Recent Storm Damage Posts

Freezing Rain

11/20/2019 (Permalink)

Frozen House Frozen Rain stuck to a house

With colder temperatures moving in, the Hunt Valley and Harford County areas are beginning to see their first glimpses of snowfall and experience the first freezes of the season. During this time, the chance for freezing rain becomes heightened due to cold ground temperatures. Freezing rain occurs when the atmosphere is too warm to produce snow, so the precipitation falls as rain and freezes into ice upon hitting a freezing surface, such as the ground, roads, or bridges. Freezing rain can be dangerous due to its effects on roadways, sidewalks, and even power lines. For this reason, it is important to understand how to deal with freezing rain and what precautions you can take before a storm producing freezing rain.

   Freezing rain is significantly more difficult to deal with than snow or other winter precipitation, as it cannot simply be shoveled. Because the rain forms ice upon hitting the ground, surfaces such as driveways, sidewalks, and roadways can become covered in a layer of ice that is not always easily visible. Icy roadways and surfaces often simply appear to be wet, which can be deceiving, as driving or walking on ice is significantly more dangerous than driving or walking on a wet surface. Another threat that freezing rain poses is the accumulation of freezing rain on power lines and branches. As the rain freezes into ice on the cold surfaces of power lines and tree branches, accumulate large amounts of ice, which weigh down upon them, eventually causing them to break. This can leave homes or businesses without power until power lines are repaired and risk damage due to heavy, falling tree branches.

   With these dangers considered, it is beneficial to take precautions prior to a storm that is forecasted to produce freezing rain. Firstly, purchasing salt will be helpful so that you can salt your home or business’ sidewalks and driveways, which will begin working to melt the ice as soon as it hits the ground. Because freezing rain can cause power lines to break, your home or business could lose power for a certain amount of time. The ice produced by the freezing rain can also make it unsafe to leave your home until it has melted. In either of these cases, stocking up on essentials such as batteries, flashlights, toilet paper, bottled water, and blankets will alleviate the need to venture out of the house for those essential items while it is unsafe to go anywhere.

Surviving Prolonged Power Outages

10/11/2019 (Permalink)

Cloud This could cause major damage to your home.

With the wind whipping, causing flash flooding and fallen trees, shattering windows, and damaging power lines in its path, we all fear the loss of electricity during a strong storm. Power can be knocked out for a few minutes or even seconds, but if enough damage is sustained, power can be lost for a longer period of time. Electricity provides us with many opportunities, from heating and cooling to preserving our refrigerated food. Without power, everyday tasks, such as communicating with others, storing food, and obtaining necessities, become more difficult. Considering the following tips in order to keep your family safe while you wait for the power to return.

Before the Losing Power

In the event of an emergency, you may need to utilize your cell phone. Without a method of charging, phone battery can deteriorate quickly, so cutting down on cell phone use can help to preserve the battery. One way to do this is to write down the numbers and addresses of important people or local hospitals ahead of time. Keep extra batteries at hand for electronic devices such as flashlights and radios. Preparing and eating food should also be an important consideration, as power outages take away our ability to cook or refrigerate food. To have food available, stock cabinets with items such as crackers or power bars that are non-perishable. Finally, have a back-up plan in mind for medications that require refrigeration in the event that your refrigerator is out of commission for an extended period of time.

During the Power Outage

Before scrambling to hook up a generator, remember that they should be as far away from your home as possible. Generators emit high carbon monoxide concentration levels, which can be deadly if the generator is placed within the home or garage. as high carbon monoxide concentration emitted from the generator can be deadly. Besides any electrical appliances being powered by the generator, all other electrical appliances should be unplugged, as they could suffer damage during power surges. Food inside of your refrigerator will spoil once the refrigerator loses its cool temperature, so it is crucial to keep refrigerator and freezer doors closed in order to preserve the food inside. Gas stoves can be used to heat food, as they can operate without power, but they should not be used to heat your home.

In the event that your home undergoes any serious damage, from flooding to ceiling leaks, call SERVPRO Hunt Valley in order to make it like it never even happened.

Hurricane Season: Are You Prepared?

9/3/2019 (Permalink)

A structure being destroyed by hurricane storm winds Hurricane Damage

Hurricane Season: Are You Prepared?

September is on our doorstep and therefore, hurricane season is approaching quickly. Summoning strong winds, heavy downpours, and major flooding, hurricanes can wreak havoc on your home. September is also National Preparedness Month, a time when homeowners across the United States can focus on preparing their homes for hurricane season in addition to other natural disasters. Protecting your home from devastation during a hurricane begins with learning the most effective methods of keeping your home’s exterior in top condition.

Prior to hurricane season, it is a good idea to consider your home’s risk of being impacted by a storm, which depends on where you live. For example, if you live in a coastal area, your risk is elevated and you should take extra precautions. It is also important to understand what exactly your homeowner’s insurance covers. Make sure that your policy covers flood damage and rebuild costs if your home suffers devastating damage.

Before a storm, examine your roof and gutters. Missing or loose shingles are a red flag that your roof is damaged and may not be able to handle a strong storm. If your roof is already in poor condition, it’s more susceptible to damage from a hurricane. In addition to replacing shingles, it may also be helpful to seal your roof. Checking your gutters to make sure that they are clear of any debris will help assure that water will drain properly. If your gutters are clogged, water is more likely to splash up against the roof, imposing water damage on the roof.

