Recent Water Damage Posts
Prepare your company for a Storm
Preparing your company for a storm can reduce damage to your property.
Hurricanes, typhoons, and other types of storms can strike suddenly and without warning. If you're a business owner or manager who lives in an area prone to severe weather events, it's important to be prepared for any potential damage that could occur during these storms. Having proper insurance coverage is one way to protect your company's assets, but there are other things you should do before a storm hits as well.
Determine your risk.
The first step to preparing your company for a storm is determining your risk. There are many factors that go into determining how much exposure you have, and it's important to understand them all before deciding how much money should be put aside for disaster relief.
- What is the nature of your business? If you run an e-commerce site, for example, then the risk of losing internet access during a storm may not be as great as if you own an auto repair shop in New York City (which would obviously suffer more damage).
- How likely is it that a particular type of weather event could occur? For example: Hurricane season runs from June 1 through November 30 each year, however there are other types of storms that can happen at other times during the year.
Prepare for the worst.
The first step is to prepare for the worst. This means having a plan in place for when you're without power, water, food and medical care for days at a time.
If you run an office or business with employees or customers who rely on your facility in order to do their jobs--or if they simply need it as a meeting place--you need to make sure that everyone knows what they should do if there's an evacuation order issued by local authorities. Have your company documents in proper order. Make sure you have copies of all important documents, keep in a secure location, and make sure they are up to date, including insurance documentation.
Perform a property inventory and inspection.
If your company was affected by a storm, it's important to document the damage and make sure you have proof of what happened. Take photos of any damage to your building, including trees that may have fallen onto or near it. Also take photos of any storm-related problems with utilities (gas, water and electricity). If there is evidence of structural damage from wind or flooding in surrounding areas such as broken windows or downed power lines on neighboring properties, take pictures of those too.
Inspect the Roofing and Building
If it's safe to do so, inspect the roof of your building and surrounding areas, including trees near the building or on nearby properties. Look for damage to the roof and any signs of leaks. Check for loose tiles or other debris that could be blown away in the wind. Also look for any trees that may have fallen on your building or nearby properties, as well as wires that may have been damaged during winds or lightning strikes.
Protect Doors and Windows
If you have glass doors and windows, put up temporary protection for them that can be removed after the storm. You can use plywood, plastic sheeting or tarps to cover the window frames. Secure these covers with rope or bungee cords so they don't blow away in high winds. Avoid using nails or screws because they may become loose during a hurricane and damage someone's property when they come loose during a storm surge (a rise in sea level caused by strong winds). Tape will also lose its adhesion after being exposed to humidity for an extended period of time
Stay away from floodwaters
Stay away from floodwaters. Don't ever drink floodwater, even if it looks clear. Don't use floodwater for cleaning purposes, it may contain chemicals such as oil, gasoline and sewage. Do not swim in any standing water; swimming pools are usually safe because they have been chlorinated, but ponds, lakes and rivers may not be so clean.
Following these tips after a storm can help reduce flood damage and ensure your business is back up and running quickly. SERVPRO has the experience and expertise to return your property back to pre storm conditions.
How to File a Storm Damage Insurance Claim
Storm damaged house in Marina del Rey, CA.
What Steps To Take When Filing a Claim After a Storm?
The aftermath of a storm can be devastating. Not only do you have to deal with the damage to your property, but also any other losses that might come from it. Luckily, homeowners’ insurance can help cover many of these costs and get you back on your feet. But you need to know exactly what steps to take when filing a claim after a storm — and how to do it right away. Here are some tips…
Confirm Your Deductible
It’s important to know your deductible amount before you file a claim. If you haven’t already, confirm this with your insurance company.
The deductible is the amount of money that you must pay before the insurance company pays for storm damage repairs. Typically, deductibles are expressed as a percentage of the total value of damaged property or as a flat fee. You will have to pay this amount before they start making payments on your behalf to cover costs associated with cleaning up from and repairing storm damage caused by high winds, hail, lightning strikes, etc.
Find Out If The Damage Is Covered By Insurance
You can do this by calling your agent or company representative and reviewing the policy. If it's not covered, you may have to pay for the damage yourself.
