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How to Replace a Wax Seal on the Toilet

10/9/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage How to Replace a Wax Seal on the Toilet Always make sure to check your toilet for any leaks to avoid water damage

A leaking toilet can cause a whole host of unpleasant, and sometimes expensive, problems. Most toilets, with the correct care, can last up to 40 years without trouble. Without minimal attention, however, unaddressed leaks and could cause significant damages.

Diagnose the Problem

If you see water leaking out from below the toilet, act immediately to diagnose and fix the problem before your Auburn, WA, home suffers structural damage. Most of the time, this type of trouble happens when the wax seal fails. Simply, replacing the gasket should provide the necessary watertight seal and resolve this toilet repair.

Plan the Repair

In many cases, a puddle of water at the base of the toilet is a sign that the seal is bad. Occasionally, however, there is a different problem. Some examples include

  • A faulty shutoff valve
  • A cracked tank on an old toilet
  • Loose supply tubes
  • A sweaty toilet bowl

These problems may require the attention of an experienced professional. After determining the leak does come from under the toilet, try tightening the closet bolts at the base of the toilet. You may resolve the problem by adding more pressure on the wax gasket. Just be careful not to put too much pressure on the bolts or you'll crack the toilet's base.

Remove the Toilet

If tightening the bolts doesn't solve the problem, turn off the water at the shutoff value, and remove the tank lid. Flush the toilet while holding the handle down until as much water as possible has drained from the tank. After all water has been removed, gently rock the toilet back and forth to break the existing wax seal.

Complete the Repair

Remove the broken wax ring and scrape away any remaining wax. At this point, you may notice indications of another necessary toilet repair, such as a cracked flange. Otherwise, set the new gasket down onto the closet flange, centering it for the best results and replace the toilet, replacing the supply tube and bolts as you go.

3 Worst Water Leaks for a Commercial Property

9/17/2018 (Permalink)

Commercial 3 Worst Water Leaks for a Commercial Property A small water leak may seem harmless but if it persists over the long haul, it can cost you thousands of dollars.

Buildings in Auburn, WA, can have non-visible water leaks. Often leakages occur in underground pipes. By the time owners discover they have a problem is when they're hit with an excessive water bill. In other instances, a water leak is obvious. Continue reading for tell-tale signs of potential plumbing hazards.

1. Plumbing System

It's often difficult detecting leaks because the pipeline is located underground and behind the walls. These leakages occur when you have a pipe break during freezing weather. Additionally, sewer lines deteriorate over time, which leads to leaky pipes. Here are a few commons signs to look for:

• Wet soil
• Spongy floors
• Crumbling plaster
• Water stains
• Warped walls
• Mold patches
• Musty odors

Generally, insurance companies cover the cost of water damage due to busted pipes. This gives you a peace of mind knowing that your property is protected.

2. Ceilings

Do you notice damp patches on the ceilings? If so, you likely have a malfunctioning waterproofing membrane. When this happens, water seeps through porous concrete slabs. In this instance, a water leak travels from the top floors to the lower floors, especially in bathrooms. The constant dripping often results in structural damage and mold development.

3. Faucets

Leaky faucets drive up water-related costs. Heavy use of these fixtures places lots of wear and tear on its parts, such as the washer. The ongoing dripping comes with its own expenses, such as higher than usual water bills. In many cases, other faucet components malfunction requiring a replacement of individual parts or the whole fixture.

A small water leak may seem harmless but if it persists over the long haul, it can cost you thousands of dollars. If you notice any plumbing, ceiling and faucet leakages in your building, chances are you have a major problem. In these instances, it's best to enlist the services of a disaster company in Auburn, WA, to handle the situation, especially if you notice any large leaks. For more information, visit

Don’t Let the River Run through It: Three Steps To Protect Your Home This Flood Season

9/14/2018 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Don’t Let the River Run through It: Three Steps To Protect Your Home This Flood Season Flooding is scary, but, while you may not be able to stop a flood from happening, there are several things you can do to protect your home.

Storm damage broadly focuses on the numerous ways a storm can hurt your home, but flooding has to be the most destructive element of severe weather. Flood damage goes beyond just the dampness because floodwaters carry contaminants that can affect you and your house. Fortunately, there are ways to protect your home this flood season.

