Safeguarding Your Home from the Dangers of Frozen Pipes: A Guide to Water Freeze Damage Mitigation
Winter is a time of year when many homes experience the consequences of frozen pipes and other water damage issues. If not properly addressed, these issues can result in significant damage to your property and potentially costly repairs. However, there are steps you can take to mitigate water damage during a winter freeze in your residential home.
- Insulate pipes: One of the most important steps in preventing frozen pipes is to properly insulate them. Pipes located in unheated areas, such as the attic or garage, are especially susceptible to freezing. Make sure all pipes are properly insulated, including those near exterior walls.
- Keep the temperature consistent: Maintaining a consistent temperature inside your home during the winter months is key in preventing frozen pipes. Keeping your thermostat set to at least 55°F will help prevent pipes from freezing.
- Open cabinets: If your pipes are located in cabinets, such as those under a bathroom or kitchen sink, keep the cabinet doors open to allow warm air to circulate around the pipes.
- Disconnect hoses: Make sure to disconnect all outdoor hoses from outdoor spigots to prevent water from freezing inside the pipes.
- Know where your main water shutoff valve is: In the event of a burst pipe, it is important to know where your main water shutoff valve is located. This will allow you to quickly turn off the water supply to your home and minimize the damage.
- Be aware of signs of frozen pipes: Be on the lookout for signs of frozen pipes, such as a decrease in water pressure or no water coming out of faucets. If you suspect a pipe may be frozen, you can try to thaw it using a hairdryer, taking care not to overheat the pipe.
- Call a professional: If you are unable to thaw a frozen pipe, or if a pipe has already burst, it is important to call a professional to assess and repair the damage. A professional will have the tools and expertise to quickly and effectively repair the damage and minimize any further harm to your home.
Taking these steps can help prevent water damage during a winter freeze in your residential home. However, if you do experience water damage, it is important to act quickly to minimize the damage and ensure the safety of your home and family. Call SERVPRO Team Wilson to assess and repair the damage as soon as possible. In conclusion, water damage during a winter freeze can be a major issue for residential homes. By taking steps to properly insulate pipes, maintain a consistent temperature inside your home, and being aware of the signs of frozen pipes, you can reduce the risk of water damage and minimize any damage that does occur. If you do experience water damage, it is important to call a professional to assess and repair the damage as soon as possible.
Sewage In Your Commercial Business
Sewage is a dangerous substance that just no one should ever handle.Sewage should always be handled by SERVPRO Team Wilson professionals who conduct the sewage cleanup process themselves. Our SERVPRO Team Wilson professionals will know how to address sewage and remove it safely, limiting its potential to cause harm. If you notice sewage backups on your commercial property, call a SERVPRO Team Wilson professional as soon as possible. The sooner you contact a professional, the sooner the problems will be resolved, and your business will return to normal and be safe. Additionally, the backup may leave behind lingering scents. However, it is in your best interests to act right away. Our SERVPRO Team Wilson highly trained technicians can effectively handle the following sewage cleanup tasks:
- Safe removal of biohazards and water with specialty equipment.
- Removal of damaged items
- Discard items that cannot be salvaged.
- Disinfection of salvageable items off-site.
- Drying and dehumidification affected areas.
- Ventilating dangerous fumes and airborne particles.
- Disinfect flooring and surfaces within a contaminated area.
Water Damage and Residential Gutters
Lately, we have seen so much rain in the region which means the gutters on your home could potentially cause water damage! Heavy downpours fall straight into your home’s gutter system, making functional gutters essential to preventing costly water damage. When a home’s gutters are blocked, rainwater is unable to drain. As a result, the excess water travels down the siding and often finds its way inside. As moisture infiltrates the interior, what begins as a steady trickle eventually leads to substantial damage. Over time, water stains on the walls and ceiling are visible. As temperatures warm, the threat of toxic black mold growth is inevitable. The proven method to prevent water damage from gutters is to clean them at least twice annually, in Spring and Autumn. A Spring gutter cleaning removes the accumulated debris from winter and eliminates the threat of blockage. This ensures your gutters are functioning properly and will increase their overall longevity. Here are 5 Tips you can check out to make sure your home gutters are keeping you from having water damage: Regularly Clean Out Your Gutters
Inspect Your Downspouts for Clogs
- Homeowners should regularly clean their gutters every few months to ensure rainwater can flow freely. Effectively cleaning your gutters means getting on a ladder and using a gutter trowel to scoop the leaves and debris out of the gutters. Once all the debris is out, use a hose to flush the gutters and test the water flow. If you do not feel comfortable getting on a ladder to clean your gutters, there are many companies that offer gutter cleaning services.
