Recent Posts

Moisture in Your Home's Crawl Space: Causes and Solutions

3/19/2018 (Permalink)

If your Affton, MO home includes a crawl space, you may not give it much thought until you find a problem there. A wet crawl space is one troublesome yet common issue, as moisture can damage its interior and the items you might have stored there. Knowing what causes the moisture and how to remedy the problem quickly can prevent further damage to the interior of your home and belongings.

Floods Can Be a Common Cause of Moisture

If your crawl space is on the ground floor and flooding occurs in the area, water might enter and pool where you may not notice it right away. Darkness and moisture create prime conditions for mold growth, and once this growth takes hold within the interior of your home, it can be difficult to treat. If your home is affected by flood waters, you may want to have a storm cleanup and restoration company check your crawl space for water afterward.

Clogged Gutters

When your home has poor drainage, it can result in a wet crawl space because rainwater and thawed snow and ice might flow toward your home, not away from it. Over time, this can cause moisture to seep into your basement. To remedy this, clean your gutters and downspouts and ensure that the outflow is directed away from your home.

Faulty Outdoor Water Fixtures

Leaking hoses and exterior spigots not only waste water, but they can also cause it to drain into your home and affect your crawl space. Even a slow leak can produce enough soil erosion to allow water into your home, and this can result in significant damage to the interior of the crawl space. Check outdoor fixtures and hoses for leaks often, and replace or repair them as needed.

Flooding, poor drainage and other moisture problems can cause a wet crawl space in your Affton, MO home. Being vigilant about preventing and repairing these issues may lower the risk of ongoing mold growth and other damaging consequences of excess dampness in your home. Visit for more information on water damage. 

Is Your Workplace Ready for a Fire? Prep With These Fire Drill Tips

3/14/2018 (Permalink)

When in primary school, most people are taught to stop, drop and roll, and depending on where they were located, some schools even performed full-on fire drills. However, once graduated, most people never perform a fire drill again, which doesn't make sense from a business or a safety standpoint. If you own a business, you have an obligation to keep your employees safe, which you can do by having an emergency plan in place and conducting routine fire drills. If you're not sure how to hold a drill, keep these tips from your Affton, MO department of labor in mind:

- Create a fire safety team.
- Develop scenarios.
- Focus on evacuation techniques.
- Practice, practice, practice!

1. Develop a Safety Team

First and foremost, develop a fire safety team whose job it is to not only conduct regular fire drills but also ensure that everyone makes it out safely and meets at a designated spot during each fire drill. A person should be designated for each department.

2. Devise Real Life Scenarios

While practice makes perfect, the best way to plan for an emergency is to pretend like you're living one. Have certain employees stand at different exits with "exit blocked" signs, forcing other employees to think of alternative exit routes. Because nothing may go according to plan during a fire, the best thing you can do is plan for the unpredictable.

3. Focus on Evacuation

This goes hand in hand with the above point, but it is so important it deserves special attention. The goal of a drill is to ensure that everyone knows how to evacuate the building safely and calmly during the real deal. Provide an evacuation handbook for employees to review, and be sure that it gives special attention to routes for individuals with special needs or handicaps.

4. Practice!

The best thing you can do for your employees' and your own safety is to practice! If you do something enough times, it will become second nature, which is what you want in an emergency.

Fire safety isn't just for primary school. Protect your employees, and use the above fire safety drills in your business.
Visit for more information on fire damage. 

3 Signs of a Silent Mold Infestation

2/21/2018 (Permalink)

Mold is a silent infestation that can fester and grow to outstanding proportions without you even realizing that your Affton, MO building is infected. However, because of the damaging effects that mold can have on your building, it’s important that you are able to catch mold growth early on and stop it in its tracks. While the only way to know for sure if you have mold is to have an indoor environmental specialist perform a mold test, there are three signs you can look for to spot even the sneakiest of mold problems:

• A strange odor
• An obvious moisture issue
• Discolored walls, stains and black spots

Strange Odor

One of the first signs that a building is infested with mold is usually a strong, musty odor. If your building smells like it just went through a heavy rainstorm even though it’s been dry out, you may have a mold problem. Thoroughly inspect your place for any visual indicators of mold growth, and if you still don’t find anything, reach out to your local indoor environmental specialist to perform a test.

