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How Do I Install a New Toilet?

11/9/2022 (Permalink)

Toilet Installation It's time to install your new toilet.

Installing a New Toilet

Don't be afraid of the toilet. It's an essential part of your home, and it doesn't have to be complicated. In fact, installing a new one is easy — as long as you're careful and follow these steps.

Turn off the water supply

The first step to installing a new toilet is to turn off the water supply. If you don't know where your water shutoff valve is, this is a good reason to call a plumber or handyman with experience. The process of turning off the water supply involves shutting off pipes that are running through your walls, so it's not something you want to mess up if you're unfamiliar with plumbing.

Disconnect the water supply line

This can be done by shutting off the main valve or turning off individual shut-off valves for each fixture. 

Next, remove the supply line from the valve using a wrench and disconnect it from your toilet by removing 2 screws as needed on either side of where it connects at its base (most toilets will have 4 screws). Make sure you have something handy such as a bucket or large bowl to catch any water that may leak out during this process!

Drain the tank and bowl by holding down the handle and flushing

Now that you've done all the prep work, it's time to install your new toilet. First, drain the tank and bowl by holding down the handle and flushing. Use a bucket to catch water as it drains into the bowl, so you don't have to mop up a mess. If you're still having issues with leaking after doing this step once or twice, try re-tightening any bolts/screws that were loose before as well as re-adding additional washers if needed.

Remove old toilet

If there is a wax ring, remove it by prying it up with a screwdriver. Then use a putty knife to scrape away any remaining wax from around the base of your new toilet. If your toilet has been glued to the floor, use a pry bar to lift it up and off its flange.

  • Unbolt or remove bolts on bottom portion of tank and set aside for re-use if possible (if not, don't worry about removing them now)
  • Unbolt or remove bolts on top portion of tank using ratchet wrench and socket

Inspect and clean the closet flange

The closet flange is a metal ring that fits in the drainpipe, allowing you to mount the new toilet on top of it. The closet flange should be accessible from below where you plan to install your new toilet. You can do this by lifting on the wax ring on top of your existing toilet or by removing it entirely if it's not too firmly stuck down (if so, use a flathead screwdriver).

Once you take off that section of wax ring, look at what's underneath: You're looking for damage or corrosion around any seams between different pieces of metal—this can mean that part won't seal properly or could cause leaks. If there's visible corrosion or dents, replace that piece before proceeding with installation.

Install new wax ring and toilet

The wax ring is what seals the toilet to the floor. If you are replacing an old toilet, you need to buy a new wax ring and install it before installing your new toilet.

You can buy wax rings at any hardware store.

Toilet Installation

Toilet installation isn't rocket science, but it's not simple either. Follow these steps to do it right!

1. Ask for help. If you're installing a new toilet in your Providence, RI home, your best option is to ask a friend or family member who knows how to install toilets well. They can give you advice on what tools and materials to use, how much time the project will take, and whether they'll be able to help with any of the work itself (or if they'd like payment up front).

2. Don't try to do everything yourself. You may have seen videos on YouTube where people install their own toilets without any assistance - but don't take this as an example of something that can be easily done by most people! 

3. Take your time: Follow all instructions carefully so that everything goes smoothly.

Even if you've never installed a toilet before, we hope this guide has shown you that it's not too hard of a job. Just be sure to follow these steps and you'll be done in no time!

How Do I Know If My Fire Sprinklers Are Ready?

10/7/2022 (Permalink)

Automatic fire sprinkler in the office Fire sprinklers are a great way to protect your business.

What Are the Signs That My Fire Sprinklers Are Prepared?

Fire protection can be a critical part of your business and knowing how to keep your fire sprinkler system in top condition is important. Here are some tips for maintaining your sprinklers so that you can ensure that they're ready when you need them most.

About The Sprinkler System

Fire sprinklers are installed in buildings of all types and sizes. A fire sprinkler system is a network of pipes, valves and sprinkler heads connected to an alarm system that automatically detects the presence of smoke in a building. The detection initiates an automatic discharge from one or more pre-determined sprinklers, which releases water over a wide area to suppress the spread of fire while alerting occupants of the building.