Perform Needed Maintenance
- In addition to cleaning your gutters, you should inspect your downspouts for clogs. When your downspouts are clogged with leaves, dirt, and other debris, the water has no place to go, which results in water backing up and spilling over the sides during rainstorms. If you can’t see into your downspouts, you can use a garden hose with a pressure nozzle to test the flow and clear out any clogs.
Install Gutter Guards to Protect Your Gutters from Debris
- Regularly walk around your home and visually inspect your gutters. Do you see any signs of rust or corrosion? Are your gutters dropping? Do you see any cracks? If you see small cracks, holes, or gaps, you may be able to seal the leaks with a gutter seal. If the damage appears to be extensive, or if your gutters are falling away from your home, you may have to call a gutter repair company to add gutter brackets and replace severely damaged sections.
Consider Installing Downspout Extensions
- Gutters guards can help minimize the need to clean your gutters. These devices fit over or inside your gutters and are designed to prevent leaves, twigs, and other items from falling into your gutters. With gutter guards installed, all you have to do is brush the leaves and debris off the guards. There is no need to scoop and rinse the inside of the gutter.
- Many downspouts only contain splash blocks, which catch and funnel the water a couple of feet from your home. These devices can be displaced by heavy flows of water, which means if you do not regularly check your splash blocks and reposition them, water could pool around your foundation and/or enter your crawlspace. Instead of using the standard splash block, consider installing downspout extensions. These are flexible tubes that can be attached to your existing downspouts and placed so that the water flows away from your home and its foundation.
Contaminated Water Categories
Flooding can have a devastating impact on your commercial property or residence It can be difficult to predict the full extent of water and storm-related damages. Extracting the water is just the first step that SERVPRO Team Wilson professionals take to thoroughly dry and restore water and storm-damaged areas inside and outside of your property. Floodwater is dangerous, it’s advised to contact a reliable property damage restoration company such as SERVPRO Team Wilson which specializes in natural disaster and flood cleanup and remediation. It can be difficult for the average property owner or management team to determine if the contaminated areas and contents of your property have been properly remediated, to avoid continued damage from mold growth. Our restoration technicians are IICRC trained and certified with countless hours of experience responding to local property damage cleanups and repairs. While assessing your property damage, SERVPRO Team Wilson will help determine what parts of your loss our team can clean, sanitize and restore. Our restoration teams work closely with our construction crews and management to provide a seamless transition from destruction to reconstruction. That's why it's best to call a local property disaster restoration company like SERVPRO Team Wilson to fill in the blanks. Our Professional staff will come and inspect your damage and customize a removal, cleanup, and restoration solution to get your property damage reversed as quickly and effectively as possible.
Different Types of Contaminated Water Categories Category 1: Clean water originates from a sanitary source such as a broken pipe, or another water source; rainwater is also considered clean and poses no substantial risk from dermal, ingestion, or inhalation exposure. However, it may not always remain clean after it meets other surfaces or materials. Category 2: Gray water is used to classify slightly contaminated water and has the potential to cause discomfort or sickness if contacted or consumed by humans. It may contain potentially unsafe levels of microorganisms or nutrients for microorganisms, as well as other organic or inorganic matter (chemical or biological). Category 3: Black water is highly contaminated and filled with pathogenic, toxigenic, or other harmful agents. Such water sources may carry silt, organic matter, pesticides, heavy metals, regulated materials, or toxic organic substances. Black water is typically caused by sewage damage, flooding or any type of natural disaster; black water should always be handled by trained professionals. Different types of contaminated water pose different risks, but the longer the water stays in a home, the more severe the property damage it will cause and the greater the threat to your health. Also called black water, Category 3 water is water from sewage backups and overflowing rivers that contains various hazardous contaminants, sewage, and/or toxic debris. According to the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IIRC) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), all water originating from seawater, ground or surface water, rising rivers and streams, and wind-driven rain from hurricanes and tropical storms is considered Category 3.