Moisture Problems

Where there is or was sitting moisture or moisture problems, chances are that there is mold. If your building was recently in a flood, if you’ve had problems with leaky or burst pipes, if your roof leaks or if your building has endured any other moisture issues, let a Affton, MO mold remediation team know about them, as mold thrives in wet or damp environments.

Wall Discoloration

Wall discoloration may be the first visual indicator you have of a mold issue. Yellowed walls, water stains and black spots are all signs of a mold infestation. Once you start to notice wall discoloration, you can be certain the mold growth has begun to spread, at which point it is time to call in the experts.

If you suspect that your building has mold, reach out to your local indoor environmental specialist to perform a mold test. That is the only way to know for sure if you have an infestation and to receive advice on how to handle it.
Visit for more information on mold.

How To Create a Fire Contingency Plan for Your Business

2/14/2018 (Permalink)

Every business in Affton, MO needs to have a contingency plan in place in case an emergency breaks out. A fire can be caused from a number of sources, from electrical appliances to natural events. Before this happens, if it ever does, you should develop an evacuation plan that you review with your employees regularly. That way everyone knows what to do, so panic and confusion can be minimized.

1. Develop a Warning System to Protect Employees

The safety of your employees is of the utmost importance. You should develop a method to contact everyone in the building in case a fire ever breaks out. You should have fire alarms throughout the building, especially if you operate out of a particularly large property. You should also have plenty of emergency supplies on-hand, including fire extinguishers and a first aid kit.

2. Review Insurance Policies

Your contingency plan should also include all information relevant to your insurance policy. This includes information related to whether your policy covers fires at all and how much you stand to receive in reimbursement. If you have not spoken with your insurance agent for a while, then you need to speak with him or her to make sure you are covered for everything. It will help your business get back on its feet more quickly following an emergency.

3. Practice This Plan With Employees

It is a good idea to have practice evacuation drills with your employees so that people know how to respond to a fire. It is also a good idea to hold educational seminars to teach people basic fire safety methods. For example, it is recommended to hold a class teaching people how to properly use a fire extinguisher.

When you create a contingency plan, you hope you will never have to use it. However, it is always preferable to be safe rather than sorry.
 Visit for more information on commercial fire damage.

2 Important Calls To Make After a Fire

2/7/2018 (Permalink)

You just had a residential or business fire in Affton, MO. The shock is setting in and you may be at a loss for what to do next. You know that you have to restore your property, and you know that smoke cleaning needs to be done. It is common to be unsure of whom to call. Here is what to do after a fire.

1. Call Insurance Company

If you have fire insurance, your first call should be to the insurance company. The person who is best qualified to talk to you about fire restoration should be your agent. He or she can talk you through what you are going to need from the house to file your claim. Do not touch any of your damaged items until you have made the call. You may need to take pictures. Additionally, if you do not know the extent of structural damage, touching anything on your own is dangerous.

2. Call Restoration Service

Once the fire is out, it is time for the cleanup to begin. Soot damage and water damage can be an issue even if the fire was a small one. Smoke can make its way into air vents, kitchen cupboards, electronics and other hard-to-reach places. Whether you own a home or your own business, you may need to board up your windows until the restoration is complete.

Without the proper equipment or training to clear a building as structurally sound and cleaned of all fire damage, it can be more costly in the end for you to try to restore your building instead of using a restoration service. Equally, a fire is already stressful. You do not have to take care of fire restoration on your own.

Fire restoration is nothing to skimp on after a fire. For most people, the chaos that comes after an event can be difficult to navigate. It is important to know whom to call.

