Recent Posts

4 Ways Homeowners Can Prevent a Sewer Backup

5/25/2022 (Permalink)

Leakage of water from a toilet due to blockage of the pipe Be cautious about what you put down the drain, respond quickly to problems, and install technical devices to divert water elsewhere.

Four Ways Homeowners Can Prevent Sewer Backups

When water comes up from the drainage system, homeowners experience a sewer backup. This water is likely highly contaminated with undesirable pathogens; as it saturates into the structure, it complicates the cleaning, requiring extensive drying, sanitizing and rebuilding. Owners in Fall City, WA, can take steps to prevent this situation by consistently following these safety measures.

1. Minimize Clogs

Do not flush anything or drain substances that are bulky or congeal. In the bathroom, only use toilet paper, and in the kitchen, toss rice, oil, eggshells and coffee grounds in the trash. If in doubt, dispose of something in the trash.
If you observe changes in water flow or an unusual odor, you may have a clog starting. Contact professional sewer cleaning services to inspect the plumbing.

2. Keep a Snake Handy

This tool is a long tube consisting of a cable with a coil and a handle. You can snake the drain with it, pushing out a clog and thwarting a backup issue. The tool comes in a variety of sizes. Smaller ones work well for bathroom sinks that often suffer from hair blockages. Larger ones provide depth for commodes.

3. Get Ahead of Storm Damage

Natural weather events may increase the local water levels, causing overflows from the nearby sewers. The water could enter the basement or downstairs floor of the home. You can install several devices to move water out, such as the standpipe, floor drain plug and backwater valve.

4. Observe Changes in the Yard

Along with flooding, sewer breaches can happen when external objects like tree roots harm the pipe. If a line punctures, dirt and sand can enter, leading to a significant clog. Monitor the lawn, and know where your sewage pipe is. If you observe dips or water accumulation, seek help.

Owners have options to mitigate backup concerns. Be careful what you put down the drain, react quickly to problems and install technical devices to move water elsewhere.

Why Basements Flood and What To Do About It

5/18/2022 (Permalink)

the old dirty cellar flooded from a pipe break A flooded basement doesn't have to be a long-term disaster. Flood damage can be repaired with the help and advice of SERVPRO's restoration experts.

What Causes Basement Flooding And What You Can Do About It

A flooded basement is one of a homeowner's worst fears. Because flooding can have many complex and related causes, recovering from the damage and preventing a repeat event in the future calls for the help of a flood restoration company. These professionals can remove the water, mitigate any continuing damage, and get your basement back in tip-top condition. Typically, a basement flood is caused by one of the following issues.

Groundwater Intrusion

Basements occupy the lowest level of a home, making them highly vulnerable to water intrusion. Situations that could lead to water entering a basement include:

  • Heavy rain or snowmelt
  • Cracked foundation or walls
  • Clogged basement drains
  • Sump pump failure
  • Improper grading of property

Many basements have floor drains and sump pumps to quickly remove excess water, but these systems can be overwhelmed if water enters the home faster than it can be pumped or drained away.

Sewer Backup Flooding

Wet weather isn't a factor in every instance of a flooded basement. Backups in storm or sanitary sewers are another possible cause. While sewers are designed to carry water and waste away from a home, sometimes they fail and the flow stops or reverses. This backup might be caused by a break or blockage in the drain.

Leaky or Broken Pipes

A suddenly wet basement during otherwise dry weather might also be the result of plumbing issues such as damaged pipes. Leaky pipes can lead to a slow, steady accumulation of water that may go unnoticed for a while. Broken pipes, however, will make themselves known right away. A related problem to watch for is a failed hot water heater or water supply tank. Pipe repair by a professional plumber should address this source of water in your basement.

A wet or flooded basement in North Bend, WA, doesn't have to be a long-term disaster. With the help and advice of restoration experts, damage from today's flooding can be repaired and tomorrow's water problems can be prevented.

3 Procedures for Treating Employee Burns at Your Business

5/2/2022 (Permalink)

First Aid Training - Burn injury. First aid course. Injuries that may occur while you and a safety officer or team are dealing with the aftermath of fire damage are part of protecting employees at work.

3 Workplace Procedures For Treating Employee Burns

Protecting employees at your Issaquah, WA, workplace includes injuries that might occur while you and a safety officer or team are handling the aftermath of fire damage. Some areas or items may still retain heat and result in a burn if an employee tries to move or touch it. However, keeping a first aid kit with burn response equipment can help heal or treat a burn until an injured employee can seek professional medical help.