1. Perform Routine Maintenance

The best way to protect your home is to ensure that everything is working as it should. You should have your sewers cleaned and your pipes inspected for roots and cracks because clogs, blockages, and collapses increase the likelihood of sewage backups and floods. The idea is to make sure that all of your pipes are draining as they should be before the weather moves in.

2. Anchor Potential Debris

When the likelihood of flooding is at its peak, you should anchor any potential debris because in flood currents even the most substantial items can sometimes be pushed around, possibly causing damage to your home. The idea is to tie down things like yard furniture so that they don’t become battering rams. By tying these types of items up, you help to protect not only your home but your neighbors as well.

3. Install Preventative and Protective Measures

To protect your home this flood season, you may want to purchase and install sump pumps with a backup power supply. If you are not sure of how to install these items, you can look in the Auburn, WA, area for flood and restoration specialists. Additionally, to protect your most valuable items, it is a good idea to elevate any mechanics to above predicted flood levels. You may also want to purchase several waterproof containers to secure any valuable and fragile items.

Flooding is a scary side of mother nature, but, while you may not be able to stop a flood from happening, there are several things you can do to protect your home from incurring the most damage. For more information, visit

Mold Removal Begins With an Assessment of the Problem

9/9/2018 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation Mold Removal Begins With an Assessment of the Problem If you are facing a mold problem, especially if it’s black mold, your best course of action would be to bring in mold cleanup experts.

Mold is a problem that has plagued homeowners since the beginning of time. There are many strains of mold out there, waiting for the opportunity to move into your home. Your job is to fend them off by keeping your home as dry and as clean as possible. It is a good idea to perform a regular mold assessment so that you can detect it in the early stages. This is especially true if moisture is a persistent problem.

Testing provides answers some typical homeowner questions.
• What is that strange smell?
• Is that mold growing on the wall?
• What kinds of mold do I have?

Consider Bringing in a Mold Expert

If you want a complete and accurate mold assessment, skip the personal test kits and go straight to the experts. A certified mold specialist in Auburn, WA, would have the knowledge and skills to determine your mold situation, but an environmental hygienist would do just as well. They can test your air and surfaces for mold. They can also take samples of various materials throughout your house looking for evidence of a mold problem. With this approach, experts can determine the types, levels and likely locations of mold.

Understand the Final Report and Recommended

Course of Action
When the assessment is complete, your expert will deliver the final report. It will tell you, in detail, about the mold and mildew in your home. It will also recommend a course of action if one is required.

When reading the mold assessment report, the one thing that homeowners do not want to see is mention of a black mold problem. They may not understand exactly what that mold is or does, but they know that they want it out of the house quickly.

If you are facing a mold problem, especially if it’s black mold, your best course of action would be to bring in mold cleanup experts who know how to safely, quickly and completely handle these situations. For more information, visit

Understanding Your Commercial Property Policy

8/21/2018 (Permalink)

Commercial Understanding Your Commercial Property Policy Protecting your commercial property from whatever problems could arise is part of the cost of doing business.

Your commercial insurance package for your property in Auburn, WA, should include all the policies you need to protect you in times of crisis. If, for example, your building has fire damage, the cost of remediation and restoration services is covered by your commercial property policy. There are some things that property insurance doesn't cover, however, so you should talk to your agent to build a thorough portfolio.

What Is Covered

Property insurance typically covers damages caused by fire, natural disaster or theft. You should shop around for a policy or set of policies that will pay to place or restore the things that are necessary for your business operations:

• Building
• Production equipment housed in the building
• Inventory stored in building
• Office equipment
• Important documents and records
• Outdoor elements, such as fencing and signage
• Landscaping

The property policy that is part of your commercial insurance package generally covers damages to the building as long as they were not caused by neglect or intentional harm.

What Is Not Covered

Some natural disasters are not covered by property insurance. Floods, for example, tend to cause such extensive damage that most areas require a separate flood policy. The same can be said of windstorm and hail damage. Even if inclement weather is covered under your policy, the repair costs estimated by restoration experts may exceed your property policy's limits. It's a good idea, therefore, to have additional policies to cover specific types of damage or an umbrella policy to extend the amount of coverage you receive. If workers are injured by the same event that caused damage to the building, you will need a workers' compensation policy and perhaps general liability coverage to pay for medical bills, lost wages and potential legal fees associated with the situation.

