Fire Recovery

A fire can occur in your home no matter the time of year. You might not associate fires with winter because it’s so cold out, but a winter fire is not out of the question. A stove goes unattended, a toaster gets left plugged in, a portable furnace is running too long, a heated blanket is left turned on and sparks fly. What do you do after a fire? Whether there is damage to a room or the entire house, you may need to address structural concerns or water remediation. If there is a fire in your home or business, do you know what to do once the firefighters leave?

 

A home or business fire can be devastating for all involved. There may be smoke damage, charred items, and water damage to small items or the entire structure of the home. However, there are ways to recover; you don’t have to simply throw everything away.

 

You may want to start cleaning up your home once the firemen leave, but hold yourself back. You should call a damage restoration company first. Crews are available 24/7 for emergency service. Trying to wipe down or wash away fire remnants could negatively impact the fire damage recovery process. At the very least, you may be able to open windows. Do not use appliance until they’ve been inspected, and refrain from throwing anything away. You’ll want to document all the damage with photos so you can include them with your claim.

 

Once damage restoration experts arrive on the scene, they’ll assess damage and control any immediate hazards to prevent more damage to your home. For instance, they’ll use tarps and other sealing services if a hole was burned through your roof or siding. Then, they’ll move forward with the damage remediation process, which includes odor control, water extraction, structural drying, and complete construction. You won’t need to throw out all your damaged items—they have a slew of techniques to restore your items back to new.

 

We hope you never have to experience a home or business fire, but if you do, the experts at Royal Renovations are happy to help you restore your items.

 

Cold Temperatures are Deadly When it Comes to Pipes

Last month we talked about pipes bursting in the winter and how to prevent that cold weather nightmare. Sewer leaks can also be a problem in the frigid temperatures. You may associate sewer leaks with warmer spring and summer seasons because flooding is more common then, but winter is not exempt. The causes are numerous, from tree root blockages and toilet obstructions to defects in the sewer lines and frozen septic systems.

 

Sewage is composed of everything you put down the drain: human excrement and waste, beauty products, food waste, and so on. This mixture generates gases like carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, hydrogen sulfide, and sulfur dioxide. Sewage leaks release these gases, which can lead to sickness, disorientation, and even death. Hydrogen sulfide is toxic, and methane can lead to asphyxiation. Add in the pathogens present in sewage, which can cause major problems if ingested, and a sewage leak has the potential to be more dangerous than you may expect. Not only are the chemicals in sewage dangerous, but the leaks can also damage materials in your home, like sheetrock, carpet, and furniture. If left untreated, it can cause mold or even an unsanitary ponding condition in your yard.

 

Sewer leaks can be hard to detect, but there are a few signs to look for. You may notice an odor or gurgling noises coming from your drains or gurgling sounds when you flush your toilets. Water may be slow to drain in sinks, bathtubs, and showers. If you notice any of these symptoms, call a professional, who will complete additional testing and diagnose the problem before it gets out of hand.

 

You can do your part to prevent sewer backup all year round. Be mindful of what you are putting down your drains (or toilets). Don’t dispose of items that could cause any sort of blockage, like grease. If you don’t have a sump pump, install one and ensure it is working correctly. Make sure snow isn’t piling up on sewer vents, as it can create a blockage. You can help prevent sewer gases from entering your home by adding water to infrequently used drains, like the ones in your basement. You’ll also want to take measures to ensure your sewer vent doesn’t freeze. Don’t disrupt the septic system by flushing down chemicals or bacteria; it may interrupt the production of necessary bacteria and lead to leaks.

 

If a sewer leak does happen, not all is lost. We treat your home and personal belongings with the best care throughout the sewer backup cleanup process to restore items to their pre-loss condition if possible. Quality control is something we take very seriously.

 

Glossary of Services Provided by Royal Renovations (Part 2)

This month we continue our discussion on the emergency services Royal Renovations offers.

Our team is certified by the IICRC (Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification) in water damage restoration, renovation, microbial remediation, odor control, fire and smoke restoration, and carpet cleaning, upholstery, and fabric cleaning. We’re also experts in content processing, content cleaning, and pack-outs.

