What Is Involved in a Complete Structural Dry-out?

floor drying systems

Throughout the nation, flooding is the most costly and destructive type of disaster. In the Seattle area, we are vulnerable to three different natural flooding hazards: coastal flooding, flooding from creeks and rivers and urban flooding that overwhelms the city’s drainage system. Individual houses can also fall victim from flooding due to broken pipes, leaking washing machines, broken water heaters and other issues. In severe cases, a complete structural dry-out is required to prevent permanent damage.

Why basic cleanup is not always enough.

Soft surfaces like carpet can absorb water almost on contact. Within hours, it can seep into and behind drywall. Water can fall down into and beneath subfloors. If flooding lasts several days, it can even soak into less porous materials such as cement.

How is a complete structural dry-out performed?

This is a multistep process that may take a number of days to be complete. First, water is extracted. Specialty wall and floor drying systems are used to ensure that all water is removed from behind and beneath surfaces.

In some cases, portions of baseboard and drywall will need to be removed. This is necessary to completely remove moisture from behind walls. If the water is allowed to remain, it can gradually break down the building materials, leading to a loss of structural integrity. Water in these closed-off areas are also the perfect breeding ground for mold and bacteria. When these get into your house, they can lead to serious issues with air quality.

Specialty drying mats are used with the Injectidry system to remove all water from beneath floors. The system pulls air out using a suction technique known as negative air.

Laminar air movers ensure that water does not escape into the air. They dry areas in the house and behind the walls to ensure that all water is completely removed

By using a combination of extraction, evaporation and dehumidifying equipment and methods, we can ensure that all water has been removed from the structure. This can prevent cupping in floors, degradation of drywall and growth of harmful organisms.

If you have severe flooding in your home, do not try to go it alone. There is a wide array of equipment and knowledge that the average homeowner just does not have access to. By trusting your complete structural dry-out to our trained professionals, you can ensure that the job is done completely and done right. We are available to offer free assessments twenty-four hours a day. If your home is flooded, the sooner you call, the sooner you will be on your way to removing all water and preventing long term damage. Call today.

Is Your Water Heater a Ticking Time Bomb?

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Often, we do not think much about our major appliances before they cause us trouble. Our water heaters stay hidden in closets or basements, faithfully heating water — until the day they don’t. Leaking water heaters are one of the major causes to costly flood damage in the home. Is yours a risk? Read on to learn the signs that your water heater may be a danger.

The tank is old.

Water heaters are designed to last for many years, but they do eventually wear out. A water heater will typically last between six to eight years for gas models and eight to ten years for electric. If your water heater is older than that, it may be time to start budgeting for a new one. Not sure how old your tank is? You can decode its age from the serial number. The letter at the front corresponds with the month of the year. So, if that number is D, your water heater was made in April, the fourth month. The next two numbers are the year; so, D08 would indicate a water heater made in April, 2008.

You see visible rust.

Older tanks can have rust and corrosion that start to threaten their integrity. If you can see rust or corrosion, changes are good that it is going through the tank. This can cause flooding throughout your house that may require the services of a water removal company.

The drain valve is faulty.

The drain valve is located by the bottom of your water heater. It looks a lot like a hose spigot. Often, this is a part that can become damaged and wear out over time. If the area looks corroded or you see a small puddle near the bottom of your water heater, the drain valve may be to blame. It is important to get this part replaced by a plumber as soon as possible to avoid water damage and flooding.

You hear banging or popping sounds.

Mineral deposits can build up inside your water heater. When this happens, it can cause the drain valve to become clogged or can contribute to metal fatigue. Over time, both can make it more likely that your water heater will leak.

The water heater connections look worn.

If you see leaking or ruse at the connections, this is a sure sing that corrosion is leading to water heater failure. When the connections fail, leaks become inevitable.

Premier Emergency Water Removal has worked for years to become the most experienced and skilled water removal experts in the Seattle area. We are available 24 hours a day to handle flooding in your home, whether it happens day or night. Should you experience water leaks despite your efforts to prevent them, we can be there as soon as possible to clean up the spill and keep moisture from damaging your Seattle home.

