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Coronavirus Disinfection: Show Customers You Care by Disinfecting your Resort, Hotel and Restaurant’s Common Areas

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HURRICANE SEASON ALERT! You can buy products tax-free until June 6th in preparation for the Florida Hurricane Season

Florida’s “Tax Free” days starts on May 30th, 2019 and this is a great time to plan ahead and begin gathering all the necessary items to keep you safe, well-nourished and hydrated

If you have lived in Florida for at least a few years, you’ve gone through the preparation and the rush of getting your home ready for a hurricane. But it doesn’t stop there. Your family needs to be aware of its needs in the aftermath of a strong hurricane, which is likely to leave you without electric power and water service for a few days, a few weeks or longer.

The entire state of Florida is a common target for strong tropical storms and hurricanes. We are located in an area with historic hurricane landfalls over the past 50 years. This points to a strong likelihood that this pattern will continue, with the possibility of stronger storms over the next few decades.

“It’s great to see our State creating tax relief programs like this,” says Bill DeMent, Founder and CEO of Hole in the Wall Drywall Repair & Restoration. “It helps people keep the potential of a hurricane in perspective, after enjoying many months without strong storms.”

Every homeowner should be aware of the threat even a Category 1 hurricane creates and preparing for it will help them be ready for the aftermath. The same goes for Property Managers who must tend to the needs of tenants who could be affected by a hurricane. One thing is for sure, water is often a culprit in the headaches these customers get following a major tropical storm or a hurricane.

“After Central Florida was hit by Hurricane Maria in 2017, we saw a surge in service calls related to water damage,” added James Groves, Chief Operating Officer for Hole in the Wall Drywall Repair & Restoration. “As people prepare for tax-free hurricane-relief products, we want them to become aware of the need to react quickly after water damage has occurred.

No one can ever be fully prepared for the grief a hurricane can bring, but as long as you have plenty of water, non-perishable food and batteries to keep your flashlights going, most people will have the ability to get through it.

If you want to know what “hurricane preparedness” products qualify under Florida’s tax-relief package HB 7123, follow this link to WESH News: https://www.wesh.com/article/florida-hurricane-sales-tax-free-holiday/27661544

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Bathroom Leaks are a Formula for Disaster

If you’re not a professional with the knowledge and experience to remediate a leak properly, you could be making the problem even worse than it was

Recently, a friend posted a photo on Facebook detailing a bathroom leak they were dealing with. While reading their comments, it was clear they were taking all of the DIY steps found commonly on the internet or common sense would dictate. This included a few fans placed strategically to dry out the affected areas.

We felt like it would be a good idea to reach out and see what had happened and if our company could be of any help. During our first conversation, they indicated that they had been battling with an unknown leak for several weeks without any effective resolution.

Water Leak in the BathroomAfter being unable to resolve the leak, they contacted a plumber who was able to find a leak originating from a faulty seal on their shower door. They dismantled a partition wall half way up to the ceiling and removed several pieces of trim. All good things in theory—but despite these steps they still found some mold on the drywall and removed the affected pieces. Their fans were on and working. Or so they believed. 

One of the many dangers for a DIY water mitigation can be adding airflow (using fans) on an area that has had microbial growth but has not been disinfected yet. When you place airflow in that situation, you run high risk of aerosolizing mold spores which can contaminate more areas in the home, including getting into the AC system.

We started by asking the usual series of questions: Was there any discoloring or evident warping of the walls? Were the walls malleable if they pressed on? Did they feel cooler to the touch in any areas? To each of these, their answers indicated that there was no evident issue.

Finally, because we wanted to be certain they would be taken care of, I asked one more question. Had they tested the walls with any type of moisture detector? And the answer was obviously “no”. 

Water has a natural tendency to migrate from wet to dry. Through a wicking process, water originating from the floor can travel all the way up to the ceiling and from one end of a wall to the other, given enough time. Gravity is also a powerful force in helping water move from above to below.

