Prep Your Building for Winter Weather
Cold weather can be a stressful time for many property management companies. It’s hard to predict how the ice and snow will affect your properties and if not kept up with can cause a lot of damage to them.
In the unfortunate event that something does happen to one of your properties, it’s important to be able to respond and have the problem addressed as quickly as possible. Your clients or tenants will expect you to have a response plan in action as soon as you are notified of the problems.
SERVPRO of Chesterfield and SERVPRO of Tri-Cities, Plus is ready for any challenge you can throw our way. We respond faster to every disaster. Our highly trained team of technicians can handle jobs of any size, whether it’s a residential rental or a large office building they are ready to do their best to help ensure that your clients are satisfied with how you handled the problem
SERVPRO Cleans Biohazard Materials
Here at SERVPRO of Chesterfield and SERVPRO of Tri-Cities, Plus we’re primarily known as a restoration company, handling fire, water, and mold disasters for your family and businesses. While this is true, we are also equipped to handle many other scenarios that require cleanup and repairs to your property. This includes anything related to biohazards and crime scenes:
Pathogens including COVID-19
SERVPRO offers a vial pathogen cleaning service through our Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned program. With commercial cleaning equipment like foggers and proprietary cleaners, we’re able to give your property a specialized deep cleaning that goes beyond the scope of typical janitorial services.
Our team is trained to remove potentially hazardous substances resulting from accidents, crime scenes or death that includes bodily fluids.
Many of the chemicals used in the production of illegal drugs are highly volatile and are capable of leaving harmful residues throughout a structure. Our technicians follow federal and state guidelines to properly clean all surfaces.
Tear Gas and Pepper Spray
The chemicals found in tear gas and pepper spray are toxic and corrosive. Our technicians are able to remove these toxins and irritants from the surfaces of your property and return the rooms to a safe and habitable space
Fire Extinguisher Residue
Using chemical or powder fire extinguishers leaves behind difficult to clean residues on the surfaces of your property. SERVPRO professionals can remove these residues from your home and help you decide which items are salvageable or should be discarded.
The powders left behind in evidence collection can be difficult to clean and easy to smear and make worse. Using our dry soil removal techniques and extraction devices we’re able to remove them while preventing their transfer to other surfaces.
Biohazard situations can often be traumatic, and our team is equipped to handle them with the respect and professionalism needed. In addition, we are also able to work directly with your insurance company to help streamline the processes and make things go as smoothly as possible. When you need to know that your property is clean and safe, SERVPRO of Chesterfield and SERVPRO of Tri-Cities, Plus is here to help.
Common Toilet Leaks
Finding out there’s a water leak in your home is never fun, but one of the last places you want to be leaking is your toilet. As with everything else in your home, toilets can degrade over time with regular use. It’s important to know the most common causes of why your toilet could be leaking and how to fix them.
- Bad Supply Line or Valve – If the issue is with your supply line you may see dripping when you flush. The problem is that small leaks are often very difficult to find and identify. The easiest way to find them is with a colored water test. Using color-test safe tablets or food coloring to avoid staining the toilet, dye the water in the tank and wait. After about 10-15 minutes check and see if you can find any colored water outside the toilet. If not, give it a flush and then check again. If you still don’t see any colored water, then your problem may be elsewhere.
- Broken Tank Flange – The tank flange is what mounts the toilet to the floor and connects it to the drain line. If this is broken, there are a few things you may notice. First is obviously, moisture buildup or puddles around the base of the toilet. Additionally, you may notice unpleasant odors, or your toilet might be wobbly. Both of these are signs that the flange my need to be replaced.
- Wax Seal – When you flush the toilet, the water will exit into the sewage line. If the wax seal below the toilet is damaged, the water may instead go around the base of the toilet. To repair this, you should first try and tighten the bolts on the toilet, if you’re still having issues, you may need to replace the wax gasket.
- Poor Installations – There is also the possibility that the toilet was originally installed incorrectly. If this is the case, there’s a chance that the water damage could have been happening for quite some time before you noticed. If this is the case, you should replace the toilet and contact a water damage company as soon as possible.
