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Types of Damage That Are Likely After a Storm

9/1/2020 (Permalink)

Thunderstorms are a tricky thing to prepare for. While they are common and many come through without causing any damage at all, they all have the potential to cause issues. Between high winds, heavy rains, hail and more, there are a lot of problems that severe weather can cause around your house.

Fortunately, by being aware of these possibilities, you can better prepare for them and be sure your home is as protected as possible against them. By examining some of the most common types of storm damage, you can give your home a thorough post-storm examination to check for all possible damages.

The Possible Damages After a Thunderstorm

Damage From Projectiles

When winds rage outside, they are not just slamming into your home—they are also picking up projectiles along the way. High winds can often snap off weak tree branches, carrying them straight toward your home where they can cause exterior damage, broken windows and more. Another common culprit of this is patio furniture, which seems heavy but can often be lifted easily by high winds. Trimming back trees and securing all loose objects is highly recommended.

Damage From Heavy Rain

When heavy rain moves through an area, it can cause flash flooding and moisture buildup, especially if it comes about suddenly. Overwhelmed storm drains, poor landscaping drainage and inadequately sealed windows and doors are all common culprits for moisture to work their way in and begin causing issues. Moisture damage can be extremely serious if not treated quickly, even giving rise to mold and mildew within your home, so it is best to inspect thoroughly for this after every shower.

Damage From Hail

While every thunderstorm does not contain hail, the ones that do tend to cause the most damage. Hail can range from pea- to golf ball-sized, which can cause damage to cars, exterior features and the roof of your home. Hail has even been known to break glass and dent siding, which can cause even more moisture damages in time.

If you have storm damage in your home, you can depend on us to help. Contact us 247 to report your damage and have our team of expert technicians get dispatched to you as quickly as possible to have your home restored.

How to Inspect Your Roof After a Storm

9/1/2020 (Permalink)

Severe weather such as thunderstorms can be extremely frightening, especially if it came directly through your area. While it is true that all storms do not cause damage, it is also true that all of them have the potential to. Between hail, strong winds and heavy rain, there are many issues that can arise from every single storm that occurs.

Fortunately, catching problems early on can make a huge difference as you work to restore your home after a storm. Letting issues sit unattended can cause them to compound, but if you can catch them early, you can often get them taken care of with much less of a headache. Once of the best ways to do this is by inspecting your roof after every storm as part of your post-storm inspection checklist. Here are some tips to doing so safely:

Safely Inspecting Your Roof After a Storm
Check inside if your attic is accessible. If you have attic access, that is often a great place to start your inspection. Look for obvious signs of damage such as daylight showing through the ceiling, dark stains or spots on the wood and sagging, which may point to holes that have caused water damage.

Do an on-the-ground inspection. Checking out your roof from the ground can often tell you most of what you need to know, especially if you have a pair of binoculars. Look for any shingles that are missing or hanging loosely, loose debris or issues with the flashing that may point to spots where moisture can work its way in.

Only use a ladder if it is safe to do so. If you find any of these types of spots and it is safe to climb a ladder, you can do a closer inspection if you feel comfortable. This can be a great way to check any gutter debris, loose nails or any spots you could not see from down below.

If you have damage to your roof or somewhere else in your home from a storm, do not hesitate to give us a call. Our expert technicians can always provide a quick response. Contact us today to learn more about it.

Signs That You May Have Storm Damage to Your Home

9/1/2020 (Permalink)

Sustaining storm damage to your home is never a fun experience. While some damages are certainly more severe than others, whatever the issue is, you will want to have it quickly addressed in order to avoid the issue compounding and creating more damages down the road.

Unfortunately, many damages can be invisible until they become severe, even with performing storm inspections after each one moves through. Fortunately, there are still some signs that damage may present, and if you know what to look for, you can often catch them much more quickly.

What to Look for That May Indicate Household Storm Damage
A damp, musty smell. If water damage is seeping into your house somewhere, you will often notice a damp or musty smell in the area where it is present. This is extremely common in basements or attics that may have leaks around their perimeter that have yet to be noticed, so if things start to feel damp in any of your rooms, you may want to look more closely.

Warping wood around windows or doors. If there are issues with the weatherproofing seals around your windows and doors, water may be seeping in from the outside but not showing up on the inside of the home. However, if you notice the windowsills or door frames becoming warped, swollen or otherwise misshapen, this can be a sign that there is water leaking in somewhere that should be addressed.