The primary concern in any situation where water has spread is microbial growth. The conditions that promote growth are a relative humidity of 60% or higher. In addition to reducing the relative humidity, you must get moisture content below 16% in order to preventing microbial growth. 

Following our advice, our friend purchased a non-invasive moisture meter from their local hardware store and started testing nearby walls. Sure enough, the water had migrated farther than they thought. In fact, they were getting wet readings at least five feet further down one wall and a few feet up the wall as they moved back to the original source.

Realizing they were in over their heads, they called us back. Once there, I brought in an invasive moisture probe and determined the scope in the bathroom. I still wanted to check one last place. The opposite side of the affected wall. And sure enough, in the closet down by the baseboard I found moisture—a lot more moisture. 

We removed a baseboard, drilled some drying holes and set up a few air-movers and a dehumidifier to begin the drying process. We put up containment for the bathroom and a few days later, everything was dry. 

The moral of the story is simple: DIY projects have become more popular as access to the Internet offer homeowners more options for saving time and money, however, without proper equipment and training, a DIY water mitigation project is a risk not worth taking.

As home owners ourselves, we will never fault someone for being self-reliant or trying to save money by doing projects themselves. We would, however, caution home owners on taking on a water mitigation project themselves. The potential risks associated with excess humidity and moisture levels in the home far outweigh the cost of professional attention.

Certain types of microbial growth can occur within 24 hours of water exposure. Couple that with the potential for a leak to go unnoticed for many weeks, and a water leak can cause major problems if left unresolved.

It’s important to know that in many instances, a wet area in a structure can be dried to safe levels within 24 hours—but only if it is addressed immediately. The health and safety of your family should be of paramount importance. The sooner a water leak is addressed the better it is for the home owner and your family’s wellbeing.

Hole in the Wall Restoration has the experience and knowledge required to deal with leak and flood dry outs, as well as the resulting mold problems. We are ready to serve your water damage and restoration needs.

Contact Hole in the Wall Restoration today at (407) 492-2160 to schedule an inspection of any drywall potential damage in your home.

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Wet Drywall Today can be a Mold Problem Tomorrow

It can take as little as 48 hours for mold to develop (and is some cases as early as 18 hours) if an area is not dried immediately after it gets wet, particularly inside walls and ceilings—so, chances are, you may have a few moldy spots around your home

When one day you notice a wet area on your wall or ceiling, many questions will come to mind: Do I have a broken pipe behind the wall? Is my roof leaking down into the ceiling? Did my kids let the bathtub overflow?

Mold Removal ServicesWhether you know there is water damage to your drywall or not, you will also be wondering how long it has been there or if there is mold behind the drywall. Chances are there may be mold because here in Florida mold is a common problem in most homes.

Wet drywall can mean a broken pipe or a leaky roof and yes, sometime it can mean mold. A professionally-certified water mitigation technician can help determine if there is a mold problem.

A water mitigation tech will develop a plan to dry the wet area using professional-grade air blowers and dehumidifiers. In many cases, the drywall may need to be removed and replaced with new drywall.

If mold is found to be present on the drywall or behind it, then precautionary steps will need to be taken. Initially this will require containing and sanitizing the area affected by mold, using HEPA air filtration devices, followed by thorough drying—all while monitoring moisture levels to ensure the mold will not return.

While all wet drywall is not dangerous, it can become a dangerous problem over time if left unresolved without the use of professional help. Our techs hold professional certificates issued by the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC), ensuring your peace of mind throughout the remediation process.

Trust the knowledge of Hole in the Wall Restoration to identify, treat and resolve any mold problems resulting from wet drywall areas. Don’t allow your family to be exposed to mold spores in a damaged wall or ceiling—act today to reduce health problems tomorrow.

Contact Hole in the Wall Restoration today at (407) 492-2160 to schedule an inspection of any potential drywall damage in your home.