Hurricanes can bring heavy rains and considerable flooding, so keeping as much water as possible out of your home can help to limit water damage. One effective way to prevent water from entering your home is to use sandbags, which divert flood water away from your home. Finally, check that your windows are sealed properly. Seals can break under the pressure of weather, such as intense summer heat. Without functioning seals on windows, rain water can seep into your home. Call a professional to ensure that your windows will be properly sealed before hurricane season hits.

Urban Flooding

7/22/2019 (Permalink)

With the prevalence of urban developments in our society today, flooding in urban areas is quite common. Cities are prone to flooding due to their lack of soil. Rain and flood water should theoretically be absorbed by soil, but since soil is scarcely found in cities, all of the water must be drained through draining and sewage systems beneath city streets.

This particular type of flooding can have detrimental effects on daily life, as standing water in city streets can block roads, preventing people from getting to work or school. A phenomenon known as “dancing drain covers” can occur when pressure or flood water builds up in drainage systems, causing covers to elevate off of the street level and shift their position off of the holes. This can prove to be dangerous, as vehicles attempting to drive on city streets will encounter those holes in the street and pedestrians could fall into the holes if they do not notice the absence of a cover.

When flooding hits urban areas, the majority of those affected usually do not receive the attention given to massive floods from hurricanes or major rivers, even though the damage may be just as serious. Therefore, it is imperative to understand the risk of flooding in your area if you live or work in an urban area. Coastal cities or cities situated near rivers are at a greater risk for flooding due to their proximity to bodies of water that could cause high tides or overflow respectively when impacted by heavy rain. If your home is located in an area that is prone to flooding, consider creating an emergency flood kit, filled with food, water, batteries, and flashlights in the event of a flood emergency in your city.

Job of the Quarter: Q3 2019

7/17/2019 (Permalink)

Ken Matejek and our storm team celebrating their last night as SERVPRO heroes in the Iowa floods

We typically use this portion of our quarterly newsletter to describe a particular job we produced that sparked an out of the ordinary sense of pride and accomplishment by our team members. After reviewing the losses we have serviced throughout the 2nd quarter of 2019, it quickly became apparent that is was not just a singular job, but a new branch of our franchises’ business that has brought a sense of achievement to our team. 

Ken Matejek has been an owner/operator of SERVPRO of Plymouth/Wareham, Massachusetts for 10 years. He bleeds green and believes wholeheartedly in the SERVPRO brand, but found what brought him the most joy and gratification was in helping those folks across the country affected by catastrophic storm situations. Ken took the leap of faith to simplify and focus his life on what he truly enjoyed. It was bittersweet, but he closed the doors to his Massachusetts franchise and began a partnership with Team Wall to make his passion for helping people in need a reality. 

Since our partnership’s inception earlier this year, Ken and members  of our travel storm team have helped service losses all over the country. They have been a part of Chicago’s deep freeze in February, Minnesota and Iowa’s spring floods in March, a microburst of flooding in June affecting a small portion of Central New Jersey, and most recently the DC floods this July. Between all of these storm travel experiences, we have helped over 115 homeowners nationwide make it “Like it Never Even Happened”. We are thankful Ken took that leap of faith to join our team and create a residential catastrophic storm response team that makes such a difference throughout our country. We’re looking forward to highlighting many more of their SERVPRO hero stories.

Surviving Summer Storms

7/15/2019 (Permalink)

Torrential rain and flash flooding hit the nation’s capital and various areas of Maryland, notably Frederick, Maryland, during the July 4th holiday weekend. The tremendous amount of rain that the thunderstorm carried caused widespread flooding, which transformed streets into rivers and caused even The White House basement to flood. Thunderstorms are most common during the summer due to the surplus of moisture in the air as well as rising warm air. These two factors combined together create prime conditions for thunderstorms. With their prevalence throughout the summer season and sporadically during the rest of the year, it is important to understand the threats to homes and businesses posed by the lightning and flash flooding brought by thunderstorms.

Damage Caused by Lightning

Lightning can cause both physical and electrical damage to homes and businesses if the building is directly hit by lightning during a thunderstorm. Lightning can burn through roofs, rip shingles or gutters from the building, and even tear into attics. In terms of electrical damage, lightning can increase the risk of an electrical fire igniting. Electronic appliances inside of your home, such as computers and refrigerators, can be harmed or destroyed if left plugged into an outlet during a thunderstorm.

Damage Caused by Flash Flooding

When a flood strikes your home or business, especially one like that which dumped excessive amounts of rain on Frederick, Maryland and Washington, D.C this past weekend, water levels can rise quickly and inflict a significant amount of damage. The flood water can carry mud and sediment, therefore contaminating the water and whatever it touches in your home or business. From this water damage, mold can grow and spread if the affected area is not remediated quickly. Flood water commonly affects drywall, flooring, and electrical systems such as cooling and heating systems, so it will be crucial to assess these areas for damage after a flood. On a larger scale, flood water can move houses or buildings off of their foundation, so be sure to watch for signs of that as well.

What to Do After the Storm

Immediately following the storm, survey your home or building for any visible indicators of lightning or water damage. This includes making sure that electrical breakers, outlets, and light switches are still functioning, checking plumbing systems for any leakage, and looking for any visible signs of water damage to items within the house or building. While cleaning up any damage, be sure to turn off all water and electrical systems so that when the electricity is restored, the water and electricity do not react with one another, which would result in further damage.

