Prevention is key
Flash floods from pop up storms can lead to water intrusion in your home. Proper maintenance and care for your home is key to ensuring that you don’t develop a mold problem. If you do develop a mildew or mold problem then it’s because you also have had a water intrusion. Here is a list of things to maintain around your home to prevent water intrusion.
- Gutters – ensure they are clean and free flowing. Make sure down spout lead away from the house.
- Landscaping – This is important especially for homes with basements and crawl spaces. Again ensure the water is lead away from the home.
- Roof – have it inspected once year. Check the rubber boots around vents ensure they are not cracked, split or dry rotted.
- Paint – cracked or peeling paint can allow moisture to seep into the dark places in the home and allow mold to grow. Paint not only looks good it acts as a moisture barrier.
- Sump pumps – are they in good working order what is the backup plan in case the power goes out?
- Caulking around windows – are the casings in your windows water tight?
- HVAC – have you had biannual maintenance performed? Insist they check the condensate drain line is working properly
- Moisture detectors around key sources of water that are prone to leak i.e. toilets, dish washers, laundry room, hot water heater, sinks and the refrigerator.
Doing all these things will not guarantee you never have a water damage, but if you do call SERVPRO of West Forsyth County 336-946-1131. It’s best to call us directly.
What is you plan for disaster?
If you walked into your place of business and stepped into ankle deep water what is the first thing you would do? Jokingly most have said turn around and walk back out. But as a business owner can you afford to do that? Can you afford to be closed? No. So, that is why every business owner needs a plan of attack when disaster strikes not just water damage but, fire, storm or even vandalism damage can cost you precious days of valuable production.
Can you get to your disaster recovery plan? Small businesses and large will sometimes have a notebook manual on how they are to operate in a crises situation. What if that manual is in the same room as the fire? SERVPRO’s ready App. Is available on your phone 24/7. Even if you are not on site you will have access to the phone numbers and personnel who can ensure that your business opens for business. You can download the and sign up for the app. HERE
Call Ed Dean at 336-946-1131 to help you get started on a free assessment to see if you are SERVPRO Ready.
Plan to stay in business
We all have insurance of some kind. For our family we pay it to take care of them weather it is health insurance or homeowners. It gives, or it should give you peace of mind to know that the money and things you have worked hard for are protected. What about where you work? What assurances do you have that if your company suffers a loss can they recover from it? Chances are that if you work for a large corporation they have all the insurance they think they need but do they have a plan? Small business need a plan just as much as large companies do.
Preparedness planning for your business is just as important as planning for the needs of your family. After all our work family is who we spend even more time with than our own. Recognize the types of risks you have for your business. Do you have the resources lined up to handle losses? Losses do not come just in water damage or fires. Thunderstorms can knock out power and cause loss of production. In North Carolina the government estimates business lose $4-$7 Billion dollars annually due to power failures.
Our free Emergency Ready Profile (ERP) helps discover where you may be vulnerable. It asks questions, reviews, and identifies key personnel that will be instrumental in getting back into business quickly. Not just SERVPRO of West Forsyth County but resources like electricians, plumbers, and decision makers that can make sure your business maintains continuity of production and profit.
Call Ed Dean today to ask about the ERP 336-946-1131
Is your home or business prone to flooding
Late spring and early summer is the time that we start to have those “popcorn” thunder showers. The heat of the day triggers them mostly in the afternoon. Most of the time they dump some rain make everything muggy and move on. But occasionally they dump too much water in a short time creating flash flooding situations. Flash floods occur when the drainage systems like storm drains and ditches get overwhelmed to quickly. Creeks and rivers can also cause a flooding issue when they receive more storm runoff than they can handle within their banks.
Unfortunately rising water is not usually covered by conventional homeowner’s insurance policies. For that you will need a flood policy. Know if you are susceptible to a flood. The State of NC has provided a great resource tool that is interactive and online. This can help you find if you live near a source that can flood your home or business.
Additional safety tips for storm and or flood damage
- Turn off the electricity at the main breaker or fuse box, even if the power is off in your community. That way, you can decide when your home is dry enough to turn it back on.
- Don’t ever drive through water that you can’t see the bottom of. Turn around don’t drown. You could lose control of your car in as little as 6 inches of water.
- Contact your insurance agent to discuss claims.
- Listen to your radio for information on assistance that may be provided by the state or federal government or other organizations.
