Recent Storm Damage Posts
Storm Damage Versus Water Damage Cleanup: What's the Difference?
When dealing with Category One damage, the best approach is to quickly eliminate water and moisture that may lead to mold.
Storms, flooding, and leaks can all damage your home. While water is the source of the damage in all of these situations, the major difference is the category of water involved. Find out about the three categories of water damage and how cleanup varies between storm damage, flood damage, and leaks.
• Category One water is clean and treated. A burst supply pipe is the most common source of a Category One leak.
• Category Two water is also known as gray water. This water may contain bacteria or chemicals but not sewage or solid waste.
• Category Three water is sometimes referred to as black water. Blackwater is the most common type involved in flooding and is highly contaminated.
The cleanup procedures necessary for these categories of water damage vary.
Category One Cleanup
The water involved in a category one leak is clean and treated. As bacteria is not a concern, the only cleanup procedures necessary involve eliminating any standing water and thoroughly drying the affected area. You may still want to rely on fans and dehumidifiers to dry the area more quickly and prevent mold from forming.
Category Two Cleanup
Category Two cleanup should involve cleaning and disinfection as well as thorough drying. This type of backup or leak is not as severe as damage from a flood or sewer backup.
Category Three Cleanup
Floods and severe sewage backups involve black water containing solid waste. Cleaning and disinfection are necessary to limit infection risks, and the area must be completely dried to prevent mold.
When dealing with Category One damage, the best approach is to quickly eliminate water and moisture that may lead to mold. Most flooding and storm damage cleanup involves black water and requires cleaning and disinfection in addition to drying. Resolve any situation as soon as possible by contacting a flood damage restoration company in Bonita Springs, FL.
3 Machines That Remove Flood Water From Your Commercial Building’s Garage
Commercial garage flooded
3 Flood Water Removal Machines for Your Commercial Building's Garage
Flooding in Estero, FL, can affect almost every area of your commercial building. One of the most vulnerable areas is your structure’s garage, whether you use it for employee parking or to house your businesses’ vehicles. When a flood pushes several feet of water into your commercial garage, there are three types of equipment that a professional storm cleanup and restoration service may use to remove it.
1. Pump Truck
A storm cleanup company may bring in a pump truck to remove flood water from your garage because of the possible contaminants it can contain. Most water that spills over from rivers, streams and other local bodies of water to create flooding is known as black water, as it usually contains human and animal waste. A pump truck removes the water with large industrial hoses and deposits it into a large truck tank, where it can be delivered to a safe disposal area.
2. Sump Pumps
You may see your cleanup service use equipment called submersible sump pumps to remove floodwater. An industrial sump pump like this can pull large amounts of standing water from an area into a tank or other container. Portable sump pumps can be useful in this situation for the mitigation of floodwater, as they can be moved and placed where necessary to remove water from areas that are especially vulnerable.
3. Trash Pumps
A trash pump can be especially effective in cleaning up floodwaters from your commercial garage because it is designed to pick up solids or thick, sludgy silt that may be mixed with the water. It can also handle the debris that may have come in during the flood, such as leaves and other plant material. Trash pumps may be more effective than sump pumps when the water contains a great deal of waste.
When flooding impacts your Estero, FL, commercial garage, it can be difficult to remove standing water on your own. However, professional cleanup and restoration services have a variety of equipment that can remove floodwaters with a minimum of hassle.
Flood Safety Tips Every Homeowner Should Know
Storm ceiling damage
Every Homeowner Should Know These Flood Safety Tips
You read and hear about disasters on the news, but you may never think they’ll happen to you. However, disastrous incidents such as flooding can occur anywhere in Bonita Springs, FL, and beyond. Though it’s impossible in all circumstances to control when a flood will affect you, there are ways you can prepare for flood safety. If you practice a few simple tips, you could save yourself a significant of time, money and grief.
Before a Flood
Flooding can be an issue due to several factors, including intense weather, poor plumbing, sewage backup and others. No matter what you do, you can’t keep the weather away, but you can do some things to minimize damage.
