In the Billings, Montana area, temperatures often drop below zero, especially in the winter time. Whether you live in the Heights, Downtown, or the West End, you will experience these freezing conditions. If you experience water damage caused by a frozen pipe, one of the first things you need to do is find the source of the damage. Know where your water shut-off valve is. This can save you lots of grief if you are ever in a situation that requires a quick turn-off. If you do not know where the water is coming from, then it is best to start on damage control. TIP: don’t forget to snap a few photos. If you have belonging that are affected, remove them to avoid further damage. This also applies to items that haven’t been touched by the water yet. Next, you need to begin removing the standing water. Depending on the amount of damage, you may need to use towels or even a sump pump. If you have a wet vacuum, use it. You may have to also pull off baseboards in order to prevent further damage to them as well. The next step would be to dry out the area with fans. No matter how severe (or not severe) water damage seems to be, you should always consult a professional, like Alpha Omega Disaster Restoration, to complete an inspection (which is often free) to make sure everything is taken care of.

Have questions about water damage concerns? Give us a call at 406-628-0178, or email mail@alphaomegapros.com

We are very excited to announce this scholarship opportunity to the class of 2017! Two scholarships in the amount of $500.00 will be awarded to business-minded graduating seniors. Please see the attached PDF listed on the bottom of the page to download the application.

A brief overview of the criteria includes:

  1. Be a high school senior attending any of the following schools:

Absarokee                                              Columbus                                Shepherd

Belfry                                                      Fromberg

Billings Central                                     Hardin

Billings Christian                                  Huntley Project

Billings Senior                                       Joliet

Billings Skyview                                    Laurel

Billings West                                          Park City

Bridger                                                    Red Lodge

Broadview                                              Roberts

2. Intend to pursue a degree in Business-related studies

3. Intend to start their own small business

4. Write an essay no more than 1,000 words outlining the business they intend to develop, as well as who/what inspired them to choose that particular venture

5. Complete the attached application (See PDF)

6. Submit 2 letters of recommendation from adults who know you (adults may not be related to you)

7. Submit a current photo

The deadline to apply is April 1st. Please submit scholarships either by:

Email (mail@alphaomegapros.com)

Direct mail (PO Box 1108, Laurel, MT 59044)

Your high school counselor

Good luck! We look forward to your submissions.

Alpha Omega Disaster Restoration Scholarship

Willy & Julie Johnson

ao-group-7-webIt’s Thanksgiving Day! As 2016 draws to a close and we dive into the Holiday season, it is always a great time to pause and look back on the past year. We are so thankful for all the people who have impacted this company, including our wonderful customers, employees, referral sources, and business partners. We could not do it without you all! This year, we are especially thankful for relationships that continue to grow, as well as new relationships that are formed daily. Community is very important to us, and we are extremely grateful to be a part of the Laurel and Billings community. Being able to serve our customers and help rebuild lives is a fantastic perk of our job, and we take the responsibility very seriously. Thank you for trusting us with your homes, businesses, and property.

We hope that everyone has a safe and wonderful Thanksgiving, filled with great food, company, and lots of laughter!

Your local disaster restoration team,

Alpha Omega Disaster Restoration

 

snow roof risks IBHS, disaster restoration billings mt

Water damage to Billings area homes from winter weather can cause significant damage. Even small splits in pipes can create thousands of dollars in damage.

Do you have a winter maintenance checklist?

Following are some practical tips to protect your property before the snow flies.

Preventing Ice Dams

Ice dams are caused when warm air from the attic heats the roof causing snow to melt and then collect on colder unheated eaves. If these dams aren’t removed, water can be forced up the roof, underneath the shingles, where it can cause serious damage.

The best way to prevent an ice dam is to clean, inspect and repair gutters and downspouts around your home. But here are a couple of additional recommendations from The Insurance Institute for Business and Home Safety (IBHS).

  1. Properly insulate your attic. Be sure the floor is airtight in order to keep the heat inside your home from being transferred into the attic. Check openings for exhaust pipes, light fixtures, fireplaces. Any openings should be properly sealed, but also make sure vents are not blocked.
  2. Ventilate your attic appropriately. There’s variety of methods for this, such as installing ridge or eave vents.

Allowing cold air in and preventing warm air transfers from below will help prevent, or at least minimize the size of, an ice dam.

Preventing Frozen Pipes

Frozen pipes are one of the leading causes of winter water damage to Billings area homes. The average claim for burst pipes is $10,000 (source Nationwide insurance).

Insulate pipes that are exposed to cold air, making sure that all of the pipe is protected — don’t leave elbows and corners exposed.

Use a water heater blanket to insulate the hot water heater.

If you plan to be away from home for an extended period of time, set the interior temperature high enough to keep pipes warm. Here are some additional tips for reducing the Risk of Water Damage.

Preventing Frozen Pipes

 

Preventing Roof Collapse

Although significant snowfall accumulation is not common in the Richmond metro region, it can and does happen.

Most residential roofs are designed to handle 20 pounds of snow per square foot of space. Following are some guidelines to help determine the weight of snow.

Fresh snow – 10-12 inches of fresh snow is the equivalent of 1 inch of water, or about 5 pounds per square foot of roof space. Assuming no structural damage or decay, your roof should be able to support about 4 feet of new snow.

Packed snow – 3-5 inches is equal to 1 inch of water or approximately 5 pounds per square foot of roof space, therefore any more that 2 feet of old snow may exceed the load capacity of the roof.