- Be wary of people who drive through neighborhoods offering help in cleaning up or repairing your home. Call SERVPRO of West Forsyth County. We have the reputation, capability and expertise to handle your water mitigation and restoration of your home or business.
It is always best to call us directly 336-946-1131
The cost of doing a water damage wrong can cost you more
There is no such thing as a stupid question. Folks who may ask things that are common to you because it is part of your job every day may sound idiotic. For example asking a mechanic can you change the oil from the top of the engine? That person knows or has heard they need to change their oil but they don’t understand the mechanics of it (pun intended). We recently were asked if we could tarp a roof from the inside? Now this might sound like a dumb question, but when you think about it maybe this person wanted to trace the water and where it was coming from, maybe. It’s not the best way to find the leak but they were thinking outside the proverbial box.
When you feel like you need to ask questions about the maintenance of your home or business, are you qualified to handle it? If you do it yourself, will it save you time and or money? Will it be done right the first time? Does it come with a guarantee? These are all things to consider and if you want these things they should have value to you, the home owner. When wanting to tackle water damage yourself as a DIY’er, ask your self is this job over my head? Is this beyond my scope of expertise?
We have stated before that your mop is not as qualified as our equipment. Our truck mounted extractor, air movers, dehumidifiers, and most importantly our IICRC trained staff, have the qualified equipment and knowledge to handle any size disaster. The other point of calling in professional is to save money. Doing a water damage wrong, can cause mold, which can cost you more money in the long run.
When a major storm events hit the triad we sometimes get, dare I say it, flooded with calls. So it’s best to call us directly and quickly when you suspect a water damage in your home or business. Getting to the damage quickly can also save you money.
Call us directly at 336-946-1131 / 24 Hrs a day
Wild Fire Safety To Your Home
Research has determined that wild fires are natural phenomenon they may or may not not have been started naturally, but are useful to nature to renew the forest. However our homes are built in nature and we need to ensure that we are doing what we can to prevent the spread of wild fires to our living spaces. Most people think it’s the wall of fire that starts the house fire. But most of the time it is embers in the air that lands on combustible materials that causes a new fire to erupt.
We have talked before about the importance of keeping gutters cleaned for winter, but summer is equally important. Dry leaves on the roof are a perfect kindling to start a fire. So not only does keeping your gutters clean help prevent water damage it can help prevent fire damage. Most roofing materials are Class A fire resistant which means they can be exposed to a fire for two hours before they start to burn. When replacing your roof be sure that the roofing material is rated class A. There are three ratings and information regarding them can be found here.
Siding like clap board or wood shingles can also be combustible but new construction should also be rated A, B or C. Consider replacing with a fiber cement siding. If replacing all of the old siding is not a cost effective option, consider the bottom 1/3rd around your home. If embers hit the side of the house they will be less likely to ignite the siding that is noncombustible. Fiber cement siding can be stained to give the appearance of wood siding.
About your yard and flowerbeds, mulch is beautiful and a natural looking weed preventer. But it is also a combustible material especially when dry. Natural stone or brick chips are a perfect alternative. These types of materials should be what is next to your home and out to about five feet from it. 8-30 feet you can plant bushes and shrubs. Be sure that trees that are clustered together are clear of dead clippings and kindling. The thought is to reduce the intensity of a fire as it approaches your home and give you the best opportunity to have it run out of fuel to burn.
SERVPRO of West Forsyth County cares and hope you have a safe and happy summer!
IF you need our services call us directly at 336-946-1131
Being ready is better than being ruined
Your business has to be able to operate when you walk in. Do you operate on the weekends? What do you do when you unlock the door, head for the alarm system and you suddenly feel that your feet are wet? You just stepped in two inches of water. Downtime is expensive, and rent doesn’t stop nor do any of the other operational costs of doing business.
One solution is being prepared prior to stepping into a mess, is to have the SERVPRO READY app. It’s available in the Google Play and Apple iTunes store. This app places all the necessary resources for all the “what if” scenarios in the palm of your hand. You can call the experts at SERVPRO of West Forsyth County. We understand that you need to be operational ready quickly.
Depending on the source of the water you will need to call a plumber or a landscaper or maybe even someone who does waterproofing and structural repairs. The SERVPRO READY app can have those resources for you so that you can be ready to deal with unexpected emergencies.