Sprinkler maintenance is critical for ensuring that your automatic system operates properly and efficiently. A semi-annual inspection by a licensed professional can help you identify any issues before they become serious problems that could put people at risk.

Cleaning Your Sprinklers

How do you know when to clean your sprinklers?

You should clean them whenever they are dirty. This will ensure that they will be in good working order and able to put out water as soon as a fire starts. If you have an annual inspection from the fire department, the inspector may tell you when it is time for your sprinklers to be cleaned. You can also talk with an expert about this or look at maintenance schedules online if none of these options work for you.

What materials should I use to clean my sprinkler heads?

You will want a non-acidic cleaner that does not contain ammonia, bleach, or sodium hydroxide (also known as lye). These chemicals can damage the metal parts inside of your sprinklers. What do I do once I have my supplies ready?

When cleaning your sprinklers, make sure that all electrical power has been shut off before beginning any work on them! Next: lay down protective sheets like cardboard underneath each head so that no moisture can seep into anything else (and potentially start another fire!) Afterward: use small brushes or toothbrushes where needed; spray cleaners onto brush heads then scrub gently away dirt/grease buildup within assembly holes/pipe openings/etc.; rinse thoroughly after each part has been cleaned thoroughly enough so all traces of dirt are gone from inside components; finally dry everything well with paper towels then replace plastic covers back onto heads again after drying – you don't want mold growth happening inside there too!

Water Shut Off Valve

If your building has a water shut off valve, this is an excellent way to know if your fire sprinklers are ready.

  • Find the valve in the building. It should be near an exit door or a stairwell, and it will look like a small faucet that's not connected to anything else. You may need to ask someone for help locating it.
  • Shut off the water to your building by turning on the valve so that no water flows out of it at all. 

The Maintenance Schedule for Your Sprinkler System

It is important to know the maintenance schedule for your sprinkler system. If you do not know the maintenance schedule, ask your fire protection professional.

If you are unsure of the maintenance schedule, contact a fire protection professional who can provide you with information specific to your system and location.

Keep an eye on your fire protection and emergency systems to help you keep your business up and running smoothly.

It is important to know when your sprinkler system needs maintenance, especially if you are not familiar with it. If a professional isn't readily available, check for leaks in the piping, damaged or blocked heads and/or nozzles, as well as signs of rust or corrosion.

Fire sprinklers are a great way to protect your business, but they’re not always easy to maintain. That’s why we recommend hiring a professional fire protection company like us at Master Protection Services for all your fire protection needs. We can make sure your system is working properly and ready to use in any emergency.

Tips for Avoiding Water Damage Claims

8/30/2022 (Permalink)

ceiling tiles wet Water has ruined the ceiling tiles in this commercial building.

Ways To Keep Your Property Safe From Secondary Damage

Every year in Providence, RI, hundreds of business claims are filed as a result of water damage. Sometimes accidents are unavoidable; the damage might be the result of a flood, a pipe break, or a broken water heater.

These claims can be extremely costly, sometimes totaling ten thousand dollars or more, which could cause insurance rates to go up. And depending on what type you have, your policy might not cover certain things like secondary damage from mold.

Luckily, you can take steps to prevent or drastically reduce the amount of damage your building could sustain and save yourself from having to file a business claim. Here are a few things you can do to help keep your property safe from harm:

1. Leak Sealing

Make sure to inspect your foundation and areas around the exterior. If you find a crack or gap, make it watertight with the appropriate sealant.

2. Pipe Insulation

Any pipes that are exposed or accessible should be completely covered by insulation. If a pipe becomes frozen, it's easy for it to expand and burst. You should be able to find insulating materials at your local hardware store.

3. Drainage

It's important that water is able to drain away from the structure. Any gutters or downspouts should be kept clear of leaves or any other potential blockage, and the drainage areas should be free of debris.

4. Asset Protection

You should make sure that any valuable assets, such as electrical equipment and appliances, are raised above the floor to keep them safe from flooding. Non-waterproof valuables, such as important papers, should be stored in a secure place.

5. Consultation

It may be a good idea to consult with a professional water mitigation company about damage prevention. They can do a thorough inspection to make sure you haven't missed anything, and then give you expert, customized advice.