Preventing Water Damage When You Are Away from Home

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The winter season often means holiday visits to friends and family. But, while you are gone, it is all to easy for things to go awry. Our winter tips will help prevent water damage in your home while you are enjoying some time away.

Check Water Supply Lines

The plastic or rubber hoses that go to your dishwasher, your washing machine, the icemaker in your refrigerator and other appliances should be in good shape, especially if you are getting ready to leave. Replace any that are cracked, bulging or that show any signs of corrosion. By ensuring that the lines are sound, you cut the chances of them breaking while you are away.

Consider Shutting Off Your Water at the Main Valve

Your main should be somewhere in your yard, your basement or near the road. Turning off the water here can prevent leaks while you are away by keeping water out of the pipes.

If you have never turned off the main water valve at your home before, test it before you go. After shutting off the valve, turn on a faucet in the house. The water should stop once the pipe is empty.

If you have someone coming over to water plants or to feed pets, you can also shut off the supply just at specific valves. The ones that feed appliances like your dishwasher and washing machine, as well as the one for your toilet, are good ones to stop to cut your chance of leaks.

Test Your Sump Pump

If you have a basement, ensure that the sump pump is working before you go. Pour a bucket of water down into the pump to raise the water level. Your pump should turn on to eject the excess water immediately. If it does not work, double check to see that it is plugged in. You should also check that the outlet pipe is free of clogs and is not frozen over. If the pump still is not working, consider having someone out to service it before you go.

Clean Your Gutters

When the gutters are clogged with fall leaves, they cannot do their job and move water away from your roof and house. When water pools in the gutters, it increases your chances of water getting into the home to cause damage.

Have a friend periodically check in.

Even if you don’t have pets or house plants, having someone take a look at your house every few days is beneficial. Someone who comes in to take in the mail and look around can catch a problem before it becomes a big one.

If, in spite of your preparations, you suffer water damage while you are gone, it is important to get it handled quickly. The longer water sits, the more damage it can cause. If you have flooding in your home, call us to get the water damage cleaning service Seattle trusts. We are available year round to ensure your home stays safe and dry.

Preventing Sewage Back-up During a Flood

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Even in the winter, the Seattle area can be subject to heavy rains. Flooding is the most common natural disaster to befall homeowners and costs the country millions of dollars every year. When flooding occur, the best way to prevent backup is to limit how much you use your sewage system. These tips can help you avoid adding extra pressure when the system is already overly stressed:

Prevention in the Kitchen

Switch to disposable plates, cups and cutlery until the danger is over. If you do use regular plates and silverware, hand wash them using as little water as possible. The dishwasher puts too much pressure on the system.

Be creative with meals and pick those that leave you with as few dirty dishes as possible. Use canned fruits and vegetables instead of fresh, for instance.

If you drink tap water, do not run the faucet to cool it. Instead, cool a pitcher of water in the refrigerator or use ice cubes.

Prevention in the Bathrooms

Make showers short. After using a couple of minutes to wet down, turn off the water while you soap up. Then, just use as much water as needed to rinse off.

Buy wet towlettes to use for cleaning up while flood conditions are in effect. Reserve handwashing at the sink for when you hands are really dirty or you are getting ready to prepare food.

Do not flush the toilet any more than necessary. The fewer flushes, the less chance of sewage back up.

Prevention in the Rest of the Home

Avoid doing laundry at home while the threat of a sewage back up exists. Instead, hit a nearby laundromat in an unaffected area. Look over clothes to decide which ones need to be washed and which are good for another wear.

Check your home for leaking faucets and pipes. Draining water, such as a running toilet, just puts more stress on the system.

Avoid discharging water into drains in your floor. It will cause more strain on the sewage system.

Avoid the use of water softeners during flood situations where there is a risk of a sewage back up.

Keep up with weather reports and notifications from the city while the threat of floods and sewage back up exists. The city can let you know when floodwaters recede and it is safe to use water normally in your home again.

