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Winter Is Here, Are You Prepared?

1/3/2019 (Permalink)

Why SERVPRO Winter Is Here, Are You Prepared? SERVPRO of Breckinridge, Grayson, Meade & Hancock Counties 270-580-2200

We are at that time of year again.  This is when cold weather starts to show up and freezing temperatures threaten our area.  This can cause a headache if you are not prepared.  You need to take the time to help prevent damage from happening at your home or commercial building. 

Frozen pipes can cause extensive damage, but this can be prevented.

There are many ways to help prevent damage from a frozen pipe.  Here are a couple. 

- Opening cabinet doors will allow warm air to get under sinks and help keep pipes from freezing (especially where pipes are on exterior walls).

- Adding outdoor faucet covers to protect your exterior faucets.  You can pick these up at any of your local hardware stores.

When these things don't work... Call SERVPRO of Breckinridge, Grayson, Meade & Hancock Counties to help with the cleanup.

270-580-2200

Space Heater Safety

1/3/2019 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Space Heater Safety SERVPRO® of Breckinridge, Grayson, Meade & Hancock Counties 270-580-2200

SERVPRO Warns About the Dangers of Space Heaters When Not Used Properly

Fire does not care what season it is or whether it’s cold outside. Winter related fires are extremely common, especially when you are trying hard to keep warm. 

Our offices in Westview, KY have experience in fire damage from space heaters and can provide you with some tips to help avoid having to deal with these types of destructive events this winter season. 

SERVPRO of Breckinridge, Grayson, Meade, and Hancock Counties technicians understand that accidents happen. Placing space heaters too close to other objects or using the wrong type of heater in a particular area can cause severe problems. Please take a moment to consider some factors leading to these fires.

Oil Heaters - Should be used in areas where there is the possibility of moisture. This eliminates any electrical hazards that may be present due to water conductivity. Always keep a safe distance to avoid contact burns. 

Electric Heaters - These heaters come in a variety of shapes and sizes and can be useful for many areas in your home. However, they should never be left unattended. Thinking of electric heaters as giant toasters can help you understand how important it is to keep a constant eye on them. Make sure you have sufficient wattage to run the device and never use extension cords.

Our SERVPRO of Breckinridge, Grayson, Meade, and Hancock Counties staff gets an incredible amount of space heater-related calls every winter. People are trying to stay warm and use space heaters quite often for this purpose. However, using a space heater does not need to cause so many problems during a cold spell. Just use common sense, and always follow the directions of the manufacturer.

The professional technicians at SERVPRO of Breckinridge, Grayson, Meade, and Hancock Counties state that you follow a few simple guidelines when operating your space heaters. 

1) Always place space heaters on a flat, solid surface for proper stabilization. 

2) Purchase heaters with an automatic shut-off feature to prevent dangers from tipping. 

3) Maintain proper spacing between heaters and other objects in your home. 

4) Never leave children or pets unsupervised around operating heaters. 

5) Shut your heaters off properly before leaving your home or going to sleep. 

Following these guidelines does not ensure that you will never have to deal with fire damage from space heaters. However, you are less likely to have an unwanted consequence. If this sort of incident still strikes your home this winter season, make the call to our offices immediately. We will respond quickly and provide you with the services you need to get back to normal fast. 

Call SERVPRO of Breckinridge, Grayson, Meade, and Hancock Counties today at (270) 580-2200

January Duct Cleaning Special - 10% off

1/1/2019 (Permalink)

Why SERVPRO January Duct Cleaning Special - 10% off SERVPRO® of Breckinridge, Grayson, Meade & Hancock Counties 270-580-2200

Hello Everyone.  SERVPRO of Breckinridge, Grayson, Meade & Hancock Counties is pleased to announce a promotion on air duct cleaning.  All month long, we will be offering a 10% discount on all air duct cleanings in residential homes and commercial buildings.  Our trained production techs utilize a soft brush duct cleaning machine to clean away years of dust and debris from your heating and air conditioning ducts in your residential homes and commercial buildings.  This is a great opportunity to breathe a little easier in your home or business.  We will clean the ducts, registers, handler, and fog with a deodorizer.  You can call us to schedule an appointment or get an estimate and mention the 10% discount.  We are open 8 am to 5 pm at 4135 S HWY 259 in Westview or call at 270-580-2200.  