Filing a business claim for water damage is a hassle no one wants to have to deal with. But by taking the precautions outlined above, you can prevent most damage before it can happen.

What To Expect From an Indoor Environmental Tester

8/29/2022 (Permalink)

Aspergillus (mold) for microbiology in Lab. Mold sample taken for lab test

Hire an indoor environmental specialist to inspect any residence to which you are considering moving, as doing so could reveal costly complications before they become your debt to bear. Read on to learn how to pick one and what to expect once a professional has been selected.

What Indoor Environmental Testers Reveal

A comprehensive building examination can diagnose the presence of:

  • Allergens
  • Flammables
  • Asbestos
  • Radon
  • Mold

Because of its prevalence and potential for rapid progression, the existence of mold is the most serious discovery an investigator can make. Before signing a lease, hire an expert to clear the home you wish to occupy.

How Indoor Environmental Testers Work
Beware that inspections conducted by an indoor environmental specialist average $400, although more extensive analyses run upwards of $1,000. Larger living quarters will result in heavier fees. Added services, such as testing for specific pollutants, will further increase your bill.
Qualified testers carry certifications acquired from officially approved associations. When interviewing inspectors, request documentation as proof. If doubts persist, contact the claimed institution directly for verification.
Experts remain significantly more accurate than any off-the-shelf mold test. Avoid the risk of accidental misdiagnosis by using a fungal renovation service to definitively determine the existence of mold growth. This is done by taking samples from exposed surfaces using swabs or tape. In certain instances, specially trained detection dogs may become necessary to pinpoint a problem’s origin.
When searching for other harmful substances, equipment such as air quality monitors, moisture meters, and thermal imaging cameras may be utilized. Inspections typically last up to three hours. Once the process is complete, you may have to wait between two and ten days to receive a detailed report.
Use an indoor environmental specialist to identify possible issues inhabiting a prospective dwelling located in or around Elmwood, RI. Though the initial cash outlay may seem unnecessary, the price will always remain preferential to the expense of extensive remediation.

6 Steps of Fire Damage Restoration

8/24/2022 (Permalink)

Wall of a home damaged by fire, hole on a wall of a home A house fire can be devastating.

What Can You Expect During Professional Fire Restoration?

A house fire can be devastating enough, but what happens after firefighters extinguish the flames? There will be fire damage directly from the fire and the smoke, soot, extinguishing chemicals and water. The cleanup process must begin immediately to avoid additional loss. 

1. Inspection
Once the flames are out, professionals will do a thorough inspection of all of the affected areas. The assessment tells them the extent of destruction and the best remediation method.

2. Content Removal and Cleaning
All damaged materials is removed from the home, including personal belongings, appliances and furniture. Fire remediation professionals can determine what is salvageable and what isn’t.

3. Structure Stabilization
A fire can cause significant damage to the roof and structural core of a home. Therefore, the structure needs board-up services and roof tarping to secure it from further loss (e.g., vandalism or weather).

4. Water Damage Restoration
Cleaning up water damage is a significant part of most fire restoration jobs. Unsalvageable water-soaked materials are then removed and thrown out. The cleanup professionals continue the drying process by extracting standing water and using industrial fans and dehumidifiers to dry the area. It needs to be dried as quickly as possible to avoid more damage such as mold growth and wood rot.

5. Cleaning and Disinfection
Powerful cleaning products remove soot from all surfaces. The professionals use ozone generators and other industrial equipment to remove smoke odor from all areas with smoke damage. The fire damage cleanup specialists then thoroughly clean and disinfect the entire home and the remaining contents.

6. Rebuilding
Finally, the final reconstruction begins returning the home to its original condition. Structural damage is rebuilt. Then, new drywall and flooring is installed.
If your home in Providence, RI, goes up in flames, the damage cleaning and fire restoration process will need to begin as soon as possible. Taking quick action helps avoid additional damage to the property.

How To Successfully Restore Wet Documents

7/31/2022 (Permalink)

Wet documents SERVPRO uses the latest in document drying technology

Losing important documents in a flood or fire can be devastating for your business in Elmwood, RI. You can rebuild the structure and replace the furniture, but what about irreplaceable papers and photographs? They may not be a total loss if the water restoration company you select has document restoration services available.

