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    How to clean your home after a flood

    • By Website Team Technicians
    • 06 Oct, 2016

    After a thrilling vacation with your family, you can't wait to go home and relax in your own bed. But when you pull into your driveway, you instinctively know something went wrong while you were away.

    The grass squishes under your step, and the basement windows look as though they've been splattered with brown paint. Your heart sinks as you open the door and peek down the stairs. Several centimetres of murky water now cover your basement flooring.

    When your home floods after a burst pipe or a severe storm, you might panic and worry about how you'll recover. But if you act quickly and follow these simple steps, you can minimise damage to your property.

    1. Assess the Damage

    Before you ever pick up a bucket or grab a towel, carefully consider your safety.

    Floods can compromise your home's structural integrity, increasing the likelihood of collapse. Furthermore, any exposed or damaged wires could shock you when you splash in the leftover puddles. And since flood water often brings a host of bacteria, mould and similar debris, you could put your health on the line whenever you inhale.

    If your flooded home looks potentially hazardous or if sewage washed into your home, call in a remediation crew to handle the job for you.

    2. Assemble Your Equipment

    If the flooding looks minor, with only a few small puddles here and there, feel free to handle the clean up on your own. Keep in mind that your job will go more smoothly and more quickly when you have the right equipment on hand, so gather the following materials:

    • Skip bin
    • Face mask
    • Fans
    • Dehumidifiers
    • Sturdy gloves
    • Laundry detergent
    • Bleach, Borax or Vinegar
    • Safety glasses
    • Clean wash water
    • Towels
    • Buckets
    • Torch

    If you have several centimetres of water to remove, you may need more specialised equipment to clean your home. Shop vacuums work well on a small scale, but a sump pump works better during bigger emergencies.

    3. Cut the Power and Remove the Water

    Once you've put on your safety gear and feel ready to tackle the mess, turn off the individual circuits and shut down the main breaker. If the breaker is in your flooded basement and you can't reach the panel safely, call your local power company and ask for an emergency shutoff.

    When electricity no longer poses a threat, use towels, buckets, vacuums and pumps to remove the remaining water in your home. Turn on fans and dehumidifiers to speed the drying process, and open windows to promote air circulation.

    4. Remove Soaked Carpet, Drywall and Damaged Items

    Any items that soak for several hours (or days) could harbour dangerous moulds and bacteria. Carpet and carpet padding, in particular, tend to stay damp long after other materials have dried, so remove them as soon as possible and take them to a cleaning expert or toss them in your skip bin.

    Of course, even the best experts cannot properly clean porous building materials (such as drywall and sheetrock). And if left untreated, mould will grow inside the wall cavities. You may have to cut away damaged drywall and add it to the bin to ensure your family stays healthy.

    Similarly, insulation also takes too long to completely dry, and it often provides a food source for bacteria. So throw any wet or damp insulation into your skip bin as well.

    5. Rinse, Wash and Repeat

    After you've removed and dried larger items, you'll have more space to clean and scrub your home. Gather any smaller fabrics (clothing, bedding and drapery) and wash them in cool water with a powdered detergent to prevent stains from setting. Then, re-launder fabrics in the hottest water available with bleach.

    Next, combine warm water with bleach, borax or vinegar (whatever you have on hand). These common cleaning agents will kill mould and keep mould from releasing spores into the air. Scrub every contaminated surface with the mixture and let it sit for a few minutes to loosen the dirt before wiping it away.

    Once you've cleaned (and possibly re-cleaned) every centimetre of your home, hire a professional to inspect your home for damage and mould growth. If you've followed this step and all the steps previous, your inspector should give you permission to move into your home once more.

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    By Website Team Technicians 06 Oct, 2016

    3 Tips to Fill Your Skip Bin Like a Pro

    When you ordered your skip bin, you likely read over the most basic rules for usage. You know that you should never put car batteries, appliances and cleaning products in your skip bin. You even read a few warnings about not smoking near your bin or keeping children away from your bin.

    But one rule gave you slight pause: do not overfill your bin.

    Understandably, you don’t want to pay extra for trips to empty your skip bin over and over again. So what can you do to save money and maximise your available skip bin space?

    1. Sort Your Rubbish

    As you renovate and clean your home or worksite, you may feel tempted to throw your trash and rubbish into the bin as you work. After all, keeping a clean workspace not only reduces the likelihood of accidents but allows you to complete your work quickly.

    However, when you randomly and sporadically throw your construction materials and other waste into your skip bin, you leave a lot of air pockets that could easily fit smaller debris you want to throw away. Furthermore, you might accidently toss items that you could donate, sell or turn into compost.

    Before you put anything into your skip bin, take a few minutes to sort what you have. Consider selling items in good condition (such as old furniture) or donating working appliances (such as an outdated refrigerator) to your local charity home.