 

24/7 Claims Management

No matter the day of week or time of day, your claims will be handled in a timely fashion. We offer 24/7 emergency services, so if your pipes burst in the wee hours of the morning, count on us to provide the services you need.

 

Climate-Controlled Storage

As your items are being restored after a disaster, they will be secured in a climate-controlled storage facility to prevent further damage.

 

Complete Construction

If your property has extensive damage, reconstruction can be arranged.

 

Structural Drying

Whether due to flood damage or water damage after a fire, structural drying will remove excess moisture from wet structural materials (think: wood, concrete, sheetrock).

 

24-Hour Rush Cleaning

If you need your items cleaned quickly, Royal Renovations offers a 24-hour rush cleaning service so that your items are quickly as good as new.

 

Photo Inventory

When restoring your contents after fire, water, storm, or sewer backup damage, we will take photo inventory of all your items to ensure they are all accounted for and recorded for claims purposes.

 

Specialty Item Cleaning

If your unique items are damaged—for instance, specialty rugs—you don’t need to throw them away immediately. Oftentimes they can be restored. Just call us and ask!

 

Onsite Cleaning

For smaller damaged items, we can clean onsite on the spot. The items won’t even need to leave your property.

 

Content Tracking Software

Know where your items are at all times in the content restoration process with our comprehensive tracking software.

 

Non-Salvage Inventory 

Using our content tracking software, Royal Renovations will keep track of your non-salvage items (items that are too badly damaged to be restored).

 

At Royal Renovations, we ensure the best disaster restoration services in St. Cloud, MN. We’re here to fix your home when tragedy strikes. Call us at 320-743-3440.

 

Glossary of Services Provided by Royal Renovations (Part 1)

We get it: fire and water damage is scary. Natural disasters are devastating, sewer and drain back-up is gross, and mold growth is shocking. These things can also feel embarrassing if they happen to you, but we’re here to tell you that it shouldn’t. These problems happen to the best of us through no fault of our own, which is why we offer the emergency services you need.

Our group of managers and experts are certified by the IICRC (Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification) in water damage restoration, renovation, microbial remediation, odor control, fire and smoke restoration, and carpet cleaning, upholstery, and fabric cleaning.

We’re also experts in content processing, content cleaning, and pack-outs.

 

Emergency Board-ups

No matter the reason for the damage, emergency board-ups will prevent further damage to your home.

 

Odor Control

Sewer and drain back-up aren’t the only things that cause funky odors. No matter your emergency, Royal Renovations employs a slew of methods to effectively remove odors.

 

Content Cleaning/Restoration

It might seem like the only option after a disaster is to throw away all your damaged items, but you don’t have to. Through extensive restoration processes, your items—whether it’s your carpet or a precious family heirloom—can be brought back to life (sometimes in better condition than they were before).

 

Duct Cleaning

If your ducts are dirty, they’ll circulate mold and other airborne illnesses. Royal Renovations will clean them to make sure your ventilation system is only putting out clean air.

 

Temporary Utilities

If your home or workplace had severe fire or damage restoration, you may need temporary utilities during the reconstruction of the building.

 

Content Pack-out/in and Content Processing

If the structure of your home or office needs to be restored, we offer full content pack-outs/ins. We will organize and pack your items for temporary storage, which includes photo inventory, a detailed itemization of non-salvage contents, and transportation to our climate controlled secured facility. You’ll always have access to your items with our integrated inventory systems. When the structure of your damaged building has been restored, we’ll bring your items back.

 

Water Extraction

Whether your home flooded or there is remaining water from putting out a fire, Royal Renovations provides water extraction services so that you don’t have to live underwater any longer.

 

Moisture Readings and Post Testing

We’ll perform moisture readings to determine the moisture level of specific materials that may have been damaged, like wood or drywall.

 

We have an amazing team at Royal Renovations and we are proud to ensure the best disaster restoration services in St. Cloud, MN. When tragedy strikes, we’re here to fix your home. Give us a call at 320-743-3440.

