Recent Water Damage Posts

Flooded Crawl Space

6/28/2021 (Permalink)

A flooded crawl space after heavy rain may be all too common in many homes, but it is not however normal. Theoretically, the crawl space under your house is designed to stay dry in all weather. When it doesn’t, water damage ensues. Wood rot deteriorates structural components,  mold growth gains a foothold and infects the entire house and insects and vermin thrive in the wet, dark environment. You can’t do anything about episodes of prolonged or heavy rain that typically precede a flooded crawl space. What you can do is take a number of steps to keep water out and keep the crawl space dry, the way it was designed to be.

  • Divert water away from the foundation. Rainwater pooling around the foundation seeps into the crawl space through cracks and other openings. The landscape around the perimeter of the house should be graded so water naturally flows away instead of forming puddles that soak into the soil.
  • Keep rain gutters clear and unobstructed to prevent cascading overflow that also permeates soil around the foundation. Make sure gutter downspouts are long enough to discharge water sufficiently far from the perimeter of the house and prevent pooling.
  • Consider a foundation drain system. Embedded in a narrow, gravel-filled trench around the perimeter of the foundation, a perforated pipe catches water as it seeps into the soil and conveys it away from the house, out into the yard or all the way to the street.
  • Install a crawl space sump pump. Heavy rains also cause ground water to rise up into the crawl space instead of leaking in. Installed in a basin embedded in the ground inside the space, a sump pump activates automatically as ground water enters the basin. The pump conveys water through a discharge line that usually terminates out in the backyard. Because severe weather that floods a crawl space may also cause power outages, it’s a good idea to install a sump pump with a battery backup feature.

Water Damage in your crawl space or home? Contact the professionals here at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County to speak to a Mitigation Specialist. 502.241.6861

When your Dishwasher causes Water Damage

6/14/2021 (Permalink)

Are you one of the unlucky homeowners dealing with dishwasher water damage? It’s a scene that has played out in countless movies, usually in a comedic fashion. Kid puts regular soap in dishwasher, dishwasher explodes with bubbles, and we all have a good laugh at their expense. However, when you’re actually dealing with water leaks from your dishwasher, you need to know how quickly water damages can occur, why they happen, and what to do about them.

How long before dishwasher water damage occurs?

Dishwasher water damage can occur within just a couple of hours. You get home, turn on the dishwasher, walk away and watch TV for awhile, or run a few errands, only to come home and find a flooded kitchen floor. The first reaction should be to soak up as much of the water as you can, because the longer it sits there, the more likely it will cause permanent damage.

Some flooring materials are more susceptible to dishwasher water damage than others, such as wood or bamboo. Wood will absorb water quickly, causing your flooring to warp and crack. Make sure to effectively dry out the area ASAP so you can avoid as much damage as possible.

Dishwasher water damage and what to expect

If you’ve never experienced dishwasher leaks or water damage before, you might not even know what you’re in for. Here’s what to expect when you’re dealing with water damage from dishwashers, including the common causes of leaks as well as what elements of your kitchen are most vulnerable after a leak.

What would cause a dishwasher to leak?

Common causes of dishwasher leaks include:

  • Worn gaskets
  • Dishwasher not level
  • Wrong dishwashing soap used
  • Broken door
  • Defective dishwasher tub

Your dishwasher leak can cause water damage in a variety of ways to a variety of different elements of your kitchen. The below are all susceptible to damage after a dishwasher leak:

  • Tile
  • Wood
  • Laminate
  • Electrical wiring
  • Drywall
  • Wallpaper
  • Paint

How to repair water damage caused by dishwashers

The moment you notice your dishwasher is or has leaked, make sure to first turn off the dishwasher. Grab a towel or mop and soak up any visible water on your floor. This might mean pulling the unit out from under the counter so you can get any water that has pooled beneath the dishwasher itself. We also strongly recommend calling a local water damage repair company to ensure that you don’t have any moisture in your floor boards, which can quickly develop mold. 

Next, you need to identify the cause of the leak. Was the door slightly ajar? Does the latch not always work? Are the gaskets wearing out? Some problems you can fix yourself, but if you want to be extra confident in the repairs, call a specialist to come out and inspect and repair the unit.

Water Damage as a result of your Dishwasher Leaking? 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. 

Four Degrees of Water Damage

6/9/2021 (Permalink)

You may have had a small roof or plumbing leak.  A bath tub overflow.  A ruptured water heater.  Or major storm flooding.

The amount of water is only part of the water-damage equation.  The potential for deterioration and the extent of drying measures also depend on the rate of soak-in, the duration of exposure, and the rate of evaporation.  And those in turn depend on the area and type of materials affected.

When moisture lingers for more than a day carpet, furniture, and building surfaces typically develop mold.  Soon drywall swells and crumbles, wood swells, warps, and splits.  Metals corrode.  And given time even concrete weakens.  So damage can range from minor discoloration all the way to structural problems.  With SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby/Trimble/Henry/Spencer the emphasis is on prevention and mitigation.  Problems can become significant within 24-72 hours, so our focus is on getting things significantly dryer if not completely dry within that time frame.

IICRC Classes of Water Damage

The ANSI/IICRC S500 Standard and Reference is the gold-standard for the cleaning and restoration industry.  It presents practical guidelines and procedures based on science and extensive experience.  We talked about their categories of health hazards and the needs for surface cleaning and disinfecting before.  Let’s now cover the degrees of leaks, spills, and water intrusions and their potential for damage.  The IICRC divides them into four “classes.”  It doesn’t giving any specific amounts of water as many other variables go into determining the proper water restoration measures.

Class 1

This class involves the least amount of water.  It’s defined as affecting only part of a single room, with minimal wet carpet and affecting only low-permeable materials such as plywood and concrete sub-flooring.  Resulting from things such a roof leak and rowdy kids in the bath tub, there’s minimal absorption and little moisture remaining after bulk water removal.  So after mopping and blotting a natural slow rate of evaporation may be acceptable.  Lifting carpet speeds drying and lets you determine if the sub-floor is excessively damp.

Class 2

Here there’s more water, and more gets absorbed by building materials.  It’s defined as affecting an entire room or resulting in large areas of wet carpet, with water wicking upwards in walls at least 1 foot (but less than 2 feet) and moisture reaching structural materials.  Class 2 water intrusions require bulk water removal, surface water extraction, and dehumidification for faster evaporation.

Class 3

With the most water and greatest absorption involved, Class 3 water restoration requires the fastest evaporation to head off deterioration.  It’s defined as having flooring, sub-flooring, walls, and insulation saturated.  With a source above the ceiling, that may be saturated as well.  Advanced drying and dehumification methods via specialized equipment are critical.

Class 4

This last class is a special situation, typically the result of heavy natural flooding.  There’s been enough water and time to saturate materials such as stone, concrete, brick, and hardwood.  Highly aggressive methods to maintain very low specific humidity for longer periods than usual are required.  Or the affected rooms may be considered a total loss if the structure has been severely compromised.

Professional Water Damage Restoration

Homeowners, business owners, and commercial carpet cleaning services can often take care of cleaning and restoration for Class 1 situations.  But if there’s any doubt, call in a professional water damage restoration company for an evaluation.  You just might avoid the need for mold remediation, or worse.

Otherwise the risks range from odors to major structural damage.  For Class 2 and beyond it’s common to discard carpet and padding, mattresses and box springs, pillows, and particle board.  But wood baseboards and hardwood floors can usually be rescued.

The IICRC’s water damage restoration training emphasizes the importance of locating and removing trapped moisture hidden inside building cavities using leak and moisture detection meters to make sure nothing gets overlooked.

Technicians with various cleaning and restoration certifications carefully evaluate damp and wet materials then plan out the appropriate measures. They’re also well aware of electrical hazards, health risks, and safety hazards. Beyond visible water removal, they’ll quickly lower indoor humidity and rescue floors, walls, and ceilings with surface water extraction before moving on to further dehumidification for a complete structural dry out.  That involves an arsenal of advanced equipment, including specialized air movers, HEPA air scrubbers, refrigerant dehumidifiers, and odor-neutralizing equipment.  There’s also specialty drying systems for hardwood floors, sub-floors, and wall interiors.

Water Damage In Your Home Or Business? Contact SERVPRO of Oldahm/Shelby today to speak to a Mitigation Specialist. 502.241.6861

Purchasing a Water Damaged Home

5/3/2021 (Permalink)

Have you ever been out house hunting, looking for a perfect flip home? The majority of the time these homes are the ones that are a little distressed and rough around the edges. The home may have been foreclosed or have some pretty extreme looking damage, however these are the homes that give you the best profit in the end. If no one else wants to touch them, it might be a wonderful opportunity, but it could also mean that the price of the home is wrong. Here are some ways to determine if a home in need of water damage restoration is worth the buy. 

Mold

The first thing you will want to look for are signs of mold in a home as you are doing a walk through. Mold can be easy to smell right off the bat if it is extensive enough or has sat for a long period of time. You can also see signs of black streaking on the carpet or walls. You can see soft spots or even see large patches of growth. Mold can cause health effects if you breathe it in and it is important that you hire professionals from a company like SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County and don’t attempt to take care of it yourself.  

A small amount of mold is not something that should make you leave the possibility of that flip in the dust, but it could be an indicator of a big problem. The only way to know how much of a mold problem you have is to contact a professional to give you an estimate of the damage and cost. 

Structural Damage

Water damage can many times cause structural damage, especially if the water was left to sit on a wood or other porous surface for an extended amount of time. If this is localized to a small place, it may not be a huge water damage restoration project, but if it was an entire floor that was flooded, you will want to consult water damage professionals to give you an estimate before buying. In foreclosures, you cannot ask the bank to make any repairs like you can with a private owner. However, you can discuss the budget with your water damage professionals and try to adjust the offer accordingly. 

Most water damage restoration projects are difficult to predict if you aren’t a professional. Water damage has a way of hiding in walls and threatening to be more difficult than it seems, at first sight, this is why it is important to consult a professional before you buy a home to determine how much the damages will end up costing. Before you make an offer on a home, discuss your budget with a water damage restoration professional, so you can have a better idea of what you can afford to offer. 

Water 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. 

How to spot water damage

1/25/2021 (Permalink)

A house is one of the biggest investments you will make in your lifetime. In order to protect that investment, you should vigilantly look out for household problems and address them before they worsen.

One such dreaded homeowner issue is water damage. If left unattended, water damage can detrimentally impact the structure or spawn other complications, including mold that poses a risk to inhabitants. Below is several methods for detecting water damage within your house.

1. Check the Floors

No matter what kind of flooring you have, it will manifest signs of water damage. For tile and wood, look for cracked, buckling or warped flooring. When it comes to carpet, be aware of damp spots, gradual rises, soft spots or the smell of mold and dampness.

2. Look for Stains

Water stains on the floor around the bathtub, toilet or sink, as well as stains on ceilings and walls, are some of the most obvious signs of water damage. Unusual stains could indicate there is a leaky pipe or drain inside the wall. Cracks in the drywall or areas that appear swollen and are soft to touch also may signify trouble. Peeling paint is an additional sign of loose water within wall spaces. As the drywall gets saturated, paint can lose adhesion.

3. Inspect Outside

Observe the exterior of your house. What you want to look for are pools of standing water that can indicate poor drainage in the yard, gutter spouts that aren’t transporting water far enough from the house or leaky rain gutters. Any of those issues could threaten the foundation of your house. Additionally, common signs of water damage on the roof may include pools of water; cracked, curled or missing shingles; or broken flashing.

4. Watch for Rust and Mold

Inspect your water heater and check for rust on the tank or damp spots on the floor. A rusted tank could indicate a slow leak. Additionally, corrosion around pipe connections could be caused by water seepage. Visual signs of active mold growth mean moisture is contacting microscopic mold spores, often in the nooks and crannies of your home. Finally, don’t rely solely on sight. When water stagnates, mold and bacteria can grow, producing a musty, unpleasant smell.

Water Damage in your home or business? Contact the professionals here at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County today to speak with a Mitigation Specialist today. 502.241.6861

Storms and Water Damage

1/25/2021 (Permalink)

IT'S MORE THAN JUST WATER

You'd think that having a home flooded was enough, however it isn't. Water damage goes far beyond the time that the water is flowing. Rain damage has a long term effect on a home if not properly  treated, professionally and quickly. The water damage you see right after the rain (or even during) is only the beginning.

Within hours, your home will absorb some of the water. Water damaged carpets, floors, walls, drywall, stairs, furniture and any electricity wires or electrical appliances standing in the water's way.

If left untreated for more than a day, things get even worse. What was once only water damage, requiring water extraction and some fixing, now becomes an even larger problem. Mold will start growing thanks to humidity and supporting conditions. The wetness spreads deeper in to the places it can, causing mold growth in those hidden places as well. Standing water becomes stagnant water, now acting as a health hazard for all residents.

BASEMENT FLOODED? FLOOR DESTROYED? NOT ALL IS LOST

If your home has been affected by rain damage, the roof leaked or your basement was flooded, not all is lost. Although the results of water damage can be really bad, you can reverse the effects in no time if you just handle it fast enough. The sooner you get restoration professionals to help you get rid of the water and other water damage results, the better off you will be.

If you just found you have water damage, give us a call. We'll be there by the end of the day, assisting you with water damage restoration - we'll extract the water, assess the situation, and repair everything that needs to be.  

Above all else, we'll make sure you feel safe and sound. We're experienced in numerous types of water damage, we have professional technicians with vast knowledge, the best equipment the industry has to offer. When we take care of your home, you'll know you're in good hands.


Call SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby today to speak to a Mitigation specialist. 502.241.6861

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County also proudly serves Spencer, Henry, and Trimble Counties.  

What to do when your hot water heater is leaking?

10/14/2020 (Permalink)

The dreaded Hot Water Heater leak. Unfortunately, over time with wear and tear this is an absolute possibility. Should you find yourself in this situation follow the steps below to either solve or prevent the issue. 

1: Checking the Heater

The first thing you must do is check on the water heater regularly. In some homes the water heater is in an inconvenient spot however, it could be the difference between thousands in repairs and a couple hundred dollars to fix a leak.

It is highly recommend that you inspect to see if there are wet spots on or around the tank. Condensation forms on the tank as a result of the temperature. This drips onto your flooring.

2: What to do if there is a leak.

To begin, turn off the water valve to ensure that you don’t have a leak. When the water valve is turned off, the leak will persist because the water inside the tank has nowhere else to go. Next, wipe off the tank with a cloth to make sure it is dry. When the tank is dry, inspect for more water. Again, leaks will drip on the floor, but condensation will appear at random and bead on the tank.

#3: Turning Off The Power

You can shut off the power to your water heater to perform the process above, but you must remember to wipe off the tank. When the tank is dry, you can shut off the power and check for further condensation or leaks. It's best to do the process once a week just to ensure the heater works properly.

#4: Where Is The Leak Coming From?

To decipher exactly what is going on it's best to call a professional plumber as soon as the leak is discovered.  In the meantime, it is imperative to shut off the water valve to avoid excessive water damage and hang tight.

Should you have a Water Damage as a result give the professionals here at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County a call today to speak with a Mitigation specialist. 502.241.6861

Preventing Water Damage- Sprinkler System Maintenance

10/14/2020 (Permalink)

Don’t you love a full, bright green lawn under your bare feet? Proper watering is important for a healthy-looking lawn, however when you don't have a sprinkler system, it can be a hassle to get the lawn of your dreams. When a sprinkler system is installed, it not only eliminates the hassle of hand-watering; but also saves time, money and energy. A sprinkler system allows your lawn to be watered uniformly and regularly, keeping it in good shape.

Many homes now have sprinkler systems that operate on timers, which is so helpful; however sometimes leaks occur, and these can be difficult to pinpoint.

Knowing how to avoid leaks in your sprinkler system as well as knowing what to look for when you suspect a leak will help you resolve the issue quickly and minimize potential damage.

Preventing Sprinkler System Leaks

To keep your sprinkler system in good working order, it is important to do some post-season and pre-season maintenance. “Winterizing” your sprinkler will help you avoid costly repairs or substantial damage:

Insulate: 

To insulate, you need to shut off the water supply to your irrigation system and then add a protective covering over the main valve to prevent freezing. Any piping that is above ground should be insulated as well .

Be in control: 

If your system is automated then you must shut down the controller or the timer. To fully shut off the signal to the valves, either choose “off” or “rain-mode.” If you select rain-mode then the programming information will continue and you will not lose any of your settings.

However, for security purposes, you may still want to write down the information in case you have to reprogram it.

Drain the pipes: 

Keeping the water in the pipes during winter is leads to spring leaks. Standing water can freeze, expand, and break the pipe. Remove the water through either a manual or automatic, drain valve or compressed air blowout method.

Protect valves and backflow preventers: If backflow preventers and valves are above ground, then be sure to insulate them. Just be sure you do not block the air vents and drain outlets when insulating the backflow preventers.

Signs of a Leaking Sprinkler System

Soggy Grass

A sprinkler system works to keep your lawn watered evenly, but if you notice soggy or squishy grass under your feet, and it has not rained recently, then this could indicate a leak. The sogginess may be more noticeable in certain spots where a sprinkler valve or connection is buried. Make sure it is not a drainage issue or simply a sunken area where water will naturally settle. If the grass is not soggy after rainfall, but only after using the sprinklers, then you probably have a leak.

Unexplained Water on Concrete

If you ever notice a large wet spot or a small stream of water on your concrete, walkway or patio, and you know it is not due to rain or a recent sprinkler watering, this could also be a sign of a leak. Excess pooling or streaming water will eventually damage these surfaces, so it is best to get the necessary repairs done quickly to protect against further damage.

Sprinkler Head Damage

Sprinkler heads and pipes can become susceptible to damage when exposed, so regularly inspecting any areas that are accessible is important. If you suspect animals have been burrowing or feeding on or near your lawn, or you suspect a shoe or bike wheel ran over a sprinkler head, be sure to test it for damage. Sprinkler heads can become cracked or chipped, altering its performance.

Furthermore, sprinkler heads that pop-up can shift out of position and cause puddles in areas you do not want water. Keep in mind the heads can also accumulate debris and become clogged, which causes water to spray off target and leaves thirsty grass to die.

Water Pressure

How is the water pressure of your irrigation system? If the sprinkler coverage does not overlap water streams due to low pressure, there may be a leak or a clog. Anytime you notice bubbling, gurgling or hissing you probably have a leak.

However, if you notice a regular fluctuation in water pressure, the problem may be coming from the irrigation pipes which are susceptible to invasive tree roots and shifting ground.

Fungus Growth

Mushrooms are a fungus, and fungi love moisture. They do not naturally grow in a suburban or landscaped environment, so if you are seeing mushrooms, this could indicate a leak. Excessive and constant water flow around plants can kill root tissue which can result in a dying lawn. If grass and plants are not able to absorb the nutrients they need to thrive due to excessive watering, they will be more vulnerable to fungi growth.

Spike in Water Bill

Late Spring, Summer, and early Fall are the times your water bill will be higher. However, if you notice a spike in your irrigation bill beyond its normal use, you may have either a sprinkler leak or a plumbing problem. If your plumbing, toilet, dishwasher and washing machine all seem normal, but your water meter is constantly, it is time to investigate your sprinkler system.

A sprinkler system is a great way to keep your lawn healthy and beautiful. Taking precautions to protect your system from leaks, and knowing the signs of a leak will help you keep your lawn in good health and give you peace of mind about keeping water damage to a minimum.

Water Damage In Your Home or Business? Contact the professionals here at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County. 502.232.5213

Causes of Standing Water In Your Yard

6/1/2020 (Permalink)

Standing water is caused by many things: soil that doesn't absorb water, grading issues, etc. Try these drainage steps to keep your yard above water.

Keeping your lawn green is a matter of pride. So it can be upsetting to find large puddles of standing water in your yard. Not only is stagnant water unsightly, it can also kill your grass, damage ornamental plants, compromise your home’s foundation, become a breeding ground for mosquitoes and be symptom of larger problems.

What causes water to accumulate on your lawn? What are the best methods of eliminating standing water? Here’s what homeowners need to know.

Causes of Standing Water

When stagnant water forms on your property, it can be a sign of easily correctable habits or more fundamental design flaws.

Be cautious of over watering your lawn. If your home is equipped with an automatic sprinkler or irrigation system, you may need to make certain adjustments to address a problem with standing water. Try watering your lawn less frequently and/or for shorter periods of time.

If altering your gardening and maintenance habits doesn’t correct the issue, further investigation may be necessary. The following are common culprits in cases of standing water.

Grading. Lawns should be graded  or leveled to ensure proper drainage. The slope should trend away from the house and direct run-off down towards the street, alleyway or storm sewer. If your landscaping doesn’t take the proper angle, water may collect on your lawn faster that it can drain. Improper drainage can also cause natural low spots in your yard to accumulate more and more water with each rainfall.

ThatchProper drainage also depends on your lawn’s permeability. A permeable lawn allows water to seep into the earth instead of collecting on the surface. If grass clippings or leaf litter clog on your lawn, they can prevent the soil from absorbing water as it would under normal conditions. 

SoilsHard, compact soils and heavy, sticky clay soils are also less absorbent and prevent surface water from seeping into the ground.

Hard subsoil. Hardpan is a thick layer of impervious subsoil. Hardpan can be naturally occurring, or it can be the result of construction equipment densely compacting yards and lawns which are then topped with a layer of topsoil, disguising the issue. Once water percolates down to the hardpan, it has nowhere else to go and begins pooling.

High water table. As rain seeps into the earth, it becomes groundwater. This groundwater forms a water table, a completely saturated level of subsurface soil and rock. In some instances, however, the water table can rise very close to the surface, creating waterlogged conditions. 

Ways To Get Rid of Standing Water

Fortunately, you don’t have to live with standing water. Depending on the ultimate cause of your standing water problem, you can take immediate action to boost your lawn’s ability to shed water.

Re-grade. Consult with a professional landscaper on re-grading the terrain around your home. Be sure to request that the landscaper provide a survey of your lawn’s low-lying points, natural channels and drainage outlets.

De-thatch. You can remove heavy thatch using a dethatcher, vertical mower, or even a simple lawn rake. Once you’ve removed the plant debris, pierce the turf with a garden fork or a lawn aerator. The small holes you make should be at least 4 inches deep and spaced 2 inches apart. Aerated soil is not only soil that drains properly — it’s also healthier soil.

Break it up. In order to make your lawn more amenable to water absorption, work organic matter into your soil. Garden compost, leaf mold and manure will all open the soil up and create more minute channels through which water can escape.

DigFor hardpan problems, a shovel may be the best solution. If the hardpan is less than 2 feet thick, wait for a dry spell and then dig up as much as you can. If you can’t break up the hardpan yourself, consult with a professional contractor who specializes in drilling through densely packed subsoil.

Make accommodations. A high water table is a much more difficult issue to address. Instead, it’s a fact of life that you will likely have to work around. However, you can still improve drainage by increasing the depth of your lawn borders. You can also add layers of soil to create raised beds. Finally, you can landscape using more shallow-rooted plants capable of surviving wet conditions.

Install a French drain. A french drain (also known as a curtain drain) is actually a comprehensive drainage system made from rather simple materials. A graded trench directs the flow of water away from the home. The trench is then filled in with gravel, which lets gravity do the work of channeling the water into a perforated pipe that sits at the trench’s base.

Don’t let standing water keep you and your family from enjoying the outdoor areas around your home. By identifying the cause of your drainage problem and relying on good common sense, you can ensure that gray clouds don’t linger even after the storms have passed.

Water Damage to your home as a result of standing water? Call the professionals here at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County today. 502.241.6861

Steps to Avoid HVAC Water Damage

5/14/2020 (Permalink)

Summer is vastly approaching and there is no doubt you're air conditioner cranking 24/7. Oh, the sweet, sweet relief of an air-conditioned environment in 90 degree temps!

However, summer doesn’t just bring the heat, it also can bring an excessive amount rain. On hot days, this rain sometimes just makes it even nastier outside by increasing the humidity level. Did you know all this moisture can lead to serious damage to your ac unit?

An air conditioner works in part by removing moisture and heat vapors from the air to help cool off your home. This moisture and vapor are turned into condensation that is dripped into a pan and then out of your unit into the sewer system. Excess moisture from rain or extremely humid days can greatly increase the amount of condensation from your unit. Thus, creating a large puddle of water.

If left unattended, high water levels can result in clogs which turns into leaks that can cause damage to your unit and home or the growth of mold in your home.

There are simple measures you can take to help ensure you won’t have to be confronted by expensive water damage in your home and even possible repairs to your air conditioner. Here’s how to prevent this from happening.

Regular Maintenance

Like many common trouble areas that can come up with your air conditioner, one of the key  prevention methods is regular maintenance. Ensure that your HVAC system is inspected by an air conditioner repair professional at least once a year.

One of the main reasons for these clogged drain lines are algae that can build up over the years. Your technician can spot and address algae before the build-up becomes too great.

Remember: leave these inspections and repairs to the professionals.

Clean Your Air Filter

As your air conditioner cools the air it also cleans it. Over time, your air conditioner’s air filter can become cruddy and full of dirt, human and pet hair, lint and more. As it gets clogged up, it is harder for air to pass through and moisture can build up on the dirt, where mold begins to grow.

Thankfully, an expert HVAC service technician is not needed to change an air filter. Be sure to change your air filter every month. This keeps your air clean and help prevent build-up that can lead to moisture and mold inside your unit.

A clogged system also has to work much harder, which can wear it out sooner and lead to costly repairs.

Clear Away Outside Blockages

It is important to make sure anything that could block air flow is cleared from your HVAC unit. Like a dirty air filter, any blockages like bushes, trees, fallen leaves or anything else that could get in its way can cause your system to work harder.

These obstacles may also cause or produce additional airborne blockages that will clog up your filter.

Following the steps above should ensure that your unit is in tip top shape. Call an HVAC professional to schedule a yearly inspection today.

Water Damage as a result of clogged HVAC? Contact SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County to speak to a Mitigation specialist. 502.241.6861

 

Preventing Roof Damage

5/11/2020 (Permalink)

Summer is definitely a beautiful time of year. The long days and warm weather are a nice reprieve from the harsh winters.

But summer also brings about thunderstorms, and those storms can lead to hail, As a result roof hail damage can occur, creating a headache for many homeowners.

Large pieces of hail produce cracks and other roof damage, which cause leaks and drafts. These cracks will also threaten the integrity of your roof. 

Luckily, there are a few steps you can take to protect your roof against hail damage. Let’s take a closer look.

PREVENTION IS KEY

The average residential roof lasts around 20 years. However, factors like roof hail damage can lead to a need to repair the roof before that time.

Roof repairs can be extremely costly. And, if you make a claim on your homeowner’s insurance to pay for the repairs, your rates could rise. That’s why it is always preferable to take steps to protect your roof, rather than fixing the damage.

LIMIT ENVIRONMENTAL RISKS

Direct damage to the roof isn’t the only way that hail can damage your home. For instance, a powerful hail storm could also knock branches onto your roof. To protect your home from these effects, make sure to trim all trees especially branches that hang over your roof.

Also, be sure to regularly clean leaves and branches from your roof. This added weight adds strain to your roof, which can make it more vulnerable to hail damage.

RELY ON PROFESSIONALS FOR INSTALLATION AND INSPECTION

Getting work done on your house is expensive. For this reason, it can be tempting to save money by completing some of the work yourself.

But a poorly done, amateur roof job can end up costing you more in the long run. A professional will also be able to ensure that the completed work is done to code.

Also, it’s a good idea to have your roof inspected every few years. Most get their home inspected when they purchase it, but usually don’t think to have one after they own it. Having regular inspections is a good way to catch damage before it becomes serious.

CHOOSE MATERIALS THAT ARE RESISTANT TO ROOF HAIL DAMAGE

Not all roofing material is created equal. It’s important to choose a high-quality roofing material that will stand up to weather damage.

Asphalt shingles are one of the most popular roofing materials. This is because they are lightweight, durable and affordable. For the best protection, choose class 3 or 4 resistance.

Metal roofs are also a sturdy option. Keep in mind, however, that these often receive cosmetic damage during hail storms.

One of the highest quality roofing materials you can get is slate. The natural stone look also has great aesthetic appeal.

Taking these necessary steps will help prevent your roof from ever being damaged.

Water Damage as a result of a roof leak? Contact the professionals here at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County today to speak to a Mitigation Specialist. 502.241.6861

Intercepting Garage Water Damage

5/7/2020 (Permalink)

The interior of a your home is not the only place that is vulnerable to water damage. Garages, for example, often sustain just as much, if not more damage than a homeowner’s basement, living room, or kitchen. In fact, many homeowners use their garages for storing boxes of personal items as well as family heirlooms that would be difficult, if not impossible to replace. To ensure that your home, including your garage, sustains as little damage as possible in the event of a flood or leak, please contact an experienced water damage repair and restoration contractor who will mitigate the damage and immediately begin the restoration process.

Preventive Tips

Spring storms and flooding are not unheard of, so it is in a homeowner’s best interest to take certain steps to avoid water damage to their home and property. For instance, to prevent your garage from flooding, you should consider:

  • Placing weatherstripping, such as self-adhesive tape or rubber stripping, around your garage door to maintain the temperature in your garage and prevent water from pooling under the door. Weatherstripping needs to be replaced regularly, so make sure to check yours for cracks or other signs of deterioration.
  • Checking for foundational cracks or other evidence of damage. Even minor cracks can allow water to seep into a garage as well as from the garage into the home itself. If you find any cracks, be sure to seal them with a vinyl concrete patch or waterproof paint. Large problems will should to be fixed by a professional.
  • Improving drainage in the area around your home by installing drains in front of your garage or along the driveway. This can be instrumental in transporting water away from the foundation.
  • Placing sandbags and other flood barriers around your property. These barriers expand when they come into contact with water and can help low-level flooding from spreading into your garage and home.

In some cases, no amount of preventive measures can save a garage from being flooded. In these cases, it may be in your best interest to install a flood vent, which would allow flood-water to flow through the garage itself. While this will help protect the interior of your home, it will also allow the garage to flood, which can result in a significant amount of damage. If you want to take this route, be sure to remove any important and valuable items from your garage and contact a professional who can assess and repair the damage.

Call an Experienced Repair and Restoration Emergency Services Contractor

Water damage can have devastating consequences for homeowners who may have to replace all of their possessions. However, the earlier a person addresses a flood by seeking professional aid, the less damage his or her property is likely to suffer. To speak with a member of our dedicated restoration team, SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County at 502.241.6861. We realize that disasters can occur at any time and for that reason we make ourselves available to you 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

What You Should Know About Flooding

5/5/2020 (Permalink)

Heavy Rains And Flooding

Sometimes the weather gets a little bit crazy and the rain pours down from the sky in full force. These types of rains don’t happen all the time, however when they do, they can cause major indoor water damage to homes and businesses. Water pounds down on roofs and can cause leaks in the ceilings, it can puddle up outside of the homes and businesses and seep in through windows or cracks, it can even come down so hard that it causes inches of rain to flood the streets, parking lots and driveways and eventually make its way into your home or business. When heavy rains cause damage to your property, don’t wait to call in professional water damage cleanup crews that can extract the water and dry the water damaged areas quickly to reduce the amount of damage that comes along with heavy flooding.

Water damage from rain that floods the inside of your property is not the highest quality of water. Flooding rainwater is often contaminated with dirt and other debris that is unhealthy to be around.

If the heavy rain has caused rivers to overflow or sewage to back up and get into your property, then the water is extremely hazardous and should not be touched or stepped in. Contaminated water can easily cause health issues if not handled properly. Do not risk anyone’s health by getting in the water or asking anyone else to get in the water. Call a professional company that has been trained to properly clean up, decontaminate, and restore areas affected by contaminated water.

Even if the source of the water is clean, or seems to be, you do not want to try to clean up the water and handle the restoration process all on your own. Professionals have industry sized equipment to extract standing water and dry the affected areas quickly. If water is not completely removed and dried, it can easily turn into a mold problem that will be more extensive and costly to repair. Mold can start growing in as little as 24 hours, so time is of the essence, contact a professional water damage cleanup company such as SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County.

If you have water damage from previous flooding and can see, or suspect, mold growth, don’t worry. SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County is a qualified mold remediation company with a team of experts that can clean up and repair any area that has been destroyed by mold. SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County is a one-stop-shop when it comes to water and fire damage cleanup, as well as mold removal. 

If you have experienced any type of flooding remember these three key things

  1. Do not wait to get help. If you wait too long, you are going to end up with a bigger problem that will definitely take longer to repair and cost more.
  2. Do not try to do it on your own. If you do, you are likely to cause a bigger problem. Let the specialists take care of it so that the job can be done the right way, the first time.
  3. SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County is  local and are available 24 hours, 7days a week. No matter what time the damage happens, we have a team on call and ready to help!

Call us today to speak to a Mitigation Specialist. 502.241.6861

Damage Caused By Small Leaks

5/5/2020 (Permalink)

When serious flooding occurs, the catastrophic images of cars floating down the street dominate the local news cycle. Dramatic rains cause tens of millions of dollars in repair costs to homes and businesses alike. However, a simple leak can also unfortunately, lead to substantial damage and costly reconstruction or repairs to your home.

Water Damage is progressive; the longer that small water leak is left to drip, the more damage it can cause to your home. Here are just a few of the consequences of even a simple water leak:

Damage In The Structure

Waters weakens wood as well as corrodes metals. The most home construction relies on both materials along plus concrete.  A compromised structure can also lead to buckling floors and collapsing walls and or ceilings.

Sheetrock walls are also vulnerable to slow water leaks. Again, the gypsum base, faced by paper, creates a sponge that pulls water deeper into the core of your home. The walls will not only become weak but also harbor mold.

When water has long sustained contact with unsealed bricks or concrete, cracks and erosion is a result. If the moisture freezes and unfreezes, the damage is exponential. Cracks in the foundation can lead to expensive and complicated repairs to the destabilized foundation.

Damage To Floors And Fixtures

Water also weakens the backings of your carpets and rugs, making them more susceptible to wear and tear.  Carpet is durable but not designed to stay damp; this invites rot, decay, mold and insects.

Leaks can also cause damage to metal fixtures like sink taps and shower heads. Rubber gaskets decay and become debris in the line, reducing water pressure.

In the bathroom, a slow leak may loosen tiles near the tub or shower. In your kitchen, damage may progress to warped or discolored floorboards near the dishwasher, sink, and refrigerator.

Bugs, Fungus, And Mold

Standing water attracts insects and insects bring germs (and more insects!) A vicious reoccurring  Once a moist environment develops inside your home, airborne mold spores can flourish. These colonies release mold spores into the air and can cause skin and respiratory irritations (as well as unpleasant odors).  

Water Damage To Your Wallet

Any degree of water damage will become an issue when you sell your home. Avoiding repairs now will create expenses in the future. For example,  the home inspector will spot and document water damage not properly handled. Potential buyers will make a ‘low ball’ offer for less money or worse, infer that the home too much trouble to take on.

Call SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County today!

Get friendly, high-quality assistance from our certified staff. These experts go through extensive water damage training and have years of experience under their belts. Armed with top-notch equipment and proven techniques, they will systematically repair and restore the damage resulting from a leak in your home.

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County provides 24 hour emergency service to help commercial and residential property. By working closely with you and your insurance company, claims can be settled quickly so that repairs can begin.  Call today for help recovering from any residual water damage. 502.241.6861

Protecting Your Home From Water Damage

5/4/2020 (Permalink)

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;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.

  1. 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;
  2. 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;
  3. 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;
  4. 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;
  5. 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

Apartment Flooding

4/30/2020 (Permalink)

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

Water Heater Leaks

4/23/2020 (Permalink)

Causes and Prevention of Water Heater Leaks and Overflows

 

There is no doubt that hot water heater leaks or overflows will cause extensive damage to your home, however even a water heater pipe dripping or leaking slowly will cause major water damage over time. As the water becomes absorbed into the particle board and swells, it causes the floor to rot and decay. Moreover, the seemingly small water heater overflow leak could lead to water heater flooding causing water damage to your flooring, walls and possibly your homes contents. Beyond that, if not treated properly could eventually cause mold in the surrounding areas.

Causes of Leaks

The life span of most water heaters is about 8 - 15 years. So, water heater leaks and overflows are just a matter of time for most people. There are different causes for water heater damage and flooding, so the best and simplest solution is to try and avert extensive water damage in the first place. Proper maintenance of your water heater pipes, water heater overflow pan, and water heater overflow valves  is extremely important, given the capacity of water heater tank overflow to cause so much water damage. Regular preventative maintenance may ward off water heater leaks and the resulting extensive, expensive repairs.

All water heater pipes and valves must be checked for leaks and drips regularly. Also, make sure to check under the water heater, in case corrosion and rust have eaten away at the bottom of the tank. Continuous water heater leaking into the water heater overflow pan can be caused by corrosion and sediment build up inside the tank. Periodically pouring out some water from the spout at the bottom of the water heater should take care of the sediment and minimize any corrosion. Prior to performing this procedure, you should turn off your gas or electric power and wait for your water to cool a little. Also, turn off the valve for incoming water and drain water into a bucket or toward the outside of the house.

The temperature/pressure valve on your water heater is a safety feature to release water if the temperature and pressure in the water tank get to be too high. If the valve is not functioning properly, the water heater tank may explode. Since water heater valves may be defective or old and may leak, a regular check could expose any such problem before it gets out of hand and causes water heater overflow valve leaking. As you check the valve, keep in mind that the water in the tank is hot and can cause serious burns. When you pull up or push down on the valve and hot water comes out from the overflow pipe, the valve works as intended.

Prevention

Once you establish a good maintenance schedule for your water heater and regularly check for water heater overflow pipe leaks, you should be able to prevent most water heater leaks and floods. Still, you may want to be proactive and go a step further.

Make sure you have a water heater overflow pan under your tank. They are inexpensive and are a good investment in case of water heater overflows and leaking pipes. The water heater pan should capture water and prevent moisture problems by draining water away.

Another step you may choose to take if you have particleboard under and around your water heater, would be to remove it and install plywood instead. Particleboard can be easily damaged with water, but plywood is more resistant. You may also want to use a water sealant on the floor under the water heater tank to protect the area from any possible water damage in case of a water heater pipe bursting, dripping or leaking. If you choose to take this step, please make sure to turn off your gas or electric power to prevent a fire hazard.

What to do when you spot a water heater overflow

Sometimes, you’ll be able to spot a water heater overflow at its early stages. If this happens, you can take immediate action and contain the damage before calling for help. These are the basic steps:

  1. Put on protective clothing – Make sure to wear rubber boots, gloves and goggles. If water is pouring out from the heater, wear a vest or a raincoat for an extra layer of safety.
  2. Survey the area carefully – Make sure that the water on your floor isn’t hot enough to scald you. A room full of steam is a red flag. Make sure there’s good visibility and check carefully for power outlets or electrical wires that may have been submerged to avoid the possibility of getting shocked.
  3. Shut off the water supply – Look for the cold water pipe that feeds water to the heater. It should be the pipe that comes from the main water line and goes to the top of the heating chamber. Look for the valve that controls water flow and turn it clockwise until it won’t twist anymore. Normally, the water supply shuts itself off when the tank is full, but since a leak results in a tank that never fills up, the water will keep on running until it’s manually shut off.
  4. Turn off the heating ASAP – If the water overflow is caused by a malfunctioning thermostat, the water isn’t the only thing you should be concerned about. The heating element will not shut itself down, making it waste energy or even worse possibly start a fire. As the homeowner, you should know what powers your heater: electricity or natural gas. If your heater runs on electricity, go to your breaker box and flip the switch that feeds power to the heater. If you use gas, shut off the gas line that supplies the heater. If you smell the scent of gas, make sure to get everyone out of the house . Lastly, BE SURE TO CALL THE GAS COMPANY AND FIRE DEPARTMENT. DO NOT GO BACK IN THE HOME UNTIL INSPECTED. 
  5. Document the incident – Take photos of parts of your home and its furnishings that may have been damaged by water. Take notes on what happened as you recall the events. This will be instrumental in filing a successful insurance claim.
  6. Contact SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County today to speak to a Mitigation Specialist.  Water damage can be a nightmare to contend with after a water heater overflow. If done incorrectly, it leaves behind a musty smell and it can permanently damage your home’s structure and the items in it. Bacteria and fungi can also fester and pose a hazard to your home’s inhabitants.

Managing Water Damage In Your Home

4/22/2020 (Permalink)

Even just a few inches of water can do serious damage to your home. Here at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County we specialize in water restoration. Below we will discuss helpful DIY advice on how to deal with a water emergency and protect your home for the future.

Water Damage is the second most filed insurance claim in the United States with billions of dollars in property losses spent each year.

Follow these 3 simple steps immediately prior to troubleshooting:

  1. Turn off the water supply in your home

  2. Turn off all power

  3. Call a Water Restoration Company as soon as possible

WHY A WATER LEAK IS AN IMMEDIATE EMERGENCY:

  • A 1/8 inch crack in a pipe can cause as much as 250 gallons of water released per day!

  • Mold can grow in an untreated, damp environment within the first 24 to 48 hours

From burst pipes, to clogged toilets, sewer backups and water heater failures, water emergencies can happen at any time. SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County helpful infographic is designed to walk you through simple troubleshooting to address your water emergency as soon as possible.

Whether it is your water, mold or fire damage  SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County professionals are here to help you with all of your residential restoration needs.  

WATER DAMAGE CAN BE PUT INTO THREE CATEGORIES:

  • Category 1- Uncontaminated, clean water that doesn't pose a threat (water from a kitchen sink or tub being an example).

  • Category 2- Grey water from sump pump pit water or discharge from a dishwasher could contain contaminants and exposure could result in illness.

  • Category 3- Black water from sewer backups or floodwater can cause serious risk from exposure.

PREVENTATIVE MAINTENANCE - DO IT YOURSELF

Keeping your home safe and dry can be an easy process if you follow these simple steps:

  1. Frequently inspect your water lines and seals on washing machines, water heaters, dishwashers and ice-makers.  Replace them if needed.

  2. Drain water heaters every six months to prevent sediment buildup.

  3. Prevent frozen pipes by maintaining the heat in your home.

  4. Inspect your water shut-off valves regularly and replace if needed.

     5.Test your sump-pump at least once a year

As always if you have a Water Intrusion give the experts at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County a call to speak to a Mitigation specialist today. 502.241.6861

Common Causes of Water Damage

4/20/2020 (Permalink)

By educating yourself, you can do much in the way of preventing water damage emergencies. In addition to this, if they do happen, you’ll be more ready to tackle them quickly and efficiently to minimize your loss.

Here are a few of the top causes of water damage, and things you can do in an effort to prevent them in your own home:

  1. Appliances and equipment. It is logical that the countless appliances in your home that use water would be susceptible to water damage. Washing machines, air conditioners, dishwashers, and water heaters are typical culprits. The best thing you can do to prevent water damage from these sources is to be aware of the state of your equipment. Familiarize yourself with the pipes and tubes especially, and replace anything that looks brittle, rusty, or has bulging or signs of moisture. These replacements are investments for the future. In addition, try to be present in the home while running the washing machine or dishwasher.
  2. Roofing. This is a huge culprit. Make sure you are checking your roof routinely. Standing water is a bad sign that often indicates a drainage problem.
  3. Rain and storms. These are sometimes harder to predict and protect against, but there are still precautions you can take to protect against water damage from rain water. Keep your gutters clear. Monitor window wells to the basement level of your home and ensure that standing water does not collect.
  4. Pipes. 50% of flooding incidents are a result of burst water supply lines! Insulate pipes that may be exposed to colder temperatures to help prevent freezing and bursting. Another helpful tip is to monitor your water bill. Don’t just pay it- pay attention to it, as well! Significant or sudden increases can indicate leaks that should be investigated.
  5. Clogged drains. These are a perfect environment for nasty bacteria to grow and fester. When they get out of hand, they can cause sewage backups or overflowing, and water that comes from these sources is likely contaminated.

Being aware of the dangers of water damage is half the battle and is an excellent way to prevent water damage before it happens. If it’s too late for prevention, use it as a learning experience. Do research, ask questions, and call a professional at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County to help you promptly and effectively clean up the mess. 502.241.6861 With the right response, you can come out of this inconvenient experience feeling confident that you know how to give yourself the best shot at avoiding future disasters.

7 Causes of Sump Pump Failure

4/1/2020 (Permalink)

7 Causes of Sump Pump Failures

While there are many ways a sump pump can fail, here are the most common situations in which severe water damage occurs as a result.

1. Overworked Pump

Whether the sump pump is old or the water is just coming in too fast, the mechanism alone cannot handle the amount of water filling into the foundation. This will usually occur during flash floods and other heavy rains. Whether the sump pump is good quality or not can also make a big difference, so a weak plastic model would never stand a chance against a severe thunderstorm.

What to do. Either buy a bigger sump pump or buy another model of the same quality to have twice the amount of water flowing away from the foundation. This way you won’t have to worry about a water damage problem every time it rains.

2. Sump Pump Working But No Water

If there isn’t any water in the sump pump, this means that the model wasn’t installed correctly or it’s not hooked up to drainage system.

Importance of a drainage system. This is just as important as the model itself. It’s best to have a drain tile installed within or outside the sump pump or along the lining of the basement. As long as it collects water and drains it to the pit, using gravity to push it, there shouldn’t be any problem. But if the drain-tile is damaged, not even the sump pump would be helpful.

What to do. Allow a licensed plumber to inspect, fix, or replace the drainage system. You might deal with a hefty bill, but your future self will be thanking you during the next rainstorm.

3. Clogged Sump Pump

There are a number of ways the sump pump can become clogged and back up, leading to a water damage disaster. All of the following are common occurrences:

5. The Sump Pump Loses Power

If you were on vacation and the power is cut off from the sump pump, the entire basement faces the risk of flooding. Common causes of power failures include knocked down power lines, the pump is unplugged, or if the circuit breaker trips.

What to do. While some factors you will be able to control, like the circuit breaker, others involving power outages that can keep you worrying in the dark about whether or not there’s water in the basement. But what you can do is install a battery-powered backup that will add some peace of mind while lighting the candles upstairs.

6. Sump Pump is Running Non-Stop

If you notice the sump pump running when there’s obviously no water, you know you have a problem. But it also needs to be addressed right away before the model burns out. Here are some common causes:

  • Wrong sump pump or liner size. In many cases, the sump pump is too small to handle the amount of water coming in from outside. The pit can also be too small, causing the water to fill up too quickly that puts the pump into overdrive.
  • Missing or broken check valve. The check valve allows the water to flow in only one direction, one that flows away from the pit. But it it’s missing or broken, water will easily flow right back into the pit, overwhelming the pump and eventually overflowing into the basement.
  • Float switches in cheap sump pumps can easily become tangled and clogged.

What to do. Allow a licensed plumber to inspect the pump before each heavy rainstorm to ensure that everything is working properly.

7. Defective Product

While nobody likes to get excited or relieved about buying something and only find out that it doesn’t work, it happens all the time. And sump pumps are no exception.

What to do. Always make sure that the model works properly by testing it and filling the pit up with water.

Water Damage Emergencies


While learning about these common causes and what to do in each situation can certainly help to prevent failures in the future, they are never a guarantee. In any case that you have a basement flood, or any other type of water damage in your home or building call the professionals here at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County. 502.241.6861

Water Damage In Your Basement

1/17/2020 (Permalink)

Basement Water Damage 

Water follows the path of least resistance, finding cracks and holes through basement walls. Flooding can often be associated with insufficient drainage around basement walls, heavy rains, a faulty sump pump, or a combination of these factors. There are many ways you can incur basement water damage, so here are some things you can do to help prevent and tackle basement water damage.

12 Tips For Flooded Basement

  • Move all electrical outlets or plugs to higher levels in the basement.
  • Do not store valuable items in a basement with potential flooding issues.
  • The ground next to your foundation should slope away from the home.
  • Point gutters and downspouts to discharge water at least 5 feet away from the home.
  • Plant plants and borders at least 12 inches away from the foundation.
  • Seal all windows and vents.
  • Unclog gutters and downspouts.
  • Waterproof the walls inside your basement with a roll-on concrete waterproofing product.
  • Consider installing a sump-pump to pump out unwanted standing water.
  • Address poorly-draining soil around the home by installing a French drain.
  • Call a foundation contractor to address ongoing and outstanding issues with your foundation.
  • Call a restoration company for emergency water damage extraction.

What are the long-term issues with  flood-damaged basements?

Basements that experience regular flooding will expose homeowners to mold and mildew.  Regular water damage to the foundation of your home can contribute to structural weakness. There are obvious costs to dealing with a flooded basement and no homeowner wants to clean up a flood multiple times. The overall value of your home can also be negatively affected by a flood. 

Emergency Basement Water Damage Extraction

If you need basement water damage extraction, SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County has certified water damage cleanup technicians on call 24/7. Give us a call to speak to a Mitigation Specialist today. 502.241.6861

Water Damaged Ceilings

1/17/2020 (Permalink)

Ceiling Water Damage

Do you have ceiling water damage in your home? Does one of your ceilings have discoloration or dampness? It could be from a roof leak, a pipe between floors or a leak from your HVAC if your HVAC is in the attic. Typically homeowners don't  notice a leak in their home until there are visual signs of it. In many cases like the ceiling, it is an ongoing issue but needs to be fixed as soon as noticed.

What To Do When You Find Ceiling Water Damage

Once you notice you either have discoloration, dampness or an odor possibly from water damage on your ceiling, the first thing to do is access  where the water is coming from. This might require you to get into your attic. If no signs of leaking or clogging are evident from your HVAC, the next logical location to check is your roof. If you find this to be the case, it’s best to call a roofing professional and have them inspect your roof and determine the correct course of action to repair the issue that is causing water to get into your home.

