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Tuesday, January 15, 2013

What about water and pipes in freezing temperatures?❄

Cold comes each winter and with it, frozen pipes! This leaves some unanswered questions: What can I do to prevent it? What do I do if I discover a frozen pipe? What if my pipe bursts?

Say it how ever you want to, but prevention is the best remedy. Many things can be done to prevent freeze breaks. If you have a crawl space for example, make sure vents are closed. Inspect the pipes to make sure the insulation is in its proper place protecting pipes from cold temps. If there are shut offs for hose bibs, make sure you turn them off inside.
If your home has a basement make sure all weather proofing has been done properly.

In all cases know where your water shut off is for water coming into your home. I suggest everyone in the home knows where the shutoff is and how to use it.

What if you find a frozen pipe? Hopefully it has not ruptured. If not, you are still in good shape. Go to the faucet or outlet where the pipe drains and open it slowly to allow water to trickle out. Add low levels of heat to slowly thaw the line. As the low levels of heat come into contact with the frozen pipe, the water will drain. Follow up by protecting the pipe from cold, make any repairs to the structure that allowed cold air in there. Have a plumber inspect.

What if the pipe already burst? Get the water turned off immediately. Protect any belongings by getting as much off the floor as you can. Ultimately You are going to need help.
Call Damage Control LLC as soon as you can at 406-274-4168. Time is important when it comes to preventing further damages to your home.

Under water? We have it under control!

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Secondary Damage vs. Primary Damage

The 2 most common ways to describe damage that has occurred during a water damage incident are Primary damage and Secondary damage.  These types of damage can come at any time of year.  Lets examine the two words and define them.

1.  Primary Damage;  a phrase that is used to describe the result after moisture establishing contact with material that permanently compromise the materials.  These materials are common to indoor environments, such as wood, drywall, carpet, personal contents, fabric, etc.

2.  Secondary Damage; a phrase used to describe the negative affects on materials from prolonged exposure to moisture in an indoor environment.   Secondary damage is most likely to occur in hygroscopic materials when the humidity nears 60% and is maintained for any period of time.  Some examples of hygroscopic material include but are not limited to the following; wood, natural fibers, yarns, fabric, paper, drywall, ceiling tiles, cellulosic insulation, etc.  Some building materials will be permanently distorted or compromised due to the negative effects of secondary damage, resulting in a greatly expanding scope of damage and a negative impact on the pocket book of the one who is stuck paying the bill.  Not only does this include physical distortion of building materials, but add the the microbial growth potential to the equation.

As stated in previous posts, response time is critical.  Along with speed is the need to be accurate.  We equip ourselves with the latest technological advanced in moisture detection equipment so as to see it all.  We simply can not miss a wet spot, that is crucial to a quick dry, a healthy dry.

We constantly find mold growth in buildings that were not properly dried following a water intrusion.  The spring time subjects us to heat influxes between the day and night.  Also we are faced with many different potential water damage sources.  Be it ground water, rain, snow, hail, river, etc.  water wants into your dry structure at all costs.  If you are faced with this situation, act now.

If you suspect that you are the victim of water damage, Call Damage Control today @ 406-274-4168 for an immediate response...  In this case speed kills, kills bacteria and spores that is..

Thursday, April 19, 2012

No obligation consultation

Yes, I typed it properly.  No obligation consultation..!!  Free estimate?  Yes..!

Why in this economy with gas prices sky rocketing with no end in sight would we come to your location and look at your water damage or mold issue for free?  Please allow me to explain.

It is no secret that in a service related business, the focus should be on the home owner.  Industries are tailored to teaching and mastering the craft of customer service.  It is essential that we establish a good relationships before we begin a job.  By meeting the home owner or decision maker gives us the opportunity to do so.  It is better for all involved if the relationship of owner and service company is established before one tool is brought into the home.

By coming to your location and performing an inspection we can accurately determine the proper course of action needed to restore your property to its clean, pre water damage condition.  With in a few minutes it will be evident of the service professional is going to meet your needs or if you should move on to another company.  That should be done with out you spending a penny.

By giving you a free, no obligation estimate, we get to showcase our talents to you.  I feel that it is my opportunity to perform my art, my skill, my craft.  If you feel comfortable by what we say, than we can move forward with the next phase of restoring your home or building, the contract...

The last point I want to make regarding coming to give you a free estimate is simple.  We are basically applying for a job.  We want you to know what we are capable of and how we can help your property be clean and beautiful once again.  Have you ever charged an employer to apply for a job?

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

4 Steps to consider in the event of a Water Damage Emergency

THE 4 RULES when it comes to Water Damage in buildings:

1          THINK SAFETY.  You should always be cautious of water around electrical circuitry, also be careful that you do not slip or fall as some surfaces gain the ability to become very slippery.  Watch water around electrical outlets, take precautions to avoid electricity related accidents.  In some cases shut the breakers off in the wet areas.

2           TURN OFF SOURCE OF WATER.   With the aid of a professional plumber, we can discover and repair the source of the water leak or leaks if that is applicapable.  This step is critical as to make sure the damage is mitigated properly.