Important Information You Should Know About Flood Cuts

12/26/2018 (Permalink)

Why SERVPRO Important Information You Should Know About Flood Cuts Flood cuts performed in Olathe, KS home due to water damage from a flood.

If your home has been affected by flooding.  You may feel overwhelmed by the process of restoration. A flood cut is sometimes needed after a home has been damaged by water, but you may be unsure if your home needs a flood cut, especially if you’re uncertain of the meaning.

What Exactly Is a Flood Cut and How Is It Done?

The term ‘flood cut’ is a simplified term for a common practice that is sometimes required after a home has sustained water damage. A flood cut:

  • Is the process of making a cut in a wall 12 inches above the flood lines in order to tear out drywall?
  • Should be done once the home is free of hazards
  • Requires specified equipment and tools to allow for a safe removal of drywall

Why Are Flood Cuts Used?

Flood cuts are generally used to:

  • Remove damaged drywall and decrease the risk of contamination in the home
  • Allow for an accurate analysis of structural damage that has occurred
  • Allow for the restoration of structural damage

How Do I Know if My Home Needs a Flood Cut?

After flooding occurs, flood cuts are not always necessary. However, indicators that your home might need a flood cut can include:

  • Having water in your home that is contaminated with potentially hazardous bacteria
  • Having standing water in your home, even if it appears clean
  • The interior of your home remained wet or damp for an extended period

Understanding what a flood cut is, why it is sometimes necessary and when it should be used after flooding occurs can help you better understand what is going on during your home’s restoration process. If your home has sustained water damage due to a flood, it can help to contact flood damage restoration experts who can help you safely and effectively restore your home. 

How to Thaw a Frozen Pipe

12/26/2018 (Permalink)

Why SERVPRO How to Thaw a Frozen Pipe SERVPRO® of Breckinridge, Grayson, Meade & Hancock Counties 270-580-2200

Frozen water pipes are a serious risk during very cold winter weather. When water freezes in a pipe it expands and can exert pressure at over 2,000 pounds per square inch. This pressure is enough to rupture almost any pipe filled with water, which provides no place for the ice to expand. A burst pipe can spill several hundred gallons of water per hour, and that equates to thousands of dollars of damage to your home. Pipes are most susceptible to freezing when they are located:

  • in an outside wall
  • in a cabinet under a sink (especially near an outside wall)
  • in an unheated crawl space or basement

If your pipe is frozen but not yet ruptured, you must thaw it right away. There are a few thawing techniques to try, depending on where the frozen pipe is located.

Warning: Never use a blow torch or other open flame to thaw a pipe. This presents a serious fire hazard and can damage the pipe.

A frozen pipe that hasn't burst yet often reveals itself at a faucet: when you turn on the faucet and no water come out or it has slowed to a trickle, there's probably a blockage of ice somewhere in the line. It's time to take immediate action: 

  • Shut off the water to the faucet locally or at the home's main water shutoff valve.
  • Open the faucet that is supplied by the frozen pipe; do this even if you don't know where the blockage is.
  • Identify the frozen pipe and locate the blockage: Follow the pipe back from the faucet to where it runs through cold areas, such as an exterior wall or unheated crawl space. Look for areas on the pipe that have frost or ice; it may also be slightly bulged or fissured.

