Are you prepared for spring time storms?
The combination of thunderstorms and flooding is spring’s recipe for disaster. And because the weather is so unpredictable in spring, it’s important to prepare for it ahead of time. Here’s how to protect yourself, your family, and your property from severe spring weather:
Before a Storm
- Create a disaster preparedness plan. Establish an outside meeting place and escape routes from each room in your house. Practice the plan with family members. Include your pets in the plan and make sure they wear an ID tag.
- Make sure you and your family know how to turn off utilities and how to use a fire extinguisher.
- Create an emergency supply kit.
- Get flood insurance, which is not included in standard homeowners policies. Don’t wait – flood insurance policies take 30 days to go into effect.
- Make a home inventory in case you need to file an insurance claim. Also, secure important information, such as documents, personal numbers, and insurance policies.
- Make sure your home is in good shape to withstand powerful storms. Tighten your roof shingles and waterproof your basement, windows, and doors.
- Prune the loose branches and remove the dead vegetation in your yard.
- Keep drains and gutters clean to ensure proper drainage. Make sure gutters are tightly attached to your house to guard them against strong winds.
During a Storm
- When a storm is imminent, bring the valuables in your yard inside and move all vehicles and equipment to high ground.
- Don’t walk through moving water. Just a few inches of rapidly moving water can sweep you off your feet.
- If you’re outside, get to higher ground and avoid low lying areas that are likely to flood.
- Don’t drive through floodwater even if you have a large van. Two feet of moving water are enough to take it away.
- If you’re inside, make sure the doors and windows are securely shut. Stay away from windows to avoid the risk of getting struck by shattered glass. Take shelter in your basement if the storm is severe.
- Avoid using utilities and wired electrical equipment. Turn off utilities to mitigate potential damages in case of flooding or other disasters.
- Stay up to date on weather conditions and listen to local authorities if they tell you to evacuate your home.
After a Storm:
- Ensure everyone is OK and check for damage to your home. Be aware of potential hazards.
- If you suspect damage to utilities, call local authorities and wait for their approval to turn them back on.
- If your home has been flooded:
- Avoid contact with floodwater, which is very likely contaminated.
- Make lists of the damaged or lost items, and take photos.
- File the flood insurance claim.
- Hire a professional damage restoration company, such as SERVPRO of South Elkhart County, to get your home back in order safely and efficiently.
Remember, spring doesn’t wait for you to get ready, so make a plan and act now before a thunderstorm or flood strikes your area. For emergency flood repair or mold removal services, call SERVPRO of South Elkhart County
Call the cleanup team that's faster to any sized disaster.
When a flood or other water damage strikes your business or the home of a customer, a myriad of urgent questions arise. If a business was damaged, is the inventory and office equipment safe? What do you tell your customers? When can you reopen?
And if a home was damaged, is it safe to stay in the house? how can the residents protect their belongings, and when will their lives be back to normal? The questions, doubts and fears can be overwhelming to people trying to piece their homes and business back together.
The last thing on the business owner's or homeowner's mind will be tending to the very thing that may help their respective properties the most: Psychrometrics. Also casually known as "The science of drying". Psychrometrics is the study of the air, humidity, and temperature, and their affect on various materials.
Experience Counts When it's YOUR Business
Water leaks within a business can seep into flooring, carpets, baseboards and walls while moving throughout the structure, potentially creating mildew and staining wall. Quick action is critical in avoiding costly repairs and expensive downtime. SERVPRO of South Elkhart County professionals understand the water damage event can not only disrupt your facility, it can also interrupt day-to-day business functions, possibly closing the business and ultimately affecting your revenues. There's no such thing as a small emergency when it threatens to shut down your business. Turn to the company with the resources and experience to be a national leader in cleaning and restoration. SERVPRO Franchise professionals can offer:
- 38 years of business in the cleanup and restoration industry
- More than 1,350 Franchises servicing 48 states.