1. Examine the Seriousness of the Burn

Burns occur in degrees that vary from a first-degree burn, which is the least serious, to a third-degree burn, which is the most serious and usually requires immediate medical attention. You can treat most first-degree burns on your own with a medical kit. First, run the burned area of skin under cold water or apply ice. Avoid breaking any blisters that occur with the burn and keep the employee calm as possible during treatment.

2. Apply Bandages

If the burn is obvious or includes blisters, you can administer burn first aid by bandaging the area. Use a thin gauze and take care not to wrap the area loosely to prevent the gauze from sticking to the wound. Have the employee sit down and watch for signs of shock, such as paleness and a change in breathing.

3. Remove the Victim From Fire Damage

Removing the employee from the area where the burn took place can keep him or her calm and give you a better opportunity to examine the burn and treat it. You may want to call in fire restoration and mitigation service to complete the cleanup process, especially if you discover other areas that may pose a burn threat to your other employees.

When your Issaquah, WA, employees suffer burns at work while trying to handle a fire or its aftermath, knowing how to treat that burn and what he or she may need in the way of professional medical care can help you to better handle the situation.

5 Things To Try When Your Smoke Alarm Beeps

4/6/2022 (Permalink)

smoke detector with white smoke and red warning light You fire alarm has a test/silent button. Try to use that to stop the beeping.

If Your Smoke Alarm Beeps, Try These 5 Things

You installed a fire alarm in each room of your home in North Bend, WA, when you moved in. You regularly test the alarms to make sure they're working. The worst thing, then, is when one of the alarms starts beeping. It can take a while to figure out which one is beeping. Then, how do you make it stop? Here are five things to try.

1. Change the Batteries

Start simple and change the batteries. Even if you just did it, it's possible one of them is faulty or you accidentally mixed up an old one with a new one.

2. Use the Silent Button

You fire alarm has a test/silent button. Try to use that to stop the beeping. This is probably also a good time to find the manual (or look it up online if it was thrown away) for ways to specifically test your brand of alarm.

3. Reset the Alarm

A slightly more complicated solution is to reset the whole device. Again, the manual or YouTube can provide help for how to conduct a full alarm reset. Don't get discouraged here, decide that it's not worth the effort, and leave the alarm unarmed. Fire damage occurs when you least expect it, so it's important to keep all of your detectors up and running properly.

4. Check for Dust

Some detectors are hardwired to your electrical system instead of using batteries. If dust is affecting the wiring, that could be a reason that your alarm is beeping. Use a keyboard air blower to clear out dust build up.

5. Replace the Whole Thing

When no other solution will stop the beeping, it's time to replace the detector. They don't last forever, and chances are that it's been longer than you realize that since you installed your fire alarm. Don't put this off. The safety of your family could depend on functioning smoke detectors.

Troubleshooting your smoke detector can be a headache, but it's worth the effort to keep your family safe from fire and smoke damage. If a fire does occur, a fire damage assessment will help you determine the cause.

Factors Affecting Water Damage Mitigation

4/1/2022 (Permalink)

Restoration machines are cleaning water damage in a home. The class of water damage that you have also affects the time and procedures required to fix it.

Mitigation Of Water Damage: Factors To Consider

There are three main factors that determine how flood restoration specialists approach the water cleanup process in your home in Mirrormount, WA. They must determine whether they are dealing with contaminated water or a leak from a clean source. Technicians also must survey how extensive the problem is according to area size and the damage class. Each detail helps them form a plan for returning your home to its normal state.

Contamination Level

A supply line leak or pipe burst releases clean water into your home, but what happens if the flood comes from another place? Category 3 damage happens when your home is flooded from a contaminated source:

  • Sewer line
  • Storm water
  • Groundwater

Even if the leak starts as Category 2 from an overflowing appliance, if the standing water lingers for too long or floods the floor below it, it can easily become a contaminated water problem. Extra disinfection steps are required to deal with extensive contamination.

Area Affected

It makes sense that the smaller the area that is affected by the flood, the less damage you will have. Conversely, if a whole floor of your home is flooded, the sewage cleanup process will be considerably more extensive. The technicians whom you hire to mitigate the damage can assess the issue and give you an estimated timeline for the completion of the repairs.

Damage Class

The class of water damage that you have also affects the time and procedures required to fix it. For example, Class 1 damage only affects part of a room and there is very little absorption into the materials surrounding the leak. Class 3 damage, however, means that the entire room from floor to ceiling is compromised and must undergo remediation. You need professional guidance to determine how much damage there really is.