 

Winter Water Damage

You may be happy about winter because you can indulge in a slew of your favorite activities, like ice fishing, snowboarding, and cross-country skiing. You might not be so happy about the frigid temperatures though. We’re talking about the ones so cold that you can walk outside and get frostbite in just minutes. Your pipes won’t be too happy about the dropping temperatures, either.

 

When temperatures drop, it increases the chance for water pipes to freeze. When pipes freeze, the increase in pressure can cause the pipes to burst. Think about the time you left a can of pop in the freezer or your car for too long. It probably exploded, right? Frozen pipes react in a similar fashion, and if the water isn’t shut off right away, major flooding can occur in your home. Keeping pipes above freezing point during the winter is crucial to avoid this problem.

 

Let’s talk prevention!

Keep the heat on, especially if you’ll be out of town for an extended period of time. The heat doesn’t have to be high, but should provide enough warmth to keep pipes warm. Let the faucet drip a small amount of water, as it relieves pressure on your pipes. The pressure in the pipe is what causes them to burst, so the faucet doesn’t need to be gushing water, but both the warm and cold taps should be open slightly. Open the cabinets that house pipes, as well as interior doors. The heat from your home will spread to your pipes and warm them, too.

 

If you have a bit more time, you’ll want to take further steps to prevent your pipes from freezing. Seal any spots where leaks may be occurring, such as cracks and gaps. Caulk or spray foam insulation can take care of this problem on both interior and exterior walls or floors. You can try applying heating tape to pipes, too. It acts like an electric blanket. As mentioned before, pipes should be properly insulated. In areas where pipes are exposed (think basements or attics), you can insulate them with sleeves of insulation. If pipes in walls, floors, or ceilings are in need of insulation, you may need to call in the experts. Even extra insulation in walls and ceilings can help.

 

If your pipes do happen to burst, the experts at Royal Renovations can help with water damage, including water extraction, odor control, carpet cleaning, and mold remediation. Give us a call at 320-743-3440 to find out how we can help!

 

Primary Classifications of Water Damage

Just like there are many causes of water damage—a flooded basement or the result of putting out a fire—there are specific water categories and classes. Knowing the source of the damage and when it occurred will help the experts determine what steps need to happen to make sure damage is cleaned up properly, leaving you with fully restored, good-as-new items.

 

The water damage restoration process is highly regulated. All restoration companies should be following a specific standard to ensure the property is effectively and safely restored, and workers are safe during the restoration process. ANSI/IICRC S500 provides a specific set of practical standards for water damage restoration. It doesn’t teach procedures but provides the foundation for basic principles of proper restoration practices. Water damage is classified by how dirty the water is and the level of difficulty in removing it. There are 3 categories and 4 primary classifications of water damage.

 

Category 1: Water damage is caused by clean, sanitary water that does not pose substantial harm if occupants are exposed to it. This could be water that overflowed while running a bath, for example. Once the water comes into contact with other surfaces (already dirty flooring), it may no longer be sanitary. Water is extracted, and extra moisture is removed with air movers and dehumidifiers.

 

Category 2: Water is sometimes called gray water. The water is contaminated by bacteria, mold, and/or chemicals, so it poses a health risk if exposed to it. Examples of Category 2 water damage is dirty water from washing machines or dishwashers, and leaks from water beds or aquariums. Carpet is usually removed and replaced or restored, as it is the perfect breeding ground for mold and bacteria if not treated properly. The carpet should be treated within 2 days, or it can lead to a Category 3 situation.

 

Category 3: Water damage is often called black water because it contains disease-causing agents. It is unsanitary and contains toxins. Category 3 water damage usually happens when overflow is caused by a sewer backup or rising flood waters. Rising flood waters may contain substances such as animal feces, fertilizers, and decaying debris. In the case of Category 3 water damage, carpet and anything else damaged (like sheetrock) should be thrown away. Chemicals should be applied to kill any remaining bacteria.

 

Water damage is further classified into how large of an area it affects.

 

Class 1: A minimal amount of water damage has occurred, and water has only overflowed onto materials/flooring of low porosity.