    Although you could put recyclables in your bin, you could save space by adding paper, cardboard and certain plastics in your personal recycling bin and have the city remove that waste for free. Save your hired skip bin space for concrete, tiles, rubble and similar materials.

    2. Pack Like You’re Playing Tetris

    In the game of Tetris, your goal is to take an assortment of pieces and make them fit together in such a way that they don’t go above the top of the screen. Similarly, you need to take your assortment of rubbish and make everything fit together so it doesn’t overfill your bin.

    With both the game and your skip bin, you want to lay pieces that will act as your foundation. If you have any items that sit flat, such as unwanted timber or sheet metal, put them down first. Next, place your bulkier, heavier items, such as concrete and household junk. You can then slide smaller, lighter items in between your heavier items and place any leftover debris on top.

    Additionally, you want to distribute the weight of your skip bin as evenly as possible to reduce the risk of tipping. While you don’t have to create a perfectly balanced load, you should not put all your heavy materials on one side and your light materials on the other.

     3. Break Down Bulky Items

    By their sheer design, some items naturally take up more space than others, despite weighing less. Old tabletops, work benches and garden trimmings, for example, may quickly fill up your skip bin and leave little room for heavier items such as bricks, tiles and plumbing pipes.

    Fortunately, some items will crush easily, giving you plenty of extra room. If possible, remove any legs or arms from damaged furniture and dissemble broken-down appliances. Fill hollow items, such as buckets and tubs, with rubbish, and chop up any especially large branches or timber.

    Do not attempt to crush items with your feet, especially if the rubbish is already in your skip bin. The garbage on top may hide broken glass or shattered timber, and you could severely injure yourself in the process.

    Make the Most of Your Skip Bin

    When you follow these basic loading tips, you can fill every last centimetre of your skip bin without overfilling it. But if you worry that your project may be too big for your skip bin, consider upgrading to a larger size, just in case.

    By Website Team Technicians 06 Oct, 2016

    Whether you spend the duration of a storm snuggled up warm in bed or sitting in a storm shelter, you have to deal with the aftermath once the storm ends. Depending on the type and intensity of the storm, you may have quite the mess on your hands.

    Unfortunately, many homeowners approach these messy yards without really knowing the best way to attack the debris left in the wake of a storm. In this blog, we give you five guidelines to help you clean your yard as safely and efficiently as possible.

    1. Survey the Entire Area

    Before you begin any cleaning effort, walk the perimetre of your property. Take note of any damage to your property, including trees and shrubs. Take pictures of any property damage you may need to reference in an insurance claim.

    Once you know the extent of the mess, come up with a basic cleaning plan. It may help to work on the area you need cleared the most first. For example, your driveway is likely a higher priority than your lawn.

    2. Contact Relevant Professionals

    Once you know what you're working with, contact any experts whose help you need before you change anything on your property. You may need to communicate with any of the following professionals:

    • Gas or electric technician
    • Homeowners association
    • Insurance company representative

    Report any problem areas you noticed to the relevant authorities. Remember not to approach any standing water or downed power lines. Leave these safety hazards for trained professionals.

    3. Decide How to Dispose of Waste

    After you take advantage of any help offered by your municipality, insurer or homeowner's insurance, evaluate the remaining mess. Think about how much waste you see on your property.

    Will you be able to dispose of it through your usual kerbside pickup? If not, decide on another removal method. If you have a truck, you may decide to haul the waste yourself. If you cannot haul the rubbish on your own, consider hiring a skip bin to simplify the cleanup process.

    4. Use Correct Protective Gear

    As you prepare to tackle the debris on your lawn, take precautions against injuries. Make sure that you and anyone who helps you has protective gloves, long pants and sleeves and necessary hand tools.

    If you've enlisted the help of teenagers or children, take a moment to teach proper lifting techniques and tool usage. Additionally, ensure that all workers know to stay away from leaning trees, exposed utility lines and other serious safety threats.

    5. Inspect Your Drainage Systems

    You will likely have many areas to clean during this process. However, you should almost always start with your drainage systems. You need clear gutters, kerbs and storm drains to reduce the risk of further damage to your property.

    Correct drainage eliminates standing water, which makes debris more accessible and diminishes the threat of pests and mould.

    Once you clear your drainage systems of fallen leaves and other debris, work according to area priorities. As you clean up, have your helpers separate organic waste, like tree branches, from other debris, like man made trash. This step can simplify the disposal process.

    If you are unsure about what debris you are responsible for as a homeowner, talk to your homeowners association or municipal representatives. In some cases, an organization may be responsible for helping you clean up broken branches and wind-blown waste.