There are several factors that affect the process and time frame for mitigation. To make sure the contaminated water damage in your home is mitigated thoroughly, trust your local restoration experts.

Flood Features To Look For When for Buying a Commercial Property

4/1/2022 (Permalink)

A Business protected from flooding with sand bags and plastic film. To help prevent tidal flooding, concrete blocks or sandbags could be placed strategically.

When Purchasing A Commercial Property, Look For Flood Features

A lot goes into planning for flood prevention. Whether you are purchasing a building or having one built, it is important to take a close look at what can help keep the water back in the event of a flood.

Areas of Concern

Flooding can be a major issue for any business in Mirrormount,WA. When building or purchasing a property, you want to look for:

  • Low lying areas
  • Bodies of water within a mile
  • Swampy areas
  • Areas that have flooded previously

Although this is not to say that other areas don't flood, it is important to be prepared no matter where your business is located. Otherwise, you might need the services of a flood cleaning company.

Retaining Walls

Retaining walls are usually built around levees, lakes, retention ponds and other smaller bodies of water. They are higher than the water at a normal level and allow the body of water to fill when it floods.

Flood Plain Planning

If your business is on or near a flood plain, it is a good idea to check to see what the city plan is for the area. They should have a plan in place or already instituted. Also, make sure they have flood prevention in mind when they issue building permits that might block natural water drainage.

Coastal Defense Walls

If you are near the ocean or other large body of water, you should look for coastal defense walls. This could be concrete blocks or sandbags placed in strategic areas to help prevent tidal flooding. This is particularly important because saltwater flood cleaning is much more difficult than freshwater.

Sand Dunes and Vegetation

Some places have natural or artificial dunes that help protect property from tidal flooding. Natural barriers often work best for preventing tidal surges, waves and incursion.

No matter where you are, flood prevention should be a factor in building or purchasing a commercial property. Checking for or implementing these measures can save you both time and money later on.

Fire Insurance and Your Small Business

3/18/2022 (Permalink)

Warehouse Fire Inside Fires are generally unexpected and very destructive. Call SERVPRO if you need help!

Your Small Business And Fire Insurance

Fires can be devastating to small businesses in North Bend, WA. Not only do they cause extensive damage to equipment and property, but fires often disrupt daily operations, leading to heavy financial losses. Fortunately, fire insurance policies are available, offering many financial benefits.

• Coverage for physical damages
• Replacement or repair of office fixtures
• Protection against lost business income
• Compensation for costs of doing business in a temporary location

In some situations, this type of policy covers lost data, the interruption of digital operations, and other computer-related business dealings. Ask your insurance provider for specific information.

Identify and Reduce Risks

If you own the property or building where your business operates, you may work closely with your insurance company or a fire restoration professional to identify the most common risks and take steps to protect your premises. Even if you don't own the building, you can look for problem spots such as overloaded power strips and extension cords, stacks of flammable materials near heat sources, aging appliances, and indoor smoking areas. You may be eligible for fire insurance that covers your business contents.

Look Outside of Your Business Walls

Fires are generally unexpected and very destructive. In fact, many businesses did have appropriate preventative measures in place before suffering damage. Fires aren't always the result of something that occurs within the workplace. Sometimes, the emergency is caused by the activities of neighboring businesses, extreme weather, rioting, or vandalism. You may require coverage for the costs of smoke cleanup even if flames never reach your building.

Understand Your Coverage Needs

As you consider your business needs and discuss coverage options with your insurance provider, be realistic about your needs. Too many business owners purchase minimum coverage and then don't have the necessary funding for complete fire restoration services. Ask your insurance representative about replacement cost versus cash value terms and about eligibility requirements. Make sure you have enough coverage to get you through the entire restoration process.

Small businesses may be particularly susceptible to damages, but the right fire insurance coverage offers important protection. Learn more today to make sure your business has the coverage it needs.

How To Prepare for and Extinguish a Fire

3/14/2022 (Permalink)

Red tank of fire extinguisher. Make sure your building has the appropriate fire extinguisher for the type of fires you might face at your workplace.

How To Prepare For A Fire And Put It Out

Fires can happen at any time, at any place and often without warning. Having a fire extinguisher on hand is your first line of defense. If your building in Issaquah, WA, has a fire, it is vital to know the appropriate actions to take when fighting it. If used correctly, an extinguisher can help limit the amount of fire damage to your building. The following steps will help you prepare for and extinguish a fire:

1. Pick the Right Extinguisher

Make sure your building has the appropriate fire extinguisher for the type of fires you might face at your workplace. (This may mean having multiple extinguishers available for use.) All extinguishers are labeled in accordance with what type of fire they are to be used against. For example, a kitchen fire would require an extinguisher labeled with a ‘K,’ as it is designed for fighting fats, grease and oils.

