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How Can I Prevent Water Damage Caused By Plumbing Failures?

6/23/2020 (Permalink)

plaques on two walls, servpro The Plaques Indicate the Broad Range of SERVPRO Services for Durham Area Homes

Certified Restoration Technicians Eliminate Water Damage From Durham Homes

Durham homeowners may be wondering what they can do to prepare for a plumbing-related disaster. A 1/8" pipe leak alone can bring dozens of gallons of water each day into your home. Without fast action, the moisture brought in by this kind of disaster can skyrocket home repair and replacement costs.

If your Durham home needs water damage mitigation services, SERVPRO technicians are available 24/7 to restore your property to a preloss state as efficiently as possible. Your local SERVPRO team is trained to prioritize repair over replacement when feasible to minimize your property loss. Restoration services extend to a variety of structural materials and belongings, including:

  • Documents, electronics, and valuables
  • Apparel and fabrics
  • Upholstery and drapes
  • Carpeting, floorboards, and subfloors
  • Drywall, insulation, wall studs, and ceiling joists

What Causes Pipe Leak Water Damage?

There are several types of pipe leaks that can release varying amounts of water into your home. Here are the most frequent causes of residential pipe leaks:

  • Loose fittings and connections. Every so often, pipe connections loosen and erode, and require occasional tightening or replacement.
  • Unregulated water pressure. Water pressure that is too high can quickly erode pipes and create leaks.
  • Pipes without insulation. In wintry weather, pipes that lack insulation can quickly become damaged by ice buildup inside. Ice expands inside the pipes, which can put enough strain on the plumbing to cause it to burst.
  • Mechanical failures. Faulty installation or repair measures can lead to future water damage incidents.

SERVPRO technicians are trained in the mitigation of pipe leak water damage, no matter how small or large the disaster. Commercial-grade extraction, sanitation, and drying tools can prevent mold growth and structural damage to your property.

What Prevents Plumbing-Related Water Damage?

The key to preventing water damage from pipe leaks and plumbing failures in your home is reducing the stress on the system. Consider these tips for lessening the likelihood and frequency of plumbing failures in your home:

Soften Your Water

Lessen stress on your pipes by installing a water softener. The high amount of minerals in hard water can corrode the plumbing and create buildup inside water supply lines. Not sure if you have hard water? Check your locale’s most recent EPA water quality report. Water with minerals over 140 parts per million is considered to be hard.

The traditional solution for this is in the use of sodium-based softening agents. This process works by creating an exchange of ions between negatively-charged resin beads in the softener unit and positively-charged calcium and magnesium in the water. The sodium makes a brine that isolates minerals from the resin beads and washes them down the drain.

More recent developments allow for the use of electronic softening units, which can dissolve minerals with electromagnetic pulses.

Regulate Water Pressure

Monitor the water pressure in your pipes—normal levels for residential water pressure range from approximately 30 to 50 psi. Levels above 60 psi can cause problems for Durham residents, but this can be lowered with professional intervention or the installation of a pressure reducer. Residential water pressure should not exceed 80 psi.

Before adjusting your water pressure, check with neighbors to see if they have the same problem. If the problem is with the municipal water system, you may not even need to modify your water pressure.

Adjusting your own water pressure is a relatively simple process:

  • Find the bell-shaped pressure regulator near your home’s water meter. Contact your utility provider if you are unsure where it is located on your property.
  • Use a crescent wrench to loosen the lock nut somewhat. Turn the adjustment screw clockwise to increase water pressure and counterclockwise to decrease it. Adjust pressure one to two revolutions at a time.
  • Test the pressure by letting a faucet run for a minute before making further adjustments.

What Does SERVPRO Use to Salvage My Home After Water Damage?

SERVPRO technicians tackle water damage in several steps. One of the most crucial is moisture measurement. Several tools are used to evaluate moisture levels in, on, and even behind surfaces, such as:

  • Infrared cameras
  • Penetrating and nonpenetrating sensors and meters
  • Thermohygrometers

These measurements help technicians determine many crucial elements of the restoration process, including:

  • Calculating drying goals for various surfaces
  • Determining the placement of centrifugal air movers
  • Placement and implementation of dehumidifiers based on the type of device, room size, and relative humidity, among other factors.