Repairing Ceiling Water Damage

Once the roof or cause of origin has been fixed, you can focus your attention on the damaged portion of your ceiling. The best option for repairing the ceiling would be to remove the damaged ceiling and replace it with new drywall. One of the things to consider when repairing the ceiling is the size of the damaged area. You may want to hire a restoration contractor who would have the necessary tools and PPE. Many times, if the water has been an ongoing issue, there is mold on the surface or backside of the drywall and that makes the removal process more dangerous. If this is the case, you should hire a restoration professional who can properly handle the mold removal process without cross contaminating the rest of your home.

Water Damaged in your home or business? Contact the professionals here at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County today. 502.241.6861

Water Damage In Apartment- Who's Responsible

4/11/2019 (Permalink)

Unfortunately, water damage is a common issue that renters can face. The aftermath can be devastating making the property unlivable and permanent damage may occur to personal belongings. When water damage occurs in an apartment, who is responsible for the damage cost? The property owner or renter?

Renter rights

Water Damage can be unpredictable and it is vital to understand your renter rights and understand whom is responsible for what in the event. In general, a landlord is responsible for maintaining the property along with ensuring that the apartment is livable and functioning up to code. The landlord may refuse repairs, or fail to address them quick in enough – causing further damage such as mold. In the United States, basic principles in tenant rights are in place and outline the party liable for damages.  Depending on the state, rent details can vary so check with your local housing authority.

Review your lease

It’s imperative to know what your lease states regarding property damage. Most properties have property insurance and will list what type of damage that is covered and what is not. The lease may specify actions that may be in place depending on the severity of the water damage. If the damage is severe and the apartment is unlivable is the tenant still required to pay the rent? Can the landlord evict the tenant or can the tenant cancel their lease without penalty? In general, if the damage is minor, the tenant will not be able to cancel the lease agreement. If the terms regarding property damage are not listed in the lease, speak to your landlord about who is responsible in the event when water damage strikes.

Renters insurance

Accidents happen which is why it is essential to have renters insurance. Most places require you have it before allowing you to move in an apartment. Depending on the plan you select, coverage can vary from damages to the building, personal content and may even cover the cost of lodging while repairs are being completed.

Landlord Responsibilities

The landlord is responsible for maintaining a functional apartment ensure that it is livable. The upkeep of basic plumbing such as sinks, toilets and tubs fall on the shoulders of the landlord. Failure to maintain or repair these functions may lead to property damage and the landlord is liable due to negligence.

Damage to property and personal belongings

Water damages caused to the building itself such as flooring, walls and utilities should be covered under the landlord’s property insurance. Personal property damages fall to the responsibility of the party at fault for damages, which can be the tenant. For example, if the tenant leaves a faucet on and falls asleep causing water damages.

How we can help

Water damage requires a rapid response in order to minimize loss to both the property itself and belongings inside.  SERVPRO technicians are experts at water damage cleanup in apartments and building of all sizes no matter severity of the damage. Our team of experts will assess the damage and develop an appropriate plan to restore and recover your property and contents. Contact us by calling 502.241.6861 to learn more about our water damage clean-up services.

The Dehumidification Process

3/21/2019 (Permalink)

Dehumidification is the process in which excess moisture is removed from your property. The process often takes place following a deep cleaning or when water has to be cleared out following a flood. 

So what happens during dehumidification?

  1. The dehumidifier must be sized based on the area you need to have treated. The size is based on the number of pints of water a unit can remove in a 24-hour period. Use a humidifier with a capacity of 10 pints for every 500 square feet.
  2. A fan will start working in the dehumidifier. This will take in air from the area, particularly air with high moisture content.
  3. The air that is collected will come in contact with cooling coils. Those coils will remove moisture as the temperature is lowered.
  4. The treated air is released back into the room. The air should be dry at this point.
  5. The key is to get the relative humidity in a room to around 30 to 50 percent. This is a natural level of moisture that does not cause surfaces to become wet but still ensures the surfaces will not wear out.

Water Damage In Your Home? Contact the professionals here at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County today to speak to a Mitigation Specialist. 502.241.6861

Preventing Basement Floods

1/28/2019 (Permalink)

Basement Flood Prevention: Basements are no longer ignored spaces where people store things they don’t need or use. Some build an extra room or a guest-bedroom in it; others design a media room or a game room in their basement. Regardless of what they chose to do with it, basements are seeing regular use these days.

Needless to say, flooding is a major concern to people who’re actively using their basements. If you are storing expensive media equipment, nice furniture and spending so a decent amount of  money in designing the rooms, you want to ensure they don’t get damaged.

The causes of a basement flood

Basements can be flooded due to several problems. There might be a massive leak in some pipeline in your home or someone left the tap open in one bathroom. However, the most common causes of basement floods are listed here:

  1. Basements can flood when surface water during rainfall or storms that run down the foundation walls and into the basement
  2. Sometimes, the ground water comes in contact with soil that’s already soggy. Hydrostatic pressure would demand that water find an outlet and that would be the basement
  3. There are times when the municipal storm drains are overwhelmed and excess water is pushed into residential outline foundation drains, causing some water to leak into the basement
  4. An obstruction in your home’s sewer line or the municipal sewer line can cause sewer water to rise through the sink or floor drains. This would flood the lower levels of your house.

Ways to prevent a basement flood

There are ways to prevent your basement from flooding to begin with:

  1. Gutters need to be cleaned and maintained regularly. They can get clogged or even damaged without you even noticing. If the gutters are kept clean and in good condition, there would be proper drainage of water during rains
  2. After rainfall or storms, ensure that the gutters aren’t overflowing
  3. Check the downspout for any sort of clogging or damage regularly. If you find a damaged downspout, repair or replace it as soon as possible
  4. Ensure that your pavement is sloped in such a manner that water flows away from the house and not towards it

These and some other precautions can lessen the likelihood of flooding in the basement. There are times when flooding can’t be helped. In such cases, you need to hire a professional to help you.

Water Damage In Your Home or Business? Contact the professionals here at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County. 

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County also proudly serves Spencer, Henry and Trimble Counties. 

 

Preventing Frozen Pipes and Water Damage

1/24/2019 (Permalink)

PREVENTING WATER DAMAGE FROM FROZEN PIPES

Freezing temperatures can result in frozen pipes. When water freezes it expands, creating pressure on its container. As a direct result, unprotected and uninsulated plastic or metal pipes can burst and potentially cause extensive water damage. It’s been reported that a 1/8-inch crack in a pipe can release up to 250 gallons of water per day, causing flooding, serious structural damage, and the potential for mold growth. There are 4 things that you can do to prevent frozen pipes and 4 things you can do to minimize damage in the event that you already have frozen pipes.

4 Things You Can Do to Help Prevent Frozen Pipes

  1. Locate water supply lines that are susceptible to freezing, including those in a basement, crawl space, attic, garage, or under kitchen and bathroom cabinets. Insulate both hot and cold water pipes in these areas.  Water that is not flowing in a hot water supply line can freeze as easily as a cold water supply line.  One option is to allow water to trickle through the pipe so it won’t freeze.
  2. Install insulation that is designed to surround exposed pipes. Heat tape or thermostatically controlled heat cables can also be used to wrap pipes. You should only use products that are approved and designed for this purpose. Closely follow all manufacturers’ installation and operation instructions.
  3. Remove, drain, and store hoses used outdoors. This will help prevent the freezing of water in the hose and hose bib that can result in pressure on the fitting. If you have inside valves that supply the outdoor hose bibs shut them off and open the outside hose bibs to allow water to drain. Keep the outside valve open so that any water remaining in the pipe can expand without causing the pipe to break.
  4. If you are leaving the property for an extended period of time during cold weather, you might consider the following:
    1. Be sure that the HVAC system is working properly
    2. Do not set your thermostat lower than 55°F,
    3. Open doors to cabinets where the plumbing is located to allow heat to get to the water supply lines and drain, or
    4. Shut off and drain the water system. However, if you have a fire suppression system in your house, it may be deactivated when you shut off the water.

4 Things You Can Do to Minimize Damage from Frozen Pipes
If your pipes are frozen:

  • Turn on your faucet and if nothing comes out, leave the faucet turned on and call a plumber.
  • If your pipes are insulated, remove the insulation to allow the room heat to get to the pipe(s).
  • Don’t try to thaw a pipe with a blowtorch, kerosene or propane heater, charcoal stove, or other open flame device. Water damage is preferable to fire damage!
  • You can use a hair dryer to thaw a frozen pipe starting as close to the faucet as possible, working back toward the fitting at the wall.

If pipes burst:

  • Turn off the water at the main shutoff valve in the house.
  • Do not operate electrical tools or appliances in standing water.
  • Leave the water faucets turned on.
  • call a qualified Restoration Company and a plumber.

Water Damage In Your Home Or Business? Contact the professionals here at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County today. 502.241.6861

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby also proudly serves Spencer, Henry and Trimble Counties.

Fire Damage Cleaning And Your Property

1/8/2019 (Permalink)

The first and most important thing to look for when choosing a fire damage restoration company is a swift emergency response. What this essentially means is that the company should be available 24 hours a day and ready to come out in a hurry to help you repair and restore your home.

 It’s very important that you find fire damage cleaning companies that offer to come out quickly because it’s only that way that you can avoid further damage being caused to your premises. If you have a hole in your roof for instance, in your wall or even in a pipe, this can lead to water damage that will build up until addressed.

While it is the job of the fire department to help  put out fires in your building, it is the fire damage restoration company that will help secure your home with emergency board up if necessary.

Assessment

Once the company has seen your property and helped to prevent further damage, their next job will be to assess the extent of the damage and develop a of plan of action. This is an important step as it will be what enables them to give you some kind of timeline for the reparations as well as an expected price quote.

The key thing to remember here is that not all the damage to your property will be visible damage. Smoke can cause odor problems and damage in adjacent rooms and other areas that were directly affected by the fire and Restoration companies should identify the extent of this damage and then decide how involved the repair is going to be.

Removal and Disposal

Fire damage restoration companies will often offer removal and disposal services and this is one of the things they will do first when they start addressing the damage to your premises. Here, the intention is to remove your items that might be ‘beyond saving’. If something has been completely engulfed in smoke or if the fire has burned it to a cinder, then it will need to be disposed of. In these cases, it’s always useful to have the help of a fire damage restoration company when it comes to dragging your items out and disposing of them in an eco-friendly manner. This may also involve the removal of furniture, cabinets, countertops and other fittings.

Drying

You might wonder why a restorationcompany would ever need to dry anything. In fact, though, this is necessary due to the fact that fires can lead to burst pipes, tanks, and water mains as well as leaving your property exposed to the elements.

In some cases, you might have large amounts of standing water and in those cases, these companies will need to pump the water away with submersible pumps – often while attached to trucks.

Next up, the surfaces will be thoroughly dried and moisture may be removed from the air using dehumidifiers.

Cleaning

Next up, your fire damage restoration company will begin to clean your premises. This will involve removing any stains from smoke, soot or dust that results from the fire. As well, areas that came into contact with potentially contaminated water will also need to be thoroughly cleaned and sanitized. This process also needs to carefully remove any odors that can otherwise linger following a fire.

Restoration and Remodeling

Once everything is clean, dry and sanitized, your fire damage restoration company can then begin actually making repairs and restoring your premises. The very best fire damage cleaning companies will actually be capable of offering the full range of remodeling services, thus meaning that they can repaint your walls, install new carpets, fix cabinets where possible, replace dry wall and more.

All this will help you to get your home looking not just as good as new but potentially even better.

 

Importance of Keeping Rain Gutters Clear of Leaves

11/12/2018 (Permalink)

Fall is a beautiful season. The cooler weather gives relief from the summer heat and the leaves beautifully update the outdoor color pallet from green to red, orange, yellow and of course, many hues in between. Fall is the beginning of the holidays and creates a family atmosphere of warmth and all things pumpkin spice. And while fall can certainly be a favorite season, with the aesthetics of the outdoors often comes rain and wind. The combination of rain and leaves can wreak havoc on your gutters.  Although a huge necessity for the protection of your home a Gutters main purpose is to control the flow of rainwater protecting against potential damage to your roof, walls, foundation, and landscape.

Gutters are essential and maintenance is imperative. If your gutters are neglected you may find yourself dealing with some harsh water damage or flooding. Here are some of the issues that can be caused by neglected, clogged gutters and drains:

  1. Roof Damage

    Fall has its fair share of storms, high winds, and rain. Therefore the trees lose their leaves at an increased rate causing them to often land directly in or on your gutters. This results in clogging, meaning if you clear the leaves allowing the water to drain properly then the water has no place to go. Standing water anywhere is never a good thing and when it’s in your gutters it can actually cause soggy roof edges. The edge of your roof then becomes at risk and its underlying materials can become damaged. Eventually, the constant contact with the water will weaken materials, requiring costly replacements. When your roof is affected by water damage then it’s only a matter of time until it reaches your ceilings and eventually your walls. Simply setting up a ladder and pulling out loose leaves, could prevent a costly repair.

  2. Exterior Damage

    As mentioned before gutters are meant to pull water away from the home, but when there is an obstacle in the way of it doing its job rainwater will often spill over. The water spilling causes seepage into places that can’t withstand its effects. The overflowing water will begin to damage the exterior walls, windows, doors, and other, connected, structural aspects of your home. These areas of your house are not meant to come in contact with excessive water as rotting, warping, and structural weakening may happen.

  3. Damaged Foundation

    Having a strong foundation is vital for a structurally sound home. However, neglecting your gutters can easily shake your homes’ foundation. When there is an overabundance of water and it’s not directed away from your house then the foundation of your home is at risk to leakage issues, shifting, cracking and in extreme cases… sinkage. Your gutters lead the water toward your downspouts which are meant to bring water to a safe place where it is absorbed into the ground or directed into a drainage system. Homes with a  basement can be affected as the excessive water causes immense pressure against basement walls which could push inward and crack.

  4. Damage Causing Slippery Surfaces

    Fall may bring the rain and wetter weather, but winter comes shortly after so if you’ve neglected your gutters during the rainy season, winter may be unusually and exceedingly slippery. Water overflowing from gutters can fall onto walkways and driveways. When entryways are slippery it makes carrying in a handful of groceries a bit tricky. We are pretty sure no one wants their friends falling before even knocking on the door. Gutters left unattended can truly wreak havoc on a home and likely, a tailbone!

Maintaining Healthy Gutters

Now that you are aware of what neglected gutters can do to your home it’s best to clean debris from gutters at least twice a year, preferably after leaves have fallen and again in the spring. The best way to clean your gutters is to either call a professional or do it yourself by hand. It simply takes an extendable ladder, a small plastic scoop, a plastic tarp to protect your lawn, and a garden hose to flush out gutters and downspouts.

Fall may mean beautiful colors but it should also serve as a reminder to give your gutters
a little love and attention.

Water Damage In Your Home? Contact the professionals here at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County. 502.232.5213

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby also proudly serves Spencer, Henry and Trimble Counties. 

Tips to Avoid Water Damage In Your Home

10/25/2018 (Permalink)

Tips to Avoid Water Damage in Your Home

  • Examine your rain gutters and clear them of any debris or leaves. Make certain they are draining properly and have no place where water would build up inside.
  • Maintain the trees and vegetation outside your home. Inspect any landscaping near your utility pipes. You don’t want their roots to wrap around piping and break them. Remove shrubs and trees that have grown too big.
  • Inspect your roof and be certain that it is in good condition. If you find any cracked, curled or missing shingles then replace promptly.
  • Look through all your sink supply lines in your kitchen and bathrooms including showers and tubs. Tighten or fix all leaking drain pipes.
  • Check out your appliances every few weeks to be sure they have no leaks and function according to specified directions.
  • Upgrade the hoses of your washing machine. Brittle, leaky or old washing machine hoses are a common cause of water loss. Replace them regularly to avoid a big mess and costly damage.
  • Inspect the water pressure coming into your home. If it is set too high, your hoses and pipes could fail under the pressure. Purchase a water pressure gauge at a hardware store and attach it to an outside faucet. Then turn the faucet on all the way. You will get a reading from the gauge of your home’s water pressure. Average residential water systems are meant for 40 to 70 psi of water pressure. If it exceeds 100 psi, you should install a pressure regulator.
  • Set up water detection devices where a flood or leak is most likely to happen . This is a small electronic device that will sound an alarm when the sensor comes in contact with moisture. Install them near washing machines, toilets, water heaters, sump pumps and dishwashers.
  • Keep an eye on your water bill. If you see the usage of your water increases from one month to another without knowing why, you might have a leak somewhere. Don’t leave any mystery leads unchecked.

Water Damage in your home? Contact the professionals here at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County today. We are available 24/7 to assist you with the process. 502.241.6861

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County also proudly serves Spencer, Henry and Trimble Counties. 

Carpet Cleaning and Water Damage

10/11/2018 (Permalink)

If you experience water damage from a flood in your home, professional carpet cleaning will be an important step in the damage restoration process. The most effective method for restoring carpets after water damage is hot water extraction.

WHAT IS HOT WATER EXTRACTION?

You may have heard people use the terms “steam cleaning” and “hot water extraction” interchangeably. In reality, there is no steam involved in hot water extraction carpet cleaning. There are a few problems with steam cleaning, most notably, that steam can actually set some stains in. Further, steam cannot rinse detergent or special cleaning solutions as thoroughly from carpets as hot water can. For these reasons, hot water extraction is the most popular and most effective method for carpet cleaning.

The professional carpet cleaning process begins with a thorough vacuuming to remove any loose dirt and soil. Next, during hot water extraction, hot water and cleaning agents are injected into your carpet at high pressure and agitated with a specialized brush in order to loosen dirt and grime. A technician then removes the water, cleaning solution and dirt with a high-powered vacuum. This process may be repeated, depending on the extent of the damage. Anti-microbial treatments can also be included in the carpet cleaning process to prevent the growth and spread of mold, mildew, yeast and other allergens.

Hot water extraction carpet cleaning is not just part of a flood restoration process. Proactive annual cleanings are an important part of regular home maintenance and long-term carpet care.

WHEN IS CARPET CLEANING NOT ENOUGH?

Hot water extraction will not be effective in some flood restoration or water damage situations. In these cases, it is advisable to discard the carpet, pad, and any other porous items like upholstered furniture that have gotten wet. Cleaning methods like hot water extraction are not sufficient to remove pathogens from this type of water.

  • Exposure to raw sewage or “black water,” which is water that contains human waste
  • Damage to the subfloor, such as warped or swollen particle board or plywood
  • Structural damage below the carpet

If you’ve experienced water damage and you aren’t sure what’s salvageable and what isn’t, SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County is available to you 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, when you need service most. No matter what time of day, your call is sure to be answered by a customer service representative who will quickly send a qualified technician to assess the water damage and determine the best course of action.

Sewage Backup Should Be Cleaned Promptly

10/5/2018 (Permalink)

Waste No Time with Sewage Cleanup

Is your septic tank backed up? Sewage cleanup from a septic tank backup or clogged sewer line is a dirty job that a professional will need to finish. However, it’s never a bad idea to start cleaning up until your plumber arrives. Before you do, protect yourself from bacteria-ridden sewage by wearing rubber boots, gloves, and a mask.

  • Shovel solids into a heavy plastic bag and dispose in a trash receptacle.
  • Soak up liquid with paper towels or rags, and dispose in plastic bags.
  • Use a wet/dry vacuum for small areas or to suck up any remaining puddles. Unclog the drains before disposing of the contents.
  • Tape a path of plastic sheeting to the floor to avoid soiling other parts of the house.
  • Place all affected, damaged and undamaged outside to air out.
  • Throw out carpets and rugs.
  • Thoroughly mop the area with a solution of bleach and water mixed 1:1.

Only time will get rid of the odor. Open windows and use box fans and dehumidifiers to air out the area for up to a week, possibly two. SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County will do the sewage cleanup work for you, from pumping and wiping up to deodorizing and restoring carpets and floors, if possible.

Sewage 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.

   

Clogged Gutters Cause Water Damage

10/3/2018 (Permalink)

Clogged gutters cause water damage above-ground and below. Falling leaves in autumn may look poetic, however once they accumulate and obstruct roof runoff into your gutters and downspouts, a chain of events begins that could end with water infiltration into your home. Your roof sheds an enormous volume of water. A clogged, overflowing gutter in a rainstorm or during heavy snow-melt resembles a mini-Niagara Falls. The exterior walls or siding of your home are constructed to resist raindrops, not a continuous cascade from a blocked gutter overhead. Heavy runoff penetrates siding and infiltrates internal wall spaces. This may result in visible water damage to the interior of the house or covert damage inside the wall such as structural wood rot and mold growth. The deluge from an overflowing gutter also pounds the ground around the immediate perimeter of the house, saturating the soil and forming pools of water that soak deep into the earth, penetrating basement walls or seeping under the foundation.

Before clogged gutters cause water damage to your living, here are a few preventive measures:

  • Check and clean your gutters at regular intervals throughout the year, but especially during autumn when leaves are falling.
  • Consider installing gutter guards that screen out leaves and other debris while still admitting roof runoff.
  • To ensure adequate drainage and avoid overflows during heavy rains, you should have one downspout for every 40 feet of gutter length.
  • Make sure your gutters aren’t sagging. For optimum drainage into downspouts, gutters are installed with a slight pitch. Sagging disrupts proper gravity flow of water and triggers overflow.
  • Install downspout extensions that divert runoff far enough from the house to prevent penetration into the foundation or basement walls. Ideally, each downspout should discharge water at least three feet from the house. Downspouts can also be connected to an underground pipe to convey water even further away.

Water Damage as a result of clogged gutters? Contact the professionals here at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County. 502.241.6861

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County also proudly serves Spencer, Henry and Trimble Counties. 

Did You Know That Rodents Can Cause Water Damage?

9/27/2018 (Permalink)

A very common question our customers ask here at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby is how to prevent water damage. Most homeowner aren't aware that this can  be caused by pests and rodents chewing through plastic pipes. This is a huge problem for some homeowners, and unfortunately this question arises after the damage has already been done and they've called us to help clean up the problem. However, if you have plastic/pvc piping throughout your house, you can take precautions today to prevent rodents from chewing through the pipes and causing water damage.

PLASTIC HOSES AND PESTS: 

Finding out you have rodents or other critters living in your home can be an unsettling discovery. Mice and rats are dangerous because they can bite, bring fleas and disease into your home, along with creating a toxic environment by defecating and urinating within the walls. But they also pose another danger; an ability to chew through plastic water pipes in hard-to-reach places.

RODENTS AND WATER PIPE DAMAGE

 The damage from rodents chewing through water pipes can be substantial and can occur either over time, or as one big "flood."

When damage is slow, a small amount of water will continuously seep in spaces within the walls, causing buildup of toxic mold and rotting of wooden beams. Drip by drip, the damage can accumulate over weeks into a problem that can cost thousands of dollars to fix.

 

In other cases, mice and rats can chew through water pipes that are already weak and worn out. Because the pipe is already fragile, the rodent damage can cause the pipe to burst, with large amounts of water damage occurring quickly.

HOW TO STOP WATER DAMAGE FROM RODENTS

The good news is that by taking a few preventative measures, you can keep rodents from chewing through your water pipes.

1. Provide a Water Source: If you suspect there are rodents living in your house, a good idea is to provide an easily accessible water source for them. At first, this sounds counter-intuitive. However, by providing them an easy to find water source (such as a dog bowl) temporarily while trying to exterminate them, this will help you remove their motivation to chew through the pipes to find water.

This is especially important if you're using poison to kill the rodents, because poison dehydrates them. As they're dying, they will go to extreme measures to find a water source and the mice or rats will quickly chew even through metal water pipes to get to water, not to mention plastic pipes. By giving them an easy accessible water source, you'll significantly reduce chances of damage as the poison takes time to work.

2. Use Traps Instead of Poison: Another approach to reduce damage to plastic pipes is to use rodent traps instead of poison. Traps will catch and kill the rodent, so the animal won't go through the dehydration phase involved in poisoning. When combined with an easy to access water source, you can get rid of the pests without pushing them to work their way around the water pipe system.  3. Seal Rodent Entryways: Rodents will get into your house through even the smallest holes in the structure. And if they need to, they'll chew a hole to get in. To reduce this possibility, inspect the outside of your home and the roof for any holes that may be present. Seal off even the smallest openings, as the bones in rodents' skulls are generally not fused together, which allows them to squeeze through even the tiniest openings.

4. If you have a crawl space, inspect it as well, and seal up any holes.

DEALING WITH WATER DAMAGE FROM RODENTS

If you experience water damage from rodents chewing through plastic pipes, it's important to address the problem quickly with the help of an expert who can guide you through the proper steps. We've assisted many clients in such situations and can help you, too with our 24/7/365 emergency response team!

If you have experienced water damage due to rodents chewing water pipes, call SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County today. 502.241.6861

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby also proudly serves Spencer, Henry and Trimble Counties. 

Water Damage and Appliance Failure

9/18/2018 (Permalink)

Certain home appliances are known for failures that will eventually lead to property damage. Common appliances such as water heaters, washing machines, and dishwashers require regular maintenance but rarely receive the attention they need to avoid busted pipes, leaks, and other problems that result in water damage.

Avoid major property repairs by knowing what to look for and how to protect your home. Here’s how to respond quickly to appliance failures in your home.

Turn Off Main Water Supply

Before addressing the appliance directly, you’ll have to shut off the main water supply to your home. There are two types of valves: the main or master valve, which stops the flow to the entire home, and individual or supply valves that connect to specific appliances or fixtures. Look for the main water valve and turn it off.

If the valve has a round handle, turn it clockwise to stop the flow. If the valve is a lever, turn the handle perpendicular to the actual water line.

Some appliances have a supply valve located near the water line going to the unit. If this is easier to get to first, turn it off; however, you’ll still want to find the main water supply and shut it off, too.

Memorize where these important water valves are and how to turn them on and off. This will reduce the amount of damage if something goes unexpectedly wrong.

Dishwashers and Refrigerators

There are two appliances in the kitchen that can cause water damage: dishwashers and refrigerators.

Dishwashers have a hot water line that’s more prone to leaks near or at the connection, a door gasket that should remain tight, and a drain that must remain clear.

Also, keep an eye on the float switch. This important mechanism tells the dishwasher to stop filling with water. A broken switch can quickly lead to water damage.

Look for specific manufacture information behind the dishwasher’s toe plate or behind the front panel. Always review the safety information before working with home appliances.

To avoid property damage:

  • Periodically check for leaks under the sink where hoses connect to the water supply.
  • Annually look around the base of each appliance for leaks, discoloration, warped flooring materials, or water damage to nearby cabinets.
  • If your refrigerator has an ice maker, make sure the hose connection is securely attached to the water supply line.

Washing Machine

Washing machine failures are common when regular maintenance falls to the wayside. The hot and cold-water hoses, for example, need to be replaced every four to five years, even if they look like they are in good shape. These hoses are subject to damage if a washing machine vibrates violently or moves during a wash cycle.

If you’re dealing with a washer malfunction, locate the supply value and turn the water flow off. If you can’t find the supply valve, locate the main water valve and shut that off.

When caught early, a washing machine failure doesn’t have to be a major disaster. But if you’re not at home when disaster strikes, overflow can cause serious damage, especially if the washer is located on a second or third floor.

If there’s more water than towels or a Wet Vac can handle, call the experts at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County for immediate relief.

Call SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County at 502-241-6861 for water damage relief 24/7.

Clothes Dryer

Cleaning out a dryer’s lint trap after each load is not enough to keep the ductwork completely clean and clear. Clogged air vents and ductwork can lead to dryer inefficiency and could also start a fire.

Again, second-floor appliances pose other risks: longer duct-work can trap lint rather than appropriately venting it out of the home, which can increase the chances of accidental ignition.

To avoid property damage:

  • Once a month, use your vacuum’s smallest attachment to suction the lint slot.
  • Once a year, unplug the dryer, disconnect the vent tube and vacuum it out.
  • If your dryer doesn’t vent directly outside, consider hiring a professional duct cleaner.

Water Heater

Short of fire, nothing causes more damage to a property than a busted water heater. Water heaters hold and continuously transfer water from the time of instillation to replacement or failure. This results in normal sediment buildup in pipes, fixtures, and the tank itself, which can lead to massive failure if not maintained.

Water heaters should be drained once a year to eliminate sediment build up on the bottom of the tank. Follow your owner’s manual for best instruction on how to perform this maintenance.

Check the area around the bottom of the tank periodically. When a water heater’s bottom becomes corroded, the whole tank may give out causing a deluge of continuously running water.

If you notice a leak, call for service or replacement immediately. A small leak can turn into a sudden flood without warning.

Toilet

Toilets commonly cause water damage if the wax seal on the bottom wears out or the inlet hose develops a leak. The hoses used for the cold-water inlet are normally strong, but you should check the connecting ends for leakage at least once a year.

Toilets don’t normally flood a home; however, a leak can still cause serious damage. By checking the seal and water connection regularly, home owners can reduce the chances of a leak significantly.

Appliance Failure

Don’t let appliance failures cause additional stress. Keep up on regular maintenance and fix issues early and often.

As with all water damage, mitigating the problem quickly will help prevent costly repairs and possibly mold or wood rot. Unfortunately, time isn’t always on your side when disaster strikes, and you’ll need to call professionals to fix the problem.

Water 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. 

Avoiding Water Damage By Keeping Your Drains Clear

9/6/2018 (Permalink)

One of the more common and recurring household issues is clogged drains. Everyone has experienced one, from the pool of water in the shower to the floating dishes in the sink; a clogged drain can be a definite nuisance. Luckily, keeping your drains cleared is easy to do and today we'll explain how. The key to keeping your drains clear is being mindful of what goes down them. Here are a few do’s and don’ts for your homes sinks and showers.

The Sink

Make sure to run water while using the garbage disposal. This will help food maneuver through the blades without getting hung up. If you don’t have a garbage disposal, make sure to use a strainer to catch large food items that can cause clogged drains. Never pour grease, fat or cooking oil down the drain. In cold temperatures, grease, fat and cooking oil can expand and cause a pipe to bust. A sink strainer is a simple and inexpensive way to stop drain clogs

The Shower

No matter how hard you may try, avoiding the dreaded hair clog is almost impossible. Using a strainer similar to what is used in a sink can help stop hair clogs from forming in your shower drain. Another culprit of the clog is small, used bars of soap. A small sliver of soap can turn a minor hair clog into a serious one. What’s the solution? Open a new bar of soap earlier and make sure to throw out the old one.

The Toilet

Many people, especially the young ones, treat the toilet like a trash can. That’s a surefire way to end up with the most dreaded of all clogs, the backed up toilet. Make sure to only flush bathroom tissue down the toilet. Things like facial tissues, paper towels and feminine products can cause serious clogs. Nothing should go in the toilet but toilet paper. Make sure your little ones know!

Tools to Keep on Hand

Drains are simple problems and usually require a simple solution. Most of the times a product like Draino will make short work of a even the most stubborn hair clogs. A plunger is usually all you’ll need for a simple toilet clog and they are very easy to use. However, you may need more than a plunger, depending on what’s down there. Always keep a plunger on hand in case a clog comes up.

Keeping your drains clear is easily done when you follow a few simple rules. Repairing a clogged drain is simple enough but can be a bit more involved. In those situations, you’ll need the help of a professional.

Water Damage as a result of a clogged drain? Contact the professionals here at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County. 502.241.6861

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County also proudly serves Spencer, Henry and Trimble Counties.

How Do Dehumidifiers Work?

9/4/2018 (Permalink)

Dehumidification

Humidity is the amount of water vapor in the air. The ability of the air to carry water vapor increases with the increase in air temperature. In water damage restoration, we are most concerned with the relative humidity. The relative humidity will help determine how quickly materials dry. It relates to how much more water the air can hold at a given temperature. Warm air will holds more moisture than cold air. If we take a column of air that has a relative humidity of 50%, and raise the temperature 10 degrees, the relative humidity will decrease.

More than any other factor, the relative humidity helps control the rate of evaporation. Because relative humidity increases as the air temperature decreases, a low temperature will result in less evaporation. In a cold environment, evaporation will be low.

A flooded room with 100% relative humidity will never dry, no matter how many dryers you have running. When the air is at 100% humidity, the same amount of water that evaporates from the carpet will fall back into the carpet. In order to dry materials in this environment, we have to reduce the relative humidity.

There are several methods to remove the water vapor from the air. If you live in an area where the humidity is extremely low, you would open all the windows. Since humidity always seeks to balance itself, it will leave the building. If you don’t live in a low humidity environment, use a dehumidifier. A dehumidifier is a machine that removes moisture from the air. As it reduces the humidity, the walls, floors, carpet and pad dry at a much faster rate. In basements or natural flood situations, it is a must, for without one, the dryers merely circulate warm, moist air, and little or no drying takes place.

Dehumidifiers remove high humidity from the room, and the dry air will pull moisture from floors, pad, walls, and carpet.

Dehumidifiers

Dehumidifiers work by passing moist air over cold coils. When the saturated air passes by the coils, the air temperature is reduced to the saturation point. The moisture then condenses on the coils and runs into a collector bucket. It is a very simple process and acts just the same as when you have a cold drink and the water condenses on the glass. A portable, high capacity refrigerant dehumidifier can remove about 5 gallons in 24 hours and reduce the humidity to 40% at 80 degrees F.

Principles of Drying

Given any drying situation, there are three factors that can be managed for fast successful drying: temperature, air movement and humidity control.

AIRFLOW CIRCULATION – Turbo Dryers are designed to deliver a high volume laminar airflow over or under wet surfaces for speed drying. Airflow speeds the rate of evaporation, helps prevent mold growth, and reduces the risk of secondary damage. Circulating air speeds evaporation by moving the “boundary layer” of saturated air that hangs near wet surfaces. The moist air is whisked away and replaced with dryer air.

MOISTURE CONDITION -The moisture condition of carpet, cushion, flooring and walls along with other structural materials and contents.

HUMIDITY CONTROL – Using Turbo Dryers to speed the rate of evaporation in an enclosed area can cause humidity to escalate. As humidity elevates, air movers become less effective and the rate of drying slows. It is vital that Turbo Dryers be used with adequate dehumidification. For safety, indoor humidity should not exceed 60% Rh. For maximum drying porous materials, indoor humidity should be maintained below 45% Rh. This may require the use of Dehumidifiers. Even lower humidity between 25-40% Rh is helpful for drying saturated, dense materials such as walls and floors.

Drying Procedures

It is possible to dry both the stretched in carpet and synthetic cushion at the same time on many flood jobs. Turbo Dryers are used to force air under the carpet so that a cushion of air floats the carpet off the floor. Along with humidity control, the high volume airflow will usually dry most carpet, cushion, and flooring.

When hardwood flooring is present under wet carpet, strong consideration should be given to removing carpet for drying. Consideration should also be given to removing water damaged carpet cushion when it has a non-porous plastic “skin”, when it shows signs of severe wear or in contaminated situations.

Drying Out Your Home

Floodwaters affect a house in 3 ways:

  • The water damages materials. Wallboard will disintegrate if it stays wet for too long; wood can swell, warp, or rot; electrical parts can short out, malfunction, and cause fires or shock.
  • Mud, silt, and unknown contaminants in the water not only get everything dirty; they are also unhealthy.
  • Dampness promotes the growth of mildew, a mold or fungus that can grow on everything.

Dry the Ceilings, Walls & Floors

Flood-soaked wallboard should be removed and thrown away. Plaster and paneling can often be saved, but you still need to get air circulating in the wall cavities to dry the studs and sills. Different approaches are used for different materials.

WALLBOARD – If dirty floodwaters soaked the wallboard at least 4 feet above the floor, take down all the wallboard and replace it. If the water was less than 4 feet deep, remove the lower 4 feet of wallboard. You can fill the gap with new 4ft x 8ft wallboard sheets installed sideways. If you have Styrofoam insulation-or no insulation-and the wallboard was soaked with clean rainwater, you can dry the walls without removing the wallboard b using the technique explained below for plaster walls. But you will need to remove wet insulation if it is not Styrofoam.

PLASTER WALLS – If the plaster or wallboard is clean and in good shape, you can drill or cut ventilating holes in each wall cavity. Place holes low enough so they will be covered by the baseboard after the wall dries out. Open up the wall on both sides of interior walls. For exterior walls, drill or cut holes only on the inside of the house. However, if there is wet insulation, you will have to remove the plaster or wallboard in order to take out all the insulation.

CONCRETE BLOCK – The cavities in a concrete block wall will drain on their own. The water will not damage the concrete like it will wood or wallboard.

WALL COVERING – Vinyl wall covering seals the wall and keeps it from drying out. Wallpaper paste is also a favorite home for mold and mildew. For these reasons, you should remove all wall covering that got wet and throw it out. (If vinyl wall covering is loose on the bottom, you may be able to save it by pulling it off the wall up to the flood level. Clean and reapply it after everything dries.)

PANELING – Carefully pry the bottom of each panel away from the wall. Use something to hold the bottom away from the sill so the cavities can drain and dry out. You can nail them back into shape after they and the studs dry out. However, if there is wet insulation, you will have to remove the paneling in order to take out all the insulation.

FLOOR – Air needs to move around flooded floors so they can dry out. This usually means that you must remove the floor covering.

Because floodwaters contain mud and dirt, most soaked floor coverings should be thrown away. Keep a piece of all discarded floor covering so the adjuster can tell its value.

Air needs to circulate below the floor to dry it out. If the crawlspace of your house is flooded, pump it out. Remove any plastic sheets, vapor barriers, or insulation from underneath the floor. (Be sure to replace them when the floor and foundation are completely dry.)

If a house with a basement was flooded over the first floor, remove finished basement ceilings, or cut or drill homes between the joists to allow circulation. Don’t cut or drill near electric lines or pipes

Cleaning Floor Coverings

  • Small throw rugs can be saved and cleaned in a washing machine. Indoor/Outdoor carpeting can be hosed off and hung up to dry.
  • Large area rugs and any rug with foam backing should be cleaned professionally with a high power extraction machine before mildew has a chance to set in.
  • A wall-to-wall carpet that was soaked should be cleaned professionally with a high power extraction machine before mildew has a chance to set in.
  • Remove tile, vinyl, or linoleum flooring if it is warped, loose, or has a foam-runner pad (which should be thrown away).

Water Damage In Your Home Or Business? Contact the professionals here at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County. 502.241.6861

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County also proudly serves Spencer, Henry and Trimble Counties. 

Tips To Prevent HVAC Water Damage

8/28/2018 (Permalink)

Water damage is never fun to deal with. It can go unnoticed for weeks, or even months before you even realize it’s time to do something. Also, your home’s air conditioning unit has the potential to cause water damage to your home. The good news is preventing HVAC water damage is relatively easy. With proper maintenance, everything is a breeze. Here are ways to prevent HVAC water damage from happening.

1. Change your HVAC filter regularly

Do this at least once a month to help prevent the unit from overworking. This way, you can avoid freezing and defrosting on the evaporator coils that lead to water damage. Choose high-efficiency particulate air filters, but you should also check the instructions manual to know what type is best for your unit.

2. Maintain the condensation drain line

Check the condensation line opening when your AC unit is running and make sure you can see water flowing down the drain. Flush the drain with an algae inhibitor and if it is already clogged, attach a wet/dry vacuum to the drain line to suck the clog out. The emergency drain line should be properly connected and installed. Lastly, ensure the pipe is oriented correctly.

3. Install a condensation pump

A condensation pump will help excess water flow into the proper disposal drain. You may also install a safety float switch to automatically shut down the power to the AC unit whenever condensation builds up, and there is a risk of water overflow.

4. Have your HVAC system inspected professionally

Homeowners may find it difficult to inspect and maintain HVAC so hiring a professional would be your best bet to get the best out of your unit.

Water Damage In Your Home or Business? Contact the professionals here at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County. 502.241.6861

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County proudly serves Spencer, Henry and Trimble Counties. 

Definitive Signs That Your Sprinkler System Is Leaking

8/9/2018 (Permalink)

Your sprinkler system was installed to help you save time, money, as well as energy. So what happens if it begins to leak? How would you even notice since the main components of the system are buried under the lawn?

A leak can cost you a ton of money. Not only can it increase your water bill, but it may also cause damage to your lawn, landscaping, or concrete. To keep an eye out, it’s important to understand the signs that indicate a leak has occurred. Here are the top signs that your sprinkler has sprung a leak and what you can do about it.

The grass is unusually wet.

When you walk through your lawn on a non-rainy day, do you feel squishing under your feet? If so, this isn’t normal and probably indicates a leak. You might notice more around the sprinkler valves or areas where important connections are buried. This could  manifest as wet grass, but you may also see bubbling from the ground.

The concrete is wet. 

If it hasn’t rained and you see a wet spot on your concrete walkways or patio, it very well could indicate a leak from your sprinklers. If it can’t be explained rationally, it might be time to contact a professional to get a better understanding of what’s going on underground. Excess water can damage concrete over time, so getting it repaired quickly will save you a huge headache in the end. If you think this might just be a case of over watering, you might also want to look into getting a smart sprinkler controller.

Erosion near your sprinkler heads. 

Something you might not spot right away is erosion near the sprinkler heads. If it looks like the ground is caving in or something has been digging around the sprinklers, it probably isn’t squirrels or a neighborhood dog. Check for a leak and contact a professional to take a closer look.

Unexplainable fungus growth. 

Another indicator of too much moisture due to a leak is fungus. Are there mushrooms around your system? Or growing on the base of trees that might be near buried lines? Mushrooms aren’t natural in a suburban or landscaped environment and are a sure sign that something isn’t quite right with your system.

Your water bill has spiked. 

Of course, your primary indication may not be physical at all. If you noticed that your water bill has increased significantly, you’ll need to look at a number of factors. Providing your daily use hasn’t spiked for an explainable reason, it could be your sprinkler. Rule out any issues within the home, such as a leak in your plumbing, toilet, dishwasher, or washing machine. If those seem normal, check out your sprinkler system for the culprit.

The Most Water Resistant Flooring

7/27/2018 (Permalink)

Whether it’s your child, a pet, or a leaky ice maker line, when a spill happens, many of us instantly think about whether or not water damage will ensue. Quality water-resistant flooring will go a long way in easing some of those fears and giving you some peace of mind. When flooring isn’t water-resistant you could find yourself navigating the perils of warping, mildew, mold and wood rot.

Here are 5 top Flooring choices that are not only water-resistant but add the benefit of beauty to your home.

  1. Vinyl Flooring

    The big trend right now for home interiors is the traditional hardwood throughout the house. One of the best vinyl flooring options available is the WPC. WPC stands for Wood Plastic Composite, this specific type of vinyl offers a beautifully rich and expensive wood look. WPC vinyl flooring is high quality, extremely durable, and has a range of textures and colors. The extreme durability of this type of flooring comes from the four layers it is comprised of: The backing layer; the WPC core – which is where the waterproofing comes in as this layer is solid and will not ripple, swell or peel; the printed vinyl layer is the piece that brings the beauty, the available images can give an identical look of natural wood, stone and much more. This is the layer fools many into believing it’s the real thing. The last layer, the Wear Layer, is the protector, it keeps your floors free from dents and scratches etc. The thicker the wear layer the better protected your floor will be.

    Vinyl flooring is like a superhero that protects your home from unwanted wet shoes as your children run in after a rainy day or from the gallon of milk that was accidentally spilled when pouring a cup. This vinyl flooring is 100% waterproof, realistic looking, resilient and offers low maintenance. High-quality vinyl is not only waterproof features mold and mildew inhibitors as well. Vinyl is a great water protection option for your home. Prices certainly vary and the higher quality you go, the higher the price can climb.

  2. Ceramic and Porcelain Tile Flooring

    Ceramic and porcelain tile flooring is a beautiful option and mostly found in bathrooms. This type of flooring is often used in bathrooms because its surface is comprised of a durable glaze that keeps all liquids out. It leaves no room for water to seep through. Therefore, this flooring is 100% waterproof. This type of flooring is an oldie but a goodie and does its job well. It is very easy to clean which is nice if you have children or animals in the home. Tile may be one of the oldest flooring options out there, but it stands strong against its younger opponents, as it can look equally attractive and appealing to the eye. It can come in mosaic and decorative styles or it can come in more natural looking options which mimic wood and stone. Ceramic and porcelain tiles durable, with low to no maintenance and a home that is worry-free from water damage. One downfall is that this type of flooring can be cold underfoot because it doesn’t retain heat as well, therefore it may be best for homes with warmer environments.

  3. Laminate Flooring

    Laminate is commonly confused with vinyl but what you must know, is that vinyl is naturally resistant to water and laminate can be susceptible to moisture. However, with that said, manufacturers are creating waterproof counterparts based on consumer demand. Laminate, regardless of the original, maintains a good reputation because it is popular when looking for a faux wood flooring option without the sticker shock or real wood. Laminate can be so convincing that often times people can’t tell the difference. Waterproof laminate is high quality and offers a great resale value to a home. Laminate is not only an easy installation but requires very little maintenance as it’s easy to clean and keep looking nice. A few downfalls to this specific waterproof flooring lie in its late arrival to the waterproof arena, it tends to be on the pricier side and there aren’t as many options to choose from.

  4. Engineered Wood

    Engineered wood is beautiful and truly looks like the real thing because the top layer is real wood. If you desire natural wood in a bathroom or other high moisture area, engineered wood is certainly the way to go. This type of flooring has a plywood base that helps stand against moisture. Engineered wood works well in high moisture areas because of its dimensional stability. This flooring material, unfortunately, won’t stand against intense water but it will do its job when a spill occurs.

  5. Concrete or Stone Flooring

    Concrete, when it is sealed properly, is amazing at fighting against water. It is popular for basements and garages, however, it can be a beautiful alternative for a bathroom or kitchen. Concrete is very hard and strong, it stands strong against water, scratches, and dents. This amazing type of material can have added dyes and etching that truly allows your home to make a unique statement. However concrete, even with its low maintenance, can be hard underfoot and may be uncomfortable for sensitive feet. Cracking can also be a possibility over time.

    Natural stone is another beautiful look that brings durability and is truly pleasing to the eye. In fact, stone flooring tends to have a great resale value. Stone can be a bit slippery but texturing it with sandblasting can mitigate that issue, however, this type of flooring material does tend to be on the more expensive side.

Choosing the right type of flooring for your home is about more than beauty, it’s about peace of mind, ease of maintenance, and the right cost/benefit equation. Take some time to make the right choice for your home and save yourself the instant worry when those inevitable accidents happen.

Water Damage In Your Home? Contact the professionals here at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County. 502.241.6861

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County also proudly serves Spencer, Henry and Trimble Counties. 

Flooding

7/10/2018 (Permalink)

Flooding is an overflowing of water onto land that is normally dry. Floods can occur during heavy rains, when snow melts too fast, or when rivers overflow. Flooding could happen with only a few inches of water, or it may cover a house to the rooftop. Floods are the most common and widespread of all weather-related natural disasters.

How Does Rain Water Enter a Home?

Rainwater can seep into your home from cracks in your foundation – large or small, windows that are not sealed correctly and landscaping that is sloped toward the home.

Make sure all your concrete – driveways, sidewalks, patios and walkways slope either away from the house or into a drain. Check to make sure that rain gutters are clean and functioning properly to carry rainwater away from your home. It is imperative that downspouts drain at least 10 feet from the foundation of your house. Clogged gutters can also lead to water spilling over the top and that water can end up directly on the foundation of your house.

Keeping an eye on your home inside and out can be beneficial to noticing potential issues and could save you thousands in water damage remediation.

Flood Damage Can Be Fixed

It is important to recognize the signs of flooding so that the water can be extracted and any further damage can be prevented. Rainwater flooding that is not taken care of quickly and efficiently can cause black mold (this can form within two days after flooding occurs), furniture damage (moisture seeps into the furniture, which provides an ideal habitat for mildew, mold and fungi), and damage to the ceiling tiles, drywall, and flooring.

If you notice any of the signs of rainwater flooding in your home, instead of dealing with the trouble on your own, call the professional team at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County to assist you. 502.241.6861

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County also proudly serves Spencer, Henry and Trimble Counties. 

    

Can Laminate or Engineered Flooring Be Restored After Water Damage?

6/27/2018 (Permalink)

The answer for the most part is, NO (depending on how much water has affected the floor of course)

If enough water has spilled on your floor it will begin to soak through the joints as well as the edges of the walls, thus getting underneath the flooring. If water has seeped underneath the flooring then it will most likely not be restorable.

The reason for this is the lack of air-flow or drying that can be applied under the floor which makes it not able to dry fast enough on its own. The water beneath will soak into the flooring material and you will start to see surface damage such as cupping. 

Engineered and laminate flooring is commonly installed with a vapor barrier or cushion underneath. This vapor barrier is a plastic sheeting that makes it very difficult for water to evaporate and it ends up just getting trapped. There is little even a professional restorer can do to restore these flooring types, mainly due to the vapor barrier beneath the flooring, as no drying method would be effective enough.

Of course this will depend on the severity of your water damage situation. If the damage is just a small puddle or spillage then there is no need to start ripping up the flooring. However if water is squishing out of the edges of the floor when you walk on it then it is more than likely you will be needing a floor replacement.

When it comes to wet hardwood flooring (solid, true hardwood) the answer is YES, the flooring can be restored after being water damaged.

Solid hardwood flooring as you may have guessed is made of solid hardwood throughout and is made with a special set of grooves underneath it, called flutes. These grooves allow for the wood to naturally expand and contract. This enables airflow movement underneath the flooring, which allows for the professional restorer to dry the floor properly.

Through the use of specialty drying equipment such as the “dri-ease mat drying system” a property restoration company can save and restore your expensive hardwood flooring.

