Water and Frozen Pipes
As snow continues to fall and winter temperatures fluctuate below freezing, it's possible for your pipes to freeze. Not only do freezing pipes cause a great inconvenience, they also cause major property damage leaving you with extensive repairs.
What Causes Freezing Pipes:
Exterior freezing temperatures cause the water to freeze and expand, creating a blockage. This blockage will cause an increase in pressure and strain your plumbing system. If the pressure gets too great it will cause the pipe to burst.
Pipes located along the exterior walls of your property may not have the adequate amount of insulation in protecting them from the exterior freezing temperatures. Pipes located in the attic or basement may not be as warm as other areas of the house which can cause a greater tendency to freeze. Lack of use can cause freezing pipes. Leaving for an extended period of time and/ or lowing your interior temperature while you're away, can cause remaining water in your piping system to freeze when exterior temperatures drop below freezing.
Signs of Frozen Pipes
One of the first signs for the potential of frozen pipes is when exterior temperatures drop below freezing. You can take precautions like adding insulation to prevent vulnerable pipes from freezing. Frozen pipes can show an accumulation of frost on the exterior of the pipe, this warning sign can indicate the pipe is frozen before you even turn on the faucet and there is a lack of running water, this can indicate that the pipe may be frozen.
If you experience a Water Damage as a result of frozen pipes in your business call SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County today. 502.241.6861
SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby also services Spencer, Henry and Trimble Counties.
Tips for Preventing Storm Damage
Storms are unpredictable and tend to target neighborhoods rather than entire counties. If you are unfortunate enough to be in the path, your business is vulnerable to fallen trees, hail damage, fire from lightning, wind damage, losing all or part of your roof, flooding, and power outage. Minutes later, the storm passes, and you are shocked by the extent of the damage.
Why is Storm Damage Preparedness Important?
As a business owner or facility manager, you’ll need to prepare and react to keep people working safely and stay productive. Here are 4 summer storm damage prevention tips to help your business survive the sudden summer storm and reduce downtime from storm damage commercial property loss.
#1 Preventative Maintenance
It’s easy to let maintenance items slip as the seasons quickly change from spring to summer. Be prudent and proactive by scheduling an exterior building inspection on your calendar. Here’s a simple checklist to get you started.
Check the condition of the paint and walls.
Check for broken windows and doors.
Check the condition of all railings.
Check for plants growing on the building or its foundation.
Clean the roof. Use care when working in high places; employ adequate fall protection.
Clean roof drains and gutters. Test drains and downspouts by flushing them with water.
Inspect the condition of the roof.
Inspect gutters for adequate anchoring and tighten, if necessary.
Inspect the stack and all roof penetrations.
Remove any plant life growing on the roof.
Clean up any debris found.
#2 Update Your Commercial Storm Damage Insurance Coverage
It’s devastating to discover that your commercial insurance policy doesn’t have adequate commercial storm damage coverage after a property loss. Along with your preventative maintenance and inspection, schedule an annual policy review with your insurance agent. Be sure to discuss coverage and exclusions and be certain that you understand them. This step removes the disappointment and unhappy surprise from a non-covered loss.
#3 Photograph and Document the Condition of Your Commercial Property
A photographic inventory of your business equipment, interior, and exterior of the business property is a tremendous help when navigating a commercial storm damage insurance claim. Your timestamped photographs accelerate the process when working with your insurance adjuster after storm damage has occurred and provides proof of adequate maintenance of the commercial property.
#4 Initiate Emergency Response Planning with SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County
It’s vital to the health of your business to have an emergency plan in place and to update it annually. SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County has a Emergency Response Plan (ERP) program that ensures you and your employees know how to prepare and react to storm commercial property damage. Should you need water damage mitigation, fire damage restoration, or emergency repairs as a result of commercial storm damage, your ERP with SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County will give you peace of mind that you have a strategic partner at the ready to respond to your need 24/7/365. Ask a Marketing Representative to schedule your ERP appointment today.
Don't let storm damage be disastrous to your commercial property. You worked hard to build your company and deserve the most efficient and experienced response. For the best storm damage restoration from fire, water, or wind damage, call SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County today. 502.241.6861
The Proper Way to Handle Basement Water Damage
Let’s face it– most basements aren’t welcoming even on a good day, so when a basement flood occurs, you probably don’t want to be down there. Listen to that little voice because it is trying to tell you the best way to handle a basement flood is to call for help.