Flooding in Iowa

6/22/2019 (Permalink)

This May, SERVPRO crews traveled to Burlington, Iowa, after 13 inches of rain inundated the region over a 2-day period. Along with rain, golf ball-sized hail, high winds, and tornadoes rocked the area, resulting in widespread flooding as well as the flooding of nearby rivers.

At the time, Iowa also happened to be recovering from a major snow melt, which flooded the Missouri River earlier in the year. A record-breaking 25 inches of snow fell in Des Moines, Iowa during February of this year. After the extensive snowfall, the ground was unable to absorb any more liquid due to the soil saturation, and the 13 inches of rain spread across the ground, flooding highways, roads, and homes. SERVPRO received approximately 30 job files and three crews were sent to Iowa for this restoration.

Flooding can contaminate and damage drywall, support beams, and the foundation of homes. The damage to homes consisted of wet finished basements that range from 500 square ft to 3,000 square ft, wet flooring, walls, and content. The risk for mold to grow is most heightened during the first 24 hours of the flooding, so remediation had to be hasty.

The most rewarding aspect of working the Iowa storm was the ability to help flood victims’ lives return to normal as well as the good feeling that arises from helping those affected by the floods!

Broken Pipes in Chicago

6/22/2019 (Permalink)

In Chicago, Illinois, five consecutive days of  -50 degree temperatures froze over the windy city, turning The Chicago River to ice in its path. These frigid temperatures were then followed by a heat wave just shortly after the deep freeze, with temperatures soaring into the upper 40s and 50s. This radical shift in temperature caused Chicago homeowners’ pipes to break.

This occurrence is not, however, specific only to Chicago. Pipes can burst and initiate flooding wherever conditions are favorable. The water carried by pipes tends to freeze over when faced with negative temperatures, so when those subzero temperatures rise, the water begins to thaw and the pressure inside of the pipes increases until it reaches its maximum. The pipes then burst, resulting in flooding.

Flooding caused by burst pipes can trigger a wide range of water damage: carpets and even walls can be prone to water damage as a result of burst pipes and basements can flood. Mold commonly grows in flood-damaged homes or damp areas, as the moisture allows for mold to grow and multiply. To protect against mold, objects that cannot be cleaned, such as drywall or ceiling tiles, should be removed, while items such as glass or ceramic may be cleaned.

SERVPRO was presented with about 30 job files and three crews were required to confront the issue. Among the factors motivating the crews to make the journey to Chicago were the elation surrounding the prospect of helping victims to recover and devising a plan to combat the widespread flooding.

How to Maintain a Sump Pump

9/24/2018 (Permalink)

Sump pump ready to prevent flooding in Towson North, MD

A sump pump is a handy tool, especially in Towson North, MD, that helps to prevent flooding; however, it does require a certain level of pump maintenance to ensure that it is always operating to its full capability. To maintain your pump, there are six areas that you should check before severe weather hits.

1. GFCI

Every so often, it is important to check that the Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter (GFCI) that your unit is plugged into is properly working. To ensure the outlet is working correctly simply plug any electronic into it and make sure that you can power it on.

2. Discharge Pipe

As an essential part of any pump operation, the discharge pipe can become clogged by debris, like dirt and gravel, so it is necessary to inspect the pipe and clean out any blockages.

3. Intake Screen

Like the discharge pipe, the intake screen of your pump can become clogged with debris and will need to be cleaned once in a while to ensure the free flow of water.

4. Float Component

The float mechanism in the sump pump housing can become obstructed, which means that it will not activate the pump mechanism. This area of the pump should be inspected regularly for debris to ensure proper operation.

5. Pump

The pump mechanism can be tested by merely pouring a bucket of water into the pump basin. As the float rises in the water, it should activate the pump. If the pump does not activate and there is no debris, you may want to call in a professional to inspect it.

6. Battery Backup

Many pumps come with a battery backup. If your pump is one of these types, then every few years, 2 to 3, you will want to replace the battery.

A sump pump, while an essential tool in the prevention of home flooding, is not without its quirks, and it is normal to have to perform routine maintenance to keep it functioning as intended.

Don’t Blame the Rain: Other Ways Storms Can Damage Your Business

8/22/2018 (Permalink)

Pipe break after significant rain and storm can cause flooding in your home

When a huge storm rolls through Towson, MD, you might worry most about heavy rains. After all, significant rainfall can find its way into your building and flood your office. However, this isn’t the only flooding that can occur, nor is it the only concern you should have with storms. It’s important to be aware of dangers such as a burst pipe, or flooding situations so you can prepare and act appropriately.

Pipes Burst

Within the plumbing and water systems of your office building, there is a network of pipes carrying water, sewage, and possibly other chemicals throughout the facility. A burst pipe could empty gallon upon gallon of water into your building, leaving standing water and severe damage. Here are a few ways in which pipes burst:

• Pressure buildup
• Corrosion
• Extremely cold temperatures

If a winter storm brings low temperatures, you may be at risk for these issues. Make sure your building has sufficient insulation and that you drain any outside lines before winter hits.

Pipes Freeze

If your building pipes do freeze, you need to act quickly to ensure they don’t burst and cause flooding. A professional restoration company can help you clean up the mess and mitigate damage, but you don’t want to get to that point if you can avoid it. If you do find a frozen pipe, keep faucets open, as running water can help melt the ice. You can treat the pipes by wrapping pads around them, or you can even use space heaters.

