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What to Do When You Need Emergency Storm Restoration

10/14/2022 (Permalink)

A house with a damage roof and a fallen tree in the front yard A house with a damage roof and a fallen tree on the house and front yard

Storm damage is an unpredictable issue that people all over the world encounter every day. Because of this, it’s imperative that you have a storm restoration plan if you have or ever encounter it in the future. Knowing how you’re going to deal with the problem at hand can help ease you and your family’s worries about the future. Here’s what you need to do in order to get your life back to normal after encountering storm damage.
Identify the severity of the damage;
Before you start hiring people to take care of the restoration process it’s important to get a few steps out of the way first. It’s understandable that you’re in a hurry to fix things but failing to identify the damage and the severity of it can lead to you paying for repairs you didn’t need. Once you’re sure that it’s safe to inspect the situation you need to determine what is considered storm damage and what isn’t. Hiring a trusted professional to assess the situation can help you decide on what the best course of action is going forward. If you can, you should also try to provide pictures of the damage before anything is moved around so you can prove to your insurance what happened.
Contact your insurance provider;
Upon receiving a damage assessment you should call your insurance company so you can make a claim regarding the situation. You should be thorough when providing the details of your home or business’s deterioration due to the weather. Different types of damages are covered in different ways. Whether or not the building is suffering from wind damage, water damage, or falling debris can change the situation. If your building had problems beforehand then that could change things as well. Your homeowner’s insurance provider should instruct you on what to do next along with putting you in touch with some emergency restoration companies.
Working with a restoration company;
When hiring a restoration company it’s important to do your research into them beforehand. You don’t want a crew working on your home or business who is planning to cut corners or overlook the small details. Carelessness can lead to more repairs down the road so you make sure that before you hire a business you look at its reviews and company policy. You also need to know who’s going to be where and when so you don’t encounter any scheduling conflicts.
What is our mission?

SERVPRO of Winston-Salem North is here to assess your storm damage and determine the next step. If you need a roofing evaluation or have suffered exterior, Water, mold or other damages due to storms or other natural disasters, contact us and schedule a free estimate and start on the road to recovery.

When Disaster Strikes Your Complay Every Minute Counts

10/14/2022 (Permalink)

Two SERVPRO techs cleaning shoot off the ceiling from fire damage There are two SERVPRO techs cleaning shoot off the ceiling from fire damage

Unforeseen disasters can affect your business far beyond the monetary cost of repairing a damaged building or replacing inventory and equipment. In fact, revenue loss due to business interruption can be the most significant impact. The experts at SERVPRO of Winston-Salem North are ready to help 24/7/365.

Water Damage Restoration
As an experienced leader in commercial water damage restoration, we won’t rest until your property is fully restored. From drying to removing damaged materials to fighting microbial growth, we set the standard in setting things right.
We Offer a Wide Range of Water Damage Restoration Services, Including:
Carpet and upholstered furniture restoration
Content and document drying
Drying and dehumidifying
Burst and leaking pipe repair
Severe Weather Restoration, and much more.

Hurricanes can wreak havoc on your property. The damage that could impact your home is expansive and can include any and/or all of the following: flooding from heavy rains, powerful winds that can destroy walls and cause damage to your property’s structure, and storm surges that can quickly engulf your business if it’s near a coastal region.
Fire Damage Restoration
Fires can result in extensive damage. Smoke continues to destroy your structure and its contents even after the fire is out. The residue left behind is hazardous and can cause health problems if it is not taken care of correctly and thoroughly. The ServiceMaster Restore team is more than ready to handle all of your fire damage restoration needs, including:
Inspecting the structural integrity of the building for safety
Identifying the source to determine the type of fire that occurred
Evaluating all areas that suffered water damage as a result of fire suppression efforts to identify those that may need treatment
Salvaging of product stock, raw materials, commodities, and machinery
Removing contents from the building & securing removal, storage, and cleaning of sensitive files and data storage devices
Packing out the remaining contents for cleaning and storage
Evaluating carpets and floor coverings that may need to be removed
Cleaning, eliminating odors, and deodorizing surfaces to preloss condition

Why Use SERVPRO for Challenging Clean-ups

10/14/2022 (Permalink)

A SERVPRO tech holding a trash bag and opening a refrigerator One of our SERVPRO techs holding a trash bag with waste and opening a refrigerator

