Recent Water Damage Posts
Who Should I Call First When There is Standing Water In My Home?
Standing water in a Forest City, NC home
We’re here to help. If you have standing water in your home and need emergency service, give us a call. At SERVPRO of Lake Lure Forest City, we provide emergency restoration services, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. We understand that when flooding happens it can be overwhelming. That’s why we want to make sure you know who to call first when there is standing water in your home!
When you have standing water in your home, the first people you should call are contractors. They can help assess the damage and provide recommendations on how to proceed. If a contractor is not available immediately, they may be able to refer you to someone who is. Contractors are often the best people to find a restoration company and property management company that can help with cleanup or repairs. You should also contact an insurance agent so that all of your bases are covered after such an experience.
2. Insurance Agent
If your home has standing water, you'll need to call an insurance agent. Your insurance agent will have the expertise to help you file a claim and get in touch with a restoration company. They can also assist with getting in contact with the right people at your insurance company so that they can help you get a rental property if needed or offer other assistance as well.
If you have severe water damage in your home, it is important that you take immediate action. Don't let the water sit for too long or try to clean it up yourself.
3. Property Management Company
Third, if you're renting a home and your property management company is responsible for maintaining it, they likely won't be able to help with the restoration process. However, they may be able to recommend contractors or even help you find temporary housing until the damage has been repaired.
In general, if you're not sure who to contact when there's standing water in your Forest City, NC home, it's best to call your insurance agent first. They'll be able to get things moving quickly so that the right people can come out and start the restoration process as soon as possible.
4. Professional Restoration Company
This is the most important step to take when dealing with water damage. A professional restoration company has the experience, equipment and expertise to properly restore your home back to its original state. They can also help you find out what caused the water damage in your home so you know how to prevent similar incidents from happening again in the future.
Water damage can be a serious problem, especially if left untreated. If you suspect that your home has suffered from water damage, contact a professional restoration company immediately.
When you have a water damage emergency, it is important to take action quickly. The longer the water sits in your home or business, the more damage it will cause and the more expensive it will be to repair. So if you need help with a flooded basement or other water damage problem, we’re here for you 24 hours a day. Call us at (828) 245-8436 and speak directly with one of our trained technicians who can give you advice on how to solve this problem as soon as possible!
How to Fix a Flooded Basement?
A flooded basement in Forest City, NC.
How to Repair a Flooded Basement
A flooded basement is a nightmare. The water can ruin your home and your possessions, and the cleanup process can be frustrating and difficult. But there's no need to panic! There are steps you can take to limit the damage caused by flooding, clean up your basement quickly, and make sure it doesn't happen again.
It’s important to remove as much of the water as quickly as possible. You can use a wet/dry vacuum, a pump, or even a shop vac. This is especially true if you have carpeting in your basement because wet carpets will lead to mold growth and other problems if they aren't removed immediately.
Next, it's time to clean up the mess. You'll need to remove wet and damaged items from your basement, and then remove any standing water. For instance:
- Remove any wet insulation that has fallen down from the walls or ceiling. If you can't get it out of there on your own, call a professional for help.
- Remove all wet carpeting in your basement so it doesn't cause mold growth later on (or smell awful). If you don't have the money right away for new carpeting, consider renting out a machine that will suck up excess moisture and dirt in your carpets so they can dry faster.
- Remove all drywall damaged by flooding as soon as possible; chances are good that if it was hit with enough water over an extended period of time, mold spores will have been embedded into the paper backing—and if those spores haven't already appeared yet, they likely will soon!
Now that you've removed your wet belongings from the basement, it's time to start the drying process. One of the most effective ways to get rid of moisture is through dehumidifiers and fans.
Dehumidifiers are great for removing moisture because they use a refrigeration system to absorb water into their internal compartment, which acts as a cooling agent when heated by an internal heater. This method works well because dehumidifiers pull air in through their vents and expel it out through another vent at a higher temperature than that which originally entered the machine—which means it also removes any excess humidity (water vapor) along with it!
