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3 Ways To Handle a Flooded Basement

10/9/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage 3 Ways To Handle a Flooded Basement Water damage in garage in Leawood,KS

Flooding of your home in Leawood, KS, particularly the part of your home that is below ground, is bound to happen sooner or later. When it does, in addition to calling your insurance carrier and a reliable flood remediation specialist, there are some things you can do to protect your home from a basement flood.

1. Prevention

The best way to deal with a flood is to keep it from happening in the first place. Having a sump pump and a backup generator just in case you lose power is a good start. You may also consider updating your exterior drainage system. You can significantly lower your chances of coming home to a flooded basement by making sure that gutters and drainage spouts are clear of debris and that your system directs water away from your foundation rather than toward it.

2. Replacement

If you can't avoid a basement flood, you may have a lot of decisions to make about what to salvage and what to throw away. In general, it's a good idea to discard electrical equipment. While some restoration experts could fix the machines, it's often safer to replace them and maybe even less expensive. You will likely have to replace flooring and drywall as well. Having good flood insurance coverage comes in handy when you make a list of what needs to be replaced.

3. Safety

The main safety rule of flooded areas is simple: Do not walk blindly into floodwaters. When your basement floods, you often cannot see what is lurking beneath the surface. Avoid wading into the water. Siphon out all the water first so that you can see where you are stepping. Floodwater, particularly from storms, is often contaminated, so keeping it out of contact with your skin as much as possible is advisable.

While avoiding a basement flood in the first place is ideal, sometimes water seeps in anyway. When it does flood, remember to play it safe and take measures to protect yourself from further damage in the future.

3 Reasons To Purchase Business Insurance

9/18/2018 (Permalink)

Commercial 3 Reasons To Purchase Business Insurance Water damage can be devastating to your business.

Managing a business in Leawood, KS, can be a rewarding endeavor, allowing you to connect with your community and to share your passions with others. Unfortunately, water damage can be a huge setback to businesses of all types. Business insurance can help protect your company in the event that your commercial property is damaged by water.

Financial Security

With all the time, money and energy it takes to maintain a successful business, liquid damage can create a mess that is costly to repair. Since the damage can happen so quickly, it’s often not possible to protect important documents, products or other valuable items. Recovering and replacing expensive tools and products without insurance can be incredibly expensive. Business insurance often covers the costs of damage caused by floods, burst pipes and other events that result in water damage.

Quick Cleanup

Water can quickly puddle and can result in a tremendous amount of damage to a business. Without insurance, you may spend unnecessary time trying to clean your space to prepare for repairs, and damage from water can even create hazardous environments. However, business insurance ensures that water cleanup is quick, easy and efficient. With your business clean and safe, you’ll be able to reopen your location as soon as possible.

Peace of Mind

Maintaining a business means spending hours every day making sure you give your consumers the best products or experiences, and additional stress can take time away from perfecting your company. Although taking preventative measures to keep your location protected is always a good idea, water destruction cannot always be prevented. Not knowing how to respond if your business is damaged by water can create more stress, but business insurance can give you confidence that your organization can recover if water damages it.

Water damage can be devastating to your business, and without insurance, making repairs can be expensive and time-consuming. Business insurance can ensure that your business is protected in case your property is damaged by water. For more information, visit http://www.SERVPRObluevalley.com/.

Don’t Get Washed Away: Understanding Flood Zones and the Requirements If You’re in One

9/14/2018 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Don’t Get Washed Away: Understanding Flood Zones and the Requirements If You’re in One If you have more questions about zoning, you can always check the Leawood, KS, area for flood and storm damage specialists.

While flooding may not have been a concern in your previous home, you should at least keep it in mind while searching for a new home because there may be specific insurance requirements for particular flood zone designations.

1. Flood Insurance and the FIRM Map

If you are used to living in areas that didn’t require flood insurance, then the Flood Insurance Rate Map (FIRM) is likely a new concept. This map is released and produced by FEMA, in conjunction with local municipalities, to designate the likelihood of flooding in certain areas. These designations or zones help insurance companies determine requirements for homeowners, ensuring that they are covered for likely scenarios.

2. Zones Where Flood Insurance Is Optional

In a moderate to low-risk flood zone, flood insurance is optional. These areas are typically marked on the FIRM map as zones B and X (shaded) and C and X (unshaded). These areas receive these designations after land surveys and studies have shown these areas to have adequate drainage or minimal severe weather patterns.

3. Zones Where Flood Insurance Is Required

Flood insurance is required in areas that are deemed high-risk, meaning that there is at least a 26% chance of floods over the life of a mortgage. These high-risk areas come with two designations: (1) high risk, or zones A, AE, A1–30, AH, AO, AR, A99, and (2) high-risk coastal areas, or zones V, VE, V1–30.

4. The Fluidity of Special Flood Hazard Areas

Another designation, the Special Flood Hazard Area (SFHA), is fluid, meaning that, while your house may currently be in an area where flood insurance is optional, due to changing weather patterns or tides you may be required to purchase flood insurance later.