Damage to your ceiling in the home. If you do not have attic access, it can be difficult to do a full inspection of your roof after every storm, as checking the attic is always recommended. However, if you notice dark or sagging spots on the ceiling below the attic, this is a good sign that you might have roof damage that has led to a leak.

Peeling paint. Moisture damage will manifest in a number of ways, and peeling paint is one of them. Paint will begin to peel due to moisture and humidity, especially around where the ceiling meets the wall.

If you suspect storm damage in your home, we can come check it out and help you get to the bottom of it. You can call us any time to receive quick service from our expert technicians—get in touch today to learn more.

Wet or Dry Sprinkler Systems: Which is Right for your Business?

9/1/2020 (Permalink)

While there are many sprinkler system types, the two most commonly used are wet and dry sprinkler systems. Fire Systems, Inc. repairs, installs, and inspects all types of sprinkler systems for commercial businesses in Atlanta and the state of Georgia. Fire Systems can help you choose which sprinkler system is best for your fire protection needs.

Wet vs. Dry Pipe Sprinkler Systems 

Both wet and dry sprinkler systems extinguish fires using water, just in different ways.

In a wet system, the pipes are filled with pressurized water. When a fire occurs, the system immediately discharges water to extinguish the fire.

Conversely, dry systems are filled with pressurized nitrogen or air that keeps water at a riser.  When a dry sprinkler system goes off, the pressure in the pipes drops, a valve opens, and water flows through the pipes and out to extinguish the fire.

Wet Sprinkler Systems

The sprinkler heads in a wet system are connected to pipes that are filled with water. The system automatically goes off when a fire is detected. Wet sprinkler systems are the number one choice for most businesses because they’re simple to use and require little maintenance. This system type is also very reliable since the water is automatically dispersed when a fire occurs.

Dry Sprinkler Systems

Sprinkler heads in a dry sprinkler system are connected to pipes that are filled with pressurized nitrogen or air. The gas or gas holds back water until a fire is detected.

Dry systems are the second most commonly used system. They are ideal for unheated buildings, parking garages, and warehouses since these types of properties can experience temperatures below 40°F (4.44 °C). Dry systems are also recommended for protecting areas that store sensitive equipment to minimize damage.

When Storms or Floods Hit, SERVPRO of Douglasville is Ready!!

9/1/2020 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Douglasville specializes in storm and flood damage restoration.  Our crews are highly trained and we use specialized equipment to restore your property to its pre-storm condition.

Faster Response

Since we are locally owned and operated, we are able to respond quicker with the right resources, which is extremely important. A fast response lessens the damage, limits further damage, and reduces the restoration cost.

Resources to Handle Floods and Storms

When storms hit Douglasville, we can scale our resources to handle a large storm or flooding disaster. We can access equipment and personnel from a network of 1,650 Franchises across the country and elite Disaster Recovery Teams that are strategically located throughout the United States.

Have Storm or Flood Damage? Call Us Today 770-489-5659

Weather service increases odds of 'extremely active' Atlantic storm season

8/13/2020 (Permalink)

The National Weather Service revised its predictions for the 2020 Atlantic hurricane center, saying the region could see up to 25 named storms in an "extremely active" year.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Climate Prediction Center, a division of NWS, said it expects 19 to 25 named storms this season. Before the start of hurricane season -- June 1 -- the agency predicted 13 to 19 named storms, still an above-normal year. 

Under the revised forecast, the Climate Prediction Center said there will be seven to 11 hurricanes with three to six major hurricanes -- Category 3 or higher.

"This year, we expect more, stronger and longer-lived storms than average, and our predicted ACE [Accumulated Cyclone Energy index] range extends well above NOAA's threshold for an extremely active season," said Gerry Bell, lead hurricane forecaster at NOAA.

The 2020 Atlantic hurricane season has already seen nine named storms and two hurricanes, Hanna and Isaias. Each of the storms set a record for earliest named storm of its letter. Historically, the ninth named storm of the year doesn't develop until October.

Hurricane season began in June, but the peak of the season typically starts in August. The season ends Nov. 30.

In June, the Climate Prediction Center said a lower chance of an El Niño this year will bump up the chances of an active hurricane season in the Atlantic Ocean.

Handling Grease Fires That Flare Up on Your Grill

8/6/2020 (Permalink)

Grease fires can happen to anyone when they are cooking, but that does not make them any less frightening or damaging to you and your home. Because grills are often used primarily to cook meat, grease fires are extremely common during cookouts—there is data that indicates that over 5,000 grill fires happen each year, leading to millions in damages and thousands of personal burns.