Once the moisture levels in the hardwood has been restored back to acceptable levels you can begin to repair or refinish any surface damages that may have occurred during the flooding.

So there you have it, now you know what to expect when you find yourself with water damaged flooring. The trick is always to act immediately and clean up any water mess as soon as possible so that it doesn’t soak in and spread further than it has to.

Water Damage In Your Home Or Business? Contact the professionals here at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County. 502.241.6861

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County also proudly serves Spencer, Henry and Trimble Counties. 

Malfunctioning Appliances and Water Damage

6/21/2018 (Permalink)

It always seems to be the nightmare of homeowners, the dreaded leaking appliance.  The problem with appliances is there can be a leak in the back or bottom that isn't visible and results in serious water damage. You may think your washing machine, refrigerator, dishwasher, and garbage disposals are your friend but they can also betray you if you’re not careful. Here are a few tips to keep water damage at bay.

Maintenance

The lifespan of appliances can really come down to the care that you give them. If you are hard on your appliances they will malfunction sooner than later. Once a machine wears out, it is ripe for leaks and water damage. Maintenance can look like a lot of different things. Ensuring you don’t overload your washing machine will help it last longer. Making sure your refrigerator doors stay closed as much as possible in the summer will make it easier for it to stay at a low temperature. This also means having your machines repaired by a professional when you notice it is having difficulty functioning.

Update

No matter how good you are to your appliances, they all have a lifespan. Once that lifespan is coming to an end your appliances can quickly produce more complex problems than simply deciding on a new model. Old machines can become invisible sprinklers. Once the waterworks begin, the cost of replacing the machine quickly becomes more expensive. It goes from the cost of a machine to the cost of repairing water damage plus purchasing a new machine. To avoid this unpleasant situation know how old your appliances are and the average lifespan for that make and model. When it hits that mark and starts acting its age, immediately begin the search for a new appliance.

Be Aware

Sometimes it doesn’t matter if you maintain your appliances and they are still fairly new. Machines break down. That is why it is so important to be aware and keep a watchful eye on your appliances. By watching how your appliances are performing, you can catch a problem before it becomes a big problem. Notice when your appliances make new noises, are having trouble cleaning things or staying cold, or begins dripping. Watching and noticing can mean the difference between a little and a lot of water damage. 

Appliances are in our houses to make our life easier. They wash our clothes and dishes for us and keep our food at the right temperature. When they are working well, they are our friends, but it is a fragile relationship. If they start leaking and produce water damage, they have changed from helpful to harmful. You can’t avoid water damage forever. For the times when you can’t avoid water damage SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County is available 24/7. So when an appliance has changed relationship status, give us a call, (502) 241.6861.

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County also proudly serves Spencer, Henry and Trimble Counties.

5 Plumbing Issues To Promptly Address

6/14/2018 (Permalink)

As a homeowner, you probably have a seemingly endless list of projects you want to complete when you finally have the time. Surely some projects, like re-painting a hallway or updating your cabinet hardware, can be put on the "one day" list with few consequences.

However, many homeowners place seemingly small plumbing issues on the back burner because they assume that these problems are not a big deal. Unfortunately, this mistake can be an expensive one.

Plumbing problems — even the small ones — always deserve your prompt attention. Here are five often-ignored plumbing problems that you should address as soon as possible before they become much worse.

LEAKS

While you might figure a few drops of water from a tiny leak are not pressing, the problems that the water causes are actually what is dangerous. A tiny plumbing leak often leads to a consistently moist surface, whether it be a wall or a floor, and consistent moisture encourages mold growth.

As soon as you notice a leak of any size, call your plumber to come repair the pipe in question. Otherwise, you may end up having to replace a lot of moldy, water-damaged building materials, as well.

TOILETS THAT CONSISTANTLY RUNNING

A running toilet doesn't make a mess and isn't dangerous. Therefore, many homeowners consider a running toilet easy to ignore. However, a leaky toilet can waste up to 200 gallons of water a day, or 6,000 gallons of water per month.

This water waste is not good for your wallet or for the environment. In regards to this, fixing a leaky toilet is usually as simple as replacing a component or two within the tank.

PIPES THAT FREEZE OCCASIONALLY

A pipe freezing and thawing occasionally may present a minor inconvenience if it keeps you from using a certain tap for a few days here and there in the winter. However, when a pipe freezes, you need to do more than just wait for the pipe to thaw. You need to take immediate action to keep the pipe from freezing again because the next time it freezes could be the time it bursts and floods your home.

Adding insulation to exposed water pipes is often the best way to prevent them from continuing to freeze. You can also leave the tap in question on, just slightly, during very cold periods to prevent the associated pipes from freezing.

WATER HEATERS MAKING NOISES

Is your water heater making a rumbling or chattering noise every time you turn it on? If the water is still coming out hot, you may be tempted to just ignore the noise. However, rattling noises usually mean that sediment has accumulated in the bottom of your hot water tank.

This sediment increases your energy bills and can cause your water heater to fail prematurely. You can have your plumber come backwash the water tank to remove sediment and prevent future issues.

MINERAL BUILDUP ON FAUCETS

Mineral buildup can easily be removed from faucets with limescale remover or even white vinegar, but removing the deposits from faucets is really just treating the symptoms and not the true problem.

Mineral deposits occur when you have hard water — water with a high concentration of dissolved calcium and magnesium. If minerals are depositing on your fixtures, they are probably forming deposits inside your pipes too.

Pipes clogged by mineral deposits eventually need to be replaced as they lead to low water pressure. Purchasing a water softener is a smart decision. This is a device that removes minerals from your water. This will prevent future mineral deposits on your faucets and within your pipes.

Water or Mold Damage In Your Home Or Business? Contact the professionals here at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County today to speak to a Mitigation Specialist. 502.241.6861

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County also proudly serves Spencer, Henry and Trimble Counties. 502.241.6861

Preventing Water Damage In Your Kitchen

6/5/2018 (Permalink)

Water damage in the kitchen gets expensive quickly, so we’re diving into ways homeowners can avoid serious damage. With a few preventative steps and a plan in place just in case, you can avoid major water damage in the kitchen.

Prevention is Key

When taking preventative measures to avoid water damage in your kitchen or home, use this preventative checklist to ensure plumbing, fixtures, and appliances are well maintained throughout the year:

  • Inspect all water hose connections to ensure they’re snug.
  • Look for wet spots; this may be a sign of a soon-to-burst pipe, or loose connection.
  • Check dishwasher hoses for leaks.
  • Clean and check the refrigerator drip pan and ice maker connections.
  • Make sure the dishwasher’s float switch is clean and not corroded. This mechanism tells the dishwasher when to stop filling with water. A broken switch can lead to major flooding.
  • Inspect traps and drains under the sink. If you notice any discolored or warped flooring materials or damaged cabinets, look for leaks around the base of the sink.
  • If you’ve noticed that your sink is clogged and water isn’t draining properly, you may have a blocked drain which needs to be cleaned. Drains should be kept clear at all times.
  • In addition to large appliances, the garbage disposal, extra freezers, etc., should also be examined to ensure optimal use and safety.

While minor leaks and mechanical failures are often fixed without a professional, don’t hesitate to get a second opinion. Contact a professional repair company to ensure small problems don’t become major issues.

Have a Plan

Every minute counts when you’re faced with a flood or water leak in the kitchen, so having a plan is critical.

In a worst-case scenario, homeowners will need to shut off the main water supply to the home before addressing the broken appliance or busted pipe directly.

There are two types of valves: the main valve, which stops water flow to the entire home; and supply valves that connect to specific appliances. Look for the main water valve and turn it off clockwise to stop the flow. (Note: if the valve is a lever, turn the handle perpendicular to the water line.)

Some homes have a supply valve located near the water line of the appliance. If this is easier to get to at first, turn it off; however, the main line should still be turned off.

Homeowners should make sure they know where these water supply lines are and how to properly turn them off. Homeowners should also be sure to educate family members about where these valves are located.

If there’s been a flood in the kitchen, avoid walking through the flood water. The kitchen is full of electrical outlets and equipment that could become dangerous when exposed to water or excessive moisture.

Moreover, depending on where the flood sprang from, the water could be dirty or contaminated. Homeowners should get pets and people out of the house immediately.

Once the main water value is off and everyone is accounted for, call SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County at 502.241.6861. For disaster management, you can count on SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

 

Flood Water and Black Water Procedures

5/30/2018 (Permalink)

The after affects of floodwater during a recent flooding event.

Floodwater/black water contains multiple contaminants and viruses that present serious risks of illness.  This past year, flooding has been a major risk in many locations throughout the U.S.  Several factors contribute to flooding, including snow thaw, storms and hurricanes, all of which can cause sewage backflows, as well as rising water from rivers, streams and seawater.  With a tropical storm already hitting the gulf coast and bringing with it lots of rain before hurricane season officially starts, it's important to discuss the appropriate actions to take when dealing with flooding/black water.

Remediating black water contamination in a building requires careful planning and utilization of specialized equipment. A licensed contractor will know how to assess the damages, sanitize and dry the affected areas. Steps to follow in the event of black water damage:

  1. Ensure the safety of all building occupants and workers. Employees must wear protective equipment, such as gloves, boots, eye protection, waterproof coveralls and respirators.
  2. The hired contractor conducts a thorough inspection of the affected areas to determine the severity of the damage. The restoration process depends on this assessment.
  3. Excess water is rapidly removed to prevent further damages. Contaminated porous items, sewage and other wastes are also removed. Special tools such as air scrubbers or negative air machines may be used to prevent contamination in unaffected areas. Affected surfaces are cleaned and sanitized with EPA-approved disinfectants.
  4. When sanitization is complete, the contractor establishes a balanced drying system to restore the damaged areas to their preloss condition. This final step involves the usage of specialized procedures, products and equipment, such as professional dehumidifiers and high capacity air movers.

For all property damage situations, including black water contamination, contact SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby. Our professionals will mitigate the loss and provide the latest industry standard services to restore your property from water, fire, smoke, mold and other damages.

Water Leaks Behind A Wall

5/24/2018 (Permalink)

There are many potential causes of water damage in your home.  Some sources of water damage, such as floods, burst pipes, and sewage backups, are obvious and homeowners notice them right away.  However, there are some sources of water damage that are much more difficult to detect such as water leaks behind walls.  Homeowners typically do not notice hidden leaks until they have already caused a considerable amount of damage.

Regardless of the source, it is imperative to react to water damage immediately.  The damage caused by excess water or moisture will continue to spread and become worse until the source of the water is repaired and the affected materials are dried and restored.  Hidden water leaks behind walls can be especially dangerous because the water will be absorbed into flooring, drywall, and ceilings, as well as wooden support beams and sheetrock.  Given enough time, a slow leak can result in very serious structural damage that will make the restoration process longer and more expensive.  Mold is also a very serious issue that results from extensive water damage.

While water leaks behind walls happen out of view, there are often several signs that can help you detect these water leaks.  The following are common signs of water leakage behind your walls.

Musty Odors

Excess water or moisture can create a musty smell when it gets absorbed into building materials such as sheetrock, wood or drywall.  Wall cavities affected by water damage are vulnerable to mold growth which also has a pungent musty odor.  If there is a strong musty smell near a certain area of your wall, there could be a water leak or mold growth behind it.

Mold On Walls And Baseboards

Mold growth normally appears in areas with excess moisture such as bathrooms, kitchens, and basements.  If mold appears on your walls, ceilings, or baseboards, it is very likely that there is a source of moisture behind the walls.

Visible Stains

Water from a leak within the walls will be absorbed in the drywall and sheetrock which will cause a noticeable stain.  If the stains on your wall continue to get bigger, this is usually a great indication that there is a hidden plumbing leak.

Paint Or Wallpaper Peeling

Too much moisture behind the walls can eventually cause paint and wallpaper to start peeling.  This normally happens when the sheetrock behind the wall has absorbed too much water.  Check for separation in the wallpaper along the seams or flaking paint to help locate a hidden water leak.

Warping Walls

When the sheetrock behind a wall absorbs too much water, it will bend and curve which causes the wall to warp.  If there is warping on your walls, this is a clear indication of a water leak.

Stained Or Buckled Ceilings And Floors

If the sheetrock has absorbed too much water or moisture, it can affect the connected ceilings and floors.  Check your floors and ceilings for signs of stains and buckling and if you notice a problem, check the nearby walls for signs of water damage.

Testing For Hidden Water Leaks

The signs discussed above are normally indicative of a hidden water leak, but it can be difficult to know for sure if you have a hidden leak from these signs alone.  If you find some of the signs of a hidden leak in your home and you want to know for sure, follow these tips to test for a hidden water leak by using your water meter.

  • Turn off all faucets in your home as well as appliances that use water.
  • Check the water meter and record the usage number.
  • Leave the water off for approximately 3 hours inside and outside the home.
  • Look at the water meter again to see the usage numbers.
  • If the water usage has gone up, then there is a hidden water leak.

What To Do When You Find A Water Leak

A water leak behind a wall is an issue that requires immediate attention, and it is usually better left to professionals.  Addressing a hidden water leak yourself involves removing the wet drywall or sheetrock and either drying out the affected materials, or replacing them.  You also must find and fix the source of the water which may be difficult to do.  By contacting a water damage restoration professional, you can trust that the job will be done effectively and that the technicians will handle all necessary repairs and mold removal.  Make sure to check your home regularly for signs of a hidden water leak so you can react before it causes serious damage.

Water 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. 

 

Summer Storms and Sump Pump Failure

5/22/2018 (Permalink)

If a storm knocks out your power or if for any other reason, your sump pump stops working, there is no defense against the water rising in your basement from the sump pump flooding.

As a result, SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County is available to clean up the mess and restore your basement to its original condition. Available 24 hours a day, seven days a week and will be at your home typically within one hour to evaluate your needs and begin the clean-up process. Let SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County give back your peace of mind.

Sump Pump Over Flow flooded basement Cleanup

Furthermore, basement flooding from sump pump failure is a common problem and is occurring all too often. Also in areas prone to excess groundwater. Results are costly for complicated clean-up projects. 

The trend in recent decades towards finished basements has raised stakes considerably.  Basement flooding can now destroy expensive entertainment rooms, office equipment, and flooring. Also, Homeowners with active sump pits often feel like they are being held ransom by their sump pumps. People are unable to enjoy vacations or travel without worrying that their sump pump will fail.

Because this concern is valid, the causes of sump pump failure make a seemingly endless list.

Typical Causes of Sump Pump Failure

  • The pump motor could burn out from overuse.
  • A clog could occur. Mud or debris can jam the pump. In addition, the water intake screen can be blocked.
  • Critical components, like the impeller, drive shaft, or float switch can break, disabling the pump.
  • A disconnected or stuck float switch.
  • Clogged waste water discharge pipe, impairing the pump’s ability to remove sump water.
  • Seemingly trivial things can also stop the pump from working. Unplugged by accident or rendered inoperable by a tripped circuit breaker or blown fuse.

Power outages are an extremely common cause of sump pump failure. Sump Pumps failures can create unusually extensive water damage. Because power outages tend to occur in conjunction with a storm, there is the threat of the sump pump malfunctioning. Thus, rainwater filling your basement causing Water Damage.

Sump Pump Failure In Your Home?

Contact the professionals here at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County to speak to a Mitigation Specialist. 502.241.6861

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County also proudly serves Spencer, Trimble and Henry Counties. 

Common Causes of Residential Water Damage

5/17/2018 (Permalink)

There are a few different water damage causes you should know about, so that you can avoid them as best as possible. If you’re curious about this, then this information should give you some insight on what to look for. 

One cause of water damage would be from natural sources such as weather. Severe weather could very well damage a home, no matter what precautions you’ve tried to take. One major weak spot in a home that is at least a few years old, is the roof. Serious weather can cause leaks and soft spots. One good storm could turn a slow dripping roof into a big opening for water. The same logic can be applied to your walls and foundation. To prevent water damage as much as possible, it’s important to check for leaks during any kind of storm that involves rain. This is a good preventative measure, but if the storm is big enough, water damage may not be avoidable.

Another one of the causes of water damage is from faulty plumbing. This can create quite the disaster, especially if there is a back flow of sewage. There are actually 3 categories of water that could damage a building. Category 1 is “clean” water, category 2 is labeled as “grey” water, and category 3 is the worst possible. This water may be contaminated with harmful elements simply isn't safe to be around. For this Category of water damage it will need to be extracted and cleaned by a water restoration professional. In most cases, carpeting and furniture that has been left in category 3 damage should be discarded. This is because bacteria, mold, mildew, and other pathogens breed in this environment.

You’re now in the know about water damage causes. This is the first step in being able to avoid it at all costs. This can be an expensive problem to deal with, so be careful. If you do run into any damage like this, do not hesitate to call a professional immediately.

Water Damage In Your Home or Business? Contact the professionals here at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County today. 502.241.6861

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby also proudly serves Spencer, Henry and Trimble Counties. 

Sprinkler System Water Damage

5/10/2018 (Permalink)

If you live in a newer home or apartment, you’ve probably stared at the ceiling and wondered what would happen if the sprinkler system was set off. Those likely spiky, circular things protruding from the ceiling serve a very serious purpose.

Sprinkler systems are becoming more prominent in private homes as the technology to control them advances, however many people worry if they’re compound one problem with another by adding water damage to the list of repairs after a fire. The truth is, if you’re lucky there will always be water damage after a fire, and a sprinkler system may help lower the amount of damage, nevertheless there will still be damage. Here’s an overview of the different types of sprinkler systems and why you’re going to need a disaster restoration company should your’s ever disperse.

Sprinkler System Designs

  • Wet Pipe System: More commonly found in commercial buildings, a wet pipe system is always full of water so it is ready to go the moment there’s a sign of fire. The advantage to this type of system is that it is quick and effective, but there is a downside. Since the pipes are constantly full of water there is a higher chance for freezing or leaking, which can lead to water damage.
  • Dry Pipe System: As the name suggests, a dry pipe system is not constantly full of water, but pressurized air instead. When the system is activated the air has to be pushed out before water fills the pipes and can put out the fire, resulting in response times of up to a full minute. In order to combat the long response time, a high water pressure is used.

An Unfortunate Series of Events

The hard truth is that no matter what, there’s going to be damage to your home. Whether it's smoke and fire or water damage, there’s going to be some restoration necessary. While a sprinkler system is great for containing fire damage, and the water damage done by a sprinkler system is less than what would happen from a visit by the local fire department, your home isn’t going to be the same after an event like this. The right disaster restoration company will know how to handle both types of damage. Call them, and then call your insurance company.

Sprinkler System or Fire Damage in your home or business? Contact the professionals here at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County to speak to a Mitigation specialist today.

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County also proudly serves Spencer, Henry and Trimble Counties.  

Leaky Pipes And Water Damage Restoration

5/3/2018 (Permalink)

Your residential or commercial property’s water system is one of the things that you should routinely check for damage. Leaks and pipe bursts can result in abnormally high water bills and water damage to your building or home. If you suspect plumbing leaks contact a professional to assess the damage.

Water pipes may look durable, airtight and watertight on the surface however they can be damaged by excessive pressure and shock. Construction-related activities can damage water lines, resulting in hard-to-control gushes that can flood your property in a hurry.

Changes in water chemistry can also corrode the insides of pipes. When this happens, pinhole leaks can develop, wasting away water and creating damp spaces in areas of your home or building where water shouldn’t intrude. This can inflict  water damage to walls, floors and ceilings for months on end before you finally notice the problem and do something about it. Leaks can also pave the way for the contamination of your water supply, dropping its quality and making it a risk for your structure’s occupants.

Water Damage from Plumbing Leaks

While the prospect of water intruding your property seems more like a nuisance than a crisis, it’s actually a very serious matter that requires immediate and decisive action. Water damage is a progressive problem: the more you wait, the worse it gets. Here are some of the issues you’re looking at when you let water have its way on your property:

  • Destruction of the Structure’s Permanent Parts – Water can corrode metals and weaken wood. Most homes rely heavily on these two principal materials along with concrete. When water damage sets in, you could be looking at costly reconstruction work soon.
  • Mold growth – Moisture and organic matter are the only prerequisites for mold to grow. When water intrusion happens, mold can thrive undetected indoors until it forms colonies. The colonies then release new spores to the air. In some bad cases, mold can turn black and toxic. 
  • Air quality issues – Hidden pockets of water can make the air in your home or workplace musty and unpleasant. 
  • Fire hazard creation – When water from leaking water lines seep into areas where electrical wiring runs, watch out. Any openings in the wire’s insulation can make contact with water, creating sparks and possibly causing a fire.
  • Damage to carpets and rugs – Water from pipes that are leaking under your floors can surface up, but stay concealed if you have rugs and carpets covering your crawl areas. Water weakens the backings of these floor coverings, making them more susceptible to wear and tear. It can also make your carpets a perfect breeding ground for germs, fungi and dust mites.

Water 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. 

Water In Your Crawlspace

5/1/2018 (Permalink)

Water in crawl spaces can be a bigger problem than you might think. Even though a crawl space is a relatively remote area of the home, water that pools there can cause issues on every floor if mold forms. The two things mold needs to survive are moisture and darkness, both of which can be prevalent in crawl space that has a leak. Mold can spread through the ventilation system, causing problems and can grow on piers and joists causing structural issues.

 

Keep reading to learn how water enters your crawl space and the things you can do to prevent it.

It cannot be stressed enough how important a slope away from the home is in preventing foundation damage. Essentially, properly sloped grading around your crawl space can help prevent water from entering your home.

 

The remedy of a poor sloping grade is to build it up. Make sure you have a slope of at least 6-8 inches away from the foundation walls, extending for the first 6-8 feet. This grade should be checked every spring once the ground begins to thaw to see if the winter has washed away or caused any shifting of the structure.

One of the most devastating things about water in your crawl space isn't the damage caused, the lack of access, or even the impending  problems – it's the fact that the whole ordeal could have likely easily been prevented. This is because the biggest cause of crawl space leaks in a house is improper downspout aiming or not cleaning out gutters.

Downspouts should be pointed away from the home's foundation and also be accompanied by a 2-foot splash block at the bottom that guides water away. When a home doesn't have a downspout, or has one that is pointed towards  the house, the storms will eventually wash away the grade of your soil and direct water on a bypass into the basement.

Sometimes water in your crawl space is caused by human error, specifically when a hose is left running near the side of the house or when somebody over-waters their shrubs. Not only can excessive watering cause plants to die, it also creates a water source that many homes aren't equipped to deal with. Make sure your flowerbed is equipped with the proper base layers to prevent water from skipping right past the roots and into the crawl space.

Crawl space leaks can also originate from inside the home. The thing about water is that it will always trickle down, so even if a pipe has burst somewhere near an upstairs bathroom, it may find a final resting spot in the crawl space.

The easiest way to detect a broken pipe is by taking a visual inventory of the home, looking for obvious wet spots. If you suspect you have a broken pipe but can’t locate the leak call in a plumber to help you pinpoint the exact spot of the ruptured or loose pipe connection.

  

Of course sometimes a crawl space leak comes from outside the home, either from a broken city line or water that comes from underground. City municipalities will have to come on site to fix any line problems on their end and there could be a number of things causing subterranean water to form such as:

    Underground drains that are designed to carry water away from the home have become damaged, plugged, or have insufficient slope.
  • A torrential storm creates just too much water for your drainage system to handle and causes pools of water that eventually seep deep into the soil. 

Water Damage In Your Home's Crawlspace? Contact the professionals here at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County today to speak to a Mitigation Specialist. 502.241.6861

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County also proudly serves Spencer, Henry and Trimble Counties. 

 

What to Expect When Your Basement

4/30/2018 (Permalink)

Basement leak are nothing new. Structural cracks, poor lot grading and drainage,burst pipes, sewer backups, and even over-full gutters and downspouts can be quick to show you trouble travels downhill. How should you handle these events and prevent unnecessary damage? Let’s take a closer look…

How to Stop Water from Leaking Into Your Basement

  • Put a Stopper in It
    Filling cracks in the structure and gaps around windows with an epoxy sealer outside, and a masonry sealer indoors, finishing the repaired area with the appropriate water proofing paint. If damage looks serious, schedule a professional repair assessment.
  • Go with the Flow
    If your basement leaks when it rains, the first thing you need to do is clear your gutters and downspouts, and check to see if they’re draining in the optimal direction and at least six and a half feet away from your basement to prevent leaks and flooding. If problems persist, professional landscaping or waterproofing help may be necessary to add a crown or sloping trench to address grading issues.
  • Think Thirsty
    Water thirsty plants, shrubs, and flowers, as well as porous pavers and concrete options improve absorption and prevent buildup and runoff. Avoid large trees as roots could penetrate the basement structure and create additional leakage issues.
  • Bail Out
    Located in the lowest part of your basement, installing a sump pump can help prevent your basement from turning into an indoor swimming pool in the event of a major leak. Routinely checked and cleaned to ensure flow, and can quickly and efficiently redirect water outdoors, preventing damage.
  • Fight FOG
    Fat, oil and grease can cause drain blockages in your home’s plumbing system that could result in water backups to your basement. Wipe or scrape as much of these substances into the trash as possible. The same goes for flushing the wrong objects down the toilet.  The only thing septic and sewer line safe? Toilet paper and human waste.

How Much Does it Cost to Waterproof Your Basement?

Basement waterproofing varies widely in cost, and is largely dependent repair issues. Those with minor repairs could spend as little as $750. However those with in need of more comprehensive repairs like addressing foundation cracks and adding drainage and gutters could spend in excess of $9,000. Left unaddressed, however, these costs could pile up to far more. Excess basement moisture can quickly lead to mold and moisture damage in other areas of your home.

Water Damage In Your Basement? 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. 

Structural Damage

4/24/2018 (Permalink)

Structural Damage

Structural damage is probably the most serious risk of water damage. It can occur in many different ways. Flooding can affect the structure of your home. It can move structure points in the foundation and/or cracks. And there is also the risk of mold inflicting damage on the structure if flooding hasn’t. A space that hasn’t been dried out properly is the perfect place for mold to grow. And if it penetrates, the structure will weaken from the inside. Both of these can go unseen and can be very dangerous.

Water damage is a serious matter. It can affect your home in myriad ways and definitely leave its mark. If you have found water damage in your home, you have to address the matter promptly . The best approach is to call for expert advice. Restoration professionals will have more experience and know how to handle your unique water damage situation. SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby will be there to help make your home safe and water damage free. 

Water Damage In Your Home or Business? Contact the professionals here at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby today to speak to a Mitigation Specialist. 502.241.6861

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County also proudly serves Spencer, Henry and Trimble Counties. 

Water Damaged Drywall

4/20/2018 (Permalink)

Water & Mold Damage On Drywall

Short-term damage to drywall is caused by water, whereas long-term damage is usually the result of mold growth:

Drywall Exposed To Water

When drywall is exposed to moisture it will show water stains. After a prolonged period of time, it can also be completely destroyed and reduced to mush. The paper coatings will separate from the gypsum, and the core will lose its structural integrity.

Even if the damage is not immediately apparent, drywall that's lost structural integrity can begin to slowly sag over a period of time and will need to be replaced.

Mold & Drywall

With its paper backing, wet drywall can also be an ideal habitat for mold. Mold feeds by secreting digestive chemicals into the environment, which then reabsorbs along with digestive materials to use as food. This process is not possible unless the materials are wet. Mold can begin to grow on drywall in as little as 24-48 hours; drying the walls as quickly as possible is key to an effective solution.

Water 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. 

When Ground Water Enters Your Home?

4/12/2018 (Permalink)

There are three main ways that ground water can enter your home, Basement seepage, water intrusion and sub pump failure. Excess ground water flooding is usually caused by abnormally large amounts of water not properly draining, which causes the groundwater to spread and enter your home.

Basement Seepage- Groundwater can commonly find its way into your basement by going through the cellar doors, improperly sealed windows, or cracks in the foundation. It is a smart idea to check your basement for cracks, holes, improper sealants, or areas where it looks like water can get through.

Water Intrusion- Ground water can find its way into a home that is not properly sealed, or has cracks.

Sump Pump Failure- It is common to find a sump pump in homes that are located in high water table areas. Sump pumps are meant to keep the area under a home dry and to prevent it from flooding.

The sump pump usually sits in a specially constructed pit where groundwater flows in through drains or naturally, and the sump pump will pump the groundwater out and away from the home.

Occasionally, a sump pump does fail. Whether improper insulation, maintenance, defects, clogs, or a power failure, if a sump pump fails, groundwater could end up overflowing through the sump pump and flooding your basement.

If groundwater is coming in, make sure to try to stop the water coming in the best you can and wait until the water level has stopped rising to call SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County. If you call a professional in while the water is still coming in very heavily, there would be a lot more charges associated with the job as they would have to repeat the extraction process until the water recedes.

Water 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.  

How To Spot Previous Water Damage When Buying A Home

4/11/2018 (Permalink)

There are few things better in life than buying your own home. There’s a reason why it’s a popular dream to be a home owner. A new house means freedom, space…and liabilities for anything that goes wrong inside your home. Unfortunately, those problems are more common than you think; and with them, all those home-buying joys can quickly turn into a nightmare scenario.

One of the biggest headaches is water damage. Not every sign of water damage is visible and its impact on your wallet can be severe. That’s why it’s imperative to search for any and all signs of water damage during your inspection of the home before buying. Because if you are unfortunate enough to miss the signs of damage prior to signing the contract, you will be left struggling to take care of an issue that you are now completely liable for.

Luckily, you don't have to be an expert to spot the potential signs of water damage. By paying close attention and looking out for any of these possible signs, you should be able to avoid the expense and embarrassment that comes with buying a money pit.

Use your sense of smell

A lot of times you don’t visibly see water damage. You smell it.

Water damage often leads to the growth of mold and unless the previous owner hired a professional mold restoration company, it is highly likely that this mold will leave behind obvious signs. The most obvious sign is a musty, humid smell. If your prospective home smells like something’s off, it probably is. You'll definitely want to make sure you have it inspected for mold and water damage prior to signing the contract.

Be on the lookout for cracks

Cracks can form in walls – both inside and outside the home – the foundation, or ceilings. They can all be signs that the building suffered from previous water damage. This could also include traceable lines on the surfaces, along with peeling or flaky paint. The biggest problem with these sorts of cracks is that they allow even more water into a home going forward; for that reason, be thorough when looking for cracks.

Do you see any grainy substances? These are mineral deposits

You'll also want to carefully examine the walls, ceilings and floors for any signs of mineral deposits. These deposits can be nearly transparent and difficult to spot; you might want to run your hand along the walls and feel for any sandiness. Mineral deposits may have a whitish tint and are usually left behind after standing water or water-logged materials dry out.

Does anything feel…soft?

Most houses these days have a wooden foundation – at least on the interior. Wood is susceptible to rotting when exposed to moisture for a prolonged time. Use your hand to feel along walls, door frames and other places where you might suspect damage. Wood shouldn’t yield to you too easily.

As for the floors, a squeaky or moving subfloor could signify water damage from a leak that has bowed the board. Make sure to walk the house thoroughly.

Inspect doors, windows and any other openings

The doors, windows and other openings are an easy way for water to get into your home. For this reason, it is essential that you fully inspect these openings to make sure that they are completely sealed and watertight. In addition, you'll want to look at the surrounding areas to ensure the materials around the openings don't look decayed.

Natural openings to a home are usually one of the first signs of water damage. If you catch it up front, you can save yourself a migraine later.

Check around for sump pumps and other water cleanup equipment

A sump pump or other water removal equipment is usually a pretty obvious sign that the owner has experienced water issues in the past. With that said, isn’t it much better to have that sort of equipment on hand? A sump pump can help prevent any future issues; as long as the water damage in a home is not extensive, having that sump pump up front can really help.

Water damage is no joke. If caught early, it’s a minor headache for your family. If you let it linger however, you might be looking at some extremely costly repair bills for such a simple issue. Water has the potential to cause all sorts of serious problems for a home: mold, foundation rot, damage to insulation, dry walling, floors and subfloors – the list goes on. A home with a history of water damage could even dramatically lose its value.

Even if you don't currently have water problems, it's never a bad idea to invest in a sump pump. Having a sump pump lying around is a great preventative measure that immediately prepares you for any future water issues. Furthermore, even if your new home doesn't currently have water damage, you'll still want to pay close attention to all the factors above to ensure the problem doesn't rear its ugly head.

Water Damage Or Mold In Your Home or Business? Contact the professionals here at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby to speak with a mitigation specialist today. 502.241.6861

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County also proudly serves Spencer, Trimble and Henry Counties. 

What To Do If Water Damage Occurs

4/5/2018 (Permalink)

What to Do if Water Damage Occurs

Immediately shut off the water to your home if damage is being incurred from a plumbing malfunction to prevent further flooding.

Move all possessions to dry ground such as valuables, documents, and electronics.

Do not use electricity if your home has water damage as the wiring can be impacted.

Have your home inspected by a plumbing professional.

File a claim with your insurance company so that your home can be repaired.

Contact a restoration services company to remove and extract moisture as well as water from your home.

Mold is able to grow within 24 hours of a flood, so immediately taking action against damage is importance.

Lastly, document the damage with pictures to ensure proof is obtained.

  Water Damage In Your Home Or Business? Contact SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County today to speak to a Mitigation Specialist. 502.241.6861 SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County also proudly serves Spencer, Henry and Trimble Counties.   

Why Can't I Clean Water Damage Up On My Own?

4/2/2018 (Permalink)

When water damages your property, cleanup must start immediately. There is a 24 to 48 hour window from the time something gets wet to the time that mold begins to grow. After that time frame mold will multiply rapidly. When mold growth is widespread, you need the help of a professional mold remediation service to safely remove and treat the water and mold.

Get your property completely dry with a company that specializes in water damage restoration and emergency water extraction. At SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County we use professional water removal and drying equipment to complete the job as quickly as possible. 

Water 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. 

What You Need To Know Before Calling A Plumber

3/30/2018 (Permalink)

Plumbing is an important part of the home. Your pipes and other plumbing systems must be well-built, developed and maintained. However, problems may still occur even if you take good care of your plumbing. You may not be prepared for such emergency situations. If problems like this arise, what automatically comes to mind is to call a local plumber. But before you do that, you must make sure first that you really need a plumber or another specialist.

So here are five things you need to know and consider before calling a plumber.

  1. Check if the plumber is licensed and reliable. A license alone is not enough. You also need to look into the experience and reputation of the plumber. You can do this by reading reviews. However, don’t base your decision on the reviews alone. Just use this to have a quick background regarding the plumber’s reputation and skills.
  2. Get free estimates. This will give you an idea of how much money you would be spending. However, you must keep in mind that affordability does not mean bad quality. Don’t equate quality with the price of the plumbing work. But don’t expect that the best plumber will be the cheapest.
  3. The plumber must not only be experienced and skilled; he or she must also be trustworthy. See to it that you entrust your home to a professional that you can trust and count on. Let your instinct dictate this. And again, read some reviews.
  4. Check if the plumber offers workmanship warranty. Is he willing to fix any wrongs in case something comes up due to his performance? Is he reputable when it comes to installation work? Make a list of questions to ask as a reference when calling the company.
  5. This is the most important. Ask yourself if you really need a plumber. Is the work needed fit for a plumber or would another specialist be more appropriate? Remember that there are things that plumbers can’t do. Assess the situation before you call. Chances are, you might not need a plumber after all, but a restoration specialist.

These are the kinds of things a restoration specialist can do:

A water damage restoration team will assess the damage to your home. They will investigate to see if there is serious water damage due to flooding, burst pipes or other issues. So if the supposed “plumbing” problems have made your carpets, furniture and other valuables a mess, you don’t need a plumber, but a restoration specialist. Keeping in mind however, if the water source is still running you should contact a plumber first and foremost.

A restoration specialist will remove the excess water as well as set equipment to dry the structure. Depending on the water source some personal items may be salvageable as well.

The next time you encounter a “plumbing” issue, ask yourself first the five things mentioned in the article before calling a plumber. Remember what plumbers can’t do that restoration specialists can handle.

Water Damage In Your Home Or Business? Contact SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County to speak to a restoration specialist today. 502.241.6861

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby also proudly serves Spencer, Henry and Trimble Counties. 

Avoiding Spring Rain Water Damage

3/23/2018 (Permalink)

April showers bring May flowers, but spring rain can also lead to water damage. Basement flooding due to foundation problems and roof leaks can become an expensive problem when a big storm hits. The good news is by taking proper precautions, you can prevent spring rains from damaging your home.

Inspect Your Roof

While flooding often comes first to mind when discussing rain damage, it’s not the only hazard brought in by the storms. A roof in need of repair can lead to water leaking in and causing huge problems up above. Typically roofs should be replaced every 15 to 20 years, and regular maintenance is key to getting the longest life from your overhead cover.

  • Bring in a roofing professional to inspect your roof and repair any cracks, missing shingles, and general wear and tear.
  • Keep in mind that even a loose nail can allow water to leak in.
  • Be on the lookout for water damage from within your home. Sags in the ceiling or discoloration is an obvious sign that outside water has found its way in.
  • If a heavy storm has already hit, look for signs of damage caused by wind, hail, or falling trees and branches. Contact your insurance company if you believe your roof needs repair.

Gutters

The gutter system on your home helps to channel water off the roof and away from the foundation of your home. If your gutters are clogged or not hanging straight, the water can lead to mold, landscape damage, wood rot, and foundation cracks.

  • Clean gutters of debris in the fall and spring, the times of year when gutters can easily be filled with fallen leaves or dropped blooms from trees.
  • Redirect downspouts away from your foundation, installing extenders to allow the water to completely steer away from your home.
  • Consider installing gutter guards to prevent debris from getting in while allowing water to flow freely.
  • If you’ve got a green thumb, think about installing rain barrels to keep water from pooling near your foundation. The bonus is that when it comes time to water your flowers and grass, you can use the rain collected instead of paying for what comes out of the tap.

Protecting Your Basement

Melting snow and spring rains can lead to pooling water in your home. Addressing outside issues is a must for keeping a home dry, but there are also inside steps to take to avoid standing in ankle-deep water.

  1. Cracks in the foundation–even minor ones–make easy entry for water. Heavy-duty caulk can solve some small problems, but for bigger repairs, bring in a foundation specialist.
  2. Install a sump pump to remove water in your home, and inspect it regularly to make sure it’s working properly.
  3. Place outdoor clear plastic covers over below-grade basement windows to let light in but keep water out.
  4. If your home has a septic tank, be sure to check and clean it regularly to avoid problems during future rains.     

Water Damage In Your Home Due to Spring Rain? Call 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. 502.241.6861

How To Detect A Slab Leak

3/9/2018 (Permalink)


Slab Leak refers to a leak that actually occurs beneath the foundation of your house. In the case of most homes, there are copper water lines below the cement or concrete that serves as the base of your home. There is not much awareness of slab leaks, but they are actually a huge issue, and can easily be mistaken for a simple basement leak. However, there are some signs that can help you tell when you have a slab leak as opposed to a basement leak.

WATER BILLS

You probably want to spend as little time as possible thinking about your water bill, but it can actually be a great resource to help you detect slab leaks. If your water bill is unusually high, a slab leak could be the cause. A leak in these pipes can come in many different sizes, but regardless of what size some quantity of water will be flowing through it. This means that you are losing water 24/7, an issue that is bound to show up on your bill. If there is no other reason for the spike in cost, it is probably time to call a local plumber.

Watch and Listen for leaks

A strong sign that you have a leak in your pipes is the constant sound of running water. This may be a subtle noise, especially since you are accustomed to it, but try to take notice if the sound is constant. If there is water running and you are not using any water-based appliances, this can be a strong indicator of a leak.

If you think that you hear water running when everything is turned off in the house, check your water meter. There should be an indicator that spins when water is running. If it is spinning, then water is flowing somewhere, and it could be a slab leak.

WATER ON THE FLOOR

This one may seem obvious, but it is still worthwhile. If there is water seeping through your floor, you obviously have some kind of leak. However, it can be difficult to tell if it is a traditional basement leak or a slab leak. Here are a few indicators to watch out for.

  • If the leak seems to be growing from the middle of the floor, rather than one of the edges or walls, it is more likely to be a slab leak. Basement leaks tend to result from cracks in the foundation, which tend to form at the edges rather than the center of the floor. A slab leak, in contrast, can occur anywhere along the pipe.
  • If the water from the leak is warm, this can be an indicator of a slab leak. Often times, both cold and hot water pipes are running under your home. If the leak is in one of the hot water pipes, then the wet spot on the floor will be noticeably warmer. Naturally, this only indicates a leak in a hot water pipe, so if the water is cold it does not mean that it is not a slab leak. It could simply be a leak in a cold water pipe.

A noticeable leak combined with one of the other indicators can strengthen your case for a slab leak. For instance, if your water bill is high, go check your basement to see if there are any water spots on the floor.

If you suspect a slab leak contact a plumbing professional right away!! 

Water Damage In Your Home Or Business? Contact a SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County today to speak to a Mitigation Specialist. 502.241.6861

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County also proudly serves Spencer, Henry and Trimble Counties. 

Restoring Your Damaged Important Documents

3/8/2018 (Permalink)

When your business or organization is dealing with important wet documents or books and the potential related process or legal costs, or historical losses—paper drying suddenly becomes very interesting. So understanding how your documents can be salvaged may save you from a lot of fingernail biting while you wait for the process to play out.

This blog post provides an overview of the document freeze-drying process. And gives you some critical things to consider before you ever need help.


The Magic of Freeze-drying

When your documents and books arrive at a facility, your restoration provider will typically use freeze-drying (the scientific term of lyophilization) to remove water before completing any other necessary restoration steps.

The freeze-drying process uses a combination of low temperatures and low pressure to transform water from a solid to a gas. Condensing coils in the freeze drying chambers attract the gas and remove water from the chambers.

Most freeze-drying chambers can complete a job in 14 – 28 days, but newer technology has reduced the average drying time to just 5 – 7 days.

It’s important to understand that freeze-drying can be taken too far, in which case it may result in dry or brittle paper. So limits should be applied to prevent this from happening.
 
Three Things to Consider

Your document restoration needs can be time-sensitive and involve confidential or even priceless fragile materials. Damaged or lost documents can also set off a chain reaction of process or legal-related scenarios that can quickly grow very expensive. That’s why we recommend planning ahead whenever possible. If your organization has important documents or books that it could not afford to lose, be sure to:

-Consider how fast you would need them back, if something happened

-Evaluate your document restoration vendor options ahead of time

Water or Fire Damage In Your Home Or Business? Contact the professionals at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County today. 502.241.6861

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County also proudly serves Spencer, Henry and Trimble Counties. 

Water Damage- Where Is The Source?

3/7/2018 (Permalink)

The more quickly you can identify a water problem the less costly any associated damage will become.

When you begin noticing erroneous water collections around the confines of your home, water damage could be paying you an unpleasant visit. Becoming aware of these lingering water collection points is an important step in circumventing the entire problem. However if you can pinpoint the cause of your homes’ water leakage than your bank account will look a little fatter long term.

Common causes of Water Damage:

Bursting or leaking pipes

Backed up drains and toilets may result in untimely piping bursts due to unwarranted pressure on your home’s pipes. Faulty garbage disposals can lead to leaky pipes along with roots growing in the home’s front and/or back yards.

Crawl Space, Basement and Attic Concerns

These sections are more prone to the mishaps of water damage than any other area of the home. Lower level water damage jeopardizes the structure integrity of a home, and can lead to dangerous mold damage. These occurrences should be dealt with as soon as they become known.

HVACs (heating, ventilating and air conditioning units)

When air conditioning units are not routinely inspected, moisture may begin to buildup, thereby interacting with mold spores inside air ducts encouraging the mold to proliferate and cause damage.

Malfunctioning Household Appliances and Weather Related Natural Disasters

As appliances age, their performance and dependability contract. Also, natural disasters are difficult to predict and typically result in excessive damage.

If your Water Damage Source is still a mystery contact a plumber to diagnose the problem.

Water Damage In Your Home Or Business? Contact the professionals here at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County today to speak to a Mitigation specialist. 502.241.6861

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby also proudly serves Spencer, Henry and Trimble Counties.

How To Prevent Water Damage- Clogged Drains

3/6/2018 (Permalink)

All plumbing systems develop clogs. There’s no way to avoid it. What to do? As the old saying goes… the best solution is prevention. You can easily avoid clogged drains in a kitchen sink, bathtub, toilet, and floor drain by not abusing your drain line and using caution when dumping things down the drain. Avoid pouring fats, oils, and greases (like bacon grease) down the drain as they have a tendency to clump together or solidify (congeal) and block your plumbing pipes.

Don’t ignore a slow drain. Take action at the first sign of a problem to prevent a complete clog or backup from happening. Start simple, then work your way up to fixes that require specialty tools, or a substantial investment of time and effort. Remove the excess hair and gunk that has built up at the surface of the drain. Cleaning strainers and pop-up stoppers frequently can easily clear a common bathroom clog.

If the blockage isn’t too far into the pipes, a plunger can likely clear a clog. Plungers are sold at any hardware store or home center. Those with larger rubber bells deliver more thrust. Be sure it has a sturdy handle so you can apply plenty of force. A plunger that has a cup with a flat bottom works well for sinks, tubs, and showers. Plunging can be quick and easy or it could quickly become a wet mess — be sure to have a bucket, rags, and a sponge close at hand.

Another way to prevent clogs, if you have a septic tank, is to have a professional inspect it every two to three years to ensure it is functioning properly. These regular maintenance inspections will help identify any potential issues early on and save you headaches down the road.

Water Damage as a result of a clogged drain 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. 

How Unattended Water Damage Leads To Structural Damage

3/1/2018 (Permalink)

How Unattended Water Damage Will Lead to Structural Damage

Most people who have lived in a residential building have had problems with water damage at some point. Maybe the rain leaks through the roof and falls onto the floor. Sometimes a flood can rush into the home from the outside. Other times pipes from the refrigerator or washing machine become disconnected and flood the home. Some people think that cleaning up the water isn't all that is necessary; however, the damage that results can also cause structural damage. A few of the ways that water damage can lead to structural damage are discussed below.

Water Damage Warps the Wood

Many people have heard about wood warping and the problems that this can cause. For those that don't understand, wood warping refers to a change in the shape of the wood due to the damage from water. While some people think that wood warping is merely an aesthetic issue, remember that wood is used in walls and roofs as well. If the wood warps, it is no longer straight and the alignment that was used to keep the walls and roof strong has been moved out of place. This can lead to support problems for the structure of the home.

Water Damage Can Degrade Metal

Water damage can cause the metallic fabrication in the home to rust. People depend on metal to carry air conditioning fluids, heat, and clean water through the plumbing system. Many people have also reinforced parts of their home with metal. Water reacts with the metal and can cause the metal to rust over. This damages the integrity of the surface and can contaminate drinking water or decrease the efficiency of a heating system. People should have water damage treated to preserve the integrity of their piping and fabrication.

These are only a few ways that unattended water damage can have important impacts on the structure of a home. Treat water damage to prevent them from happening.

Water Damage In Your Home Or Business? Contact the professionals here at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County. 502.241.6861

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County also proudly serves Spencer, Henry and Trimble Counties. 

How To Avoid Electrical Hazards After A Flood

2/28/2018 (Permalink)

Much has been made of protecting your appliances from flooding, either by elevating them on crates or pallets, or better yet, moving them to a higher floor in your home or business.

Unfortunately, this is either not possible to do or is a step that is overlooked. Appliances are damaged by the thousands every year in flood related events. So what is the proper course of action after your home has been flooded and your appliances have been submerged in water?

The single best answer is that all flood damaged plumbing, heating, cooling and electrical appliances should be replaced, not repaired. It is the single best option with a almost zero risk factor. If work must be performed on these systems, then it should be done by a qualified, licensed contractor, rather than the homeowner.

If this sound like a rather strict approach, it is only because of the numerous accidents and injuries reported as a result of improper do it yourself repairs. 

Unit controls that have been damaged by floodwater are extremely dangerous, and any attempt to use them after they have suffered water or flood damage may result in fires or even explosions. Electrical appliances may produce serious electrical shock. Other devices that are at risk include water heaters, furnaces, boilers, room heaters, and air conditioners.

The repair of electrical units damaged by flooding and other related systems is by no means a job for the do it yourself artist. Even the most handy men among us should stay away from these types of problems and allow the professionals to conduct the work. This is especially true when it comes to control valves, as they are manufactured with very close tolerances, and should be replaced whenever they have been submerged in flood waters. 

In some cases, controls may appear to be operative even after the damage has occurred, but it is still unwise to engage the unit. It may work for a period of days or even weeks, but it still may fail, and any component that has been underwater poses a serious risk. 

Due to the serious nature of this sort of damage, and because so many things can and often do go wrong, it is in many cases cheaper and always safer to simply have the unit or units replaced.

While valves or controls may be repaired, the damage in other areas may go unnoticed. Acquiring a new unit is the single most effective way to make sure that your are getting a product that poses no safety threats to you or your family. 

Flood Damage To Your Home Or Business? Contact the professionals at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County today. 502.241.6861

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby also proudly serves Spencer, Henry and Trimble Counties. 

Common Causes of Sump Pump Failure

2/26/2018 (Permalink)

A sump pump may only become obvious at the worst possible time—when flooding strikes. Because sump pumps sit idle most of the time, silently safeguarding your basement against water inundation, failure in the pump system doesn’t necessarily become evident until it’s actually needed to remove water. At that point, it’s too late. You’ll need the services of a professional water damage restoration specialist to minimize damage and perform the clean-up.  