If you have more questions about zoning, you can always check the Leawood, KS, area for flood and storm damage specialists, reach out to any local insurance agent or check with FEMA to help clarify flooding requirements and your flood zone concerns. For more information, visit http://www.SERVPRObluevalley.com/.

4 Ways To Remove Mold From Your Shower

9/9/2018 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation 4 Ways To Remove Mold From Your Shower Stopping shower mold prevents it from turning from a localized problem into a household one.

When you go to shower, you could potentially be surprised by the sight of black mold growing in your Leawood, KS, home. A bathroom is a warm and moist environment that mold desires, but the mold doesn’t have to permanently reside there. With these four different methods, you can remove shower mold and stop it from becoming more of a hassle.

1. Soap and Baking Soda

Before getting more potent chemicals involved, the mold should be tackled with a solution of dish soap, baking soda and hot water. This solution should be scrubbed and washed off in moldy areas to remove the surface infestation without risk of discoloration or damage to what’s underneath.

2. Bleach

As its popularity and usage implies, bleach is a good first line of offense against shower mold. Bleach should be diluted in a 1:2 solution with water and applied in multiple cycles of scrubbing and rinsing. Bleach is very effective at removing mold from glass, bathroom counters and tiles.

3. Hydrogen Peroxide Solution

Unlike bleach, hydrogen peroxide can remove mold from porous surfaces such as wood. As an affordable household item, hydrogen peroxide is often easily obtainable in its recommended 3% solution form.

Hydrogen peroxide should first be sprayed on a small spot to ensure it won’t damage the surface. Once you have confirmed that damage will not occur, the entire moldy area should be coated and left to stand for at least half an hour before wiping it off. It may be worth multiple treatments following the same procedure to remove residual mold.

4. Professional Assistance

These home remedies treat the surface, but mold spreads and hides in places you may not know. A professional residential mold specialty crew can locate hidden mold with special tools and remove extraneous moisture that keep it alive.

Stopping shower mold prevents it from turning from a localized problem into a household one. With the right method of treatment, you can keep your home clean and mold free. For more information, visit http://www.SERVPRObluevalley.com/.

How to Properly Use a Fire Extinguisher

8/27/2018 (Permalink)

Worrying about a potential fire can keep business owners in Leawood, KS awake at night. However, ensuring you have the correct type of fire extinguisher on hand, as well as knowledgeable staff trained in its proper usage, can alleviate some of your concerns.
Understanding the Classifications
Not all extinguishers are designed to fight every kind of fire. Understanding the distinctions is crucial to being able to stop fires and minimize damage. The following list explains which extinguisher is best suited to combat fires involving various flammable materials:
• Class A: Ordinary combustibles like wood, paper and cloth
• Class B: Flammable liquids such as grease and gasoline
• Class C: Electrical devices such as wiring, fuse boxes and computers
• Class D: Combustible metals including magnesium and titanium
• Class K: Cooking fluids fueling a kitchen fire
You may also purchase a multiple-purpose extinguisher, which covers Classes A, B and C.
The P-A-S-S Technique
To successfully use a fire extinguisher, you should follow the P-A-S-S protocol.
1. Pull the pin
2. Aim the nozzle at the base of the fire
3. Squeeze the handle
4. Sweep the nozzle from side to side
General Safety Considerations
Before engaging with a fire, you should take the following safety precautions:
• Identify the nearest escape route
• Ensure that the fire does not come between you and your escape path
• Know the effective range of your extinguisher and stay within that distance
As you work toward extinguishing the fire, remember the following:
• Back away from the fire once it is smothered, in case it suddenly flares up again.
• Evacuate immediately if you empty the extinguisher before successfully eliminating the fire.
• Evacuate if the fire expands or crosses your path.
An Effective Tool
A fire extinguisher is an effective fire-fighting tool that every business should have on hand. However, battling a fire can be extremely dangerous. Because maintaining your entire staff’s safety should be a top priority, sometimes leaving the extinguishing duties to trained firefighters is the best course of action. Once the fire is conquered, you can also seek assistance from local cleanup and restoration professionals to manage your fire damage repair needs. Visit http://www.SERVPRObluevalley.com for more information on fire.

Commercial Storm Damage Also Includes Freezing Winter Storms

8/20/2018 (Permalink)

Commercial Commercial Storm Damage Also Includes Freezing Winter Storms Freezing Winter Storm

Storm damage is often associated with storms of rain or wind. However, winter storms in Leawood, KS pose their own unique threats. A frozen pipe can easily turn into a burst pipe. Keeping prepared by knowing how to address this danger can save your business from unnecessary damage.

Understand the Causes of Freezing Pipes

To properly keep an eye out for a frozen pipe, you must understand which pipes are most susceptible to freezing. There are several causes for freezing pipes at a business:

• Sprinkler lines that are not properly monitored or maintained
• Improperly insulated or sealed attic, partitions, walls, chases, doors or windows
• Exterior pipes with inadequate insulation
• Heating systems that do not circulate air properly

Keep Pipes Unfrozen

Before winter, it is recommended to have every external sprinkler drained. Instructions for doing this can be found in the system’s instruction manual, or the process can be contracted out to a service.