- Clean your rain gutters
- Seal basement vents
- Examine windows and make sure they don’t have gaps
- Have a trained professional examine your plumbing and sewage systems
- Secure valuables in waterproof containers or safe deposit boxes
During a Flood
If water starts making its way into your home, it’s essential that you avoid contact with it. Of all the safety tips, one of the most critical is that you stay away from black water, which contains sewage and other potentially fatal materials. You should also turn off your home’s power and water mains. Also, never use an appliance that has come into contact with floodwater. It’s important to pay attention to instructions from local authorities on how to safely react to flooding.
After a Flood
Flood safety is just as important following the incident as it is during. Once the water is under control, you need to clear it out as soon as possible. You should do this with a wet vacuum. Make sure you dry the area and sanitize thoroughly as well. A restoration specialist will determine whether you need to replace the flooring, walls, or other areas.
If you practice good flood safety, you can avoid damage to your home and injury to yourself and your loved ones. Keep these guidelines handy and implement them today.
3 Aspects of Commercial Storm Insurance To Understand as a Business Owner
Get the necessary storm insurance policy for your business.
Commercial Storm Insurance
In the event that the Bonita Springs, FL, building in which you run your business experiences a storm, you'll want to take swift and decisive action. In order to get the storm damage restoration process underway, one of the first things you'll need to do is work with your insurance agency. Unfortunately, commercial insurance for storms can be difficult to navigate. If you'd like to know more, here are three aspects of commercial storm insurance to understand as a business owner.
1. Storm Riders
Regrettably, commercial property insurance policies often don't include coverage for storms. This is especially common when it comes to flood damage. However, you may be able to get coverage for wind-related problems. Generally, these are the damage causes that commercial property insurance will cover:
If your policy doesn't cover storm damages, you may want to expand your insurance coverage through riders. Riders provide extra coverage for specific events, such as hurricanes. This is an especially good idea if you work in a storm-prone area.
2. Business Interruption
Since storms can be highly destructive, you may find yourself unable to use your building or supplies. If this occurs, you might be worried about experiencing further financial loss. This is why adding a business interruption rider to your insurance can be useful. Doing so could help you pay expenses while being unable to work.
Ever since Katrina and other massive hurricanes occurred, the method of paying deductibles has changed for most states. Instead of setting a standard rate for deductibles, most storm insurance providers use percentages. This means that properties ensured for more will have higher deductibles. In order to avoid getting caught off-guard when dealing with insurance, be sure to calculate how much your deductible would be.
In order to avoid experiencing massive losses after a storm, it's vital to prepare. Do your research and get the necessary storm insurance policy for your business.
3 Things You Must Do When Fixing a Leaky Roof
Man fixing a leaky roof in Coconut, FL
Three Steps That Should Happen
You look up and there is a wet ring on the ceiling. Great, there is a roof leak. Who knows how long it's been there with water festering and allowing mold to breed. This isn't good news. As a business owner in Coconut, FL, you know that fixing your property correctly is the best way to avoid catastrophic damage; therefore, it's important to act swiftly, looking over the situation and creating a plan. During this time, remember there are three steps that should happen.
1. Evaluate the Water Damage
The holes or missing shingles need mending; however, before any of that happens, a water remediation company needs to investigate how much moisture infiltrated the building. If allowed to sit stagnantly, this accumulation can continue to rot material, permitting microbes to grow. Therefore, have tests performed to determine the extent of water absorption. Then, cover the impacted area so more does not get through. Inside, rearrange fixtures and merchandise, so they are out of that zone, protecting them from potential issues down the road.
2. Tear Out and Dry the Impacted Structure
Knowing the trouble, the specialists begin to remove anything the roof leak saturated. Leaving it behind could become a potential hazard as items have integrity and are filled with fungal and bacterial spores. With all of this gone, the rest of the area undergoes drying procedures. Dehumidifiers can pull out humidity, and they can be placed near crawl spaces.
3. Restore and Rebuild the Section
Once all contamination is dealt with, the damaged roof needs correcting. The crew can put on new shingles as well as replace the internal substances. This includes patching and painting what was ruined.
