In Michigan, Dreams Can Come True

January 26, 2012

The Detroit Tigers just got another big bat in the lineup by signing Prince Fielder today. The slugger signed a 9-year contract worth $214 million. His incentives include $1 million if he is named the league’s Most Valuable Player. He also gets his own hotel suite when the Tigers are on the road. It’s no wonder he said “dreams come true” at a press conference on Thursday at Comerica Park.

Now Tigers fans will look for Fielder to help propel the team to its first World Series win since Ronald Reagan was nearing the end of his first term in the White House. For those of you too young to remember the Tigers in 1984, it was a marvelous season. Google it sometime.

Those of you who cheered on the team in ‘84 may recall relief pitcher Willie Hernandez earned both the Cy Young Award and the A.L. MVP award. Yet we know that baseball is truly a team sport and winning a championship takes a whole team of players dedicated to making it happen. One “Prince” can be a tremendous boost though, but the responsibility lies with every player at the plate, on the mound, and on the field every single game.

In the restoration business, we work with the same philosophy in mind. A winning team is made up of more than one person. It takes a commitment from each one of our “players” to successfully complete a project, from the first response a client gets by phone to ensuring the work meets expectations.

We’re dedicated to making 2012 a successful year, serving property owners here in Michigan and beyond to the best of our ability. If you know someone who wants a winning team on the job of water mitigation, sewage clean-up, fire and smoke damage restoration, and much more, let them know about Aaron’s Restoration. We’re available at 888-442-2766 round-the-clock. Even Prince Fielder can’t say that.

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Misery and Michigan Frostbite

January 21, 2012

It doesn’t matter how cold it gets in Michigan in January, there is always someone walking around ill-prepared for the elements. You might see her on the street with a light jacket when it’s 25 degrees out. You might see him shoveling his sidewalk without gloves. Or you might be that person we’re talking about.

At Aaron’s Restoration, we deal in disasters all the time: storms, fires, floods, etc.. But our business involves working around things that can be replaced. It may be flooring damaged by flooding, a dryer burned in a fire or a wall lost to a tree felled by a storm. But human fingers and toes aren’t easily replaced when amputation becomes necessary after frostbite.

It may seem unusual for a restoration company to be discussing a medical condition. After all, you won’t find a doctor blogging about mold remediation. But we understand the need to be comfortable in your home, your sanctuary. It’s difficult to do that when your health and well-being are affected by the impact of frigid weather on your body. Even just adding a hat that covers your ears can prevent you from losing 40% of your body heat when you’re out in these chilly conditions.

Working outside for any period of time makes it imperative to dress properly for the weather. As you’ve certainly felt recently, our temperatures have stayed below freezing quite often, and even a gentle breeze at those temperatures can produce a fierce wind chill. That’s why we make sure our crews are prepared for the weather each and every time they respond to a call.

A little bit of extra time getting dressed for our cold Michigan winter days and nights is always well worth it. It may only take an extra sixty seconds to find those thick gloves and put on a warm hat. Easy enough, right? You want to be prepared for an emergency, not become one.

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Warm Those Pipes, Michigan

January 19, 2012

As January rolls along, temperatures in Michigan are dropping even further. In fact, as daytime highs fail to climb out of the 20s, you’ll miss those warmer winter days when our highs topped 40 degrees. But while you’re dressing in layers outside or covered with an extra blanket inside, your water pipes may not feel so warm and toasty.

There are numerous ways to protect those pipes. For example, you could buy a product to insulate them. Some people recommend leaving a tap on to allow water to steadily flow through the pipes, reducing the risk of a freeze. Yet whatever option suits you best, it’s wise to address the potential problem before it becomes an actual problem.

The extended freeze makes a pipe burst more likely because the daytime temperatures don’t warm up enough to make a difference. And there is a huge difference between a few degrees. 29 is not 33.