The restoration of your property following a biohazard event or a crime needs experienced and empathetic professionals like those at SERVPRO to safely clean them to our professional standards.
In the event that your property needs hazmat, trauma or crime scene cleanup, SERVPRO can help you. This type of situation requires competence, experience and respect for all involved. Our skilled professionals will always treat your property and the people involved with the greatest empathy and respect in the face of trying circumstances. Once the police have completed their investigation of a crime scene, cleanup and restoration can begin. This involves an assessment of your property to determine the proper equipment and cleaning products needed.
In the event that your property needs hazmat, trauma or crime scene cleanup, SERVPRO can help you. This type of situation requires competence, experience and respect for all involved. Our skilled professionals will always treat your property and the people involved with the greatest empathy and respect in the face of trying circumstances. Once the police have completed their investigation of a crime scene, cleanup and restoration can begin. This involves an assessment of your property to determine the proper equipment and cleaning products needed.
Because traumatic events often involve biological and chemical contaminants, it’s very important to know that the restoration process is being handled in compliance with all government, environmental and health regulations. Our professionals do this in the safest way possible for you, your property and everyone living or working on your property. We are trained and prepared both physically and mentally to handle biohazard, trauma, and crime scene cleanup and restoration with respect and professionalism.

Some of the Most Common Ways Fire Starts

10/13/2022 (Permalink)

Firefighters putting out a house fire Some firefighters putting out a house fire

A fire alarm system from Circle City Security Systems could be the difference between life and death. A fire can be a devastating blow to any home or business. Knowing what you’re up against can help reduce the chance of a fire occurring significantly. Here are the top 8 most common fire starters.
Smoking Indoors
Smoking in a commercial building is illegal in almost every building in the United States. Many people, however, still smoke in their homes. People who have smoked for a long period of time typically begin to underestimate the power of one errant ash. You shouldn’t allow smoking in your home as it is not only a fire hazard but it is damaging to the structure.
Unmaintained Dryer Vents
Lint can quickly accumulate in dryer vents if they are not cleaned regularly. Lint burns extremely quickly and it only takes one spark or too much heat for the entire house to go up in flames. When installing dryer exhaust vents, avoid making the vent turn at 180 degree angles; that is a place for lint to easily accumulate.
Faulty Electrical Equipment
Your toaster from the 70’s may have sentimental value to you but perhaps you should just put it on display and buy a new one for toasting. Over worn cords and frayed electrical wires in electronics are a huge fire hazard.
Overloading Outlets
Another electrical hazard is overloading an outlet or extension cord. Never plug multiple power outlets into each other. A circuit breaker is a good protection from overloading but they do not guarantee safety from an electric fire from overload.
Candles
Candles look and smell great and can make your house feel like home. Unfortunately they can also make your house into an inferno. You shouldn’t ever leave the house with candles burning. Also make sure all candles are on a sturdy surface or holder that can’t fall over or be knocked over by a child or pet.
Speaking of children, they’re pyromaniacs!
It is important to talk to your children about the dangers of playing with fire. A large percentage of fires started are from children playing with it. Don’t leave matches or lighters laying around for a child to find and make sure they know they’re off limits.
Space Heaters
Space heaters or heat dishes are a great tool to help get warmth to unventilated parts of the house or the garage or shed. They do have the potential to be very dangerous, however. Nothing should be left to close in front or back of a space heater. The unit itself can get very hot, not to mention the air it disperses.
Cooking
Perhaps the biggest cause of fires is careless cooking habits. You should always be attentive to your food especially when hot oil is involved. Open flame stoves are especially dangerous. Always keep a fire extinguisher in the kitchen.

Smoke Can Effect Your Business

10/10/2022 (Permalink)

Smoke coming out of apartment windows Smoke coming out of apartment windows

Restoring your business after fire damage to its pre-fire condition is our main goal. As a leading fire damage restoration company, we specialize in fire damage cleanup and fire restoration, smoke damage cleanup, and removal of smoke odors. Our team will deep-clean and remove soot from walls, carpets, and upholstery. Beyond the fire damage, smoke and soot can be toxic, creating a hazardous situation. Even if a fire is contained in one area, smoke and soot can travel throughout a structure. Our professionals are highly-trained, with the experience, tools, and knowledge to clean up fire damage and remove the smell of smoke. In keeping with our goal to restore your home and cherished possessions to their pre-fire condition, we use appropriate personal protective measures to safely clean, deodorize and restore your property. As a business owner, you know that any disruption in business affects your bottom line. We have large loss teams that work alongside our local SERVPRO experts. These restoration professionals can respond quickly and understand your unique set of problems when faced with fire damage cleanup and smoke damage removal. Our goal is to help you get your business up and running again as soon as possible after a fire.