3           PROTECT / REMOVE   MANAGEABLE FURNITURE.  In the event you have your contents or personal belongings come into contact with moisture, it is very important that the items are moved to a safe dry area in order to prevent further damage to such items as textiles, and stain grade wood products.

4           CALL US IMMEDIATELY AT 406-274-4168.  The safe and proper restoration of your property depends upon fast action and choosing a dependable and experienced restoration firm.    In just a few moments after water intrusion moisture sensitive surfaces will swell and lose shape. Paper goods may peel and curl and transferable furniture stains, which are usually permanent, will appear on the carpeting.
In only a few hours drywall will soften and warp. Wooden furniture can become discolored and swollen leaving it permanently damaged. Carpeting can separate from its backing (called delamination) resulting in a total loss.
In just 24 hours fungi and bacteria may begin to grow and rapidly flourish. Foul and unpleasant odors will usually begin to permeate the entire building structure. Hardwood floors may become completely ruined due to warping.

So if you experience a flood or water damage of ANY size, call Damage Control LLC. We will quickly return your life and home or business back to pre-loss condition. Guaranteed.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

How do you clean the air you breathe?

3 Myths Of Air Purification


MYTH: HEPA Filters Are Adequate Protection

Air Purifier manufacturers often make their claims for HEPA filtration out of context. They do not eliminate the majority of potentially lethal contaminants. HEPA filters remove a percentage of particulates only, in fact, it’s what the “P” in HEPA stands for! In truth however, it is other serious contaminants that cause the majority of serious respiratory problems.
In addition, many dangerous viruses are smaller than 0.1 microns, and can pass through typical HEPA filter systems. Additionally, gases are not considered “particulates” because their size is measured in angstroms (1/1000th of a micron), and most hydrocarbons are 4 to 8 angstroms in size. These are potentially lethal contaminants that a HEPA filter cannot remove.
You can easily see that the many HEPA-based air purifiers on the market are wholly inadequate to protect the human body from many dangerous and even potentially lethal contaminants. They are suitable to provide allergy relief and clean the air of some particulate, but true protection requires more.
The BioSmart® SA-700 Air purification system with its proprietary BioSmart® hydrophobic activated carbon filter and ultraviolet emitter can help protect you from all of these airborne threats.

MYTH: All Charcoal Filters Are Equal

Under perfect conditions (0% Humidity), natural carbon can absorb some types of hydrocarbons when used in air purification systems. Unfortunately, even though charcoal can absorb hydrocarbons, such as benzene found in cigarette smoke, it is more likely to absorb water from the air first!
Consider a one-pound carbon filter in an average home, subjected to the airflow rate of a typical air purifier system. Normally, in less than 72 hours, 90% of the effectiveness of the carbon filter has been nullified by the absorption of water!
An effective filter must be hydrophobic to avoid this absorption of water and the resulting loss of capacity. This requires special treatment not normally found in consumer air purification systems.
In addition, the filter must contain many more reactive ingredients than just charcoal in order to be effective in reducing levels of airborne volatile compounds.
Only the BioSmart® SA-700 air purifier has the BioSmart® Hydrophobic Activated Carbon filtration cartridge that can reliably achieve true eradication of hydrocarbons and other harmful pollutants.

MYTH: UV Light Purifies The Air

The word “purify” can be misleading, and it is often used loosely in the air purification industry. UV light kills harmful organisms, but it does not remove them from the air. Rendering potentially infectious organisms harmless is an important step in the purification process, but it is only part of a properly designed air purifier system's job.
Ultraviolet light is used extensively in hospitals in combination with other systems, such as gas filters. These systems are expensive and carefully engineered to accomplish a specific task. A typical consumer unit that claims to have ultraviolet cannot automatically be assumed to reliably or credibly match this performance level.
Not all ultraviolet is equal! The nanometre wavelength of an ultraviolet emitter can have a very wide range, and an improper frequency creates harmful ozone by disassociating electrons from oxygen molecules in the air.
Proper use of ultraviolet light in the air requires a higher frequency than the standard 186 nanometers, and the unit must retain that frequency in order to eliminate the possibility of the formation of ozone.
Additionally, the unit must expose the air to the proper ultraviolet frequency for a required minimum duration at a minimum distance from the source of the ultraviolet emission.
Unless all these factors have been addressed, such as they are in the design of the BioSmart® SA-700 Air Purifier, the ultraviolet will not effectively accomplish its objective.
Did you know that we can help you with equipment at an affordable price for you to own.  Contact us for more info.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Do you really need to put all that equipment in my house to dry it?

One of the most frequent questions asked, or thought about during water damage restoration work is; do you really need to bring all that equipment in my house?"

What is the process that goes into determining if we have adequate amount, or too much equipment.  There are formulas we follow, calculations we calculate, and measurements to measure.  You should never be given an answer along the lines of "because that is how much we have on the truck", or "because we always use this much equipment."  Be suspect if you do not see the technicians working hard to figure the actual need of equipment.  There are tools, and meters, and gauges available to professionals to determine the equipment requirements for each job.  Just as two people are not the same, each water damage we go into has its own wants and needs.