If a sewage back up does occur, you will need to act quickly to protect your home. Do not try to deal with the flooding yourself, as sewage contains dangerous pathogens. Get in touch with us for the sewage clean up Seattle homeowners trust. We are available to help you with clean up in an emergency and to get you back to 100 percent.

Why You Should Leave Sewage Cleanup to the Professionals

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It’s one of those situations that no homeowner wants to deal with. But, should you have sewage fro a backed up septic tank, a clogged sewer line or a backup into your basement after a storm, it is vital to get professional help as quickly as possible. By no means should you try to do the job yourself. A few of the reasons:

1. Sewage Clean Up Pros Have the Right Equipment.

There is no reason to spend your day working with a wet-dry vacuum, shovels and towels when business provide the sewage clean up Seattle homeowners need. We come with professional grade pumps, dehumidifiers, air scrubbers and other equipment to ensure that the job is done thoroughly.

2. Sewage Can Be Dangerous.

Sewage is considered black water, the most serious form of flooding that can invade your home. It can harbor bacteria, parasites and other hazards. Professional sewage cleanup crews have the protective gear to avoid the dangers.

3. Your Home Insurance Probably Covers Professional Clean Up.

There is no reason to take on clean up yourself when your homeowner’s policy most likely will cover a thorough, professional job. We have experience working with most insurers and can help with documentation to ensure that the work is covered.

4. A Professional Can Get it Done More Quickly than You Can.

We respond to emergency situations in under 90 minutes, to get you back to normal as quickly as possible. That’s probably less time than you would spend at the hardware store picking up the equipment you would need to do the job yourself.

5. We Guarantee Our Results.

When someone who does not have experience dealing with flooding and sewage clean up does the job, there is a chance that things will go wrong. Moisture can hide away behind drywall and under floors. Over time, this can lead to mold or water damage to materials. We have years of experience and stand behind our work.

If you have a sewage backup in your basement or in your home, there is no time to wait. Every minute counts. The sooner the issue is handled, the less damage you will have to endure. We are available 7 days a week, 365 days a year. Get in touch right away for a free assessment and to get on your way back to your pre-flood condition.

What to Do if a Pipe Bursts in Your Home

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Burst pipes can be a nightmare for homeowners. They can sometimes go undetected until puddles begin to form and damp areas are found. If you have a burst pipe in your home, it’s important to act quickly to minimize the damage.

What Causes Burst Pipes?

Older houses in the Seattle area are most prone to burst pipes, but it can happen anywhere. While Seattle’s winters are mild, there are times when the temperatures dip very low, increasing the chances of water freezing in a pipe and the pipe bursting. Corrosion on old pipes can weaken them, leading them to break on their own without warning. Local construction can cause soil to shift, leading to increased weight and pressure on the pipe. Tree roots are probably the most common local cause; when a root wraps around a weak point, it can squeeze until the pipe bursts.

What to Do When One is Discovered

Burbling or whistling sounds when you run the water or clanking down below the house can be the first signs that a pipe is broken. But often, the first notice you have will be an unpleasant odor, rings on the ceiling, damp drywall or puddles appearing anywhere in your home, especially beneath sinks or on your floors.

If leaking is persistent, go to the main water valve and shut it off immediately. If you do not know where your water valve is located, it’s better to learn sooner than later. In many cases, it will be found out by the street under a metal lid.

Electricity to the area of your home that is affected should also be shut off. Flooding can cause issues with the wiring or can even lead to electric shock if you are exposed to the water.

Remove area rugs, soft furniture and other possessions from the affected area, especially if the flooding is deep. Depending on where the leak in your plumbing system is, you may need to discard damaged items.

Call a plumber right away to get the burst pipe dealt with. If your burst pipe occurs during one of Seattle’s rare freezes, expect to wait; many people may be dealing with the same issue and the local plumbers may be backed up.

If your walls or ceiling are showing signs of water damage, it is important to get in touch with professional water damage cleanup professionals. We can come out and thoroughly remove all water. Without help, moisture can remain unseen. Over time, this can cause damage to housing materials or lead to mold or bacteria hidden beneath floors or behind your walls.