Avoiding Winter Storm Damage

10/6/2022 (Permalink)

House collapsing due to snow piling up on the roof  roof of a house collapsing due to snow pilling up from a snow storm

As you read this article, some business owners have already experienced damage from hurricanes. But more bad weather from winter storms — including windstorms, snow and, ice — is coming soon. Is your business prepared?

Winter storms rank third in terms of the dollar value of damage they cause, second only to hurricanes and tornadoes. According to Forbes, a “simple” snowstorm can cost well over a billion dollars. The billion dollar losses come from lost productivity and sales.

Are You Prepared?

Snow, ice, sleet: Organizations operating in areas that have freezing temperatures have specific insurance needs. The basic “named perils” property policy covers your buildings and contents from damage or loss caused by specific perils, or causes of loss, named in the policy. These include fire, lightning, explosion, windstorm or hail, smoke, and more. However, these policies do not include coverage for falling objects; weight of snow, ice, or sleet; water damage or collapse.

The most common types of property damage caused by severe winter weather are roof damage or collapse due to snow, ice or sleet, and water damage from burst pipes or “ice dams.” Ice dams occur when water fails to flow properly through gutters, allowing it to seep into a building, damaging ceilings and walls. The resulting water damage would not be covered by a basic “named perils” policy, nor would any of these other types of damage.

High hurricane- risk areas: In certain high-risk coastal areas of Southern states (including Alabama, Florida, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Texas), the standard business property policy excludes windstorm coverage. In these areas, business owners might have to obtain their windstorm coverage from a state-sponsored insurance pool, while a private insurer writes the rest of their property coverage. We can help you determine the amount of coverage you need.

Preventive Measures

Although you might have the right coverage for freezes, snow, ice, or windstorm damage, you still need to maintain your property. Before winter starts, take the opportunity to evaluate your roofs.

Large, flat roofs, those with heavy insulation, and those in shady areas have highest risk of dangerous snow and ice build-up, as do roofs of varying levels, which can create drifts. Skylights and vents can also cause structural weaknesses and leaks. Poorly insulated areas of roofs can cause problems by allowing heat to escape, causing snow to melt and refreeze.

Snow causes the most problems when it accumulates over time. The actual weight of the snow doesn’t depend on its depth, but rather the amount of water that it contains. Water content varies because of the difference in snow crystal structure. In general, snow that falls at warmer temperatures will be denser; snow also packs down over time and becomes denser. Zurich Re, a reinsurance company, estimated that one foot of dry snow weighs about three pounds per square foot, while wet snow can weigh as much as 21 pounds per square foot. If snow accumulations occur in your area, plan ahead for safe removal.

Likewise, in high-wind areas, roofs, windows, and doors can allow wind to enter and are your building’s most vulnerable areas. Checking structures on a regular basis to ensure they are in proper working order and meet current codes can help you prevent major damage. Ensure your company has enough business income coverage to weather a loss in income due to damage from snow, ice, windstorm, or other covered cause.

SERVPRO can also help you prepare with our Emergency Ready Profile. Have everything you need when disaster strakes at the touch of a button on our free mobile app. SERVPRO is faster to ant size disaster! 

Common Storm Damage Scenarios

10/6/2022 (Permalink)

A picture of a tree damage from lighting with a tornado and lighting in the background There is a damage tree that has been struck by lighting in the middle of the picture with a tornado and lighting in the background.