If you do not already have the app and you would like assistance setting it up in the Winston Salem Forsyth County area feel free to call Ed Dean with SERVPRO of West Forsyth County 336-946-1131
Who can you trust with your home or business
Not all restoration companies are the same. A guy in a truck can come up to your home and say he will help you through a claim with your insurance company for roof damage. How do you know you can trust him? This is true also for mitigation and restoration companies how do you know you can trust the work will be done right? If you suspect a mold problem in your home and the mitigation company is performing its own air quality test is that a conflict of interest? Of course it is. So how do you go about choosing a trustworthy vendor to restore your home or business? In days before the internet you may have asked your family, neighbors or coworkers and you still might today. But now we have the ability to see what reputation a company has in the community and what the quality of work they perform is with the help of online reviews.
In our business getting reviews is somewhat difficult, not everyone wants to advertise the fact they have suffered a water or fire loss. With the help of satisfied customers we have garnered some of those fantastic reviews. With the help of the BBB our customers can place reviews with them and still be anonymous. The BBB is committed to telling consumers the trustworthiness of a company weather they are accredited or not.
SERVPRO of West Forsyth County has chosen to be an accredited member of the BBB in order to let our customers know that you can count on and trust, that we will complete your job with integrity and the standards that have earned us the positive reviews of customers before you. These include an A+ rating with the BBB. A 4.9 rated company on Facebook, and a 5 star reviewed company on Google.
Checking the damage after a storm
Were you disturbed from your sleep over the weekend? Storm season is here, and when cold and warm air collide it can cause devastating problems. Your local news station will keep you informed of the weather. But here are the signs of an approaching tornado.
Warning Signs that a Tornado May Develop
- A dark, often greenish, sky.
- Wall clouds or an approaching cloud of debris.
- Large hail often in the absence of rain.
- Before a tornado strikes, the wind may die down and the air may become very still.
- A loud roar similar to a freight train may be heard.
- An approaching cloud of debris, even if a funnel is not visible.
Everyone has a cell phone these days and now they alert you to when a tornado warning has been posted for your area. Don’t turn this feature off as it is meant to keep you informed and safe.
Once the danger has passed and the light of day allows, inspect the roof of your home. Look for upturned shingles and or missing shingles. If you suspect you have roof damage call a reputable roofer. Be sure to check their reputation on sites such as the BBB (Better Business Bureau) or Google Reviews. Never accept the word of a door to door sales pitch from someone saying you “have roof damage and they will help you get a new roof through your insurance.” These are often scams and reputable companies often do not have to go door to door. Know your deductible for your insurance and don’t file a claim without getting the opinion of your roofer. Talk to your agent they will help keep your premiums low by knowing when it’s right to make a claim.
After a heavy storm be sure to check low areas of your home. The basement is an area you want to ensure has not suffered water damage. If power was interrupted be sure the circuit breaker did not trip to the sump pump. Check to ensure that it is still in good working order. After the basement is flooded is no time to find out it failed.
Of course if water breaches your home or office call us right away to make water damage “Like it never even happened.” Call us directly at 336-946-1131
Pet Fire Safety
We think of fire damage mostly in the winter, because some Winston Salem folks use wood stoves and fire places for heat. But because we normally eat three meals a day, we cook and therefore have a risk of fire anytime of the year. Unattended cooking fires are the leading cause of fires in the home according to the NFPA.
We also have a risk during a power outage. Rather than use flashlights we use candles and lanterns during these extended periods without power. However the top three days for candle fires in the home are New Year's Day, Christmas, and New Year's Eve. Fire fighters across the US responded to approximately 8200 fires started by a candle each year between the years of 2012-2016. 60% or 3 out of 5 were because the candle was too close to combustible materials.
Pets can cause fires also, Preventative Vet reported in 2016 that pets started 1000 house fires. That’s more than 10% of the fires first responders were called out to put out. The biggest tip SERVPRO of West Forsyth can give you is never leave flames or cooking devices unattended. Be sure to reduce the number of cords that your pet and especially puppies can get to. Coat exposed cords with a deterrent like a bitter spray. If you do use candles ensure that the animal can’t jump up near it or tip it over. Dogs are attracted to food, couple food near a gas stove and you have a recipe for disaster.
We hope that you never have to deal with a fire loss, or worse the loss of a pet due to fire. But if fire affects your home or business call us directly at 336-946-1131