2. Call Emergency Services

In the event of a fire, the most important step is calling emergency services. Fires can be unpredictable and quickly grow out of control. Always take the immediate step of pulling the fire alarm and ensuring back up is on its way.

3. Use the Extinguisher

Before choosing to use an extinguisher, always make sure there is a clear path for evacuation if necessary. Then follow the PASS method to operate the extinguisher:

  1. Pull - Pull the pin; this releases the locking mechanism.
  2.  Aim - Always aim low, toward the base of the fire.
  3. Squeeze - Spray the extinguisher by squeezing the handle.
  4. Sweep - Use a side-to-side sweeping motion to most effectively cover the fire.

After following these steps, if the fire is not yet out or if it re-ignites, use your evacuation route and wait for emergency services to arrive.

While knowing how to effectively use a fire extinguisher can aid in limiting fire damage, personal safety should always be your top priority. Whenever a fire has taken place, it's wise to have a fire damage assessment to ensure the building's safety before returning.

What You Need To Know About Storm Damage and Flooding

3/14/2022 (Permalink)

Trucks from a restoration company Storm damage is a headache. SERVPRO knows this, which is why we're available to respond to your call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

What You Should Know About Flooding And Storm Damage

When it comes to storm or flood damage in Fall City, WA, knowing how these things are different may help you when it comes time to conduct repairs on your business property. Many insurance companies categorize these as two separate types of damage under your policy. Here's what you may want to know.

What Is Storm Caused Damage?

Storm damage is often considered to be any damage caused by nature. Damages in this category may include

• Wind damage
• Hail damage
• Flooding caused by rain
• Broken gutters
• Fallen tree limbs

What Is Flood Caused Damage?

Flood damage is often considered to be a separate category from damage caused by a storm. Floodwater can be caused by a number of factors not related to nature. These include

• Broken or leaking pipes
• Water from fire suppression efforts
• Water from irrigation systems
• Sewer overflow

What Are Clean Up Methods?

Understanding the type of damage caused to your place of business can help when it comes time to conduct repairs. Different types of damage can require different repair methods. In many cases hiring a damage restoration service can help. These professionals have the tools and knowledge needed to deal with a variety of damages, including flooding, storm-related property destruction, and any potential mold problems that could result.

If your business has suffered damages, it's best to begin the repair process quickly in order to prevent further issues. Your insurance company might ask you to board over the damaged area. It might also be necessary to thoroughly dry the zone and inspect for possible mold growth or structural damages. In many cases, your policy may include coverage for repair costs.

When it comes to flood damage you want to protect your business. Understanding the difference between flood and storm damage can help when it comes time to talk to your insurance company and begin the repair process. If you have any questions, a professional may be able to help.

3 Things to Know About Flood Insurance

3/14/2022 (Permalink)

Flood insurance form on a table with a book. In many cases flood insurance will not cover business property located outside the building.

Flood Insurance: Three Things to Know

In the event your Fall City, WA, business has experienced flooding then you may be wondering what exactly may be included in your flood insurance policy. Fortunately, while insurance policies may vary, many contain similar coverage.

1. What May Be Covered

Most commercial insurance policies will cover the cost of damages to your building and any contents in the event of a flood. In some cases, they may even recommend a water damage restoration service to conduct the cleanup and repairs. These services may also be able to restore electronics or any documentation that may have been damaged as well.

2. What May Not Be Covered

In many cases flood insurance will not cover business property located outside the building. This can include company vehicles or any landscaping. Most insurance policies also do not cover flooding caused by neglect. This means that it is the businesses responsibility to conduct any repairs as soon as a problem is found. Losses to the business caused by having to shut down for repairs may also not be covered.

3. How Risk Factor Is Determined

Many parts of your insurance policy may be impacted by your flooding risk. Factors that could play into your flood risk include the location of your business, and average weather type for your area. if the business is built in a flood zone or you experience heavy rains regularly, you may want to purchase extra coverage for anything not included under your policy.

Knowing what's contained in your flood insurance policy is the responsibility of the policyholder. However, many flood policies contain similar insurance coverage. These packages may include situations such a storm damages or broken pipes. It may not include property outside the building, or flooding caused by acts of neglect. To know what exactly is in your policy it is recommended that you talk to your insurance agent.