When you find that the frozen—but not yet burst—pipe is behind a wall or ceiling, you've got a challenge on your hands. You have three options for thawing the pipe:

  • Turn up the heat in the house and wait.
  • Cut out a section of the wall or ceiling to access the frozen section of pipe, then thaw the pipe as an exposed pipe (see next slide).
  • Use an infrared lamp to help heat the wall section in front of where you believe the pipe is frozen. Infrared lamps are better than regular heat lamps because they pass through the air without heating it and will direct more energy to warming the wall and frozen pipe.

If the frozen pipe is exposed, you have several options for thawing it. Whichever remedy, use heat the pipe from the faucet toward the frozen area. This allows water to flow out as the ice melts.

  • Hair dryer: Usually the easiest and safest way to thaw a pipe. If the pipe is close to the wall, place a cookie sheet behind the pipe to help radiate heat onto the backside of the pipe.
  • Heat lamp: You can use an infrared or incandescent heat lamp. As with a hair dryer, if the pipe is close to the wall, use a cookie sheet behind the pipe to help reflect heat onto the pipe.
  • Portable heater: A small, powerful heater works great for warming pipes under a kitchen or vanity base cabinet. Direct the heater onto the frozen section of pipe. It will work like a hair dryer on steroids!
  • Electric pipe heat tape: Heat tape is a ribbon-like wrap that contains electrical heating elements. You wrap it around the pipe you want to heat and plug it into the wall. The temperature of the tape is controlled with a thermostat. Heat tape can also be used to prevent pipes from freezing in critical areas; you can leave the heat tape on the pipe and plug it in only when needed.

There are a few things you can do to prevent the problem of freezing pipes from occurring again:

  • Leave the faucet dripping slightly during the coldest time of the day or night.
  • Open the cabinet doors to allow the heated air from the room to reach pipes inside the cabinet.
  • Wrap the problem pipe with electrical heat tape.
  • Insulate problem pipes with foam insulation wrap, especially those that run through unheated spaces. Note: Insulation merely slows the transfer of heat and will not prevent a pipe from freezing if the surrounding air is cold enough.
  • Heat unheated areas with a permanent heater, just to keep the temperature above freezing, or about 40 degrees F. Warning: Do not use portable heaters, which should never be left running unattended.
  • Remove garden hoses attached to outdoor faucets (hose bibs or sill cocks). If the faucet is not a frost-proof type, turn off the water to the faucet inside the house and drain the exterior section of the pipe and faucet.

Flooding in Kasas

11/26/2018 (Permalink)

Why SERVPRO Flooding in Kasas SERVPRO® of Breckinridge, Grayson, Meade & Hancock Counties 270-580-2200

The Living Room in this Kansas home was flooded after several days of nonstop raining. Our SERVPRO team was in town helping local franchises with an overabundance of claims. 3 people from our location dropped what they were doing and went to Kansas when we got the call that there was massive flooding and they needed as many crews as possible. Our Crew Chief was in town first to assess the damage and set up appointments so that when our production team made it to town they could begin work immediately. We were able to help several families get their property back to preloss condition. Our crew is very humbled to be able to help in times of crisis

SERVPRO® of Breckinridge, Grayson, Meade & Hancock Counties 270-580-2200

Storm in Kansas.

11/18/2018 (Permalink)

Why SERVPRO Storm in Kansas. SERVPRO® of Breckinridge, Grayson, Meade & Hancock Counties 270-580-2200

SERVPRO of Breckinridge, Grayson, Meade & Hancock Counties received a call to travel to Kansas to help with the influx of claims that had come in due to massive flooding. Our crew loaded up and was on the way in a flash. By the time the crew made the 8-hour trip, our crew chief who was in town first had called several customers and had appointments lined up and ready, so they could hit the ground running. We had three of our team members in the Kansas area for 10 days helping the local franchises during their time of crisis. 

Our team loves to be there to help and get people back on their feet and will work as many hours as it takes to get them back in their homes and "Like it never even happened."