Protecting your commercial property from whatever problems could arise is part of the cost of doing business. Talk to your insurance agent about the commercial insurance policies that are right for your business. For more information, visit

A Comparison of Mitigation and Restoration Services

8/20/2018 (Permalink)

Commercial A Comparison of Mitigation and Restoration Services The water damage from the storm must be mitigated before anything can be restored.

If a storm causes water damage to your commercial property in Auburn, WA, you may be at a loss to decide whom to call first. Do you find a reputable flood cleanup company, or should you call a restoration company instead? Mitigation and restoration are often two stages of the same overall process. Mitigation keeps more damage from happening, while restoration involves repairing the damage that was done.

Step One: Mitigation

Mitigation is what expert technicians do to halt the damage that floodwaters are doing to your building. They can employ several tactics to accomplish this:

• Flood cuts
• Extraction
• Dehumidification
• Industrial pumping
• Increased air flow

During the mitigation process, the flood cleanup company does whatever it takes to keep the damage from spreading or getting worse. One of the most important reasons to do this is to stop the growth of mold. If water damage is not taken care of quickly, mold can start to grow in porous materials, causing more problems.

Step Two: Restoration

Restoration is what happens after damage has already been stopped. Before the restoration process can begin, all ruined materials must be removed from the area so that only the items to be restored are present. Restoration may involve rebuilding the structure of the building by replacing insulation and drywall. It often includes aesthetic touches, such as painting and replacing floor tiles, so that the new materials and the old materials match. The restoration company can also salvage many items, such as electronics or important documents, that were affected by the flood.

If you are confused about whether to call a flood cleanup company that specializes in mitigation or restoration, stop to consider where in the process you are. The water damage from the storm must be mitigated before anything can be restored. You may even find a company that has expertise in both processes, thus streamlining your recovery efforts.  For more information, visit

Water Heater Failure: 3 Steps for Protecting Your Home

8/15/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage Water Heater Failure: 3 Steps for Protecting Your Home Taking a few steps to contain the problem while you wait for help to arrive can reduce cleanup costs and protect the rest of your property.

You may not give much thought to the water heater in your Auburn, WA, home, at least not until something goes wrong. For example, a leaking water heater can cause a lot of problems in a short amount of time, especially if the leak is severe. However, there are several actions you can take right away to prevent water damage from spreading until you can call in a professional flood cleanup and restoration service.

1. Shut Off the Water Lines

A failed water heater can lose water rapidly and create a flood in your utility room. This may cause damage to the floor and any other large appliances you store there, such as a washer or dryer. To prevent this, shut off your home’s water right away. This may slow the leak and contain the water to a small area.

2. Turn Off the Room’s Power

A broken water heater can spew water at high velocity and damage any electrical systems that may be in the room. You can try to mitigate some of this damage by shutting down the power in that room. However, it is important that you only attempt this if your home’s fuse box is located somewhere other than the flooded room. If it is located there, call your local power company for help.

3. Seal the Room

You can prevent a leaking water heater from causing widespread water damage by temporarily sealing off the room. Shut the nearest door, and plug the base with absorbent cotton towels. Even if you cannot stop the leak, this may help confine the spread of water until a cleanup crew arrives. Try to avoid entering the flooded area itself, as leaking water from the tank may be hot.

A leaking water heater can cause plenty of damage to your Auburn, WA, home. However, taking a few steps to contain the problem while you wait for help to arrive can reduce cleanup costs and protect the rest of your property. For more information, visit

Protecting Your Home in the Aftermath of a Flood

7/23/2018 (Permalink)

It is natural to want to get the ball rolling on cleanup after your home in Auburn, WA, has received flood damage. However, it is often said that it is best to wait until an adjuster has come to assess the damage so that you can make an accurate claim on your flood insurance policy. Let common sense be your guide to decide between waiting and acting in the aftermath of a storm.

Document the Damage.

Once a devastating storm clears, insurance adjusters will be extremely busy, and it may be difficult to obtain an appointment. However, to protect your home from further harm such as mold damage, it is important to act quickly. Once you have contacted your insurer to begin the claims process, protect yourself with documentation.