Be cautious when you spot a roof leak. It's not something to dismiss quickly. In fact, allowed to linger, this situation can become a very messy, expensive problem. Have the rooftop thoroughly examined, being careful to search for excessive fluid development.
Preparing Your Business for a Flood
Sandbags can help prevent water to get into your building.
Steps To Take To Prepare A Business Flood
Preparing your business for a flood is more than just preparing a sandbag barrier and hoping for the best. It takes some time and planning, but there are a few simple steps.
Create a Plan
When it floods, you need a plan. This includes:
- Getting insurance
- Training your employees
- Checking your business flood zone
- Noting areas that may need flood dams
- Duplicating critical information and storing it at another location
Make sure you write down your plan and keep it in an area where you and your employees can find it in the event of a flood. You should also keep the number of a flood remediation company handy just in case.
Check Your Cities Flood Plan
You should know what Estero, FL, does in the event of a flood. Some cities offer flood supplies when a storm is imminent, while others have pumps that are turned on when floodwaters threaten businesses. Other cities open areas where sandbag devices or other flood barriers can be purchased and filled.
Do not wait until the last minute to purchase supplies like barriers, heavy tape, tarps, boards and barriers. There are usually shortages of these items right before a flood. If you keep these items in storage, check them before storm season to ensure they are still in working order. These items can easily prevent flood damage to your business, and it is better to have them just in case.
Outline What Happens After a Flood
Having an outline for what happens after a flood is just as important as planning for the flood itself. You should know what you need to do, who you need to call and what precautions you need to take. Just having this can help you remain calm and reduce the stress of dealing with water damage.
Preparing for a flood is more than just throwing a sandbag or barrier device down. Having a clear idea of what you need to do before and after can help you keep your business safe from flooding.
What To Do If You Do Not Have Flood Insurance
FEMA offers several kinds of grants
Water can quickly enter your Estero, FL, house during a major storm. Even if you do have homeowners' insurance, your policy likely does not include flood coverage. Luckily, those without flood insurance can still apply for a grant from the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
Types of Grants
FEMA offers several kinds of grants. They can assist with:
- Home repairs
- Personal property losses
- Funeral, dental or medical costs
- Vehicle repair or replacement
- Temporary housing
The home repair grant should help you pay for initial emergency restoration services that make your house safe, secure, habitable, and sanitary. However, the government will not cover the costs of returning your home to its pre-flood condition.
You will not have to repay the grant money that you spend. However, you must keep your receipts to prove that the money was used to repair your home. Any money that was not spent was spent on alternative purposes or cannot be documented via receipts will have to be returned to the government.
Anyone who lives in a county that has been designated a disaster area is eligible for a grant. Even if you have flood insurance, you can use the grant for excess expenses that insurance does not cover.
Renters and college students qualify for grants, as well. Applicants do not need to be under a certain income threshold, either. However, you or a member of your household must be a citizen, non-citizen national, or qualified alien.
If you believe you are eligible for a grant, you can apply at www.DisasterAssistance.gov or call 800-462-7585. FEMA will then send a letter notifying you of its decision. Those who were denied eligibility can file an appeal in writing within 60 days of receiving the letter.
Depending on the flood plane of your local stream, even a relatively minor storm can cause large consequences for your property. That is why the government offers assistance to those without flood insurance.
Rising Flood Water: 3 Things You Need To Know
Water from overflowing lakes or rivers, also known as rising water, is always classified as black water
Here’s What You Need To Know About This Kind Of Floodwater
All flooding is bad news, especially when it’s in your Estero, FL, business, but all flooding is not created equal. Water that enters your building from outside is within the most dangerous category of water: category three or black water.
1. It’s Dangerous
Water from overflowing lakes or rivers, also known as rising water, is always classified as black water. In addition to the bacteria and other organic material present in the original water source, rising water may have also been contaminated by ground debris, animal feces, overflowing septic systems, fertilizers, chemicals, heavy metals, pesticides, raw sewage, or other hazardous matter. It poses a serious health hazard to humans and animals.
