Recent Water Damage Posts
Water Damage Hazards!
Do not hesitate to contact SERVPRO® of Panthersville at (678) 515-8602 when disaster strikes from water damages!
The safety hazards and precautions associated with water damage restoration are as follows:
Mixing water and electricity creates a potential for disaster, and electrical hazards exists everywhere on the typical water damage job site. Water that comes into the building from either a roof leak or from water pipes in the attic is likely to intrude into the wiring system. Floods may also cause water to intervene into the wiring system.
The first item to check is the power distribution box. Turning off all circuit breakers at the power distribution panel is the easiest way to protect you, your Crews, and building occupants from electrical shock hazards. If only a portion of the building is affected, then turn off all circuits that provides power to the damaged areas if water has intruded into wall cavities and electrical outlets, or when electrical outlets are located on the floor. Use either a lockout device or tagout device when circuits are turned off to prevent shock hazards.
Storm damaged structures might be weakened and pose hazards. Floods and earthquakes can cause considerable damage to a building foundation or to the bearing partitions under and around a structure. Storm surge and wave action from a hurricane can undermine foundations or damage pilings in pier-type construction. Long-term exposure to water may destroy the structural reliability of materials, such as particle board and drywall, which creates a hazard for workers and occupants. Determine the potential structural hazards before proceeding with mitigation and restoration services.
Hazardous chemicals or hazardous materials, lead, and asbestos may be present in some water damaged buildings. Be alert for hazardous materials and do not try to handle or remove them unless you are certified to handle hazardous materials. Use qualified Subcontractors to remove and dispose of hazardous materials.
Slip, Trip, and Fall Hazards
Water damaged structures and the restoration processes can create numerous slip, trip, and fall hazards. Wet surfaces are usually slick, equipment hoses, and power cords provide ample opportunity for workers and occupants to slip, trip, or fall. Post warning signs and brief occupants about the hazards. Slippery floors are a common hazard in water damaged situations. People may not recognize the potential hazard of walking from a wet carpeted surface onto a hard floor surface, such as vinyl tile. Wet shoes may not slip much on the carpet, but when the person steps onto the hard floor surface then a serious slip hazard exists. Ensure that occupants understand this hazard.
Hoses and power cords may become a tangled maze for occupants and workers to navigate during emergency services. During the drying stage, equipment power cords may be a problem for occupants. Secure dehumidifier and air mover cords to limit the hazard during the drying phase. Floating carpets also present a trip hazard. Ensure occupants understand that they should not be walking on carpet that is being floated.
Frozen Pipes Prevention and Thawing Tips
If you have already experienced a burst pipe, contact SERVPRO® of Panthersville at (678) 515-8602 to prevent structural damages and mold.
Water expands when it freezes, which is a unique characteristic. By allowing water to freeze and expand inside your pipes can lead to a tremendous buildup of pressure, which eventually causes your pipes to burst. You can save yourself from severe water damages if you learn how to avoid frozen pipes.
Preventing Frozen Pipes
Before the harsh cold of winter sets in there are a few important steps to take to reduce the possibility of frozen pipes, which include:
- Investigate your home and determine whether there are areas that are not being heated properly and are significantly colder than the rest of the home. Insulate any water pipes located in the area.
- Ensure that you drain all water from swimming pools and sprinkler supply lines.
- Close the indoor valves that supply your outdoor spigots, and then keep the outdoor spigots open and allow them to drain completely.
- Keep the garage door closed if any water pipes are located in your garage.
- If the temperatures outside plummets below freezing, then let water drip from your faucets at all times. By keeping even a small amount of water moving through your pipes significantly reduces the possibility of freezing.
- Never allow the temperature in your house to plunge below 55 degrees.
Thawing Frozen Pipes
If you are only getting a small dribble of water from your faucet, then chances are you are experiencing a frozen pipe. Here are some simple ways to thaw your frozen pipe before it bursts:
- Heat the pipe using a portable space heater, electric blanket, or hair drier.
- Keep the water running. As the frozen pipe begins to melt, then water will flow through the frozen area and helps melt the ice.
- If you have one frozen pipe, then you more likely have others. Check every faucet in your house and attempt to locate all of the frozen pipes. If you are unable to locate the other frozen pipes, then call a licensed Plumber before they burst and cause water damage.
How to Prevent Water Damage in your Home
Contact SERVPRO® of Panthersville at (678) 515-8602 for professional water damage restoration services.
Keeping your house safe from water damage is relatively easy. Review the following list of things you can do to keep your house free of water damage.
- Clean your gutters—ensure they are free from debris that can clog and cause water damage.
- Check your downspouts—your downspouts should be directed 5 to 10 feet away from the house.
- Slope your yard—keep water flowing away from your house, not into it. Ensuring that the landscaping flows water away from the house is essential.