• Take lots of digital photographs and/or video of all damaged structures and belongings before clean up, removal, or restoration.
• Compile a list of all damaged items and their value, and organize any receipts you have retained. Your credit card company can help with this.
• Keep receipts for any professional remediation services, materials purchased, or dump fees as a result of the flood.
• The adjuster will help you prepare a proof of loss document to be filed with your flood insurance company.

Begin the Cleanup.

While you wait for the adjuster to complete the inspection of the destruction you have thoroughly documented, there are things you can do to minimize further damage. Experts suggest the following:

• Pump, mop, and blot excess water.
• Remove and dry furniture and loose items.
• Remove valuables and safely store them.
• Circulate the air by using fans and/or air conditioners if it is safe to use electricity.

Waiting for a response on your flood insurance claim will require patience. Take action to reclaim your home, and be sure to document your efforts.

For more information, please visit us at

Tips for Cleaning After a House Fire

7/16/2018 (Permalink)

The good news is that you and your family are safe. The bad news is that your home in Auburn, WA, suffered a blaze that caused fire, soot and smoke damage. It smells like a bonfire you cannot escape. What actions do you take next? First, go outside, take a deep breath of fresh air and relax. Your home is going to return to its previous state, but it takes time and effort. Follow these tips after a fire to start the process of recovery.

Immediately After the Fire.

• Safety is always your first priority. Do not go inside of your house until it is safe. Be aware of the dangers of standing water and electricity, structural damage and risk of slipping on wetness and debris.
• Once clear to enter, be careful not to touch or walk on soiled areas. Rather, lay down clean towels to absorb the soot damage. Change the filter on your HVAC if accessible.
• Do not attempt smoke cleaning on your own, as improper techniques may set stains and odors. Fire restoration specialists are trained and have the equipment necessary to correctly clean your home and belongings.

The Cleanup Process.

• Smoke damage professionals arrive quickly to assess the damage, typically in four hours or less.
• First, the structural components of your home are properly cleaned. This can include walls, ceilings, flooring and carpets. The walls are prepared for painting so that the soot damage does not retain its odor.
• Your belongings are cleaned and deodorized using a combination of specialized wet and dry cleaning. This can include furniture, electronics, rugs and other personal items.
• Sources of odors are identified and eliminated, leaving your home truly deodorized.

The combination of fire and smoke damage can wreak havoc on your home in Auburn, WA. Fortunately, with the proper steps and professional help, your home and possessions can be revitalized and restored to pre-fire condition.

For more information, please visit us at

5 Steps To Keep Your Restaurant Mold-Free

7/11/2018 (Permalink)

Dealing with mold is an issue no restaurant owner wishes to endure. The high humidity of a busy kitchen can be the perfect breeding ground for it, but as inevitable as mold spores are in the environment, mold growth is an avoidable occurrence you can help prevent with these five simple steps:

1. Keep Humidity Levels Low.

The EPA recommends interior humidity levels be kept between 30 and 50 percent to limit the possibility of mold development. Aim for the ideal level of 40 percent by utilizing fans and dehumidifiers in key locations such as the kitchen, bathroom and basement.

2. Maintain Ventilation Systems.

The nature of a restaurant kitchen creates immense amounts of water and steam, making ideal conditions for mold spores to develop. Ensure there is an efficient ventilation system in place in the kitchen and dishwashing area. Regular maintenance checks should verify the system is clean and functioning properly.

3. Clean Regularly and Thoroughly. 

Mold thrives in dark, damp places that are often unseen to the obvious line of vision. The nooks and crannies of a restaurant kitchen can create ample opportunities for mold to develop: underneath sinks, behind appliances or within refrigerators. Move equipment often, checking for moisture or water damage and cleaning on top, underneath, and behind all surfaces to minimize the opportunity for growth.

4. Inspect All Food.

Chefs and cooks should be well-trained to identify signs of mold growth on food. Mold spores spread quickly, and any contaminated food could not only infect other food items but also spread to all areas of the kitchen.

5. Schedule Professional Inspections.

Prevention is the preferred method when it comes to mold growth. To keep your Auburn, WA, restaurant running fungus-free, it is best to schedule a consultation with the professionals. A mold remediation team has IICRC training credentials paired with high-tech equipment to verify your restaurant is not only mold-free, but also at low risk for any future development. With a clean kitchen and a professional contact, mold should find no home in your restaurant!

For more information, please visit us at