Pipes Flood

At worst, bursting pipes can cause significant flooding and render your office unsafe. The floodwater can damage furniture, carpet, walls, or equipment. Also, a frozen pipe could prevent water from reaching the building.

As winter approaches and during large storms, make sure you keep an eye on your interior and exterior pipes. A little effort and mindfulness can help prevent the major disasters a burst pipe can cause.

For more on Towson click here.

Setting Those Stormy Expectations

7/26/2018 (Permalink)

Storm Waters can cause flooding in your Maryland neighborhood

If your home suffered damage as a result of a storm in Towson, MD, complete and accurate restoration is your overall end goal. Storm restoration can only be achieved after you assess water damage, tear out appropriate items and reconstruct as necessary. It is critical to manage your expectations of damages. Understanding the process involved can minimize your storm stresses.

1. Extraction of Water

Begin water extraction by making sure it is safe to be inside your property. Opening doors and windows allows pooled water to drain. Mop saturated areas and blot floors and walls with towels and other dry materials. Move wet furniture and articles into the driest spaces available and turn the air on in your house (blasting the air conditioning in summer or heat during winter).

2. Tear Out of Wet Materials

Removing wet materials from your home in a timely manner is crucial. Mold quickly begins to form on items that are not dried, removed or torn from their location. Extremely damaged carpets or drywall should be removed, though take care not to tear any loadbearing structures from your home without seeking a professional opinion.

3. Drying of Structures

Dry and dehumidify structures as soon as possible. Ceiling fans and box fans can be utilized to dry open areas of the home. Certain areas of your property are harder to access; however, restoration service professionals should have advanced methods, including industrial fans and treatments, to reach these areas and shorten the drying process.

4. Restoration

The last and final step of restoration varies in scope. Occasionally only some drywall and furniture will need to be replaced, while other instances may require expansive rebuilding and landscaping.

Dealing with a storm and its aftermath can be a tricky, cumbersome experience logistically and emotionally. It is important for homeowners in Towson, MD, to know what to expect as they deal with the cleanup process. Remember before, during and after the storm that you have four basic steps to complete in order to restore your home to its previous glory: extract, tear out, dry, restore.

For more on Towson click here

Cleaning Up Your Business After a Flood

6/13/2018 (Permalink)

Commercial Flooding in Towson, Maryland

Floods are dangerous and unpredictable, and they rarely recede without leaving their mark. The problem is that floodwater isn’t usually clean water – it can be filled with sewage, termed “black water” – and is not always easy to clean up. Whether from a storm, a busted pipe or a sewage overflow, facing the aftermath of a flood is never fun for any business.

If you’re worried about flooding in your Towson, MD, business, then it’s important to become familiar with some of the basics of content cleaning after such an event, such as what can be disinfected and restored, and what must be thrown away.

What To Throw Away?

Unfortunately, not everything survives a flood. Some things simply have to go. Here is a list of items that often need to be disposed of during the content cleaning process.

• Porous materials – contaminated wood, drywall, insulation
• Medication and food
• Furniture made with veneer or upholstery
• Carpeting and rugs
• Books

What To Keep?

Not everything in your business will likely be destroyed by contaminated floodwaters. While these tips can help you identify what can be saved, a content cleaning service can certainly help to speed things along. Here is a list of salvageable items that can potentially be sanitized and restored.

• Nonporous items – objects made of metal, glass, porcelain, hard plastic, silver, etc.
• Photographs
• Carpeting (only if floodwater is not contaminated)
• Wood furniture (if not soaked for too long)
• Appliances – heating, air conditioning, air ducts and vents
• Textiles, linens and clothing

What To Do After?

Although some items will need to be discarded and others can be restored, it’s important to remember that the best mitigation measure your business can take is to prevent disasters before they have the chance to happen. Whether you’ve suffered flooding already or are just planning ahead, it may be worth upgrading your business’s infrastructure so that it is more prepared for floods, storms and sewage overflows in the future.

Take measures to prevent a flooding from happening to your commercial building. However, if black water does enter the premises, take note of what can be saved and what must be thrown away when cleaning up afterwards.

For more on Towson click here

Towson Flood Damage - Overcoming Flood Damage in Towson

5/24/2018 (Permalink)

Towson Home Damaged from Flooding

Call SERVPRO for Towson Flood Damage Remediation

The unfortunate reality is that many homeowners will have to contend with flood damage Towson at one time or another. Flooding can occur for any number of reasons, such as a leaky or burst pipe, a natural weather event that brings floodwaters into the home, and more. Whether you have a few inches of water or several feet or water in your home, you need to find a company that offers a fast response to water remediation and flood damage in Towson if you want to return your home to normal.

Why a Fast Response Is Needed
Water may be an essential for life, but it also can be very destructive. Consider that water can cause your wood furnishings and fixtures to warp, mold or mildew. Mold can begin to grow on various other surfaces when water is not removed promptly. In addition, water staining is common. Such issues with staining, warping and mold growth can wreak havoc in your home, but you will find that the damage to your property is significantly reduced when you set up fast efficient Towson flood damage service. Keep in mind that mold and mildew damage can quickly spread to other areas of the home where water damage is not present, posing a health and safety hazard to your loved ones. Preventing the growth of mold in the home is a top priority, and a fast response to water damage is the best option to take.