 

Class 2: A significant amount of water has overflowed and the materials it has affected are classified as medium to high porosity.

 

Class 3: A large amount of water has been absorbed by materials of high porosity.

 

Class 4: Water has overflowed into a building and is trapped. In Class 4 situations, the restoration process is especially difficult and expensive because the areas are highly porous and difficult to reach.

 

Expert restoration technicians will assess the category and class of water damage before deciding the appropriate measure to get your property back to safe conditions.

 

 

Your Rug Isn’t Ruined—Grab the Elbow Grease!

Rugs are expensive! Whether it’s a beautiful hand-woven rug from a small business in town or a rug you shipped from China while on vacation because you just had to have it, you don’t want to throw it away and buy a new one in the face of a damaging disaster. You want to get your old one cleaned to make it look and feel new again! But don’t try to restore the rug on your own. You may end up doing more damage than good. The staff at Royal Renovations are happy to serve as your carpet and rug cleaning experts and consultants.

 

Does your rug have damage by fire, water, or mold? Royal Renovations can handle it! They take care of the process from start to finish, so you don’t have to worry about sending it to several different businesses. The size of the rug doesn’t matter, either. From area rugs to a rug that sits under your bed, your flooring will be restored to as good as new after your disaster. Royal Renovations works with residential clients and commercial properties, so it doesn’t matter if your rug at home or work needs a little love—they’ve got you covered. Depending on the extent of the damage, sometimes cleaning can be done in your home or office.

 

The first step is to assess damage in a pre-cleaning inspection and decide what restoration methods to employ. Experts will take a look at the construction of the rug and fringe (including coloring and design), point out any permanent stains, and address new damage and concerns (such as burns, odor, sunlight damage, rips/holes, wear, yellowing, and pet urine damage). Your rug will be cleaned with a commercial vacuum cleaner and pre-spot treated. Would you believe that one rug can hold pounds of soil without even looking dirty? Then, pre-conditioning products are applied, and the rug is pre-groomed. The products are rinsed away during a surface cleaning or full immersion wash depending on the extent of the damage. No residue or extra moisture is left behind. Any spots that remain after this process will be spot treated. Rugs then usually receive fabric protection before they are dried. The rug and fringe are groomed again before a post-cleaning inspection to ensure your rug looks restored to its pre-disaster condition—or better! If rugs were cleaned offsite, they are rolled, wrapped, and secured to protect them from new damage.

 

Quality control is crucial, and Royal Renovations will treat your home, business, or personal belongings with the utmost care, ensuring your rugs are restored to pre-loss condition.

 

 

Where’s My Stuff? Keeping Track of Items During Content Restoration

Business property or personal property damage due to fire damage, water damage, sewer and drain backup, storm damage, or mold damage can be devastating, but forget throwing your items away! Content restoration with the experts at Royal Renovations will bring your items back to life. But where do your items go when they’re being restored? Do you have access to them?

 

Content restoration refers to the services to manage personal or business property damaged by a disaster. Royal Renovations has a variety of content restoration techniques to renew your items back to their original state. If items cannot be cleaned onsite, a full pack-out will be organized using content tracking software. The items will be brought to the climate-controlled secure facility at Royal Renovations where damaged items will undergo various content recovery techniques. Once items are restored, they will be stored in a warehouse until they are ready to be safely moved back to your home or business. In the meantime, you will have access to your items.

 

Our inventory systems are used to manage your contents/belongings. You’ll be able to view your contents, request items, and complete the non-salvage part of your claim. Your inventory is captured and digitized the moment it’s created, so tracking the location and status of items is instantaneous. A visible and continuously updated chain of custody is ensured throughout the process. Access to our inventory systems is made easy online or through a mobile application for your phone.

 

Our integrated programs allow policyholders, contractors, and claims professionals the ability to coordinate work, update scheduling preferences, and connect through various collaboration tools. The experts at Royal Renovations will be able to locate and return items efficiently while you can personally look up and monitor the status of your belongings. Whether it’s your child’s favorite stuffed animal or a family computer full of important documents, your items may be in our care, but you’ll be able to keep a watchful eye on them. You’ll also be able to manage your claims.