Speed is important when dealing with flooding in your home. The sooner you act, the less damage you will experience. We provide the water damage cleanup Seattle depends on. Have a leak in your home? Call now for a free assessment.

Lunch and Learn – Classes at Your Location

An insurance agent’s studies don’t end when you get your license. It’s necessary to periodically refresh your knowledge and to keep up with current laws by taking continuing education classes. In Washington, each resident individual producer dealing with life, property, disability, casualty or personal lines is required to complete 24 credit hours of continuing education, including three hours of ethics credits.

We understand how busy you and your staff are. You don’t have time to travel to off-site classes to keep in compliance. That is why we at Premier Emergency Water Removal come to you!

No need to worry about commuting time, gas, parking or any other hassles. We offer Lunch and Learn sessions where everyone gets the chance to take the classes they need in a convenient and familiar environment.

Our Lunch and Learn sessions allow you and your staff to get your CE credits conveniently on-site at your office. This allows you to ensure that all personnel in your office are up to date without having to take time out of their busy days to go to classes on their own. No chasing down employees to ensure that they get the credits that they need to stay licensed and up to date. These classes are a fun and convenient way to get all of your CE credits handled.

We are an approved course provider for a range of CE courses. When you take a class with us, we issue a certificate of completion and report the credits to the Insurance Commissioners office. All you have to do is show up!

We offer a choice of lunch specials from local eateries, with dishes to suit every taste. Get in touch and we will let you know what is available and design a luncheon that will make everyone in the office happy. 

The classes that we offer are both entertaining and educational. You will get the knowledge you need about the area’s laws while getting a break from day to day work. All without having to leave the office and head to an off-site location. Save time and effort while ensuring that everyone is compliant.

Interested in booking a Lunch and Learn session at your office? Premier offers the continuing education classes Seattle agents need. We can put on a single class or a multi-day CE credit event. Get in touch and we’ll schedule classes and a lunch that will fit your agents’ needs.

How Bad Is My Water Damage?

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When you have flooding in your home, it is natural to be concerned. Depending on the type of water, how much of it and other factors, the sort of water damage that is possible can vary greatly. When you call us for the water extraction Seattle trusts, we can assess the severity of your flooding and create a plan for clean up and restoration.

Categories of Flooding

Water incursions are broken into three general categories, depending on the liquid that is involved in the flooding. These categories are:

Fresh Water – Category 1

A Category 1 flood involves clean water from a sanitary source. This can include drinking fountains, faucets, the tank behind your toilet and other clean water. However, water does not stay fresh long. If it is left to sit, it can degrade into one of the more severe categories.

Grey Water – Category 2

This is water that has some contaminants. It may make people ill or uncomfortable if it is ingested. This sort of water may contain food particles and other contaminants. Examples of Category 2 waters include the water from a dishwasher or clothes washes, or the water from an overflowing sink drain. It can also include toilet water that is contaminated with urine but is not contaminated with feces.

Black Water – Category 3

This is the most dangerous category of flood water and should always be handled by trained professionals. Category 3 flooding is water that can be severely contaminated. It includes toilet water with feces, sewage backup, overflowing river water and other contaminated sources. Water that has been standing and has begun to support bacterial life is also considered Category 3 black water.

Classes of Destruction

Not all destruction and clean up is equal.

Class 1

This is the easiest sort of water destruction to deal with. It will typically only involve part of a room. The materials there will not be ones easily soaked. For instance, there will be no soft upholstery or carpet.

Class 2

In a Class 2 situation, you will have an entire room affected, with moisture wicking a foot or more up the walls. Carpet, upholstery, curtains and other materials with high absorption are involved.

Class 3

Liquid in a Class 3 situation may have seeped into the room from overhead. Ceilings, walls, carpets, subfloors and insulation are involved.

Class 4

In this situation, there is enough liquid which has sat long enough that surfaces like hardwood, stone and cement are involved. Specialty drying is required.

If you have flooding of any sort in your home, it is imperative to handle it quickly. The sooner you call us for water extraction and clean up, the sooner your home will be back to its normal state. Get in touch day or night for your water clean up needs