Remember that water will continue to damage your home until the source of the leak has been addressed and everything has been dried out. Putting off addressing the water damage in your home can lead to even more costly repairs. If you’ve discovered water damage in your home due to a leaking toilet or any other cause our team here at SERVPRO of Chesterfield and SERVPRO of Tri-Cities, Plus is available 24/7, 365 days a year to help make it “Like it never even happened.”
Types of Smoke and Soot Damage
Structural damage and charred walls are unfortunately not the only problems that come following a fire in your home. Smoke and soot travel through the air and can leave an awful smell and damaging residue behind. Since smoke travels through the air, it can easily travel throughout the entire home even to places where the fire may not have affected including behind walls, inside your HVAC system, and other cavities in your home.
While the smell that smoke causes is definitely a huge issue, the biggest problem that soot causes is because of its acidic nature. If left unaddressed the particles of soot can start to break down structural components of your home and damage your belongings, drastically increasing the costs of your home’s restoration.
Facts about smoke and soot:
- Hot smoke rises into cooler areas of the home, getting into the upper levels even if they aren’t affected by the fire itself.
- Smoke and soot particles are actually made up of bits of carbon and unburned materials that were consumed by the fire.
- There are different kinds of soot particles depending on the fuel of the fire, and these differences can drastically change the restoration process.
Kinds of smoke:
- Wet Smoke – This kind of smoke is from low heat, smoldering fires. Typically fueled by plastics, rubber, or oils. The soot particles left behind by this kind of smoke are typically sticky, and difficult to clean, with a very pungent odor.
- Dry Smoke – This smoke is usually fueled by fast burning materials like wood and paper that burns at high temperatures. This smoke tends to spread more because of the high temperatures but is usually a bit easier to clean up because it is less sticky and prone to smearing.
Regardless of the kind of smoke that has affected your home, clean up after a fire is no easy task. SERVPRO of Chesterfield and SERVPRO of Tri-Cities, Plus can help you to decide the best course of action, take care of cleaning your items, and even rebuild your home after cleaning up the damage. We specialize in turnkey service, meaning that we can be your “one stop shop” to getting your life back on track after a fire without having to deal with multiple contractors and companies. We’ll even work directly with your insurance company to help make the process as easy as possible for you. Remember that when it comes to fire, smoke, and soot damage, the longer you wait to clean it up the more damage that can be caused. That’s why our teams are available 24/7, 365 days a year to help you get your home back to “Like it never even happened.”
The Importance of Using a Restoration Company
When it comes to property damage from a storm, it’s important to stress that it’s likely not something that you should address on your own. There are many factors that go into restoring a building after it’s been damaged by a storm that are often not considered or something that your average person is unable to do themselves. Here are some of the reasons why you should consider a professional restoration company like SERVPRO of Chesterfield and SERVPRO of Tri-Cities, Plus if your building has suffered damage.
- Stopping Continued and Secondary Damage – Unfortunately when it comes to water damage, it’s not over once the rain stops falling. Water will travel anywhere it can and will continue to cause increased damage to your home or business until it is dried. Often water will get behind walls and under cabinets where someone without professional equipment would be able to spot it. Additionally, our team’s equipment will be able to help dry out your home or business faster than you could on your own, helping to reduce repair costs.
- Growth– If water is not properly or quickly cleaned up, it creates a breeding ground for growth to form. Our team uses specialty cleaners and is trained to help ensure that growth won't appear the first time, and won't have the opportunity to spore.
- Equipment – When dealing with flood waters, typical household equipment just doesn’t make the cut. Here at SERVPRO, our teams are constantly training in the latest techniques and in the best equipment to get the job done fast and get it done right. With industrial air movers and dehumidifiers, we’re able to better control the conditions in your home to make the drying process go as smoothly as possible.
Hopefully, this helps you to better understand the need for a professional restoration company in the event of a flood in your home or business. Our teams are available 24/7, 365 days a year for all of your emergency service needs. Please give us a call and let us know how we can make your home or business “Like it never even happened.”
Looking for Hidden Damages After a Flood
After a heavy storm, many of the signs that your home has sustained flooding or other water damage are typically pretty obvious, however, there are some places that could have hidden pockets of water that may not be quite as obvious.