Water pipes need proper insulation to keep heat inside. All pipes indoors can be sleeved or have the area around them restructured for insulation. Outdoor pipes should be relocated if they cannot be securely kept warm with insulation’s help.

During winter, the building’s temperature should be kept the same throughout the day, even if no one is present. A burst pipe is much more expensive than running the building’s heating.

Thaw Pipes If They’re Frozen

If water flow seems extremely slow during cold weather, the pipe is likely frozen. You can unthaw a pipe by running the faucet while using a hair dryer, heated towel or space heater on the affected pipe. Once water flows well, the pipe is safe. If there is difficulty locating or thawing the pipe, a plumber can help.

Fix Water Damage As Soon As Possible

Whether it’s standing water from thawing runoff or a burst pipe, water damage cleanup experts can help remove the frigid water and stop its damage. Winter storms don’t have to mean a burst pipe, and preventative measures from understanding winter’s hazards keeps your business away from that problem. Visit http://www.SERVPRObluevalley.com for more information on commercial storm damage. 

What Does Secondary Damage Mean?

8/15/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage What Does Secondary Damage Mean? An example of secondary damage in a residential property.

When you have a flooding problem in your Leawood, KS home, you may hear the professionals throw around a lot of technical terms. You could hear the residential cleanup crew talk about a wide variety of topics, including the following:

• Black mold
• Dirty water
• Negative air chambers
• Secondary damage

With so much technical speak going around, it's easy to get nervous about your water cleanup. Thankfully, understanding the technical terms is as easy as asking your restoration professionals for some clarification.

When it comes to water damage, the destruction can be broken into two categories. To understand what the secondary category is, you need to look at both forms of problems.

Primary Damage

When you think of flooding, you likely think of the primary damage first. If a burst pipe caused water to leak down your walls and pool in your living room, these sources of destruction are considered primary. The damage happened right when the water flooded your space. Any belongings or building materials directly affected by water are said to have been in the primary round of damage.

Secondary Issues

Secondary issues take place after the initial spurt of water is over. Perhaps you were able to turn off the water to your home, but that doesn't necessarily stop the damage. Black mold and high humidity could be sources of secondary problems, for example. The mold starts to grow if the water isn't taken care of promptly. This non-primary damage often occurs for three distinct reasons. First, slow reaction times may cause mold growth. Second, hidden leaks could cause the buildup of damage. Third, improper cleanup techniques could leave your home with high humidity even after the water is gone.

As a homeowner, you may feel baffled by a residential flood. Acting quickly can help you stop any secondary forms of damage from taking place in your home. If you take too long to address the water problem, you may end up with black mold growth, destroyed furnishings and humidity problems. Visit http://www.SERVPRObluevalley.com for more information on water damage. 

What Not To Do If You Have Mold

7/30/2018 (Permalink)

Mold is microscopic at first but will soon build little colonies if they are left to grow after a water damage. Here is a list of things to do if you happen to see mold in your home.

What not to do if you see mold:

  • Do not place air movement - The area will be wet but drying it out with a fan will only spread the mold spores.
  • Do not scrape it off - Mold has a root system that is invisible. Without the visible mold present we won't be able to assure that it is gone for good.
  • Do not try to remediate yourself - Personal Protective Equipment is used to keep employees safe from mold spores and mycotoxins.

If you see mold the best recourse is to call SERVPRO of Blue Valley.

Are you a smoker? Read this article about smoking safety.

7/30/2018 (Permalink)

Smoking is one of the top reasons for fires in the Blue Valley area.

While the number of fires caused by smoking is trending downward, the NFPA found that there were still an average of 17,600 related fires per year resulting in 490 deaths and more than $516 million in property damage.

Safety tips:

If you smoke, consider smoking outside.

Use wide, sturdy ashtrays to catch butts and ashes.

Look for cigarette butts under furniture and between seat cushions to make sure no lit butts have fallen someplace where they can’t be seen.

Don’t smoke in bed, when you’re tired or around medical oxygen.

SERVPRO of Blue Valley specializes in fire and water damage restoration. We have the specific damage restoration training, personnel, and equipment and can quickly restore your home to pre-fire condition.

Have Questions? Call Us Today – (913) 825-2000

Electrical and Lighting Fires

7/30/2018 (Permalink)

Electrical & Lighting are common fires that SERVPRO of Blue Valley will be called to clean.

According to the NFPA, in 2011 approximately 47,700 home structure fires were caused by some sort of electrical failure or malfunction. These resulted in 418 deaths, 1,570 injuries and $1.4 billion in property damage.

Safety tips for Electrical and Lighting Fires

  1. Don’t overload outlets or electrical cords. These will melt and start a fire
  2. Make sure you have the right cord for the job – inside cords for inside, heavy duty/outside cords for outdoor use.
  3. Don’t leave Christmas lights, Christmas trees, or halogen lights on overnight or when not at home.
  4. Consider having an electrician perform an annual checkup of your home’s wiring.

Have Questions? Call Us Today – (913) 825-2000