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How to prevent storm damage

8/16/2019 (Permalink)

Think about your landscaping

Having creative landscaping designed to guide water away from your home’s foundation can help prevent flooding in your home. It's important that the ground slopes away from your house. There should be a slope of a quarter- inch per foot heading downhill away from your home's foundation. If you need to, add some soil to create this grade. Take advantage of gravity to pull the water away from the house and prevent summer storm damage. 

Pack up outdoor furniture- Here’s the deal:

Your patio table and chairs look great. But in a storm, they can get turned into missiles if they get picked up by a strong gust of wind. And then they can get thrown right into your house. Ouch.

Anyways, be sure to pack up all your outdoor furniture and decorations to prevent that from happening. Avoid the chair-smashes-a-window scenario and spare yourself the headache of dealing with the storm damage.

Know how to shut off your utilities 

If the weather gets really severe, you may need to turn off your utilities. Know how to do this ahead of time so you’re not guessing and saying “umm” a lot when a storm hits.

https://insurancehub.com/prevent-storm-damage/

SERVPRO of North Arlington is here for all of your restoration needs.

Protect your home

8/16/2019 (Permalink)

Install a Standby Generator

 You’ll have electricity to run essential appliances and your central air system. A standby generator can even reduce your chances of flood damage by keeping your sump pump running.

It’s permanently installed outside your home and fueled by liquid propane or natural gas. Since it’s wired directly into your home’s electrical system, it can automatically restore power in seconds. Price depends on the size of your home and the amount of wattage needed, anywhere from around $3,000 to $16,000.

Tip: If the ticket price is too high, you can opt for a portable generator. They’re fueled by gasoline or propane, and are powerful enough to keep a few appliances and some lights running. Most big-box stores sell portable generators with prices starting at $299. Try the generator-buying guide from “Consumer Reports” for product reviews.

https://www.houselogic.com/finances-taxes/home-insurance/extreme-weather-climate-change/

SERVPRO of North Arlington is here for all of your restoration needs.

Protect Your Home from Severe Weather

8/7/2019 (Permalink)

Consider Steel Doors
After you’ve made shutters for all your windows, start working on your doors. If you live in an area that frequently gets heavy storms, consider installing steel entry doors. High winds can easily tear through double doors, French doors and sliding patio doors that have no structural support between the two sides. 

You may need to purchase and install special hardware to more adequately secure the doors where they meet. Try bolts that fasten the door into the framing at the top and the bottom.     

Remember your roof

A roof in good condition can shield your home's interior from the storm outside. So roof work is another essential step in preparing your house to withstand a severe storm. Apply sealing around your home’s chimney or vent pipes. This will help prevent water from seeping into your home. Hire a contractor to check the structural integrity of the roof system.

Clean out clogged gutters and downspouts. If the rain that accompanies a heavy storm can’t run through the gutters and downspouts, it will spill over the sides, landing in areas where it can soak through to your home’s foundation, causing flooding and structural damage.

https://www.nahb.org/consumers/homeownership/homeownership-articles/protect-your-home-from-severe-weather.aspx

SERVPRO of North Arlington is here for all of your restoration needs.

How to prevent storm damage to your home:

8/7/2019 (Permalink)

Check your yard for dead or diseased trees.

This is a big one for preventing storm maintenance. You may want to call in a trustworthy tree expert to check your yard for dangerous trees.

How can a tree be dangerous?

Well, if the tree is dead, hollowed, or diseased, it may not be able to stand up to the strong winds and rains of a summer storm. Meaning that you may end up with a tree crashing into your house…which is not good. Fortunately, home insurance typically covers falling trees, but it’s best just to get the unsafe trees removed so they don’t put anyone in danger. Or smash your home.

 Secure furniture that could fall.

If you’ve got heavy, tall furniture that could fall, such as bookshelves or cabinets, make sure to anchor them to the wall so they’re secure and won’t fall. Also, move furniture away from the doors or windows.

Have your roof inspected every year.

It’s important to have your roof inspected and maintained each year. This will help you catch any issues and correct them before they get too serious. It’s best to fortify and strengthen your roof so it’s ready to take the walloping of a summer storm. Roof maintenance can even help you save money on your home insurance rates.

https://insurancehub.com/prevent-storm-damage/

 SERVPRO of North Arlington is here for all of your restoration needs.

MOLD PREVENTION TIPS

8/7/2019 (Permalink)

Stay vigilant. If you aren't aware of any toxic mold in your home, keep an occasional eye out for it. "A lot of keeping mold away comes down to maintenance," Schoenberg says. "Anywhere you may have dampness, there can be mold. So look in dark and damp places. And it isn't always in obvious places. Like your washing machine, the tray where you put your soap, open that up and let that dry out." Caulk around the water fixtures. That is, your kitchen and bathroom sink, or any sinks or showers in any rooms. "Leaks in and around showers, sinks and bathtubs are source of mold,"
• Clean out the gutters. Well, at least you were going to get around to this sometime, anyway, right? Not only will you prevent things like flooding, it'll reduce your chance of mold. "Standing water in your gutters due to clogs can lead to water leaking into the eaves, and thus in exterior walls," Bodrozic says.
• Caulk around your windows. On the outside, Bodrozic says. You don't want any leaking after a big rain.
• Take care of any roof leaks. You'll notice if your roof is leaking into your bedroom, of course, but do you have an attic? Or a crawl space over your ceiling? "These leaks can go unnoticed for years, causing mold growth," he says.
• Do you have a crawl space under the home? If you do, check under it, to make sure there's no water accumulating and standing there, Bodrozic says. Sure, it'll be gross, but water can lead to mold and structural problems, Bodrozic warns.

https://loans.usnews.com/what-to-do-if-your-house-has-mold-or-you-think-it-does

SERVPRO of North Arlington is here for all of your restoration needs.