Crawl spaces are the area of your home that typically separates the first floor of a home from the ground. It also is typically where you would find the essential structural materials like plumbing and electrical wiring. Because this area is on the ground it is more susceptible to water damage during storms. If not properly dried, this can lead to structural deterioration, mold issues, and damage to your plumbing, wiring, and insulation as well. A professional restoration company like us here at SERVPRO of Chesterfield and SERVPRO of Tri-Cities, Plus will be able to enter your crawlspace and identify any areas of hidden moisture that you might otherwise not be able to see.
Attics are another area often forgotten about after storms. Heavy storms have the potential to damage your roof and allow moisture to enter your attic. Because attics are often not climate controlled like the rest of your house is, they are typically areas of large temperature swings, and higher humidity, so when additional moisture is present and not addressed it can be incredibly problematic. Be sure to check out your attic regularly and inspect for any signs of water damage and moisture buildup, especially after any heavy storms. If you’re ever unsure of an area our team is trained to identify problem areas and have special equipment that helps us spot moisture in hidden spots.
Once any issues have been identified the first step is to remove the damaged materials and begin to dry it out. Our team will place air movers and dehumidifiers to help reduce moisture in the air as well as pull it out of your structural materials. Once it is dry, we can address any issues with damaged components that may need either repaired or in some cases replaced.
Remember that water damage will continue to get worse the longer that it sits on your property so it is imperative to act quickly and address any issues you may have. Please don’t hesitate to call us and let us know how we can help get your home back to “Like it never even happened.”
SERVPRO Can Fix Commercial Building Damage
Flooding and other water damage events in a commercial building often present unique and complex challenges. From figuring out how to remain operational, product loss, and information security, solving these problems requires a flexible company that understands that every water damage event is different. Here at SERVPRO of Chesterfield and SERVPRO of Tri-Cities, Plus, our team is constantly training to help ensure that we're able to address every water damage as efficiently and effectively as possible.
As IICRC certified water damage restoration professionals, if possible, we have the knowledge necessary to properly contain an area so that you can continue your business's operations safely. If needed, we're able to perform our work after-hours as well. Additionally, we offer contents restoration and are often able to help reduce your losses by drying and cleaning the items damaged in the water, including your important paper documents. Replacing items and building materials can be costly, which is why we always focus on repairing rather than replacing them wherever possible.
In some cases, water damage can span thousands or even hundreds of thousands of feet of building space. We have a large loss division to address these events that are trained in the logistics of restoring large buildings like dorms, hotels, warehouses, and large offices spanning multiple floors. There is truly no job too large for us to handle.
With over three decades in the restoration industry, you can count on SERVPRO of Chesterfield and SERVPRO of Tri-Cities, Plus to make your commercial water damage, "Like it never even happened."
How Does a Hurricane Form?
Anyone who’s experienced one before knows that hurricanes can be one of the most damaging and dangerous storms that you can have in the U.S. While you may already know this, and maybe when to most expect them to occur, how familiar are you with the process of how hurricanes form? Knowing what causes hurricanes can help you to better prepare and keep your family safe during these severe weather events.
Hurricanes and other tropical storms form in the same way. Out in the ocean, near the equator where the water is warm. When the ocean water evaporates this moist air rises, as it goes higher and cools it condenses into water droplets, which is how storm clouds are created. The winds over the Atlantic Ocean are very strong and as they blow across the waters, when combined with these storm clouds, they can begin blowing into a circular pattern. This is the beginnings of a tropical cyclone. These cyclones have four stages of growth ending at a hurricane.
1) Tropical Disturbance – This is characterized by a mass of storm clouds that has begun to pick up circulation and a slight potential for damage. Winds in a tropical disturbance do not exceed 24mph.
2) Tropical Depression – Once wind speeds have reached between 25-39mph a cyclone depression can form. As warm air rises from the storm and cools, this release of heat causes the top level of storm clouds to warm. This increases air pressure and shifts the winds outward from the center of the storm. As the winds move away and the air pressure drops, more warm air from the ocean’s surface rises. As this cycle continues the storm begins to spin faster and increase in wind speed.
