Protecting Your Property
You can be ready or you can be ruined. Choose to be prepared this winter.
Cold weather can wreak havoc and cause costly damage to your home or business if you are not properly prepared. Whether it is heavy rain, freezing temperatures, damaging winds, sleet or snow, all can cause serious property damage. While you can’t control the weather, you can be prepared, and help take the sting out of winter weather. To help prevent weather related damages, consider taking the following precautions before winter weather hits.
Check your business property for downed tree limbs and branches. Weather, such as wind, heavy rain, ice and snow, can cause branches to fall, which could cause damage to the property and potentially cause personal injuries.
Roofs, water pipes and gutters should all be inspected to ensure they are in proper order. Gutter downspouts should be directed away from your building. Clear gutters of debris that may have gathered during the fall. Leaves and other obstructions can lead to a damming effect, causing roof damage and interior water problems.
Clean chimneys and exhaust systems to ensure they are free of debris.
Test gas lines if they have been dormant to ensure they are in good working order with no leaks.
Inspect your property, especially walkways and parking lots, for proper drainage to alleviate flood hazard potential.
Protect pipes from freezing by allowing water to drip when temperatures dipped below freezing. If pipes are under a cabinet, leave the cabinet doors open allowing warm inside air to circulate around the pipes. Make sure all exterior pipes are properly insulated.
If the building has outdoor faucets consider shutting water off at the main valve in the basement or crawl space. Once the valve is off, open the outdoor faucet to ensure it drains, preventing any remaining water from freezing in the pipe.
Make sure all exterior doors, garages, roll ups and windows have sufficient weather stripping.
Ask SERVPRO of Vancouver/ Clark County about completing an emergency ready profile ERP for your business. The ERP is a no-cost assessment to your facility, and provide you with a plan to get back in business fast following a disaster.
Items were left unattended on this wood stove causing smoke and soot to cover every surface in this residence.
Each November, families gather to celebrate Thanksgiving by preparing a delicious meal, but if you don’t practice safe cooking habits, your holiday could become hazardous very quickly. According to the national fire protection Association, cooking fires are the number one cause of home fires and home injuries. The leading cause of fires in the kitchen is unattended cooking. It’s important to be alert to prevent cooking fires.
-Be on alert! If you are sleepy or have consumed alcohol don’t use the stove or stove top.
-Stay in the kitchen while you are frying, grilling, boiling, or broiling food.
-If you are simmering, baking, or roasting food, check it regularly, remain in the kitchen while food is cooking, and use a timer to remind you that you are cooking.
-Keep anything that can catch fire (oven mitts, wooden utensils, food packaging, towels, or curtains) away from the stove top.
If you have a cooking fire, consider the following safety protocols to help keep you and your family safe.
-Just get out! When you leave, close the door behind you to help contain the fire.
-Call 9-1-1 or the local emergency number after you leave.
-For an oven fire, turn off the heat and keep the door closed.
-If you try to fight the fire, be sure others are getting out and you have a clear way out.
-Keep a lid nearby when you’re cooking to smother small grease fires. Smother the fire by sliding the lid over the pan and turn off the stove top. Leave the pan covered until it is completely cooled.
SERVPRO Vancouver/ Clark County wish you a safe and happy holiday season!
Is Your Property Winter Ready?
When winter weather strikes call SERVPRO of Vancouver/ Clark County to strike back.
Cold weather can have a huge impact on your home or business if you are not properly prepared. Whether it is heavy rain, freezing temperatures, damaging winds, sleet or snow, all can cause serious and costly property damage. While you cannot control the weather you can take steps to be prepared and help take the sting out of winter weather.
To help prevent costly damages due to weather, consider taking the following precautions to protect your property before colder weather hits.
-Check your business property for downed tree limbs and branches. Weather, such as wind, heavy rain, ice and snow, can cause branches to fall, which could cause damage to the property and potentially cause personal injuries.
-Roofs, water pipes and gutters should all be inspected to ensure they are in proper order. Gutter downspouts should be directed away from your building. Clear gutters of debris that may have gathered during the fall. Leaves and other obstructions can lead to a damning affect, that can lead to a roof damage and interior water problems.
-Inspect property, especially walkways and parking lots, for proper drainage to alleviate flood hazard potential.
-Inspect all handrails, stairwells and entryways to address and correct potential slippery or hazardous areas. Install mats or nonslip surfaces and post caution signs where water could be present.
-Protect water pipes from freezing by simply allowing water to drip when temperatures dip below freezing. If pipes are under a cabinet, leave the cabinet doors open allowing warm inside air to circulate around the pipes. If the building has outdoor faucets, consider shutting water off at the main valve in the basement or crawl space. Once the valve is off open outdoor faucet to ensure it drains, preventing any remaining water from freezing in the pipe.
-Ask SERVPRO of Vancouver/ Clark County about completing an Emergency READY Profile (ERP) for your business. The ERP is a no-cost assessment for your facility, and provides you with a plan to get back in business fast following a disaster.
Your Business: Ready or Ruined?
This facility was affected by both fire and water damage. We called all hands on deck to get this business up and running again in no time.