Without accurate calculations, the structural drying process can create secondary damages that can increase loss and slow down the mitigation process.

SERVPRO of North Durham strives to keep your home looking, “Like it never even happened.” You can call (919) 467-0880 for disaster mitigation service that can start within hours of your initial contact.

Can My Walls Be Saved After Storm Damage In Durham?

6/16/2020 (Permalink)

Water damaged wall If you don’t act quickly, water damage in your home can escalate.Contact our experienced SERVPRO team right away.

SERVPRO Can Restore and Repair Damaged Walls in Your Durham Home Professionally and Efficiently.

Storms can wreak havoc on Durham homes, causing flooding and destruction to the interior of your home. Structural damage is a risk when this happens. Our IICRC (Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification) technicians provide immediate mitigation to repair and restore your residence from storm damage. 

Why do I need professional services?

Flood damage in Durham that gets inside the home and hits the structure hard needs water mitigation fast. In certain flood situations replacing the drywall is all that may be necessary. This is not the case in a severe flood caused by heavy storms. In states with high humidity, the moisture in the air adds to the overall moisture. It is figured in with the moisture from the flood when assessing what needs accomplishing. Floodwater carries contaminants that need to be addressed. If left unchecked, the following may occur:

  • Mold
  • Structural damage spreads
  • Spread of viral or bacterial contamination 

Preventing Further Damage

 SERVPRO stops flood damage in its tracks. Moisture sensors detect invisible moisture. To keep wetness from spreading, the technicians will make flood cuts six inches above the water damage. If the damage is severe enough, controlled demolition may be required. Water extraction, either with truck pumps or portable pumps remove water. Impacted wall cavities get dried using air movers. Dehumidifiers further help dry out the walls and air. Repairing the walls come next:

  • Clean and decontaminate surfaces
  • Treat carpets with antimicrobials
  • Replace walls
  • Repaint walls 
  • Leave it “Like it never even happened.”

 While it seems like everything is damaged beyond hope from floodwaters in most cases, that is not true. Our IICRC technicians are Faster To Any Size Disaster. We repair and restore wall and structural damage left in the wake of floodwaters.

Contact SERVPRO of North Durham at (919) 467-0880 for flood damage help today.

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What are the Dangers of a Toilet Backup in My Durham Business?

6/15/2020 (Permalink)

Boots Standing in a Flooded property with Vinyl Wood Floors “Like it never even happened.”

The Dangers of a Toilet Backup in Durham

Water containing sewage is a hazard for your customers and employees, call SERVPRO to clean and sanitize your Durham Property.

A water loss big enough to close the business for cleanup is always severe. Wet floors can lead to slip and fall accidents, foul odors, and if left too long, mold can become an issue. When the water contains sewage, the losses can be more significant as anything absorbed by the water requires disposal as a biohazard. That is why it is crucial to outsource the tasks of cleanup and sanitation to a professional restoration services company.

What are Losses Can I Expect After a Commercial Water Damage With Sewage?

SERVPRO technicians handling commercial water damage in Durham businesses keep safety at a maximum and losses as minimal as possible. They move out items within the loss area that can be cleaned and sanitized for reuse. The most common damages to a structure and contents are:
    •    Portions of sheetrock that wicked contaminated water
    •    Seepage under tile flooring
    •    Loss of stored items or stock

How Does the Cleanup Process Work?

SERVPRO techs work to limit the upheaval that can come with the mitigation process, and they work to extract the water and dry the contents of the business in place as much as possible.
    •    Chairs may get removed while desks get placed on blocks
    •    Datacenter and network equipment might get removed off-site for testing before reuse if it was within the loss area
    •    Non-porous items get inspected for hand cleaning and sanitizing for reuse to lessen the cost of replacement items

The technicians extract any remaining water and solid waste. They then scope the property to determine all areas of water migration, and this action ensures nothing gets left behind. After drying, the techs thoroughly sanitize the property with antibacterial and antimicrobial cleaning agents, so it is safe for employees and customers.