 

For more information on the contents restoration process, call Royal Renovations at 320-743-3440.

 

You Can’t Fight Fire with Fire!— How to Restore Your Home’s Contents After They’ve Burned

A home fire can be incredibly devastating to a family. Not only are there possible physical injuries involved, the emotional distress can be crushing. The home is a place of safety and comfort, but a fire can take away that sense of security, especially if the fire damages the home and items inside. Fortunately, the experts at Royal Renovations specialize in fire damage content restoration. Not all hope is lost.

 

Royal Renovations understands how scary and dangerous a fire can be for everyone involved, so they take special care in handling your situation in a caring and compassionate manner. Fires range in size from minor—such as a small electrical fire or cooking fire—to a large fire. Whether smoke or fire damage is minimal or the whole house has been touched and building materials and contents have been burned, Royal Renovations is able to handle every aspect of restoration. Crews are available for 24/7 emergency service.

 

You might want to start the clean-up process immediately, but it’s important to avoid further damage. Do not try to wipe down or wash fire remnants from damaged areas, as this could negatively impact the fire damage recovery process. You can open the windows in the affected areas if the weather permits. Don’t use appliances until they’re inspected and cleaned. Make sure you refrain from throwing anything away before documenting the damage with photos.

The experts at Royal Renovations are trained in the fire damage remediation process, including odor control, water extraction, structural drying, and complete construction. Upon arriving at the scene, they will assess the damage and control any lingering hazards to prevent any worsening damage to your home. For instance, if a hole burned through your roof and rain is in the forecast, they will address the issue with tarp and sealing services. Then, they will begin the cleanup process by cleaning away smoke, dust, and soot. Your surfaces will no longer look dark, stained, or charred. Water damage restoration will also take place during this stage. Any standing water will be removed, and areas will be dried and sanitized. Lingering odors will be removed, as well as any items that are too badly burned to be restored. Furniture that can be repaired will be fixed or reinstalled, carpets will be installed, and walls will be repainted or wallpapered. Your property will be left looking good as new—and sometimes, even better due to renovation efforts.

 

There’s no need to consider all your items damaged and gone or start making immediate plans to rebuild and refurnish. Royal Renovations can take care of fire damage and any potential water damage. We hope you never have to deal with the scary experience of a fire in your home, but if you do, Royal Renovations will help you get your home and life back to normal.

 

Don’t Chalk it up as Garbage, Restore Your Business’ Contents After a Disaster

 

Business property damage due to a natural disaster can be a devastating blow to your company. Fire damage, water damage, sewer and drain backup, storm damage, mold damage—the professionals at Royal Renovations can handle it all. We know how important your business’ items are to you. Don’t throw them away! Call Royal Renovations to have your contents restored to its pre-damage condition.

 

So what is content restoration? Simply stated, it refers to the process of recovering items after they are damaged during a disaster. Don’t junk your items just yet; they can still be salvaged! Royal Renovations has a variety of content restoration techniques to renew your items back to their original state. For example, soot and smoke odor can be removed from numerous different objects, such as textiles, documents, and electronics. If specific items need to be cleaned quickly, they can be put on a rush order and restored within 48 hours or less. During the content restoration process, you will have access to your belongings.

 

The process of property inventorying items after damage from a disaster is a vital part in content restoration. Royal Renovations takes care of your contents with highly organized packouts using content tracking software, complete with photo inventory and a detailed itemization of non-salvageable objects. Damaged items will be transported to Royal Renovations’ climate controlled facility. The items will be safely and securely stored (and easily accessed by you if needed) in the interim while structural damage is being fixed. Once restoration of the business is complete, the items will be moved back in. If the damage is minor enough, property can be cleaned on-site.

 

Royal Renovations also offers:

 

  • 24/7 Claims Management
  • Odor Control
  • Content Processing
  • Specialty Item Cleaning
  • Non-salvageable Inventory

 

If disaster strikes, count on Royal Renovations to fix your business.