    RememberThese Tips

    Regardless of whether you clean as part of a team or as a one-man crew, keep the tips listed here in mind. These guidelines can protect you from the rigours of extended cleanup as well as the risk of injury or more property damage.

    By Website Team Technicians 06 Oct, 2016

    When you're in the middle of renovating your home, you feel like the process will never end. There are construction workers in and out of your home all day, and you can't even use your kitchen space.

    Once you see your finished kitchen or bathroom, the hassle will have been worth it. In the meantime, follow these survival tips.

    1. Find a Place to Stay

    You may think you'll feel more comfortable staying in your home during the remodel. But the chaos and confusion of a renovation means you'll probably feel more comfortable staying somewhere else.

    Some people are lucky enough to have family or friends they can stay with. You might also own a condo or caravan you could stay in for a time. If not, the remodel might be the perfect excuse to take a vacation. But don't leave town for too long. You may need to stay nearby to coordinate the renovation with the construction workers.

    If staying at home is your only option, rearrange your living space so you stay out of the construction workers' way. For example, if you're getting your kitchen remodelled, you could move your refrigerator to the garage or the living room.

    You may also need to make changes to your daily routine. If you're getting your bathroom remodelled and the water will be turned off, you might need to shower at the gym or at a friend's house.

    2. Plan Meals

    Without access to all your cooking supplies, you'll need to make different arrangements. To avoid eating fast food every day, try the following:

    • Buy ready-made dinners, like rotisserie chicken
    • Make meals that don't require cooking, such as a salad topped with canned tuna
    • Cook meals in a crockpot or on an electric griddle (no need to use your oven or stove)

    Write down a list of feasible meal ideas and then schedule them on a calendar.

    3. Coordinate Safety Issues With the Project Manager

    During a renovation, you're inviting several strangers into your home. Construction workers must follow certain safety procedures. Even so, there are still a few issues you should discuss with the project manager.

    • Entrances.   Let the project manager know where you'd like the workers to enter and exit. Usually, this point is a door you don't use, such as the side door. The project manager will ask you for keys to this door. Don't give keys to anyone else unless the project manager approves.
    • Smoking Areas.   If you don't want smoke in your home, let the project manager know. He or she will designate a spot away from your home where workers can take smoking breaks.
    • Parking.   Discuss with the project manager where workers can park. They should avoid parking in your driveway if possible. They should also avoid parking near a neighbour's house if you neighbour wouldn't approve.

    Coordinating these issues before the renovation begins can help you prevent unnecessary conflict and stress.

    4. Hire a Rubbish Bin

    You may not realize how much waste a renovation produces. This waste could include:

    • Wood
    • Metal
    • Insulation
    • Cardboard
    • Metal
    • Drywall
    • Brick

    You need a secure place to put all the rubbish. Find a local rubbish bin company that offers regular, timely removal. Ask the project manager whether you or their company is responsible for rubbish bin coordination and cost.

    Determine which size bin you'll need. A one-cubic metre bin will hold about as much rubbish as a flat trailer. If possible, find a rubbish bin with a drop-down ramp, which makes accessing the bin easier.

    The finished product of a home renovation is always exciting, but the waiting period can be difficult. Use these tips to avoid stress during the renovation period.

    By Website Team Technicians 06 Oct, 2016

    With people becoming more interested in becoming environmental-friendly, it's no wonder that recycling and composting have become quite popular. Still, there's plenty left to do to safely dispose of more types of waste.

    In this blog, you'll learn about which basic day-to-day items fall into three categories of waste: recycling, compost and rubbish. As you learn the differences between these types of waste, you'll know how to separate them accordingly.

    When items are properly disposed of they take up less space in landfills and oceans, keeping the earth a cleaner and healthier place to live. Use this guide to help you do your part to contribute to environmental health and make your home as green as possible.  


    The elements that make up compostable items are biodegradable, which means that they can decompose in the natural environment. With the help of microorganisms, each piece of compost breaks down into smaller components that nourish the soil and smaller organisms in the vicinity.

    Because of decomposition, compost helps the earth instead of harming it. The more waste you can remove from your regular rubbish bin, the less space it takes up in a landfill and the more good it will do for the environment.

    Luckily, Australia is making some progress to increase domestic, on-farm and commercial composting. According to EC Sustainable's latest figures, Australia's composting rate has increased in recent years due to public awareness initiatives. You can become a part of this wider movement by placing the following basic items into your personal composting area:

    • Coffee grounds, filters and tea bags
    • Breads and grains
    • Eggshells
    • Grass, tree and hedge clippings
    • Landscaping waste, including weeds and flowers
    • Sawdust and straw
    • Fruits and vegetables
    • Certain paper products, including clean paper cartons and dishes

    Almost any type of food works for composting. Don't compost meats and fats, as they attract vermin. Ash and cigarette butts aren't compostable items, either.