2. It Requires Professional Cleanup
If rising water enters your building, call a professional flood remediation company as soon as possible. Never attempt to clean up this type of flooding yourself. Inadequate decontamination measures could have disastrous consequences for the health of the building’s inhabitants and for the structural soundness of the building itself. Restoration professionals have the proper training and equipment to clean up category three flood water correctly.
3. It Can Cause Irreparable Damage
Bacteria and mold begin to multiply quickly and can spread rapidly throughout your building. Professional cleanup crews will need to remove and dispose of all carpet, carpet pads, and other porous flooring materials, as well as all affected drywall and any textiles such as curtains. After everything is removed, the building will need to be treated with chemical biocides to kill any remaining bacteria and prevent future mold growth. Repair work can’t begin until the property has been sufficiently decontaminated.
If rising water or storm damage causes your building to flood, don’t waste time or endanger yourself. Evacuate all people and animals, if needed. Avoid unnecessary contact with the flood water and call a restoration company immediately.
How First Responders Can Protect Themselves During Floods
Be prepared by always carrying protective goggles
How To Safely Perform Your Duties During A Flood
If you are a first responder, it is critical that you be aware of how to safely perform your duties during a flood. As one of the individuals responsible for helping out during times of distress, it remains incumbent upon you to respond to a storm emergency without sustaining illness or injury.
What To Wear
Should your services as part of a flood response team become necessary, be prepared by always carrying:
- Protective goggles
- Chemical-resistant boots
- Plastic or rubber gloves
These items are necessary as floodwaters commonly suffer contamination from hazardous waste and threatening vermin. As a conscientious and levelheaded first responder, it is recommended that you have worn equipment laundered prior to returning home. Always shower before calling it quits just to be certain you do not drag any toxic chemicals along with you into your house.
How To Remain Safe
Because flooding often carries with it diseases such as tetanus and hepatitis A, receive immunizations before the need to wade into uncertain waters arises.
If your mission requires entering a submerged home, keep in mind that harmful fungus begins accumulating within a short period of time. Whenever possible, move everyone away from the compromised zone to minimize exposure. Once the emergency has passed, remind all parties to have a mold removal service perform an inspection, as well as any subsequent necessary renovations.
When using a portable generator, keep it dry and closely follow the instructions. Beware that running one in a poorly ventilated area carries with it the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning, so exercise caution.
Various terrains can become saturated during floods, causing sinkholes and other forms of ground instability. Therefore, look twice before stepping anywhere uncertain. You cannot help anyone if you need rescuing yourself.
As a first responder, your primary objective is to help families and then return to yours in Bonita Springs, FL, unharmed. Know how to handle whatever challenges a flood sends your way before attempting to rescue others.
Can I Avoid Flood Cuts in My Flooded Property?
Flood cut performed in this Bonita Springs, FL property
If flooding has affected your Bonita Springs, FL, building, it may have sustained some unexpected damage. Even though you can't see it right away, moisture that remains for more than a day or two can cause hidden contamination, such as mold and mildew. One of the steps that a flood remediation company takes to prevent this is a flood cut.
When Is a Flood Cut Necessary?
When technicians make a flood cut, they cut out the drywall about a foot to a foot and a half above the water damage. These cuts aren't always necessary, and professionals will do what they can to leave your property as intact as possible. However, one of the primary goals of these technicians is to prevent secondary damage. If any of the following are true, technicians will make the cut:
- There's insulation inside the walls.
- Flooding consists of or has been exposed to sewage.
- Floodwaters carry contaminants such as bacteria and pathogens.
- Water has been in place for too long and is now contaminated.
When first confronted with the need to tear out some of the drywall, you may be opposed to the idea. However, it's much less expensive and problematic to remove drywall now and make appropriate repairs than to find extensive mold growth later on.
What Happens After a Flood Cut?
Remember the flood cut isn't always necessary. Technicians will work to save the wall as long as the water is clean. If contamination is an issue, the cut is made to allow technicians access inside the wall. Any moisture and contamination concerns can be addressed to prevent mold growth, weakened structural elements, and problematic insulation.