Fans can help speed up this process as well by circulating air throughout your basement space. It isn't uncommon for basements to become moldy in areas where there's been standing water or excessive dampness over time; using fans can help prevent this from happening while also speeding up drying time overall so you don't have to wait around forever before moving back into your home again! You may also want to consider installing exhaust fans near windows going out toward open spaces such as yards or streets so any remaining moisture gets released outside rather than building up inside your house next door instead."
The cleanup needs to be handled quickly and professionally
You need a professional to perform the cleanup of your flooded basement. One with experience, who knows what needs doing and can do it quickly. You need someone with the right equipment for the job, and most importantly, someone you can trust. The longer the water sits, the more damage it can cause to your Forest City, NC, home. If you need help with your flooded basement cleanup, contact our SERVPRO of Lake Lure Forest City team today!
4 Steps to Preventing Water Damage in Your Home While on Vacation
Shutting off the water supply line.
Prevent Water Damage In Your Home
One of the worst ways to end your vacation is returning to your home in Union Mills, NC, and finding that it’s flooded due to a broken pipe. There are some precautions you can take to prevent unexpected water damage. If you are planning on being away from home for more than a couple of days, it’s recommended you keep a checklist to follow, so you can avoid costly water pipe repair.
1. Clear Away Exterior Debris
It’s good practice to routinely check points around your home where leaves and other debris collect, such as gutters. Inspecting your home’s exterior before leaving will provide you with an added sense of security.
2. Keep Pipes and Spigots Insulated
If you live in a northern climate and plan to vacation during the winter months, one practical way to protect pipes is to cover them with an insulation sleeve. Covers are also available for spigots. Disconnect any hoses that aren’t in use, such as garden hoses.
3. Inspect Your Home for Leaks
Simply taking the time to inspect your home for leaks, or the potential thereof could prevent water pipe repair down the road. The most obvious places to check are all sinks, toilets, and tubs. Look them over thoroughly for any signs of seepage, dripping, dampness, or rust. Don’t forget some of the less obvious places, such as the water heater.
Water can also leak in through broken window seals and the roof. While you’re surveying your home in Union Mills, NC, you might as well check for missing or broken shingles and weak areas. Your goal is to keep from returning to a flooded mess.
4. Shut the Water Off
Even if you’re planning on asking someone you trust to stop by and check on your home periodically, it’s recommended to turn off the main water line. Remember to let all of the water drain from the faucets and toilet tanks will alleviate pressure buildup and help prevent the possibility of a broken pipe.
Taking a few simple precautions before you leave on vacation allows you to better relax and enjoy your time away. It also goes a long way toward preventing water pipe repair.
What To Do About Water in Your Crawl Space
A wet crawl space can have a big impact on your home.
How Did Water Get Under The House?
Most homeowners in Forest City, NC, take water problems very seriously. Water can cause a lot of damage to furniture, appliances and fabrics. But many people overlook a wet crawl space. It's easy to assume that since it's not part of the interior, a little water is okay. That may not be the case.
Causes of Moisture
So how did water get under the house in the first place? There are a few common reasons:
- A leaky pipe
- The slope of your yard
- A misdirected downspout
- A flood
Figuring out which of these is the source of the water will help you find a solution.
Potential for Damage in a Wet Crawl Space
A seemingly empty crawl space is a critical area in the home. The foundation and important structural elements are accessed here. When there is flooding, damage can happen. Water weakens wood joists and supports, erodes foundations and fosters mold growth. All these issues can become long-term problems that will need to be repaired. And the repairs can get costly. The best way to minimize damage is to address the situation as soon as possible.
Ways To Fix the Problem
Once you’ve decided to act, there are a few key steps. Stop the source of the water so that you can deal with the problem. Get a professional to clean the area and get rid of any mold that may have developed. Check the structural elements of your home. If something seems compromised, call someone to repair or replace it. You may want to invest in waterproofing or a pump that can help keep everything dry to help reduce future problems. It's also a good idea to add crawl space inspections to your home maintenance list
While it’s an easy thing to ignore, a wet crawl space can have a big impact on your home. Knowing that, take the time to make a plan to handle any problems you find when making inspections. You’ll sleep easier knowing you’re taking the best care of your home.