Severe storms can be frightening and dangerous, and safety has to be your first priority. If your area has seen major problems, be careful. If you think your home has been structurally damaged or if flood risk remains, don’t go inside until a professional says it’s safe. Spending a few nights at a friend’s house or in an emergency shelter is a small price to pay.
Once the disaster has passed, it’s important to assess the damage and get started with cleanup and restoration. Below, we’ve provided information about the damage different kinds of storms can cause and how you can protect your property value in different scenarios.
Insurance Coverage
Severe damage from most storms is covered under home and business insurance policies, but the specifics vary. The amount you are responsible for paying depends on your premiums and deductibles, the age and structure of the building, the extent of your damage, property values in your neighborhood and much more.
Most storms are considered acts of God, which means that your insurer can’t single you out for rate increases. However, failing to file claims in a timely manner can make you ineligible for coverage, and entire neighborhoods can be subject to rate increases following disasters. That means you should always file claims as quickly as possible so you don’t end up paying more in future premiums without receiving the benefits now.
First, you should document the damage to your home to the best of your ability. Take a lot of photos and be sure to hang on to any receipts and documents related to appliances and maintenance work you completed prior to the storm. Then, contact a storm damage restoration contractor and your insurance company. Your insurer will send a claim representative or assessor. The best contractors can work directly with insurers to help you save as much money as possible.
Winter Storm Damage
Winter storms ravage much of the U.S. and Canada every year, and areas that don’t get hit with snow often deal with ice storms and freezing rain. When you’re dealing with blizzards, lake effect storms and snow squalls, damage to your home can include roof and structural damage from heavy snow as well as damage to fascia, exterior pipes and siding. These wintry storms often come with high winds, which can exacerbate damage by causing shingles to break loose. These storms can wreak havoc on utility lines.
Winter storms and freezing weather can also create ice dams, which trap water in between your roof and a layer of ice. These can be easy to miss, but are important to be aware of because they can quickly lead to leaks and then to mold and structural damage.
After a storm, don’t get on the roof or climb into the attic until you’re sure it’s safe. You or your home restoration contractor should check for any signs of leakage in the attic, missing fascia and shingles, bent or detached exhaust pipes, damaged roof vents and damage to the valleys and edges where your roof meets the walls.
When ice storms hit, you may need to be even more cautious. These storms are characterized by leaving at least a quarter of an inch of ice on surfaces. They can cause roofs to collapse, trees to break and power lines to snap. Try to stay in your home until the ice storm has passed and plan ahead with emergency food, water, supplies and power sources.
Hail Damage
Hail can happen anywhere, but some parts of the U.S. see it more often than others. States in the Midwest are most susceptible. These storms are most common between May and September. Hail pellets are usually between .2 inches and 1.75 inches in size, but can be much bigger. In fact, the biggest known hailstone came in at 7.9 inches in South Dakota in 2010.
Hail damage isn’t always visible. When it is, you can look for cracked shingles, dents in shingles in a random pattern, and bent roof vents and pipes. You can also sustain damage to siding. Invisible damage comes into play when substrate materials beneath the shingles are damaged. If you think you have hail damage, we highly recommend getting an expert opinion. This kind of damage can lead to serious roof leaks that can spread and cause structural problems.
Lightning and Thunderstorm Damage
Lightning storms can occur anywhere in the U.S., and they bring the threat of fires and severe structural damage. Even if your lightning rods work properly by channeling the energy to the ground, it’s possible to see damage to electrical wiring, appliances, antennas, satellite dishes, cable or telephone lines, and steel framework. Unless there are signs of fire, be sure to stay indoors until the storm is over because your home will protect you.
Thunderstorms come with risks even if you aren’t hit by lightning. You could see dangerous flash flooding, hail and high winds.
Storm-related Flood Damage and Tidal Surges
Flooding presents a serious risk to your home and your safety. According to the U.S. National Severe Storms Laboratory, floods kills more people every year than lightning, hurricanes and tornadoes combined.
When it comes to structures, flooding can lead to dangerous contamination and damage to drywall, support beams and foundations. You are at risk for mold within the first 24 hours of a flood, so it’s vital to stop the water from flowing and start remediation quickly.
Different types of floods come with different risks. River floods and flash floods are common when snow melts and have been known to completely overwhelm structures. Coastal floods and storm surges are even more dangerous, and usually lead to evacuation warnings. These can destroy homes entirely, so it’s best to listen to weather reports and plan ahead. Debris flows, which are often made up of heavy mud and plant material, can crush houses and sweep them away.
High Winds, Tornadoes and Hurricane Damage
High winds can occur virtually anywhere, and thousands of tornadoes and hurricanes hit the U.S. every year. Severe winds are defined as exceeding 50-60 mph and are categorized as follows:
Straight-line winds: This broad category includes all winds not associated with rotation
Downdrafts: These winds are small columns of air that sink quickly toward the ground
Downbursts: These winds, which can be as bad as tornadoes, are a result of strong downbursts and are usually associated with thunderstorms
Microbursts: These small, highly concentrated downbursts can exceed 168 mph and can be wet or dry.
Gust fronts: These occur when cold air clashes with warm air from a thunderstorm
Derechos: These long-lived, widespread wind storms come with a band of multiple showers or thunderstorms
Haboobs: These are walls of dust pushed along the ground by thunderstorm downdrafts
Bow echoes: These winds are shaped like an archer’s bow and can produce severe straight-line winds and even tornadoes
Tornadoes: These destructive vortexes can exceed 300 mph and travel over dry land
Cyclones and Hurricanes: In the U.S., these tropical storms rotate inward toward areas of low atmospheric pressure and are most common near the Gulf of Mexico and the eastern seaboard.
Damage from wind can be widespread and can affect not only your structure but also surrounding landscaping and asphalt. Be aware of the potential for falling trees and poles and damaged power lines, and take care of these problems right away. After the storm, examine your property for structural damage to the home, including windows, siding and roofs. In the most extreme scenarios, roofs can be blown clean off.