MOLD PREVENTION

8/7/2019 (Permalink)

Places that are often or always damp can be hard to maintain completely free of mold. If there’s some mold in the shower or elsewhere in the bathroom that seems to reappear, increasing the ventilation (running a fan or opening a window) and cleaning more frequently will usually prevent mold from recurring, or at least keep the mold to a minimum.

Fix plumbing leaks and other water problems as soon as possible. Dry all items completely. ¦ Scrub mold off hard surfaces with detergent and water, and dry completely. Absorbent or porous materials, such as ceiling tiles and carpet, may have to be thrown away if they become moldy. Mold can grow on or fill in the empty spaces and crevices of porous materials, so the mold may be difficult or impossible to remove completely. Do not paint or caulk moldy surfaces. Clean up the mold and dry the surfaces before painting. Paint applied over moldy surfaces is likely to peel.

https://www.epa.gov/sites/production/files/2016-10/documents/moldguide12.pdf

 SERVPRO of North Arlington is here for all of your restoration needs.

Staying safe after a storm

8/6/2019 (Permalink)

Dealing with wind or water damage to your home caused by hurricanes, tornadoes, or other severe storms can be both difficult and dangerous. Here are some tips on how keep your family safe and begin to get your life back together after a storm hits.

Staying Safe After a Storm

  • Listen to the radio for advisories and other instructions.
  • Do not venture outside until it has been declared safe to do so.
  • Stay away from downed power lines and avoid standing water or metal objects near downed wires.
  • Leave and do not enter buildings that have sustained structural damage.
  • Stay away from damaged trees and dangling or broken limbs.
  • Do not swim or wade in flood waters.
  • Check on neighbors, especially those who are elderly or disabled.
  • Watch out for snakes or other wild animals.
  • Turn the gas off at the meter if you smell gas.
  • Do not drive unless absolutely necessary.
  • If you must drive, watch for undermined roads and damaged bridges.
  • Do not attempt to drive through flooded streets or bridges.
  • Avoid using candles or other open flames indoors.
  • Keep a fire extinguisher handy at all times.
  • Test battery powered smoke and CO alarms.
  • Make sure your sewer system is working before flushing toilets.
  • Keep pets indoors and use a leash when taking them outside.
  • Operate generators outdoors in the open away from windows and doors.
  • Don’t eat perishable food that has warmed to over 40° F.

https://www.todayshomeowner.com/dealing-with-storm-damage-to-your-home/

SERVPRO of North Arlington is here for all of your restoration needs.

Protection and prevention

8/6/2019 (Permalink)

Despite the inconclusive nature of current research, the CDC and EPA recommend that any mold growth should be dealt with promptly.

Both organizations state that controlling moisture is most crucial to preventing mold from growing indoors. Acting quickly in the event of a leak or spillage is important, and drying areas within 48 hours of exposure to excess moisture should ensure that mold will not grow.

The level of humidity within the home is another important factor. Although it may not be immediately apparent, a high level of moisture in the air will promote mold growth. Condensation on windows is often a sign that humidity is high within a room.

Increasing ventilation by opening windows or using an extractor fan reduces the level of moisture in the air. Humidity can also be reduced in specific rooms by avoiding moisture-producing activities in them, such as drying clothes or using kerosene heaters.

https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/288651.php

SERVPRO of North Arlington is here for all of your restoration needs.

Protection and prevention

8/6/2019 (Permalink)

Increasing ventilation by opening windows or using an extractor fan reduces the level of moisture in the air. Humidity can also be reduced in specific rooms by avoiding moisture-producing activities in them, such as drying clothes or using kerosene heaters.

When cleaning mold from hard surfaces, commercial products, soap and water or a heavily-diluted bleach solution can be used. Always dry surfaces that have been cleaned thoroughly to prevent mold from growing back.

Be wary of porous materials that have been affected by molds, such as fabric or wood. Mold can infiltrate these materials, may be impossible to remove completely and could potentially grow back if the conditions are right. In many cases, it may be best to get rid of items such as these that have been affected for a long period.

Patches of mold that are larger than 3 ft by 3 ft may be best tackled by professional mold cleaning experts.

https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/288651.php

SERVPRO of North Arlington is here for all of you rrestoration needs

After a storm

8/6/2019 (Permalink)

What should I do after my house has been damaged by a storm?

Federal Assistance

The Federal Emergency Management Agency provides a variety of assistance to victims of storm damage. You can get help with temporary housing, with repairs, with meals for your family and with filing insurance claims. Contact the FEMA branch in your area. If the storm damaged many homes in your area, a FEMA representative may be traveling through your neighborhood or available at a local temporary FEMA office. So talk to your local representative for assistance.

Documenting Damage

You'll need to document the damage that has been done by the storm as soon as possible, particularly if your homeowner's insurance only covers certain types of damage. Take photos of the damage, and be sure to document any potential problems, such as mold, crumbling drywall or exposed power lines. It's a good idea to have pictures on file of the normal state of your house. So if you're concerned about a storm that hasn't hit yet, take photos both before and after the storm.

https://homeguides.sfgate.com/should-after-house-damaged-storm-58794.html

SERVPRO of North Arlington is here for all of your restoration needs.