Be forewarned about these possible causes of sump pump failure, before it happens:

  • No electricity – The same extreme weather conditions that cause flooding frequently cause power outages. Also, a circuit breaker that tripped without notice might deprive the pump of electricity. A sump pump with battery backup option offers extra protection.
  • Pump inlet clogged – Debris in the basin sucked up against the pump inlet screen may obstruct water from entering the pump.
  • Stuck float switch – The float switch energizes the pump as the sump basin fills with water. A stuck switch prevents pump actuation and basement flooding occurs. A frequent cause of a binding float switch is a pump that has gradually shifted position in the basin due to vibration.
  • Undersized pump – The pump’s rated output and the discharge pipe diameter must be appropriately sized to remove the worst-case volume of water. If either is undersized, the pump won’t be able to remove water fast enough to prevent property damage.
  • Obstructed discharge pipe – The pump discharge pipe may be blocked or buried by debris outdoors. If the line isn’t properly routed downslope on the property, residual water accumulating in the pipe may freeze and block discharge.

For more details on the causes of sump pump failure, contact the water damage experts at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County. 502.241.6861

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County also proudly serves Trimble, Henry and Spencer Counties.

Flooding In Your Home Or Business

2/21/2018 (Permalink)

Despite the persistent cold winter we've experienced here in Kentucky, spring is quickly approaching us once more. With spring coming heavy rains are imminent. However, flooding can be caused by a number of other factors, some poised to wreak havoc when you least expect it.

Although heavy rains are a factor, the vast majority of flooding scenarios are going to be caused by infrastructure problems, such as plumbing, slab leaks, and so forth. There are quite a few ways that an emergency flood situation can crop up: a pipe can burst unexpectedly in the middle of the night, wreaking havoc until someone notices in the morning. With this scenario, calling a Water Restoration Company out as quickly as possible will help mitigate further problems and potentially avoid mold growth and other related repairs that would be required should the water damage become more substantial. Drywall, flooring, carpeting... all of these can become potential problems when flooding happens.

Slab leaks are another potential issue, but these are far less obvious than pipe bursts. These are small, barely-noticeable cracks or holes in pipes that cause small amounts of water to leak into the underlying structure of a property over time.

Since they can go for weeks or even months undetected, the damage caused by these can be rather severe. At the base level, water bills will be much higher when a slab leak is present, and the presence of water can cause musty or moldy odor to build up. This is also a precursor to mold growth if a slab leak occurs near drywall, and can also lead to floor or even foundation damage that may require substantial reconstruction work.

As always, it's the little things that we may not see or the things we least expect that can cause the biggest problems. When the weather gets warm and you think that you're high and dry, never forget that water can still pose a threat and that you should always be prepared for it. For the best water restoration service, call SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County for 24 hour emergency assistance.  502.241.6861

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby also proudly serves Spencer, Henry and Trimble Counties.

Checklist for Flood Damage

2/20/2018 (Permalink)

There are many things in life that are frustrating and stressful, but many of them can be less so if you develop a course of action to follow. This is true after experiencing a flood. With the following flood damage remediation checklist, you may find the process a bit easier to manage.

Step #1: Call for help! You should never try to tackle the cleanup from a flood on your own. At the very least, you need a professional to assess the situation and determine any major and immediate dangers.

Step #2: If the entire area has been flooded, there is a good chance the authorities have already turned off the gas and electric service to the area. If you can safely do so, shut off the main controls to your home, as well. Neither of these should be turned back on until the flood damage has been resolved and everything in your home has been dried.

Step #3: Contact your insurance company to file a claim. You should take photographs if you can do so safely. You can call for water removal services before the adjuster comes out as long as there are photographs to substantiate your claim. It is advisable to get the water removed as quickly as possible to avoid added damages and reduce the chance for mold. It isn’t a good idea to wait if it takes a while for the adjuster to show up.

Step #4: Work with a professional water damage restoration company to salvage what is possible and begin repairs to the property. Most companies will work with your insurance company during this process.

Our staff at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County understands that it may feel like you’ve lost everything, but we can help get you back in your home after flood damage has made it uninhabitable. We can begin the emergency response and continue with the  rebuilding process.

Flood Damage In Your Home Or Business?

Contact the professionals here at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County today to speak to a remediation specialist. 502.241.6861

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County also proudly serves Spencer, Henry and Trimble Counties. 

Can You Dry Hardwood Floors After A Water Damage?

2/14/2018 (Permalink)

Can You Dry A Hardwood Floor After A Water Damage? 

A very common question we receive at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County is, “Can I dry hardwood floor after water damage?” The amount of homes with hardwood floors is steadily increasing for many reasons, the most prominent being that hardwood floors not only tend to sell homes faster, but they also increase the price. The only downfall is that in the event of a flood or water overflow, hardwood floors cannot be easily taken out and dried like carpet can. This brings us to our question – Can you dry hardwood floors in place, or does everything need to be ripped out and replaced?

First, you need to recognize the many different factors that play into properly achieving a dry hardwood floor. Water damage can increase drastically if not taken care of properly, professionally, and in a timely manner. Here are some of the main considerations you should make when considering calling a water damage restoration company to dry hardwood floor.

Response Time

Water damage can be greatly decreased depending on the response time to the problem. According to the EPA, mold can grow in as little as 48-72 hours on almost all household material if they have a moisture level of 16% or higher. Time is of the essence when it comes to hardwood floor water damage – the moisture, temperature, and dust layer beneath a wet wood floor can provide an ideal environment for mold and many other problems.

Type Of Wood

Before you can determine how to properly dry hardwood floor, you need to determine what type of wood flooring you have. The main types of hardwood floors are:

  • Strip Wood Flooring
  • Plank Wood Flooring
  • Engineered Wood Flooring
  • Laminate Wood Flooring: Laminate wood flooring has become very common these days. Please note that laminate floors are NOT considered wood or hardwood flooring. This type of flooring is most often replaced in the event of a flood and is hard to salvage because they have a low tolerance for moisture.

Amount Of Moisture

Moisture affects all floor types differently. “Normal” moisture content for wood floor can fluctuate between 6% and 12%. A flooded hardwood floor can have up to 40% moisture content and can retain well above the normal amount of moisture for weeks if left to dry on it’s own. Nails may begin to lift, glue may release causing separation between floor pieces, and tongue and groove floors often cup or buckle when moisture has been absorbed.

Degree Of Water Damage Already Present

After severe water damage, it is likely that wood floors will have to be replaced. Wood is specifically susceptible to mold growth, so it is important that you ensure that the floor and the sub-floor are completely dry. If floors have cupped, popped, or cracked, it may be an indication that the sub-floor has experienced water damage as well. If this has occurred, it will also need to be replaced before installing new dry hardwood floor.

If you decide to dry hardwood floors in place SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County has sophisticated drying equipment that forces airflow beneath the surface of the floor, allowing moisture to be released. Keep in mind that this can be a slow process and take up to seven days.

A restoration specialist can thoroughly inspect damage to determine the right plan of action for your home. They will work with you and your insurance company to decide the best option – drying or replacing the floor. The experts at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County have saved hundreds of hardwood floors by using advanced drying equipment and over 25 years experience. We’re here to help, so give as a call. 502.241.6861

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby also proudly serves Spencer, Henry and Trimble Counties. 

What to Do In The Event Of Frozen Pipes

2/13/2018 (Permalink)

Water bursting through frozen pipes is a common sight in homes during periods of very cold weather. You’d be surprised how many calls water damage restoration companies, such as SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County, get every winter to restore properties that are affected by frozen pipes. The remediation process requires expertise, but here’s what you can do to thaw frozen pipes and prevent water damage before it’s too late:

  • Locate the Frozen Pipe – If you’re not sure which pipe is frozen, turn on all faucets in your home. Check which faucet isn’t releasing water at all or just a trickle. The pipe leading to that faucet is likely frozen.   
  • Turn on the Faucet – Once you’ve located the frozen pipe, open the faucet leading to the frozen pipe. Open both the hot and cold handles. This will allow water to flow once you start thawing the pipe.
  • Start Thawing Near the Faucet – When thawing a frozen pipe, the best practice is to start closer to the faucet then work your way down to the frozen section. If you start closer to the blockage, the melting ice could get stuck behind the blockage. This creates more pressure in the pipe and increases the chances of the pipe breaking.
  • Thawing Exposed Pipes – There are several ways to thaw pipes that you can access:
    • Point a hair dryer at the frozen pipe, starting near the faucet. Follow proper safety precautions for the dryer and don’t come in contact with water when using the dryer.
    • Wrap hot towels, which have been dipped in hot water, around the frozen pipe. This method is slower, but potentially safer than the ones above.
    • Apply electric heat tape directly to the pipe. This tape insulates the pipe, defrosting it. You can leave the heat tape on the pipe and turn it on/off when you need to.  
  • Thawing Enclosed Pipes – You can thaw pipes that you don’t have direct access to in different ways:
    • Turn the heat up in your home and wait until the increased interior temperature thaws out the frozen pipe.
    • Position an infrared lamp in front of the portion of the wall where the frozen pipe is located. The heat from the lamp could penetrate the wall and help the pipe defrost.
    • As a last resort, cut out the section of the drywall in front of the frozen pipe to easily access it. You can then use one of the methods for thawing exposed pipes.
  • Know the Risks – When trying to thaw a frozen pipe yourself using a heat source, you run the risk of injury and fire. Make sure to take proper safety measures when using electrical equipment. In addition, if you don’t start thawing near the faucet, the pipe could burst and cause water to flow into your home.

Water Damage in your Home as a result of a frozen pipe? Contact SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County today to speak to a Mitigation Specialist. 502.241.6861

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County also proudly serves Spencer, Trimble, Henry Counties. 

Top Causes of Water Damage In Your Basement

2/9/2018 (Permalink)

Basements can flood just about any time of the year, and you might be surprised that it can even happen during the winter. The reality is that winter can present the most risk and only some of these are preventable. It is never a bad idea to have a water damage restoration company as part of your home maintenance list of providers, so you can respond quickly if you experience a problem.

The main causes of water damage basement flooding are ice floes, frozen concrete, blocked drains, and faulty plumbing. If you live near a river you could find that an ice floe has blocked water flow and caused flooding in your neighborhood. This is not a common occurrence, but can happen. The other causes are more common.

The most common is a pipe break due to faulty plumbing or not having proper precautions in place to avoid pipes freezing. When water freezes, it expands and can cause a burst pipe. This is more common when pipes are weakened but can happen even with newer plumbing. Freezing water can also cause a problem in your home’s concrete foundation. Additionally, concrete expands and contracts during seasonal temperature changes, which can result in cracks that let water seep in, sometimes rapidly.

A blocked or slow drain is a problem any time of the year, but it can be a real problem during warmer periods during the winter when snow is melting and needing a place to drain.

During warmer months, you should take the time to check your property for good drainage and any cracks you might notice in your home’s foundation. Check your basement and plumbing throughout the year to reduce the chances of water damage from the causes you can control.

If you should encounter water damage, give SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County a call. 502.241.6861  Any time of the year, we are here to restore your home, whether the water damage is a plumbing issue or winter woe . We can also work with your insurance company.

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County also proudly serves Spencer, Henry and Trimble Counties.

Top 3 Things You Should Know About Water Damage

2/7/2018 (Permalink)

Water damage can be a huge hassle if not handled correctly. A surprise flood or leak can cause major issues with your walls, flooring, and furniture. When you are faced with excess water in your home, here are three things to keep in mind when facing water damage:

  1. Don’t wait to get help. It is important to get help as quickly as possible from a professional service to prevent major water damage in your home. The sooner you call a reliable team experienced in water damage restoration, the better. Getting the situation taken care of as soon as possible will prevent mold growth and other serious problems in your home.
  2. Start drying the area right away. The more you can dry the affected areas, the better. Mopping up extra water with towels and rags will help the area dry faster. When drying the area, don’t use a vacuum to remove water or use other fans or electrical appliances as they can be potentially dangerous.
  3. The damage can spread deeper than the surface. Even if you clean up all the standing water, it is likely that more water seeped through the floor and baseboards. If this extra water underneath your floor is not taken care of, it can quickly become a bigger problem, leading to mold and damage to the structure of your home.

If you are faced with unexpected flooding or leaks and are worried about water damage, give us a call at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County.  502.241.6861

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby also proudly serves Spencer, Henry and Trimble Counties. 

What Is Required For Water Damage Restoration

2/5/2018 (Permalink)

The following is provided by the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification.

What Is Required For Water Damage Restoration?

Companies that perform water damage restoration have to be skilled in a number of areas to stay current in their field. Technicians in the industry have to combat a number of threats, some visible and some invisible, before their job is done. Structural weakening, chemical runoff, electrical hazards, dangerous wildlife, and deadly microbes are all common risks technicians have to contend with. Without the proper education and equipment, a technician risks grave injury and may leave health risks behind for a family to encounter. Fortunately, technicians in the industry have access to the educational resources offered by the Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification, or IICRC.

After getting certified in water damage restoration and a number of related fields, a professional in the field will be able to identify and neutralize any problems they are likely to face at a job site. In most cases, a technician is called to a home following a flood or plumbing disaster. In either case, the initial threat a technician has to encounter is hazardous standing liquid. Floods and sewage backups are normally host to dangerous chemicals, like oil runoff, bacteria and viruses. Before any repairs can be done on the home, a technician will need to be outfitted with the proper safety wear and begin investigating where the liquid is pooling. Moisture meters can detect the level of moisture in and behind drywall, carpet, and other areas. Using minimally-invasive tools, a technician can quickly find pockets of heavy moisture in areas not readily accessible.

This is important because only thorough drying will ensure that further destruction does not occur. Most companies use a combination of industrial  air movers and dehumidifiers to extract moisture from both materials and the air. This process can take some time, but diagnostic tools like moisture meters help technicians monitor the drying process. Once all of the materials inside the home have reached safe levels, mold and other microbial growth can be halted.

The most severe threats a water damage restoration company has to deal with are molds and other pathogens. These  contaminants can remain a major hazard for years after they have taken root, and can cause insidious health problems while remaining hidden in vents or behind walls. Trained technicians are capable of neutralizing molds and other pathogens by utilizing special  cleaning products and quickly removing compromised materials. Being able to identify mold growth is an important skill for a professional, and stemming the growth of a colony can be the difference between saving a home and having to condemn it. Certified firms are capable of quickly working through a property and disposing of anything that is beyond repair. Anything that is salvageable but soaked is separated, cleaned properly, and promptly dried. If the building’s structural integrity has been affected, these technicians can identify it and alert the homeowner and the insurance representative to its presence.

Without professional help, a homeowner will never know for sure that their home is safe to live in again. This is why the help of a certified technician is so valuable. They don’t just repair homes, they restore normalcy.

Questions about this article? Contact the professionals here at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County today to speak to a Mitigation Specialist. 502.241.6861

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County also proudly serves Trimble, Henry, and Spencer Counties. 

How To Repair Water Damaged Ceilings?

1/22/2018 (Permalink)

It starts with a small stain, then quickly turns into a huge unsightly bubble. If left untreated, that patch of water damaged ceiling will turn into a bigger mess.

Water damaged ceilings can weaken your house’s foundation and can even be a threat to your health because of mold growth.

But don’t worry! You can prevent that from happening by repairing the damaged part as soon as possible. Here’s how to get it done:

Look for the source

The first thing that you should do is to find the source of the leak. How do you that? By looking for certain clues. The weather, for one, will clue you in regarding the location of leak.

For example, if the leak happens only when it’s raining or snowing, the source could either be a clogged gutter, cracked shingles, or an ice dam build up.

A water damaged ceiling that continues to worsen even during dry months is most probably due to a busted pipe.

Either way, it’ll be useless to fix a water damaged ceiling without patching up the source of the leak first. You’ll just end up shelling out more money in the long run.

Remove the damaged ceiling

Once the source has been fixed, the next step is to prep the area for repair. Make sure that you have your safety goggles, gloves, and mask on.

Protect the area directly below the water damaged ceiling by placing a plastic tarp and a bucket above the plastic tarp if you need to drain a bowed ceiling.

If the area has bulged out, it means that there’s water pooling above it. Carefully poke it with a screwdriver.

If the damaged part has bowed between the ceiling’s joists due to too much water, then it would be wise to just remove it. Do this by using a wrecking bar.

Dry the area

Make sure the entire area is completely dry and that any mold growth has been treated before you start the repair.

Use fans to speed up the process. Leave the windows and doors open for better air circulation as well.

Fix it up

For spot treatments, start by scraping off the paint on the affected area. After that, spray the area with a primer. Allow it to dry before putting a fresh coat of paint.

For bigger damages, you need to saw off the area, and then use a fine grit sandpaper to remove all signs of sharp edges and bumps before patching it up. You can use the existing lath to key the patch into. As for the finishing coat, a regular joint compound will do.

For complete replacement, place a new sheet of wallboard over the area that has been prepped. If you’re having a hard time propping it up, secure it with temporary furring strips before putting the ceiling screws.

Cover the seams with a drywall tape before applying a joint compound. Once the joint compound is completely dry, smoothen it out with sandpaper. Apply a primer and let it dry, and then cover it with the same paint color as the rest.

Keep in mind that not all affected areas need to be removed. However, this should be examined by a professional first. Some of the factors that will be considered for this are the following:

  • The water is not contaminated
  • There’s no evidence of mold growth
  • The damaged area is structurally sound

The key here is to act quickly before the problem worsens. Remember that it’s always cheaper to treat water damaged ceilings when the problem has just started.

Water Damage in your Home or Business? Contact the professionals here at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County today to speak to a Mitigation Specialist. 502.241.6861

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County also proudly serves Spencer, Henry, and Trimble Counties. 502.241.6861

What To Do When A Pipe Burst In Your Home

1/19/2018 (Permalink)

No homeowner can go for long without plumbing problems occurring: a stopped up toilet, various leaks from kitchen appliances and more. The most damaging plumbing problem occurs when a pipe bursts, sometimes flooding your home before you even know what’s happened. That’s a lot of water damage going on at once, and you’ll need to deal with it as soon as possible. Besides damaging materials like drywall and flooring, the long term effects of so much excess moisture translates to mold growth. Mold spores can travel throughout your ventilation system wreaking havoc on everyone’s health.

If the flood happened in a small area, perhaps in only one room, you should be able to perform most of the clean up yourself. However, if a major water leak has occurred affecting multiple rooms, even traveling from an upper section to a lower level of your home, or the leaking has gone unnoticed for more than 8 hours, you should contact a professional water mitigation company since very specialized drying equipment will likely be necessary.

Here’s what you need to do in order to handle a minimal amount of water damage:

Avoid electric shock!
When dealing with water invasion, your first task should be to shut the electrical power to your home if the leak has occurred near electrical appliances and outlets. This way you can focus on your clean up efforts and not have to worry about an electric shock.

Salvage what you can
It’s a given that you’re going to have soaked carpets and furniture and much of it may be ruined beyond repair. This is the time for some item-sorting triage. Move anything that is salvageable to a dry area, assuming these items have not absorbed a major amount of water. Your carpet will likely have to be replaced, but you should remove the water-soaked sections quickly.

It’s time to mop the floors
If there’s still considerable water on the floors use towels and a mop to dry the flooring. A wet-dry Shop-Vac can be used to effectively remove excess water. If you don’t have your own you can usually rent a unit at your local hardware and home improvement store.

Use fresh, dry air
Assuming it’s not raining outside, you should open doors and windows in order to bring fresh, dry air into your home. Also, if you have fans (any size will do) set them up near the flooded area and turn them on to their highest setting.

The last two steps utilize advanced methods for removing all of that excess water. You may not feel particularly confident in performing these tasks, and that’s understandable. But don’t fret, just call SERVPRO of Oldham Shelby and we will handle your water damage problem expertly. 502.241.6861

Use a dehumidifier
You likely won’t have a portable dehumidifier on hand, but these units can be purchased or rented—or maybe you might have a friend or neighbor who has one and can borrow it. Dehumidifiers remove moisture directly from the air and can dry items more quickly than simple fans. However, you will have to monitor the unit and periodically empty any water collected by it. The reservoir is usually located at the back of the unit, so check often to see if it is full.

Use desiccant products
When you purchase garments or shoes you’ll notice that small packets of silica gel are often included in the packaging. That’s because silica gel is very good at absorbing moisture. So, besides using dehumidifiers and fans, you should visit your hardware and home improvement store to buy desiccant products. There are different versions, but the most common types are available in tubs or sachets of silica gel. Place the silica gel (in whatever form) near walls or flooring that have absorbed moisture.

The bottom line…
Remember, if you notice that water has seeped into the sub floor or the drywall, the most prudent course to take is to simply contact a professional restoration company immediately. These specialists possess all of the equipment, knowledge and experience to handle any sort of water damage. Additionally, they can remove and restore items and materials that have the potential to develop mold. Also, be aware that the longer porous materials are exposed to water saturation increases the deterioration of those materials, causing possible structural instability over time. Much of these materials will not be salvageable, particularly carpet backing, insulation and adhesives.

Professional restoration companies will employ thermal imaging technology, moisture readers and professional-grade drying equipment during the clean up process. This will go a long way in preventing any secondary damages and will also aid in safe-guarding your health and the overall stability of your home.

Water Damage In Your Home Or Business? Contact the professionals here at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County. 502.241.6861

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County also proudly serves Spencer, Henry and Trimble Counties.

What To Do After A Water Damage?

1/18/2018 (Permalink)

What’s the first thing that you are supposed to do after a major storm passes through your property? Apart from a storm, there are other factors that can cause flooding in your building, including burst pipes, appliance breakdowns, sewer back-up, faulty sump-pump and more. This can be a difficult time for you, but there are steps that you can take to feel in control of the situation. Here is what SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County water damage restoration recommends:

Safety First

If the water damage was serious enough for you to leave your house to stay elsewhere, you should make sure that your flooded house is safe before you return. As a necessary safety precaution, check for any noticeable structural damage, such as loosened foundation elements, cracked walls, holes, and warping before entering your home. If there are any damages to sewer lines, electric devices, gas and water pipes, contact your utility companies immediately. Also, remember to switch off the fuse box and the main power source for your house because water and electricity don’t mix.

Take Pictures

Before you think about doing anything regarding the damage caused by water, make sure that you take clear photos or video for your insurer. Soft copies are useful because they can be copied and stored electronically. If you choose to dry out your property and make repairs before documenting the damage, you could significantly reduce your expected compensation.

Be Concerned About Your Health

The water in your flooded house may be clear, but there’s a chance it could be contaminated by household chemicals or even sewage. In light of this, you are advised to wear rubber gloves, high water-resistant boots or waders when you enter your home. Any food that may have been affected by the water should be discarded. Also, use only boiled water until the water entering your house is declared to be safe for consumption.

Contact Your Insurance Company

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County advises that you contact your insurance provider immediately. Homeowners insurance varies depending on the type of coverage that you have. Your provider will send someone (an insurance adjuster) to evaluate the damage and determine if it’s covered by your policy. This is why it’s essential to document every detail before cleaning out your home and making repairs. The photos and videos that you took may be used by the insurance company to assess the damage correctly. If there are any repairs that you want to be done immediately, you should talk to the insurance company about them. 

Cleanup

You should start the cleanup process after your insurance company has assessed the damage and advise you to go ahead. Anything that’s not safe for use should be thrown away. You may also be advised to remove the drywall, insulation, and flooring to prevent mildew and mold from spreading in your house. Also, furniture should be dried out, cleaned thoroughly or thrown away if the damaged caused is beyond repair. 

Mold starts to emerge 24-hours after a flood, and if left to grow, it can be very frustrating to eliminate them from your flooded house. In this light, you are advised to remove your belongings from water and dry them as soon as possible. However, you should seek the help of an expert to assess the damage before doing anything. 

Water Damage In Your Home Or Business? Contact the professionals at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby today to speak to a Mitigation Specialist. 502.241.6861

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby also proudly serves Spencer, Henry and Trimble Counties. 

Obvious Signs Of Water Damage

1/8/2018 (Permalink)

Detecting water damage can be a difficult task as often water damage losses don’t become evident right away. In fact, most of them exist over a prolonged period before being identified and restored. By that time, the underlying problem causing the water damage becomes severe and managing it becomes extremely difficult. For avoiding any such situation and ensuring that you contact SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County before the problem turns bigger, you must get acquainted with the preliminary warning signs. The section below would introduce you to the most common indicators of water damage.  

Sound- If you think that all the signs of water damage are meant to be seen, you are wrong. There are some signs that can be heard. If you are hearing sounds of dripping water, rushing water, or creaking floorboards, it seems that your home might have already become a victim of water damage. It’s true that such sounds might also occur in spite of having a healthy plumbing system; however, still, you must get your home checked for water damage if you hear the sounds constantly.  

Smell- You must also keep your nose alert for detecting moisture or water damage in your home. Dampness boasts a distinct odor; it might resemble the pungent smell we usually associate with mold. So, when checking your home for water damage, you should look for smell besides other obvious indicators. 

 Puddles- If there’s a leak in your home’s plumbing system or if something in the system is dripping, you might soon see pools of water develop along the problematic area. Whenever you find any unusual puddle, do monitor it and find out whether it returns after being cleaned up. A puddle that comes back even after being cleaned up might be a sign of a seepage or leak.  

Mold- Mold typically occurs only when there’s water damage. You might not need to hire a  restoration service provider if condensation in the bathroom has resulted in mold formation. However, you will have to treat mold as a sign of excessive moisture formation in certain parts of your house and do the needful for getting those affected areas dried as quickly as possible. Getting rid of mold is also necessary for health reasons.  

Coolness- Are you finding it hard to heat up your home? If yes, treat the problem as a sign of dampness in your walls. Accumulated moisture tends to draw out heat of the walls so that it can get evaporated. This makes the walls and the entire home much colder.  Discoloration- Here, it must be noted that discoloration can occur due to a number of reasons; so, it’s important to make sure that the discoloration in your home is actually a result of water damage. If the discoloration has been caused by water “streaks” running down along an end of your house, it’s definitely a sign of water damage. In most cases, those streaks occur due to an overfull gutter. 

Water Damage In Your Home Or Business? Contact SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County today to speak to a Mitigation Specialist. 502.241.6861 

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County also proudly serves Spencer, Henry and Trimble Counties. 

Top Causes of Basement Flooding During The Winter Season

1/2/2018 (Permalink)

Basements can flood just about any time of the year, and you might be surprised that it can even happen during the winter. The reality is that winter can present the most risk and only some of these are preventable. It is never a bad idea to have a water damage restoration company as part of your home maintenance list of providers, so you can respond quickly if you experience a problem.

The main causes of water damage basement flooding are ice floes, frozen concrete, blocked drains, and faulty plumbing. If you live near a river, you could find that an ice floe has blocked water flow and caused flooding in your neighborhood. This is not a common occurrence, but can happen. The other causes are more common.

The most common is a pipe break due to faulty plumbing or not having proper precautions in place to avoid pipes freezing. When water freezes, it expands and can cause a burst pipe. This is more common when pipes are weakened but can happen even with newer plumbing. Freezing water can also cause a problem in your home’s concrete foundation. Additionally, concrete expands and contracts during seasonal temperature changes, which can result in cracks that let water seep in, sometimes rapidly.

A blocked or slow drain is a problem any time of the year, but it can be a real problem during warmer periods during the winter when snow is melting and needing a place to drain.

During warmer months, you should take the time to inspect your property for good drainage and any cracks you might notice in your home’s foundation. Check your basement and plumbing throughout the year to reduce the chances of water damage from the causes you can control.

If you should encounter water damage, give us a call at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County. 502.241.6861. Any time of the year, we are here to restore your home, whether the water damage is a plumbing issue, winter woes or from putting out a fire in your home. We can also work with your insurance company.

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County also proudly serves Spencer, Henry and Trimble Counties. 

Water Damage: Consequences

12/25/2017 (Permalink)

Water Damage: Consequences

Water damage can cause a great deal of destruction and can be caused by a number of things. Several different factors come into play; a leaky pipe, clogged drain, and flooding from a storm.

Water damage can cause a variety of serious problems if the issue is not addressed immediately. Restoration is critical when water damage threaten your home or business. Mitigation must be initiated immediately following water damage. Water damage restoration can involve removing excess water as well as applying special disinfectants and cleaners to take care of any residue that was left behind.

If excess water is not removed properly it can cause a pungent odor. In addition, excess water can cause bacteria to develop which can cause serious issues. Excess water can also cause floor boards and walls to decay.  The water following a flood can be removed by using a truck mount and wand to extract. Once the water is removed the cleaning solution can be applied over the entire area. Normally the disinfectants used contains a pleasant and fresh odor.

Water damage restoration may also involve having to tear up and throw away carpeting and padding. Depending on the degree of water damage will determine whether or not carpeting can be saved and restored. If carpeting can be salvaged it must first be dried during the truck mount extraction process. 

Water damage can be quite destructive and unexpected. However, if you are prepared for a flood emergency you will know exactly what steps you need to take in order to recover.

Water Damage In Your Home Or Business? Contact the professionals here at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County. 502.241.6861

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County also serves Spencer, Henry and Trimble Counties. 

What Can Be Saved From A Water Damage

12/19/2017 (Permalink)

When your home has been affected by water damage, you may be tempted to want to throw everything in the trash and start over. Water damage can have devastating effects and can be difficult to clean and restore a property to its original state. Fortunately, at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County, we are experts at restoration from water damage and can help guide you when it comes to restoring your home after an accident.

The good news is, plenty of things can be saved and restored after being affected by water. However, a lot of this depends on quick action on the part of the property owner. The longer a home goes without being treated, the worse the damage becomes. Mold begins to grow in the damp environment and can be irreversibly damaging. Mold spores can begin to spread throughout the home and linger in the air, where it can be inhaled and cause negative effects to the inhabitants. The sooner you act to rid your home of water damage, the better. At SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County, we offer 24-hour emergency service, so we can begin the cleanup process right away.

Some things should not be kept after having been subjected to extreme water damage. Things like mattresses, box springs, pillows, particle board and other similar items tend to harbor moisture and foster the growth of microbes. We recommend replacing items like this to prevent illness and the spread of microbes in the future. If you are unsure of whether you should toss something or not, we are happy to consult with you.

Water damage in your home is a frustrating experience to live through, but if you work with us at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County, you can be sure that your home will be restored to its original beauty.

Water Damage In Your Home Or Business? Contact the professionals at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County. 502.241.6861

5 Frequently Asked Questions About Water Damage

12/12/2017 (Permalink)

5 Frequently Asked Questions about Water Damage

Water damage can be a traumatic experience for homeowners. Being informed about the causes, consequences, and ways to handle water damage can help you overcome the problem more efficiently. Here are five frequently asked questions and answers about water damage:

1. What causes water damage?

  1. Water damage can occur after natural disasters, such as thunderstorms or hurricanes that cause flooding, from pipe bursts, appliance malfunctions, roof leaks, foundation leaks, septic tank overflows, poor drainage, and more. Flash flooding, pipe bursts, and sewage backups are especially dangerous as they can produce several inches of water in less than a day.

2. Why is water damage dangerous?

  1. Floodwater that comes from outside and from sewage backups contains dangerous contaminants like viruses and bacteria. If the water isn’t drained within 24-48 hours, structural damage and mold growth can ensue. Even water leaks that infiltrate your home slowly can cause damage to the building and lead to mold growth. Mold left unchecked will spread quickly through the home.

3. What should I do after a flood, or sewage or water leak?

  1. Firstly, contact a water damage restoration company as soon as possible. Don’t wait as water can cause mold and irremediable damage to the wood, walls, and carpet in your home. Afterwards, contact your insurance company to start the claim process. If safe, shut off the utilities in your home to avoid further damage. Don’t enter your home if it has suffered structural damage. Don’t walk through floodwater if electricity hasn’t been turned off and to avoid contaminants.

4. How do certified technicians typically handle water damage?

The first thing professionals do is remove damaged materials that will either be restored or discarded. Materials include baseboards, insulation, furniture, carpeting, upholstery, carpet padding, fragile woods, drywall, and more. After the damaged items are removed, the technicians begin drying out the water and disinfecting the areas. Specialized tools like air movers and dehumidifiers are typically involved in the drying process. Professionals will also handle mold damage in the restoration process. Mold-infected surfaces will be disinfected and restored as quickly as possible to prevent it from spreading.

5. Will my homeowners insurance cover water damage?

Homeowners insurance provides coverage for damage that is sudden and accidental (such as water heater ruptures or pipe bursts). However, flood damage, no matter the source of the water, is NOT covered by standard homeowners policies. Flooding can occur from storms, sewer backup, and overflowing rivers, ponds, lakes, and oceans.

However, you can purchase flood insurance through the National Flood Insurance Program. Note that water damage that results from lack of maintenance is not covered on a standard homeowners insurance policy.

The best way to avoid water damage in your home is to take steps to prevent it. For flood water damage repair and mold remediation service, contact SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County. 502.241.6861 

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County also serves Spencer, Henry, Trimble. 

Preventing Water Damage From The Outside

12/6/2017 (Permalink)

Preventing Water Damage from the Outside

Water has a way of sneaking up on you when you least expect it, destroying everything in its path, and completely taking over parts of your home. This can cause an immense amount of stress and take a lot of work to get back to normal. It usually takes the work of a certified and insured professional water damage restoration company like SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County to repair the damage. However, there is a way to prevent water from coming into your home from outside before it is too late. Here are essential tips to safeguard your home’s exterior from water:

Roof

  • Check your roof to ensure the shingles, flashings or tiles aren’t missing, broken, cracked, curled or damaged in other ways.
  • Make sure the vents, flues, chimneys, air conditioners, and evaporative coolers are properly installed and in good shape.
  • Check for leaks around rooftop air-conditioning units, vents for exhaust or plumbing, or other specialized equipment.
  • Cut tree limbs that hang above your roof so they don’t cling to shingles and trap moisture. Leaves or twigs can also clog your gutters.

Gutters and Downspouts

  • Ensure these are clean, free from debris, and in good condition so that water can flow freely.
  • Install metal screens to prevent leaves, twigs, silt and other debris from clogging the gutters and drainage holes.
  • Ensure downspouts direct water at least five feet away from your home’s foundation. Install downspout extensions if needed.

Doors and Windows

  • Check for leaks near the corners of your doors and windows. Signs of leaks include peeling paint, paint discoloration or swollen frames.
  • Protect exterior doors and windows from the sun, rain, and snow by installing overhangs above them.
  • Close your doors and windows to check for a tight fit. Look for cracks between the sash and frame of your windows.
  • Repair or replace damaged flashing or weather-stripping around windows.
  • Install window well covers if you don’t already have them. This will prevent water and debris from getting trapped in your window well, causing water to eventually seep into your basement.

Walls

  • Check and repair cracked or broken siding boards, bricks, stone or another masonry, as well as structural sheathing.
  • Seal any openings from wiring, plumbing, phone, cable, and heating and air conditioning lines with foam or caulk. Repair any damaged or unpainted wood surrounding these openings.
  • Check for signs of termite activity on the walls and the wooden structures around your foundation. Termites can eat wood, plaster, and even metal siding.
  • Ensure that the exhaust vent doors properly open and close.
  • Remove any shrubs and other landscaping features from along the walls.
  • When irrigating the garden, avoid directing water towards the house to prevent excessive water near the foundation.

When it comes to water damage, you can never be too safe and protected. If you follow these steps, you can protect your home from exterior water damage. If water does sneak up on you and wreaks havoc in your home, be sure to give SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County a call. 502.241.6861  We have the proper training, tools, and equipment to get your home back to normal in no time.

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County also proudly serves Spencer, Trimble and Henry Counties. 

Preventing Water Damage To Your Furnace

12/5/2017 (Permalink)

Every winter, especially if you live in a cold climate, your home is under assault from the elements. Eventually, that constant assault can cause your home’s systems to fail. One common result of these failures is water damage. And while any type of water damage is bad, there are certain types of damage that can be worse than others. That’s especially true in the winter.

Perhaps no system in your home is more important in the winter than your furnace. Without it, you’d be in big trouble. So while the impact of home water damage is bad no matter how you look at it, having your furnace damaged when the temps are freezing outside can be catastrophic. So let’s talk about things you can do to protect your furnace from water damage should the worst case scenario happen to you this winter.

Elevate your furnace

Furnaces are hidden from view for a reason. They’re not exactly focal points of a home you want people’s eyes drawn towards. Whether it’s in a crawl space, basement or mechanical closet, it’s typically in a place you naturally don’t find yourself visiting very often. One way to help protect your furnace from water damage is to create an elevated platform upon which the furnace can sit. If it’s the case your furnace is found in an unfinished basement, you can simply pour a concrete block and install the furnace there. If it’s in a closet, it may make more sense to create a wooden box to hold the furnace. In either case, having the additional 18-24″ of height can typically protect against most types of home water damage.  Granted, in massive flood events this isn’t going to have much effect, but then again there isn’t much you can do from a preventative stand point when mother nature decides to take charge.

Install water sensors near your furnace

Another way to help prevent massive damage to your furnace is to install a water sensor near the unit. We’ve blogged about these systems before at length, but they work by sensing water intrusions and alerting you, either by a loud alarm sound or by notifying you via your cell phone. Some even work by shutting off the main water valve to your home so that in the event the water damage is caused by your home’s water supply, that supply will be shut off to prevent additional damage.

Call us if you get water damage this winter!

While we’ve tried to help you limit damage to your home’s furnace in the event a flood happens this winter, what we haven’t discussed is the damage that probably has occurred.  We sincerely hope that you won’t try the cleanup and drying process on your own. We’ve seen so many homeowners try this before, only to call us month’s later once it’s clear they’ve got major problems. Perhaps the biggest problem is that because they waited so long to have professional diagnose and fix the problems, the house has even more damage to it and their insurance company probably won’t honor any claim filed for the loss because it happened so long ago. Don’t let that happen to you! Make sure you act immediately in the event of a water loss!

Water Damage In Your Home Or Business? Contact SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County today at 502.241.6861

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County also proudly serves Spencer, Trimble and Henry Counties as well. 

Water Damage In Your Home- The Necessary Steps

12/4/2017 (Permalink)

One of the most damaging and devastating things any homeowner can experience is water damage. The term ‘water damage’ entails a wide range of possible losses caused by sudden presence of water in your home, where it can lead to destructive processes like rusting of steel, rotting of wooden components, etc.

Water damage can be caused due to different reasons such as burst pipes or catastrophic events like storm or flood.

When your home suffers from water damage, you will suddenly panic, worrying about what you can do now and what will happen to your stuff. The most important question you’ll ask yourself is:

Will the damage be covered by homeowner’s insurance? There is no doubt that water damage can be troublesome and the more you know about it, the better you can handle it. Here are some important things you must know about water damage.

1. Insurance Policies 

You may think that whether water damage is caused by flood or a burst pipe, it is the same. However, it is not the case. Flood damage is not covered under standard home insurance policies. If you live in an area where there is a possibility of flood, then you will probably have a policy through the National Flood Insurance Policy (NFIP).

You need to specify the claim you are making, whether it is water damage or flood damage, so that it can be addressed accordingly.

2. Bummer! Insurance does not cover all Water Damage 

It is important that you review your insurance coverage and find out about any exclusion related to water damage. Most policies provide insurance coverage on sudden damage, for example, if there was a bad storm then the water damage will be covered under insurance.

However, if water damage is caused due to improper maintenance on your part or gradual leaks over time, then insurance will not cover such claims.

3. Emergency Mitigation 

Once water damage has occurred, you must begin emergency mitigation to protect your home from further damage. How you handle water damage in the first 24 hours is critical for your property damage claims.

There can be serious safety risks if water is not completely dried. It is best to contact water damage restoration companies to get the job done. They will have the right water removal and drying equipment to dry out your home and prevent further damage.

4. Contacting the Insurance Company

If your home has suffered water damage, then insurance companies should be contacted right away to make the claim. An adjuster will be sent by the insurance company to assess the damage and determine if it is covered by insurance. If your loss is covered by insurance, the sooner you contact the insurance company, the sooner they’ll pay out.

The insurance company may not send the adjuster right away so it is best to gather evidence for the claim. Take photos of the damage, the water, before, during and after clean up.

If your home ever suffers from water damage, keep these simple things in mind to prevent further damage and make the insurance claim to compensate for your loss.

Water Damage In Your Home Or Business? Contact SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby today to speak to a Mitigation Specialist. 502.241.6861

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby also proudly serves Spencer, Henry and Trimble Counties. 

Why Water Damage Should Be Addressed Fast

11/29/2017 (Permalink)

Water damage can be caused by a variety of factors including flooding, a burst pipe or an overflowing washing machine. No matter what the cause of the water damage, it is critical that it is repaired as quickly as possible to avoid serious financial and health consequences.

If water damage is left untreated, you run the risk of the structural integrity of your home deteriorating. Water damage can lead to floors bowing, ceilings caving in, and walls becoming weak. Repairs for this sort of damage can run very high and put you in a difficult spot financially. In addition to the financial cost, if the structural integrity deteriorates enough you may not be able to stay in your home as repairs are being made due to safety concerns.

Mold is also a significant concern when dealing with water damage. There is a 48-hour window to dry out the home before the mold can grow. Once mold starts to grow, it is costly to remediate in addition to the various health risks it poses to you and your family. Due to the short window of time to dry the water damaged area, it is recommended you bring in an experienced professional who has the right equipment to get the job done.

Once the area has been completed dried, it is essential to get the affected areas cleaned as soon as possible. The water especially if it is flood water is filled with bacteria and has often been contaminated by the sewer water. It is essential to use professional grade cleaner and focus on all of the areas the water seeped into including all the wall surfaces.

If your home has been affected by severe water damage, it is an extremely stressful time especially if you have lost your personal belongings. Bringing in a professional restoration company will make sure the job is done correctly and quickly, allowing you to start feeling better.

Water Damage In Your Home Or Business? Contact the professionals here at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby today to speak to a Mitigation Specialist. 502.241.6861

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County also proudly serves Spencer, Henry and Trimble County. 

How To Correct And Prevent Moisture In Walls

11/28/2017 (Permalink)

When you have a water leak or moisture that reaches your walls or ceiling a lot of problems are going to occur. The longer that you let the problem persist, the worst the damage will be. To avoid mold and structural damage, it is best to prevent and at least correct moisture issues.

Usually doing do requires the aid of a professional. SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County is a provider of water damage and mold remediation. Call us today for assistance at 502.241.6861

IDENTIFYING MOISTURE IN WALLS

Damp patches, blotches or streaks are usually the first noticeable signs of moisture in walls. Their color, which can range from brown to dark yellow, can dictate the cause of the moisture. Other indications may include peeling paint, crumbling, discoloration, cracking, and hanging of drywall tape.

To correct the moisture problem in walls, the first thing to do it to determine the extent of the damage by visual inspection. For precise results, a moisture meter can be used.

The next step is to pinpoint the cause of the water damage and start appropriate repairs to prevent the spread of the damage.

Here are different cases of moisture damage and how to address each.

Damp Patches in Lower Walls

When the damage occurs on the lower parts of the wall, the problem is identified as rising dump. It is caused by a defective damp proof course. The problem can sometimes be attributed to poor site drainage or bad subfloor ventilation.

Fixing the problem involves improving the drainage of the site by directing water away from the building. To prevent the formation of moisture in the soil below, adequate space must be left between the soil and the floor boards.

Condensation Issues

This occurs due to poor ventilation and over-efficient drought proofing, which results in a buildup of moist air in the building.

The problem can be rectified by setting up vents or extractor fans in the moisture-prone parts of the building.

Damp Patches All Over Walls

Damp patches all over the walls are caused by the penetration of moisture from outside into the brickwork. This occurs through cracks and other gaps.

Preventing this involves maintaining external walls including the paintwork in top-notch condition, and sealing any gaps around door and window frames.

Roof Issues

Poor flashing or leaking gutters and drainpipes may be blamed for moisture in the top parts of the wall. These culprits are all located outside the structure which makes spotting and correcting them easy.

If any of these issues are present at your home or business, don't delay in contacting the professionals here at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County today. We also proudly serve the counties of Henry, Trimble and Spencer. 

Structural Drying Techniques That Can Totally Eliminate Water Damage

11/21/2017 (Permalink)

Structural Drying Techniques that Can Totally Eliminate Water Damage

Flooding is a type of disaster one cannot control. Be it from the excessive downpour of rain or a broken pipe, we know that floods can generate numerous damages in your residential and commercial places. When water enters a building, it immediately soaks up anything it comes in contact with. Materials made out of paper, electrical wiring, and even the durability of your walls and floors are at stake when it comes to the destructive consequences left by flooding; and the majority of the time, these items and structures do find themselves under the mercy of the waves. 

Dealing with the aftermath of a flood can range from being very simple to really complicated situations. Floods that do not even touch your ankles can be easily addressed with equipment that can be found in your home. Mops and rags will soak up and also dry the water that has entered in the room; if you want the drying process to be quicker, you can use a floor or a ceiling fan to get the job done.

For floods that have left a bigger catastrophe, however, mops and electric fans might be too small to get the job done. When you are facing this situation, the best solution is to contact the professionals immediately so they can perform what is called structural drying.

What is Structural Drying?

In its simplest terms, structural drying is the process wherein restoration companies utilize a strategy which saves time, money, and resources when it comes to drying a given space. Before structural drying, most afflicted areas were stripped off from floor to ceiling in order to remove the excess liquid that was left during the flooding. It is time consuming because it takes time to remove all the damaged areas of your home and replace them with a more durable material.

Why is it important to remove excess water, you ask? Water that has not been thoroughly removed from your floors, walls, and contents can further damage them. It promotes wood rotting, weakens the structural integrity of your space, and creates perfect places for mold to manifest.

Given the importance of removing the liquid from your home, it is in your best interest that restoration companies do what they must to protect your home from secondary water damages. With structural drying, the process of drying your home will be faster and cheaper than traditional methods.

What Happens During Structural Drying?

Restoration companies follow a set of principles when they are facing a structural drying project:

  • They must actively extract the water with special tools
  • Use air movers to evaporate moisture
  • Dehumidify the air to prevent secondary damages from showing (e.g. wood rotting and mold)
  • Maintain the ideal temperature for evaporation and dehumidification

Because of today’s technology, restoration companies can now eliminate water without the need to remove your walls or your floors. We use hi-tech equipment like dehumidifiers and air movers to dry the space, use scientifically proven methods that help quicken the drying process, and utilize techniques that uses less manipulation of contents.

With structural drying, you and your home will immediately receive the relief you need when clearing out the aftermath of flooding.

Water Damage In Your Home Or Business? Contact the professionals at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County. 502.241.6861

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County also proudly serves Henry, Trimble and Spencer Counties in Kentucky. 

Washing Machine Water Damages: Causes, Solutions and more

11/13/2017 (Permalink)

Washing machines are one of the most common sources of water damage in the home, and the damage can be costly. After paying the deductible, the national average claim for water damage caused by washing machines is over $5,000.

Since each washing machine has multiple ways of causing water damage, many homeowners do not fully understand the risks, prevention options, or cleanup options. Knowing just a little about how your washing machine can cause water damage can help you save thousands of dollars and a lot of headaches.

Supply Hose Leaks Cause Most Washing Machine Water Damage

More than 50% of all washing machine water damage claims can be traced back to a supply hose failure. This can be caused by:

  • Pinching the hose while installing or replacing a washing machine, causing a hairline break
  • A poor connection to either the washing machine or wall
  • The hose’s own aging, which can lead to brittleness

Washing machine intake hoses are high-flow lines and can output over 600 gallons of water in an hour.

If your washing machine’s supply hose is more than 5 years old or isn’t steel braided, replace them as soon as possible. It may sound a little excessive until you realize that a new pair of hoses can cost under $30 and can easily be installed without a plumber.

You may also want to consider high-durability washing machine supply hoses.

The good news is that intake line water damage is category 1, which means it contains relatively few biological contaminants.

Washing Machine Drainage Issues Can Cause Flooding

If your sewer backs up, if there’s a clog in the drainage pipe, or if your drain pipe simply isn’t lined up right, your washing machine’s drainage system is going to cause at least some water damage.

The most crucial issue is to avoid a sewer line clog. If your sewer backs up, you could be faced with category 3 water damage, which is filled with contaminants that can pose serious health risks. Be extremely careful when running your washing machine if your home’s sewer line has a history of backing up, or if you’ve recently experienced a storm.

Internal Leaks are Also a Common Cause of Washing Machine Water Damage

A washing machine doesn’t have to be old, poorly installed, or poorly built to cause internal leakage. Simply overloading your washing machine on a regular basis can be all it takes to cause cracks and loosen valves, bushings, and gaskets. It may take a little more time and water to run more, smaller loads, but it’s worth it to keep your washing machine from shaking itself apart.

Washing machine internal leaks are considered category 2 water damage, since exposure to water that contacts detergent and machine parts could cause health complications.

When Does Your Washing Machine Leak?

If the leak is constant, you almost certainly have a supply hose issue. If the leak happens during the wash cycle but before the spin cycle, it’s most likely an internal leak. If you see water on the floor during the spin cycle, or immediately after the machine shuts off, then it’s most likely a drainage issue.

Preventing Water Damage from your Washing Machine

The most effective ways of preventing damage from your washing machine are to:

  • Replace the washing machine intake hose every 5 years
  • Check your sewer line after a storm, before running your washing machine
  • Don’t overload your washing machine
  • Have your machine professionally installed to avoid water line pinches and drainage issues
  • Shut off the intake valve behind your machine at the first sign of trouble
  • If you can’t access the intake valve, know how to shut off your home’s water main

Is Washing Machine Water Damage Covered by Insurance?

The good news is that your average homeowner’s insurance policy will absolutely cover water damage caused by your washing machine. The bad news is that the damage to your appliance will most likely not be covered, which is why it’s best to purchase a washing machine from a manufacturer with a long parts and labor warranty. While shopping around, keep in mind that almost 80% of all washing machine related water damage claims involved units less than 11 years old.