What to Expect From Flood Damage Services
While flooding is common in homes in this area, you may have never had a reason to contact a professional service provider for Towson flood damage services in the past, and you may not know what to expect from the service. With SERVPRO of Hunt Valley / Lutherville, you can expect a team of skilled and hardworking professionals to arrive at your home promptly and begin extracting the standing water from the home. As soon as the standing water has been removed, additional steps will be taken to reduce the humidity level in the home. Keep in mind that high levels of moisture can be almost as damaging to a home as water itself. The restoration work will begin once the water and humidity have been removed.

When to Call for Help
If you have discovered standing water in your home, you may not be certain when you should contact a professional for assistance with water remediation services. Towson flood damage services are available to help you with all aspects of water remediation, and this includes water extraction, which should begin as soon as possible. This can start as soon as fresh water is no longer pouring into the home. After you have turned off or stopped the flow of water into the home, you can begin eradicating the water through remediation services.

Water damage can be difficult to deal with, but there is a fast and easy solution to your problem available. Call SERVPRO of Hunt Valley / Lutherville for Towson flood damage services. As a locally owned and operated company, we have the resources and personnel to help restore your home. Contact us today at (410) 229-0012.

Safeguarding Your Home Against Potential Flood Damage

4/16/2018 (Permalink)

Severe Flooding Damage can ruin your Hardwoods in your home or business

When there’s a severe storm making its way toward your Towson North, MD, home, the most important task is to get you and your family out of harm’s way. However, if you have a few days to prepare for a potential flooding event, there are ways to organize and safeguard your property from impending flood damage. Help eliminate your chances of getting hit with extreme storm damage by following these few handy rules for flood preparation.

? Elevate your electronics and necessary utility panels. Place any objects like wiring, sockets, appliances, electrical panels or heating systems at a higher elevation in your home if possible, or simply disconnect them before you leave to prevent a potential electrical fire before any flooding occurs.

? Waterproof your basement or cellar. This can help protect your valuables from becoming part of the flood damage, as well as prevent the interior drywall or insulation from soaking up excess water — a situation that could potentially lead to mold growth later on.

? Clear away any debris caught in your home’s gutters, downspouts or storm drains. Any buildup in these areas won’t allow water to flow naturally, which can cause it to get backed up and seep into your home. Clearing the way gives the water a place to escape and increases the likelihood of your home avoiding a major flood issue.

? Move your home’s furniture and valuables to higher ground if the option is available. Keep all important documents such as birth certificates, marriage certificates, social security cards and the like contained in a steel lockbox or safe that won’t be affected by the presence of water.

Though it’s nearly impossible to be prepared for every extreme weather event that occurs in Towson North, MD, it is possible to take preventative measures to secure your home from the worst that flooding can do. Furthermore, seeking professional help from restoration specialists to clean up and secure your property after a disaster can help you return home that much faster.

Click here for more on Towson North.

Identifying Your Flood Water Threat Level

3/12/2018 (Permalink)

Commercial Store Flooding

No flood is a good flood, but did you know that some floods are much more dangerous than others? Flood water is graded on a system, ranging from clear, safe water to “black water,” which tends to carry a wide range of dangerous contaminants. In order to keep your business and employees safe in the aftermath of a flood in Towson North, MD, it’s imperative to learn the defining qualities and natures of:

• Clean/Clear Water
• Gray Water
• Black Water

Learning the differences could very well help to save a life while you wait on your preferred cleanup crew to arrive.

Clean Water

This type of flood typically results from broken water lines, rainwater, toilet tanks and snow melt – sources of water that’s typically considered clean enough to drink. While floods of this water type can be pesky and promote mold growth, they’re not considered a health threat.

Gray Water

Gray water is, simply put, water that comes from sources that may be tainted with chemicals. This can include dishwasher and washing machine overflows, aquariums and other household belongings that deal with water and any sort of cleaner. While it’s mostly harmless, this type of flood water should still be handled by a professional cleanup crew.

Black Water

This is the type of water you’ll find in the aftermath of heavy storm damage, septic tank issues, sewage backup and other issues where unclean water and fluids find a way into your business. This water is likely to carry a wide range of bacteria and diseases, and has a high likelihood of making those who come into contact with it ill. A professional team should always be consulted for cleanup.

Identifying your flood water type is only the first step, of course. You’ll need to work alongside a team of professionals to dry out your property, replace damaged flooring and perform other restoration tasks to get your business back in shape. However, learning the difference between clean water and dangerous water can go a long way towards creating a safe cleanup environment in the meantime.

Visit us at http://www.SERVPROhuntvalleylutherville.com for more information. 

2 Instances When a Flood Cut Is Necessary

1/8/2018 (Permalink)

Extreme flooding can leave you with a basement in a state of disarray. To get the room back to normal, a professional team from Cockeysville, MD can attempt a tear out known as a flood cut. This is when the team removes a portion of your drywall, usually 12 inches above where the water damage ends. While it is not necessary in every single case, most homeowners will find a flood cut to be highly advantageous.

1. When the Water Is Contaminated

When your home has been flooded with normal, clean water, the team may not have to cut out any part of the drywall. However, flood water can carry various hazardous substances, including

• Raw sewage
• Fecal matter
• Chemicals
• Other forms of contamination

Flooding with these substances can result in a variety of problems, and it may mean parts of the walls need to go. It is the only way to ensure the pathogens are removed from the building entirely. This most often occurs when the inside of a house has been flooded from the sewer line. Anything the sewage touches needs to go.