What To Do if Your Light Floods
Water damage in a light fixture in a home in Union Mills, NC.
Water Damage To a Light Fixture
A broken pipe or overflowing bathtub can cause leaks in the oddest places. If there is a light fixture on the ceiling directly below the leak, you could find water in the light. Water and electricity don't mix well, so it's important to take a few preliminary steps before water restoration experts arrive to repair the water damage to your ceiling.
1. Cut Electricity
The first thing to do is to stop the electrical current that is flowing to the light. Water is an excellent conductor of electricity, so a light fixture with water poses a risk of shock to anyone who comes into contact with it. If you want to make sure that the electricity is off, you can test nearby dry surfaces with a voltage tester that doesn't make actual contact with the surface.
2. Stop Water Flow
After you have eliminated the electrical risk, it's a good idea to shut off the source of the leak. If a toilet overflow is the culprit, turn the water off at the wall to stop water from running into the tank. If you have a broken pipe, you will likely need to turn the water off at the water main to keep from getting more water in the light below.
3. Call Professionals
Ceiling damage from a water leak is not the sort of thing you want to handle on your own. Certified technicians in Union Mills, NC, have the knowledge and tools to fix the problem safely and efficiently. By leaving it up to them, you can likely avoid secondary damage such as mold or further leaking and be confident that the damage is remediated completely.
A leak on the second floor may result in water in the light below it. Your best course of action in this situation is to stop the flow of electricity and water to the area and let the professionals take it from there.
How To Clean Flood-Damaged Electronics
Not all flooded electronics can be fully restored to working condition.
What To Do About Flooded Electronics
If your Nebo, NC, building floods, the cleaning and restoration process that follows can be complicated. One of the most daunting aspects of water damage cleanup is what to do about flooded electronics. Follow these steps for safely cleaning and restoring a water-damaged device.
1. Stay Safe
When retrieving your electronics, be careful to avoid any shock hazards. The safest bet is to disconnect the building power if possible. Avoid standing in water or wearing wet clothing when handling electronics and use extra care with battery-operated devices.
2. Disassemble and Drain
Make sure the device is turned off and remove the battery. Turn and gently shake the device to drain as much water as possible. Carefully disassemble the device as completely as you can. To completely remove water from around and under circuit board components, fully submerge the circuit board in a container of isopropyl alcohol. For best results, use alcohol with a concentration of 90% or higher.
3. Carefully Clean
For most flooded electronics, simply drying them out is not enough. Most floodwater contains at least some contaminants, so it’s important to clean devices. Removing any residue or debris is particularly important with sensitive components such as circuit boards. Use a soft toothbrush or small paintbrush to gently clean these components, being especially careful around cables and connectors to avoid damaging the contact surfaces. Dry the cleaned components using a clean hairdryer in a cold setting, or by placing them under a slightly warm desk lamp.
4. Reassemble and Test
Reassemble your device only after it is completely dry. Always use a new battery, never one that has been submerged. Carefully turn the device on and test to see if it is working correctly. When troubleshooting electronic damage, it’s helpful to replace one part at a time until you find the defective component.
Unfortunately, not all flooded electronics can be fully restored to working condition. This cleaning process will help you salvage as much as possible.
What Do You Need To File a Water Damage Claim?
Water damage in Columbus, NC.
File a Water Damage Claim
Documentation is required to file a homeowners insurance claim for water damage. A policyholder should provide photos, videos, maintenance records, and proof of purchase to an insurer as evidence of damage caused by a pipe burst or any type of leak. Learn more about what information a homeowner should gather as he or she prepares to file a claim for water damage.