    Keep in mind that composting doesn't require a garden. In fact, some communities even offer composting pickup, so contact your local government for more information.


    Composting normally takes place in individual households as each individual resident has the ability and means to participate. But recycling requires the cooperation of the community to obtain the necessary recycling equipment.

    Luckily, most communities in Australia have some form of recycling resources. To take full advantage of your local recycling opportunities, it's important to know exactly which types of materials are recyclable.

    Recyclable materials include:

    • Metals, including aluminum cans and foil
    • Plastics of various kinds
    • Glass bottles and jars
    • Paper products including envelopes, paperback books, catalogues and loose leaf
    • Polythene products

    Mirrors, dirty paper items and batteries are all good examples of non-recyclables. For example, a used paper milk carton is a good compostable, but not a good recyclable. To obtain more information about your local recycling standards, contact the recycling and waste management providers in your area.


    After you've divided your waste into categories including compost and recycling, whatever is left consists of non-recyclable or non-biodegradable materials. Because remaining items end up in landfills, it's best to eliminate everything you can before regular disposal.

    Not only is dividing your waste good for the environment, but it also helps to lessen waste that could seep into your water supply. Before throwing something into the bin for good, make sure there's no way to reuse or donate it.

    Some specific examples of rubbish include:

    • Broken glass
    • Used hygiene products
    • Diapers
    • Crisp bags

    If you are interested in disposing your rubbish in more environmentally-friendly ways, consult your local waste removal experts. They can tell you about the exact waste disposal guidelines for your area. If you're looking for ways to dispose of large amounts of waste, contact a skip bin provider today.

    By Website Team Technicians 06 Oct, 2016

    Skip bins offer a cost-effective solution for renovation, landscaping and spring cleaning waste. But they also create a lot of temptation for animals in your neighborhood, especially if your waste smells edible.

    Whether you have a long-term skip bin arrangement or just want a skip bin for cleanup after a weekend project, you have to figure out how to keep pests from spreading your rubbish all over the kerb.

    In this blog, we walk you through the basics of keeping pests of all sizes out of your bins.

    Close and Lock the Bin Lid

    It may seem like a simple instruction, but you might be surprised how many bin users forget to close and lock the bin lid every time they use it. Many people assume that they only have to worry about pests at night, but feral cats and dogs often rummage through rubbish in the daylight.

    If your bin doesn't have a lock, use a bungee cord to keep the lid closed or weight the lid with a brick so an animal cannot lift it.

    Comply with Rubbish Guidelines

    Bin hire companies often have guidelines designed to make disposal simple and safe. These guidelines may include restrictions on waste content, including:

    • Biological waste
    • No food waste
    • Only specified permitted chemicals

    Following these three specific restrictions can decrease the appeal of your skip bin to pests since most animals only dig through bins when they think they'll find food there.

    Create an Environment Pests Dislike

    In addition to keeping the bin inaccessible, you can also make it actively unappealing to common pests by sprinkling or spraying strong-smelling substances in the bin's corners. Common choices include:

    • Clean cat litter
    • Cayenne pepper in water
    • Diluted bleach
    • Vinegar
    • Window cleaner

    The efficacy of these measures depends on what kind of pests you have in your area, so don't be surprised if you have to try more than one. Be sure when applying deterrents that they don't have a corrosive effect on your bin, since that will only make it easier for pests to get in.

    Keep Your Bin Clean

    If you have a long-term or permanent bin arrangement, determine if the bin company performs any cleaning. If not, create a routine that keeps your bin from becoming smelly.

    For many users, this routine can consist of simply hosing the bin down after it's emptied. You may also want to invest in a bin liner or use newspaper to line the bottom of the bin. Liners prevent lingering food odours, which can attract vermin even after the source is disposed of.

    If you are allowed to dispose of food waste and other smelly rubbish in your bin, do so on the day of pickup or put the waste in an airtight bag to minimise the smell.

    Place the Bin Away from Fences and Railing

    Your bin's placement can also affect how attractive it seems to animals. Ask your hire company to place the bin in a clear area, away from any structure a clever pest could climb. Avoid any fences or railings in particular.

    Other problem structures include:

    • Above ground pools
    • Garden trellises
    • Sheds

    If you must place the bin near a possible climbing aid, install motion detecting lights there as well. Sudden light can deter most large vermin.

    Take the Necessary Steps to Protect Your Skip Bin

    If you have a persistent pest problem or know of home or business owners who've had problems in your area, talk to your skip bin rental company. Many can make recommendations or change your delivery and pickup schedule to decrease the risk of pest disruption.

    Use these tips to keep your skip bins secure against claws, hooves and beaks. For more information on skip bins and skip bin hire,   read our other blog posts  .

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