- Over 5,800 technicians trained in the cleanup and care of commercial property
- Over 95,000 pieces of restoration equipment available nationwide to restore even the largest damage to preloss condition when possible.
SERVPRO of South Elkhart County professionals are available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year to assist you with your cleanup and restoration needs.
From Carpets to Catastrophes
SERVPRO of South Elkhart County can provide an array of services. This list will provide you with an idea of some of the services we provide.
Fire, Smoke and Soot Cleanup and Restoration.
Pretesting helps determine what type of fire has taken place. Knowing the types of smoke and their behavior patterns are vital to proper restoration.
Water Removal and Dehumidification.
We identify the source and type of water, which determines the proper course of action. Drying equipment controls temperature and humidity, minimizing secondary damage.
Crime Scene, Biohazard and Vandalism Cleanup.
Our technicians are trained to safely and effectively clean bio-hazardous substances and prepare waste for proper disposal according to OSHA, EPA, and state and local health regulations.
Mold Mitigation and Remediation
Our technicians work to control and re-mediate mold contaminants while protecting your health and safety.
Air Duct and HVAC Cleaning
Our technicians can inspect your HVAC system and ductwork. Cleaning services can be provided to help restore peak energy efficiency, eliminate offensive odors and improve indoor air quality.
Carpet and Hard Floor Cleaning and Care
Our technicians use the latest IICRC (Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification) training as well as state-of-the-art equipment to remove entrapped soils from deep within your carpet's pile and backings.
Odor Identification and Deodorization
Our technicians will find the source of the odor and determine the best methods to neutralize and eliminate it.
Fabrics are inspected and tested to determine the safest and most effective cleaning method.
Feel free to call SERVPRO of South Elkhart County with any questions and/or concerns at:
Undiscovered Leaks Don't Just Damage Your Business. They Can Damage Your Bottom Line.
Undiscovered leaks and moisture build-up can cause damage to the floors, walls and ceilings of your business, leading to soft dry wall,stained ceiling tiles and other more serious problems. Although the damage may go unnoticed for an extended period of time, proper cleanup is vital to the restoration of your property and equipment. Thermal Imaging equipment can detect even the smallest amounts of moisture in a home. After locating the water damage, extraction and drying will take place to help get you back in business.
Maintenance tips for preventing water damages include but not limited to:
- Inspect ceiling tiles regularly for discoloration or leaks. This could be a sign of leaks in the HVAC unit or piping.
- Check waterlines in coffee makers, refrigerators and water filtration systems for kinks or leaks.
- Remove standing water with a mop and seek professional assistance for complete drying and restoration.
Serving commercial properties for over 35 years, SERVPRO Franchise Specialists help you protect your business from further damage due to water. Contact us at (574)533-2500
Fungi and mold naturally occur in our environment. In fact, over 100,000 kinds of fungi have been identified. Fungi produce some wonderful results. Yeast is a type of fungi used in preparing breads, baked goods and other food products, including some alcoholic beverages. The unique flavor of blue cheese is a result of mold. An edible mushroom is imply a type of fungi, and lifesaving penicillin is a product of mold. Even though mold can add value to our lives, excessive amounts of mold, different types of mold, and/or exposure to molds may present health concerns for some people. Intrusion of water into your home or place of business is an out of the ordinary event. This could result from a water intrusion, long-standing leaks or from poor humidity control. A water damage situation offers opportunities for mold spores that are normally present on surfaces to grow and multiply since moisture and humidity levels are typically higher in such structures. This is a good reason for promptly drying any water or moisture. Organic materials found inside a building, such as wood, paper, drywall and insulation, provide food sources for mold to flourish. A water damage left unattended for any period of time may lead to mold growth, which, in turn, can lead to indoor environmental conditions that pose a health threat. SERVPRO franchise professionals handle water damages every day and know prompt action is required to prevent mold growth. Mold is more likely to spread when moisture has been affecting an environment for a long period of time. If your property has sustained a recent waster damage, it is vital to have water removed and the structure dried promptly. If you have experienced an ongoing moisture problem in the building, it is important to be alert to the following factors:
- The presence of visible mold
- Strong musty odors which may indicate mold is present
- Any evidence of past moisture problems that might indicate previous mold growth
- Excessive humidity
Health Concerns of Mold
Health concerns may arise when excessive mold grows indoors. Molds are found in every environment, and mold spores reproduce rapidly when moisture is present. An Institute of Medicine study found excessive dampness indoors encourages the growth of molds and other organisms, causing a public health problem. The EPA advised that the potential health concerns from molds are an important reason to prevent moisture problems leading to mold growth. It is especially important to clean up existing indoor mold growth to increase property appeal and retain its value. If a property has experienced a water intrusion, your SERVPRO Franchise Professional can inspect the damage to see whether moisture has penetrate materials or is allowing mold growth. However, anyone may experience health problems associated with exposure to mold in damp buildings.