Proof of Damage
Insurers will want to see proof of the full extent of the damage. There are several types of useful documentation:
- Footage dated prior to an incident
These records indicate that damage was caused by the incident that led a homeowner to file an insurance claim. It is important to document damage before taking any steps toward mitigation. Homeowners may also benefit from being able to produce maintenance records indicating that the incident was not due to negligence. Even if an insurer does not cover the cause of damage, coverage should be available for the effects.
Proof of Purchase
It can also be helpful to gather receipts or other proof of purchase for damaged contents. Check your policy to ensure that the replacement cost of items is covered rather than the actual cash value. Given depreciation, the latter may not be sufficient to replace items with severe damage.
A Restoration Estimate
Insurers prefer to work with an established water damage mitigation and restoration company. Obtain an estimate for the cleanup and restoration processes by contacting a company that provides both services. This calculation may be more accurate and complete than estimates from more than one business.
All of this information can help a homeowner filing an insurance claim for water damage. Be aware that homeowners insurance does not cover any damage caused by flooding. A separate flood insurance policy is necessary for damage resulting from heavy rains or rising bodies of water in Columbus, NC.
Flush a Water Heater in 4 Steps
Regular maintenance can keep a water heater working for years.
How to Flush a Water Heater in 4 Easy Steps
Regular maintenance can keep a water heater working for years. Follow these four steps to flush the tank and eliminate deposits such as minerals and sediment.
1. Turn Off the Appliance
If you have a gas heater, shut off the gas and extinguish the pilot. Switch off the line that supplies an electric heater at the circuit breaker.
2. Prepare the Hose and Tank
Connect a garden hose to the drain valve and run the opposite end to an area that will not be affected by water and sediment. Open the drain valve on the water heater and let the water flow for several minutes. Turn on the hot water faucet in the kitchen to drain the remaining water from the tank. After several minutes, turn off the water supply valve. You may turn the valve on and off again for an extra flush.
3. Close Valves and Turn On Water
Once the water and sediment has drained, close the heater valves and turn the water supply back on. Check the flow of water at the kitchen sink and make sure the stream starts flowing consistently.
4. Turn on the Heater
Turn on the heating element or restore power only after the tank is full. Turn off the faucet in the kitchen.
The frequency with which you should perform a water heater flush depends on the quantity of hot water used. If you live alone or with one other person, flush the tank once a year. In a household with three to five residents, flush the tank every eight months. For more than six occupants, flush the tank twice a year.
If you experience a leak or water damage resulting from a malfunctioning water heater, contact a plumber or repair service in Mill Spring, NC. You may also want to file an insurance claim and hire residential water damage restoration experts.
How to Dry Important Company Documents Without Sacrificing Integrity
It may not seem possible to salvage wet documents after a business has flooded, but the methods below may offer the best chance of recovering those vital papers.
1. Clean Before Drying
Mud and other debris usually accompany flooding; therefore, before attempting to dry and salvage your business’s essential documents, you may need to get the dirt off of them. One of the best ways to remove all that muck is to place the wet papers under a screen and, after the mud has dried some, vacuum the debris from the surface.
2. Air, Fans, and Paper Towel
Air is likely the most obvious way to dry out wet documents; however, it may not be the most efficient. If you want to attempt any document drying with this method, then you will need plenty of dry space to layout your papers. Lay all the papers separately, using a paper towel to damp off excess water. Once excess water is removed, you can turn a fan on low to help circulate the air and speed up the drying process.
If some of your business documents haven’t dried after two days, then you can wrap each sheet in wax paper and freeze them, ensuring the prevention of mold. Most of the time it is necessary to leave the documents in the freezer for up to two weeks, but after that time you remove them and attempt air drying again.
4. Professional Help
While most people are familiar with the idea of using restoration specialists after a flood, many don’t consider that there are services like that for document drying. You can check the local Saluda, NC, area for professionals who specialize in the vacuum freeze-drying of documents. This process freezes your documents in a vacuum-sealed container and then, using heat and air forced through the container, dries the papers.