When Should I Contact Cleanup Professionals?
Whether your building has been affected by a little bit of moisture or a lot of flooding, water damage professionals need to act quickly. These technicians will assess the structural integrity of your property and complete any necessary corrective actions.
5 Post Flood Tips for Your Home
Anytime you deal with flooding it’s important to wear safety gear
What Not To Do If You've Experienced Storm Flooding
After a storm has left floodwater in your Bonita Springs, FL, home there are a number of things to know. Here are five tips for what not to do if you’ve experienced storm flooding.
1. Don’t Leave the Electricity On
If you have a flooded home after a storm or even just a single area of flooding it’s important to turn off any electricity to the space. A professional can then safely make an assessment of the damage.
2. Don't Forget to Contact a Professional
Anytime you deal with flooding it's important to contact a local restoration service. These professionals will have the tools needed to clean up the water, and the training needed to make sure all the damage is found and repaired.
3. Don’t Leave Standing Water
Letting the flood water have time to seep into the flooring and walls can lead to long term water damage. This is why it's important to remove the water as quickly as possible. Your local restoration team may even have a pump handy to help with the job.
4. Don’t Forget Safety Gear
Anytime you deal with flooding it’s important to wear safety gear such as masks, gloves, clothing covers, and even protective shoe coverings.
5. Don’t Leave the Area To Dry on Its Own
Drying the space is just as important as removing the water. In many cases, your restoration service will have a dehumidifier to help pull the moisture out of the air, which can help the room dry faster.
After a storm leaves floodwater in your home it’s important to remember these five things. Turn off the electricity to the affected area. Call a professional for restoration help. Get rid of the water quickly. Wear appropriate safety gear, and make sure the area is thoroughly dried before you begin repairs. With the restoration team there to help your home can soon look “Like it never even happened.”
3 Things To Know About Mitigating Roof Damage
Protect your roof before a storm arrives in Estero, FL
Take Mitigations Steps Beforehand
When you hear about a storm approaching your Estero, FL, home, you may be wondering how you can prevent roof damage. There are a few things you can do to achieve this. Here are three of the most common.
1. Inspect the Roof Regularly
It’s a good idea to inspect your roof regularly to ensure that any needed repairs can be done well before you face storm weather. Look for areas of wind damage, loose shingles, cracks, loose gutters, or other things that could cause potential problems during a storm. If you don’t have time to fix these things before the storm arrives, it’s recommended to cover over the space to protect it.
2. Protect Damaged Areas
If you have existing roof damage or other areas of concern it’s best to protect this places before the storm arrives. You can do so by securing tarps or boards over the spot to add an extra layer between the roof and any inclement weather.
3. Make Repairs Quickly
It’s in your best interest to make any needed repairs as quickly as possible, as doing so can help mitigate the likelihood of further damage leading to large scale roof repair needs. In many cases, a local storm damage restoration service can help with these repairs. Restoration professionals are trained to spot the different types of damage that may have occurred and follow the appropriate repair steps, meaning soon your roof can look “Like it never even happened.”
Taking mitigation steps beforehand can help you prevent roof damage to your home. Consider inspecting the roof regularly so that you can catch any repair needs before large sale problems arise. Protect any damaged area you do find to prevent further problems, and contact a restoration service as soon as you can to make repairs quickly. These things can help keep your roof in top shape and protect it in the event a storm should occur.
The Pros and Cons of Storm Shutters
Storm shutters in Estero, FL
Storms and high winds can do a number on your house, so any advantage you can find is worth considering. Storm glass, solid siding and a roof in good condition all protect your home from the awesome power of Mother Nature. But what about shutters? How effective are they as a deterrent to strong winds? Sure, they look nice, but do they really provide good value when a strong storm blows into Estero, FL? Complicating matters is the large variety of window protection products on the market, and each one comes with its own set of costs, strength, quality, appearance, ease of installation and longevity concerns.
The Advantages of Storm Shutters
Protection against storms isn't cheap, and fortification for outside windows is no exception. Aside from the cost, however, window coverings have a number of benefits:
- They provide protection for expensive windows.