SERVPRO of North Durham at (919) 467-0880 has certified techs that bring the latest equipment and use advanced methods to perform commercial water damage cleanup and get your business reopened quickly.

How To Fix a Flooded Basement

6/11/2020 (Permalink)

Completely flooded basement. It is visible line showing maximum water level higher than 7 feet. Flooded basement in Durham, NC

How To Fix a Flooded Basement

When you experience a basement flood in Durham, NC, you may want to do all you can to get your business back to normal as quickly as possible. The longer the water sits on surfaces, the more damage it can do. Working with an emergency disaster response team that is faster to any size disaster can make the process smoother and less stressful for all involved. Knowing a few things to do can help you get through the process with confidence.

1. Call a Professional
Your insurance coverage is likely to include water damage from a basement flood. You should contact your agent and a professional remediation team. SERVPRO usually works directly with your insurance company to ensure a smooth process for you.

2. Stay Out of the Water
If you can safely do so, stop the source of the water by turning off the water to the area. If more severe flooding has occurred, turn off the electricity to the area. Do not enter the water unless you have to and always wear rubber boots or walk on something above the water. Never enter a flooded area with water above the electrical outlets. You may need the fire department to turn off the power when it gets higher than the outlets.

3. Work With Your Restoration Company
When the remediation team arrives on site they will most likely assess the damage and begin the water extraction process. They may use industrial blowers to dry the area quickly, which helps keep mold from forming. They will usually repair or remove any damaged structural items. As the last step, your remediation team may replace damaged items such as carpet or drywall.
Finding that you have a basement flood can be a difficult situation. Knowing that there are teams of people that can help with the entire process may give you the confidence to get your business back to normal as quickly as possible.

How To Deal With the Aftermath of a Flood

5/27/2020 (Permalink)

Claim form for fill out To ensure a quick response time, file everything correctly the first time

How To Deal With the Aftermath of a Flood

Filing an insurance claim for a flood seems straightforward, but every insurer is different. Local water mitigation companies in Chester, NC, can help guide you through the process, but it is best to know several things before a disaster strikes.

  1. Know your responsibilities
  2. Fill out correct forms
  3. Prepare for adjuster visit
  4. Perform minor repairs
  5. Ask questions

Know Your Responsibilities
Every insurance company has rules in place for homeowners. You need to understand the expectations of your insurer to ensure the timely resolution of your insurance claim. Do you need to call the police? How long do you have before filing deadlines? What's your deductible? Know the answer to these questions before filing a claim for a water disaster, like a pipe burst.

Fill Out Correct Forms
As most homeowners know, the claims process is long and tedious. To ensure a quick response time, file everything correctly the first time. Forgetting a signature or submitting an incomplete form will only delay the process.

Prepare for Adjuster Visit
An insurance adjuster investigates every policy claim. The adjuster's job is to determine the value of the claim, and how much the insurer is liable for. Especially with water damage claims, the circumstances around the disaster are crucial for determining liability.

Perform Minor Repairs
While the insurance company may approve your claim, any damage following the initial incident may not be covered. It is necessary to mitigate further loss by performing minor repairs. For example, shut off water supply lines if a pipe burst or cover a hole in your roof to prevent more water damage.

Ask Questions
If you do not understand your responsibilities as the homeowner, or you are confused about policy coverage, ask questions. Being informed is a crucial part of ensuring you receive appropriate coverage.
An insurance claim is a necessary part of disaster recovery. While some may find the process intimidating, it really comes down to understanding your policy, mitigating further loss, and asking questions.