Can SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County Repair Water Damage Caused by my Washing Machine?

Absolutely. Our restoration team can cover any kind of water, including all category 1, 2, and 3 water damage from washing machines.

Call us today to speak to a Mitigation Specialist. 502.241.6861

5 Things You Need To Know Before Calling A Plumber

11/10/2017 (Permalink)

Plumbing is an important part of the home. Your pipes and other plumbing systems must be well-built, developed and maintained. However, problems may still arise even if you take good care of your plumbing. You may not be prepared for such emergency situations. If problems like this arise, what automatically comes to mind is to call a local plumber. But before you do that, you must make sure first if you really need a plumber or another specialist.

So here are five things you need to know and consider before calling a plumber.

  1. Check if the plumber is licensed and reliable. A license alone is not enough. You also need to look into the experience and reputation of the plumber. You can do this by taking some time to read reviews. But don’t base your decision on the reviews alone. Just use this to have a quick background regarding the plumber’s reputation and skills.
  2. Get free estimates. This will help you get an idea of how much money you should prepare. However, you must keep in mind that affordability does not mean bad quality. Don’t equate quality with the price of the plumbing work. But don’t expect that the best plumber will be the cheapest.
  3. The plumber must not only be experienced and skilled; he or she must also be trustworthy. See to it that you entrust your home to a professional whom you can trust and count on. Let your instinct dictate you on this. And again, read some reviews.
  4. Check if the plumber offers workmanship warranty. Is he willing to fix any wrongs in case something comes up due to his performance? Is he reputable when it comes to installation work? Ask yourself questions so you can ask the potential plumber too.
  5. This is the most important. Ask yourself if you really need a plumber. Is the work needed fit for a plumber or would another specialist be more appropriate? Remember that there are things that plumbers can’t do. Assess the situation before you call a plumber. Chances are, you might not need a plumber after all, but a restoration specialist.

These are the kinds of things a restoration specialist can do:

There is a water damage restoration team who will assess the damage to your home. They will check if there is serious water damage due to flooding, burst pipes or other issues. So if the supposed “plumbing” problems have made your carpets, furniture and other valuables a mess, you don’t need a plumber, but a restoration specialist.

The restoration team will remove the water from your home and dry all your things to try and salvage your possessions. This means that they can solve both your plumbing and drying issues. Restoration specialists understand the many types of water damage. They can solve your plumbing and drying situations.

The next time you encounter a “plumbing” issue, ask yourself first the five things mentioned in the article before calling a plumber. Remember what plumbers can’t do that restoration specialists can handle. If you decide to call a restoration team, don’t hesitate to contact us here at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County. We also proudly serve the counties of Henry/Trimble and Spencer. 502.241.6861

Tis The Season For Frozen Pipes

11/9/2017 (Permalink)

Tis The Season For Frozen Pipes!

Along with the beauty that winter brings, our homes and buildings can suffer immensely from the icy impact it was on water lines. Frozen pipes turn into broken pipes and broken pipes turn into floods. All around, winter is a heavy season for water damage emergencies and the best thing you can do to help protect your home is take preventative measures that will minimize the amount of water damage that could happen. You are going to want to start by winterizing outside faucets, hoses, and other water fixtures.  Don’t lose out on the fun of the holiday season by having to spend a ton of money and time on water damage repairs – take these 4 simple steps and enjoy the season:

  • REMOVE CONNECTIONS – Just because it is sunny during the day does not mean that the area is not going to freeze overnight. Connections to hose bibs can trap water and cause different types of fixtures to freeze and break. Make sure hoses and splitters are removed from the spigot. Many water damage occurrences come from broken and frozen pipes. Take this one easy step and you could save your home from major flooding.  
  • INSPECT EVERYTHING – Don’t assume that because there were no major water emergencies during the last few months that there isn’t any leaks or drips now. You will want to do a thorough inspection for leaks in all of the hose bibs and other water fixtures. Even slow drips can cause blockage and a freeze in pipes and fixtures when temperatures drop. Frozen pipes may not become apparent until next season, but you can definitely limit the risk of experiencing frozen and broken pipes by taking precaution now. ?If you find any leaks or drips, contact a professional that can help you repair the problem before it turns into a bigger problem.
  • ELIMINATE STANDING WATER – Draining your pipes and hoses is a VERY important part of preventing water damage from frozen pipes and seasonal broken pipes. Even though there are hose bibs that are freeze-proof, it’s not a bad idea to still shut off the water line (if you can) and draining the water out. Not everyone will have the option of cutting the water supply to the hose bib, then you will want to use extra insulation. 
  • COVER AND PROTECT – These steps have been easy enough so far. The next thing you want to do is to protect your outdoor faucets by covering them with insulation. There are hose bib covers that you can install on each fixture. Be sure to cover your frost free hose bibs for extra protection. Even though frost-free hose bibs are resistant to freezing, they are not completely resistant to frosting over during  winter. They are convenient and easy to install, fitting right over the top of your faucets. The insulation is thick and great at reducing the temperatures that can affect the valves.     

In the unfortunate event of a water damage, SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County highly trained team is available for you 24 Hours a day and 7 days a week! We are passionate about what we do and helping people during a time of need and easing the stress of the situation is important to us… no matter the time of day! 

Water Damage In Your Home Or Business? Contact SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County to speak to a Mitigation specialist today. 502.241.6861

10 Signs Your Home Has A Slab Leak

11/7/2017 (Permalink)

A slab leak is one of the biggest headaches any homeowner can experience. Not only are they costly and inconvenient to repair, they can be dangerous if left unresolved. By keeping your eye out for these 10 signs of a slab leak, you can catch this issue before it escalates into a major problem.

What is a Slab Leak?

Every house is built on top of a foundation, which is usually made of concrete and steel. This foundation, also called a ‘slab’, bears the weight of the house and provides the entire structure stability. Water pipes which provide water to the home are usually located below the slab.

A slab leak occurs when one or more of the pipes below the foundation leak. This is a serious plumbing emergency that leads to short and long-term problems.

Common causes of slab leaks include:

  • Shifting ground: Houses naturally settle over time. In some case, the weight of the house can lead to changes in how the ground is situated, leading to pipe leaks. 
  • Improperly wrapped pipes:Pipes beneath the foundation are wrapped in order to prevent friction between the metal of the pipes and the concrete slab. Sometimes, pipes are not wrapped well, slowly leading to worn spots and leaks.
  • Electrolysis: Water pipes that are made of copper can be vulnerable to electrolysis, a natural chemical reaction that occurs when copper reacts with minerals in certain types of soil.

10 Signs of a Slab Leak

Now that you know why slab leaks are significant and how they’re caused, let’s look at the top 10 signs of a slab leak.

  1. Cracks in the walls have formed.
  2. Cracks in the floors have formed.
  3. You have noticed a significant increase to the water bill even though you haven’t changed your habits
  4. The carpet on the bottommost floor is wet to the touch. In basements, you may notice a wet spot on concrete or warped flooring.
  5. Tubs, toilets, showers, or sinks have experienced a stoppage or blockage.
  6. You notice hot spots on the floor or in the yard. These are, as the name suggests, areas on the ground which are warm to the touch and indicate a leaking hot water pipe.
  7. Mold and mildew forms on the walls without an apparent cause.
  8. A strange odor that cannot be traced is present.
  9. You’ve noticed a significant decrease in normal water pressure.
  10. Your water meter dial is moving even after you have made sure that no sources of water, such as sinks, washing machines, toilets, or showers, are running.

Why are Slab Leaks Dangerous?

Slab leaks are dangerous for several reasons. Getting the leak repaired as soon as possible can help avoid long-term issues.

  • Water leaks lead to mold and mildew growth. Mold and mildew doesn’t usually stay relegated to one area; spores spread and take hold in other parts of the house. 
  • Water erosion can lead to a weakened foundation, which in turn can cause structural problems in the home.
  • Water erosion can also lead to the foundation itself shifting. This is a very serious problem that can lead to collapse.

Slab leaks can cause damage to a home significant enough to make a home unsafe and unlivable until the issues have been repaired.

What to Do if You Have a Slab Leak

A slab leak is a plumbing emergency, so it’s important to act quickly if you notice any of the 10 signs of a slab leak as listed above.

First, shut off the water to your home. This will help prevent further damage to the home’s foundation. Then, call SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County. 502.241.6861

Water causes damage within minutes of exposure. That’s why our emergency line is open 24/7 so we can answer your call for those unexpected late-night leaks. Don’t let a slab leak ruin your home. Call us!

Your Home Appliances That Can Lead To Water Damage

11/3/2017 (Permalink)

Even new appliances can leak or cause flooding, learn how, and how to prevent it.

We all rely on our appliances to help with the daily routine.  More often than not, those convenient appliances run water through them, which means they have the potential to cause a water extraction emergency if they fail.  If your Seattle property has flooding, our water damage restoration technicians are standing by to help you 24/7 if your appliance fails.  Here are the top 5 appliances that can cause flood damage.

1. Refrigerators

Refrigerators produce a lot of excess moisture, particularly when they’re cooling items in warm environments. Every time the refrigerator door is opened, warm air passes over the condenser coil creating condensation. This condensation often pools as water on the bottom of your refrigerator.

Most refrigerators are outfitted with drain lines to siphon off this excess fluid. Drain lines become blocked with food, which prevents them from draining water effectively. Drain lines need to be cleaned regularly with chlorine bleach in order to keep them unplugged.

Another common culprit from refrigerators that can leak is the water supply line that feeds your ice machine.  Should this come unattached, you could be looking at a massive amount of standing water when you get home!  Its always a good idea to periodically pull the fridge away from the wall to check beneath.  There is a chance there could be some flood, wall, or hardwood floor damage that you haven't noticed.

2. Dishwashers

When a dishwasher overflows, often the cause is simply that someone put too much detergent, or the wrong type of detergent, into the dispenser.

In other instances, the malfunction may be due to a faulty float switch assembly or a strainer clogged with food and detergent debris. Float switches are relatively easy to replace, and strainers can be removed and washed in your kitchen sink with a mild detergent and a stiff bristle brush.  If you know for a fact that the leak and resulting flood damage is not related to the float switch or the strainer, then the likely culprit is one of the appliance’s many plumbing connections. The leak could be in the metal pipe fittings that connect the dishwasher to the main water supply, or in the flexible hosing that discharges used water into a drain underneath the sink.

3. Washing Machines

Washing machine leaks can be dramatic. Fortunately, they are easy to fix in most cases. Before you take out your screwdriver, however, make sure that the water on the floor isn’t due to a clogged floor drain.

The six most common sites for washer leaks are the inlet connections, the hose connections, the center post gaskets, the outer tub sea, the air dome seal and the pump. Refer to your owner’s manual for the exact location of these things on your model. Unplug your washing machine, turn off the water main and start troubleshooting these fixtures one at a time.

4. Water Heaters

When water accumulates around the base of a gas water heater, the leak is usually due either to a malfunctioning temperature and pressure relief valve, a leaky plumbing connection, or corrosion in the water tank itself.

Test the T&P valve by flushing water through it to clear any accumulated residue or debris. If the water tank is the culprit, then the entire water heater will need to be replaced.  Like any household appliance, the key to preventing a malfunction is proper, timely maintenance.  With water heaters, it’s best to have them maintained annually by a licensed and certified plumber!

5. Toilets

Overflowing toilets are due either to a clogged drain or a malfunctioning float that allows too much water into the tank. If plunging doesn’t clear the drainage pipe, then the blockage may lay in the pipes outside the house. Time to call in a professional plumber!

If you experience flood damage and need water damage restoration and water extraction services, call the professionals at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County 502.241.6861

Refrigerators and Water Damage

10/30/2017 (Permalink)

Water damage is a scary thing, especially since often times we don’t even know that there is water damage happening until long after the fact. Take, for example, water damage caused by a leaky refrigerator. Because the fridge blocks your view of the wall and floor behind the unit, you won’t notice water damage is occurring unless the leak creates a visible puddle.

What can we do about refrigerator water damage? We’ll walk you through what to expect when facing water damage caused by your fridge, how to repair it, and whether or not insurance will cover the costs.

How Long Before My Fridge Causes Water Damage?

Refrigerator water damage doesn’t always happen suddenly. Often times what ends up happening is the plastic water line behind the refrigerator will crack or weaken, causing a slow leak. Over the years, this leak drips water down to the floor and wall beneath the fridge, causing slow but progressive refrigerator water damage.

Other common causes of fridge water damage are ice maker leaks and condensation. Unfortunately, even just a little bit of added moisture from condensation buildup can spell disaster for your walls and floors. That’s the scary thing about water damage – it’s silent and happens over long periods of time.

How to Repair Water Damage from a Refrigerator

The repairs will depend highly on the extent of the water damages. If the water has only recently been there, chances are that you can mop it up and air out the surfaces. Once dry, flooring should return to normal. You’ll want to make sure that the walls are adequately dried as well, since this will prevent mold growth.

If your fridge has caused water damages over a long period of time, however, you’ll likely need to have the flooring and drywall completely ripped out and replaced. This is where things get costly.Because mold is also a serious possibility, we recommend that you leave the job of assessing and repairing the damages to a professional. 

Preventing Fridge Water Damage

One clear way to prevent fridge water damage is to regularly check and maintain your fridge. First, try to clear away any dust and debris from behind the unit, then check for hard water buildup in the water line. You might even want to consider upgrading the plastic water lines to a braided steel supply line.

We also recommend purchasing a battery operated water alarm. This water alarm can be placed behind the refrigerator, out of sight. While you’re at it, you can place one beneath your kitchen sink and behind the dishwasher, too. If the alarm comes into contact with water, it will let off an alarm. This will help prevent water from sitting unseen for too long, which causes permanent water damages.

Will Insurance Cover Refrigerator Water Damage?

Unfortunately, slow leaks (like ones caused by a toilet, ice maker, freezer, or fridge) are NOT covered by a typical homeowner’s insurance policy. Your insurance will usually cover things like damage caused by a “sudden and accidental” leak or other malfunctions, and not water damages that are determined to be due to negligence. For instance, water damages caused by a burst pipe would likely be covered – but repairing the pipe itself would not be. Your best bet when it comes to refrigerator water damage is to use the preventative tips above, and to regularly check and maintain your fridge.

Water Damage due to a leaky Fridge? Contact SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County today to speak to a Mitigation Specialist. We also proudly serve the counties of Henry, Spencer, and Trimble. 

502.241.6861

Preventing Water Damage In Your Garage

10/19/2017 (Permalink)

The interior of a person’s home is not the only place that is vulnerable to water damage. Garages, for example, often sustain just as much, if not more damage than a homeowner’s basement, living room, or kitchen. In fact, many homeowners use their garages for storing boxes of personal items and family heirlooms that would be difficult, if not impossible to replace. To ensure that your home, including your garage, sustains as little damage as possible in the event of a flood or leak, please contact an experienced water damage repair restoration contractor who can mitigate the damage and immediately begin the restoration process.

Preventive Tips

It is in a homeowner’s best interest to take certain steps to avoid water damage to their home and property. For instance, to prevent your garage from flooding, you may want to consider:

  • Placing weatherstripping, such as self-adhesive tape or rubber stripping, around your garage door to help maintain the temperature in your garage and prevent water from seeping under the door. Weatherstripping needs to be replaced regularly, so make sure to check yours for cracks or other signs of deterioration.
  • Checking for foundational cracks or other evidence of damage. Even minor cracks can allow water to seep into a garage and from the garage into the home itself. If you find any cracks, be sure to seal them with a vinyl concrete patch or waterproof paint. Large problems will need to be fixed by a professional.
  • Improving drainage in the area around your home by installing drains in front of your garage or along the driveway. This can be instrumental in transporting water away from your foundation.
  • Placing sandbags and other flood barriers around your property. These barriers expand when they come into contact with water and can help low-level flooding from spreading into your garage and home.

In some cases, no amount of preventive measures can save a garage from being flooded. In these cases, it may be in your best interest to install a flood vent, which will allow flood-water to flow through the garage itself. While this will help protect the interior of your home, it will also allow the garage to flood, which can result in a significant amount of damage. If you want to take this route, be sure to remove any important and valuable items from your garage and contact a professional who can assess and repair the damage.

Water damage can have devastating consequences for homeowners who may have to replace all of their possessions. However, the earlier a person addresses a flood by seeking professional aid, the less damage his or her property is likely to suffer. To speak with a member of our dedicated restoration team, please contact SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby at 502.241.6861. You can also reach us by sending us your contact information and a brief message. We realize that disasters can occur at any time and so make ourselves available to you 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Avoiding Plumbing Nightmares In Your Kentucky Business

10/18/2017 (Permalink)

Avoiding Plumbing Nightmares in Your Oldham/Shelby County Business

Stuff happens, right? Just like we have plumbing and water-related mishaps at home, they can happen at work. And, with the volume of people inside our businesses every day – be it, employees or customers – it’s probably even more likely to suffer a mishap at the office than at home. The truth is, most people tend to be more cautious about things at home than at work. For example, if a toilet stops flushing at work, sometimes people feel embarrassed and leave it – not telling anyone until it’s overflowing and water is rushing into the hallway.

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County has seen first hand how a little maintenance can go a long way.

  1. Overall Building Maintenance

Maintaining your building seems like a no-brainer, but when business is bustling, it sometimes drops down on the priority list. If you see potential signs of a problem – like a roof leak or cracked window seal, don’t wait to have them addressed. The longer you wait to have a water leak problem fixed, the more damage the water will cause. So keep a close eye on your building as a whole, and take notes of any problems you see. If you aren’t sure there is a problem, give us a call and we can use the latest technology to “see” inside walls and hidden spaces to see if there may be a problem within!

  1. Bathroom Maintenance

This may seem simple, but if you have a business with a lot of employees – or a bathroom used by many, many customers, it is very important to check those bathrooms often! This will help you catch a problem before it gets too out of hand – like a clogged and overflowing toilet, for example. Better to catch it while it’s still contained within the bathroom than discover it once it’s seeped its way into the hallway carpet.

Along these lines, do basic routine checks of bathroom fixtures too. This includes looking into the toilet tank to make sure the flapper is working properly, checking that toilets flush correctly, and looking for any signs of leaks around faucets. It is also wise to periodically make sure the wax ring at the bottom of the tank is intact, as well as the caulk seal around the base of the toilet.

  1. Kitchen Maintenance

Isn’t this a cause of grief for many companies? There’s always that one co-worker who leaves their dirty dishes in the sink, rotting food in the fridge, and dirty coffee cup on the counter after refusing to brew a new pot. Don’t you wonder what their house must look like?

Anyway, we digress. Just like keeping the bathroom clean and tidy will help prevent a water issue there, so will keeping the kitchen in tip-top shape.

For starters, make sure the appliances are working properly – especially the fridge and ice maker. Also, don’t let the pipes beneath the sink become too crowded out by other things! Make sure plumbing is in good working order, with zero leaks no matter how slow.

If there is a washing machine, be sure to check the hoses for any signs of deterioration, and replace as needed.

And one last note here. Yes, this probably seems like common sense.. however, if something does go awry, make sure you know where the main water shutoff is to your business so you can kill the problem at the source as quickly as possible. 

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County can create an Emergency Ready Profile for your business. Our expert team will meet with you to gather vital information in the event of an emergency. We will locate your shut off's and tag so that each employee can locate them quickly. This profile is FREE to your business and only takes a small amount of time to complete. We proudly service the following counties: Oldham, Shelby, Henry, Trimble, Spencer.  Protect your investment , call to set up your Emergency Ready Profile today. 502.241.6861

Water Damage From Dishwashers: How, Why and What's Next?

10/16/2017 (Permalink)

Are you one of the unfortunate homeowners dealing with dishwasher water damage? It’s a scene that has played out in countless movies, usually in a comedic fashion. Kid puts regular soap in dishwasher, dishwasher explodes with bubbles, and we all have a good laugh at their expense. But when you’re actually dealing with water leaks from your dishwasher, you need to know how quickly water damages can occur, why they happen, and what to do about them.

How long before dishwasher water damage occurs?

Dishwasher water damage can occur within just a couple of hours. You get home, turn on the dishwasher, walk away and watch tv for awhile, or run a few errands, only to come home and find a pool of water on the kitchen floor. The first reaction should be to soak up as much of the water as you can, because the longer it sits there, the more likely it will cause permanent damage.

Some flooring materials are more susceptible to dishwasher water damage than others, such as wood or bamboo. Wood will absorb water quickly, causing your flooring to warp and crack. Make sure to effectively dry out the area ASAP so you can avoid as much damage as possible.

Dishwasher water damage and what to expect

If you’ve never experienced dishwasher leaks or water damage before, you might not even know what you’re in for. Here’s what to expect when you’re dealing with water damage from dishwashers, including the common causes of leaks as well as what elements of your kitchen are most vulnerable after a leak.

Common causes of dishwasher leaks include:

  • Worn gaskets
  • Dishwasher not level
  • Wrong dishwashing soap used
  • Broken door
  • Defective dishwasher tub

Your dishwasher leak can cause water damage in a variety of ways to a variety of different elements of your kitchen. The below are all susceptible to damage after a dishwasher leak:

  • Tile
  • Wood
  • Laminate
  • Electrical wiring
  • Drywall
  • Wallpaper
  • Paint

Is it covered by insurance?

The answer to this question depends on whether or not your insurer deems the cause of the dishwasher leak to be  from neglect or sudden malfunction. If the dishwasher is new, has shown no previous signs of wear and tear, and you report the leak and damage in a timely manner, your insurer could very well cover the damages caused by the leak.

If your dishwasher is old, shows signs of neglect, and has caused you problems in the past, your insurer will likely rule that the water damage is due to negligence on your part, in which case none of the dishwasher water damage will be covered.

Make sure to also read your dishwasher’s warranty and see whether or not a newer dishwasher is covered (and the resulting damages caused by the dishwasher leak)

How to repair dishwasher water damages

The moment you notice your dishwasher is or has leaked, make sure to first turn off the dishwasher. Grab a towel or mop and soak up any visible water on your floor. This might mean pulling the unit out from under the counter so you can get any water that has pooled beneath the dishwasher itself.

Next, you need to identify the cause of the leak. Was the door slightly ajar? Does the latch not always work? Are the gaskets wearing out? Some problems you can fix yourself, but if you want to be extra confident in the repairs, call a specialist to come out and inspect and repair the unit.

Water Damage as a result of a Dishwasher leak?

Contact the professionals at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby/Trimble/Spencer/Henry today to speak to a Mitigation Specialist. 502.241.6861

Your Home's Saffety: The Top Causes Of Indoor Floods

10/6/2017 (Permalink)

YOUR HOME’S SAFETY: THE TOP CAUSES OF INDOOR FLOODS As a homeowner, one of the most beneficial things you can do is learn about the causes of the different disasters that could possibly impact you. While scary to think about, the benefit of doing so is the fact that you could potentially prevent damage in the event of a disaster. Floods, in particular, are important to work to avoid, as they can be devastating to your home’s interior, exterior, and the belongings you own.

To educate yourself, take a look at the top causes of indoor floods below. 

1. Unsecured or Damaged Roofing If your roof isn’t strong and healthy, a bad storm or even light wind could take it down. This could quickly lead to excess water being trapped in just about every room of your home. Even if bad weather isn’t imminent, having your roof repaired or even replaced is a great way to enhance security and prevent flooding. 

2. Broken Pipes When a pipe ruptures from old age or extreme temperatures, it can release thousands of gallons of water into your home. It’s for this reason that it’s so important to have your pipes regularly inspected by a professional. 

3. Improper Installation While installing your own dishwasher, fridge, washer, or any other appliance that uses water may seem easy, it’s not always easy to do it properly. Improper installation of pipes can mean a flood in your home that ruins the floors and walls. 

4. Extreme Weather Although making sure your home is in good shape is a great way to help minimize damage from extreme weather, it’s not always 100% foolproof. If there’s bad damage on the way and your home is impacted by flood damage, have restoration work done as soon as possible. By preparing to restore the damage right away, you may be able to prevent the damage from getting worse. 

5. Water Buildup For those who have basements or crawl spaces in their KY homes, the risk of water buildup is increased. To prevent this, take time to have an inspection done at least a couple of times per year. What Should You Do If a Flood Occurs? Indoor flooding is never 100% preventable with the unpredictability of weather and chance of bad luck.

For these reasons, it’s crucial to know who to call in the event that something like this happens. In most situations, contacting Water Damage and Flood professionals such as ours at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby/Trimble/Henry is key. We know that timing is everything, which is why we rush to you right away.

Equipped with experience and the right tools, we can work to restore your home so you can recover from the flood quickly and effectively Call SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby/ Trimble/Spencer/Henry today to speak to a Mitigation Specialist. 502.241.6861

10 Signs Of A Slab Leak

10/4/2017 (Permalink)

10 Signs Of A Slab Leak

A slab leak is one of the biggest headaches any homeowner can experience. Not only are they costly and inconvenient to repair, they can be dangerous if left unresolved. By keeping your eye out for these 10 signs of a slab leak, you can catch this issue before it escalates into a major problem.

What is a Slab Leak?

Every house is built on top of a foundation, which is usually made of concrete and steel. This foundation, also called a ‘slab’, bears the weight of the house and provides the entire structure stability. Water pipes which provide water to the home are usually located below the slab.

A slab leak occurs when one or more of the pipes below the foundation leak. This is a serious plumbing emergency that leads to short and long-term problems.

Common causes of slab leaks include:

  • Shifting ground: Houses naturally settle over time. In some case, the weight of the house can lead to changes in how the ground is situated, leading to pipe leaks. 
  • Improperly wrapped pipes:Pipes beneath the foundation are wrapped in order to prevent friction between the metal of the pipes and the concrete slab. Sometimes, pipes are not wrapped well, slowly leading to worn spots and leaks.
  • Electrolysis: Water pipes that are made of copper can be vulnerable to electrolysis, a natural chemical reaction that occurs when copper reacts with minerals in certain types of soil.

10 Signs of a Slab Leak

Now that you know why slab leaks are significant and how they’re caused, let’s look at the top 10 signs of a slab leak.

  1. Cracks in the walls have formed.
  2. Cracks in the floors have formed.
  3. You have noticed a significant increase to the water bill even though you haven’t changed your habits
  4. The carpet on the bottom floor is wet to the touch. In basements, you may notice a wet spot on concrete or warped flooring.
  5. Tubs, toilets, showers, or sinks have experienced a stoppage or blockage.
  6. You notice hot spots on the floor or in the yard. These are, as the name suggests, areas on the ground which are warm to the touch and indicate a leaking hot water pipe.
  7. Mold and mildew forms on the walls without an apparent cause.
  8. A strange odor that cannot be traced is present.
  9. You’ve noticed a significant decrease in normal water pressure.
  10. Your water meter dial is moving even after you have made sure that no sources of water, such as sinks, washing machines, toilets, or showers, are running.

Why are Slab Leaks Dangerous?

Slab leaks are dangerous for several reasons. Getting the leak repaired as soon as possible can help avoid long-term issues.

  • Water leaks lead to mold and mildew growth. Mold and mildew doesn’t usually stay relegated to one area; spores spread and take hold in other parts of the house. 
  • Water erosion can lead to a weakened foundation, which in turn can cause structural problems in the home.
  • Water erosion can also lead to the foundation itself shifting. This is a very serious problem that can lead to collapse.

Slab leaks can cause damage to a home significant enough to make a home unsafe and unlivable until the issues have been repaired.

What to Do if You Have a Slab Leak

A slab leak is a plumbing emergency, so it’s important to act quickly if you notice any of the 10 signs of a slab leak as listed above.

First, shut off the water to your home. This will help prevent further damage to the home’s foundation. 

Water causes damage within minutes of exposure. Don’t let a slab leak ruin your home. Call SERVPRO today to speak to a Mitigation Specialist. 502.241.6861

 

So You Woke Up To A Wet Basement?

10/2/2017 (Permalink)

Surprise! You Have a Wet Basement.

 It is very possible to move into a home and not realize that it has a wet basement. The signs of Water Damage are often subtle and some home sellers purposely hide the evidence of a damp or wet basement. Even home inspectors have been known to miss the signs of a leaky basement, especially during times of drought or sporadic rainfall. 

In a February 2017 survey of U.S. homeowners and renters, 55% said they’ve lived in a home with a wet basement — of that group, 71% were not aware they were moving into a home with a wet basement.

Way Too Much Water

As the global temperature continues to rise, more and more cases of sudden downpours and extreme rainfall are expected. Reports of severe weather outbreaks are becoming much more common across the United States.

Heavy rainfalls and sudden downpours often overwhelm sump pumps. Cracks in the walls or foundation allow the water to seep in. But even a seemingly “watertight” home can have problems when the water that has seeped into the ground in the area surrounding the home becomes saturated. The pressure of this water on the concrete walls and floors of the basement become too much, and the water begins to seep into the basement through these barriers.

In addition, water that gets into the basement or any area of a home can often be traced back to clogged gutters.

Once water gets in, it’s a problem. If not properly addressed, it becomes a much bigger and much more expensive problem.

A Little Water Goes a Long Way

 A flooded basement, wet, squishy carpeting, and water marks on walls and ceilings are hard to overlook. But water has a way of discreetly finding its way into the tiniest cracks and oftentimes, goes completely unnoticed. Small leaks also tend to be inconspicuous. These small but steady water intrusions can cause serious damage. Homeowners should be on the lookout for signs of water seepage and slow leaks:

  • Musty odor in certain areas of your home
  • Peeling paint or discoloration
  • Wood floors that are cupping
  • Spike in your water bill

What’s the Big Deal?

 So there are a few areas of damp carpet. And some sections of drywall are dark with water marks. They’ll dry, right? Not likely. In fact, even with the help of fans and a dehumidifier, carpets, furniture, walls…anything that’s been exposed to water is not going to dry quickly and efficiently enough to prevent the scourge of mold.

The EPA advises that homeowners who choose to hire a contractor to remove evidence of mold should “make sure the contractor has experience cleaning up mold.”

Water Damage or Mold In Your Home Or Business? Contact the professionals at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby/Trimble/Henry/Spencer today to speak to a Mitigation or Remediation specialists. 502.241.6861

Tips for Drying Books or Paper Collections Damaged by Water

9/25/2017 (Permalink)

Tips for Drying Books or Paper Collections Damaged by Water. This article will provide tips for mitigating damage by water to maps, documents, posters, letters, stamps and other paper collections. Following these tips won’t guarantee recovery of all items, but will should help you minimize the damage. Obviously the sooner you can begin the drying process the better. 

Note: Safety First!

Remember the importance of wearing the proper coverings for your eyes, arms and hands, especially when dealing with damaged items due to flooding where waters could have been contaminated. Always be sure the environment you are working in is safe before trying to dry your collection. If there is any question about this be sure to call a certified damage restoration expert. If the collection has been removed from the environment, you may still be dealing with mold (see tips for handling mold below).

Some precautions you may want to consider are:

  • Safety glasses.
  • Disposable gloves.
  • Shirts with extended sleeves.
  • Masks (optional)

CAUTION: Mold can be extremely dangerous, depending on the type and extent of the growth. If dealing with mold, follow these recommendations carefully:

  • Use a respirator to protect the lungs.
  • Use a vacuum to suck dry mold spores away from you.
  • When finished, wash hands and dispose of gloves properly.
  • See a doctor if you feel any health effects from the handling of mold.
 Using a Respirator
If dealing with mold, keep in mind that some species of mold are toxic and should only be dealt with while wearing a respirator. You may want to consider an N-95 respirator. These can be purchased at many home improvement centers.  

Drying Methods to Employ for documents and other paper items:

  • Fans: Circulate the air with the use of fans. Avoid pointing the fan(s) in the same direction as the item(s) you’re trying to dry. You simply want to keep the air moving at a good rate in order to maximize the drying process.
  • Blotting: When removing excess water from your paper documents, remember to blot. Never attempt to wipe it dry. Do not blot over ink that has been hand written or if the paper is too delicate. When blotting, use a new sponge that is clean, paper (not newspaper) or very absorbent towels.
  • Screens: Window screen material can be found at any hardware store. You can also use the screens from your own windows if they’re clean and not rusty. Simply stack them in layers, using wooden blocks, pieces of board, cinder blocks or bricks to separate each section of screen. This will allow the air to circulate through, reaching the surface of both sides of the paper or item.
  • Absorbent Material: If you don’t have access to screens, you can dry your items on a hard surface, but first cover the surface with materials that absorb moisture. You will need to replace the absorbing material frequently as to ensure the best drying environment.
  • Paper Handling: CAUTION: Handle damp paper with great care as it will be heavy and weak, subject to tearing easily. It is important that it is supported by the work surface.

Drying Method to Employ for items in a frame:

  • First, flip the frame over, placing the glass down.
  • Second, pull off the backing and remove everything in the frame, except the item you’re trying to save. Then carefully lift the item out of the frame and place it where it can be air-dried.
  • CAUTION: Do not remove the item if it is stuck to the glass. This may cause irreversible damage. The item will have to be dried, lying on top of the glass. Once dried, if still adhering to the surface of the glass, it can be carefully and slowly lifted using a flat tool such as a plastic putty knife.

Drying Methods to Employ for Books:

  • Set books on their tops or bottoms and open them up like a fan. Avoid standing opened books on the side edges.
  • Choose the driest side to set the book on first, then as it dries, rotate it every couple of hours or so.
  • Wax paper works wonderfully well when placed in between the covers of the book and the pages next to them. Make sure the wax paper is slightly larger than the size of the cover itself. Replace often to ensure a more speedy drying of the book.
  • As the book dries, it will get to a point where it still feels cool, but is no longer damp. At this point, close the book, place it on a surface that’s solid and add a small weight to the top to keep the pages as flat as possible. Remember to check often, so mold doesn’t begin to grow between the book’s pages.

Dealing with Mold Growth on Your Collection

It is important to understand the difference between active mold and dormant mold when and how to handle each. Active mold appears slimy and often fuzzy as though hair is growing out of it. Dormant mold is no longer producing spores or spreading and is characterized by a dry powdery appearance.

  • If your item has active mold growing on it, do not try to wipe it clean or get rid of the mold in any way. Exposing the mold to sunlight and fresh air should speed up the drying process of the mold, making it safer to remove. CAUTION: This may lead to some damage from the sun, so only leave it exposed for short periods of time to avoid fading. If the item looks as though it will easily fade, find a place to dry the mold away from direct sunlight.
  • It’s always helpful to control the humidity inside the room where you’re attempting to dry your items. Try to keep it humidity levels below 50%. You may need to use a dehumidifier to bring it down to a safe percentage. Lowering your room temperature into the mid 60 degree range should help as well.
  • When the mold has changed from active to dormant, then you can safely remove the mold by placing the hose of a vacuum cleaner nearby as you brush the mold off with a soft brush. Remove the vacuum bag and dispose of it immediately and make sure you leave the brushes clean of the mold as well.
  • Most importantly, remember to follow the proper rules of safety discussed above when dealing with mold. Mold spores can cause a great deal of damage.

Should You Hire a Professional Conservator?

It’s extremely important that you weigh the importance of the items that have been damaged by water. Depending on the historic, sentimental or monetary value of your damaged items you may want to consider employing a professional conservator, who will have experience dealing with the restoration of water damaged collections. With a trained eye they will be able to assess what actions are best with each item as well as be expert in mitigating any mold issues.

Water Damage in Your Home or Business?

Contact SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby/Trimble/Spencer/Henry today to speak to a Mitigation Specialist today. 502.241.6867

Find A Certified Professional To Repair Water Damage

9/21/2017 (Permalink)

The following is provided by the IICRC. Please visit IICRC.org to learn more. 

Find A Certified Professional To Repair Water Damage:

It may be possible for a homeowner to repair minor water damage in their home, but when the problem begins to worsen or if it is widespread, professional help will be needed to fix the issue. In general, if a problem can be completely fixed without having to tear through a wall or dig out plumbing in the yard or basement, a homeowner might be able to resolve it without help. This includes small, isolated leaks. In many cases, though, it is not clear where the moisture is coming from and how extensive the problem is. Professionals certified through the Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) should be called in to deal with larger issues.

Why should a homeowner hire certified professionals to repair water damage?

The damage left behind in the wake of a flood, leaky pipes or a natural disaster can be extensive. The homeowner will likely only notice the damage to the surface, but a certified technician is trained to look beyond the surface. It doesn’t take long for a saturated area to pose a health risk, so dealing with the full extent of the issue is imperative.

How does the IICRC train technicians to repair water damage?

The IICRC has long been a leading training and certification agency for technicians in this field since the early 70s. To further this cause, the IICRC offers several classes aimed at expanding the knowledge of industry professionals.

The IICRC’s coursework will teach students how to handle a wide variety of work environments and how to avoid the most common hazards associated with the job. These risks commonly include wildlife, chemical and sewage contamination and electrical hazards. Students will learn how to use standard protective equipment and technology designed to locate the source of infiltration. Technicians will be introduced to the latest methods, cleaning solutions, disinfectants and equipment for cleaning up job sites and eliminating microbial threats.

The IICRC’s Applied Microbial Remediation Technician course (AMRT) and Applied Structural Drying technician course (ASD) will expand on these concepts. The AMRT will show students how to deal with the many strains of mold, bacteria and viruses they are likely to encounter while on the job. The ASD will demonstrate how to oversee the drying process properly, including how to accelerate it and how to adequately dry a variety of materials. Once complete, students will have the knowledge to assess and fix problems left behind by leaks, floods, plumbing problems and more.

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby technicians are IICRC certified. Contact us today to schedule an appointment. 502.241.6861

Water Damaged Carpet Cleaning

9/15/2017 (Permalink)

The unthinkable has happened and you do not know where to turn. A storm moved through your area during the night time hours and flooded your home, causing extensive water damage to your Oldham/Shelby home. You are going to need professional help in order to clean up the destruction left behind and move on with your life. It is time to take action against the worst the storm could create and call SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby/Trimble/Henry/Spencer for help and the right cost for your budget to deal with water damage to your home.

Each person that enters your home is professionally trained to handle the problems from the water damage due to the previous nights storms. They will check your carpets to see how much destruction has happened and if your carpet can be saved. If the carpets can be saved, you will be able to avoid the cost of replacement.

They will remove all furniture and property off the carpeted area of your home and use a high quality wet vacuum to remove as much water as possible. Once all the water has been removed, your carpet with be cleaned with a solution safe for humans and animals to prevent moisture bacteria build up. The carpet will be dried with fans or fresh air.

If you live in an area where humidity is a problem, fans will be used to dry all carpets. If you live in a low humidity area, your carpets can dry naturally for a fresh, clean smell.

If your carpets cannot be salvaged from water damage, then SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby will remove the damaged carpets and clean all surfaces before new carpeting is installed. The old carpeting and pads will be removed and disposed of in a safe manner.

Do not let one flood due to a storm ruin your day. You can call the professionals to handle the problems and make life easier. Take advantage of estimates for clean up, removal and replacement cost for insurance purposes. Return your life and property to normal with just one call.

Call SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby/Trimble/Henry/Spencer to speak to a Mitigation Specialist today. 502.241.6861
 

Do's And Don'ts after a Burst Plumbing Pipe

9/14/2017 (Permalink)

Do’s And Don’ts after a Burst Plumbing Pipe  The effects of a burst or frozen plumbing pipe can be devastating. The best solution is to enlist the help of a team of professionals who have the knowledge required to rectify the situation efficiently and promptly. But, before calling them, there are some do’s and don’ts that homeowners can follow to ensure that damage is minimized and that the cleanup operation goes as quickly as possible.

DO:

•  Turn off the source of water immediately.
•  Mop up excess water; this will prevent further damage and make the process of repairing a burst plumbing pipe a lot faster, as well as preventing secondary damage. Open all the windows to dry rooms out, and use a dehumidifier or fan to speed up the process.
•  Phone the home restoration/plumbing company – they will tell you about other things you can do before their arrival.


DON’T (under ANY circumstances):

•  Lift or remove carpeting.
•  Apply heat to affected areas as this could cause more damage.
•  Use detergent, bleach or other cleaning products on the affected areas.

At SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby, we are a team of restoration, cleaning and remodeling professionals who offer disaster repair & cleaning for residential and commercial properties. We guarantee fast emergency response and the latest technology. Please contact us for more information. 

Finding Invisible Water Damage-Thermal Imaging

9/8/2017 (Permalink)

Have you ever encountered a situation where you suspect there is something weird going on inside your wall or ceiling? Perhaps a leak within the structure or you suspect there is a cold draft coming in from somewhere but you just cant seem to pinpoint it?

Well with the use of the latest technology, we are now able to identify these problem areas and start seeing the invisible.

This is done through the use of thermal imaging, at one point this technology was very expensive and reserved only for military and government applications. However as this technology progresses it becomes more affordable to apply it to other new industries, in this case the property restoration industry.

For property restoration, some of the best uses of thermal imaging technology include:

  • Pin-point moisture intrusion such as leaks within walls and ceilings, avoiding the need to cutting costly inspection holes.
  • Identify cold and hot spots, finding areas of missing insulation which could lead to drafts and energy loss.
  • Identify maintenance issues or potential dangers such as electrical overheating of components.
  • Assess the efficiency of HVAC systems, finding any areas of air leaks.
  • Identify structural defects
  • Identify clogs in piping

Note: thermal imagining readings can be attained without damaging the property, no pins or probes are required therefore there will be no sign of damage to your property.

Also, thermal imaging will also work in areas of total darkness as it is operating on heat differentials it does not need any visible light to operate. This is specially handy when inspecting areas such as attics, crawlspaces, or there is simply no power/lighting available in the property.

When it comes down to it, having thermal imaging tools is a must for property restoration companies and it is no wonder why leading restoration companies have adopted this technology. The ability to inspect, identify, record, and report on property issues has made it a great business tool to better serve and inform clients.

Suspect Water Damage In Your Home Or Business? Contact SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby/Trimble/Shelby/Henry to speak to a Mitigation Specialist today. 502.241.6861

What Determines The Completion of Your Water Damage

9/7/2017 (Permalink)

How We Know the Water Cleanup Process is Complete

The Three Keys to a Successful Water Cleanup Project

Flood damage restoration experts know that every step in the water cleanup project is critical: the analysis, setup, drying, monitoring, and reevaluation. Reevaluation is the final step in the water remediation process, when the project leader determines if the affected areas are restored to their preloss state. This important final step is where the final decision is made, and the water damage is finally eliminated.

There are three major factors or criteria for determining whether or not the area is “dry” and the water contamination is no longer present. All three of these conditions must absolutely be met before a water damage professional will consider the water cleanup effort accomplished.

Water damaged areas must be returned to a preloss state in order for the water cleanup process to be completed.

Building Materials are at their Equilibrium Moisture Content

“Equilibrium moisture content” is the point at which the building material is no longer saturated, gaining, or losing any moisture, and is a function of both temperature and the humidity of the surrounding air.

Why is this so Important?

Ensuring the building materials are at their equilibrium moisture content is essential because once this point is reached, the water damaged area will no longer support the growth of mold or mildew.

Interior Ambient Room Conditions are Considered “Normal”

Ambient room conditions must be returned to a normal, stable, preloss state in order for the water damage reevaluation process to be completed. This is the primary goal of most water cleanup projects and the hope of any client: for things to be exactly as they were before the flooding event. Ambient room conditions are also a function of temperature and relative humidity, with 50% RH to 70 degrees Fahrenheit considered normal and common for the Kentucky area.

Why is this so Important?

Without normal and stable ambient room conditions, the affected area may not fully recover from the water damage, which can lead to the growth of fungal organisms and a hazardous environment.

Affected Areas can Achieve Stability without the Further Use of Drying Equipment

Before any drying equipment can be removed, it must be determined that the water damage must no longer poses a threat because the room is stabilized and able to reach equilibrium without the further aid of the equipment. This is also considered a “preloss state,” because the interior conditions are healthy and self-regulating, just like they were before the water cleanup project began.

Why is this so Important?

If the room cannot achieve stability on its own, the equipment must remain with continued support and monitoring, meaning the water cleanup process is not complete. If the equipment is removed prematurely, the room could undergo further damage trying to reach equilibrium.

Water Damage In Your Home Or Business? Contact SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby/Trimble/Henry/Spencer to speak to a Mitigation Specialist. 502.241.6861

10 Preventative Restoration Tips You Can Do At Home

9/6/2017 (Permalink)

10 Preventative Restoration Tips You Can Do at Home

Good restoration is about a lot more than making old keepsakes sparkle or fixing up a burned building.

At Professional Restoration, we believe proper restoration begins with prevention or simple tasks everyone can do around their home or business.

Preparation is a great first line of defense. Follow these easy restoration tips at home or the office:

  • Regularly service heating systems.

In addition to central heating systems, check gas and wood-burning fireplaces. Keep dust and other debris away from ignition sources.

  • Remove lint from the dryer after every use.

A clogged lint filter or trap can reduce the efficiency of your dryer and forces lint onto the heating coils. Keep your dryer free of lint and don’t run the dryer while you’re out of the house.

  • Check electrical outlets a few times a year.

If an electrical outlet is warm to the touch it’s dangerous and should be addressed immediately by a professional. Also, check outlet extenders or power strips for damaged or frayed cords. Avoid using outlet extenders when possible.

  • Don’t store cooking oils near the stove.

Grease fires can erupt quickly and spread rapidly if not properly handled. Do not pour water over a grease fire; instead, use a lid or baking soda to smother the flames. Call emergency services immediately in the event of a fire.

  • Check your green thumb.

Some plant species have extremely invasive roots that can damage sprinkler systems, underground pipes, and septic tanks. Plan before you plant to avoid this disaster.

  • Watch the water bill.

Your monthly water bill is a great way to gauge water use. Slow increases to your bill or a sudden jump may indicate a leak somewhere out of sight.

  • Keep rain gutters clear.

A clogged rain gutter can spell big trouble for your home or business. Clean out gutters seasonally to avoid leaks or floods.

  • Disconnect outdoor hoses (especially in the winter!)

Standing water inside a hose can travel backwards and freeze inside a pipe blocking water flow. If this happens, pipes can burst and damage walls, floors, or the foundation.

  • Have a main plan.

In the event of disaster, or if you decide to leave your home or office for an extended period of time, you and family members or colleges should know where the water main is and how to shut it off.

  • Let SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby clean up the big stuff.

Prevention is only half of your restoration preparation; the other half is knowing who to call when prevention fails or natural disaster occurs.

When property damage is too big to handle on your own, SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby/Trimble/Henry/Spencer is ready 24/7 to take your call. 502.241.6861

Emergency Water Removal: A Checklist For Quick Action

9/1/2017 (Permalink)

Emergency Water Removal: A Checklist for Quick ActionWhen water damage strikes, it’s important to act fast and to contact a professional company to help with restoration and repairs. At SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby/Trimble/Henry/Spencer, we are experienced with emergency Water Removal and want to help you recover fast.

Water Damage Emergency Checklist

When facing a water damage emergency, use this handy checklist to stay calm and take quick action until help arrives.

  • Determine if it is safe to stay where you are: in water emergency situations, there can be a number of hazards including electricity.
  • Contact Water Damage Restoration of Austin so that we can send a team right away.
  • Watch out for slippery areas that could cause you to fall.
  • Begin mopping up excess water where possible.
  • Pick up wet books, newspapers, magazines, etc.
  • Pick up wet fabrics and start hanging them. Beware, wet fabric items are much heavier when wet!
  • Rescue easy to reach artwork, valuables, and personal items and put them in a safe, dry space.
  • Gather any loose items from the floor, so that they can dry and not add additional tripping hazards.
  • Do NOT use any electrical items while the house is still wet.
  • Do NOT attempt to use your household vacuum cleaner to remove water.
  • Stay calm, and wait for our technicians to arrive and help you with your water removal, inspection, and restoration plan.

Our team has years of experience helping homeowners recover after a flood. We know exactly how to proceed in order to ensure that you get the best possible results. Our goal is to remove water, save your property, and help you make repairs after the damages. We also want to ensure that you are left with a clean space free of lingering mold issues.

Water Damage In Your Home Or Business? Contact the professionals here at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby/Trimble/Henry/Spencer today to speak to a Mitigation Specialist. 502.241.6861

Top Down Water Damage Clean Up

8/29/2017 (Permalink)

Top Down Water Damage Clean up

The Easy Method for Simple Flood Damage Restoration

Top down or “in-place” water damage clean up is a method of drying your carpet in a quick and effective manner that will save you time and money. When the flood damage or water intrusion is not severe, we can dry your carpet without the use of the highly advanced techniques that are utilized for more work-intensive projects. In order to use our top down drying method, a few project criteria must be met.

  • The water damage must be caused by “clean” category 1 water. If the damage is caused by grey (non-potable) or black (toxic raw sewage) water, the top down method cannot be used.

  • The flood damage must be addressed within 24 hours of intrusion.

There are several other variables that must be factored into the final decision to use this in-place clean up method such as the subfloor, the type of carpeting, and the condition of the carpet pad. Here at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby/Trimble/Spencer, our technicians will be able to analyze the project conditions to determine if we can perform top down drying.

  

Top down or “in-place” water damage clean up can only be performed on flooring contaminated by category 1 “clean” water within 24 hours of intrusion.

  

The Benefits of Top Down Drying

To many homeowners, the most important advantage of in-place water damage clean up is cost reduction. Because we don’t have to use complicated techniques or advanced equipment, this project will be less expensive. In addition to the lowered cost, this process takes less time, and we can get your home back to working order quickly. Finally, since the water damage was identified in under 24 hours and we can complete the project in a shorter amount of time, there is a greater chance that the carpet and padding won’t have to be replaced.