Technology can now be a vital tool in preparing for emergencies or disasters, as well as during or after to stay informed of the situation and in communication with others. From common technology you already use on a day-to-day basis to taking a few extra steps to prepare, the following will help you be ready in the event of an emergency or disaster. Store Information Online There are many places to store important information securely online. Services like Google Drive and Dropbox offer a free way to store different types of files, from a word document to images of important documents. Ready.gov suggests saving an electronic version of insurance policies, identification documents, medical records, and information on your pets, if necessary. Follow the News Stay informed by following agencies such as FEMA, local news channels, and local government on Twitter for the most up-to-date information in a disaster situation. You can also alert first responders if a rescue as needed through Twitter. Mark Yourself Safe The American Red Cross offers a safe & well check inside to list yourself as safe or find family and friends in situations where communication is difficult to establishFacebook also has a feature called safety check that is activated after natural disasters or a crisis. You will receive a notification from Facebook if you’re located in the affected area at that time. Get in Touch Make sure your contact information is up-to-date in your phone and email for communication with family, friends, business contacts, and others whom you may need to get in contact with before, during, or after a disaster. Charge Up Keep a portable charger in your car and home in case of an emergency. You may need to recharge this from time to time, but you can also buy solar powered chargers as well. Get an Emergency Ready Profile SERVPRO of West Vancouver/Clark County is proud to offer Emergency READY Profiles (ERP) for free at ready.SERVPRO.com to help prepare you, your property, or your business for an emergency.By developing a SERVPRO Emergency READY Profile for your property or business, you minimize business interruption by having an immediate plan of action. Knowing what to do and what to expect in advance is the key to timely medication and can help minimize how water and fire damage can affect your property or business.put help in the palm of your hand with the ReadyPlan app. Get in touch with SERVPRO of West Vancouver/Clark County for more information on developing an ERP for your property or business, and SERVPRO will be there to help make it “Like it never even happened.”
Fast Water Removal Will Save Your Vancouver Home
Vancouver residents know that the greater water threat to their homes is the outdated and rusted plumbing inside. If left untreated, the property can be just as damaged from a failing water heater as a severe storm.
It is common for a flood to start off the communities fall and winter season in the North West. With a town full of daylight basements, second-floor bathrooms prone to overflowing, and leaky roofs, we are here to help with it all.
At a home in Brush Prairie, a leaky roof caused damage, and puddling in the ceiling. The water dripped down into the other stories of the home, causing multi level damage. Our team went through, and did their best to exceed expectations for the family. The home used drywall for the walls and ceilings, so team members replaced half the ceiling and one wall on the second floor. They used fans to dry out the wall frame before hanging the new panels. Other technicians performed the same work in the kitchen, removing half the ceiling and two panels on an interior wall.
At SERVPRO of W. Vancouver/Clark Co, we carefully examine each home to determine which methods and tools can best help us return it to the owner in a dry condition, safe to live in again. If your home here, Ridge Field, Battle Ground, or as far as Fishers Landing needs our services, call us today at (360)254-0049
Weather Safety Tips
Severe weather can happen anytime, anywhere. Each year, per NOAA.gov, Americans cope with an average of the following intense storms:
*10,000 severe thunderstorms
*5,000 floods or flash floods
*2 landfalling deadly hurricanes
Approximately 98% of all Presidentially declared disasters are weather-related, leading to around 650 deaths per year and nearly $15 billion in damage. Knowing your risk of severe weather, taking action, and being an example are just a few steps you can take to be better prepared to save your life and assist in saving the lives of others.
KNOW YOUR RISK: The first step to becoming weather-ready is to understand they type of hazardous weather that can affect where you live and work, and how the weather could impact you, your business, and your family. Check the weather forecast regularly, obtain an NOAA Weather Radio, and learn about Wireless Emergency Alerts. Severe weather comes in many forms, and your shelter plan should include all types of local hazards.
TAKE ACTION: Take the next step in severe weather preparedness by creating a communications plan for your home and business. Put together or purchase an emergency kit. Keep important papers and valuables in a safe place.
BE AN EXAMPLE: Once you have taken action to prepare for severe weather, share your story with co-workers and family and friends on Facebook & Twitter. Your preparedness story will inspire others to do the same.
DIY Sewage Cleanup
The Dangers of DIY Sewage Cleanup
If you’re like most homeowners, when faced with a problem you probably head STRAIGHT to Google!
And if you’re dealing with backed-up sewage, it only takes a few seconds of searching to find out that you probably want to hire someone to do it for you.
Cleaning up raw sewage on your own is something you should never do!
#1 – It can be hidden. – SERVPRO of W. Vancouver/Clark Co crew member can tell you stories about customers that decided to clean-up their own feces only to call in weeks or months later complaining about smells and disfigured walls, cabinets, and floors. Sewage will find its way into any and all porous surfaces.
Even things like drywall and cabinetry aren’t safe. And it’s not as simple as just spotting the sewage with your eyes. It requires state of the art equipment, which SERVPRO of W. Vancouver/Clark Co, to identify areas that have been damaged by sewage. So unless you have an infrared detection system handy and know how to use it, call SERVPRO of W. Vancouver/Clark Co.
