a hassle no one wants to have to deal with. But by taking the precautions outlined above, you can prevent most damage before it can happen.

How To Protect Your Home From Cigarette-Related Fires

12/14/2021 (Permalink)

ashtray with cigarrete Make sure that ashtrays are sturdy so that they won’t tip over easily.

Protect Your Home From Cigarette Fires

Smoking isn’t good for anyone, but it can be especially bad for your home. A cigarette fire can ignite from one carelessly placed butt, and that can result in extensive fire damage that can only be remedied by fire remediation experts. The good news is that these fires are completely preventable as long as you, your family and your guests abide by a few simple guidelines.

Keep Paraphernalia Out of Reach of Children

Children are curious, particularly about activities they see the adult around them doing. If anyone is smoking, the matches and lighters can be very tempting playthings for the younger people in the group. You can take a few precautions to minimize risk:

  • Keep lighting implements out of their reach
  • Use child proof lighters
  • Refrain from smoking while children are around

Often, if you keep lighters and matches out of the children’s sight, you take away the temptation.

Designate Smoking Areas Outside

Another way to avoid a cigarette fire in your home in Wayland, RI, is to forbid smoking inside the house altogether. Place all ashtrays outside and direct everyone who wishes to smoke to that area when they feel the need. If you eliminate the opportunity to smoke indoors, you don’t have to worry about someone being careless with their cigarettes inside after a few drinks or when he or she gets tired.

Provide Adequate Means of Disposal

Even if your smoking area is outdoors, a fire could still break out and cause damage to your property. Prevent an ashtray fire by submerging the contents in water after everyone is finished smoking. This prevents errant sparks that aren’t quite extinguished from growing into a larger flame. Make sure that ashtrays are sturdy so that they won’t tip over easily. Fire cleanup in your backyard can be a costly consequence of improper planning.

While the best way to prevent a cigarette fire is to stop using cigarettes completely, there are a few ways to lower the risk to your home. Set clear guidelines for everyone to follow, and you make your home safer.

5 Ways To Eliminate Smoke Odor

11/26/2021 (Permalink)

Ozone generator Ozone machines can remove smoke odor quickly.

Smoke Cleaning Methods

Smoke odors are persistent. Methods such as air filtration, ventilation, or wiping residue off of surfaces are not likely to be sufficient. Particles of smoke drift into air ducts, nooks and crannies, and porous materials such as carpeting, drapery, and furniture. The only way to completely eliminate smoke odor is to permanently neutralize the presence of these particles. Here are five smoke cleaning methods suitable for smoke damage restoration.

1. Ozone Machines

Ozone machines release molecules that follow the same path as smoke particles and oxidize these sources of odor. This method is popular because it works quickly, but all occupants, pets, and plants must be temporarily evacuated.

2. Hydroxyl Generators

Hydroxyl generators destroy smoke particles with radicals generated by ultraviolet light. This method does not require evacuation, but may take anywhere from three to five times as long as an ozone machine.

3. HVAC Air Scrubbers

These scrubbers connect to the central air system to circulate air and filter out smoke particles. As these systems do not neutralize odor molecules, a faint smoke odor may linger. Some odor mitigation professionals may combine an air scrubber with another smoke cleaning method.

4. Thermal Foggers

Thermal foggers fill a home with fog for approximately 30 minutes before the residence is ventilated and allowed to dry. This highly effective odor elimination method also calls for evacuation and workers must wear respirators.

5. Vapor Modification

Vapor modification neutralizes odors by dispersing an aromatic compound in a mineral oil base with the assistance of a blower or fan. There is no need to evacuate during this treatment.

Out of these five methods, only two – ozone machines and thermal foggers – require evacuation. The other three methods can be pursued while you remain at home. A smoke cleaning service can work with you to determine which treatment options are right for a residence in Mount Pleasant, RI.

What Can Cause a Basement To Flood?

11/17/2021 (Permalink)

Completely flooded basement. It is visible line showing maximum water level higher than 7 feet. A flooded basement in Wayland, RI.