If you feel that you have an issue with mold, feel free to give SERVPRO of South Elkhart County a call and we can come take a look.
Winter Storm Damage
Now that the weather has turned cold, it can wreck havoc on your house if it is not properly cared for. the cold weather is notorious for freezing and/or bursting water and sewage pipes.
Outdoor pipes most likely to freeze may include:
Swimming pool supply lines
Water sprinkler lines
Other lines to keep and eye on in partially heated areas may include areas like:
Other problems the winter weather may cause could be ice dams on your roof. An ice dam is formed when snow melts unevenly on a roof and refreezes into a dam at the edge of the roof, near the eaves. This dam prevents any further snow melt from draining off of the roof. This standing water can back up under shingles, leak into a home, and cause significant water damage to ceilings, walls, and other areas. Ice dams can also tear off gutters and loosen shingles.
10 ways to prevent Christmas tree fires
Here is a list from the NFPA and FEMA's U.S. Fire Administration:
- When choosing a tree, look for the one that is fresh and has green needles that don't fall out. Brownish needles mean the tree is dried out and more prone to catch fire.
- Water your tree daily to prevent it from drying out.
- Check the manufacturer's labels to ensure you use only lights and decorations that are flame-retardant. Look for a nationally recognized testing laboratory, such as Underwriters Laboratories, Intertek or the Canadian Standards Association, according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission.
- Check holiday lights for frayed wires or excessive wear.
- Don't connect more than three strands of mini-string sets and a maximum of 50 bulbs for screw-in bulbs
- Keep your tree at least 3 feet away from any heat source, such as a fireplace, radiator, candles or lights.
- Make sure your tree is not blocking an exit. In case there is a fire, you want a way to get out.
- Always turn off lights on a tree before going to bed or leaving your home.
- Get rid of a tree when its needles start dropping. It means the tree is drying out.
- Check that your smoke alarm is working properly.
Call your Local SERVPRO of South Elkhart County at 574-533-2500 or go to our webpage at http://www.SERVPROsouthelkhartcounty.com
Fire and Smoke Damage Tips
- Limit movement of people in the structure to prevent soot participles from being embedded into upholstery and carpets.
- Keep hands clean. soot on hands can further soil upholstery, walls and woodwork.
- Place dry, colorfast towels on rugs,upholstery, and carpet traffic areas.
- If electricity is off, empty freezer and refrigerator completely, and prop doors open to prevent odors.
- Wipe soot from chrome on kitchen and bathroom faucets, trim and appliances then protect with light coating lubricant.
- Pour RV antifreeze into sinks, toilet bowls, holding tanks and tubs if heat is off during the freezing season.
- Wash off both sides of leaves on indoor plants.
- Change HVAC filter, but leave system off until checked by a trained professional.
- Tape double layers of cheesecloth over air registers to stop particles of soot from getting in or out of the HVAC system.
For all your cleaning and restoration needs call SERVPRO of South Elkhart County at 574-533-2500 or go to our webpage at http://www.SERVPROsouthelkhartcounty.com