Why Waiting For an Adjuster Has Risks

11/13/2018 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Why Waiting For an Adjuster Has Risks Flash flooding in Louisville, KY

You are relieved that you bought flood insurance, but when there has been widespread flood damage in Kentucky, it may take a long time before the adjuster makes it to your house. You are probably getting mixed advice. Some people say it is unwise to make repairs before the adjuster comes, but others say it’s your responsibility to prevent subsequent damage. It sounds risky either way, so what should you do? You don’t want to do work that the adjuster denies, but you also have a responsibility and a need to protect your property from further damage.

Here are some initial actions you can take and why:

  • Document now. Take videos and photos of all property damage to share with your flood insurance company.
  • Tarp exposed areas. If there was damage to your home’s exterior, allowing wind and rain to continue entering, then you should try to prevent this exposure.
  • Remove water as quickly as you can. Your flood problem can quickly become a mold problem in as little as 24 – 48 hours. Mold spores are abundant in the air, and colonies multiply rapidly.
  • Move belongings out of the water. If you have larger furniture items, they can be blocked or separated from the wet floor with foil to prevent further damage. Remove smaller items from the water.
  • Begin the drying process. To prevent mold damage, continue ventilating and drying your property after water is removed. If your electricity is on and safe to operate, you should use fans and air conditioning to aid this process.

These actions are all in the category of preventing additional damage, which reduces costs for everyone. What’s great about working with a reputable flood recovery company is that they likely already have established relationships with flood insurance adjusters, paving a smooth path for the claims process and for getting your home back to normal as quickly as possible.

Flooding in Kasas

11/13/2018 (Permalink)

Why SERVPRO Flooding in Kasas SERVPRO® of Breckinridge, Grayson, Meade & Hancock Counties 270-580-2200

The Living Room in this Kansas home was flooded after several days of nonstop raining. Our SERVPRO team was in town helping local franchises with an overabundance of claims. 3 people from our location dropped what they were doing and went to Kansas when we got the call that there was massive flooding and they needed as many crews as possible. Our Crew Chief was in town first to assess the damage and set up appointments so that when our production team made it to town they could begin work immediately. We were able to help several families get their property back to preloss condition. Our crew is very humbled to be able to help in times of crisis

SERVPRO® of Breckinridge, Grayson, Meade & Hancock Counties 270-580-2200

Answers to Common Questions About Mold

8/1/2018 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation Answers to Common Questions About Mold If you see signs of mold growth, smell a musty odor, find evidence of water leaks, or know of any past flooding, you should take immediate action.

What does mold look like? 

Mold can appear in many colors and could appear as a dark spot on the wall or as black specks around the window. Mold in the crawlspace may look like chalky white growth or could be dark spots behind the sink. Many people in Kentucky, recognize black mold, but it could appear in several colors, beginning with the most common. 

• Black
• Brown 
• White
• Yellow
• Blue
• Green
• Orange
• Red
• Pink 

Any sign of mold should prompt you to contact a mold remediation expert, even if the growth spot only looks like hard water stains running below the knobs in the sink. 

How can you tell if it's bad mold?

Not all types of mold are dangerous, but black mold and other forms of mold in large amounts could lead to expensive repairs and mold cleanup efforts. The best way to prevent extensive damage and repairs is to treat any appearance of mold as if it were bad mold. The only effective and reliable way to tell what type of mold is in a building is to contact an indoor environmental professional. 

Who can safely remove mold? 

An IEP uses specialized equipment and testing methods to determine which types of mold are on the property, how widespread growth is, how high levels of contamination are, and where mold growth began. DIY tests tend to be inaccurate and could lead to ineffective mold remediation efforts. 

When should you act?

If you see signs of mold growth, smell a musty odor, find evidence of water leaks, or know of any past flooding, you should take immediate action to prevent further growth and to begin mold cleanup. Mold remediation experts in Kentucky, can get you started. Any time you suspect the presence of mold in your building, you need to act quickly for the protection of your property and those people who live or work in the building.