#2 – It can be costly. – Times are difficult for everyone and money is tight. It’s easy to justify doing it yourself instead of paying to have SERVPRO of W. Vancouver/Clark Co clean and disinfect for you. But today’s shortcut is tomorrow’s nightmare! Again, you’re dealing with a toxic situation that if not handled properly can create very real health dangers for you and your family.
Not only that, if not properly mitigated, you could be looking at a serious mold issue in the not so distant future on top of all of the other issues described above. And if you think sewage cleanup is costly, wait until you’re stuck with a bill for mold remediation services! At least your sewage clean-up is covered by insurance…that’s not typically the case if you’ve got mold and it’s the result of you not taking appropriate measures when dealing with the sewage issue that created the mold!
So, if you’ve stumbled upon this article due to a sewage back-up that’s spilled into your home or office, do yourself a favor and call us, SERVPRO of W. Vancouver/Clark Co. Our technicians are certified to perform raw sewage cleanup and can provide you with peace of mind knowing the area affected is professionally cleaned.
Have you Checked on your Toilet Lately?
The question we are sure that most of you were hoping to be asked today. But we are here to ask the tough questions. Many times, people do not think of their toilets as a possible liability. Unlike a fine wine, they do not get better as they age. Infact, parts of the plumbing within the fixture can deteriorate as time goes on.
An unchecked toilet can go from, fine, to funky incredibly quickly. An easy example of this, is your toilet overflowing. This can happen from a reservoir issue, or something as simple as a clogged pipe. The tile, or laminate flooring within your bathroom will also be affected, and saturated. Protecting your floor from severe water damage is likely to be tricky if not acted upon almost immediately.
Our SERVPRO of W. Vancouver/Clark Co will arrive guns-ablazing with the best equipment for your severe damages, or smaller damages. We will also set up our advanced drying equipment to protect and preserve exposed cabinetry, fixtures, and flooring. In turn making your bathroom look like no toilet issues ever even happened.
How We Work with Your Insurance Agent:
At SERVPRO of W. Vancouver/Clark Co, we pride ourselves in blending customer service with accountable communication between us, you, and your insurance agent.
SERVPRO of W. Vancouver/Clark Co knows how critical it is that everything goes as smooth as possible. When something traumatic happens, we are here to ensure your clients trust you to take care of them. WE are here to make it like it never even happened.
We are trained and motivated to mitigate the damages as quickly as possible. Whether it’s fire, water, mold or any other cleanup; we are here to help, 24/7.
Within our history of working with insurance agents, we have gained lots of skills and information. We are aware of how crucial it is to provide a timely solution in crisis.
Some insurance agents passively recommend a call center solution. But our team members are ready to help your client right off the bat! Our team personally works with your client, walking them through, one step at a time. Our team is ready to offer a listening ear, and support in any way they can.
We will ensure help arrives quickly,and gets the job done. The faster SERVPRO of W. Vancouver/Clark Co team can arrive onsite to perform the cleanup, the better for you and your client. Find out how we can help you, or your client by reaching out to us directly today! You’ll be speaking directly with one of our amazing team members!
Why Fast Water Extraction is Necessary for Vancouver Homes
We had to remove drywall to extract water from this home's structure. Fortunately the damage was small and the home was restored in no time.
Managing Water Removal on Behalf of Vancouver Residents
Wet rooms can quickly cause problems to your upper floors and lower ceilings. The source of the problem could be a backed or blocked pipe or the deterioration of vital sealing materials. The outcome is nearly always the same, migrated water that takes passage either through electrical outlets like ceiling lights or onto the upper levels, weakening carpets and other areas. When you face this situation, you should first attempt to shut off the water outlet, as well as any electrics. Next, contact both your insurance adjuster and a professional restorer.
Even relatively small quantities of moisture may require professional water removal for your Vancouver home to return to normal. Drying the surface texture alone can often lead to problems further down the line if the partition between your floor and ceiling holds onto moisture. Over time, the prolonged exposure to moisture can cause floorboards to warp, buckle, or cup. Equally, temperature changes can affect indoor humidity levels, and cause condensation on surfaces causing discoloration and yellowing.
SERVPRO technicians are trained to remove and restore parts of your home's water damaged structure safely. These activities may include temporarily removing floorboards or tiles to allow airflow into the cavity. We can speed up drying time by using heated air-circulation, as with an air mover, or by using non-heated circulation by placing box fans. During this procedure, we can also deploy dehumidification equipment to prevent overnight microbial growth issues.
Often structural contents, like hardwood floors, need to be treated separately by a SERVPRO technician. Woods holds a natural moisture content of around 12%, any more than that and the woods could expand, buckling under the pressure of their fittings. We monitor the moisture content using moisture meters and ensure the drying procedure does not reduce moisture content levels too low. Moisture levels too low could result in further damages to your flooring. Once the property is dry, we can begin restoring floorboards by sanding them down and refinishing them to a like-new condition.
Do not let prolonged exposure to moisture ruin your upper floors. Contact SERVPRO of W. Vancouver / Clark Co. at (360) 695-4418.
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