Depending on how you utilize your basement, there could be plenty of dangers hiding in those inches of water. If you have electrical items, such as a washer, dryer, water heater or even outlets, it is possible you could be electrocuted if you step into that water. It is well and good to say to shut off the circuit breaker first, but what if that is also located in the basement? Rather than debate on the best course of action, call for help.
If you haven’t dealt with a basement flood before, your first instinct is going to be to do an online search, call friends, or otherwise try to educate yourself on the best way to proceed. Meanwhile, the water damage could be getting even worse. Don’t delay the start of the basement flood restoration — call for help.
On the chance that electricity wasn’t a problem and you’re feeling confident you can jump right in to deal with the basement flood, think about what you plan to do with your soggy belongings. If you don’t know how to salvage things, consider that a professional can save things you might not think possible and would have thrown out. So, one more paragraph ends the same – call for help.
When you’ve reached the realization that calling for help is the best piece of advice in this article, turn to us at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County. We can take care of your basement flood safely and minimize losses. We can fully restore your basement, including taking care of drywall repair and painting, so that your basement can be useful again.
Water Damage in your basement? Call the professionals here at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County today. 502.241.6861
Fire Damage: The Next Steps
Fire Damage can be a scary thing. Especially, if it involves your home or business. Follow the following steps to ensure that the damage is handled properly.
- Don’t touch anything.
Never enter your premises without the express consent of firefighters. Fire damage can result in an array of hidden, unsafe conditions. In addition, touching or removing items could void your insurance coverage - or lessen the amount that you receive for damage reimbursement. Commercial fires are a serious situation. When in doubt, call for professional help.
- Turn all utilities off.
Turn off water at the valve, and gas and electricity at the meter.
- Immediately contact your insurance company.
They can start the claims process rolling by sending out an insurance adjuster to assess damages and discuss the situation. They will also advise you of what you should or should not do to protect your insurance coverage. If you rent or lease space, contact the property owner’s insurance agent as well.
- After the “all-clear,” remove necessary items.
These include business licenses and permits, inventory and accounting records, employee documents, insurance information, cash, credit cards, and checkbooks, and other valuables. NOTE: Do not open fire safes until they have cooled as contents may ignite or the safe explode!
- Notify local law enforcement – and everyone else.
Alerting local law enforcement can help prevent further vandalism, theft, and liability issues. Employees, customers, suppliers and vendors should be notified of the situation, as well as the post office and your utility and credit card companies. Be sure to provide updated contact information.
- Call a pro.
Contact your local Rainbow International professional to schedule emergency board up and tarp over services, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. This will protect your business against additional intruder and weather related damage. In addition, schedule a remediation assessment with a professional in order to supply a rebuilding estimate and get the ball rolling with your insurance company.
- Keep extensive records.
Carefully collect and document receipts and expenses, and keep extensive records of all phone calls and rebuilding related discussions. Get written estimates before work is begun. Take care to read all items thoroughly before signature or approval.
- Need help?
The Red Cross may be able to offer assistance.
- Consider a loss assessor.
If things aren’t going your way with the insurance company and you feel the funds you’ve been allotted aren’t a fair reflection of the damage incurred, consider the help of a loss assessor or public adjuster. Unlike the loss adjuster, who works for the insurance company, a public adjuster is licensed by the state to negotiate declined claims and disputed settlement issues between your business and the insurance company on your behalf.
- Don’t expect a quick fix.
Though fire damage happens in a flash, understand it will take time to get insurance coverage, clean the site, secure necessary permits, rebuild, alert vendors, suppliers, employees and clientele, and reopen. Be driven, but realistic, about the time and effort involved in rebuilding.
Has your business suffered a fire damage? Don’t wait. Call SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County today. We have the knowledge, tools, and technology to restore your business to its pre-fire condition quickly! 502.241.6861
Water Damage Restoration Prevents Mold
Water can cause a lot of damage to your home or business. When flooding or water leaks occur it can cause a lot of destruction, and it can be so hard to cleanup. It is also difficult to know what can be dried out and salvaged or what is totally ruined and needs to be replaced. When things need to be replaced it is hard to know how to safely and effectively fix the damage. Hiring a water damage restoration professional will take all the guesswork out of cleaning up flood damage for you. They will take care of everything for you, so that you can have your home or business restored to its former glory without doing all the work yourself.