The Process of In-Place Water Damage Clean up

  • Locate and eliminate the source of water intrusion

  • Extract at least 97% of the water in the carpet and padding with the use of drying equipment

  • Use anti-microbials and disinfectants when appropriate

  • Inspect where water possibly travelled beyond the affected area and dry where necessary

  • Properly install evaporation equipment and begin the monitoring process

  • Use a dehumidifier to lower the increased humidity caused by evaporation equipment

  • Clean all carpeting and return the home to its preloss state
Water Damage In Your Home Or Business? Call the professionals at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby/Trimble/Henry/Spencer at 502.241.6861

How Untreated Water Damage Will Lead To Structural Damage

8/28/2017 (Permalink)

How Untreated Water Damage Will Lead to Structural Damage

Water Damage Warps the Wood

Many people have heard about wood warping and the problems that this can cause. For those that don't understand, wood warping refers to a change in the shape of the wood due to the damage from water. While some people think that wood warping is merely an aesthetic issue, remember that wood is used in walls and roofs as well. If the wood warps, it is no longer straight and the alignment that was used to keep the walls and roof strong has been moved out of place. This can lead to support problems for the structure of the home.

Water Damage Can Degrade Metal

Water damage can cause the metallic fabrication in the home to rust. People depend on metal to carry air conditioning fluids, heat, and clean water through the plumbing system. Many people have also reinforced parts of their home with metal. Water reacts with the metal and can cause the metal to rust over. This damages the integrity of the surface and can contaminate drinking water or decrease the efficiency of a heating system. People should have water damage treated to preserve the integrity of their piping and fabrication.

These are only a couple of the ways that untreated water damage can have important impacts on the structure of a home. Treat water damage to prevent them from happening.

Water Damage In Your Home Or Business? Contact SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby/Trimble/Henry/Spencer today to speak to a Mitigation Specialist. 502.241.6861

When is time to Call A Plumber?

8/23/2017 (Permalink)

WHEN IS IT TIME TO CALL A PLUMBER? Whether you consider yourself a total do-it-yourself person or a complete rookie when it comes to home repairs, it’s important to know when it’s time to leave something to the professionals.

All too often, homeowners try to cut costs by trying to repair water issues themselves and end up causing more damage that can be twice as costly to repair in the end.

A good rule of thumb to work from is that if you can’t properly diagnose the source of the issue, it’s best not to try to fix it yourself, and to call a plumber instead.

Here are seven situations that should alert you that it’s time to call a plumber:

1. Bathtub, Sink, or Toilet That Won’t Drain

Most clogs will only worsen if they’re not dealt with immediately. Now there are ways that you can unclog a toilet without a plumber, but if over-the-counter drain cleaners, plungers, or drain snakes aren’t working, call a plumber immediately before the clog gets worse. Trying to repair the clog yourself, you may end up scratching the porcelain or damaging the pipes.

2. Dripping Faucet

While in most cases you may be able to easily tighten a leaky faucet, not all faucets are quick fixes. A small leak may not seem like a big deal, but a leaky faucet dripping at the rate of one drop per second can waste up to 3,000 gallons in one year—the equivalent of 174 showers. It’ll likely cost you much more to let the faucet leak than it would to call a plumber.

3. Poor/Inconsistent Water Pressure

Whether it’s poor water pressure from a single faucet, or a common issue across your entire home, it’s best to call a plumber if you’re having water pressure issues. While it may be as simple as cleaning out a single fixture or unclogging a pipe, there may be bigger issues with your water supply that need to be resolved.

4. Frozen Pipes

Trying to thaw frozen pipes on your own could result in cracked pipes or even worse, full bursts. To save yourself from a huge mess, call SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby/Trimble/Henry/Spencer.

5. Water Heater Issues

If your water isn’t getting hot enough or water temperature is inconsistent, it’s likely you have water heater issues that need to be looked at by a professional. If your water heater isn’t getting hot enough, it can become a cesspool for bacteria. And nobody likes sudden bursts of scalding water in the shower. Tinkering with a flammable, pressurized water heater on your own can be dangerous so leave it to the pros.

6. Home Renovation Projects

If you’re doing home renovations that involve plumbing in any way, it’s best to seek out the services of a plumber. They can ensure that all proper permits have been acquired and that all work is up to code.

7. Visible Leaks or Water Damage

If there are any signs of water damage in your home, including water stains or mold, call a plumber and a water restoration specialist immediately. Water damage in your home can cause mold, which can be hazardous.

For consultation about any water damage in your home, contact SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby/Trimble/Henry/Spencer today. 

 502.241.6861

Is Your Hot Water Heater Leaking?

8/22/2017 (Permalink)

Hot Water Heater Leak In Your Basement?
aking up is hard to do. You need to get out of your cozy bed, go wash up, get dressed and get some coffee in you before you start your day. Now think of getting out of bed, as hard as that is, walking slowly to the shower, opening the hot water, and waiting for it to run so you can hop in, and... nothing happens.

The Water stays cold as ice, you realize you can't hit the shower this morning, and you try to figure out what just happened. Could you have forgotten to turn on the water heater? Could it be broken? Time to check it out.

As you walk downstairs you hear a low trickling noise as if a faucet is open somewhere. You keep going, and as you approach the basement, you hear it louder - there is water running somewhere over there. The question is - where? As you reach the last step, you put your foot down and immediately realize you haven't even opened your eyes properly. You're standing in a big pond, which was once your basement. No hot shower today. What now then?

WHAT'S IMPORTANT TO DO WHEN YOU HAVE WATER IN YOUR BASEMENT?

First - close down the water source. Whether it's the water heater, a pipe or a water leaking in from a window, make sure no more water can get in. Close the water mains, shut down any valve leading to the affected area, and close the window if that was the source of the water.

 Second -  Take care of all that water. Water spreads fast and has the power to cause lots and lots of trouble over time. If you don't have a water drain in the basement, it's time to get emergency water extraction services provided by a professional water damage restoration company such as SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby/Trimble/Henry/Spencer.

THE MORE YOU WAIT, THE BIGGER THE DAMAGE

Water leaks and floods should be taken care of as fast as possible. The reason is that most homes aren't waterproof on the inside. Standing water will ruin your carpets, floors, furniture, and even get into drywall if given the opportunity. Moreover, the standing water becomes a  hazard after a while, even if they came from a clean source (also called Category 1 water damage). Another reason for you to hurry is mold and how fast mold starts to grow after your basement suffered a water damage.

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby/Trimble/Henry/Spencer offers a 24/7 response to all your water damage restoration needs, providing you a quick and thorough solution to your problem. We'll get your life back to normal in no time.

And the water heater story? That's one of our customers. Within 12 hours, the basement was water free. Within 48 hours, the basement was dry and tested for mold growth. Within 72 hours the basement was restored to its original state, including the carpets, the furniture, and a brand new water heater. Our customer enjoyed a hot shower the next morning!

So what caused the water heater to break? We may never know. We're not water heater experts, but that customer was very lucky to suffer only small damage from it, especially with electricity running.

Water Damage In Your Home or Business? Let the professionals at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby/Trimble/Henry/Spencer come to your aide. 502.241.6861

Top 5 Ways To Know You Have Water Damage

8/21/2017 (Permalink)

Top 5 Ways To Know If You Have Water Damage

Water damage is the product of an in-home flood or a leak. Fortunately, there are easy ways to determine if you have water damage.

You Have Mold

Mold loves water. If you see mold anywhere around your home, then it’s likely you have water damage. If you notice mold on your wall, in a crevice in your basement, or on your vinyl siding, then you should contact a professional immediately.

You Smell Mildew

Mildew is the musky smell that’s associated with mold. It’s a stench that’s undeniable. Unfortunately, if you smell mildew in parts of your home, it could be due to the fact that you have water damage.

You See Warped Wood

If you are like many homeowners who choose to install hardwood flooring, then warped wood may be a sign that you have water damage. In fact, if your wood warps, then you may have significant water damage in your home. Water and wood simply don't mix. Over time, water can make the panels in your flooring split and warp.

You See Water Stains on Your Ceiling

Another telltale sign you have water damage is brown, circular stains on your ceiling. These stains may be the result of water leaking into your home due to a roof leak. If you notice these stains, you must take action immediately. Without fixing your roof, you could make matters worse.

You Have Sagging Paint On Your Wall

Finally, if you notice that you have sagging paint or wallpaper on your wall, then it’s possible you have water damage. Sagging paint and wallpaper is common when you have water damage due to pipes leaking in your wall. When you notice this, your best option is to contact a local plumber immediately.

If you notice any of these signs, remember, hope isn’t lost. Your best resource to help you maintain your home is your local plumber.

If you have water damage and need repairs, contact the professionals at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby/Trimble/Spencer/Henry. 502.241.6861

The Importance of Prompt Restoration After A Fire

8/18/2017 (Permalink)

The Importance of Prompt Restoration After A Fire

If you are a victim of a fire, damage restoration is probably one of the last things on your mind, but it is paramount to your home’s recovery.  The longer you delay the cleaning, deodorizing, and restoration of your home and belongings, the more chance there is that the damage from smoke, water, and fire will intensify.  Cleaning up after a fire is a tough job.  Smoke, ash, and soot are hard to clean, and the smells require deep deodorizing.

The wisest course of action is to contact SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby to aid you. Fire restoration must be put into effect as soon as possible after your fire.  Prolonged exposure to the ravages of fire can take its toll on more than soft materials like cloth.  Even metallic objects can become pitted and corroded after only a few days exposure to fire and ash.  If you are unclear as to how to find a reputable service, your insurance agent should be able to refer a certified and experienced company in your area.

Because of their specialized training unique certification, and access to the right equipment and supplies, professional companies can often restore a home to near perfect pre-fire beauty. 

The restoration process is a rigorous one and focuses on the cleaning, sanitizing, and repair of the structure as well as any materials in the structure that have been damaged by fire, smoke, or water.  Your home needs to be aired out for as long possible before undergoing a deep cleaning.  This will diminish the effects of smoke and help deter the growth of mold and mildew. 

Your technicians might employ the use of dehumidifiers, fans, and shop-vacs for this stage of the remediation.  They will start at the sub floors and work up.  Sub-floors are inspected for damage and either cleaned or replaced.

Rugs and Carpets (if possible) are cleaned and deodorized using a chemical process to remove stains and odors (most often carpets and padding are discarded).  All drywall and paneling is checked for moisture retention, and the possibility of mold/mildew growth.  This will determine if it can be cleaned or must be torn out and replaced. 

Upholstery and curtains also undergo a rigorous cleaning cycle involving deep cleaning, sanitizing, and an odor removal process.  Your Furniture is most often taken to a shop to be restored to its pre-fire condition.  Throughout the process, the emphasis will be on deodorizing and sanitizing.

The mutual goal of the restoration team, and the homeowner, is a home that is beautifully restored and safe to live in once again.  While it is possible for you to undertake this daunting task on your own, it is not advisable.  Not only are you still undergoing the stress of having been through a fire, you may not realize the extent of damage to your home, or improperly clean.  Either of these things could be a health or safety risk for your family.

Contact SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby/Trimble/Henry/Spencer to speak to a Mitigation Specialist today. 502.241.6861

Attics and Water Damage

8/17/2017 (Permalink)

Attics and Water Damage

Attics and water damages go hand-in-hand. Your attic is one of the main places where water damages and mold will occur. Your attic is one of the places you do not visit often. You go up to your attic when you need something. It is important to check your attic regularly for leaks.

Some houses have water heaters in their attics. Water heaters are known to leak. Attics are also what takes the brunt of storms, along with your roof. If you see water stains on your ceiling, it is highly likely you have a leak in your attic.

Disaster Cleanup Services has some information to help you keep your attic water free. 

  • Check Your Attic Regularly

It is important to check your attic as often as your check the rest of your home. Your attic could be holding water, which will cause your ceiling to leak, as well as cause mold damages.  

  • Check your Roofing After Severe Weather

After a severe storm or heavy winds, it is crucial to check your roofing and ensure it is still intact. A missing shingle could cause water damages to your attic, which will eventually cause mold and major water damages. 

  • Check for Leaks in your Attic

When in your attic, give it a once-over to make sure it doesn’t have any leaks or small holes that could allow water inside. 

  • Make Sure Your Water Heater is Working Properly

If your water heater is old or isn’t functioning as well as it should, you should have it checked by a professional. If your water heater leaks, you will end up with a flooded home, and possible major water damages. 

Above are a few simple ways to protect your home from water damages and mold. If you do have water damages or mold, give a SERVPRO of  Oldham/Shelby a call immediately. The longer you wait, the more the water will damage.

502.241.6861

Heavy Rains, Water Damage and Your Home

8/15/2017 (Permalink)

Heavy Rains, Water Damage and Your Property
As our climate changes, occasions of violent storm and intense rain that causes flash floods seem to be increasing.  Rain water that drenches your property should flow away from your home.  However, if it does not, the damage to your home could be quite extensive.

Hence, getting a proper understanding of your how water drains from your property will help you to protect your home.

The Dangers of Improper Drainage

Good home drainage redirects water away from the foundation.  If this drainage is blocked, damage, or inadequate, storm waters can collect near your home.  This first result usually is extensive bacteria and mold growth.  In time, water can damage the concrete of the home’s foundation, crack sidewalks, deteriorate driveways, erode soil, and rotten wooden structures.

Addressing Areas of Poor Drainage

After a rain storm is the best time to walk your property to identify areas of poor drainage.  These areas will tend to have either pools of water or remain wet longer than other areas.  If you have found any, you can address them in multiple ways.  

Add New Drain Pipes

Low spots in your yard or net to your home’s foundation can benefit from underground drainage pipes that capture water and directs it elsewhere.  When installed well, drainage pipes can save a property from slow erosion and costly water damage repairs.

Plant a Xero-scape Garden

A xero-scape garden features minimalists designs with plants that can handle the rough conditions of dry conditions.  Yet, these plants still soak up water very well which could be quite beneficial if you have areas that collect water during storms.

Improve or Repair Gutters

You may be surprise at how many homes are damaged by the very items that should protect them—gutters.  Damaged or blocked gutters can result in storm water being directed to the home.  We’ve seen where years of sun damage has compromised gutters and rendered them useless.

Of course, if you have experienced water damage from a storm, you should call a professional water damage restoration company.  SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby/Trimble/Henry/Spencer is a full-scale restoration service provider specializing in water damage restoration. (502) 241.6861

Tips for Preventing Water Damage To Home Exteriors

8/14/2017 (Permalink)

Water can enter your home in many ways and end up damaging the foundation. To fight back against water intrusion, take preventative measures both on your home’s interior and exterior. Here are essential tips to safeguard your home’s exterior from water:

Roof

  • Check your roof to ensure the shingles, flashings or tiles aren’t missing, broken, cracked, curled or damaged in other ways.
  • Make sure the vents, flues, chimneys, air conditioners, and evaporative coolers are properly installed and in good shape.
  • Check for leaks around rooftop air-conditioning units, vents for exhaust or plumbing, or other specialized equipment.
  • Cut tree limbs that hang above your roof so they don’t cling to shingles and trap moisture. Leaves or twigs can also clog your gutters.  

Gutters and Downspouts

  • Ensure these are clean, free from debris, and in good condition so that water can flow freely.
  • Install metal screens to prevent leaves, twigs, silt and other debris from clogging the gutters and drainage holes.
  • Ensure downspouts direct water at least five feet away from your home’s foundation. Install downspout extensions if needed.

Doors and Windows

  • Check for leaks near the corners of your doors and windows. Signs of leaks include peeling paint, paint discoloration or swollen fram.
  • Protect exterior doors and windows from the sun, rain, and snow by installing overhangs above them.
  • Close your doors and windows to check for a tight fit. Look for cracks between the sash and frame of your windows.
  • Repair or replace damaged flashing or weather-stripping around windows.

Walls

  • Check and repair cracked or broken siding boards, bricks, stone or other masonry, as well as structural sheathing.
  • Seal any openings from wiring, plumbing, phone, cable, and heating and air conditioning lines with foam or caulk. Repair any damaged or unpainted wood surrounding these openings.
  • Check for signs of termite activity on the walls and the wooden structures around your foundation. Termites can eat wood, plaster, and even metal siding.
  • Ensure that the exhaust vent doors properly open and close.
  • Remove any shrubs and other landscaping features from along the walls.
  • When irrigating the garden, avoid directing water towards the house to prevent excessive water near the foundation.

Keeping your home safe from water damage from the inside is also critical. For professional water damage repair or mold removal service, contact your local SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby office. 502.241.6861

Why Is Your Carpet Flooded?

8/11/2017 (Permalink)

Why is Your Carpet Flooded?

In some cases, the cause of a flooded carpet is obvious, such as a house flood or water dripping from the ceiling. In other situations, it can be a challenge to determine the water’s source. Some of the most common unseen causes of a carpet flooding include broken or leaking kitchen or air conditioning equipment, damaged attic insulation, and water leaks inside the walls.

If you have a flooded carpet, dealing with the moisture as quickly as possible is the key to mitigating the water damage to your home. The longer you leave the water, the more time it has to seep into your wallboards, walls, and flooring. As moisture spreads, it can become more difficult to manage and lead to mold growth and increased property damage.

Professional water damage mitigation companies have the experience and equipment necessary for drying your carpets thoroughly and efficiently.

Flooded Carpet In Oldham, Shelby, Trimble, Henry or Spencer Counties? Call the Professionals at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby today to speak with a Mitigation Specialist. 

502.241.6861

Top 5 Myths About Water Damage

8/9/2017 (Permalink)

TOP 5 MYTHS ABOUT WATER DAMAGE AND FACTS TO BACK IT UP

 Water damage is a common problem. Most homes will have water damage at some point. There are a lot of myths about water damage.

Myth: Insurance Will not pay for Water Damage

Fact: In most cases, home insurance and renters insurance will pay for water damage. However, every company is different. Make sure that you ask your insurance provider if they will pay for water damage.

Myth: You can Take Care of Water Damage Yourself

Fact: You should always call a professional if your home has water damage. If water damage is not handled properly, then mold can develop. You may also end up spending more money in the long run if you do not get water damage repaired by a professional.

Myth: Water Removal can Wait

Fact: You do not want to wait. The longer you wait, the more likely your home is to develop mold. The water may also damage your floor and possessions.

Myth: Water Damage is not There if you Cannot see It

Fact: You may not be able to see the water damage. The water may in the ceiling or walls. A professional will be able to find the hidden water.

Myth: Water Removal is the Only Thing That is Necessary

Fact: Water removal is the first step. However, there are several other things that need to be done after all of the water is removed. The professional will have to sanitize and disinfect the area. They will also have to apply an anti-fungicide to the area in order to prevent mold from growing.

Water Damage In Your Home? Call SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby today at 502.241.6861

   

Water Damage And Your Oldham/Shelby Property

8/1/2017 (Permalink)

WATER DAMAGE AND YOUR OLDHAM/SHELBY COUNTY RENTAL PROPERTY

One of the quickest ways for you to start losing money on your Oldham/Shelby County rental property is water damage that has previously occurred or water damage that will occur. Both scenarios can get expensive and out of your control before you know it. There are some really good tips to prevent future water damage and some good tips on addressing and fixing damage that may already be in your property.

One of the best things you can do to proactively avoid future water damage to a rental property of yours is by routinely checking the water valves around the toilet and sink areas. Our local water is “hard” on pipes and valves. Over time that water can start causing corrosion and calcium build up around supply lines to our toilets and sinks and left unchecked those pipes can get bad enough to where they eventually burst potentially flooding out the entire property. If routinely checked and replaced when they start looking questionable that can save you thousands of dollars in future damages.

There are times when the pipe hasn’t necessarily burst yet but it has been leaking and that can be just as expensive if left alone. Some signs of water damage can be laminate flooring that has started to buckle, or slabs in your cabinets around your kitchen sink that have begun to sag or even mold growth or discoloration around the drywall of the toilet. If you are seeing any of these signs of water damage it will be in your best interest to call a professional restoration company that you trust such as SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby to come out and properly address the damages and remediate them before the integrity of your property is in question or even worse, before you risk the health of your trusted and faithful tenants.

Water Damage In Your Oldham/Shelby rental property? Call us today to speak to a Mitigation specialist. 502.241.6861

How To Prevent Mold Crawlspace Mold

7/21/2017 (Permalink)

How to Prevent Crawl Space Mold

Crawl spaces are prone to mold growth due to the high levels of moisture and humidity in these areas. Some of the most common causes of increased levels of humidity in the crawl space include water leaks, damaged insulation, and inadequate ventilation. To get rid of a mold problem in the crawl space, you have to control the moisture and humidity levels. Here are some tips to help you do so:
  • Check for water leaks in the foundation walls and crawl space ceiling — make sure there are no cracks that allow water to leak inside the crawl space. While checking for cracks, be sure to also inspect the HVAC ducts and plumbing components for leaks.
  • Ensure that the gutters and downspouts direct water away from your home’s foundation. Water that flows toward your house could enter your crawl space and basement.
  • Make sure your crawl space is properly ventilated — for every 150 square feet of crawl space area, there should be 1 square foot of ventilation. However, consult a professional to determine if you should keep the crawl space vents closed and, if so, find other ways to control the humidity in the crawl space.
  • Use plastic sheeting covers to insulate/encapsulate the crawl space floor and foundation walls. Vapor barriers like plastic sheeting covers trap the moisture that is evaporating from the soil and walls.
  • If your crawl space is already insulated, inspect the insulation once or twice a year. Make sure the insulation is not missing or sagging, which indicates that there could be a water problem.
  • Make sure dryer vents always discharge to the outside and not into the crawl space, attic or other area of the house. If they don’t, this can lead to a major increase in humidity.

Follow the above tips and the relative humidity in your crawl space should reach the desired level of 30 to 50 percent. Mold will easily grow if the humidity is above 70 percent.  For Mold Remediation and Water Damage repair, contact SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby.

 

Water Damage Starts Working Immediately to Destroy Your Home

7/17/2017 (Permalink)

Water Damage Starts Working Immediately to Destroy Your Home What’s the first thing that comes to mind when you arrive home and are shocked to find a flood? If you imagine yourself calling your mother, your insurance agent and maybe the neighbor to find out whether she has damage, we’d like to re-align your priorities. “Water damage grows exponentially worse” Water damage grows exponentially worse, the longer you wait to call SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby.  Within a matter of hours, the damage spreads its muggy little tentacles.Mold & mildew get a foothold in your carpets, furnishings and inside the wall water damage  Mold removalStanding water breeds microorganisms that cause rot odor grows more noxious and permanentdrywall is soaked, warped and rendered uselesswood swells and becomes malformedmetal tarnishes and rusts. At this point, insurance claims start to rise astronomically and the chances of recouping full value drop dramatically. And that’s just the beginning of this horror story. Water damage is real!, within a day or two, fungi appears, showing up as green or black mold or some especially creative-shaped mushrooms. Adhesives lose their grip on your ceramic tile. Wallpaper peels. Wooden door casings swell up. Floors buckle. Fabrics are stained beyond preservation. Papers must be discarded. Paint peels. Electronic components fail. The occupants are at risk from air-borne and water-borne contaminants. At SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby, we have seen this timeline unfold time and time again and have made a profession out of mediating water damages to homes. That’s why we feel a sense of urgency when a homeowner calls to report a water-damaged home or business. For most people, this is their first go-round with the horror. They are confused and don’t know where to turn. Should you call your brother and ask if he’s ever seen such a mess? Call your friend who owns a swimming pool service? We are perfectly sincere when we say, No! SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby should be your first call. Even if the water entering your home was clean (from a broken water intake pipe, for instance), it quickly turns into a cesspool. Stagnant water is a prime breeding site for organisms that cause disease and damage. Water-soaked materials, even after they start to dry, provide a fine environment for growing a good crop of mold and fungi. If your first call is to SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby, we can arrest the growth of mold before it becomes a serious situation, detracting from your home’s safety, comfort and value. It’s critical to attack the situation ASAP. Homeowners sometimes try to dry the affected areas themselves and learn afterward that it’s more complicated than just wiping up the kitchen floor after a spill. Mold spores are all around us. It takes a good soaking to revive them. And then they get the upper hand.SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby teamSERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby are experienced mold clean-up, restoration and mold removal experts. You don’t need to call a contractor or your brother-in-law. One call to SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby is enough to launch a professional clean-up job. Don’t wait until your home is beyond help because of odors, stains, structural damage, system failure and black mold. When you have water damage, call SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby. We’ll get to work restoring your home to its pristine condition, the way you remember it before the flood waters hit.

Commercial Water Damage Cause and Prevention

7/14/2017 (Permalink)

Commercial Water Damage Prevention

Large-scale losses can be prevented by following a few simple guidelines. Know where your emergency water shut-off valves are located,  in case you are not available. SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby is prepared to create an Emergency READY profile to do just that. 

By developing a SERVPRO Emergency READY Profile for your business, you minimize business interruption by having an immediate plan of action. Knowing what to do and what to expect in advance is the key to timely mitigation and can help minimize how water and fire damage can affect your business. There is no cost to you to complete the profile. 

It is a good idea to locate a water damage restoration company that provides emergency response before disaster strikes. Do your due diligence and call a few different companies to ask any questions you might have about their services or their experience with companies similar to yours. How quickly cleanup begins will impact the size of the loss.

Causes of Commercial Water Damage

Water damage can happen at any time. Whether from natural disasters, leaking roofs, frozen pipes, sewage backups, or flooding, water damage is a serious concern and a major threat to your commercial property.

Understanding the cause of the flooding is essential for proper cleanup, as clean water from a broken pipe or a leaking roof during a rainstorm will be treated differently than floodwaters and sewage backups. Let the commercial water damage experts at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby handle the cleanup and restoration of your property. 

Call us today to schedule your Emergency READY profile. 50.241.6861

How To Fix Ceiling Stains Following Water Damage

7/11/2017 (Permalink)

How to Fix Ceiling Stains As a Result of Water Damage

The consequence of heavy rainfall, earthquake, tropical storm, hurricane or any natural disaster can result in water damage and ceiling stains. Even if your home is still intact, there can be leaky roofs or pipes that can be present as well. Ceiling stains can also be the result of letting the bath rub overflow in an upstairs bathroom.

If you believe that fixing the water damage and/or sealing the ceiling stain is out of your skill set, calling a water restoration company, such as SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby, should be at the very top of your list. When it rains, it pours LITERALLY, so when it rains again, it can result in more water damage and ceiling stains in your home or place of business.

Unless the water has caused structural damage or has ruined the drywall, sealing a common water stain is something anyone can do with no problem.

To make sure that you fix the ceiling properly and that your ceiling stays beautiful and clear of water damage, you’ll need a few materials. Make sure that you have household cleaner, a wire brush, caulk or spackle and fine sandpaper for surface preparation. You’ll also need shellac to create a waterproof barrier over the area, primer, and paint.

The first thing once should do is make sure the ceiling stain isn’t soggy with water damage. If this is the case, you may have to replace the drywall to make sure that mold and mildew doesn’t form. Another thing, you have to make sure the problem is completely fixed before attempting to get rid of the ceiling stain. If the bathtub has a leak, please get a plumber to correctly fix the issue before attempting to replace the part of the ceiling that is stained.

If the surface where the ceiling stain isn’t wet, soggy, or extremely soft, your next move should be consisting of removing any loose paint that was a result. You can use the wire brush to help you when doing so. Along with removing the loose paint, you should also try to clean the area with any time of household cleaner. If you spot mildew or mold, make sure you disinfect with cleaner, bleach, and water. It is extremely important to make sure you wipe out the mold completely as it is a great chance that it may start to regrow.

Please make sure that the ceiling stain’s surface is completely dry before you prime. Some people even make sure that they use a hair dryer for small ceiling stains and a dehumidifier to dry up the bigger areas.

Before you prime, you should add a coat of shellac. It is best to let it dry then apply another coat. And always make sure you apply each coat in the same direction with a brush or roller.

After this is completely, you want to make sure that you use high quality primer to seal the stain permanently and completely.

Paint the area with the ceiling color after the primer dries. If you haven’t painted the ceiling for a while, the repair may appear lighter than the rest of the ceiling.

Water Damage In Your Home Or Business? Contact SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby to speak to a Mitigation Specialist today. 502.241.6861

What Should I Consider After A Wood Floor Is Flooded

7/6/2017 (Permalink)

What Should I Consider after a Wood Floor is Flooded?

In the event of a flooded hardwood floor, you should immediately drain the excess water, assess and document the damages, clear the flooded area, clean the dirt and dry the floor using air blowing equipment and dehumidifiers. At the end of this process, if the floor shows signs of cupping and crowning, consult a professional hardwood flooring installer to help you get the floor back in shape.

Successful restoration of flooded hardwood depends on factors such as response time, type of wood, amount of moisture and the degree of water damage already present. In any case, consider hiring a professional disaster restoration company that can adapt to the situation and provide specialized equipment for efficient drying. While waiting for the specialists to arrive at your home, here’s what you can do:

  • Stop the flow of water if the flooding occurred due to a burst pipe, washing machine failure or water heater failure.
  • Turn off the power to the affected room until the water has been removed.
  • Assess the damages before you begin the restoration in order to determine whether to clean up or replace the floor. Take photos, list damaged items and show them to your insurance company.
  • Remove any items (carpet, furniture, etc.) from the floor and take them to a dry area. Wear protective gear such as gloves, rubber boots and a mask.
  • Open windows and doors and to allow moisture to evaporate more quickly.
  • Start removing the excess water with a wet/dry vacuum cleaner or with mops and old cloth. If the water level is deep, use a pump to drain the water. Ask someone to help, since the longer the water stays on the floor, the higher the chances are for mold to grow and the bigger the damages will be.
  • Use dehumidifiers, heaters and fans to speed up the drying process. Place them on top of an elevated surface in the flooded area and close the windows. Direct the fans towards the floor’s surface.
  • Clean any debris and mud from the floor with non-abrasive brush and detergent while the heaters, fans and dehumidifiers are running. Rinse the floor with clean water and continue to dry the floor.

In conclusion, when dealing with a flooded hardwood floor, act quickly and contact a professional flood remediation company such as SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby. 502.241.6861

Professional Water Damage Restoration For Kitchen Tap Overflow

7/5/2017 (Permalink)

Professional Water Damage Restoration for Kitchen Tap Overflow

Water damage commonly takes place in the kitchen when the kitchen tap overflows. This problem occurs at the most inconvenient time in our kitchen. Even if the damage looks like it is just a small quantity of water, homeowners will never know the full extent of the damage until they discover what is below the surface. This is a reason why professional damage restoration should be done whenever this problem occurs in the kitchen.

There are also cases when water damage can be caused by the apartment above you if the owner of that apartment forgets to turn off their water in the kitchen or there is a broken. When you live in a higher unit and you leave the kitchen tap running and the sink overflowing, this may result in water running down the adjoining walls causing water damage to the apartment below you.

When you face this problem in your apartment or in your home, do not hesitate to call in a professional water damage technician to fix the problem. The technician will do full inspection of the damage and identify which method to use for restoration.

Water damage restoration companies usually start by extracting the water off the premises as promptly as possible. In this process, technicians use water damage restoration tools like dehumidifiers. Dehumidifiers are placed where the water had traversed. A dehumidifier can extract about 52 liters of water daily from the damaged part of your kitchen.

For the drying process, the technicians can use high-powered fans to ensure maximum air flow. Powerful fans are needed for the drying of cement, carpet, vinyl, wood, and other things in the kitchen. They help with the final drying of the premises by allowing them to operate until the walls and floors are completely dry.

The next part of the restoration process is applying antimicrobial solution to the damaged area of your kitchen. This chemical solution is needed because it helps remove mold and prevent its re-occurrence. Mold thrives in damp surface, so complete drying and antimicrobial disinfecting is needed to eliminate this problem.

If you have any water damage to your property, let a professional water damage technician handle the problem. There are water damage problems like mold growth and bad odor caused by contaminated water that only professional restorers can fix. If you want to fix these problems properly, contact a certified damage restoration company.

Water Damage In Your Home? Contact SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby to speak to a Mitigation Specialist today. 502.241.6861

Your Home's Weak Points From Rain

6/29/2017 (Permalink)

Your Home's Weak Points From Rain

Now that spring is in full effect, we’re seeing more and more flood losses due to heavy rains. And while these flood damages can look very different, there are some common areas of the home that are more prone to attack from rain water when the clouds break. So let’s look at some of those areas of weakness, discuss what happens to cause problems, and what you can do to prevent (well, at least help reduce the risk of flooding happening…there is no surefire step(s) to take that will ensure your home is impervious to heavy rains).

Where does rain water attack a home?

Any section of your home can become a victim of rain water intrusion, but the reality is there are certain sections that are much more prone to attack than others.

The roof

 Let’s discuss the most obvious entry point first: the system that takes the biggest beating when heavy rains come down. Your roofing system protects you from the elements and is designed to shed water away from your house (in concert with your gutter system). But even the smallest problem with your roof can cause big problems when a heavy rain occurs. Just one damaged or missing shingle can allow hundreds of gallons of rain into your attic and walls should a sustained period of rain hit your area.

We've written about it before, but it’s extremely important that you inspect your roof at the end of winter and before the spring rains hit so that you can identify and fix any problem areas before they’re asked to stand up to the pressures of spring rains. Assuming you can safely do so, replacing a damaged shingle is not that difficult and can end up saving you a ton of money should it prevent a flooding situation.

Window seals

How long ago were your windows installed? A lot of times the window unit itself can stand up to the constant attack of rain, but the sealant used to install the window can erode over time. It’s always a good idea to check your windows’ seals pre-Spring to make sure they aren’t cracked or beginning to peel away from the home. 

 Main plumbing drain

This is the most overlooked problem, and sadly one of the more common types of flooding damages we see in a home. Basically what can happen is when it rains a lot (if your city is serviced by what is known as a combined sewer system), the main pipe in the street can become overloaded with rain water. As an escape from the flooded pipe, the water goes wherever it can. The easiest place for it to go is any pipes that tie into the line it’s in. That’s your home’s main drain pipe. So the water shoots back up your pipe and into your home, bringing with it raw sewage and a host of dangerous pathogens.

The most effective way to prevent such a scenario from taking place is having a licensed plumber come to your home to install a backflow valve. These are installed as the first fitting outside your home (where the pipe exiting your home ties into the pipe running below your lawn is) and are designed to detect when water is coming backup the pipe and release a valve that will then act as a barrier to stop the water from entering your home. While it isn’t foolproof, it can greatly diminish the threat of a backup issue when heavy rains come.

Basement walls and floors

You see this type of flooding damage most often when an area is hit with sustained rain storms over the course of multiple days, or when back to back storms batter an area. What happens is the water table (meaning the water that has seeped into the ground in the area around the home) becomes fully saturated. The pressure of this water on the concrete walls and floors of the basement become too much, and the water begins to seep into the basement through these barriers. Yes, concrete is porous and as such will allow water to pass through it!

How can you protect your basement against this type of attack? There are a couple of options. One is to install interior drainage tiles that will collect this groundwater and transport it through corrugated piping and release it a safe distance from the home. The other method is to have a sump pump installed in the lowest area of your basement. The catch basin will collect any intruding water and the pump itself will pump the water away from the home. If you have a nice finished basement and live in an area prone to flooding, we strongly suggest you have a basement water proofer come out and perform an assessment to discuss the best methods for waterproofing your finished basement in the event of rain storms.

Do you have flood damages from recent rains?

If so, we would be grateful for the opportunity to survey the damages and offer our recommendations for how to most cost-effectively repair them. Call SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby today and we’ll send out the closest on-call crew to fully assess the damages and provide you with an estimate. And best of all, we use industry-standard pricing and back all of our flood damage cleanup services with a 100% satisfaction guarantee! Just give us a call and we’ll be on our way! 502.241.6861

Trust SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby & Our Process

6/28/2017 (Permalink)

Trust SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby & Our Process

 We fielded a call this morning that caused us to want to talk about something: trust. It’s not something most Restoration Companies spend a lot of time talking about, but it’s absolutely the bedrock foundation upon which our services must be performed. One of the things you notice right off the bat when fielding a call from a home or business owner who has just discovered water damage in their property is how frantic they are. It’s definitely understandable, and a lot of that chaos is driven by their lack of understanding about the work we do and its results. So let’s talk about trust in both us and the water damage restoration process. Hopefully after reading this post, you’ll get a clearer idea of the ‘how’ in our work which will allow you to place your trust in us.

Why can you trust our flood damage process?

First let’s talk about the actual process of taking a home severely damaged by flooding and returning it to the same shape it was in prior to the flooding. That seems like an impossibility for many people when they call us and you can hear it in their voice. But believe it or not, these types of situations happen all the time and we’ve dealt with thousands of them. For any water damage loss, there is a formula, a plan, and a strategy that can be implemented to get it fixed. While that formula requires tweaks based on the actual situation we run into, it follows these general guidelines:

Step 1. A complete onsite analysis

No job can begin without first understanding the impact the flood has had on the home, its contents and its structure. Many people call us and ask how much it’s going to cost to cleanup flood damage in their home. They want a dollar number. It’s impossible to say without first seeing the damage. But once we have had a chance to see the flood damage firsthand, we can not only give you a clearer picture of the cost but also explain the exact steps we’ll take to remove the water and debris as well as clean and dry the home.

The best part for you as a potential customer is the initial meeting and assessment is free and there is no obligation on your part to move forward. We view the initial meeting as an opportunity to earn your trust. The one thing we know before we even arrive is that we are fully capable of handling your flood damaged property. But you don’t know that. So we want to build trust with you and are willing to do so at no cost or obligation to you.

Step 2. Surface & item removal

In many instances, especially with grey water from a flooding, certain areas of the property as well as soaked items must be thrown out. This is called the demolition phase of the process and it allows us to remove sections that can’t be salvaged and access the interior surfaces that were also damaged. Depending on the category of the loss, we may have to use hazardous material disposal bags and have our technicians in complete protective suits from head to toe.

Step 3. Moisture removal

You probably already know this, but perhaps the greatest immediate threat after the flooding has subsided is black mold. What most fail to realize is just how quickly that becomes a threat to your home or business. Usually you have about 48 hours (depending on the environmental conditions present in your property). And the only way to stop mold is to get rid of the environment it needs to grow. And that boils down to getting the excess moisture out of the walls, floors, ceilings and other areas of your home that were damaged in the flood. We show up at your house with all of the various water removal systems we may need so that we can begin that timely process immediately. We can get the majority of the water out very quickly, at which point the remaining steps are designed to get the moisture out that is trapped within the surfaces of your home. But before we move on, we take one additional step….

Step 4. Mold prevention

The crucial step we take at this point is to get the surfaces even wetter. Well, technically what we are doing is spraying down the areas that are wet with an application that prohibits mold growth. It’s absolutely vital to a successful outcome but something many aren’t aware is even necessary. The inhibitor gives us a narrow window to complete the next phase of the flood damage cleanup process.

Step 5. Drying of the structure

Perhaps the most difficult and time consuming part of the process is getting the last couple of percentage points of moisture out of your home’s surfaces. We use an array of drying equipment that can dry various types of surfaces quickly, and we monitor the drying phase to ensure we’re moving quickly but also to make sure we don’t over dry. What many homeowners don’t understand is that every surface in their home needs some moisture. And without it, those surfaces either begin to fail or at a minimum lose their visual appeal. So not only do we need to remove the excess moisture quickly, we need to leave some moisture in each surface.

Step 6. Reconstruction

The final step, which will either be done by us or a sub-contractor, is the work of replacing the sections that were removed in step 2. This can take some time but the goal is always the same: make sure the home is in the same shape it was before the flood when we are finished.

Hopefully this quick walk-through of the process gives you some knowledge that you can then apply to the entire ordeal. It is our sincere hope that you will entrust us with the very big job of making sure your flooded home is restored correctly. As stated above, we believe that we have the team, experience, skills and tools to ensure that is the case!

Water or Flood Damage In Your Home? Call SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby to speak to a Mitigation Specialist today. 502.241.6861

Understanding Equipment In Your Home During A Water Damage Restoration

6/27/2017 (Permalink)

Understanding Equipment in Your Home during Water Damage Restoration

First of all, if you have had a water damage situation in your Minneapolis-area home, let us say how sorry we are for the mess! But, you have come to the right place with SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby and we want to help you understand the process of effectively drying your home back to its preloss condition as if this never happened.

Let’s first set the scene. You’ve been away on vacation and return home to discover a pipe in your master bathroom burst. That water has spent several days running out of that pipe on the second floor, down through the walls to the first floor, and into the basement, leaving the concrete floor and rug even on that level completely saturated.

When a water damage restoration crew arrives at your home, someone will do a thorough walk through to get an understanding of the scope of the project and damage. That helps the restoration company determine what equipment they need, and what the drying process will likely entail.

Air Movers, Dryers, & Water Extractors

As one person does a walk through, other technicians will immediately get the drying process underway. In situations where there is standing water or water in materials like drywall, time is of the essence. Some experts believe mold can start growing as soon as 48 to 72 hours after water enters, and sits, in a space.

If there is standing water, water extraction equipment will be used immediately to remove any standing water, and suction as much out of porous surfaces like carpet as possible.

From there, air movers and dryers will be brought in and strategically placed for maximum drying effectiveness. Believe it or not, there is actually a science behind this placement, as well as industry standards that clearly outline this drying process for restoration contractors.

Thermal Imaging/Infrared Cameras

With a loss like this, it’s likely there is water inside your walls. However, thanks to innovations in restoration technology, tearing out an entire wall may not be necessary. A skilled restoration contractor will take a look at the walls in the affected areas of the home using a thermal imaging or infrared camera. While this technology doesn’t show actual moisture, it shows temperature differences behind the wall that could indicate moisture. An experienced contractor will be able to determine what the temperature readings mean and determine the best approach for drying those hard to reach wall cavities.

Moisture Meters

You might also see a technician using a moisture meter. These simple tools do measure moisture levels inside different materials like drywall, concrete, and hardwood floors. Readings will be taking during the start of the drying process, and again throughout the process to determine progress, and then again at the end to determine all the surfaces are truly dry. These moisture meters take readings either by sitting flat on a surface or by sticking two pin probes into the surface, usually drywall, creating very minimal damage.

Our goal at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby is to not only return your home to its preloss condition but to do it quickly and effectively, and get your life back to normal as quickly as possible. If you have any questions about the process or the equipment you see in your home, just ask!

 

Preventing Attic Water Damage

6/23/2017 (Permalink)

PREVENTING ATTIC WATER DAMAGE

Your attic may not be a place you check for damage often, but water damage can creep up on you.

Attics can suffer from both water or air leaks, but water leaks are much more damaging and dangerous. Water damage in your attic can have some pretty obvious signs, such as darkened water stains, dark mold on the ceiling of your home, or missing flashing on the roof itself. Air leaks can lead to water damage over time as well though, so you need to be sure to take care of both of them. Here are some tips on preventing attic water damage in your attic.

Where Are Leaks?

Tracking down attic leaks can be difficult due to insulation blocking the source of the problem. Look for stains and remember, water travels downhill, so if you see a stain somewhere just look up. Some problem areas for water damage in attics include chimneys, plumbing vents, attic vents, holes for internet or cable installation, wires, and ducting for vents. Even the smallest gap can be a source of attic water damage.

Why Do They Happen?

It all depends on the source of the failure. Sometimes your roof can be damaged, or if your gutters are broken, that could lead to the pooling of water. This is especially problematic during the colder months when ice can build up over time then suddenly melt and all pour in at once. Rain, like we’ve been getting plenty of lately, can also lead to leaks, but these are usually pretty easy to discover. You may need to change the shingles or, if your roof is old enough, the entire roof may need to be replaced.

Solving Water Leaks

Be sure to have your roof inspected annually and try to regularly maintain your gutters. If possible, try venting humid air from kitchens and bathrooms outside instead of going straight into the attic. Ask a contractor to spray foam insulation into areas that you think may be problematic. If you caulk around wires and cables, it will prevent air leaks, which could prevent long-term attic water damage.

Experienced Attic Water Damage?

If you’ve been hit by water damage, don’t hesitate to give us a call. We can help professionally restore any damaged areas. If you just have questions about disaster prevention, let us know too. Being properly prepared is essential for your safety and well-being.

Call the professionals at  SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby. We have certified licensed restoration technicians on call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. 502.241.6861

Choosing A Sump Pump That Lasts

6/22/2017 (Permalink)

Choosing a Sump Pump that Lasts - FAQ

A sump pump is one of your home’s best defenses against flooding. These devices pump out water that has accumulated in the sump basin, which is commonly found in basements, saving you thousands of dollars in flood damage. When choosing a sump pump for your home or property, keep in mind the following information:

1. What types of sump pumps are there and what are their Pros and Cons?

There are two primary types of sump pumps: Submersible and Column (Pedestal). Submersible sump pumps require a larger sump pit and, because they are below water, the motor will be cooled off faster and the noise level is reduced when the pump is operating. Pedestal sump pumps are useful when the sump pit is narrow or shallow. They typically last longer because the motor is mounted above the sump. In addition, they consume less power. The only trade-off is that it pumps less water during a flood.

2. What type of float switch do I need?

You have three main options: tethered, vertical and electronic float switches. A tethered switch is good for deeper sump pits with a large diameter. This switch extends the period of time between pump cycles, allowing the motor to cool off more efficiently. Vertical switches are better for narrow and shallow sump pits and will kick off the pump more often. Electronic switches are more compact and require a small sump pit. However, don’t use an electronic switch if the pump receives water from a wash sink or your laundry machine, to prevent soap scum from making contact with the switch. 

3. How much horsepower should my sump pump have?

More horsepower means that the water is pumped faster, but it also means more power consumption. If you have frequent water problems and your sump pit fills rapidly, choose a sump pump with more horsepower. Also, consider increasing the size of your sump pit to prevent the pump from running too frequently.

4. What material should my sump pump be made of: cast iron or thermoplastic?

Cast iron sump pumps are generally stronger than thermoplastic, but both are designed for long life. Besides the stronger material, the advantage of cast iron pumps is that they distribute heat from the motor better, maximizing the cooling ability of the sump pump. Plastic sump pumps, on the other hand, are less expensive.

5. Do I need a check valve?

A check valve is a good addition to your sump pump system. It prevents water in the discharge pipe to fall back into the sump pit, which would be re-pumped if weren’t for the check valve. Consider purchasing a check valve to save on electricity and prolong the life of your sump pump.

6. Do I need a battery-operated backup pump?

In addition to your main sump pump, you can install a backup pump that uses batteries to make sure water is pumped out during a power outage or when the main pump malfunctions. If you live in a flood prone area, a backup pump adds extra flooding protection to your basement or crawl space.

In order to ensure your sump pump works properly throughout the year, test and maintain it periodically.  For professional fire, water, and mold restoration services, contact SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby today. 502.241.6861

The 10 Steps of Effective Sewage Cleanup

6/21/2017 (Permalink)

 

Proper sewage cleanup is very important and it should be done immediately. This is because sewage water contains microbes such as bacteria and viruses that may cause serious illnesses. As such, you need to take appropriate measures immediately especially if sewage starts leaking inside your home or even business premises.

Proper sewage cleanup entails the use different techniques that are aimed at restoring the building to its safe and usable condition. In most cases, the bad smell from the sewage causes discomfort which drives people away from a building.

Effective Sewage Cleanup

To cleanup sewage effectively, you need to start by planning the cleanup process. This entails identifying the areas that the sewage may have spread to.

Generally, the steps of cleaning up sewage can be described as follows:

  1. Wear protective clothing before entering the areas of the building where the sewage has spread to. This includes waterproof gloves and rubber boots and they should be worn before entering the affected places or touching any item that has come into contact with the sewage.
  2. Inspect the scope of the sewage contamination in the property. This includes checking the exterior and interiors of the building to ensure that you plan the cleanup process properly.
  3. Decide on the persons that are going to do the cleanup. You can do it yourself or hire professionals to do this. It is highly advisable that you hire a professional for the job because these have the necessary skills, experience and equipment. However, if you are going to do the clean up, take appropriate measures to ensure your safety.
  4. Remove furnishings and other items from the places where the sewage has spread to in the property. This includes items that cannot be salvaged such as wet padding and carpets. These should be removed so that they can be disposed of properly. They should be collected using plastic bags so that they can be discarded properly. Salvageable items such as plastic items, dishes and some furniture pieces should be removed, taken to a safe place and cleaned properly.
  5. Avoid cross-contamination. This entails taking measures that prevents the spread of sewage to places that have not been affected by sewage. To do this, you should close doors that link contaminated rooms to non-contaminated rooms. Take appropriate measures when handling different items because some can be in the affected areas but without contact with the sewage.
  6. Remove sewage content. This entails removing porous materials such as card boards, clothes, mattresses, web books, upholstered furniture and sewage water. These should be collected using plastic bags. Standing sewage water should also be removed together with solid waste and discarded properly. The affected area should then be prepared properly for drying.
  7. Wash the contaminated areas. This should be done after removing all items in the contaminated area as well as the sewage water. Household detergent can be used to clean the affected places. Sewage dirt and contamination should be removed in all areas.
  8. Dry the areas affected as fast as possible. Dehumidifiers and portable fans should be used to dry the wet places after sewage cleanup. Additionally, windows should be opened especially to let in fresh air.
  9. Use disinfectants for the contaminated places. Professional sewage cleaners use different disinfectants and sanitizers which are more than diluted bleach. The choice depends on the materials and surfaces that need treatment. Nevertheless, it is important to use an effective disinfectant.
  10. Check equipment. You should check appliances, fixtures and water supply line to ensure that they are not contaminated. If contaminated, clean them and disinfect them as well. Thus, you should inspect all areas in your home to ensure that there is no equipment or parts that are left with sewage water or dirt.