2. When the Walls Have Insulation Behind Them

If your basement walls do not have any insulation behind them, then the professionals may be able to dry the other side of the walls with a technique known as injectidry. This is when small holes are drilled into the wall and the experts use them to carefully dry the interior. However, if there is insulation, then a flood cut is necessary. It is practically impossible to dry insulation, so the walls will need to go to get the insulation out from the area.

When it comes to extreme water damage, professionals sometimes need to resort to drastic measures, but it is to ensure your house is safe to inhabit. If your house in Cockeysville, MD ends up flooding, then you can ask the experts what they would recommend for your specific scenario. Visit http://www.SERVPROofhuntvalley.com for more information on storm damage.

How a Flood Cut Can Protect Your Property

12/18/2017 (Permalink)

How a Flood Cut Can Protect Your Property

Whether it is from a hurricane, a downpour or a broken drain line, each flooding event is unique. Flood restoration experts are trained in a variety of cleanup techniques and know how to operate industrial and technical equipment needed for the job. One of the more advanced techniques they employ is a flood cut. Here are four questions commonly asked about flood cuts.

What Is a Flood Cut? After a room has flooded, an area of drywall is often cut out and disposed of. That cut is usually 12 to 18 inches above the line of water damage, which means that flood damage cleanup technicians will tear out a bottom section of the drywall. This enables a more efficient removal of materials that were tainted by the water.

When Is a Flood Cut Necessary? There are several situations where a flood cut is needed:

In the case of sewage backups
When there is insulation behind the walls
When there is chemical contamination
When harmful pathogens might be present

When Is a Flood Cut Not Needed? In cases where the flooding is from clean water, and where no insulation is present, a flood cut will most likely not be needed. In this situation, the room can be cleaned by normal methods of pumping out the water and then using vacuums and fans to dry the area.

What Happens After a Flood Cut Is Performed? This depends upon the situation, but in most cases, a flood cut allows for a more thorough cleaning and drying out of the affected area. Once that is completed, a contractor can come in and replace the drywall and the insulation.

Flooding in Towson North, Maryland is always a traumatic event, but not every flood should be handled the same way. It’s important to become educated on the various flood damage restoration options before the waters flow. Visit http://www.SERVPROofhuntvalley.com for more information on flood damage.

What to Expect From Storm Damage Restoration

9/26/2017 (Permalink)


What to Expect From Storm Damage Restoration

Hurricane damage, storm damage, wind damage, ice damage and hail damage can wreak havoc in your home. When this happens, you may feel like all is lost. However, you will be surprised by how much can be saved through expert home restoration or storm remediation. Before you count your losses, give storm restoration a chance.

Home restoration services can be sought after calamities such as hail damage, river flooding, ice damage, wind damage, flood water damage, ice damage and hurricane damage. It is best to have the contacts of experts on storm remediation. This is especially in the wake of the recent hurricanes rocking the country.

Another harsh weather element is wind damage after a storm. Wind damage can cause extensive roof damage. This happens due to loose shingles or tiles. Wind damage can also cause moisture from ice dams or ice damming to penetrate the roof. This can lead to wood swelling. The outcome is a sagging ceiling and roof damage which needs extensive roof repair.

The ice dams or ice damming also pose a risk to the roof. A roof leak can develop into a crack. This has the potential to damage the structure. Ice damming also weigh down the roof due to the ice dam pools. Homeowners who live in areas prone to wind or winter damage should consider roofs with a higher slope to reduce roof damage. This will reduce the need for regular roof repairs and the possibility of a roof leak. A roof leak from ice damming or formation of ice dams should be repaired immediately. Putting off a roof repair means that the homeowner incurs more costs later.

Roof inspection before the harsh weather also minimizes the roof repair costs. Any broken or lose shingles should also be fixed. Storm restoration experts will advise you on the appropriate roof repairs to be done ahead of any harsh weather. They will also assess the roof leaks before they get worse.

When you engage the services of storm restoration experts after flood water damage, storm damage, ice damage, hail damage, river flooding, wind damage, flooding or hurricane damage, the experts are sent to your home immediately. The water restoration efforts begin after a careful assessment of the flooding.

The water restoration professionals will also conduct an examination of the exterior and the interior of the home. They also check the extent of the flood water and ground water levels. This helps them to come up with the home restoration plan based on the flooding, storm damage and ground water.

The teams work together after agreeing on where to start. Hurricane damage, storm damage, hail damage, flood water damage, roof damage and ice damage all have different water restoration processes. It is ill advised for home owners to attempt the storm restoration process without seeking professional storm remediation.

Storm remediation. experts also come equipped with the appropriate work gear and tools. An important tool is in the water restoration process is a flood pump. Flood pumps are designed to drain water in flooded areas. These flood pumps can be placed in rooms and left to drain the ground water automatically. The floods can also handle ground water as it rises to higher levels. River flooding pumps are also available for extensive flood water damage. Flood pumps are also used alongside vacuums.

Winter damage is another common weather calamity. Winter damage leads to frozen pipes. The frozen pipes are not able to allow for the flow of water. It can take time for the frozen pipes to unfreeze. It is best to call in the experts to deal with the frozen pipes. Applying heat on the frozen pipes can lead to damage and the pipes may need replacement.

Today, home restoration and storm restoration experts are fully equipped to handle flooding, river flooding and other harsh weather elements. Enlisting their services in good time can help to save your valuables after a storm.
Visit http://www.SERVPROofhuntvalley.com for more information on storm damage.