A few days of freezing temperatures coinciding with a weekend can lead to a disaster if no one is home to tend to the pipes. A wise Michigan resident who is out of town during these particularly cold spells will contact someone to check on the house in his or her absence. An early observation of a developing problem can become a significant game changer with the right intervention.

A developing problem that gets neglected during a deep freeze can lead to widespread damage, depending on where the pipe burst occurs. It may affect flooring, furniture, walls and much more. By the time the disaster is discovered, the expense of clean-up could have doubled, tripled or worse.

Your best bet is to expect the best but prepare for the worst. That’s pretty much a smart policy to adopt in any area of your life, especially if you’re new to Michigan. Winters around here can pack a pretty cold punch.

Aaron’s Restoration is ready to handle disasters round-the-clock, during even the most chilly conditions. Whether it’s water mitigation, mold remediation, fire and smoke clean-up or virtually any other home disaster, the team of specialists at Aaron’s Restoration can return a home to its original condition quickly and expertly. Visit today or call 888-442-2766.

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How Did Aaron’s Restoration Help You in 2011?

December 28, 2011

You might have seen Aaron’s Restoration in your neighborhood recently or perhaps you passed us on the road. Maybe we worked on a home of someone close to you and that’s how you first heard our name. But for those individuals whose homes we transformed after a disaster, we thank you for trusting our experience and expertise in your time of need.

We covered a lot of miles over the last 12 months. We provided emergency services to numerous property owners here in Michigan and beyond. We handled mold problems, water damage, fire and smoke damage, sewage back-up, and much more. We saw many rooms and homes at their worst, and did our best to expertly restore them and their contents.

If you were one of the property owners in Michigan and beyond who turned to Aaron’s Restoration for residential or commercial services in 2011, we want to hear from you. Last time, you likely called our toll-free number, 888-442-2766, to contact us. But this time, we invite you to share with us in writing how our team made a difference in your life in the past year. Whether it was a big project or a little one, we welcome any stories or comments about the ways we enhanced your home.

Testimonials, like the one you can provide, allow potential customers to make more informed decisions and discover the benefits of turning to a restoration company with a proven track record. So think about your experience. Was it your first time using a restoration company? What impressed you most? What pleasantly surprised you during the process?

We made it easy for you to share stories and comments with us. Simply leave a reply below this blog. It doesn’t need to be long. Just make it personal and meaningful.

Thank you for your patronage in 2011, and we wish you a prosperous year in 2012.

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Water Damage Threats Inside a Michigan Home

September 28, 2011

With flooding stories in the national news a lot lately, it’s easy to forget some other common ways a home can sustain water damage. As water remediation experts for Michigan and Ohio, Aaron’s Restoration is often called upon to remedy problems related to flooding or excessive water in a home. Many of the clean-up jobs involve a source that a homeowner did not anticipate could lead to serious trouble: an appliance.

Three appliances in particular pose a serious threat to your home, if not properly maintained. One is a water heater. Another is your dishwasher. The third is your washing machine. You may notice a dishwasher leak quickly but the other two appliances tend to be placed in a basement or a closet so they’re not visible most of the time. This means a problem could develop and not get noticed for hours or even days.

Before you need to call for service of any of these appliances, you can get familiar with recommended maintenance and troubleshooting steps listed in the owner’s manual or online. For example, a washing machine leak may be related to the hoses or connections, unless the leak is actually drain water from a backed-up standpipe. As a safety measure, install “no-burst” stainless steel mesh hoses to avoid water damage caused by bursting supply hoses. You can also install lever-type, shut-off valves that allow you to turn off the hot and cold water in between washing machine uses or anytime no one will be home for days or weeks at a time.

Your water heater needs some special attention, too. Drain it occasionally and remove any collected sediment. Make this a routine part of your home maintenance, and get immediate attention for any suspected problem that requires professional service.

