Contact Paul Davis Restoration Portland OR

News & Blogs

How to Remove Smoke Damage from Your Walls

burnt-homeIf your home was recently affected by fire, we offer our deepest sympathies. We understand how stressful a home fire can be, how frightening, and how much damage can be done in such a short amount of time.

Just as difficult as coping with the emotional stress of a fire is cleaning up the damage when the smoke has cleared. Depending on the size and duration of the blaze, you may have damage to furniture, clothing, and the structure of your home. However, one of the major issues that arises for families who have experienced home fires is smoke damage. The charring residue that sits on your walls can be difficult to remove, a painful memory of a stressful incident that will affect your property value and the ambience of your home until removed.

Paul Davis Restoration’s team is highly skilled at removing smoke damage from your walls. It’s one of the many services we are proud to provide. However, if you’re a strong-minded DIY-type, we respect that and want to advise you as best we can. Here are a few insider tips for removing smoke residue and charring from your walls, for good.

Read more: How to Remove Smoke Damage from Your Walls

How to Stay Safe While You Wait for Lead Abatement

While preventing lead poisoning is now a major concern for parents, homeowners, and medical professionals, this was not always the case. Prior to the 1980s, paint, toys, and even clothing contained this toxin, which is dangerous to the human body, particularly for children.

If you have tested your home and discovered high levels of lead, or lead has shown up in your or a loved one’s blood test, you may begin to panic. However, while lead is a danger to you and your family, there’s no need to panic. There are several steps you can take immediately to ensure your family’s well-being.

First, contact a lead abatement professional immediately. You do not have to tolerate a toxic living environment. Abatement professionals are trained in the removal of lead-based materials, including paint and dust, and can make your home safe.

However, if you’ve already called a highly-skilled team and are waiting for abatement day, there are a few other actions that will help prevent contamination and subsequent health concerns:

Read more: How to Stay Safe While You Wait for Lead Abatement

Create a Home Inventory In Case of Emergency

listIf your possessions were suddenly destroyed in a fire or flood, would you be able to itemize a list of them to submit for insurance compensation?

While it may sound morbid, putting together an itemized list of all of your possessions, ready in case you need to submit for an insurance claim, can serve you in the event of disaster. Having a list ready can help you get a settlement faster, confirm your losses when filing your income tax return, and guide future insurance purchase decisions. While losing your home to a sudden crisis is never pleasant to imagine, preparing for the worst can greatly reduce your stress in the moment.

Read more: Create a Home Inventory In Case of Emergency

Design Flaws in Your Home and How to Fix Em': Part 2

bathroom-hallwayIf you love your home, you may not want to take an honest look at some of the inherent flaws in its design, including those we mentioned in Part 1. However, if you’re going to live in the most comfortable and productive way possible, you need to make sure your space supports your lifestyle. That’s where Paul Davis comes in. We are happy to work with you on home remodeling projects that, quite simply, make your space better. And there’s nothing more rewarding than that.

Do any of these design flaws sound familiar?

Read more: Design Flaws in Your Home and How to Fix Em': Part 2

Is My House Well-Ventilated?

open-windowMoisture in your home can create frustrating issues with mold and mildew that can affect and even destroy furniture and carpeting, beloved soft toys, and foam ceilings or walls. Moisture damage in wood or home insulation can undermine the integrity of your home’s structure, affecting everything from your roofing to foundation. Finally, deteriorating surfaces can have an insidious, unpleasant odor that overtakes a room and becomes difficult to extricate.

Proper ventilation is essential to preventing the damaging spread of mold and mildew in your home. In addition, air circulation helps to keep your home warm and dry in the winter and cool and pleasant in the summer. Dehumidifiers provide a temporary fix for issues of condensation and basement flooding. However, rather than targeting the source of the problem, they merely attack the symptoms. If you want to actively reduce the effects of moisture buildup in your home, proper ventilation is one very effective method.

So how do you properly ventilate your home?

Read more: Is My House Well-Ventilated?

Should I Buy An Old House?

old-world-homePurchasing an old home is one way to invest in a charming, romantic space that carries with it a blend of history and mystery.  However, anyone who has ever invested in an older home can tell you that these homes come with character and repairs, both in spades. Purchasing a structure that has survived years of weather changes, families moving in and out, repairs, remodeling, and maybe even periods of deterioration carries with it both responsibility and reward.

The following guide can help you decide whether the pros outweigh the cons of investing in an older home:

Con: Maintenance Issues

Simply put, old homes may be out of compliance with local residential coding or require more maintenance than the exterior reveals. Outdated heating systems and inefficient plumbing don’t just make homes unsafe or uncomfortable to live in but may violate local codes, leading to fines and further deterioration. Before purchase, be sure to both examine the property yourself and have a property inspector review your heating, wiring, plumbing, and air conditioning to make sure that they are updated and safe. In addition, be sure chimneys are aligned and windows are secure and draft-proofed. Homes built in the 50s and 60s may have ceilings made of asbestos, which could require abatement to free your home of dangerous toxins.

Read more: Should I Buy An Old House?

Design Flaws in Your Home and How to Fix Em': Part 1

poor-storage-spaceAs time goes by, the size of your family and what you need in a home can change. You may begin to notice issues with your home, design flaws you may have missed upon purchase. These flaws may include not enough or too much space, awkwardly built rooms, or other problems that suddenly matter when you can’t fit your favorite piece of furniture in a particular corner, or don’t have room to store all of your fishing gear.

At Paul Davis, we wear many hats and give 100% in each role, from restoration specialist to abatement professional. When we put on our remodeling cap, we’re ready and able to help you troubleshoot building or design flaws, so you can reside in the home of your dreams.

If your home has the following flaws, contact us today to discuss your remodeling options!

Read more: Design Flaws in Your Home and How to Fix Em': Part 1

Types of Wood Finishes

wood-finishesWhether you are remodeling your home, treating your floors, or refurbishing an old dresser, wood looks more beautiful and well-cared-for when you apply a finish. Finishes also help to preserve your wood and reduce the appearance of scratches and natural imperfections.

Wood finishes come in a variety of types, so it can be difficult to choose one. The following are common types of wood finishes and the best choices for different types of projects. Be sure to have some fun with the process and get creative!

Green Finishes

Waxes and natural oils are eco-friendly and look stunning on your wood surfaces. Linseed oil and beeswax are common green finishes, and the lesser-known safflower oil and carnauba wax work equally well. If using an environmentally-friendly finish is important to you, water-based varnishes are just as effective and almost as environmentally sound. To be sure, examine the manufacturer’s label and research the ingredients used. The greenest products are made from 100% natural ingredients.

Read more: Types of Wood Finishes

How to Fire-Proof Your Kitchen

You may not believe it, but there’s a room in your home where surfaces reach scalding temperatures regularly and open flames are left to burn for long periods of time.

It’s called your kitchen.

While cooking is essential to keeping yourself and your family fed, operating ovens and hot or even lit burners (depending on the type of range you use) can result in fatal home fires if you do not exercise proper fire safety and prevention.

What can you do to make your kitchen as safe as possible? Consider the following tips for creating an effective and fire-proof area:

Keep a Fire Extinguisher in the Kitchen

This may seem like a no-brainer, but fires do not put themselves out, and tossing water on them can sometimes fan the flames rather than put them out. Hanging a fire extinguisher in your kitchen can mean the difference between smothering a small pan fire before damage occurs and a billowing home fire that destroys much of what you hold dear. Be sure to read the instructions on your fire extinguisher thoroughly so you know exactly how to use it in the event of danger.

Read more: How to Fire-Proof Your Kitchen