How do we do it.  How does Damage Control determine the equipment load needed to dry each job to a pre-loss condition, or back to dry like it never happened conditioned.

One of my favorite formulas used to calculate the dehumidification requirements in a water damaged building is fun.
Step 1.  Simply figure how much air space is in the room or building and figure how much moisture can be put into that airspace.  Cubic feet is calculated Length x Width x Height.
Step 2.  Determine the class of water loss, classes1-4.  This is in reference to the type of water loss, location of water source, how much water is effecting the structure, and the type of building materials affected.
class 1.  water losses that affect only a part of the room, with a minimum amount of moisture
class 2.  water losses that affect the entire room of carpeting with water wicking up the walls to 24".
class 3.  water came from overhead.  Walls, ceilings, insulation, carpet and padding, virtually the entire area is saturated.
class 4.  These involve materials with low permeance.  Hardwoods, brick, plaster, concrete, stone, etc..
Step 3.  Determine the type of dehumidifiers being used and its capacity of water removal.  Each machine has different capacities and abilities.  We are looking at the number of pints of water removal per day here.  Once we have all the info needed we can then determine the equipment needs for dehumidification in that area.
Example: 1500 sf. class 2 water loss @ 12,000 cf. / 50 pints (dehu) = 240 pints of dehumidification needed.
As explained earlier each dehumidifier is different in it capacity to handle a job.  Most of our units process 120 - 130 pints per day.  So on this job in the example above, we would use 2 dehu's on this 1500 sf water loss.

Dehumidifiers are rated at pints per day.  We measure their ability to remove moisture from the air in grains.  To make sure the equipment is working properly, and still needed on that job site, we take readings each time we check on that job.  We keep track of atmosphere conditions and wall readings.  The atmospheric readings are called psychrometric readings.  With these readings we determine grains of moisture per pound of air.  It is this way we keep track of the specific moisture and compare that with the moisture content in the materials we are trying to dry.  Simply put, if the air is dry, the structure will be able to dry.


How do we get that dry air to the wet surface?  Thank goodness there are not confusing scientific formulas for  this piece of equipment.  Each airmover is designed to push airflow.  I call it energy.  Each piece is designed differently, but measured in cfm (cubic feet per minute).  In general, an airmover should be placed with in 12 feet of another to maximize airflow.  If there are obstructions blocking the airflow, equipment can be placed accordingly to have adequate airflow.  If doors are in the way, we remove them.  Airmovers should be placed  at a 45 degree angle to push enough air to the hard to reach areas and increase airflow from the center of the room to allow carpet and padding to dry.
To directly answer the determining factor used in airmover placement; it depends on what is in the room we are drying.  If empty, the room can dry faster..!!

I hope this makes sense, and allows to clear some confusion as to why we do what we do.  The dehumidifiers are easy to calculate on paper.  The airmovers are essential to push dry air, energy, across the wet surfaces.  The 2 pieces of equipment work hand in hand to accomplish one common goal.  That goal is our goal:  Keep the Home Owner happy, and warm and dry.  Dry the structure as rapidly as possible and minimize the damages or need for repairs.

Thanks for taking the time to read.  We are standing by ready to serve, Call today @ 406-274-4168

Friday, September 2, 2011

Fall is on the way... Dare I say?

In the past few days we have witnessed seasonal changes in weather patterns.  Heat, cooling, sun, rain, lightning caused fires, and SNOW!  No it is not exactly the end of the world, it is just Montana.  I am reminded of the old adage, " if you don't like the weather, just wait 5 minutes and it will change."

With Labor Day upon us, that brings many things.  End of summer camping trips, school starting back up, and that brings College Football.  Football season brings excitement in the air.  It starts up in the hot weather and ends in the dead of winter.  There are many things that we need to do to properly winterize and safe guard them from damage that comes along with the sub freezing temperatures.  Here are some suggestions to follow as fall approaches:

- Keep up with leaves falling.  Don't allow them to collect in rain gutters plugging down spouts causing them not to drain properly.  This could open up a whole lot of problems for you when you allow water to collect where it does not belong collecting.  Make sure down spouts are draining 7 to 10 feet away from your foundation.
- Keep sidewalk clear of debris.  When snow and ice develop, they can hide other hazards that could lead to slip and fall injuries.
- Remove garden hosed from spigots or hose bibs.  Even frost free bibs will freeze and break if the hose is not disconnected.
- Drain any sprinkler systems installed in your yard.  A freeze break in your sprinkler line can lead to costly repairs from damage caused by unwanted water intrusion.
- Leave heat on in your building with the cupboards open to allow heat in there if you are planning to travel and be away during the colder weather.

These are just a few suggestions aimed at preparing you for the end of summer weather.  Winter will be here before you know it.  Yes, it was a beautiful summer, and No, I am not trying to rush it out the door.

If you are out at a local High School Football game, maybe I will see you while I am on the sidelines, at a stadium near you.  Enjoy what is left of the good weather.

Never forget that we are standing by to serve in a time of need.
Call immediately with a water concern.