After a flood forces a business to close, wet documents can be one of the most devastating things for a company, but it doesn’t have to be if you are aware of the ways to save and dry those critical papers.
Help! There's Water Dripping From My Ceiling!
Water damage in a light fixture.
What Should You Do If You Find Water In The Light?
Sometimes water damage happens before you've had any evidence of a leak. You may be able to resolve some of those leaks by making necessary repairs, but there are some situations that require the services of a specialist. One of these is water in a light fixture. The risks of DIY repairs in this case include:
- Electrocution injuries or death
- Electrical fires due to corrosion or mold
- Injuries due to a soggy or collapsed ceiling
Think About Safety Concerns
Your first concern should be your safety and the safety of your family. Next, turn off the water and electricity before beginning any other repair efforts. Many water shutoff valves are located in the basement, if there is flooding in your path, it's best to turn off the electricity before getting near any water or electrical outlets, light switches, and other potential sources of electrical contact.
Talk to Your Insurance Company
After shutting off electricity and the water, contact your insurance company. Your chances of filing a successful claim to cover damages are better if you've taken the course of action recommended by the insurance company. You may be advised to take further safety precautions, such as contact the power company to shut off all electricity until a professional has given the okay to turn it back on.
Hire a Remediation Professional
Finally, contact a specialist with experience in cleaning up after water damage, including ceiling damage and electrical concerns. The specialist may take steps such as cutting around the ceiling fixture to release any pooling water in the light. This professional or an electrician can tell you whether fixtures and electrical wiring should be replaced. Don't turn the water or the electricity back on until you have approval from these experts.
Water damages can be scary, but with quick thinking and professional advice, you can bring the situation under control. Remember to focus on safety, cover your bases with the insurance company, and hire knowledgeable professionals in Mill Spring, NC.
Prepare Your Business for Spring Floods in Three Steps
Remove debris from your rain gutters.
Prevent Water Damage In Your Business
Spring is lovely with birds and flowers. The change in weather can be a relief after a long winter. However, spring also brings rain showers and melting snow which can lead to flooding. The following are three steps to prevent water damage at your Lake Lure business.
1. Take Inventory
If your business is damaged due to spring floods, a frozen pipe or any other type of water damage, it is important to have an inventory of all business property on hand for the insurance company. Include the date and price of purchase as well as photo or video of the items in their preloss condition. Having the inventory readily available will expedite the insurance claim process, so keep it in a secure location.
2. Prepare the Building
Although a certified restoration service can clean and repair your building after flooding, it is better to avoid water damage in the first place. Make sure the gutters on your building are cleaned out and securely attached before the spring flood. Examine the foundation and repair any cracks. Before snow begins accumulating, inspect the roof and make any necessary repairs.
3. Inspect the Sump Pump
If your building has a sump pump, make sure to test it prior to spring rains. Testing the pump is a simple task. Pour water into the basin and make sure the device pumps out the water. If the pump does not activate, check that the float switch is not jammed and the power cord is in good condition.
Flooding can cause severe damage and interfere with your business’s operations. Fortunately, there are steps business owners can take to minimize damage. Make sure sump pumps, gutters and other protective devices are in good working order. Make sure you have an inventory of all the things you would need insurance to repair or replace should they be damaged during a spring flood.
Cleaning Items After Water Damage
Items of a home damaged by water.
Cleaning Items After Water Damage
When you have water in your home after a leak or a flood, you are faced with several complicated issues. Many people in your position wonder what items can be saved after water damage. There is no hard and fast rule, but the following factors are important:
- The level of cleanliness of the water
- The amount of time the water has soaked the items
- The porosity of the items
- The level of cleanliness of the materials
If the water leak comes from a category 1 source, which is clean water suitable for drinking, then more items can be dried and restored. On the other hand, dirty water, from either a category 2 or category 3 source, often does enough damage that replacement is necessary.