Causes of Flooding In Your Basement

If you are a homeowner in Wayland, RI, you may wonder what might cause a basement flood in your house. Understanding the various possible sources can help you to be better prepared for any future floods or related damage that could occur. Here are three potential causes of flooding in your basement.

1. Poor Drainage System

A drainage system that has been set up improperly can lead to a flooded basement, especially if the downspouts are not properly located with regards to your basement. These drains should empty in the direction of your backyard or a street, rather than toward your or a neighbor’s basement.

2. Gutters That Are Blocked

Blocked gutter systems are another common source of basement flood issues. If there seem to be water issues resulting from a clogged manifold that connects your home to the Wayland, RI, sewer system, it is time to call the authorities. The massive water leaks that can result from such blockages can have disastrous effects.

3. Unfortunate Construction Errors

Sometimes, a home simply was not constructed with sound, logical building principles in mind. If your house was built on a sloped property, you may be more likely to have ongoing issues that can lead to water damage. While there is little you can do to change your situation, keep in mind that most slopes level out over time.

It can be easy to lose hope when it seems that the elements and your investment are out to get you. However, all hope is not lost when a basement flood is imminent or has already occurred. You can work to improve your drainage system, the local authorities can help with gutter system issues and any poorly planned housing locations often settle themselves, as mentioned above. If all else fails and your home becomes flooded, water damage restoration specialists can typically help you get your investment and your belongings back to the best state possible.

3 Ways To Prepare for High Winds

11/8/2021 (Permalink)

Rolling shutters Consider installing storm shutters in your property in case of heavy winds.

Prepare For Wind Or Hurricane Damage

High winds can cause extensive damage to a commercial property. If a hurricane, tornado, or strong winds tear off roofing materials or flying debris breaks a window, this can compromise the integrity of the building envelope and lead to significant storm or water damage. Here are three ways to prepare for intense wind or hurricane damage.

1. Inspect the Building

Schedule regular inspections of a commercial property to ensure that the exterior is in good shape and ask about ways to fortify a building against winds. Openings such as doors and windows and the roof are some of the most important and vulnerable parts of any structure. Strong winds can rip off shingles or other roofing materials and a hurricane or tornado can even tear the roof off of a building.

2. Install Shutters or Board Up Windows

Heavy winds tend to pick up debris that can break windows. If your property is located in a region with a high risk of hurricane damage, you should consider investing in the installation of storm shutters. You can also protect the interior of a building by boarding windows up with plywood.

3. Reduce Potential Debris

Heavy tree branches can fall and damage the roof or structure of a building. Have dead or overhanging branches trimmed on a regular basis. You should also strap down or store outdoor objects such as trash containers or moveable seating when the forecast calls for high winds. Planning ahead can help to limit the amount of wind damage a building sustains.

If flying debris compromises any part of the building envelope, it may result in flooding if rain is present. In addition to storm damage, this exposure can raise the risk of mold. Quickly resolve wind or hurricane damage by relying on the expertise of a commercial storm damage cleanup and restoration company located in Elmwood, RI.

Factors Involved in Fire Damage Estimation

10/30/2021 (Permalink)

Inside of a building destroyed by fire, empty building, Commercial fire damage in Fox Point, RI.

3 Ways to Combat Bathroom Grout Fungi

When you call fire mitigation specialists in Fox Point, RI, for a commercial fire estimate, you should expect them to take the time to assess your problem individually. You want more than someone who just offers you a generic number. You want a team that analyzes your unique situation step by step. There are several factors that professionals consider when determining how much your fire damage remediation is ultimately going to cost you.

1. Emergency Cleanup

The first cost to consider is how much immediate work needs to be done. If firefighters put the fire out in your building, you are likely to have as much damage from saving the building as you have from the fire itself. Excess water has to be extracted, and the area must be thoroughly dried to prevent mold growth. Then, soot and smoke must be cleaned from the building. Broken windows and a torn roof must be patched to prevent further damage from outside elements or theft.

2. Item Cleanup

Another line in the estimate concerns the items inside the building that show the effects of damage from the fire. Electronics, important documents, furniture and inventory must be tested and either cleaned or discarded. If items are unsalvageable, they must be documented for replacement.