How to Keep Rain Water out of your Houston, TX Home
Here are 10 things you should do to keep rainwater out of your Houston, TX home.
If you have water damage concerns due to rainwater please feel free to give SERVPRO of Cypress a call, we're always here to help (281) 469-2957
- Increase Grade: The ground around your home should be sloped away from your property to divert water. It's a very simple process, borrow dirt from three feet away from the structure, and toss it against the side of the structure creating a slope.
- Clean Rain Gutters: You should clean your gutters annually. A clogged gutter can send rainwater running down the exterior wall, which can result in water entering the interior walls.
- Divert Down Spouts: At the local hardware store, you can purchase a black plastic corrugated hose that fits around the base of the downspout. This hose carries water away from the structure, preventing water from seeping into the foundation.
- Roof Maintenance: You should have your roof inspected every 5 years. Your roof is the first line of defense, with one tear in a rubber membrane or cracks in a tin roof, or a compromise in the plywood structure of the roof can be disastrous for the interior of your structure.
- Window Repairs: Proper window installation and maintenance is very important. Modern windows are fitted with well drains to help guide water outside of the house. Improper caulking can be disastrous by sending water into the structure instead of draining it away.
- Sweep Away Debris: During spring and fall especially, you should sweep outdoor surfaces weekly. Sweep patios and door well to prevent debris from clogging exterior drains.
- Expand Exterior Drains: By expanding the surface area of exterior drains decreases the likelihood of clogging the drain.
- Construct a Swale Ditch: Constructing a ditch and filling it with landscaping rock can help divert water away from the structure, especially for yards that are extremely flat.
- Exterior French Drain: For structures on a slope, an exterior French drain, including a subterranean ditch with a black perforated corrugated hose, can be used to divert surface water away from the structure.
- Install a Sump Pump: When all else fails, installing a sump pump may be the solution. You will need to dig a well through the basement or slab of structure. The well may be up to 7 or 10 feet deep. As the water table increases, a sump pump activates and transports water away from the structure.
What Should You Do After A Fire?
The unexpected has just happened and you've experienced a fire in your home! Few things are as devastating to any homeowner as a house fire. We understand there is so much emotion and stress that goes into a situation like this that sometimes you might forget to ask, "What is next?". That is where the team at SERVPRO of Cypress comes in to provide help! If your home catches fire, our team at SERVPRO of Cypress works to aid you in the process of rebuilding. However, a few things you must do after a fire has occurred apply to homeowners anywhere in the Houston area, or anywhere else.
Give Your Insurance Adjuster a CallYou must call your insurance company promptly after. Your agent will help you figure out what happens after the fire has been put out, and they will walk you through finding the proper contractors. Your adjuster should assist you in finding a place to stay while your home is no longer livable, and they can help you figure out the financial situation you are now in.
Calling in the Restoration SpecialistsSERVPRO is a restoration company that helps people with their homes following a fire throughout the US. What makes a restoration company imperative is that you cannot just head back into your home after there has been a fire. There are numerous hazards that must be cleaned, and boarded, and a variety of other issues that must be handled first. For example, the water used to put out the fire can cause water damage, a whole other problem to add to the list following a fire.
Sort Your PropertyOnce a restoration specialist handles the details inside your home and you’re cleared to enter, it’s time to sort your property out from what can be saved and what you must part with. There may be undamaged items in your home that you can salvage. There are many more that are unsalvageable, and those items will need to be sorted and disposed of. Being the victim of a house fire is heartbreaking. It’s also a scary process to deal with, but you are not required to go through this alone. The people you hire at SERVPRO of Cypress is Here to Help you with your new needs, we are here to make sure you know what to expect and how to handle it!
Tornadoes in the Houston Area
Did you know 1,200 tornadoes hit the US each year?It is essential to be prepared for natural disasters. Do you know the difference between a tornado watch and a tornado warning? Here are a few tips that our team has put together for you to know what you might be looking at! Tornado WatchThis means conditions are favorable for development. A watch can be issued up to 8 hours in advance of severe weather. It also usually covers a large area. Take necessary precautions in case bad weather strikes. Keep up to date with changing weather status. Have a plan to take shelter in case a WARNING status is issued. Tornado Warning Means severe weather is occurring or imminent. It covers a small area. When a warning is issued, take action immediately to protect your life! Seek shelter immediately. Stay away from doors and windows. Do not attempt to outrun a tornado.