3) Tropical Storm – Past 39pmh, this is now considered a tropical storm. The winds are spinning fast enough now that the clouds start to gather into the telltale circular shape we’ve all seen on the weather channel. This is when a storm is given a name. These storms can grow quickly and are definitely a sign that you should begin storm preparations should you find one is forecasted to head your way.
4) Hurricane – Once a tropical storm reaches 74mph wind speeds it is considered a hurricane. These storms are typically around 300 miles wide but can grow vastly larger. The largest to date is Hurricane Sandy which reached as wide as 1,150 miles or about half the length of the east coast.
Now that you know how these hurricanes form, you’ll hopefully be able to better understand how to best keep your family safe during these storms. Our SERVPRO of Chesterfield and SERVPRO of Tri-Cities, Plus is a proud member of the SERVPRO Disaster Recovery Team. With strategic placement all over the United States the SERVPRO Disaster Recovery Team is equipped to help with any size disaster and has participated in the recovery efforts in storms like Hurricane Katrina, Harvey, and Sandy. We’re here to help get you and your family back on track after a natural disaster.
Check for Moisture in Your Home
Moisture in your property is never a good thing, however if you have an older property, it is much more susceptible to damage from unwanted issues. As your property ages it’s ability to keep moisture out lessens, so when you experience things like heavy rainfall or high levels of humidity water can leak in where it shouldn’t be such as your windows, doors, crawlspace, and attic. Small amounts of moisture may not do any noticeable damage, but if left untreated it can begin causing serious issues to your home or business. Proper and regular maintenance of your home can help to prevent this. For example, you should check the seals around your doors and windows every Spring after it starts to warm up to ensure that the cold weather did not do any damage to them.
If you do however find that there is moisture in your home or business, SERVPRO of Chesterfield and SERVPRO of Tri-Cities is available to help! Our team of highly trained technicians will be able to use specialized equipment to help ensure that we locate the source of the moisture and that everything is properly dried out. Using things like hygrometers and moisture sensors allows us to ensure that the drying process is going as efficiently as possible and that there aren’t any hidden pockets of moisture that were missed.
Water damage can happen quickly and it’s important to take care of it as fast as possible to avoid any secondary damages. That’s why our team is available 24/7, 365 days a year for all of your emergency water damage needs. Please give us a call and let us know what we can do for you!
Prepare Your Home for Summer Showers
Summer is almost here! The sun is shining, and the temperature is warming up, but this also means that it’s time for the summer rain! It’s important to take some time and make sure that your home is ready for the wet weather and also that the harsh winter hasn’t caused any damage. Here are a few things that you should look out for:
- Gutters – With potentially lots of rain on the horizon, your gutters are one of the main defenses you have at keeping water away from your home. Be sure to clean them out and clear any clogs. The heavy weight of snow and ice could have also caused some damage so you should also check to see if there are any leaks or cracks that need to be fixed. Finally, make sure that your downspout is properly aimed so that water coming from your gutters flows away from the home and doesn’t puddle near it.
- Windows – The winter weather can be brutal on the fixtures of your home. You should check the screens and make sure they aren’t damaged. Additionally, you should make sure there are no signs of leaks in the seals/caulking of your window to help prevent water damage and drafts.
- Roof – Look over your roof for any damaged or missing shingles that need replaced. You should also go into your attic and check for any signs of moisture or leaks.
- Siding – Cold temperatures and ice can cause damage to your siding. Walk around the outside of your house and look for any siding that may be extra worn or cracked and needs to be replaced.
- Foundation – Check the foundation of your home for any cracks that may have formed or gotten worse from the cold. A good rule of thumb is if you can fit a coin into the crack you might want to consider having someone come and inspect it to make sure it doesn't need to be repaired.
While this is no means an exhaustive list it’s a good place to start when making sure your home is ready for summer. Proper home maintenance goes a long way in preventing your house from being damaged by the elements, but sometimes things happen. Should you find your home struck by water damage from a summer rainstorm SERVPRO of Chesterfield and SERVPRO of Tri-Cities, Plus is here to help. Our team of professionals are available to help get your home back to “Like it never even happened.” Give us a call and let us know what we can do for you!