Once you are done with sewage cleanup, you need to take appropriate measures to prevent future leak. This entails ensuring that you have appropriate sewer backup and contacting professional plumbers to check your sewer line regularly.

Cleaning Items after Sewage Cleanup

Once you have cleaned up sewage in your home, you should now clean the items that may have come into contact with the sewage. You should also wear protective clothing before starting this process.

  • Wash all clothing and linens using hot water or dry clean them professionally.
  • If there are items that you cannot clean using a dry cleaner or hot water adequately, discard them. Such items include mattresses, wall coverings, carpeting and upholstered furniture.
  • Clean hard-surfaced floors, walls and other surfaces using water and soap. Disinfect them using appropriate product and adequate amount of water and then dry them properly to prevent mold growth.
  • Avoid eating food that might have been in your home before the sewage breakup.

During the cleanup process, children should be kept away from the contaminated home or areas. If sewage has spread to a relatively large area, it is advisable to contact a registered septic or utility contractor to do the cleanup.

Why Hire a Professional Sewage Cleanup Service?

There are many reasons why you should hire professionals for sewage cleanup in your home. A professional cleanup service is offered by experts who know how to inspect buildings to determine the extent of contamination. These experts also observe high safety standards during the cleanup process. They also use the right equipment and products during the cleanup process. As such, their results are the best ad their cleanup process is efficient.

Once you hire professionals, your sewage water cleanup process will be quick and all sewage dirt will be removed from your home. They will also use the right equipment to dry your home and this will prevent growth of mold and future problems in your home. They will also use the right products to keep your home safe from fungi, mold, parasites, viruses and bacteria that may be caused by the sewage. 

Sewer Damage Your In Your Home? Call the Professionals at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby at 502.241.6861

Water Damage To Furniture

6/16/2017 (Permalink)

What category of water damaged your furniture?

As with any home water damage, you first have to identify the risk factors present in the water. By that we mean what level of pathogens are found in the water and what is the risk level that a disease could be contracted from coming into contact with that water? For a quick refresher on the categories of water damage:

Category 1 (clean water) – this is water typically from supply lines in your home’s plumbing system. In other words, water you could have drank before it leaked out. It doesn’t pose a threat to your health.

Category 2 (grey water) – grey water has some form of contaminants in it, whether it’s from chemicals or other biological agents. Think of things like a fish aquarium overflowing or breaking, or a water heater leaking or even a washing machine overflowing. It isn’t going to kill you, but you sure don’t want the water to get in your eyes or to ingest it.

Category 3 (black water) – this is the nasty stuff. Raw sewage, flood water from a nearby river. This is the water that can make you really sick and that you should do everything in your power to avoid coming into contact with. In fact, you should even breathe the air around the water!

As you can probably guess, the water category plays a big role in determining what path must be taken to clean your water damaged furniture. But let’s start out by mentioning what should be obvious but is often ignored:

You can not effectively clean water damaged furniture that has been soaked by category 3 water damage. In very, very rare instances it may make sense to try (think a really expensive Persian rug), but usually the costs of doing so far outweigh the cost of replacing the furniture. And that goes for any type of porous surface furniture. Whether it’s a love seat, sofa, or even wood table, it’s got to be thrown out!

When it comes to category 2 and 3 losses, there are methods that can be utilized to cost-effectively clean and dry most pieces of furniture. We’ll talk about those next…

How to clean & dry water damaged furniture

First off, as is usually the case when you’re researching any process related to water damage, there is some really, really bad advice out there. Set wood furniture outside and let it dry? Goodness gracious, hopefully no one followed that advice! Anyways, generally speaking the 2 most common types of furniture that get water damaged are upholstered pieces and wood pieces.

Upholstered furniture

Upholstered chairs or couches can be tricky to clean and dry. Usually, the pieces can be pressure treated using very high temperature water that kills any bacteria or other pathogens present. Once free from disease causing agents, the piece must be properly dried. It will typically be placed in a room where air movers and a dehumidifier can be set up. The air movers are placed strategically to pass hot (dry) air over and through the furniture. The moisture then evaporates into the air where an industrial-strength dehumidifier captures the moisture, where it can be released outside the home. In some special circumstances (like in the event the water has soaked the furniture for a long period of time), the upholstery may need to be removed entirely so that the cleaning, treating and drying process can get to those hard to reach places that were damaged.

Wood furniture

Have you ever left a cold glass of water on a wood coffee table and minutes later noticed the water rings? That’s how quickly water can infiltrate wood and cause damage. So imagine that occurring on a much, much larger scale. Wood furniture can be very tricky, to say the least. If the piece has set in the water for a few days or more, it may be ruined permanently and need to be thrown out. Another issue many times with water damaged wood furniture is that the glue/bindings holding many of the pieces together may become ruined. In that case, the pieces may be removed, cleaned & dried before putting them back on the piece. But overall, the piece will need to have its finish stripped, cleaned and bleached, dried out, then have the finish re-applied. It’s certainly a time and labor-intensive process. As is the case with any project like this, if you’re going through your insurance company, a cost analysis will need to be done to determine if it’s more cost-effective to simply replace the furniture piece instead of restoring the original piece!

 Water Damage In Your Home or Business? Contact the professionals at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby to speak to a Mitigation Specialist today. 502.241.6861

An Overview Of The Contents Restoration Process

6/15/2017 (Permalink)

An Overview of the Contents Restoration Process

In the aftermath of a fire or water disaster, it is absolutely important to initiate contents restoration immediately. Your precious belongings — from family heirlooms and antiques to important documents and electronic equipment — have to be cleaned and treated promptly if you want to save them from total ruin.

Our staff at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby are highly trained and have had many years of experience performing contents recovery and restoration for disaster-affected properties. After we receive your call, our team will go to your property immediately to inspect its condition. We will transfer your belongings to our special climate-controlled facility where the restoration work will be performed.

In case we determine that some of your items cannot be restored to their preloss condition, we will let you know about it. We can prepare a list which you can check so that you can make an informed decision about what to do with your belongings. Nothing will be disposed of without your knowledge or permission.

The items we restore include the following: 

  • Soft Goods – Items like clothing, drapes, beddings, leather goods, shoes, sportswear, backpacks, and so on will be cleaned to rid them of dirt and pathogens.
  • Hard Goods – Hard goods include furniture, crockery, glass, crystal, jewelry, figurines, and so on.
  • Electronics – We also restore items like televisions, computers, stereos, and other electronic appliances.
  • Documents and media – Important documents like books, bound volumes, manuscripts, paper documents, and even digital media like CDs and DVDs can be restored depending on their condition.

If your property has been sullied by a fire or water disaster, don’t dispose of your belongings immediately. Call SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby, and let us find out what can be done to save your precious items. 502.241.6861

Let's Talk About French Drains

6/9/2017 (Permalink)

What are french drains?

French drains are a system of trenches and perforated piping that collects and transports surface and groundwater away from a home’s foundation and deposits it safely near a storm drain.  In many instances, a sump pump is used to get the water out from below the ground so it can exit away from the home. While most people think of an exterior french drain, many waterproofing contractors these days recommend an interior drain tile system instead.

Interior versus exterior

Exterior french drains require digging a trench down to the footings of the foundation so that any groundwater that is a threat to the foundation’s walls can be collected. In most cases, a sump pump is necessary to get the water back up out of the ground and away from the premises. The deep trench is backfilled with crushed rock and gravel and can be very difficult to excavate in the first place if there is any concrete patio or decking around the home. With an interior drain, the slab is excavated and the same process is done inside the home.  As we said above, now-a-days most contractors will suggest an interior drainage system because it’s cheaper to install and easier to maintain/repair should anything go wrong.

When are french drains a good idea?

Even a reputable waterproofing company will tell you that when it comes to keeping water away from your home, the simplest solutions are often the most effective. We’ve blogged about these steps many times, but the short and sweet is you should:

() attach downspouts to your gutters and make sure they deposit rain water at least 6 feet away from your foundation

() slope the grade of your lawn away from your foundation. The rule of thumb is 1 inch for every 6 feet.

In the majority of cases, these simple steps will keep ground and surface water away from your foundation and your home dry. But in some situations, these steps aren’t enough and the addition of a french drain may be necessary. These situations include:

() Homes built on hillsides where it’s impossible to slope the grade away from the home.

() Homes that are built on flood plains where the water table is high.

() Lawns that have a retaining wall built into a hillside that allow the water to pool next to the home.

How much do they cost to install?

Most drainage experts will charge for linear foot, depending on what type of system you need installed, how far they need to dig/excavate, etc. Costs can typically range from anywhere between $2,500 on the low end to over $10,000 on the high end. Is that worth it to you? That’s a question you have to ask yourself. When doing so, consider your home’s risk of flooding should groundwater get trapped next to your foundation. Another thing you must consider is the deductible you’ll have to pay if your home sustains flood damage.  Most people think they have a $1,000 deductible but are shocked to find out it’s either $2,500 or 1% of the home’s value. If you have a higher deductible, and you have a finished basement that is at risk of flooding, it may make a lot of financial sense to go ahead and bite the bullet and have french drains installed!

Flood or Water Damage In Your Home? Call the professionals at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby today. 502.241.6861

How To Detect Water Damage In An Old Home

6/7/2017 (Permalink)

Older homes. They can be magical, intriguing, and beautiful all at once. But however charming they may be, there is no doubt that many older homes are plagued with problems. Whether you live in one of these older homes or a more modern home, water damage is a constant threat. It can wreak pure havoc on a home. Unfortunately, it doesn’t take too long to incur water damage—just one storm or an extra-long shower will do the trick.

Sometimes the damage is like a sore thumb—it’s easy to spot. However, water damage often goes undetected, posing a risk to your home and family. This is especially important if you are moving into a new home or haven’t checked for water damage recently. Here are several ways to recognize the signs of water damage so you can be prepared to quickly respond if water damage in Kentucky comes your way.

  1. Water Stains. This red flag is an obvious sign of water damage. Look for these discolored stains where water is used the most. Sinks, toilets, refrigerators, washing machines, and dishwashers are all common locations of the telltale water damage stains. If one of these stains suddenly pops up, it’s time to get a professional on the job. If you are looking into purchasing a new home, be cautious. Inquire into the issue further and be prepared to discuss remediation options with the homeowner.
  2. Buckling Floors and Walls. This is another obvious sign that marks deep water damage. Wrinkled or warped floorboards signify that water has absorbed into the flooring and caused swelling. The same applies to walls. This can happen over an extended period of time for countless reasons. Even a neglected orange juice spill can manifest itself in the form of buckled floors and walls.
  3. Crumbling Wood. Keep an eye out for crumbling wood and drywall around windows, baseboards, and doorways. Any type of degradation could indicate that the wood is slowly falling apart because of water infiltration.
  4. Musty odors. Trust your nose on this one. Although water damage is often hidden below flooring and behind walls, your nose can do the work for you. Many old homes have an old, musty smell, but in rooms with water damage, the smell is much more prominent. If you are unsure if water damage has occurred, contact SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby to find out. 502.241.6861
  5. Leaking noises. Again, your senses are a powerful tool in detecting water damage. If you suspect a leak from your roof or a household appliance, simply listen closely for leaks and drips. This can help prevent serious problems in the future.
  6. Soggy drywall. Soggy drywall is one of the easy-to-spot signs of water damage in your home. Simple enough, right? If your walls are wet, you have water damage. Just be sure to take action immediately before more you have intensified hidden water damage on your plate.
  7. New paint. If you’re in the market for a new home, check for this subtle sign of damage. Some homeowners mistakenly try to paint over damaged areas of the house to hide water damage. If there is spotty paint on the walls in unusual places, don’t hesitate to ask why they painted those specific areas. It’s important to tread carefully when purchasing older homes.

Whether you are looking to confirm the safety of your house or buy a new home entirely, checking regularly for signs of water damage is a sure way to keep a safe, clean home. If you have any questions or concerns about the water damage remediation process, feel free to contact SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby. 502.241.6861

Trees & Water Damage

6/2/2017 (Permalink)

On the SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby water damage blog, we spend a good deal of time talking about common causes of water damage. While you can be sure we’ve discussed at length things like flooding from appliances, crawlspace flooding, and sewage line backups, one topic we’ve never discussed is the impact overgrown trees can have on home water damage. With that said, let’s take a few minutes to delve into the subject so that you understand the importance of making sure your property’s trees don’t present a risk to your home.

How trees can cause a roof leak & other water damage

There are a number of ways trees can cause problems to your home, but for the sake of this article we are just going to discuss their ability to cause water damage.  There are 3 primary causes of water damage as it relates to trees:

1 – Fallen limbs damage your roof

If you’re blessed to have a lot full of beautiful, mature trees, you know that with that beauty comes some sacrifices. And we’re not just talking about all of the leaves you have to rake each fall. Tall trees can often times have long, huge branches. If these branches are hanging over your roof, that could spell trouble. Whether due to tree rot or simply a big wind storm, should a branch fall it could end up puncturing your roofing membrane and decking. If it occurs during a heavy rain storm, it won’t take much time at all for your attic to flood and for water to begin dripping through your ceiling. At that point, you’ve got a serious water damage emergency and the potential for tens of thousands of dollars worth of damages.

2 – Limbs rubbing your roof shingles

This scenario is actually quite common. And while on the surface it might not seem like as big of a deal as the scenario we’ve laid out above, it can be quite devastating. Why? If a tree limb and its leaves are constantly rubbing your roof shingles, eventually it’s going to wear away those singles and cause enough damage to create a slow leak. Sadly, you may not notice the damages from that leak until long after mold growth has begun to form in your attic. That’s a disastrous scenario for a couple of reasons:

One, the obvious health risk implications. Two, the cost of fixing the problem can easily run into the tens of thousands of dollars. Three, your insurer might not pay for the fixes.

How is that possible? They’ve got a couple of outs in your policy. The first is a clause that states they do not protect against damages caused by homeowner negligence. If you were to file a claim, your adjuster will come out and see the branch clearly laying on your roof and inform you that should have been cut off long ago to prevent said damages from occurring. Secondly, your homeowners insurance policy does not protect against slow water leaks like this. That’s correct! It would take a sudden loss situation to enact your policy’s protections.

So what are you left with? A potentially massive bill you’ll have to pay entirely out of pocket! Does that sound like a nightmare? Then go outside right now and walk your home’s perimeter and see if there are any limbs at risk of causing this problem. If you can safely remove them, go ahead and do so. If not, hire a tree company to do it for you!

3 – Roots causing foundation cracks and settling

If you have trees that are close to your home’s foundation, they could cause foundation problems. In fact, they’re almost assuredly causing stress on your foundation as you read this. Over time, they can lead to cracks in your foundation walls. Whether you have a basement, pier and beam home with a crawlspace, or a slab foundation, these cracks can provide the perfect ‘highway’ for groundwater to travel through and cause home flooding.

Have you suffered water damage from tree problems?

If you have home water damage and you’ve perused our site at all, you know we always recommend you have a certified technician come out and assess the damage. It may be relatively minor or it may be a lot worse than you think. But chances are you aren’t going to get a full understanding of what is going on without someone inspecting the property with the right equipment. We would be happy to provide you with an onsite assessment. At a minimum, you will know what you are up against. At the time of the assessment, we will scope the damages and write up our mitigation plan (in other words, what we believe will need to be done to cleanup and dry the affected area) along with a cost estimate generated by Xactimate.

Water Damage In Your Home? Call SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby today at 502.241.6861

Black Water Damage

6/1/2017 (Permalink)

When floodwater contains multiple contaminants and viruses that present serious risks of illness, it is considered black water. Flooding is a major risk in many locations throughout the US and can bring about black water contamination. Several factors contribute to flooding, including snow thaw, storms and hurricanes, all of which can cause sewage backflows, as well as rising water from rivers, streams and seawater.

Remediating black water contamination in a building requires careful planning and utilization of specialized equipment. A licensed contractor will know how to assess the damages, sanitize and dry the affected areas. Steps to follow in the event of black water damage:

  1. 1. Ensure the safety of all building occupants and workers. Employees must wear protective equipment, such as gloves, boots, eye protection, waterproof coveralls and respirators.
  2. 2. The hired contractor conducts a thorough inspection of the affected areas to determine the severity of the damage. The restoration process depends on this assessment.
  3. 3. Excess water is rapidly removed to prevent further damages. Contaminated porous items, sewage and other wastes are also removed. Special tools such as air scrubbers or negative air machines may be used to prevent contamination in unaffected areas. Affected surfaces are cleaned and sanitized with EPA-approved disinfectants.
  4. 4. When sanitization is complete, the contractor establishes a balanced drying system to restore the damaged areas to their preloss condition. This final step involves the usage of specialized procedures, products and equipment, such as professional dehumidifiers and high capacity air movers.

For all property damage situations, including black water contamination, contact SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby. Our professionals will mitigate the loss and provide the latest industry standard services to restore your property from water, fire, smoke, mold and other damages.

Cleaning and Drying The Structure Versus Total Replacement

5/23/2017 (Permalink)

As regular blog readers know, many of our information articles discuss common questions or concerns that arise from customers that have suffered water damage. And in this article, we’re going to discuss one question: ‘Can you save my ___________ (insert structural area)?’ As with almost any question we get from a potential client, there is no clear cut answer. So much depends on the type of damage, the extent of the damage, and a number of other factors that have to be included. And only a full inspection of the property can give the professionals a full understanding of the facts surrounding your home water damage loss. So as promised, let’s discuss some of those factors to help you understand what factors go into deciding whether or not to clean and dry the existing structure versus replacing that area completely.

1 – What category of water damage occurred?

This is the most important question to answer because it plays a huge role in determining whether or not we’re even allowed to attempt the cleaning and drying process. Most notably, if your home or contents within your home were damaged by sewer water or any other category 3 water loss, there’s virtually no chance we can safely clean those items in place. If they’re porous, the contaminants will be too deeply seeded into the structure and it will require us to completely remove and replace the areas/items.  That means carpets, wood floors, walls, couches, boxes, cabinets, etc. all must be thrown out and safely disposed of. If you call a sewage cleanup company and they tell you otherwise, they either don’t know what they’re doing or they are intentionally putting the health of your family at risk. Either way, politely thank them, hang up, and call us.

2 – What is the cost benefit analysis?

Most of the jobs we do are covered by insurers. As you can probably imagine, their biggest concern is how to ensure they pay the least amount of money possible on your claim. What that means for the water damage company you end up hiring is that they have to take whatever measures are the most cost-effective when restoring your loss. So the cost benefit analysis has to be done this way: is it cheaper to clean and dry the area or is it cheaper to replace the area? Assuming you’re filing an insurance claim, the answer to this question is going to go a long way in determining what approach the water mitigation company will take.

3 – How long has the area been affected by water damage?

While most surfaces can be restored if they are treated immediately after the area sustained water damage, very few can be salvaged if the water damage has sat for a considerably amount of time. While there is no hard and fast rule in terms of the amount of time that makes a restoration job nearly impossible, the chances of saving the existing areas increases dramatically if we are able to begin the restoration process within 24 hours of the loss occurring. In some cases, a homeowner will arrive home from a long trip to a flooded basement or other area but they have no idea when the actual flooding occurred. That’s why it’s important to immediately call a certified restoration company to assess the loss. Once on the property, we can give you a better sense for the moisture levels present in the surfaces and provide our feedback in terms of what makes the most sense moving forward.

Allow us to provide you with a free onsite assessment!

While there are certainly a number of other factors that go into answering the question of can we save your existing structure, these are the 3 biggest factors we’ll consider when making that judgment. Of course, the only way to know for sure is to give us a call and allow one of our certified water damage restoration technicians to fully diagnose your loss and assess the extent of damage. Once we’ve completed our free onsite assessment, we can provide you with a detailed mitigation plan. 

Water Damage In Your Home? Call SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby to speak to a Mitigation Specialist today. 502.241.6861

Common Moisture Problems That Can Lead To Mold

5/17/2017 (Permalink)

Why does mold grow?

 

Any discussion about mold cleanup should start with understanding why mold begins to grow in the first place. Customers with a mold damage problem are always surprised to learn that toxic mold spores are present not just in their home, but every home, and in fact almost every environment. It’s a naturally occurring element and in low levels is completely safe to humans and pets and your home in general. So when does it become a problem? When too much moisture is introduced in the organic surfaces mold feeds on to grow. Things like drywall, insulation, wood, cabinets, etc. become mold’s food source when mixed with water and the right temperature. While there are many strains of toxic mold, most thrive in temperatures ranging from 60-80 degrees Fahrenheit. If you’ll notice, the average temperature in home’s ideal to our own comfort sits squarely within that range. So when it comes to mold growth, 2 things are always present: the right temperature and food. It’s when you introduce that 3rd element, water, that problems can quickly grow out of hand!

 

Most common moisture problems that lead to mold

 

If your home suffered a massive water damage event, you’re obviously going to know about it and hopefully you’re going to hire a competent water damage restoration company to fix it (hint hint, that’s us!). So the likelihood of that event unleashing a chain reaction that leads to a big mold problem is small assuming you have the moisture removed quickly. The real big mold jobs we see are from much smaller, long-term moisture problems that just never went diagnosed. Below are some of the most common persistent water damage problems we see that can result in a massive amount of black mold damage.

 

Leaks under sinks

Whether it’s from a supply line with a loose connection or a drain pipe that has a small hole, slow leaks under seats (or any other sink for that matter) can go unnoticed for some time because your cabinets can hide the problem. It’s always a good idea to check under your sink cabinets to look for any signs of moisture or musty odors. If you detect a problem, it may be a good idea to have a professional come out and inspect things further. In some cases the problem is isolated and will be something you can handle on your own. But in some cases, the visible signs are only the tip of the iceberg. You’d be shocked what we have seen on and in walls and under flooring after pulling out cabinets!

 

Small roof leaks

In some instances, the symptoms of a significant roof leak are discovered pretty quickly. Usually you see discoloration in the top floor’s ceiling or worse, it collapses entirely. But in other cases when you have a very small leak, the problem can go undetected for quite some time and never result in water damage you can see from inside the home. It’s usually discovered when someone goes up into the attic for some unrelated reason and sees the problem: mold growth everywhere. On the roof decking, insulation, support beams, you name it. At that point, you’ve got an expensive problem on your hands and your insurance company likely isn’t going to pay for the damages.

The best way to prevent this particular mold problem from occurring is to perform both an exterior as well as interior inspection at least once a year. For the exterior, actually walk the roof of your home (if it’s safe) to look for damaged or missing shingles. Replacing them is easy! For the inside, climb up to your attic and inspect the roof decking for signs of water intrusion.

 

Pipe leaks inside walls

A lot of times we are called to a home to do a mold inspection because a homeowner noticed a small patch of mold growing on the floor next to a wall. When we dig further, we usually discover there is a plumbing pipe housed in that wall that is slowly leaking and depositing water on the floor inside the wall cavity. Once we start to remove the drywall, often times we discover the problem is much larger than just the small visible spot on the floor. Usually the mold has traveled throughout the wall cavity and inside the subfloor. The damage can be extensive and the costs high.

You obviously can’t go tearing out sections of your walls often to figure out if you have a problem, so what can you do? The main thing you should be doing is watching your water bill. If you notice a spike and can’t determine a cause for that spike, you may have an undetected leak. At that point, you may want to hire a leak detection company to come out and perform an inspection to determine if you have a bigger problem you need to deal with. They’re better equipped at finding the problem, at which point we would come in and remove the excess moisture and black mold as well as repair any surfaces or structures that were torn out during the process!

Mold In Your Home? Call SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby at 502.241.6861

Can My Carpet and Pad be Saved After a Flood

5/16/2017 (Permalink)

After a flood, many homeowners and property managers wonder if their carpet and pad can be saved.  The answer is, it depends.  Factors such as the age and quality of the carpet and pad, as well as the type of installation used, have to be taken into consideration. However, the type of floodwater that caused the damage is most important when determining whether or not carpet and padding can be salvaged.

There are 3 floodwater categories that determine whether the carpet and padding can be restored to their pre-disaster condition:

  • Category 1 (clean water): non-contaminated water that may come from a broken pipe, sink, etc. After the water has been extracted, carpets and pads can be dried and restored in place.
  • Category 2 (gray water): dirty water that has been released by sump pumps, washing machines, dishwashers, etc. The carpet can usually be restored if it has been wet for less than 48 hours. The pad is replaced in most cases.
  • Category 3 (black water): water containing dangerous contaminants that may originate from sewage and toilet backflows as well as from floods caused by natural disasters. To protect your family’s health, carpets and pads should be removed, discarded and replaced.

Since every water damage situation is different, you cannot know for sure if or when your carpet and pad can be salvaged until you have a professional restoration company inspect the situation.

The faster you report the disaster, the lower the costs will be. If you’re dealing with a flooding problem, contact  SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby to speak to a Mitigation Specialist today. 502.241.6861

What Is Required For Water Damage Restoration

5/3/2017 (Permalink)

The following is provided by the IICRC. 

Companies that perform water damage restoration have to be skilled in a number of areas to stay current in their field. Technicians in the industry have to combat a number of threats, some visible and some invisible, before their job is done. Structural weakening, chemical runoff, electrical hazards, dangerous wildlife, and deadly microbes are all common risks technicians have to contend with. Without the proper education and equipment, a technician risks grave injury and may leave health risks behind for a family to encounter. Fortunately, technicians in the industry have access to the educational resources offered by the Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification, or IICRC.

After getting certified in water damage restoration and a number of related fields, a professional in the field will be able to identify and neutralize any problems they are likely to face at a job site. In most cases, a technician is called to a home following a flood or plumbing disaster. In either case, the initial threat a technician has to encounter is hazardous standing liquid. Floods and sewage backups are normally host to dangerous chemicals, like oil runoff, bacteria and viruses. Before any repairs can be done on the home, a technician will need to be outfitted with the proper safety wear and begin investigating where the liquid is pooling. Moisture meters can detect the level of moisture in and behind drywall, carpet, and other areas. Using minimally-invasive tools, a technician can quickly find pockets of heavy moisture in areas not readily accessible.

This is important because only thorough drying will ensure that further destruction does not occur. Most companies use a combination of industrial  air movers and dehumidifiers to extract moisture from both materials and the air. This process can take some time, but diagnostic tools like moisture meters help technicians monitor the drying process. Once all of the materials inside the home have reached safe levels, mold and other microbial growth can be halted.

The most severe threats a water damage restoration company has to deal with are molds and other pathogens. These  contaminants can remain a major hazard for years after they have taken root, and can cause insidious health problems while remaining hidden in vents or behind walls. Trained technicians are capable of neutralizing molds and other pathogens by utilizing special  cleaning products and quickly removing compromised materials. Being able to identify mold growth is an important skill for a professional, and stemming the growth of a colony can be the difference between saving a home and having to condemn it. Certified firms are capable of quickly working through a property and disposing of anything that is beyond repair. Anything that is salvageable but soaked is separated, cleaned properly, and promptly dried. If the building’s structural integrity has been affected, these technicians can identify it and alert the homeowner and the insurance representative to its presence.

Without professional help, a homeowner will never know for sure that their home is safe to live in again. This is why the help of a certified technician is so valuable. They don’t just repair homes, they restore normalcy.

Time is of the essence after a major water disaster. Though Journeyman-certified technicians may be the right choice for water damage that does not threaten structural integrity, it is vital to bring an IICRC certified Master professional to the scene of a major disaster as soon as possible. Certified professionals use the skills they’ve learned in the accreditation courses to examine the structure, textiles, and the belongings, and will likely be able to control the damage, so no further damage will occur.

Furthermore, knowing the fastest and best means of drying the structure and textiles is imperative. Familiarity with the most effective processes and safest compounds to stop the spread of molds and microbes is also needed to protect people and animals in the environment. Graduates of the relevant IICRC-approved classes excel in these areas.

The importance of providing customer satisfaction cannot be over-emphasized. Each  certified technician  must pass a stringent series of exams prior to acceptance, and continual training is required. Complaints are taken seriously and must be handled promptly to ensure continued accreditation as a certified firm.

Water damage restoration technician training is a surefire way to  insure the latest and greatest procedures are used to protect a customer’s property. There are various courses of study and ways to learn the information, so IICRC works with both the consumer and the professional to guarantee the best experience.

All of SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County restoration technicians are IICRC trained.  

 

Ground Water Leaks

5/2/2017 (Permalink)

Groundwater leaks are the problem that basement contractors encounter most commonly. As groundwater pressures build in a basement, they can add a special type of pressure- known as hydrostatic pressure- against foundation walls in a basement or crawl space.


This water will enter the basement or crawl space through any opening it can find, including any gaps or cracks along the foundation walls. While basement flooding is most common through the joint where the foundation wall meets the floor, it's also common for water to leak in through cracks, around pipes leading out of the home, around windows, and through the basement floor. Each of these problems is unique- below are many of the most common sources of groundwater leakage.


Basement Wall Cracks
A crack in the basement wall is leaking, allowing water to flood into the home. They can also be a potential indicate of a foundation issue, especially if the cracks are not vertical. Whether horizontal, diagonal, or vertical, this is a major potential problem that should be looked at right away.


Pipe Penetration Leak


A gap around a pipe that penetrates through the basement wall is allowing water to run from the earth outside into the home. If not a pipe, it could also be a cable or electrical wire, a sewage line, or some other opening. These lines can be much more challenging to seal than a typical wall crack, and because they expand and shrink with temperature, seals can easily work loose.


Basement Leaks on the floor or at the Wall/Floor Joint


Water is seeping upwards from cracks running along the floor, or it's leaking in from the corners of the floor, where the basement walls and floors meet. Often, water will also leak through the walls, especially in cases where field stone walls are present. In the case of block walls, the cavities in the blocks will fill with water, which will then seep through the bottom of the walls.


 


Leaking Basement Windows
Water is coming in around your windows and leaking down to the basement floor. This is sometimes made worse by window wells that are filling with water, snow, and debris. Basement window leaks are often also caused or intensified by rotting or rusting window frames, which is common with steel and wood framed basement windows.


Water Leak in your basement? Call the professionals at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby today to speak to a Mitigation Specialist. 502.241.6861

Commercial Upholstery and Carpet Cleaning

4/25/2017 (Permalink)

The Following Information is provided by the IICRC.

Unknown to most commercial end users is the fact that commercial upholstery, unlike residential, experiences a lot more daily soiling, wear and tear. Commercial upholstery should be cleaned at least annually by a professional cleaning service that knows how to remove maximum soil, perhaps semi-annually in heavy use situations. The increased use life of the upholstery and the savings in productivity will pay for the cost of cleaning.

Need a Commercial carpet cleaning in for your business? Trust the Professionals at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County professionals have the training and experience to clean your carpet and upholstery to the highest standards. Call us to today to schedule an appointment. 502.241.6861 

Different Kinds Of Water Damages

4/24/2017 (Permalink)

Different Kinds of Water Damages

Category one water damages:

Category one damages are considered to be safe. They pose no danger to you or the people around you, and will not harm your body or trigger allergies. This kind of water most likely contains no harmful bacteria or pathogens, and as a result is harmless. This kind of damage can most likely come from a leaking washing machine or an overflowing sink.

Category two water damages:

If the water damage in question is coming from an overflowing toilet, it may be that you are suffering a category two water damage. This water will be unclean and grey, and usually contains harmful agents such as bacteria. If this water is consumed, the person may become sick or it may trigger certain allergic reactions. The most important thing when it comes to category two water damages is to ensure that all the water is removed at once, so it causes as little damage as possible.

Category three water damages:

This is the kind of water damage that is considered the most unsanitary. The water will be murky and dark, and will be extremely unsafe for anyone exposed to it. The water in this case contains many harmful bacteria, viruses, and other pathogenic agents, making it one of the most dangerous kinds of water. In some cases, a category two water damage can become a category three damage, if it is not dealt with immediately. Remember not to try and work on a solution for this on your own, and call up a professional water damages team.

The different classes of water damages:

As with categories, water damages are also differentiated into classes, based mostly on how quickly the water evaporates and which materials in the home are going to affect that.

Class 1 water damage means that the water evaporation is very slow. This implies that the room area is small, and materials are not heavily saturated with water. Class two water damages mean that the water is evaporating fast. This usually implies that most of the room is being affected and that the materials are heavily saturated with water. Class three damages imply that the evaporation is rapid and the whole room is soaked with water. Class 4 damages imply that the water has spread even to difficult areas, requiring specific equipment.

Once you’ve identified the kind of water damage it is important to call in a restoration company at once. They will have a full knowledge of the classes and categories, and will guide you on how best to restore your home based on all of that knowledge.

How to Choose Water Damage Restoration Services

4/19/2017 (Permalink)

 

Posted by: Kandi Newnes on 4/19/2017

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County

502.241.6861

The following is provided by the Institute of Certified Inspection Cleaning and Restoration. 

When a storm leaves a home flooded, or a burst pipe causes serious issues in the house, getting water damage restoration services from a respected company should be considered a top priority. Unfortunately, this industry is not regulated, and there are people out there who pose as professionals or overstate their qualifications. Therefore, homeowners should be mindful of who they hire, as an untrained technician may do more harm than good or delay repairs, resulting in a higher degree of destruction. Before selecting a company to handle the job, keep in mind these points of emphasis:

  • Only choose certified professionals to perform water damage restoration services. Even though the industry is not regulated, technicians who have received certification have made the effort to get the best training possible, proving that they take their job seriously. Certification through the Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) is a sign that a professional has received the most up to date training and is knowledgeable in the latest techniques and technologies employed during repairs. The IICRC operates a Certified Firm registrant-only database on its site, making it easy to find a local, certified professional without trouble.
  • Do not select a technician based only on the price or an insurance company’s recommendation. When possible, speak to neighbors or friends who have had to hire a technician recently and try to get a recommendation from them. Insurance companies often select a restoration company based on price, and unusually low pricing suggests the company does not use modern drying or repair methods.
  • Choose a company that offers a range of water damage restoration services. The easiest way to determine the expertise of a firm is to see if they provide a full range of options for homeowners. Mold remediation, for example, is often needed given how quickly mold can set in. This is a standard field of knowledge that advanced technicians should possess. If a company doesn’t offer mold remediation, it may not be prepared for all job settings.
  • A company that is available 24/7 is a good sign. Stay away from any firms that are reluctant to start right away. In many cases modern equipment can enable near-complete drying in as little as 36 hours,  although many situations require longer. Also, a homeowner should not have to wait before repairs begin. Every minute counts when there is standing water present, and reputable professionals understand this. If a technician insists on waiting to begin the  remediation portion of the loss, they probably cannot be trusted to see the job through in a reasonable time frame.

Using these guidelines, a homeowner should be able to find a technician that can be trusted and is equipped to do the job the right way. A storm or other disaster is hard enough to deal with, and a remediation firm should do everything in its power to make this difficult process easier.

Common Causes Of Water Damage- Pipes & Plumbing

4/18/2017 (Permalink)

Common Causes of Water Damage 

Today, we would like to bring to light a very common culprit of water damage: Pipes & Plumbing.

There is a lot of plumbing throughout your home! The most common problems occur at or near fixtures such as sinks, toilets, and tubs. Causes of pipe damage include:

–          Weather: Pipes can leak, sweat, or freeze, making it hard to prevent problems from occurring.

–          Nature: Roots can grow around and damage underground pipes.

–          Drainage: Clogged or blocked drains in sinks or toilets can cause undue pressure in the pipes, leading to leaks or bursts.

  • Garbage Disposals that are not working to their full capacity, or are being misused, can cause an excess of damaging gunk in the lines.

Unfortunately, these problems can happen very quickly, and cause a lot of damage in the process. Properly maintain your plumbing system for a decreased chance of these problems. Early action can prevent thousands of dollars’ worth of damage down the line.

Water Damage In Your Home Due to leaking Pipes or Plumbing? Call the professionals at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby County to speak to a Mitigation Specialist today. 502.241.6861

Is Water Damage Restoration Covered By Insurance?

4/14/2017 (Permalink)

There can be no worse nightmare than coming home from vacation and finding the dining room flooded. Your furniture, wallpaper, carpet— and mental health— are under siege, stained or green with mold. You wonder ” Will my insurance help with water damage restoration?”.

After you call United Water Restoration for help, your next thought is insurance coverage. Will you be reimbursed for this? Unfortunately, the answer is complicated and depends on your policy. Insurance policies vary from one company to the next. A general rule of thumb is that you need flood insurance in addition to your homeowner’s policy.  Most homeowner’s policies treat flood insurance separately.

Moreover, even if the homeowner has flood insurance, it tends to be fairly specific (or nitpicking, if you prefer that word).

It may cover only water that comes from another source and enters the home, not water originating in the home.

Overflowing rivers and heavy rains are considered floods. A broken water pipe, however, may not qualify.

Flood Insurance Policies: Read Fine Print

Even insurance policies that cover water damage (but not floods) may just apply to situations where water somehow damaged the home without touching the ground around it. With this type of insurance, a leaking roof or broken pipe might qualify, but not a tidal wave or hurricane.

Mold is another complicated subject. If mold was caused by neglect, for instance, it’s not likely to be covered. If mold occurred because of a burst pipe or an event within the scope of coverage, mold clean up could be covered.

Mold, fortunately, does not spring up immediately (though it may seem that way). At SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby, we take steps to make sure that mold doesn’t get started.

Immediate clean-up and restoration are needed to prevent the growth of mold. Our services attack the source of mold, which is moisture or standing water. When you call SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby, we take measures to prevent the growth of mold so it doesn’t become an issue with your insurance company.

Water Damage Worsens With Time

Your first SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby, to schedule a consultation and learn what will be needed to set things right again, is a priority. Damage and deterioration start immediately after water enters the home, impacting not just the structural integrity of your home, but also plumbing, electrical, furnishings and contents. The sooner you get the water and moisture removed and begin the drying-out project, the better you contain the damage.

When you call your insurance agent, he or she can explain what your coverage includes. It’s best to understand your policy before you experience any calamity. The last thing you need— on top of water damage— is a battle with the insurance company.

The bottom line is: Policies vary. If you live in a flood-prone, or a place where storms are frequent, you’d be wise to check out the price of flood insurance. Don’t be afraid to ask questions. The insurance agent should be able to state your liability as well as your coverage when you purchase the policy. Ask him or her to define plain-sounding terms such as flood, water damage or neglect. You might be surprised at the answers.

After all, what is insurance designed to do, but insure your peace of mind?

Water or Fire Damage in your home? Call the professionals at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby today to speak to a Mitigation Specialist. 502.241.6861

Damage A Shower Head Can Cause

4/13/2017 (Permalink)

Damage a Broken Shower Head Can Cause!


Let’s face it, most of us are a little oblivious to broken things in our home, either because we just don’t have the time to fix it or have it fixed by someone else.  Its just too much of a hassle.  Often times we can have a broken shower head and we ignore the water spouting out in different directions and not realizing the damage that a broken shower head can cause.  Over time water accumulation on drywall, tile, and wood can be not only hazardous to your health but also can be a real headache.  Any leak in your home, can most likely cause an accumulation of mold and mildew, and if the water damage is severe enough, it can spread mold spores in the air, where you and your loved ones can become ill as a result.  Sometimes a malfunctioning shower head can cause water to spout in all different directions and if your shower is not completely enclosed, the water can hit the ceiling or walls.  Most of us might think that all bathrooms, by common sense are built with water resistant materials, but sometimes that is not the case.  Some bathrooms may be built with just standard drywall and therefore be susceptible to water damage or mold damage.  It may be hard to believe, but accumulated water on your bathroom floor tiles can cause mold to grow, the mold can then slowly eat away at the grout and with time also eat away at the adhesive holding the tile in place and eventually cause the tile to come lose or crack. These are some of the more extreme examples of what a broken shower head can do to your bathroom walls and tile, it may be enough reason to replace your broken shower head and save some money in the long run.


 


Replacing your shower head:



  1. Remove the old shower head using a wrench or pliers.  Begin by loosening the nut that connects the shower head with  pliers or wrench.

  2. Clean off the threads of the shower arm and make sure the threads are clean of any debris, if the connection is damaged, you may need to replace the shower arm as well.

  3. Wrap plumbers tape around the thread of the shower arm, making sure that the tape is wrapped around tight.

  4. Install the new shower head using your hands , wrap a cloth around the connection and tighten with a wrench to ensure a tight connection.

  5. Run the shower for about a minute to test and make sure there are no leaks.


Water Damage in Your Home Due to Broken Shower Head? Call the professionals at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby today to speak to a Mitigation Specialist. 502.241.6861


Condo Association and Insurance. Who Covers You?

4/10/2017 (Permalink)

Before filing an insurance claim, condo owners must determine who is liable for water damage.  Determining who is responsible or liable for condo water damage can be pretty tricky, and is dependent upon the cause of the damage. A Condo Association maintains insurance to cover common areas in the complex, and individual condo insurance policies cover the interiors of individual units, such as walls and floors.


When a water damage occurs in a condo, it does not matter where the water came from.  Keep in mind that each unit owner is responsible for their own unit.  The HOA is also responsible for the repairs and dry out or clean up.  Before filing an insurance claim, condo owners should contact a restoration company to perform an assessment.  A professional restoration company will be able to assist the homeowner and the association to coordinate the clean up and repairs.  Condo owners should also review their individual condo coverage and determine what is covered by whom.  If the water damage was caused by a pipe that burst in the kitchen, the claim will most likely be covered by your own individual insurance.  If the water damage was caused by another unit, that will be a little tricky.  This is why its very important for every condo owner to be informed of their condo association’s master policy and their personal condo coverage, inside out!


Toxic mold growth can start within 48 hours of the water damage, if you notice any water damage, either coming from your unit or another unit, notify us SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby and your condo association and inform them of what is going on.  When dealing with the condo association, be persistent and make sure you receive an immediate response, especially if the water damage has made your unit uninhabitable.


 502.241.6861

Flood Proof Your Basement This Spring

4/6/2017 (Permalink)

Flood Proof Your Basement This Spring
Basement flood proofing is an essential criteria for any home with a basement. Although flooding mostly occurs because of heavy rains or other natural disasters, it is also possible to have the basement flooded due to other reasons. This is because the basement is one of those places in your home always inherently prone to flooding, as it is the only place built below the ground level.


Causes of Basement Floods


It should always be kept in mind that gravity moves water from above to below. If groundwater or sewer water that is around the house is above the basement floor, even a single crack within your basement floor foundation can make water move into the basement creating a perfect passage for the water to flow inside.


Another reason for excess moisture presence in the basement may be due to the climate of the region. Moisture may also accumulate in basements as a result of not enough gutters installed in the house, improperly installed downspouts, or when proper landscaping isn’t done on the property.


A flood in the basement can make the extent of water damage to the property a potentially serious problem. Apart from the physical damage to property, your health can be affected by mold growth, and a depreciation in property values can happen as a result of recurrent flooding.


Some of the most common reasons causing basements to flood include:



  • Heavy rainfalls

  • Leaks or cracks within basement walls

  • Poor lot drainage system

  • Failure in weeping tiles

  • Overflowing of sewer tanks

  • Blockage in the pipes connecting to the main sewer system

  • Failure in the sump pump

  • Natural flooding


 


A number of non-weather related reasons for basement flooding may include the flow or seepage of water through the foundation floor or the walls, from surface water sources or even through a sanitary or storm sewer.


Basement Flood Proofing Techniques


Basement flood proofing involves different kinds of techniques that help in preventing water from getting inside the basement, and an effective way to do most of this waterproofing includes sealers as well as the drainage. A wet basement may suffer from foundation cracks, seepage or other water problems.


To prevent this from happening, there are three different ways to stop water from entering the basement.



  1. Drainage of interior water: Even though preventing interior water drainage isn’t technically proper waterproofing, it still is a widely used technique to help move the water away from the interior or the basement. This is usually done with the help of sump pumps or different kinds of water coating techniques.

  2. Drainage of exterior water as well as waterproofing coatings: Exterior waterproofing techniques help in preventing water from entering the wall foundations. This practice prevents wicking or molding within the building materials.

  3. Seal vulnerable areas of the basement and walls: There is a lot of chance that if the floor of your basement has cracks in its foundation or within the pipes that are the most common entry point to the seepage, you might have a water problem within your basement. To prevent such basement water damage, it is highly recommended to seal off the leaking areas of the pipe and cracks in the basement foundations.


 


By taking steps early and enacting basement flood proofing techniques, you can avoid most causes of flooding and also reduce the amount of damage that occurs in the event of an emergency.


Water in Your Basement? Contact SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby/Trimble/Henry/Spencer/Carroll to speak to a Mitigation Specialist. 502.241.6861


How to Test A Sump Pump

4/3/2017 (Permalink)

How to Test a Sump Pump

Sump pumps are important to keep your home safe from water damage. During a flood or heavy rainfall, sump pumps remove excess water around the foundation of your home, transporting it away from your home’s perimeter. Properly maintaining and testing your sump pump ensures that it does its job when needed in order to prevent potentially expensive water damage. Testing your sump pump takes only a few minutes and doesn’t require special skills. Here’s how to test a sump pump:

  • Locate the exit pipe that drains out water from the pump outside your home. Inspect the pipe and make sure it’s not clogged with dirt or debris. Also, make sure it directs water away from your home’s foundation.
  • Go to your sump pump, which is usually installed in the basement or crawlspace, near the walls of the foundation. Remove the lid (if it has one) and remove any debris you find to ensure the pump will not clog.
  • The first way to test the sump pump is to trace the two electrical cords of the sump pump. The pump cord plugs into the back of the float cord plug. Unplug both cords, then plug only the pump cord into the outlet. The pump should turn on immediately. If you hear a humming sound, the pump works. Plug the two cords back as they were (the float cord first, then the pump cord into the back of float plug). Not all sump pumps have two cords, and if yours doesn’t, use the methods below.
    • Pour approximately 5 gallons of water into the pump pit at a slow pace until you see the float rise. At this point, the pump should kick on. Make sure to watch as the water gets pumped out and the pump turns itself off when it pumped all the water. Repeat the test to ensure the pump works.
    • If pouring water into the sump pump is not an option, lift the float with your hand and check that the pump turns on. However, don’t let the pump run for more than a few seconds to prevent damage to the pump motor.

If these methods of testing your sump pump don’t work, have it serviced immediately. Test your sump pump twice a year, before the spring and fall seasons. For professional fire, water, and mold restoration services, contact your SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby/Trimble/Henry/Carroll at 502.241.6861.

7 Key Tips to Keep Water Out of Your Basement

3/30/2017 (Permalink)

7 Key Tips to Keep Water Out of Your Basement
 

Water entering your basement due to drainage problems, flash floods, appliance failures or other reasons can cause severe damage to your home. Here’s what you can do to stop water from accumulating into your basement:

1. Clean rain gutters. Blocked gutters may cause roof water to pour directly into your home’s foundation, increasing the risk of basement flooding. Remove any debris, such as leaves or branches from the gutters and check the gutters for loose particles if you have asphalt roofing. Tighten any loose gutter straps and spout extensions. If there is gunk in the downspouts, clean them by pouring water into the downspouts with a garden hose.

2. Extend downspouts. To protect your basement from excess water, downspouts should extend at least five feet away from your house. This can be achieved by adding plastic or metal extensions to the downspouts. Alternatively, consider having an underground drain pipe installed. This system can send gutter run-off away from your house.

3. Slope the ground away from your foundation. Make sure that the ground next to your foundation slopes away from the foundation to divert rainwater away from your home. The “crown” of dirt around your house should slope at least six inches over the first 10 feet in all directions.

4. Seal gaps in the basement. Water may leak into your basement through gaps or cracks around plumbing pipes or cracks in concrete walls. Seal these gaps with polyurethane caulk or hydraulic cement. However, if water comes through the floor, sealing gaps won’t do the trick and you need to fix the groundwater problem.

5. Install a French drain. For serious water problems, install a curtain drain such as a French drain. This type of drainage system consists of a series of underground pipes that diverts water away from your home’s foundation.

6. Waterproof interior basement walls. Condensation that forms on basement walls may be prevented by applying sealant on the walls. You can waterproof basement walls with concrete coatings, silicate-based concrete sealers, waterproofing paint or plastic sheets or panels. Alternatively, waterproof exterior walls of the basement to fix gaps in the foundation, although it’s a costly job that requires excavating around the house.

7. Install a sump pump. These devices provide protection against flooding by pumping out water that has accumulated in the sump basin. When the water level in the basement floor rises, the sump pump will automatically discharge the water outside your house.

In case your basement has flooded, call a water damage contractor immediately. To avoid safety hazards, don’t enter the basement and make sure to not make direct contact with floodwater. For flood water damage repair and mold remediation service, contact SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby/Trimble/Henry/Spencer/Carroll at 502.241.6861.

How to Spot A Good Water Restoration Company

3/28/2017 (Permalink)

How to Spot a Good Water Damage Restoration Company


Water damage restoration companies provide an incredibly crucial role at a time when many of us will need it most. Water damage can be extensive and permanent and left unchecked and for that reason it’s crucial that you’re able to respond quickly with a company that will act efficiently to help salvage the situation as much as possible while minimizing the damage to your belongings.


When it comes down to it though and you’re watching a burst pipe fire water across your living room, this is not the time to start browsing the web and reading customer reviews. Instead, you need to act quickly with a number ready-loaded in your phone and you need to be able to rely on that company to do what’s best for your home.


So now is the time to find a water damage restoration company and to keep a note of their phone number. The only question is: how do you tell a good company from a bad one? Read on and we’ll look at how you can make this distinction and hopefully save your home from extensive damage…


What You Need


Note that when you’re looking for a water damage restoration company, you need to make sure that you find one that offers 24/7 emergency services. This is something that many people won’t realize but the point is that a burst pipe or a flood is an emergency. The longer your home goes without being seen to by professionals in these cases, the more extensive the damage will be and the more of your belongings you’ll ultimately need to throw out.