4 Steps To Take When You Smell Natural Gas

5/27/2020 (Permalink)

Closeup shot of blue fire from domestic kitchen stove. Gas cooker with burning flames propane gas. A gas fire will likely create a mess in your home

Consider The Following Steps If You Smell Gas

A gas fire in a home is something that can often be avoided with the right actions. The key is to know what to do if you smell natural gas in your house in Upland, NC. A little bit of knowledge will go a long way toward keeping your loved ones and your property safe from a devastating fire.
There could be a number of reasons you smell gas in your home. Some situations are relatively easy to address, while others demand the help of professionals. Consider the following steps if you smell gas:

1. Locate the Leak
Safely investigate the most likely sources. Is a stove burner on without the flame? Has the pilot light gone out on a gas appliance? In these situations, you can simply turn the burner off or relight the pilot light and you will be a hero for the day.

2. Shut Off the Gas
If the leak is coming from another source, such as a gas line, shut off the valve if you can find it. Residential gas lines typically have shut-off valves in a number of locations throughout your home, in part to prevent a home gas fire. Once the gas is off, increase ventilation in the home and then call the gas company for repair.

3. Consider Evacuation
It is not safe to stay too long in a house that has a gas leak. A gas explosion could result. Therefore, you may have to make a determination on when to get out of the house and let the experts take over. If the smell of gas is strong or if you cannot find the leak it is probably time to evacuate.

4. Contact Remediation Experts
A gas fire will likely create a mess in your home. For professional cleanup, call a local fire mitigation franchise to rid your home of fire, soot, and smoke damage.

Wet Documents: Tips for Restoration After a Flood

5/12/2020 (Permalink)

Wet documents In the event of a flood, wet documents are a nightmare situation for many business owners

Tips for Restoration After a Flood

In the event of a flood, wet documents are a nightmare situation for many business owners. Whether it's legal files, photographs, maps, or other types of essential documents, having a few things on hand and a solid plan of action can alleviate the burden of cleanup. To expedite the restoration process, you'll need:

  • Paper towels
  • Adjustable fans
  • Paperweights

Most urgently, you'll need to get the documents away from water as soon as possible. Use proper safety gear here, especially if the floodwater could be contaminated. At this point, you should assess whether you can restore your documents now or later. If you don't have the considerable amount of time or space needed to handle the damaged materials, or if the water is polluted, you should plan to deal with it later.

Restoring Documents Later
Freeze your wet documents in plastic bags to prevent mold. Lay them flat in the freezer to prevent further damage. Documents should not be held here long, so prepare your restoration workspace accordingly. If there's any concern about bacteria in the flooding, or if the documents are damaged beyond simpler drying methods, you'll want to call document restoration professionals in the Marcus Hook, NC, area. Seasoned experts will have technology that sanitizes, digitizes, or otherwise recovers your important files.

Restoring Documents Now
If you're able to manage document drying now, you'll want to first decrease the humidity in your workspace. Eliminate excess water by running a fan in the same room and allowing paper towels to soak up any moisture in your documents. Make sure the paper towels you lay documents on are plain — no designs, as these could bleed and transfer. You'll also want to hold down your documents with some sort of weight to prevent them from curling at the edges.
Cleaning water-damaged materials is a risky, time-consuming restoration process. With careful action and help when you need it, your wet documents can often still be saved.

5 Common Questions About Mold Removal

5/12/2020 (Permalink)

Removing mould from the wall in the house. Hand in blue glove tears off wallpapers damaged by fungus Mold removal can be a frustrating concern to Chester, NC, commercial property owners

Mold removal can be a frustrating concern to Chester, NC, commercial property owners, especially if they've never had to deal with the issue before. The good news is that you don't have to tackle mold growth on your own. Commercial cleanup and mediation professionals have training and supplies to safely and thoroughly deal with the problem. It's not unusual to have questions about the process; here are some of the most common:

What is Mold?

Molds are fungi that thrive in a variety of environments, both inside and outside, but colonies are most likely to blossom in warm, humid conditions. Spores increase and spread mold as they are carried on gusts of air, people's feet, and animals.

How did it get in the building?

Spores may be carried in through the air conditioning and heating system, or it may travel in on the clothes and shoes of the people who live and work in the building. Once inside, the spores establish colonies wherever they have access to oxygen and moisture.

How do I know there's mold?