If you can file a claim, start by reporting any storm-related damages as soon as possible. Your insurer will likely ask that you submit photos or videos of the damage and make a list of what happened so they can assess its extent.
Document The Damage
With your insurance agent in tow, take photos of the damage and write down an itemized list of damaged items. If possible, don't move any furniture or appliances until you have a repair estimate from a contractor or repairman.
When you have estimates for repairs and replacements, be sure to make copies with the name and contact information for the contractor or repairman in case you need to get more work done at a later date.
The next thing you need to do is take pictures of the damage. This will help you prove your claims and avoid disputes with the insurance company. Take photos of the entire building, including any parts that are or were damaged during the storm. You should also take photos of everything inside your home at this time (and keep them for reference).
You should also take photos of any personal belongings that were damaged or destroyed, as well as any other property damage caused by the storm (such as cracks in walls or floors). If there is no visible evidence of damage on a piece of furniture or electronics item, but it still seems like something is wrong with it.
Notify Your Mortgage Company
It's important to notify your mortgage company of any storm damage. If the damage is severe enough, they might foreclose on your home if you don't tell them about it—even if you've already filed a claim with an insurance company. You may also need to pay for repairs yourself and then get reimbursed by your insurance company. If that happens, wait until all the repairs have been made before submitting another claim with your property insurer so that both are covered by the same policy at once.
Call Your Agent or Company Representative Immediately
If you have a claim, call your agent or company representative immediately. Tell them what happened and ask them what to do next. If they are not available, leave a message on their voicemail or send an e-mail with the following information:
- The date, time, and location of the damage
- A brief description of the damage
- Information about any people or pets involved in this loss
If you’ve suffered storm damage, it’s important to file a claim as soon as possible. This will help you get the money you need to repair your home and property in Marina del Rey, CA.
How to Avoid Water Damage While on Vacation
Make sure you shut off the water at the main valve.
Are You Going on Vacation and Worried About Water Damage?
This article is here to help! Here are some top tips for how to avoid water damage while away from home.
Check for Leaks Before You Leave
1. Check for leaks in the basement. Make sure that all pipes are disconnected and that there's no water pooling in any area of your home. If you're leaving a property manager or landlord to take care of it, make sure they know about any problems so that they can fix them before your return date.
2. Check for leaks in the garage.
3. Check for leaks in the attic. As with basements and garages, check behind storage boxes and furniture to ensure there aren't any hidden sources of moisture (which could lead to mold).
Don't Forget To Turn Off the Water
You should also make sure you shut off the water at the main valve. It might be a good idea to use some tape or a marker to mark this valve, so you don't forget where it is when you leave, or if someone else is helping with your vacation preparations. The last thing you want is for someone in your home while on vacation to turn on the faucet in their bathroom and get into trouble because there's no running water!
Don't forget about your hot water heater either — the last thing anyone wants is for their water heater to malfunction while they're away from home.
Know Where Your Water Shut-off Valves Are
If you're not sure where the water shut-off valve is, call a plumber. If it's not available on your property, you can look at an online map of your home to find out where it might be.
If there are children or pets in the house, make sure that someone stays with them and monitors their behavior for any signs of illness following a flood situation.
Turn Off and Disconnect the Dishwasher and Washing Machine Hoses
The first step is to turn off and disconnect the dishwasher and washing machine hoses. To do this, you'll need to locate their water supply valves (usually underneath them) and turn them off. You can also just turn off their main water supply valve if they're connected to one.
Next, there are two ways to disconnect: by sliding the hose out of its housing or by unscrewing it with a wrench (or both). If you opt for the latter method, remember that you'll need a large enough wrench that will fit around your hoses' connections—you don't want them falling apart on you.
Finally, remember that even though these appliances have been unplugged from regular power sources for days now, turning off their water supplies does not mean they are "off." They still contain residual energy in their motors and pumps which could cause damage if not properly stored away from other objects or people.
The last thing you want when on vacation is to come home to a water-logged house. To avoid this from happening, be sure to check for leaks before leaving and make sure that all hoses are disconnected from the washer and dishwasher. Also remember not to forget about your drains! It may seem like common sense, but if left unattended these problems can drain your wallet as well as your home's foundation.