This also means that a company should be local – if the company is not based in your area, then they’ll take longer to reach you and more damage will be done by the time they get there.


The Basics


The basics of finding a good water damage restoration company are the same as the basics of finding any company that you can trust in. For instance then, you need to make sure that the company has good customer reviews and that they have a good website. Water damage restoration is a highly skilled process and you need to ensure that only consummate a professional water damage restoration company that will be working on your home. So take a look online and read and compare the reviews that the companies each have written about them. If you find that the companies are constantly getting negative feedback then you could consider this a negative sign. Then again though, you should also be a little wary of companies that have 100% racing reviews – ask yourself whether or not they sound like they may have been paid for…


You can similarly get an idea about a company’s professionalism by looking at its website. Does the website look like they hired a professional to handle it? Is it well written, well designed and generally well put together? If the answer is no and it looks like one of those Geocities sites from the 90s, you should probably consider looking elsewhere.


Of course you also need to compare the prices that each of the companies are able to provide the work for. Again, it is not so simple a matter as ‘the cheapest is best’ as sometimes you will get what you pay for. Consider the quality of the website and the reviews and compare this against the price in order to get an idea of which company offers the best value for the price they’re asking. Of course you may be limited by your budget, in which case some of this will be answered for you before you even begin!


The Services


 


The other big thing you need to consider is which services specifically the water damage restoration company is offering. The point here is that some companies offer a lot more than others and you need to find one that provides all the things you need.


Ideally, the more different services and jobs your company can perform, the better suited they will be to helping you with your restoration.


The ideal situation is that once you’ve called the water damage restoration company, they will arrive, immediately stop the leak and then go about repairing your home to the point where it’s entirely back to normal. They should even be able to provide you with basic home renovation services then because this is what will allow them to rebuild your home to be as good as new – or better.


A large number of different skills are also necessary simply in order to ensure that your home is restored to its fullest and to make it livable again.


For instance: does the water damage restoration company provide sanitization services? Because if not, your home is going to be unhygienic to live in and you may get ill simply by staying there.


Likewise, do they offer mold remediation? If not, then you may move back in only to find that you have toxic black mold that begins to build up and make your home smell musky.


Your water damage company should even be able to help remove your belongings for you like a removal company. This way, they can protect your items from getting damaged further and what’s more, they can create enough space for them to work in. This includes removing carpets which have absorbed lots of contaminated water, so that they can then install new ones for you afterward.


In short, a water damage restoration company needs to have a lot of different skills in order to do a basic job for you. When comparing different companies, make sure that you compare all the services that they offer and that you read through the process they go through when they arrive at the premises. If you’re still unsure of what they can and can’t do, then give them a call and ask in person. This will also give you a good chance to get to know how their handle their customer service.


Water Damage in your home? Contact SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby at 502.241.6861 to speak to a Mitigation Specialist. 


 

Tips for Preventing Air Conditioning Water Damage

3/27/2017 (Permalink)

Most homeowners who enjoy cool and comfortable temperatures indoors throughout summer thanks to their air conditioning system don't realize that air conditioners can sometimes cause water damage if not properly maintained. When working at peak efficiency, an air conditioning system can collect 10 to 20 gallons of water daily. Ideally, this water drains off of the condensation coil into a collection pan and then is disposed of automatically into the sewer system. But if the drain becomes clogged and the unit produces more water than it can easily handle, the overflow of water can lead to damaged floors and carpeting in addition to creating unhealthy deposits of mold.

A clogged drain line is often the major source of creating water damage, but other causes include excessive condensation that occurs when the unit is running round the clock in addition to evaporator coils that may freeze up and then defrost on a regular basis. Because most of the unit is typically hidden from view, unless regular inspections take place, water damage can be occurring on a daily basis and accumulating into hundreds of dollars worth of damage.

 
One of the best ways to avoid air conditioner water damage is to change the HVAC air filter at least once a month. This also gives a homeowner the opportunity to observe whether or not there is excessive moisture collecting on the condensation line. Ensuring that an AC unit has clean air filters also helps prevent the unit from overworking, a situation that causes freezing and then defrosting on the evaporator coils, leading to water damage. It's also important to regularly check to see that water is indeed flowing from the opening of the condensation line directly to the drain as it was designed to do, especially during periods of very high humidity in the atmosphere.
 
When installing an AC condensation line, avoid using elbow connections if possible and have the line run in as straight an up and down direction as possible to facilitate water removal from the unit. It's a good idea to get a professional air conditioning repair service to clean the condensation line at least once a year or every six months if the AC system is used on a year-round basis. A professional plumbing service can also install a condensation pump to help ensure the free flow of excess water into the proper disposal drain. A repair technician may recommend installing a device known as a safety float switch which will automatically shut down the power to an AC unit whenever condensation builds up and there is a danger of water overflow.
 
Professional maintenance of your HVAC unit on an annual basis can also help to prevent water damage from occurring by checking the air filter, the condition of the condensation line as well as the drains to eliminate any blockage or other problems. Ask about having your air conditioner service technician apply an algaecide to your system to discourage build-up of debris in the drain lines in addition to preventing the growth of mold and mildew which can spread throughout the HVAC and pollute the air throughout the house.
 
Water Damage in your home? Call the professionals at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby/Trimble/Henry/Spencer/Carroll at 502.241.6861

How Do You Prevent Sewer Line Backup

3/24/2017 (Permalink)

How do you prevent a sewer line back-up?

Functional sewer lines are a cooperative effort between homeowners, and the towns or cities they live in. Municipalities are responsible for installation, maintenance and repairs on the main sanitary sewage line. Homeowners are responsible for maintaining the service line, that part of the pipe that extends from their property into the main line.

What Causes Sewer Lines to Back Up?

Sewer lines back up for two reasons. Either the pipes are not wide enough to handle the volume of water flowing through the line, or an obstruction of some kind is interfering with the line’s capacity to handle the volume of water flowing through it.

The former situation sometimes arises after a particularly heavy rain. It will lead to multiple backups throughout the area, and residents may see water overflowing through their floor drains.

The latter situation can be caused by a number of different things. One of the most common is a tree root. Tree roots won’t grow into a sewer line that’s intact, but they will seek out the moisture they can siphon off from a cracked line. Root intrusion is a particularly common cause of service line obstruction in houses that were built before 1980. Snaking and cleaning lines regularly as a routine maintenance precaution will minimize the root intrusion problems.

Structural defects can also cause sewer line blockages. These defects include things like the collapse of pipes, the corrosion of pipes and offset joints, or cracks and sags in the lines. If these types of defects occur, resulting flooding can be serious and will frequently require an overhaul and reconstruction of existing sewer lines or service lines. Vandalism can also cause sewage damage when people throw bricks, rocks or other items into drains or manholes.

Man Made Sewer Line Obstructions

In many cases, service line blockages are caused when property owners or members of their families throw things down sink drains or into toilets that clog the lines. These items include:

• Grease, dairy items and food scraps: Warm grease congeals as it cools. Although it may pass through vertical pipes, it will become a solid mass and obstruct any horizontal trap or pipe. This is why all establishments that cook and serve food are required by law to have grease traps.

• Garbage including hair, cigarette butts, cat litter, aquarium gravel and other household refuse.

• Paper products such as disposable diapers, feminine hygiene products, paper towels and sanitary wipes. Paper expands when it gets wet. Since it’s constituted from cellulose, paper can take a long time to break down.

Preventive Maintenance for Sewer Service Lines

Commercial drain cleaners are not effective solutions in the long run for clogged drains. They can damage pipes and harm the environment. The easiest and most inexpensive way to ensure your pipes and sewer service lines are draining the way they should be is to make sure that nothing goes down them that shouldn’t be going down them and to snake them once a year.

 

 

We have emergency crews available 24/7!

If you’ve experienced a water loss, call the professionals at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby.

 

502-241-6861

Got A Leak In Your Roof?

3/23/2017 (Permalink)

Got a Leak in Your Roof? Here’s What You Should Do

Over time, roofs weaken due to exposure to the elements, making roof leaks almost inevitable. Unfortunately, leaking roofs lead to water damage and mold growth if they are not repaired within 24 to 48 hours of the water intrusion. Here are some tips to mitigate and handle roof leaks:

Minimize interior water damage

  • Move any items that might get damaged by water, such as furniture, electronics, and valuables to a dry area. Cover furniture with plastic sheets if you cannot move it.
  • Place a bucket under the leak to collect the water. If the water is splashing into the bucket and onto the floor, pin a piece of string to the ceiling to let the water travel down the string into the bucket.
  • Water leaks may cause paint on the ceiling to bubble or blister. In this case, take a small pin and puncture a hole in the paint to release the water in the area.

Locate and repair the leak

  • If you have access to your attic, trace the water path in the attic to find the source of the leak. Look for water marks, stains or discolorations on the wood made by moisture.
  • Be aware that the point where the water is leaking into the interior does not necessarily indicate the location of the crack in the roof. Water may travel down trusses and beams from the entry point on the roof until it enters a weak spot on the attic floor, causing a leak in the interior.
  • Note the many causes of leaky roofs, such as old moisture barriers, deteriorated shingles or pipe flashing, missing flashing, caps or shingles, or clogged gutters and downspouts.
  • Have your roof inspected and your gutters and downspouts cleaned twice a year to help prevent roof leaks and structural water damage.
  • Contact a professional roof inspection and repair company if you are not comfortable doing the above tasks.

Repairing roof leaks often requires the services of trained professionals so it’s best to hire a certified contractor. It’s also important to act quickly when you have a leaky roof to prevent water damage and mold growth. For mold remediation service and flood water damage repair, contact SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby at 502.241.6861

Common Water Damage From Winter Weather Hazards

3/17/2017 (Permalink)

Common water damage from winter weather hazards

 We've had a mild winter this year. However, doesn’t happen often, but we figured that since it did it would be a good chance to remind people of the most common water damage events that can happen due to cold weather and snow. For many in the US, the thought of getting home water damage from a cold snap doesn’t even register on their radar. But the truth is, any home can be susceptible to cold weather, and that’s especially true for homes in the South that may not be built in such a way to protect the home’s vital infrastructure. So now that almost everybody across the US had a nice scare, let’s talk through what you need to be aware of in order to protect your home from water damage.

 

Ice dam formations on your roof

 

This is more common in colder climates where snow and cold weather tend to stick around throughout the winter. But ice dams cause a significant amount of water damage each year and can often times becomes a black mold problem as well if left untreated. There’s a number of different techniques people apply to try and rid themselves of existing ice dams, but the truth is these can actually hurt your roof and cause more lasting long term damage.

 Roof damages from high winds

 

Winter storms can often bring with them damaging winds that can rip shingles off your roof. Just a small amount of damaged or missing shingles can end up allowing a lot of water into your attic and/or home if rain or snow accompany the winds. If possible, have a roofing company check your roof after a strong wind storm just to make sure you don’t have any damages that could cause significant water damage.

 

Pipe bursts

 

By far the most common winter weather related water damage comes from frozen pipes that burst. It happens all the time when temperatures plunge. If you live in a colder climate, it usually happens when an exterior hose spigot or other pipe in the crawlspace/basement is exposed to the elements. If you live in the South, the culprit could be plumbing pipes that are traveling through your attic. In either case, they must be insulated or you’re at risk of some serious flooding issues!

 

Snowmelt

 

Melting snow can impact any home, whether it has a basement, crawlspace, or a slab foundation. If enough snow ends up piling up next to your foundation, it’s going to create a lot of water once it melts. Hopefully when it does melt, your lawn slopes away from your house but if not you could end up with hundreds of gallons of water lurking next to your house. With that much water, over time it’s going to soak into and through your foundation and cause damage inside your property!

 

While these certainly aren’t the only way hazardous winter weather can cause water damage, they are the most common causes we see each winter. So like we always say on this blog, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Water damage costs can be high, and many types of damage aren’t covered by homeowner’s insurance policies. So it’s safest to take preventative steps on your own to make sure you greatly reduce the chances you end up with a problem on your hands!

If you're experiencing Water Damage from Winter Weather Hazards call the professionals at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby/Trimble/Henry/Carroll/Spencer at 502.241.6861 today to speak with a Mitigation Specialist. 

What To Do If You Have A Serious Water Leak Or Flood

3/16/2017 (Permalink)

If you have a serious water leak or flood then this is something that you need to deal with swiftly and effectively. Unbeknownst to many, water can actually cause extensive and severe damage to a property that goes well beyond what you see on the surface. Here we will look a little more at the types of damage that a burst pipe, caved in ceiling or flood can do and at how you can minimize this destruction.

Why A Water Leak & Water Damage is So Severe

So what is it about water damage that makes it such a serious problem?

The most obvious damage that can be caused by water is of course erosion and water logging. If you have paper documents or wallpaper this can become moldy and start coming away from the walls. Likewise, if you have anything else with elements that dissolve in water or with ink that runs, this can be ruined by even a relatively minor flood or water leak.

This becomes a lot more dangerous suddenly if you have any kind of exposed electric cables or power sockets. If you have a wall socket for instance that’s in danger of being exposed to water damage then this can result in an electric shock and possibly even a fire. Electronic appliances like TVs and laptops meanwhile can be completely ruined beyond repair.

But the damage goes further than that. For instance, one additional form of water damage is mold growth. And if you have a wet surface, then a mold spore can settle there and lead to mold growth in as little as 24 hours.

Then there’s the fact that water can be highly unhygienic. If you have category 3 ‘black water’ then this can leave a terrible odor.

Water damage can also lead to structural damage to a property, it can knock things over and it can make a lot of mess.

So if you have water spraying up out of a cracked pipe – it’s paramount that you do something about it as soon as you possibly can.

How to Deal With A Water Leak & Damage

With all that in mind then, what can you do to quickly and effectively deal with water damage?

The first thing to do is to try and plug the water leak if at all possible. This won’t always be easy but if the water is coming from a pipe or tap then you may be able to isolate the water supply in your building by finding the ‘stop tap’. This closes off the circuit and thereby prevents more water from reaching that area.

If the issue is a flood meanwhile and you have sandbags or other items you can use as a barricade, then you can use these to block the flood of water. Meanwhile, anything that is on the floor that may be damaged by water can be removed and placed elsewhere. Got a laptop? Take it upstairs.

Note: you should not do this at the expense of your own safety. If there is any chance of injury or contamination as a result of the water leak, then vacate your home immediately and leave it to the professionals.

The next thing to do is to call a water damage restoration companies. These companies deal with the restoration of water damage but they also handle the immediate problem and will offer to seal walls and pipes in order to prevent the water from leaking further.

These companies will also handle many aspects of water damage restoration that you wouldn’t be able to on your own. They will help you to remove and dispose of items that are ‘beyond’ help, they will give sanitize any areas affected by contaminated water and will handle mold remediation and they will even deal with odors.

Most water damage restoration companies also offer a number of other services along the lines of renovation companies. This way, they can also help to restore your property back to the condition it was in prior to the damage – and even to restore it beyond that point by making improvements. Whether you need your walls repainting, your carpet refitting or your kitchen cabinets replaced, they should be able to help with these matters.

Preventing A Water Leak & Water Damage

Once you’ve done all this, the last thing to address is prevention. Water damage restoration companies can do a lot to help you restore your property and if you act quickly you can also minimize the damage to your possessions yourself. However, restoring your property is always going to be a distant second compared with preventing the damage in the first place.

How can you prevent water damage and a water leak? One important tip is to make sure that you get regular maintenance checks for your plumbing, for your roofing and for any other potential areas that might put you at risk. Flat roofs are particular dangerous because they can cave in when water builds up on top – so make sure a contractor comes round to look at them often. Likewise, if you’re on a flood plain, then look into building up defenses that can protect you in case there should be one. Plumbing is also something that needs regular maintenance and checkups – and if your plumber tells you that your system is old and could do with replacing… don’t put it off!

Have a Water Damage or Flood? Call the professionals here at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby/ Trimble/Spencer/Henry/Carroll today at 502.241.6861

The Advantages Of Pack Out Services

3/15/2017 (Permalink)

THE ADVANTAGES OF PACK OUT SERVICES

Pack out services will help you keep your valuables safe and organized while your home is restored to its original beauty.

If you find yourself having to deal with stressful situations such as fire damage, water damage, or a massive mold problem, pack out service is a key part of the solution. It is integral to the remediation process to protect and treat all of your expensive and well loved furnishings and belongings. If your possessions have not already been damaged, leaving them in your home or business while remediation takes place may render them damaged or unusable. Your belongings will require a detailed inventory and documentation of damage, as well as to be stored properly. This is where pack out service comes in.

The Benefits Of Content Pack Out Service

Insurance companies demand immediate steps to be taken against further damage for policy coverage purposes. While this can sometimes be done on site, it is often better to remove any valuables for off site treatment from an unfit environment as soon as possible. This gets treasured belongings out of a wet or contaminated environment and to a location where they can be safely treated and stored. Packout service takes care of the removal, treatment, and return of your possessions.

The Steps Of Content Pack Out Service

First, all affected possessions will be accounted for and placed into two categories: salvageable and unsalvageable. A detailed inventory will be created, and all damage will be documented thoroughly for any insurance claims. Then what can salvaged is transported to a secure facility where it is fixed and stored appropriately until you require it again in either new housing or your restored residence or business. Unsalvageable items are also stored for insurance inspections. Anything from furniture to electronics to draperies and personal files can be salvaged and stored.  

Ready for Expert Pack Out Service from Professionals You Can Trust?

If you are ready to get a professional expertly restore your property from the effects of water damage, contact SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby, a skilled company that serves the Oldham/Shelby/Trimble/Henry/Trimble/Carroll with 24/7 availability for all of your emergencies. Whenever you call, we promise to have a skilled and trained technician at your property within mere hours of your call. For more information and to get a quote, give us a call at 502-241-6861. 

General Estimation for Water Damage

3/13/2017 (Permalink)

Water Damage can be an expensive task to take on. Depending on the extent of the water damage, the cost can seem to just add up right in front of your eyes. The costliest of water damage repairs are found when water comes into contact with wood, sheet rock, or other biodegradable materials. If you don’t treat water damage, then you will end up with mold, structural damage, health problems, and safety issues. It’s extremely important that you catch any water damage early on before any other problems arise. 

 

What to Do First

Common causes of water damage are broken pipes, floods, sewage back-ups, and faulty window or door installation processes. When you have found water damage in your home or work space, it’s important that you watch out for all of these things in order to prevent water damage from happening again. It’s also important that you know what caused the water damage in the first place.

If you have insurance on your home, then you are probably covered. Most homeowner’s insurance plans will cover the costs of water damage restoration. They will not cover the damage if you let the water sit in your home for too long. The only way that your insurance company will pay the fees is if you call a company soon after the water damage was caused. If the insurance company can prove that you waited too long to hire a company to remove the water and damage created, then they can refuse to pay for the costs. This means it’s important that you report a leaking roof, pipe, or other structural issues that might cause water damage as soon as you see them. Reporting these problems will ensure that your insurance will cover the fees, and will help prevent flooding in the long run.

How Costs Are Calculated

The cost of water damage depends on several different factors. The size of the affected area is a main factor. The extent of the damage is another. If the water is full of harmful bacteria and microorganisms, then the cost will go up as well. The least expensive cost will be cleaning up water damage that was caused from a pipe. The next expensive is cleaning up water damage that was caused from a dishwasher or washing machine. This water will be gray and have minor contaminants. The most expensive is cleaning up water damage caused by a flood or sewage back-up. This water is typically black.

Fixing a small area of water damage from a leaky roof may only cost a few hundred dollars, whereas fixing a flooded basement can cost several thousand dollars, depending on the size of the affected area.

Tips for Preventing Air Condition Water Damage

3/7/2017 (Permalink)

Most homeowners who enjoy cool and comfortable temperatures indoors throughout summer thanks to their air conditioning system don't realize that air conditioners can sometimes cause water damage if not properly maintained. When working at peak efficiency, an air conditioning system can collect 10 to 20 gallons of water daily. Ideally, this water drains off of the condensation coil into a collection pan and then is disposed of automatically into the sewer system. But if the drain becomes clogged and the unit produces more water than it can easily handle, the overflow of water can lead to damaged floors and carpeting in addition to creating unhealthy deposits of mold.

A clogged drain line is often the major source of creating water damage, but other causes include excessive condensation that occurs when the unit is running round the clock in addition to evaporator coils that may freeze up and then defrost on a regular basis. Because most of the unit is typically hidden from view, unless regular inspections take place, water damage can be occurring on a daily basis and accumulating into hundreds of dollars worth of damage.


 


One of the best ways to avoid air conditioner water damage is to change the HVAC air filter at least once a month. This also gives a homeowner the opportunity to observe whether or not there is excessive moisture collecting on the condensation line. Ensuring that an AC unit has clean air filters also helps prevent the unit from overworking, a situation that causes freezing and then defrosting on the evaporator coils, leading to water damage. It's also important to regularly check to see that water is indeed flowing from the opening of the condensation line directly to the drain as it was designed to do, especially during periods of very high humidity in the atmosphere.

 

When installing an AC condensation line, avoid using elbow connections if possible and have the line run in as straight an up and down direction as possible to facilitate water removal from the unit. It's a good idea to get a professional air conditioning repair service to clean the condensation line at least once a year or every six months if the AC system is used on a year-round basis. A professional plumbing service can also install a condensation pump to help ensure the free flow of excess water into the proper disposal drain. A repair technician may recommend installing a device known as a safety float switch which will automatically shut down the power to an AC unit whenever condensation builds up and there is a danger of water overflow.

 

Professional maintenance of your HVAC unit on an annual basis can also help to prevent water damage from occurring by checking the air filter, the condition of the condensation line as well as the drains to eliminate any blockage or other problems. Ask about having your air conditioner service technician apply an algaecide to your system to discourage build-up of debris in the drain lines in addition to preventing the growth of mold and mildew which can spread throughout the HVAC and pollute the air throughout the house.

 

Water Damage caused by HVAC? Call SERVPRO of Oldahm/Shelby at 502.241.6861

The Link Between Spring Cleaning- Gutters and Water Damage

2/27/2017 (Permalink)

When it comes to your gutters, most homeowners live by a simple motto: out of sight, out of mind. Unfortunately, this type of thinking can lead to water damage.

After another seemingly endless winter, spring has finally sprung. The weather is noticeably warmer, the sun is noticeably brighter, and life is beginning to spring forth from the ground. You know what that means, right? It’s time for Spring Cleaning. It’s time to roll up your sleeves, dust off your feather duster, and prepare your home for summer.

The Link between Spring Cleaning and Your Gutters

When preparing your home for summer, don’t forget to prepare your entire home for summer. This means giving the exterior of your house a little TLC, starting with your gutters.

How to Clean Your Gutters

When it comes to your gutters, most homeowners live by a simple motto: out of sight, out of mind. Unfortunately, this type of thinking can lead to some serious issues, such as water damage, but we will touch on that later. For now, we are simply concerned with how to clean your gutters.

  1. Gather Supplies: You will need a ladder, a hose, a plastic bag or two, a plumber’s auger, and a partner. Any time you climb a ladder, you should have someone with you to help stabilize the ladder and ensure your safety.
  2. Scoop Debris: Climb that ladder and start scooping out all of the twigs, leaves, and muck. Put the debris in your bag and slowly work your way down the entire length of the gutter.
  3. Rinse and Repeat: Once you have removed all of the big stuff, you can use your hose to give your gutters a thorough rinsing.
  4. Still Clogged? If you still notice drainage issues, use the plumber’s auger to push or pull the barrier and dislodge the clog.

The Link between Your Gutters and Water Damage

Your shingles, with the help of gravity, are designed to protect your home from the elements and move water safely to your gutters. Your gutters, meanwhile, are designed to then transport this water from your roof to the side of your home. It’s a simple system, but it works…if you properly maintain your roof and gutters.

If your gutters become clogged with twigs and leaves, it can slow or even halt the drainage of rainwater. When this happens, water can begin to backup and pool, slowly seeping in under your shingles. You see, your shingles are only designed to shield your roof from water running from top to bottom, not water rising up from below. As a result, fascia boards can begin to rot, allowing water to find its way into your attic and, eventually, the rest of your home.

Hello, water damage.

Water Damage Restoration from SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby has certified licensed restoration technicians on call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. Water damage doesn’t work on a 9-5 schedule, so why should your water damage company?

Call 502.241.6861 for Emergency Restoration!

Water Damage Grows Exponentially Worse

2/14/2017 (Permalink)

Water damage grows exponentially worse, the longer you wait to call SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby

Within a matter of hours, the damage spreads its muggy little tentacles.

  • mold & mildew get a foothold in your carpets, furnishings and inside the wall
  • standing water breeds microorganisms that cause rot
  • odor grows more noxious and permanent
  • drywall is soaked, warped and rendered useless
  • wood swells and becomes malformed
  • metal tarnishes and rusts.

At this point, insurance claims start to rise astronomically and the chances of recouping full value drop dramatically. And that’s just the beginning of this horror story. Within a day or two, fungi appears, showing up as green or black mold or some especially creative-shaped mushrooms. Adhesives lose their grip on your ceramic tile. Wallpaper peels. Wooden door casings swell up. Floors buckle. Fabrics are stained beyond preservation. Papers must be discarded. Paint peels. Electronic components fail. The occupants are at risk from air-borne and water-borne contaminants.

Heard enough?

Call SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby at 502.241.6861

At SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby, we have seen this timeline unfold time and time again and have made a profession out of mediating water damages to homes. That’s why we feel a sense of urgency when a homeowner calls to report a water-damaged home or business. For most people, this is their first go-round with the horror. They are confused and don’t know where to turn. 

Even if the water entering your home was clean (from a broken water intake pipe, for instance), it quickly turns into a cesspool. Stagnant water is a prime breeding site for organisms that cause disease and damage. Water-soaked materials, even after they start to dry, provide a fine environment for growing a good crop of mold and fungi.

If your first call is to SERVPRO of Oldahm/Shelby, we can arrest the growth of mold before it becomes a serious situation, detracting from your home’s safety, comfort and value.

It’s critical to attack the situation ASAP. Homeowners sometimes try to dry the affected areas themselves and learn afterward that it’s more complicated than just wiping up the kitchen floor after a spill. Mold spores are all around us. It takes a good soaking to revive them. And then they get the upper hand.

 

Don’t wait until your home is beyond help because of odors, stains, structural damage, system failure and black mold. When you have water damage, call SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby. We’ll get to work restoring your home to its pristine condition, the way you remember it before the flood waters hit.

What to do if you find Water in the basement

2/10/2017 (Permalink)

The following is provided by the IICRC. 

What To Do Find Water In Your Basement

One of the worst nightmares for any homeowner is finding water in the basement, and in most cases, the only way to deal with such a situation is to bring in a professional. Excess water, especially when it is contaminated, has the potential to cause a great deal of damage, and if the problem is not dealt with properly, the situation can quickly get out of hand. This is especially true when water is pooling in the home and coming in contact with organic materials like drywall or fabric.

Water in the basement can be caused by a lot of factors. The room may sit under the water table, which will slowly push water into the home. A disaster like a flood can quickly fill the room with fluid, as well as a burst pipe or other plumbing mishap. No matter what causes the water to build up in the home, it will take a certified team to remove it and restore the basement effectively.

There are a couple steps, though, that a homeowner can take to minimize damage and make the home safe to navigate through. If a pipe burst or is leaking, then cutting off the supply line into the home can halt the problem. Also, switching off the home’s power may be necessary, as an electrical discharge can make walking through water exceedingly dangerous and cause a fire.

Safety is the primary concern when contending with excess moisture, and a certified crew will be able to get the home restored in while avoiding any dangerous situations.

Renovating Floors: Wood/Laminate Surfaces

2/8/2017 (Permalink)

Renovating Floors Part 2: Wood/Laminate Surfaces

Do you have soaked wood floors?  Do you have bubbled laminate floors?  You must of had a leak of some sort, right?  Water Damage on a hardwood or laminate floor can be a calamitous sight.  Whether it happened due to  a leaky hose on a washing machine, a leak under your sink from a broken or leaky pipe, or even a water cooler that went bad and spilled the entire five gallons of water overnight without you realizing it – No homeowner wants to see a discolored, bubbled, or warped floor boards in your kitchen or bathroom.  Over time, wood and laminate floors can become worn with daily wear and tear, the varnish can lose its shine, and pets can cause scratches with their paws.  None of these, however, are worse than what water damage can do to your hardwood or laminate floors!

How to identify water damage on your hardwood/laminate flooring: 

 Act quickly if you have an accident!

Start by cleaning up the water or any other liquid(s) that has been spilled on the wood or laminate surfaces.If you see white stains or hazy type of stain on your wood floors, a personally tried and true method is to take care of it with some buffing, using automotive paste or even toothpaste.  Apply with a light cotton fabric.

Minor damage can be taken care of quickly and easily, but if you have severe water damage, the floors can become warped, or bubbled.  If you have severe water damage to your wood or laminate floors,  SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby/Trimble/Henry can come and help you with a free assessment.  Signs of mold growth on your wood flooring can be identified by cupping, popping, or cracking boards.  All American Water Restoration can take care of water damage, mold damage, and restoration of your wood and laminate floors.

How to Dry Out Hidden Water Leak and Water Damage

2/7/2017 (Permalink)

Realtors say many homeowners are unaware of a hidden water leak — which can interfere with the sale of a home, or be a concern for a new home buyer. A cracked pipe, broken seal, leaking spigot. . . There are a number of ways that water can creep into places it is not meant to go. The long-term results are more visible, including mold, rot, blistered paint, or damaged flooring.

Minor water leak often lead to major repair bills. But it’s possible to avoid the worst water damage by catching the situation early. You would probably notice a sagging ceiling above the dining room table. But what about more subtle signs? Water damage doesn’t always turn up at the source. It follows the path of least resistance, and then makes an appearance in unlikely places. You have to follow your nose, use your detective skills, or just put two and two together.

One big clue is whether there’s been a past incident with water in the home. Too often, the visible signs of a leak are eliminated but dampness within the walls or the floors is not. A floor that seems spongy and softer than it should is an indication that all is not dry underfoot. Mildew on an inside wall should set off alarm bells, or at least an investigation.

Leaks are cumulative. Building materials can absorb a surprising amount of liquid at first, but eventually the damage spreads to a deeper level, undermining your home’s structure and foundation.

Today’s homes are all about tight envelopes and energy efficiency. We have bulked up on the insulation, sealed leaks and gaps, and worked to keep as much conditioned air as possible inside the building. This efficiency, however, sometimes overlooks the fact that buildings need air circulation. Poor air flow becomes a real problem when there is water trapped somewhere. Consequences may include:

  • Mold and mildew
  • Permanent damage to wood, carpet, wallpaper, paint and furnishings
  • Drywall & insulation that needs to be removed and replaced
  • Contaminated ductwork and other systems

SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby Has the Tools & Know-how to Dry Out your Home

Even if water damage leaves no visible tracks, it is not something you want to live with. Crawl spaces, basements, air conditioning systems, attics, windows . . . all are vulnerable if the situation isn’t professionally resolved. The longer the situation is allowed to fester, the more expensive the ultimate clean-up becomes.

While we tend to think of water damage as having an outside source, this is not always the case. The occasional hurricane or blizzard or tornado garners the lion’s share of publicity. But the humble leaking pipe behind the washing machine can be equally devastating, especially if it’s not noticed for weeks or months. (At least hurricanes have the grace to announce their arrival.)

If something’s bothering you and you’ve been keeping it below the radar screen that is your attention, maybe it’s time to focus. Mildew around the shower stall? Funky odor in the laundry room? Peeling paint in the kitchen? Could be trouble.

Call SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby/Trimble/Henry and ask for technician to check out the problem. Don’t just dry it and forget it. That sneaky little leak could come back to haunt you!

 

 

Damage From Water Should Be Cleaned By Certified Professionals

2/2/2017 (Permalink)

 

The following is provided by The Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification.

 

The amount of damage water can cause is amazing, and often underestimated by homeowners. Excess moisture is bad enough, but when a home is flooded or hit with a plumbing disaster (like a burst pipe), the situation can quickly get out of hand. There’s a reason why these incidents are among the most expensive problems a homeowner can face. Contaminated water not only creates immediate structural problems, it can leave serious biological threats behind after it has been removed.

Floods, sewage backflows, and other sources of contaminated fluid usually cause the worst damage. Dirty water is filled with all kinds of deadly substances, ranging from chemical residues to animal feces to parasites. Bacteria, viruses and fungi grow explosively in contaminated fluid, and severe health risks, like salmonella and hepatitis, are common in flood waters.

This problem is compounded by the composition of most homes, which are filled with organic materials. Drywall, wood and the matter that is trapped in carpet fibers are just a few examples, and they can give pathogens room to grow. Within 48 hours, mold may begin creeping behind the walls and releasing spores, and any organic materials that have been soaked through by contaminated fluid will usually have to be destroyed.

That’s why restoration firms, in addition to surveying the home for structural problems, will dry the home quickly and apply antibacterial, antiviral, and antifungal agents to all surfaces that had contact with the water. This ensures the family can return to a safe home, and not one harboring a collection of deadly pathogens. 

Our IICRC professionals at SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby are here 24 hours a day for all your Water Loss needs. Call us today. 502.241.6861

Water Woes: 3 Common Home Insurance Claims You Can Avoid

1/26/2017 (Permalink)

Most household floods and water damage are caused by plumbing or appliance failure, according to a study by Roto-Rooter, a U.S. plumbing and drain service company.

The bill for these disasters can add up to hundreds or even thousands of dollars.

The Roto-Rooter study shows that only about 8 percent of residential flooding claims are the result of weather. Thirty percent are caused by appliance failure like a dishwasher leak and 62 percent by plumbing failure a hose or pipe bursting.

So, in short, the majority of claims are preventable.

Paul Berger, an insurance adjuster at Claim Solvers in Florida and an insurance attorney, says the general rule is that only breaks and sudden damage are covered by standard home insurance coverage.

Most policies feature a maintenance clause that excludes damage by problems that could have been fixed by the policyholder. "The purpose of the maintenance clause is to encourage homeowners to repair items such as leaky sinks and toilets before they cause significant damage and require filing a claim," Berger says.

Even if your home insurance policy does cover a watery claim, soaking up the damages could jeopardize your rates.

"Any claim can affect future rates or renewals because you could lose your 'claim-free credit' or other discounts," says Janet Scott-Buckley, manager of Harrington Insurance Agency in North Andover, Mass. Multiple claims over a few years can also affect your premium.

Fortunately, there are some easy steps homeowners can take to protect their homes - and wallets -- from water damage.

1. Dishwasher

Dishwasher lines and hoses can spring a leak or blow out, often in the middle of the wash cycle, and flood your kitchen with gallons and gallons of water.

Is it covered? Fernando Pagés Ruiz, a public insurance adjuster in Colorado, says the damage caused by a hose that bursts behind a dishwasher generally is covered; any deductible would apply.

"The cost to repair the hose or dishwasher would not be covered by the homeowner's insurance policy, though," Ruiz says. Hiring a plumber easily could cost $200 or more.

If the dishwasher had a slow leak for several years and you didn't repair it, or filed a claim when the cabinets had thoroughly rotted, then your insurer could deny your claim. "The policy language refers to 'sudden' and 'accidental' damage," Ruiz says.

Prevent the problem: Never run the appliance if you're not going to be home, says Sam Lazarus, owner of ServiceMaster by Best Corp. in Kansas. If a pipe bursts, you can minimize the damage by shutting off the water at the water supply line under the sink.

Prevention is key.

Rubber hoses commonly are used to supply water to a dishwasher, and they deteriorate over time. Replace the rubber hose with a much sturdier steel-braided hose found at most home improvement centers and hardware stores). Buying the hose and installing it yourself costs about $20, Lazarus says.

2. Washing machine

Malfunctioning dishwasher drains or water hoses result in some of the most common claims filed by homeowners, says Douglas Nadeau, a spokesman for State Farm. "Most homeowners leave washing machine water supply lines turned on so when a hose busts, water can discharge at up to 500 gallons per hour, causing major damage in a short period of time." Nadeau says.

Lazarus says the cost of this damage easily could exceed $2,500.

Is it covered? If a homeowner's washing machine hose bursts and causes water damage, the damage generally would be covered, minus your deductible.

"The repair to the hose or machine would not be covered. An insurer would only cover any resulting damage caused by the hose or machine," Scott-Buckley says.

Prevent the problem: Joseph King, a spokesman for the Insurance Institute for Business & Home Safety, suggests inspecting washing machine hoses often. "If they're original equipment and more than 5 years old, replace them with stronger steel-braided hoses," King says. These can be installed by a homeowner with a little guidance from a plumbing specialist at a home improvement or hardware store.

For added peace of mind, King suggests installing an automatic shut-off valve equipped with an alarm to alert you of any hose problems. This kind of valve costs about $100 but can save thousands of dollars if it detects a leak and prevents flooding.

3. Leaky toilet

Any kinds of toilet leaks are signs of trouble. Cracks to the tank or toilet aren't common unless something hits the tank, such as a picture falling off the wall and hitting the "throne."

"More often than not, the supply line to the water tank develops a hole," Lazarus says.

Is it covered? Page says the damage caused by the water is covered by your home insurance policy, but repairing or replacing the toilet is not. "You'd have to pay your deductible, too," he says.

Prevent the problem: Lazarus says it's better to replace a leaky toilet than to repair it. A new tank and bowl can run anywhere from $89 to $250 at a home improvement or hardware retailer. "If you hire a plumber to install the new tank or toilet, it may cost about $150 or more," Lazarus says.

If the water supply line is the problem, Lazarus says, that's easy to repair. "Replace it with a metal-braided supply line because they tend to hold up better in the long run," he says.

See how much you could save today on your home insurance. Get your free home insurance quotes today!

Dishwasher Leak?

Call SERVPRO Of Oldham/Shelby today. 502.241.6861

Water Damage Emergency Tips

1/19/2017 (Permalink)

 

What you can do until help arrives

After any water damage situation, your primary focus should be safety:

  • Is it safe to stay in the house?
  • Electrical and "slip and fall" hazards are some of the most prevalent concerns.
  • Only do activities that are safe for you to perform.
  • Wet materials can be VERY heavy. Be careful!

Have A Water Damage Emergency?
Call SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby/Trimble/Henry at 502.241.6861

 

What To Do After Flooding

  • Remove excess water by mopping and blotting.
  • Wipe excess water from wood furniture after removal of lamps and tabletop items.
  • Remove and prop wet upholstery and cushions.
  • Place aluminum foil or wood blocks between furniture legs and wet carpeting.
  • Turn air conditioning on for maximum drying in summer.
  • Remove colored rugs from wet carpeting.
  • Remove art objects to a safe, dry place.
  • Gather loose items from floors.

What NOT To Do After Flooding

  • Don't leave wet fabrics in place. Hang furs and leather goods.
  • Don't leave books, magazines or other colored items on wet carpet or floors.
  • Don't use your household vacuum to remove water.
  • Don't use television or other household appliances.
  • Don't turn on ceiling fixtures if ceiling is wet, and keep out of rooms where ceilings are sagging.

Will Your Homeowner's Cover Water Damage?

1/11/2017 (Permalink)

Will Your Homeowner's Cover Water Damage?
Most people learn a great deal about their homeowner’s insurance policy after there’s been an event— which is not the ideal time to have a crash course in coverage. At SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby/Trimble/Henry, we see quite a few policies and situations. Although the details vary from one state to another and from one policy to another, we can share some general guidelines.

If you live in a flood-prone area— not just near a waterway, but in an area that’s frequently hit by major storms— you should get flood insurance. Most insurance policies don’t cover floods, which are the most common natural disaster in the nation. Between 2008 and 2012, the average flood claim was $42,000-plus. Not something you want to pay out of pocket!

Water Damage v. Flood: What’s the Difference?

Water damage, as covered in the homeowner’s policy includes ‘instances of water hitting your home before touching the outside ground’. (No, we’re not making this up.) Damage from a leaky roof or broken pipe are insured. So too is mold that results from those accidents. But mold resulting from a flood won’t be covered unless you have separate flood insurance.

It’s important to note that it is the damage to your home that’s insured, not the actual item that failed. So if a busted pipe was the source of the problem, the ruined carpet will be covered but not the broken pipe.

We are always here to help in such instances. SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby/Trimble/Henry provides 24 hour support for all your Water Loss needs. You can contact us at 502.241.6861.

Thawing Frozen Pipes

1/6/2017 (Permalink)

What You'll Need

You'll want to have these tools on hand to thaw frozen pipes:

  • Heavy towel or burlap bag and hot or boiling water
  • Propane torch
  • Heat lamp, hair dryer, or electric iron

 

Thawing Frozen Pipes

You may think your entire plumbing system is in perfect working order and there is little or no chance of a pipe bursting and flooding your house. There is one situation, however, you may not have considered. Water that freezes during the winter in an unprotected pipe expands, and that expansion can rupture an otherwise sound pipe.

A frozen pipe is always an inconvenience, but it can actually result in a much more serious situation than just a temporary loss of water. By taking the proper preventive steps, you may never need to worry about thawing frozen pipes, or worse, repairing a pipe that bursts when the water in it freezes solid.

Here's what to do if you wake up some frigid winter morning to find a water pipe frozen solid:

Step 1: Open faucet so steam produced by your thawing activities will be able to escape.

Step 2: Start thawing pipe (see pipe-thawing options below) at faucet, and work back toward other end of frozen section. As you melt ice, water and steam will come out open faucet. If you started in the middle, steam produced by melting ice could get trapped and build up enough pressure to burst the pipe.

Pipe-thawing options: There are several things you can do to thaw your home's pipes. Here's a list:

  • Probably the most popular and safest pipe-thawing option is to use hot water. Wrap and secure heavy towel or burlap bag around pipe to concentrate and hold heat against it. Place bucket under pipe to catch runoff water, then pour hot or boiling water over towel.
  • A less messy but far more dangerous heat source for thawing frozen pipes is a propane torch equipped with a flame-spreader nozzle. With this heat source, you must be extremely careful to prevent torch flame from damaging or igniting wall behind pipe. A scrap of fireproof material between pipe and wall is a good precautionary measure, but the way you use the torch is the main element in safe pipe thawing. Keep flame moving back and forth. Never leave it in one spot very long. Be especially careful if you're near any soldered pipe joints. Pass over them very quickly or else they may melt and cause leaks, and you'll find that you have a much more serious plumbing problem on your hands than a frozen pipe. Caution: Never use torch or other direct high heat on plastic pipe.
  • If you want to avoid the messiness of thawing with hot water and the danger of melting soldered joints with propane torch, try heat lamp or hair dryer as heat source. These work less quickly but are much safer.

To thaw a frozen drainpipe, remove trap, and insert length of garden hose into pipe. When you can't push hose any farther, it has probably reached the ice. Raise your end of the hose and feed hot water in through a funnel. This way, the hot water is sure to get to the problem area. You must be careful when using this technique.

Until the ice melts and drains down the pipe, the hot water you pour in will back up toward you. Have a bucket ready to catch the overflow, and be careful not to scald yourself.

 

As always for all of your Water Damage needs SERVPRO Of Oldham/Shelby is available 24 hours a day- 7 days a week. We also service Henry and Trimble Counties.

502.241.6861

Avoid Water Damage Caused by HVAC Condensation Leak

8/16/2016 (Permalink)

Water damage resulting from an air conditioning condensation line leaks is more common than you might think. Condensation line leaks can be very devastating as they usually go unnoticed, mostly because they are inside walls and located in low traffic areas. The high humidity and dark space around those lines can also make them prone to mold growth. As the mold grows, it gets distributed through the HVAC system to the rest of the home.

So how do you prevent A/C condensation line leaks? The most important thing you can do is inspect it regularly, as even a slight sign of condensation is a sign you may have a problem. Here are four tips on maintaining your A/C condensation line:

1. Inspect it on a regular basis.

Every time you change your HVAC air filter, which should be changed every 30 days on average, you should visually inspect the AC condensation line for moisture. 

2. Ensure proper AC condensation line pitch and reduce elbow connection angles.

Having your AC condensation line run straight as possible is ideal, and a drop of 1/8 inch for every 12 inches of length is the minimum pitch. Remove any elbow connections with 90-degree angles and replace them with 45-degree elbow connections when possible. 

3. Check the AC condensation line opening and exit

When your AC unit is running, check the condensation line opening to make sure you see water flowing to the drain. The amount of water you see will depend on the humidity level in the house.

4. Clean the line every 3 to 6 months

One easy way to clean an A/C line is by using a nylon string and a small piece of cotton rag. Use a shop vacuum to suck out the nylon string on the exit side, then tie the small piece of cotton rag to the other end and pull through. This will bring all of the debris in the line out the exit side. Do not make the rag piece too large or it will get stuck in the line with no way out. It should be small enough to fit loosely in the pipe.

Finally, if you have no room to create the minimum pitch, you may have to use a condensation pump to help move the water out.  Consult your HVAC serviceman for installation and make sure you have an emergency cut-off if it fails.

Your local SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby is available 24 hours a day should your line leak and create a Water Damage.

Here to Help

7/27/2016 (Permalink)

There's no such thing as a small disaster-especially when a small leak now could blossom into a big claim later. Unseen water can soak through walls, seep through carpet and pool on sub floors, causing major problems over time. You need help-fast. No matter what time of day or night, contact   SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby Co. to begin emergency mitigation. Emergency mitigation means that under normal circumstances, we can be on-site within four hours to begin drying your building and restoring contents. The faster the water is removed, the less chance of serious damage to your facility. Our tech's are trained and understand how to manage the drying process by utilizing state-of-the art equipment and the latest technology, your structure will be quickly and thoroughly dried, which helps prevent secondary water damages. 

Our certified Tech's will remove moisture and any contaminants by disinfecting and deodorizing to safely clean and dry your building and contents. Help ensure the value of your property by calling SERVPRO of Oldham/Shelby Co. to schedule your appointment. 

Be Flood Smart

3/14/2016 (Permalink)

According to the American Red Cross (ARC) floods cause more damage in the U.S every year than any other weather-related disaster. The ARC offers the following flood safety tips.

Stay away from floodwaters. If you come up on a flowing stream where water is above your ankles, stop, turn around and go another way. Six inches of swiftly moving water can sweep you off of your feet.

If you approach a flooded road while driving, turn around and go the other way. If you are caught on a flooded road and waters are rising rapidly around you, get out of the car quickly and move to higher ground. Most cars can be swept away by less than two feet of moving water.

Keep children out of water. They are curious and often lack judgement about running water or contaminated water.

If a flood does strike your home or business, contact your local SERVPRO Franchise Professionals.

Damage from Clean Water

3/1/2016 (Permalink)

Clean water is water from a broken pipe, or other water source; rainwater is also considered clean. Consider taking the following precautions to help minimize damage or prevent further damage while waiting for help to arrive.

  • Shut off the water source if possible or contact a qualified professional to do so.
  • Turn off circuit breakers for wet areas of the building if access to the power distribution panel is safe from potential electric shock. Do not enter room with standing water, as electrical shock hazards may exist.
  • Remove as much excess water as possible by mopping and blotting. Wipe excess water from wood furniture after removing lamps and tabletop items.
  • Remove and prop up wet upholstery cushions to allow more even drying.
  • Move any paintings, art objects, computers, documents and other valuable items that may be sensitive to moisture to a safe place.
  • Do not leave books, newspapers, magazines or other colored items on wet carpets or floors as they may cause staining.
  • Do not use your household vacuum cleaner to remove water, as there is potential for electrical shock or causing damage to the vacuum cleaner.
  • Do not turn on ceiling fixtures if ceiling is wet; do not enter rooms where ceilings are sagging from retrained water. 
  • Call the CLEANUP TEAM

    2/25/2016 (Permalink)

    When it comes to life's emergencies, it isn't a matter of if they will happen-it is when will they happen. Home and business owners can take steps to prepare for disasters, but you can never fully prevent them from happening. An old pipe bursts. A storm blows in dozens of gallons of water. A washing machine malfunctions. Chances are your home or business will eventually suffer some sort of emergency; that is why it is important to prepare, before disaster strikes.

    SERVPRO Franchise Professionals are trained to respond quickly, professionaly and efficentiently when mitiating your loss. When your home or business is under water, everfy minute counts. That's why your local SERVPRO Franchise Professionals are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Should disaster strike, call your local SERVPRO Franchise to help make it "Like it never even happened."

    Winter Weather Safety Tips

    12/18/2015 (Permalink)

    To help prevent damage  due to weather, consider taking the following precautions to protect your property before cold weather hits.

    Inspect all handrails, stairwells, and entryways to address and correct potential slippery or hazardous areas. Install mats or non slip surfaces and post caution signs where water could be present.

    Protect water pipes from freezing by simply allowing water to drip when temperatures dip below freezing. If pipes are under a cabinet leave the cabinet doors open allowing warm inside air to circulate around the pipes. If the building has outdoor faucets, consider shutting water off at the main valve in the basement or crawl space. Once the valve is off, open the outdoor faucet to ensure it drains, preventing any remaining water from freezing the pipe.

    Is your Property ready for Winter?

    12/15/2015 (Permalink)

    To help prevent damages due to weather, consider taking the following precautions to protect before colder weather hits.

    Check your business property for downed tree limbs and branches. Weather, such as wind, heavy rain, ice and snow, can cause branches to fall, which could cause damage to the property and potentially cause personal injuries.

    Roofs, water pipes and gutters should all be inspected to ensure they are in proper order. Gutter downspouts should be directed away from your building. Clear your gutters of debris that may have gathered during the fall. Leaves and other obstructions can lead to a damming effect that can lead to roof damage and interior water problems.

    Inspect property, especially walkways and parking lots, for proper drainage to alleviate flood hazard potential.