3. Rebuilding

Your mitigation company should also give you the approximate cost of what it takes to restore your building to its original state. This estimate can include something as major as rebuilding part of the structure itself to something as minor as making sure the carpeting is uniform. If you want your insurance company to cover any of these costs, it is necessary to have them in the bill.

Finding a mitigation company that gives you a customized estimate of your restoration expenses is important. This helps you budget better and back up your claim with your insurance company. Your business is worth hiring professionals with attention to detail.

Only You Can Prevent a Cigarette Fire

10/25/2021 (Permalink)

Man smoking outside a balcony Smoke outside whenever possible.

The most common cause of house fires in Hope, RI, is from cigarettes, usually from smoking in bed. A cigarette fire can ignite bedding, curtains, or paper trash if not disposed of properly.

Residential fires are for the most part easy to both prepare for and prevent by taking a few simple safety measures and using good common sense. Should the worst happen, however, there are various places to turn to help get your life back together.

Tips To Prevent Fires

• Never smoke in bed.
• Smoke outside whenever possible, or next to a cracked window if the weather doesn’t allow.
• Always make certain the cigarette fire is fully extinguished. Running it under a tap before throwing it in the trash will ensure no paper waste catches lingering embers.
• Don’t toss a cigarette that’s potentially still burning into your garden.
• Regularly cleaning the ashtray will help prevent an ashtray fire and keep it free of residue. Filling it with sand will also ensure the cigarette is completely out.

What To Do If a Fire Occurs

Should a cigarette fire break out, it’s not the end of the world. First, call your insurance company to file a claim. They may also be able to recommend disaster and restoration companies for fire cleanup. Some other actions you can take are as follows:

  • Get a copy of the fire report from the fire department.
  • Carefully go through the damaged areas to recover undamaged or salvageable items.
  • Air rooms out as much as possible to avoid further smoke damage to both your home and your lungs.

There are several ways to avoid disaster, including reviewing your homeowners or rental insurance policies to ensure that they provide coverage for fire cleanup and property loss. Also, keep all important documents in a fire-proof safe or a bank safety deposit vault. This is good advice for anyone, smokers and nonsmokers alike, and will prevent the complicated process of replacing documents such as Social Security cards and birth certificates.

3 Strategies for Fighting Bathroom Grout Fungi

10/25/2021 (Permalink)

Mold growth on bathroom tiles and grout Mold growth on bathroom.

3 Ways to Combat Bathroom Grout Fungi

When it comes to weekend chores, cleaning the bathroom is probably not your favorite task as a Blackstone, RI, homeowner. Scrubbing the toilet and wiping up hair and soap residue from the sink can be daunting work, but one issue you may find especially challenging is how to remove bathroom mildew from your shower’s grout. This fungus can be stubborn once it dries into the grout; however, there are a few strategies you can use to banish it for good.

1. Create a Natural Cleanser

If you want to avoid the harshness and strong odors of bleach-based household cleaners, you can make one out of natural ingredients. You will need lemon juice, baking soda and vinegar. Mix the vinegar and lemon juice together in equal portions, then add the baking soda slowly until it forms a paste. Spread this mixture onto the grout and let it sit for twenty to thirty minutes. The ingredients in the paste should loosen the mildew and make it easier to wash away.

2. Soak the Grout Overnight in a Dishwashing Solution

When the entire family takes hot showers, this can create a humidity problem that causes mildew to form in the shower wall’s grout. If you want to avoid scrubbing this fungus away, you can soak the tile overnight in a solution of blue dishwashing liquid and a touch of white vinegar. In the morning, simply rinse the grout and wipe away any film left behind.

3. Call a Professional Mold Removal Service

If you are dealing with severe bathroom mildew, you may want to call in a professional mold remediation and removal company for assistance. Qualified technicians can bring in a variety of tools and cleaning solutions that are not available publicly to deal with stubborn mildew. These techs may also be able to provide you with strategies for keeping grout clean in the future.

Dealing with bathroom mildew in your Blackstone, RI, home can be frustrating. However, keeping these cleaning tactics in mind can help you banish fungus safely and effectively.