Visit for more information on fire damage.

3 Easy Tips to Prepare for a Storm

1/24/2018 (Permalink)

Some storms can pass with little to no impact, while other storms may be utterly devastating. If you’re about to be hit with a storm that may flood water into your home, it’s important that you prepare for it. The more prepared you are, the less your home will be impacted by water damage and the less your flood specialist will have to deal with.

1. Protect Against Flooding

You can take on this first step before there is any sign of a storm. It’s preferred that you flood-proof your home before there is a problem with flooding. First, you can make sure that your basement and walls are sealed with a waterproofing compound to give it a defense against the flood. Second, if you know that a storm is coming, you can construct barriers to stop the flood water from getting into your home.

2. Protect Yourself and Your Belongings

If a flooded building is imminent, then it’s time to be prepared for the water. First, you need to make sure that your valuables are on higher ground. If you have an upper floor, move your valuable items there. Additionally, you should make sure that all of your utilities are turned off from their main switch and disconnect all electrical appliances. When there is a flooded building, it’s possible that water could cause an electrical situation if these items are left on.

3. Pack an Emergency Kit

If you know that there is going to be a flood, it’s possible that you will only have to deal with the pain of water removal once the storm is over. However, in more serious scenarios, you may be required to evacuate. Always have an emergency kit with extra clothes packed and kept dry away from the flood.

Flood water can strike anywhere, and it can strike anyone. You should never be underprepared when dealing with the prospect of water damage in Affton, MO. Visit for more information on storm damage.

3 Things to Do When Your Toilet Overflows

1/24/2018 (Permalink)

A flooded toilet can be one of the most frustrating and unsanitary issues a homeowner can face. However, you don’t have to get overwhelmed if it happens in your home in Affton, MO. There are three primary steps to take if your toilet floods into your home:

1. Stop the water
2. Clear the area
3. Call the professionals

Following these instructions can help you avoid further sewer damage. Here is some more detail on what to do.

1. Stop the Water

As your toilet spills onto your floor, the tank may remain empty, which tells the water to keep coming. To minimize the damage, it’s essential that you stop the water as soon as possible. First, put on protective footwear to prevent your skin from contacting the water. Then, locate the valve near the base of your toilet. Turn the valve until the water stops.

2. Clear the Area

The sewer damage from a toilet overflow not only affects your home, but it can also harm the people and animals inside your home. Make sure that everyone stays away from the contaminated water. If you have electrical outlets near where the water is flowing, you may also want to cut off power to that area of your home.

3. Call the Professionals

Toilet overflow is “black water,” which means that it could contain harmful bacteria, toxins, and parasites. That’s one big reason you should not tackle this problem alone. Call a local sewage company that does a restoration. Their crews have the equipment and knowledge to clean the sewage up properly.

After the restoration crew finishes, you might want to clean the full bathroom with bleach to ensure no mold grows after the fact.

When your toilet starts flowing the wrong way, you may feel tempted to panic. However, you can prevent more sewer damage and get things cleaned up by following these three simple steps. Visit for more information on water damage.

3 Things to Look for in a Water Damage Restoration Company

1/24/2018 (Permalink)

It can be devastating to discover water damage in your property. You need to act quickly to get a professional out to your property to address the broken pipes immediately. Hopefully, you already know of a water cleanup company in Affton, MO to lend a helping hand, but if you do not, then here are some qualities to look for in an organization before you spend any money:

1. Insurances, Licenses and Certifications

You do not want to hire anyone to work on your commercial building who is not accredited and certified to work in your state. Certification proves the contractor has acquired the necessary documents and has gone through training to clean up the damage concisely. Insurance is critical in case someone ends up suffering an injury on your property. If the water damage restoration company does not have insurance, then you could be liable and have to pay for medical bills out of your own pocket.

2. Proximity

Time is of the essence when it comes to addressing flooding in your commercial building. You should hire a mold remediation company that can come out quickly, because it only takes 24 hours for mold to begin to develop. Additionally, addressing the damage is sure to increase the likelihood of being able to restore valuables.