During a TornadoStay updated on weather alerts. Continue to listen to local news sources or weather services for tornado watches and warnings. At Home: Go to the lowest level interior room. Stay away from windows and doors. At workplace or school: Proceed to your tornado shelter. Do not gather in big open areas, and stay away from windows and doors. Outside: Seek shelter in a sturdy building immediately. If no safe shelter is available, lay flat in a ditch or ravine. Cover your head. If disaster strikes, call the trusted professionals at SERVPRO of Cypress to make your storm damage, "Like it never even happened."
Impacts that Water Have on Your Home
Houses flood, pipes burst, and roofs leak.
What might not seem like a big deal initially may become much worse if left unchecked? Water damage in a home can have a substantial negative impact on those living in the house. Water damage and freezing as a category is the second-most common type of home insurance claim.
Did you know?
- Nationwide, household leaks waste an estimated one (1) trillion gallons, or enough to supply 11 million homes with water for a year.
- 10% of homes with leaks waste 90 gallons or more per day.
- A leaky faucet can waste 3,000 gallons per year.
- A leak in an irrigation system can waste 6,300 gallons in a year.
- An average household leak can waste up to 10,000 gallons of water in a year.
- Annual water wastage from a typical household leak is equivalent to the water used for 270 loads of laundry. 600 showers. 1,200 loads of dishes in a dishwasher. 6,250 flushes of a standard toilet. 80,000 servings of water.
Flooding and water damage are very invasive. Water quickly spreads throughout your home and gets absorbed into floors, walls, furniture, and more. SERVPRO of Cypress arrives quickly and starts the water extraction process almost immediately. This immediate response helps to minimize the damage and the cleaning and restoration costs. SERVPRO of Cypress provides emergency cleaning and restoration services 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, including all holidays.
Trust Team WIlson
When you experience commercial or residential damage, do you know who to call next?Did you know that it is necessary to begin the restoration process as soon as possible?! Analyzing the damage on your own leaves behind many unnoticed areas that can cause havoc later or can lead to bigger damage to your property. SERVPRO of Cypress has trained professionals who are equipped to take care of everything, from analyzing to repair and restoration. Here are a few reasons why you should consider our team.
Why SERVPRO of Cypress?
- Services on Time: We provide emergency services and are at your service as soon as you reach out to us for help.
- Expert Personnel and Technology: We provide highly trained technicians who are familiar with advanced technology designed for property damage restoration. With IICRC industry certifications, our staff is equipped with the knowledge to restore your property.
- Low Restoration Costs on High-Quality Process: Our “restore first” mentality helps to lower costs and get you back in your home or business sooner. This focus relies upon our specialized training and equipment to restore your property back to pre-event condition.
- Insurance Claim Handling: We are also experts in handling insurance matters. If you have no experience in filling insurance claims, then we can provide a stress-free claims process where we manage the insurance paperwork and process.
Tips for your Water Heater
Did you know that in a home, the water heater accounts for about 18% of the energy used?As a result, a water heater is one of your home's most critical and costly appliances. Proper water heater maintenance is necessary to guarantee that it continues to function properly and does not cost you too much. Checking on your water heater in the spring is an excellent idea. Water damage can occur quickly, so it's crucial to ensure sure it's in good operating order. Our team has put together a few tips to keep your water heater running at peak performance.
If you experience water damage, SERVPRO of Cypress has a team of highly trained professionals to help you 24 hours a day!
- To determine if your anode rod needs to be replaced, inspect it every two years or if the warranty has ended every year.
- Attach a garden hose to the valve at the base of the water heater tank every six months to remove sediment. Please turn off the electricity and run the hot water until it cools down for safety.
- A plumbing specialist should perform a yearly check of the shut-off valve and all piping. Broken valves, loose or moist joints, and rust are signs that more severe harm is on the way.
- Turn the temperature down to one. There is no reason to keep your water heater above it. At that temperature, you can do everything you need. But, of course, keeping your water heater hotter can cause it to break down much faster.