Ice – 1 inch of ice equals 1 foot of fresh snow. So 4 inches of ice would be the equivalent of 4 feet of fresh snow.

Here is a handy chart for reference, provided by IBHS:

snow roof risks IBHS, disaster restoration billings mt

 

Following these basic procedures can greatly reduce the risk of damage; however, should you discover water, or any other, damage quick action is imperative. We have trained and certified technicians on call 24/7 ready to respond to emergencies, find out more here.

Mold Remediation Service Billings MT
Mold Removal Services Billings MT

We provide certified mold remediation for Billings, MT area homes.

Mold becomes a problem inside a home or business when there’s excessive humidity or moisture for an extended period of time. The problem can originate from sudden water releases, like a burst pipe or large spill that goes untreated, or from a chronic condition, such as a leaking roof or plumbing. Even high humidity or warm, moist air condensing on cool surfaces can trigger mold problems.

We recommend several ways prevent mold in homes:

  • No moisture, no mold! Moisture and standing water allow mold to grow. Keep the surfaces and materials dry.
  • Prevention is key. Avoid standing water around house plants as it can lead to mold.
  • Dry carpets immediately. A wet carpet can lead to mold in as little as 24‐48 hours.
  • Use the exhaust fan in the bathroom; it is designed to eliminate moisture.
  • For extensive mold problems, give us a call.

Mold can grow almost anywhere in a home or business. If there is visible growth on painted wall surfaces, property owners should be concerned about what may be growing on the wall’s opposite side. The environment inside the walls of a house often differs drastically from the outside and could create a perfect haven for mold.

If the wall remains wet for a prolonged period, it’s almost guaranteed that the mold growth on the back side will be worse than on the front. At that point, enlist a qualified, certified professional to properly contain the work space and remove moldy materials, followed by cleaning of salvageable framing.

Professionals certified by IICRC have the training and experience to properly:

  • Evaluate mold growth
  • Remove contamination
  • Return the property to its original condition

Have questions about mold concerns? Give us a call at 406-628-0178, or email mail@alphaomegapros.com

Potential for Wildfire Damage Near Billings and Surrounding Areas Looms Large

According to Mike Rawlins of KXLH Channel 9 concern is growing for a bad fire season under the Big Sky.
But it may not turn out to be as bad as we may think.

When we look at the potential for wildfires, there are several factors we must look at. Here are just a few: mountain snow pack, amount of precipitation, residual soil moisture, summer heat waves and dry thunderstorms.

Some of those are easy to analyze and determine whether or not they’ll aid us or hurt us when it comes to fire season. For example, we know what the soil moisture is like right now and it’s pretty good.

Montana saw ample amounts of rain and snow in 2014, setting us up pretty good for 2015.

It’s spring, so we should see the land turning greener as plants and trees bloom. Most of central Montana is green — great news, meaning we are above average. And this is thanks in part to just how wet it was early on this past winter.

But, western Montana and southwest Montana aren’t looking all that great. A considerable lack of moisture is to blame for the below average greenness in these areas.

So, for north central Montana, things aren’t all that bad as of right now. I am concerned with another factor that could become a huge player later this year… mountain snow pack.

Read the rest of the article here.

Alpha Omega Disaster Restoration 5 Star Review Ernie K

Alpha Omega Disaster Restoration 5-Star Review Toby S.

Alpha Omega Disaster Restoration Reviews

kitche fires need smoke damage cleanup

Even small fires may require smoke damage cleanup in other areas of the home.

Accidents, like a kitchen flare-up, can cause smoke damage in Billings, MT homes. If left to linger for any length of time, it can seep into walls, carpeting, and upholstery, leaving a gritty, smelly mess. Not fun!

Here are some DIY smoke damage cleaning tips from Houselogic for those small accidents that don’t require a professional cleanup crew:

Ventilate and vacuum

    • Ventilate the house as quickly as possible to mitigate smoke damage.
    • Throw open doors and windows.
    • Turn off HVAC systems to avoid further spreading smoke.
    • Rent a few industrial fans ($25 for 24 hours) and angle them towards the windows and doors. This will help suck smoky air from the home.
    • Vacuum soot and ash with a shop vac ($30). Hold the nozzle just above the soot and suck it up—pushing down could cause stains.

Deep clean

    • Throw away heavily damaged or heavily smoked items, and start cleaning the house top to bottom.
    • Wipe down all hard surfaces—countertops, appliances, and furniture—with a cleaning cloth.
    • Wash walls and ceilings. Wipe soot away with a dry sponge. Rub away stubborn stains with a vinegar spray. If you need more muscle, use paint thinner (open windows for ventilation).
    • Wash or clean all household items, even light bulbs. Remove bulbs to wash and dry thoroughly, then reinstall.
    • Wash or dry-clean all clothing and drapes.
    • Deodorize carpets and window coverings with odor counteractants such as OdorX 9-D-9 ($68 for 1 gallon) or No Smoke Odor Counteractant ($59 for 32 ounces).
    • Throw away all food that was not sealed in airtight containers.
    • Replace all HVAC filters.

When you need professional smoke damage cleanup

If your home has had extensive smoke damage, before trying to tackle it on your own, check with a professional disaster restoration team. A certified team can often save structures and belongings that you may think are gone for good. Most companies provide free estimates, so it’s worth making a phone call to save as many of your possessions as possible.