Water damage restoration can be tricky if you do not know what you are doing. A professional is trained and has experience dealing with water damage restoration. They will know how to effectively remove all the water and will have all the right tools for the job. They will know what can be dried out and will have industrial grade fans that will be able to dry everything out much faster than a box fan would be able to. They will also be able to tell what needs to be replaced and what can be salvaged.
A big concern when you have a flood is mold growth. Mold can grow in as little as 24 hours. It is important to have the water damaged area thoroughly inspected for mold growth. To protect all the people that will be in your home or business, it is important to have all mold cleaned up properly. A professional will have access to chemicals that can safely prevent mold and also chemicals that will remove mold for good.
If you are looking for an honest and experienced water damage restoration company, call us at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County today. Don’t wait until you have a big mold problem. We can remove all water and restore all areas affected by water damage.
Water Damage Restoration
When disaster strikes in your home, it can be so overwhelming to figure out how to get the damage cleaned up, so that you can put the disaster behind you and start living safely in your home again. Whether you have had a flood or fire, SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County can as help you get your home cleaned up and put back together, so that you can live in your home safely.
Flooding can cause major damage to your home. A lot of people think that they can simply clean up the water and throw a few fans on the carpet to dry it out. This is simply not enough to get the damage safely cleaned up. If you have a significant flood it is important that you have a professional come out and look at your home to make sure everything has been cleaned up properly. It is important to have an emergency damage restoration professional come out as soon as possible because they know how to get the mess cleaned up safely and how to check for damage that is not visible. Water damage can weaken areas in your home. It can also cause mold to grow.
Fire damage should also be handled by an emergency damage restoration professional. It is not only important to get the soot and scorch marks cleaned up, but also to clean up the fire-retardant chemicals that were used to put out the fire. Fire and smoke can also cause significant damage and can cause your home to be unsafe to live in. A professional will know exactly how to clean up the damage, and they will know what can be salvaged and what needs to be replaced. They will also be able to get out the smoky smell from your home.
Call us at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County today for emergency damage restoration today. Our experienced professionals will have your home cleaned up and safe to live in in no time. We will handle all the cleanup, so that you don’t have to.
Water or Fire Damage in your home? Contact SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County today to speak to a mitigation specialist.
Flooding from any source in an apartment is a concern for both the tenant as well as the property owner. Even though you may be only renting, an apartment’s still your home and the place where your personal possessions are kept. To minimize water damage to your valuables as well as the building’s structure—and ensure you receive any compensation you are entitled—here are some suggestions in the event of a flooded apartment.
- Report any incident of water damage and/or flooding to the apartment management or property owner as soon as it happens.
- If a ruptured pipe, toilet overflow or other ongoing event is flooding the apartment and you are unable to immediately get a response from maintenance personnel or the property owner, call a plumber yourself and request emergency service to stop the water. Keep records, you will have good grounds to deduct the expense from your rent.
- Make sure the premise is safe to enter. A flooded or wet indoor environment can pose electricity hazards if power is still on. Ask management or the property owner to have an electrician verify that power is disconnected at the meter.
- Take as many photos of each affected room as well as all damaged possessions as soon as you enter the premise. Don’t wait until after clean-up begins.
- If you have renter’s insurance, contact your insurance agent to determine whether coverage will apply. Generally, renter’s insurance doesn’t cover flooding from external natural events such as overflowing rivers or severe storms. However, if the indoor flood was caused by a ruptured plumbing pipe or other defect, this may be covered.
- Mold growth is a possible after-effect following flooding or other water damage. If you intend to continue to inhabit the property, ask the property owner to verify that professional mold remediation is included as part of the water damage recovery process.
- Always report any conditions, no matter how minor, which might lead to flooding or water damage to the apartment management or property owner as soon as they are discovered. This would include dripping plumbing pipes, roof leakage during rain, unexplained wet spots on ceiling or walls, as well as sewage issues.
Water Damage In Your Home Or Business? Contact the professionals here at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County today. 502.241.6861
Protecting your Home from Water Damage
To build something solid, something that lasts – a home, a career – you need a solid foundation. Beyond that you need to keep it strong and steady, as even the soundest structures can be ruined if the foundation fails.
Everything that lasts is built upon a strong foundation.