You may have a problem before you ever get a hint that colonies exist in the basement or behind the walls. Unpleasant odors and dark stains that appear on walls, floors, or ceilings are indications of mold growth. As soon as you suspect its presence, contact professionals for mold removal.

Why is it important to remove mold?

When left alone, mold can spread quickly, eating its way along elements of the building, including drywall, insulation, carpeting, and most other materials used in the creation and decoration of a building.

How long does it take to remove mold?

The length of each project is affected by many factors such as how widely it has spread, the source of moisture, and the type of mold. Some types of mold, such as black mold, may require special methods of disinfection and containment.
Mold removal is just the first step in correcting this issue. The next step involves correcting the leaks or damages that lead to moisture where it shouldn't have been. Finally, you'll need to focus on mold prevention. Chester, NC, professionals may provide valuable preventative steps.

4 Ways To Quicken Storm Recovery

4/29/2020 (Permalink)

Wooden floor wet and with mold growth due to floodwaters Storm damage in Rocky Knoll, NC

4 Ways To Quicken Storm Recovery

If your home in Rocky Knoll, NC, takes on floodwaters, you will want to act quickly to contain the damage to a home. Flood insurance may help pay for some of the expenses, but quick action can limit those expenses, improve safety for you and your family members, and result in a faster recovery. Fortunately, several actions you take will accelerate the cleanup process.

1. Don't Wait for Insurance. To have work done on your home after a storm or flood don't wait for the insurance adjuster to inspect your home or approve repairs. Instead, be sure to document all work and all damages in writing and with photos. With flood damage, the longer you wait for cleanup the more likely expenses will rise.
2. Do Call for Help. Flood waters in your home need to be removed quickly. The waters should be considered contaminated and dangerous to human health and to property. A qualified storm mitigation company has the experience and equipment to remove dirty water from your house. Trained technicians will clean the home in accordance with the highest standards and will arrive Faster to any size disaster. A professional company will help you coordinate claims with your flood insurance provider.
3. Do Limit Mold Damage. Water damage can also lead to mold growth in a home. The longer you wait the more likely mold will spread throughout a home and even infiltrate the HVAC system. Mold has the ability to spread in as little as 48 hours after a flood, making quick action even more critical.
4. Don't Hold Off on Cleanup. The longer you allow water to soak into a home, the more damage it causes and the more expenses you will face. Whether or not you have flood insurance, it is always smart to minimize expenses and speed up recovery. It will allow you to get back into your home and resume your life.

What Will Your Commercial Property Insurance Cover?

4/20/2020 (Permalink)

commercial insurance Commercial insurance

What Will Your Commercial Property Insurance Cover?

You could go years without having to make a property insurance claim for your business. However, when you need it most, your commercial insurance plan will be there to provide relief from emergencies and disasters in your building. Make sure you read through your policy and understand what your coverage entails. This way, you won't be surprised when you file a claim.

Fires
Your insurance coverage should take care of any fire damage your building suffers. An exception would be if you started the fire on purpose. Even if a fire starts in an adjacent building in Weaver, NC, but yours still suffers smoke damage, your policy should honor your claim.

Water Damage
Be careful when you examine your commercial insurance policy when you get to this portion. While your plan will cover certain types of water damage, it won't cover flooding from a sewer backup, a break in the main water line or an overflowing body of water. Your policy will accept your claim if the damage occurred from:

  • A leaky or burst pipe
  • A sudden, unexpected malfunction of an appliance such as a dishwasher or water heater
  • Defective plumbing equipment

Storms
Your commercial policy should also take effect if your building suffers damage from a storm. This could happen from heavy winds blowing a tree on your building or hail ruining part of the room.

Other Limitations
Property insurance won't cover earthquakes. If you live in an area where these are more possible, make sure you speak to your agent about adding this coverage to your plan. Insurance will deny your claim if there is damage due to your neglect and failure to properly maintain systems and materials in the building. In this case, you would have to pay a professional disaster cleanup company out of your own pocket.
You may not think much about your commercial insurance until you need it. Study this list so you are aware of what it covers.