Another essential step in reducing the risk of water damage is learning how to shut off water at the main or at the appliance. Once you’re comfortable with the preventative measures and ongoing maintenance duties, there is still more you can do to minimize the risk of unwanted water from your appliances. Turning your attention to your home’s drainage system can let you know if it has the capacity to handle high volumes of water moving quickly. If not, it may be time for an upgrade, especially if you live in an older home.

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After the Flood: Mold Prevention Strategies

September 10, 2011

Late summer has been an active time for flooding this year. Whether it’s caused by tropical weather or regular storms, the flooding has left thousands of U.S. homes under water, at least temporarily, and forced homeowners to seek help for clean-up. In many instances, mold remediation has been or will be necessary.

As flood waters tend to drive families out, the return home is a time to act quickly to reduce the threat of mold growth. Cleaning and drying out the home is the first goal, and can be expedited by opening windows and doors and using fans and dehumidifiers. Removing water-soaked items (carpets, wallpaper, ceiling tiles) and storing them outside the home—pending your insurance claim—is a sensible next step. Items should be sorted by what will be discarded and what may be cleaned or repaired. Cleaning wet items and surfaces with detergent is another part of the initial response to prevent mold growth. Also, cleaning and disinfecting the dishwasher, and other appliances, before use is recommended.

Homeowners will want to closely examine all areas of the house for signs of mold growth—even if flooding did not occur. Homes with roof or pipe leaks and homes with excessive humidity are also susceptible to mold growth. The visual inspection should include ceiling tiles, cardboard and paper. But, keep in mind, mold contamination is not always easy to see and could be contained within interior walls and ceilings.

When working in areas potentially contaminated by mold, use of protective equipment is recommended. Protection for eyes and skin includes gloves which prevent contact with both mold and cleaning solutions. Protective clothing can help prevent the spread of mold from contaminated areas to street clothes. Respiratory protection, such as a dust mask, can help prevent a homeowner from inhaling large particles but may not be adequate for some hazardous airborne particles.

The potential health risks and complex nature of mold remediation are among the primary reasons to hire a licensed contractor to handle the the work. An experienced water damage expert will understand how to safely and comprehensively evaluate and clean a home, from its floorboards to its heating, cooling and ventilation systems. A company that also offers contents restoration will be able to advise you about whether to salvage mold-contaminated items, such as clothes or leather goods, or discard them.

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Irene’s Messy Lessons

August 30, 2011

It’s going to be a challenging few weeks for many residents along the East Coast and throughout the Northeast after Hurricane Irene dumped heavy rain for hours and left some areas completely underwater. In some places, entire towns are cut off due to flood waters. Recovery is also being delayed by widespread power outages.

If there a lesson for those of us observing at a distance, it’s the realization that disasters of this magnitude can happen anywhere. The devastation from Irene was not limited to low-lying coastal areas. Mountain towns in New York and New England also experienced significant damage to homes, businesses and property. At least one historic bridge was swept away by fast-moving water.

Many homeowners with flooded basements and flooded ground-level rooms may be caught off guard when they discover insurance policies don’t cover flooding. That can lead to a considerable financial burden. Common estimates say an inch of standing water can cause more than $10,000 in damage. Before Irene arrived, at least one Vermont town was already planning to participate in the National Flood Insurance Program, which would give its residents access to federally-backed flood insurance.

Expense aside, the process of returning homes affected by Irene back to their original condition will be slowed by several other variables, including the demand for restoration work and the lack of access to many homes throughout that region. Also, not only is water mitigation essential, mold remediation may be necessary before a house is safe to live in again. Months could pass before a majority of those damaged homes will be completely repaired and restored.

While Michigan was safely removed from the impact of the hurricane, we can learn a great deal from the cleanup and recovery process happening in states such as North Carolina, New York and Connecticut. Those messy lessons will help better prepare us when the next disaster strikes here. In the meantime, we can lend our support and encouragement to those people whose lives have been disrupted by one of the ultimate forces of nature.

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