While this applies to all aspects of life, it is especially true in reference to a building or home. If the foundation is compromised, the entire house may crumble and fall or, at least, sustain a significant amount of damage. The necessary repairs will cause a lot of hassle and inconveniences and will cost dearly, so you need to do everything possible to prevent foundation problems in the first place.
While a house foundation can be damaged by various factors – earthquakes, extreme temperatures, tree roots, etc. – moisture is the number one culprit that compromises the home’s base. When water collects around your house from rain, snow, or burst pipes, the saturated soil around the foundation expands and shifts. The pressure on the foundation walls increases and results in cracks and leaks that will allow water to penetrate the foundation and cause electrical hazards, mold growth, and structural damage to the house.
To prevent such problems, you should try to find a way to protect your home’s foundation from water.
Keep Water Away from House Foundation
To prevent water damage to your home’s foundation, you need to keep water away from it.
Ensure Good Drainage
The best way to keep water away from your home’s foundation and avoid the need for expensive water damage restoration is to ensure proper drainage.
- Make sure the ground around your house is graded away from the foundation – The soil around your house should slope at least 6 inches within 10 feet of the foundation. If this is not the case, you need to add dense soil (preferably clay soil) to the area to create proper grading and prevent moisture from accumulating under the foundation;<pattachment-8104">Proper drainage is the best way to keep water away from your home’s foundation.
- Install a French drain system around the house foundation – Dig a trench around the foundation, line it with gravel, and place a drain with perforations in it to pull the excess water away. Cover the drain with gravel and add soil over it. Make sure the trench has a 3-5 percent down slope, so that the water flows away from the foundation;
- Make sure your basement has a functioning exterior drain system – a footer drain, weeping tile, etc. – to carry excess water away from the house (it would be best if the drain runs to a sump pump).
Keep the Gutters and Downspouts Working Properly
Make sure the gutters drain water effectively and direct it away from the house:
- Keep the gutters clear of leaves and debris so that the water can move freely through them. If they’re blocked, a heavy rain will send cascades of water down the side of the house and straight into the ground around the foundation. It is a good idea to have the gutters screened to help prevent leaves from clogging the drainage;
- Make sure the downspouts are draining at least 10 feet from your home. If necessary, extend the downspouts to ensure that they are effectively routing the water away from the foundation, not pouring it right next to your home. If you find downspout extensions unsightly (as you need to add pipes or other fixtures at several points around your home) or inconvenient (the pipes are a tripping hazard and make it more difficult to mow the area around the house), consider recessed downspout extensions or extensions that can be buried – they will keep water from the downspouts away from the foundation without interfering with the beauty or accessibility of your outdoor area.
Keep Your Property in Good Repair
To protect your home and its foundation, in particular, from water damage, you need to leak proof the entire home or building and maintain it in excellent condition:
Inspect the walls of your home (pay special attention to the foundation walls) for cracks and deteriorating mortar joints. If you find any, take quick and efficient measures to fix the problem – restore the mortar, seal small cracks with caulk designed to repair masonry, and fix larger gaps with the help of hydraulic cement;
Spare no efforts to keep your home safe and sound.
- Check the roof to make sure water isn’t trickling from the top down. Be sure to replace any broken tiles and fix loose or misplaced ones as soon as you notice them;
- Ensure that your eavestrough system is in good working order – inspect the gutters and downspouts for cracks, holes, or gaps every time you’re cleaning them and replace damaged or rusty drainpipes without delay;
- Inspect the plumbing system on a regular basis and keep it in good condition – replace or repair damaged or rusty pipes and valves and protect them well against the winter cold;
- Check for leaks under sinks, around toilets and bathtubs, behind appliances, etc. Look for dark spots where pipes might be dripping on floors, ceilings or walls and immediately repair any leaks you find;
- Check for water pooling near the foundation. If you find standing puddles close to the house after rain, remove the water and fill those areas with dirt to prevent pools from forming near the foundation in the future.
Do Not Let the Soil around Your House Completely Dry Out
During a drought, the soil of your foundation may dry out and shrink. When the next big rain soaks the earth, it will expand dramatically and exert great pressure on the foundation walls.
To prevent this from happening, you’re strongly advised to water the soil around your home’s foundation periodically during a dry season and keep it moist enough to thwart shrinking.
It is also a good idea to refrain from planting trees close to the house as they can soak up all the moisture from the soil and cause the foundation to crack.