Hire SERVPRO! With over 50 years of experience in Cleaning, Restoration, and Construction, you can trust us to get the job done, and done right. We make any size disaster Like it never even happened.

Hospitality Cleaning & Restoration

10/6/2022 (Permalink)

One of SERVPRO tech cleaning a hotel stairwell A SERVPRO tech cleaning a hotel stairwell

As a leader in hotel restoration, we work quickly to minimize the impact of damage to your business operations.
As managers and owners of places where people go to relax and enjoy themselves – hotels, restaurants, resorts – you know how important it is to keep guests happy. It’s also important to know who you can call on when things go wrong. From minor inconveniences to major events like fires and natural disasters, hospitality cleaning services are sometimes necessary. SERVPRO technicians respond quickly and work with your staff to assess your restoration needs so that you can continue serving your guests. We will help prioritize spaces and isolate the damage, and then we can restore the affected area to its preloss condition.
SERVPRO’s experience in the cleanup and restoration of hospitality facilities includes:
Hotels
Convention Centers
Resorts
Casinos
Entertainment venues
Restaurants.

We are here to help you keep your business running smoothly

Commercial Water Damage Restoration

10/6/2022 (Permalink)

A business storefront with severe water damage a business storefront that has suffered from severe water damage.

When your business has a water damage situation, you need immediate help to restore your facility while minimizing downtime. Water damage to your industrial or commercial property can be particularly devastating. Not only is there the damage itself that needs repaired quickly, but there’s the disruption of your service to customers and employees, as well as the negative effect on revenue. SERVPRO professionals are prepared to evaluate your water-damaged property. We want to help you understand the severity of the water damage to your commercial property so that you’re able to make the best decisions on moving forward with the restoration process. Whether you’re dealing with minor water damage to your commercial property or a large-loss event, we can develop a restoration plan to help ensure your property is clean, dry and restored to its pre-damaged condition. Our customer-focused professionals will assess the water damage to your property. Then we’ll help you understand the severity of the damage so you’re able to make the best decisions for the restoration of your business. Our top-notch people use only the most advanced equipment to detect hidden moisture and extract standing water. We have more than 50 years of experience in repair and restoration so you can trust us to help you develop a water damage restoration plan to help ensure your business is clean, dry and restored to its pre-damaged condition.

How Just a Small Leak Can Be a Big Problem

10/3/2022 (Permalink)

This picture is the bottom of a toilet and water on the fool around it This picture is the bottom of a toilet and water on the fool around it

A running toilet can quickly become a costly problem. The U. S. Geological Survey estimates a single leaking toilet can waste an extra 22 gallons of water every day, adding up to over 8,000 lost gallons of water in a year. Even a small leak can mean hundreds of wasted dollars and thousands of gallons of wasted water.

How to Know If Your Toilet Is Leaking
The easiest way to know you have a leak is to listen. Many times, a running toilet will make a constant sound, even after you are done flushing. You can determine if your toilet’s tank is leaking by placing a few drops of food coloring in your tank water. If the color seeps into your toilet bowl when you are not flushing, you have a leak.

Why a Toilet Leak Is so Bad
Since your toilet uses the most water of any plumbing fixture in your home, even a small leak can equal a big loss of water. Here are the many risks from a leaking toilet:

Wasted Water
If you have more than one leaking toilet, the gallons of lost water can rapidly multiply. At a potential loss of 22 gallons of water per leaking toilet per day, hundreds of gallons of water may be wasted in a very short period of time.

Added Expense
A leaking toilet is literally money down the drain. If you notice your water bills rising and aren’t sure why, you may have a running toilet.

Annoying Noise
A constantly running toilet can quickly become a distracting annoyance, and spending time jiggling the hand hoping for a little silence is not how most of us would choose to spend our time.

Structural Damage to Your Home
If your toilet is leaking from the base, water can seep into your floors. Over time, this water can damage the structural support beneath and around your toilet and may lead to unsafe conditions in the floor of your bathroom.

Health Hazard
Just as leaking water can damage the structure of your home, even a small amount of water can lead to dangerous mold growth. If your toilet is leaking into your walls or floor, this mold can grow undetected, causing health concerns for you and your family.

If you suffer from water damage from a leaking toilet SERVPRO is here to help! We can make any size water damage Like it never even happened.