Restoring Your Property In Cockeysville After A Flood

5/23/2017 (Permalink)

Storms can force an incredible amount of water through a home in a very short amount of time.

Flood Damage Repair

Storms can force an incredible amount of water through a home in a very short amount of time. The flood waters left behind can be clean or contain dirt and other soils which complicate the cleaning and restoration process. Regardless of what is in the water, it is the amount of time that it covers floors and personal property that causes the most damage.

Restoring a Cockeysville home from the effects of flood damage requires training and patience. When it comes to saving moisture soaked hardwood floors, SERVPRO has developed a set of procedures which take into consideration the time under water, moisture levels, and how to prevent cupping, warping or buckling.

All three effects on hardwood floors begin quickly after exposure to excess water. Our task is to keep it from becoming permanent. We eliminate cupping and warping by sanding down the bulging or twisted areas. Technicians disguise this action by making it part of the refinishing process to keep the wood surface with a smooth look. Sanding is very efficient unless the damage is very severe; if it is, then we remove the damaged board and sand a replacement to match the shape and appearance of the original wood. Buckling damage is more evident, but it can be sanded down in some cases. More often, our technicians remove the buckled wood and then sand a replacement to match.

Before we start any work on the floorboards, we test and lower the moisture content. If the moisture levels are very high, it may take four weeks or longer before we can begin work without causing secondary damage to the wood. The level must test out to twelve percent or lower to avoid this.

We start by reducing the relative humidity of the room to under forty-five percent. Technicians set up air movers to force airflow over and under the floorboards. Lowering prevents most of the damage and reduces the chance of mold growth after we get the humidity under twenty percent. Once the levels test under sixteen percent, we use specialized heaters to raise the temperature of the room to speed up evaporation.

Some varnishes and other floor finishes act as a vapor barrier. They slow and even prevent evaporation from happening. If our technicians determine this is the case, they use a pin roller to carefully pierce the finish in corners and out of the way areas. That increases the effectiveness of the air movers and speeds up evaporation.

Repairing and restoring your home after a flood can be a lengthy and expensive process. It is best accomplished by a professional company to avoid subsequent damage and keep costs to a minimum wherever possible. SERVPRO of Hunt Valley / Lutherville helps you through every step. Call us today at (410) 229-0012.

Looking to learn more about Maryland click here http://www.maryland.gov/Pages/default.aspx

Reconstruction Efforts in Towson North

4/11/2017 (Permalink)

Some damaged carpets may need to be replaced after your home experiences a storm damage event. Call us to discuss and start the restoration process.

Your Home Can Be Restored By SERVPRO Technicians After Experiencing Storm Damage


Storms in our state (not to mention all of New England) have broken records over winter and spring so far. Rainfall has been excessive, and the winds have knocked down more trees than many residents have ever seen. Unfortunately, this also means area homes have suffered more damage than in previous years.

Storm reconstruction needs to be done by a professional service, regardless of the extent of the damage to your Towson North home. SERVPRO has decades of experience in reconstruction and restoration of homes and businesses after storms, and other disasters have happened. We are licensed to handle all aspects except major construction (building a complete, new roof for example); from reframing interior walls to that final coat of paint on the trim of your new windows.

After we remove all damaged property and secure the home from the weather and trespassers, technicians start with the interior. If wood flooring is damaged, we replace the affected pieces and stain the new ones to match the existing area. In the case of carpets damaged past restoration, technicians pull up the carpet and pad and replace the tacking strips before laying new carpet.

With the floor back to its original state, technicians install new wall framing. We carefully measure to match the original floor plan and then hang new drywall or other paneling to return your rooms to their pre-damage dimensions and appearance.

Now, our team repairs the ceiling. If the damage is extensive, we recommend pulling down the framing as well as the tiles or panels. Our team members can install a wood or aluminum frame depending on the type of ceiling you choose to place in your home. If there are beams in the attic that need to be replaced or require additional support, our technicians are trained to do that as well.

Finally, we return the face of your home to normal. Our reconstruction crew can replace the windows and doors in most households in a single day. We can also reframe many windows and doorways if you decide to change the type or size of your windows and doors.

Although severe storms are not in the forecast, there is more rain expected this week. Contact us here at SERVPRO of Hunt Valley / Lutherville to begin reconstruction before further damage happens to your home. Call today at (410) 229-0012 to begin.

Flood Damage can Harm Your Home, Your Belongings, and Your Health in Hampton

3/22/2017 (Permalink)

Flooding happens. SERVPRO's quick response can resolve the issue fast and with less chance of secondary damages.

SERVPRO's Quick Response Can Help Prevent Mold Growth


Flooding in your home can happen in several different ways. A broken water line or kids playing a prank with a hose placed through a window and then turned on can fill a home with water faster than might seem possible. Sewer backups from clogs can also happen. Moreover, there is always the traditional flood, caused by too much rain or melting snow.

Regardless of how your Hampton home goes underwater, any of it can cause flood damage. Even clean water from a busted water line or a misplaced hose can cause enormous amounts of water damage. This water can also become contaminated and create health problems in addition to the damage it causes to walls, floors, furniture and doors.

With flood damage, SERVPRO knows that we need to remove as much water as we possibly can and as quickly as our trucks can pump it out. For smaller floods, any secondary water damage can still affect the entire home if it is not sufficiently removed.