Invest in a Quality Sump Pump
A properly functioning sump pump will effectively drain water away from your home’s foundation.
A quality sump pump installed in the basement floor can help prevent basement floods and water damage to your home’s foundation.
For best results, make sure your home has a sump basin that gathers water from rain or groundwater seepage. When the water reaches a certain level, the sump pump will turn on and drain the water away – into sewage lines, storm drains or dry wells, depending on the municipality. It is best, however, that the water be pumped out, not in the sewer system which can back up and send sewer water back into your basement.
You’re advised to perform several tests a year (especially during heavy storm seasons) to check if your sump pump is working properly. To test your sump pump, you need to fill its basin with water and watch to make certain that the buoy rises, the pump turns on, and the water level lowers.
A properly functioning sump pump ensures the best possible protection against flood damage.
Knowing how to drain water away from your home’s foundation effectively will save you plenty of troubles and all the money necessary for water damage cleanup and restoration. So, make sure you protect your home’s foundation well and keep it safe and strong at all times!
Water Damage as a result of a foundation leak? Contact the professionals here at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County today to speak to a Mitigation Specialist. 502.241.6861
The Dangers of Letting Smoke go Uncleaned
The Dangers of Letting Smoke Damage Go Uncleaned
Fire and smoke damage can wreak havoc on your personal property and structures. A quick reaction can help you minimize the impact of the destruction as some of your household goods can be salvaged if treated immediately. You should, therefore, hasten the process of hiring a professional to help you manage the damage in a correct manner. Conversely, if left untreated, smoke and fire damage can be more devastating in the following ways:
The restoration cost increases
When the treatment process is extended, the damages begin to worsen and are more difficult to deal with. If smoke goes untreated for long, the odors become more persistent and extremely difficult to neutralize. These challenges make the treatment process harder and more time consuming and ultimately more expensive.
Smoke and ash can mix with water to produce a highly corrosive element. If not cleaned quickly, this corrosive substance begins to slowly corrode away walls, floors, ceilings and any other surfaces in your home. Cleaning up quickly with soap and water is simply not enough. The substance requires proper cleaning with appropriate chemicals to remove it completely in order to contain the damages.
Neutralizing of soot residual and deposits is an effective first clean up step. If left for long, soot can easily travel and penetrate into other rooms that weren't recently affected by the fire, staining the wall paint, carpet, furniture, drapes, clothing and any other household items.
Your property can suffer permanent damage if not treated in a timely manner. Damage begins to set in within hours and prolonged exposure could cause permanent harm to your walls which turns yellow, metal surfaces begins to corrode, clothes stain permanently and wooden furniture which may need refinishing. It also damages the floor which may need replacing.
Following a fire, it is necessary to seek smoke treatment immediately to save yourself from the effects of prolonged exposure to smoke as well as to make it easier for you to restore your home. In the case you suspect smoke damage in your residence and need smoke or water damage cleanup contact the professionals at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County today. 502.241.6861
Winter Heating Safety
The following information was provided by the National Fire Protection Association.
There is something about the winter months and curling up with a good book by the fireplace. But did you know that heating equipment is one of
the leading causes of home fire deaths? With a few simple safety tips and precautions you can prevent most heating fires from happening.
be warm and safe this winter!
• Keep anything that can burn at least three-feet (one metre) away from heating equipment,
like the furnace, fireplace, wood stove, or portable space heater.
• Have a three-foot (one metre) “kid-free zone”
around open fires and space heaters.
• Never use your oven to heat your home.
• Have a qualified professional install stationary
space heating equipment, water heaters or central heating equipment according to the local codes and manufacturer’s instructions.
• Have heating equipment and chimneys cleaned and inspected every year by a qualified professional.
• Remember to turn portable heaters off when
leaving the room or going to bed.
• Always use the right kind of fuel, specified by the manufacturer, for fuel burning space heaters.
• Make sure the fireplace has a sturdy screen to stop sparks from flying into the room. Ashes should be cool before putting them in a metal container. Keep the container a safe distance away from your home.
• Test smoke alarms at least once a month.
Half of home heating fires are reported during the months of December, January, and February.
Fire Damage In Your Home Or Business? Contact the professionals here at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County today. 502.241.6861
SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County also proudly serves Spencer, Henry and Trimble Counties.