3. Experience

You do not want to address flooding in your building on your own because you likely do not have the supplies necessary to remove water. You also do not know how to properly repair damaged structures, such as drywall. The same principle holds true for the water damage remediation company in Affton, MO you hire. Always ask a contractor about the number of years he or she has worked in the industry. Hire someone who has been involved in this line of work for years as opposed to someone who just got a license. Visit for more information on commercial water damage.

Why Does This House Smell Moldy?

12/15/2017 (Permalink)

Why Does This House Smell Moldy?

You know that smell. That musty odor can be the first clue to alert you that mold is growing somewhere in your Affton, Missouri house. When you smell mold, it means you may be inhaling mold spores or a toxic compound often referred to as a mycotoxin. Since mold can begin to grow as quickly as 24-48 hours after a flood or other event that moves water into areas not traditionally designed for wetness or dampness, immediate mold remediation efforts may be required.

Hidden Mold

When you can smell mold, discolored surfaces can signal mold growth. Hard materials that feel soft or crumble into pieces may also be indications of mold. Common hidden moldy regions can include:

Ceiling tiles after roof leaks
Cabinets or crawl spaces that house leaky pipes
Shower curtains
Air ducts and vents
Basements with water seeping into the structure

Odor Control

During periods of growth, many types of mold produce a gas called a Microbial Volatile Organic Compound (MVOC). While air freshening sprays and cleaning products may cover up the moldy smell, to eliminate the smell rather masking it, the source of water must be removed from the structure. Mold can continue to grow and expand onto new surfaces by emitting spores that float airborne until they encounter a new host surface.

Remediation Options

There are several methods for removing mycotoxin issues from the home, depending on the type of mold that is producing the toxic substances. Options can include:

Bleach with 5% sodium hypochlorite
High levels of heat
Ozone, as long as there are no humans in the house
Activated carbon filters

Professional assistance may be needed for thorough mold remediation and to remove stubborn mycotoxin issues in Affton, Missouri homes. The musty odor can act as an early warning for hidden mold problems that need immediate attention. If left unchecked, mold may continue to grow, leading to more damage and cost in the future.
Visit for more information on mold.

How To Use a Fire Extinguisher in the Home

12/15/2017 (Permalink)

How To Use a Fire Extinguisher in the Home

A fire extinguisher is an essential safety tool in the home. By using this, you can stop fires before they become out of hand, and you can minimize fire damage. However, it is important to know how to use an extinguisher before you come across a fire. With these tips, you can learn how to handle the situation calmly and effectively.

Classifying the Extinguisher

Before you attempt to quench a fire, it’s important to identify the three types of extinguishers.

Class A is used for fires started by wood, clothes, rubber, or paper.
Class B is for fires started by flammable liquid.
Class C is for electrical fires.

Knowing the difference can help you determine how to approach the problem correctly.

Using the Extinguisher

If a fire starts, quickly grab your fire extinguisher and pull the safety pin from the top of the cylinder. Aim the nozzle at the fire and firmly press the trigger. Sweep the nozzle side to side to completely extinguish the fire and minimize fire damage.

Once you have quenched the fire, don’t turn your back until you are positive that you’ve completed the job. If you can’t extinguish the flames, call the fire department in Affton, Missouri and quickly evacuate your home.

Storing Your Extinguisher

The best possible places to put your fire extinguisher are areas where fires are likely to break out. For instance, put the safety tool in your pantry so that you can easily prevent a kitchen fire. Besides a smoke detector, an extinguisher is the best line of defense against accidental fires.

You should put an extinguisher on every level of your house. If a fire starts, you may lose valuable time by running downstairs to grab the extinguisher.

Accidental fires can be contained by properly using your fire extinguisher. By learning how to use this important tool and where to put it, you can fight flames before they get destructively out of hand. Visit for more information on fire damage.