- Check your sump pump—you want to ensure that it is working so, at minimum, test it at least once a year. Having a backup sump pump on standby (in case the first one fails) is advisable.
- Look for leaky pipes—make repairs before a small leak turns into a big one.
- Watch where you plant—some plants and trees have invasive root systems that will compromise your drainage system, water lines, septic tank, pipes, or foundations.
- Ceiling and attic check—ensure that you do not see any wet spots on the ceiling and attic above, because they will eventually spread below.
- Repair old, tired caulking—check doors and windows along with bathtub and sink fixtures to ensure that your caulking is not cracked.
- Water bill anomalies—double check your water bill. If it has skyrocketed for no apparent reason, then it may be due to a leak.
- Inspect the roof—look for missing or damaged shingles that can cause water to leak into your home.
- Use a drain snake, not chemicals—a clogged drain is a nuisance, but did you know chemical drain cleaners can eat away at your pipes? Try your luck with a drain snake first.
- Do not pour grease or fat down your sink—pour fat and grease into an empty can and throw it away. Your pipes will thank you.
- Inspect washing machine supply lines—check out the cold and hot water supply hoses and look for cracks and other wear and tear. It is recommended that you replace hoses every five years.
- Check the floor around your toilets, tubs, showers, and sinks—look for any soft spots or moisture. You might need a Plumber to fix any leaks.
- Check your hot water heater—schedule a plumbing inspection, look for signs of corrosion, and check your maintenance instructions. You may want to flush the tank every six months to remove sediment.
- Measure the humidity levels—do you regularly have condensation on your windows? The relative humidity in your home should range between 30 and 50 percent. A humidifier may correct sporadic humidity fluctuations, but ongoing high-humidity levels may be a sign of a more serious issue that could lead to mold and mildew that may require a professional.
Primary Damage Versus Secondary Damage
SERVPRO® of Panthersville Technicians mitigates to stop primary damages from becoming permanent, and to prevent secondary damages from occurring.
SERVPRO® of Panthersville Technicians are familiar with the damaging effects that water has on various types of materials. Our Technicians can identify the following three types of damages:
- Pre-existing damage
- Primary damage
- Secondary damage
Primary damages in a water loss situation result when materials are in direct contact with water. Examples of primary water damages to materials are as follows:
- Delamination of carpet backings
- Swelling and buckling of hardwood floors
- Rusting of metal surfaces
- Weakening of adhesives and glues
Secondary damages in a water loss result when materials are exposed indirectly to water. When moisture evaporates into the air more quickly than moisture is being dehumidified from the air, then secondary damages can result as higher humidity slows the rate of drying. Examples of secondary water damages to materials are as follows:
- Absorption of water from the air as a result of high humidity.
- Absorption of water that has migrated from other areas of the structure.
- Absorption of water by hygroscopic materials that causes swelling.
- Mold growth
The damages get worse as time prolongs.
Tips to Prevent Water Pollution
Contact SERVPRO® of Panthersville at (678) 515-8602 if your property is damaged by water pollution.
Protect the earth from home toxic waste
Many of the same chemicals that make household products effective are harmful when released into the environment. If misused or disposed of improperly, many commonly used products have the potential to become household hazardous waste.
Household hazardous waste includes paints, oils, batteries, and pesticides. Improper disposal of these types of products includes pouring them on the ground, down the drain, into a storm drain, or directly into a waterway.
Some of these items might be kept under the sink or in the garage for extended periods of time, and as their containers age, the risk of leakage increases. Once exposed to the environment, toxins could soak into the ground or be washed down a storm drain, which could lead to pollution in our lakes and streams.
Follow these tips to prevent water pollution:
- Only buy the amount you need for a project.
- Many liquid home products can be solidified using cat litter, saw dust, and other absorbent materials, and then placed in the trash.
- Many local retailers and organizations offer recycling programs, and they will accept home products for disposal.
- Consult the product label for disposal guidance.
Water Damage After Effects
Water damage can be deceptive. Reason being, water penetrates into structural cavities creating trapped pockets of saturation. The detection of water in these areas can often only be discovered with sophisticated moisture detection meters. Undetected moisture will continue to cause damage. This damage will cause odors. Greater damages surface when materials delaminate, shrink, split, and further deteriorate to where costly repairs are required.
Besides simply removing excess water, SERVPRO® of Panthersville Production staff are IICRC-certified, and they have the knowledge and equipment to further dry a home or facility (including sub-structure materials) completely back to preloss conditions. Through timely response and the careful monitoring of water damage, mold, and other health issues can be prevented. If water damage has been present too long, then mold will occur.
SERVPRO® of Panthersville professionals have the training and experience to identify moisture sources, evaluate mold growth (visible or suspected), contain damage, remove contamination, and dry materials to ensure that mold will not return.