- They may reduce home insurance premiums.
- They offer an extra level of safety from flying glass.
- They protect the interior of a home.
Various materials are used in the manufacture of products to protect the home during tornadoes, hurricanes and high winds. These may include wood, polycarbonate, steel and aluminum, to name a few. Storm shutters can be mounted onto a house permanently, or they can quickly be put up when a storm threatens.
The Benefits of Proactive Preparation
Whether you decide to invest in strong windows or some form of exterior window covering, preparing for a storm can save a lot of trouble and expense. When you partner with a storm recovery team in Estero, FL, you know someone will be there quickly to help out with water damage. The motto Faster to any size disaster assures rapid action that is valuable after a storm. Fast water removal results in less damage to a home and allows you to resume your life again more quickly, even after high winds have paid a visit.
Commercial Roof Maintenance Tips
Roof inspection in Bonita Springs, FL
Tips for Keeping Your Roof In Top Condition
If you have a business in Bonita Springs, FL, you probably have many maintenance skills under your belt already. One area that may be out of sight and thus out of mind, however, is your building's roof. Like any part of your business, keeping your roof system well-maintained makes everything work more smoothly. The last thing you want is to find one morning is a roof leak. Here are some helpful tips for keeping your roof in top condition.
1. Check for leaks. Leaks can originate from storm damage or simply from wear and tear. If you find puddles or water stains inside your building, it could be a sign of storm damage that needs to be addressed. Contain the leak if you find one, and contact experts in storm cleanup and water damage remediation.
2. Check the flashing. Roof flashing is found where the roof cover meets the wall and where roof features are installed. The material prevents water from entering the building at joints and seams. If it comes loose due to wind damage, however, water can seep inside, so check it regularly.
3. Check roof covers. If your flashing is loose, then your roof cover is at a higher risk of malfunction. Roof covers should be regularly inspected for rips and bubbles. Bubbles under your roof cover may mean there is moisture trapped underneath it, which can lead to a roof leak.
4. Check the gutters and drains. Gutters, downspouts, and drain systems all work together to keep your space dry. Regularly inspect them and clear them of clogs such as leaves, twigs, and other debris.
5. Check skylights and hatches. Roofs often feature items such as skylights, satellites, hatches, and air conditioners. All of these features should be inspected for security. If they come loose, the risk of water damage increases.
Some inspections and repairs are so simple you can do them with your eyes closed, but remember to check the areas you don't always see. Keep your business safe and dry with regular maintenance so you don't develop a risky roof leak.
How To Keep Pipes From Freezing
Insulation can be a great way to keep exposed pipes from freezing
Your commercial property in Estero, FL, can become vulnerable to a lot of outside forces. This is particularly true during the storm season. Many property owners know how to prevent storm damage from external flooding, but it is equally important to know how to prevent damage from internal issues such as a burst pipe. Here are a few ways to keep such flooding at bay.
Identify Vulnerable Spots
Take the time to know the layout of the plumbing system in your building. There are several areas where a frozen pipe is more likely to occur:
- Near an external wall
- In a section with little insulation
- Under sinks enclosed in cabinets
Mark the areas where pipes need a little more protection. Then you can decide what steps to take next.
Add Extra Warmth
Most of the time, you can avoid a burst pipe just by adding extra layers of protection to keep it warm. Start by placing more insulation in your walls. You can even add it directly to the pipes themselves. Another way to keep pipes from freezing is to keep the thermostat set no lower than 55 degrees even when no one is in the building. The minor increase this causes in your electric bill is small compared to the potential cost of flood cleanup.
Call Professionals Quickly
If you do find standing water in your building after a hard freeze, you can significantly minimize damage by calling specialists to handle the problem as soon as possible. You will need to call a plumber to repair the pipe and flood restoration experts to renovate the water damage. Once they arrive at your building, they can assess the problem quickly and propose the solutions needed to get your property back in order.
The best way to handle storm damage from a burst pipe is to keep the harm from happening in the first place. If you do need flood cleanup, however, it’s better to arrange it sooner rather than later.