The Time Factor
The presence of water in home also plays a role. In as little as 24-48 hours, clean water leaked into your property in Lake Lure, NC turns into gray or category 2 water. That's because it picks up impurities as time passes. Also, unpleasant things begin to happen such as the growth of mold and mildew. Items like carpeting, upholstery, clothing and drywall become harder to save the more time passes after a broken pipe or some other leak. More durable items that don't allow water to penetrate such as tile, porcelain, plastic and metal can sometimes still be cleaned and dried effectively after a couple of days. Eventually, though, given enough time, water will begin to break down even the toughest materials.
The Restoration Role
A professional water damage specialist will use expert techniques that increase the number of items that can be restored. A certified technician uses powerful vacuums and air dryers to suck out water and moisture. Methods such as dry cleaning and premier cleaning are very effective for clothing and upholstery. While water in a home is always a challenging situation, professional cleaning and restoration can save money and valuable items.
3 Things To Do Before a Home Adjuster Visit
Water damage in Marion, NC
Here Are A Few Things You Can Do To Prepare Yourself
If you have experienced water damage to your Marion, NC, home, one of the first things that you should do is start your insurance claim. During this process, an adjuster will visit to go over the damage and determine how much your compensation should be. Before the adjuster’s visit, there are a few things that you can do to prepare.
1. Contact a Restoration Service
Water damage can cause many problems in your home, from mold growth to ruined building materials. For this reason, you should have mitigation done as quickly as possible to prevent damage from getting worse. A cleanup and restoration service can remove the water from your home and begin cleaning the building even before the home adjuster visits. The money you receive from your insurance claim can help pay for this.
2. Make a List of Damaged Areas and Items
The amount you receive for your claim will depend on how much damage your home has suffered. It is a good idea to list and take pictures of damaged sections of your house before any work is done. Your home adjuster will also need documentation of belongings that need to be repaired or replaced. If you have receipts, you should include these as well.
3. Go Over Your Policy
Not every insurance policy is the same, so it’s a good idea to go over yours so that you are familiar with the details, particularly if you have not previously filed a claim. Make sure you know what is required of you and what you can expect as you move forward. Doing so will help move the process along smoothly, making things easier for both you and your home adjuster.
Although dealing with water damage and the resulting insurance claim can be stressful, there are steps you can take to help things go more easily. Preparing before the visit from your adjuster can make a big difference.
6 Helpful Hints About Filing a Water Damage Insurance Claim
We're prepared to handle any water damage restoration job.
Insurance claims for water damage are on the rise. In fact, water damage claims are purportedly the second most reported petitions in Marion, NC. However, questions often arise when homeowners try to decipher the legal jargon of insurance policy, and many frequently become frustrated over exemptions and exclusions. Here are six hints to help you decode the steps you to take when making a water damage insurance claim.
1. Take pictures of the damaged area immediately after finding the water. Also, continue taking pictures during all stages of cleanup and restoration. If the damage is due to a pipe burst, take pictures of the pipe as well. Offer a copy of all photos to the insurance adjuster.
2. Contact your insurance agent regarding the loss. Ask the agent questions about your coverage, the time limit to file a claim, and deductibles. Request information on repairs, restoration, and how long a claim takes to process.
3. Establish your claim by filling out the claim forms as soon as you receive the papers. Return the completed documents to the insurance company right after you finish the paperwork.
4. Keep a list of damaged and lost items. Include all steps taken to clean or discard major items, if possible. Also, take pictures and keep the photos with the records to substantiate the loss. If receipts are available for destroyed or damaged items, provide copies with your insurance claim.
5. Request receipts and a detailed list of all work done by your water repair and restoration company. Also, ask the team to include a list of all supplies used to clean and sanitize the area.
6. If your family needs to relocate during cleanup and restoration, keep receipts. Extensive records required may include living expenses, replacement clothing, and meal expenditures.
Once your insurance claim has been settled, and the insurance company accepts your submission, a payment is typically sent to cover the terms of the settlement. If the claim is refused, you have the right to contest the refusal and the right to hire an attorney.