What Documents Can Be Restored?

Contracts, manuscripts, and other files
Books and magazines
Blueprints and maps
Photographs, films, and negatives

Finding an experienced technician as quickly as possible is the key to successful document restoration. Insurance companies choose SERVPRO more often than any other restoration service because of the advanced technology and knowledgeable professionals available all over the country. Each office is locally owned and operated, but has corporate resources available.

How Are the Documents Restored?
SERVPRO uses the latest in document drying technology. The vacuum freeze-drying technique is the same process used by the Library of Congress to dry historical papers and other valuable documents. In fact, this drying method is the only process that the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) has approved for restoring wet documents.
Documents that have been exposed to flood water or sewage will likely contain harmful chemicals and bacteria. Technology using a gamma irradiation process will sterilize the documents so that they are safe to handle.
You can also rest assured that your sensitive documents will remain confidential. SERVPRO employs HIPAA-certified technicians, who are under constant supervision.

What About Digital Services?
There is no better time to have your important papers converted to digital format than before a disaster strikes. In a flood or fire, your records will be saved. You can also free up valuable storage space by keeping digital files.
The quicker you send out your irreplaceable documents for document restoration after a flood or other disaster, the faster you will be able to get your business back on track.

Does Your Business Need a Flood Cut?

7/23/2022 (Permalink)

Flood cuts performed on a drywall and a dehumidifier placed on room affected Flood cut in a Providence, RI business

Flooding at your Providence, RI, business may require intensive restoration efforts in order to get back to pre-flood condition. In addition to drying out the area, replacing carpet and other remediation tasks, a flood cut may need to be made in order to fully address the water damage.

What Is A Flood Cut?

A flood cut is simply the removal of drywall approximately one foot above the visible waterline. This is done because water tends to wick upward through the wall.

When Are Flood Cuts Necessary?

Flood cuts are necessary in many situations, including the following:

  • Gray water (mildly contaminated) floods
  • Black water (heavily contaminated) floods
  • Clean water floods that affect insulated walls

Gray and black waters require a flood cut because they are contaminated. The restoration company must tear out the drywall in the flooded area to ensure your business is safe and clean for you, your employees, and clients. Clean water floods, though not contaminated, still permanently damage insulation. Because the insulation cannot be dried, it must be removed to prevent mold growth.

Are There Any Alternatives to Flood Cuts?

When dealing with contaminated water or damaged insulation, a flood cut is the best way to prevent mold growth and further contamination. However, in the case of clean water flooding that does not affect any insulated walls, other drying options may be available. One such method is the use of regenerative blowers. Holes are drilled in the wall and hoses are inserted to allow dry air to flow freely.

How Soon Should a Flood Cut Be Made?

Flood damage should be addressed as soon as possible because moisture encourages mold growth. Even in cases of clean water and non-insulated drywall, it is still important to act quickly because clean water can become contaminated and turn into gray water within a day or two.
Regardless of the type of flooding your business experiences, a professional restoration team can take care of the water damage and any mold growth quickly and safely.

When Does Your Insurance Cover a Flood?

7/18/2022 (Permalink)

Flood insurance form on a table with a book. Consider purchasing flood insurance

When Is a Flood Covered by Your Insurance?

Experiencing a disaster at home can be devastating. Flooding is one of the most common and damaging incidents that Elmwood, RI, homeowners encounter. There are some cases where your homeowner's insurance will cover the damage of a basement flood and other water damage. Other situations require that you turn to secondary flood insurance to file a claim.

What Your Homeowner's Insurance Covers
You purchase homeowner's insurance to help you when accidental damage occurs in your home and on your property. This applies to a flooded house as well. If there is sudden, unintentional water damage, your insurance should step in and help with repair and replacement costs. Some examples include:

  • A broken pipe
  • A failed appliance such as a dishwasher or water heater that expels water onto the floor or walls
  • A leaky roof that lets rainwater into the attic

What Your Homeowner's Policy Doesn't Cover

Traditional insurance coverage won't take care of all your water damage. If you fail to properly maintain appliances and other systems in the home, the insurance company won't likely pay to repair the damage. If you intentionally cause flooding on your property, it will void any insurance protection, and you may face legal issues. Also, your policy won't cover the cause of the water damage, just the results. For instance, if your refrigerator breaks and leaks water down the wall, ruining the drywall, your insurance will pay to replace the wall but not the fridge.