Water will damage many items on contact, including walls and floors. Painted walls can bubble or blister, and those with wallpaper can do the same. Both types need to be replaced wherever there is damage. Floors can either be damaged and swell, causing dangerously weak areas or warping, depending on the floor type.

Walls and floors must be repaired or even replaced for your home to be safe again. Quick action can decrease the amount of damage and save thousands of dollars over waiting. These areas of your home cannot easily dry out by themselves as they are saturated on the inside. Waiting leads to increased deterioration.

Furniture can also end up in bad shape because of flood damage. SERVPRO can restore furniture so that it no longer poses a risk of harming someone. If mold has begun to grow, or if metal fasteners have rusted, this can cause once safe furniture to become unstable, and also dangerous. The metal pieces can also become loose because swelling and shrinking of the wooden parts they are attached to will allow them to come loose.

Secondary flood damage includes mold growth in areas of your home. These areas may not have been affected by the flooding to begin with and can be anywhere in your home. Quick and prompt attention to the initial flood damage can stop this from happening.

When flood damage is destroying your home, call us, SERVPRO of Hunt Valley / Lutherville at (410) 229-0012, and we can arrive within an hour after your call.

The Hidden Dangers of Flood Damage

11/27/2016 (Permalink)

Fast Water Removal Mitigates Storm Damage to Your Parkton Home

Cost of Flooding Includes Extraction of the Water and Salvaging Possessions

Dealing with flood damage is troublesome and stressful enough, but such a water emergency also leaves behind some hazards and dangers. Many issues do not become apparent until well after the water has been extracted from a home, but they can be just as disastrous the water that caused the problem in the first place.

Being a homeowner with flood damage in Parkton, it is important that you know what dangers can lurk well after the water is gone. Here's information about the side effects of flooding and how SERVPRO can help get your home back in great shape.
 
Mold
Mold is one of the most notorious secondary water damages associated with flood damage, and it can lead to health effects in humans and animals. It is also unsightly and causes bad odors that are difficult to eliminate. Whether your home had dormant mold spores that became active during a flood or new spores have started to grow, our technicians can spot and help remedy the situation.
 
Damage to Electronics and Appliances
Water and electronics are never a good mix, but the damage typically goes beyond causing appliances and electronic devices to stop working. It can also cause wire corrosion and electrical fires, and even devices that aren't directly exposed to water can start to fail due to the excessive humidity in flood damaged house. We work to get your home's humidity normalized, and we are also able to restore a broad range of electronics and appliances. For some electrical devices, we strongly advise a third party that specializes in restoring sensitive computers, phones, and other equipment. When we salvage your belongings, we can save you money.
 
Structural Damage
Depending on the volume of water that flooded your home, you may have already witnessed the effects that a water emergency can have on your house's structure. However, any amount of water that's allowed to sit will cause serious damage eventually ranging from cracks in the floors and fissures in your walls. SERVPRO technicians are IICRC trained to look for these types of problems while restoring homes with flood damage, which can prevent unwelcome surprises in the future.
 
The team at SERVPRO of Hunt Valley / Lutherville can quickly restore your home after any flooding emergency and help guard against the potential hazards that come along with it. To receive a quote or get more information about our flood damage services, call us 24/7 at (410) 229-0012.

Forest Hill Flood damage - Flood damage in Forest Hill and Protecting Your Home

5/2/2016 (Permalink)

One of the greatest ways to protect your Forrest Hill home from flood damage is to devise a plan for prevention.

Protecting Your Home from Flood damage

One of the greatest ways to protect a home from flood damage is to devise a plan for prevention. Even though homeowners cannot predict when a flood will occur or how extensive it will be, they can still take certain measures to minimize the Forrest Hill flood damage. In order to develop the best plan, here're a few recommendations listed below.
 
Recommendation #1 - Do Your Homework on Forrest Hill Flood Damage and How it Applies to the Area
Because some people live on the flood plains, it is important that they carefully consider what needs to be done in these situations. One of the first tasks is to make certain that the family knows how to follow safety guidelines in advance. By knowing what to do before problems occur, it can assist with minimizing issues with fear and everyone can react proactively to get to the safest places as quickly as possible.
 
Recommendation #2 - Public Works Department Provide Flood Maps
Knowing how to prepare for the worst or best possibilities is also a key factor in protecting the family members, the home and the assets within. To assist homeowners with this portion of the preparation, there is information available that is needed and available. In particular, the Public Works Department can provide the property owner with a flood map of their area so that they can review it for the potential impact. For instance, the flood maps will show the homeowner what type of damage that may occur. In some cases, the homeowner may reside in the area that is at the highest level of risk. Which means, in these situations, the owner must be prepared to protect their appliances, water heaters, and other items from damage. In some situations, the owner, and the family may need to move all of these items to a higher floor so that the flood waters cannot cause any unnecessary damage.
 
Recommendation #3 - Electrical Switches and Fuses most positioned above the flood line.
In addition to finding out the severity of the damage that can occur to the home from the Public Works Department, homeowners can also ensure the home’s electrical fuses and switches are seated above their flood line, whenever it is possible. If these items are taking care of in advance, it can also prevent the home’s electrical systems shorting out and causing substantial financial damages.
 
So, for those of you who are interested in finding out more information about preventive measures and how these professionals can help you with your flood damage needs, you can contact SERVPRO of Hunt Valley / Lutherville at (410) 229-0012.