When To Get Flood Insurance

You can get supplemental flood coverage to take care of water damage from issues such as sewer backups or main water line breaks. If you live in an area where a basement flood would be common because of severe storms or overflowing rivers or canals, you should consider purchasing flood insurance.
When you've got a basement flood or other damage, it's nice to know you can call a professional flood remediation team. You should also be prepared with adequate insurance to help cover the cleanup and replacement costs.

The Benefits of Claims Inventory Services

6/28/2022 (Permalink)

Tablet and cel phone. Clients can always view the updates on their online accounts.

SERVPRO's Claims Inventory Service

When a commercial property is damaged by fire, flooding or mold, the expenses for mitigation and restoration can really add up. Business owners need a reliable way to keep track not only of structural elements that are compromised but also of items inside their buildings that need repair. SERVPRO's claims inventory service makes the process of filing an insurance claim for damaged property easier for your clients in Providence, RI.

Visual Proof of Damage
When SERVPRO technicians arrive at the building, they start with a thorough assessment of the damage to the structure. They may take several pictures of the affected area:

  • Saturated drywall
  • Collapsed ceiling tiles
  • Damaged flooring
  • Compromised items

This assessment gives business owners and their insurance providers a clear picture of the work that needs to be done. They can access the information at any time in order to file accurate claims.

Itemized List for Insurance Claim
Before any ruined building materials can be removed, the certified damage mitigation experts must take out furniture, equipment and other items that were in the path of destruction. Once these things are removed, they are inspected to see if they're salvageable.
An insurance agent may see a distinction between repair and replacement costs for the separate lists on the claim. Clients can always view the updates on their online accounts. Technicians update the report throughout the process to verify the work that has been completed or add new steps that have to be taken. Because the information is revised whenever there is a change, the itemized list serves as an accurate backup to the claim filed with the provider.
No matter why your clients need mitigation services, the claims inventory system helps them keep track of what's going on with their property. It makes filing an insurance claim as simple as possible.

How FEMA Can Help After a Flood

6/20/2022 (Permalink)

Fema.gov Disasters USA Government home page under magnifying glass. Organizations like FEMA are there to help with grants that may not cover everything but still make recovery easier.

FEMA's Role in Flood Recovery

When a natural flood event happens in Elmwood, RI, even uninsured homeowners don’t have to weather the financial burden and recovery. A FEMA grant provides accepted households up to $36,000 for disaster relief. While this may not cover all the associated costs, it does provide relief. Before filing for a grant, it’s important to understand what the agency assists with.

Flooding Damage Relief
After an assessment of the damage is completed and a certified water damage restoration company has been secured to develop a restoration plan, you can expect the grant to help cover the costs for the following:

Roofs and Ceilings: If the storm wreaked havoc on the roof, these funds may be used to repair or replace affected materials.
Floors: While it may not cover replacement costs for new carpet or tiles, it will assist with any subfloor damage.
Windows: Broken windows related to the storm are included.
Property: The amount of property that is covered varies, but it may include the repair or replacement of HVAC systems, essential appliances and utilities.

Other Assistance
FEMA assistance comes in other forms besides ensuring your home is a safe and secure environment. Along with assisting with temporary relocation and related expenses, it may also help with child care and medical expense as well as replacing belongings, including:

  • Clothing
  • Job-required gear
  • Educational tools
  • Storage expenses
  • Essential vehicle damage
  • Disaster-related purchases

While these grants help with many different facets of the disaster, it’s also important to know that they will only be provided for up to 18 months. Typically, a household will receive around $5,000 a month to get their lives back on track.
Weathering a natural disaster comes with chaos and significant stress. While everything may seem hopeless, organizations like FEMA are there to help with grants that may not cover everything but still make recovery easier.