Although anyone can experience a grease fire no matter how many precautions they take, by following these safety guidelines, you can significantly reduce the chances of one happening to you, keeping your cookouts safer for everyone around.

How to Prevent and Handle Grease Fires When Grilling

1. Perform the proper grill maintenance. Cleaning your grill’s grease traps and drip pans is always the No. 1 recommendation when it comes to preventing grease fires, because it is something that even the most experienced grill-masters can forget. These trays will typically be located underneath your burners and should be removed and emptied when the grill is off. Making it a habit to do this before you start grilling for the day is best.

2. Keep your grates cleaned. In addition to your drip pans, your grill’s grates can also use some TLC to prevent fires. Grease can become stuck on the grates after you grill, and because these can ignite if they get too hot, they can pose a hazard if not handled. Scrape your grill grates thoroughly after every use while the grill is still warm to prevent these food bits from posing a hazard next time.

3. Have a fire extinguisher handy. While many fires can be extinguished with water, putting out a grease fire requires special considerations due to their unique nature. Keep a multi-purpose fire extinguisher that is rated for grease fires nearby every time you use your grill so you can stop any fires before they grow out of hand.

If you have had fire damage to your home due to a grilling incident, you can count on us to be there for you. Give us a call at any hour to learn more about our restoration processes and receive a quick response from our team of technicians.

Preventing Dangerous Flare-Ups When You Use Your Grill

8/6/2020 (Permalink)

If you are cooking on your grill and you see a sudden flame shoot up, that is called a flare-up—a sudden surge of a flame that is typically caused by dripping fat falling on hot coals. Flare-ups are typically common on charcoal or hybrid grills, as gas grills have grease traps that prevent fats from coming into contact with the burners for the most part.

Flare-ups are a normal part of grilling and are generally not cause for alarm, unless they are large and do not dissipate on their own.

Fortunately, many flare-ups can be prevented altogether, and if one does arise, you can learn how to deal with it effectively and quickly to avoid it spreading to nearby objects.

How to Prevent Grilling Flare-Ups at Your Next Cookout

Trim any excess fats from foods. Because the cuts of meat that are good for grilling are also ones that contain a lot of fat, there are important considerations when grilling to prevent flare-ups and stay safe. While leaving some fat is OK, trim as much as you are able to without interfering with the flavor of your chosen cut of meat.

Choose marinades with less oil. If you are marinating your meat, choosing a marinade that is not oil-based can be safer when you grill. Oil is also a fat, so if your meat is saturated in it and then the marinade drips down onto the coals, a flare-up can occur.

Create a two-zone fire. If a flare-up persists more than a few seconds, moving the item to a different spot on the grill is recommended, which is made easier and safer if you have a two-zone fire set up on your grill. A two-zone fire involves putting coals on half of the grill to provide direct heat to foods, while leaving the other half coal-free so foods can receive indirect heat still. By moving your food to a spot of the grill without coals underneath, you can allow the flare-up to die out and avoid starting another.

If your home or property has been damaged due to a grill fire, we are here to make it right. You can call us at any time to learn more about what we do or receive a quick response to your damage call.

How Grill Fires Get Out of Hand

8/6/2020 (Permalink)

If you love to grill as much as we do, hearing about a grill fire taking place can be quite alarming. There are many reasons why grill fires can start, and they are far more common than people typically realize—the U.S. Fire Administration has found nearly 6,000 grill fires occur each year, with the most instances occurring during the summer.

While grill fires can happen to anyone, regardless of how careful they are being, taking the proper precautions can significantly reduce the chances that they will occur at your next cookout. Below, we examine the science of how these fires spread so you can consider how to best prevent them when you grill.

How Grill Fires Spread and Cause Damage

A grease fire starts due to improper cleaning. Cleaning your grill is one of the most important parts of grill owner maintenance, both because it helps your food cook better and reduces the chances that you will have a fire. If your grill grates and grease traps are not cleaned, a grease fire can start and quickly envelop your grill. You should always grill with a fire extinguisher nearby just in case, but cleaning your grill is the best step to prevention.

A flare-up ignites an object too close to the grill. Flare-ups are a normal part of grilling and they are typically not severe. Unfortunately, if you have your grill too close to a flammable object, a small flare-up can cause a disastrous fire. It is recommended you keep at least three feet around your grill empty of all flammable materials—this includes porches, siding and plants, as well as children or pets that could get injured.

An accident happened with an unattended grill. Fires can start and spread with a moment’s notice, and if your grill is unattended when one happens, you may not notice it until it has become too late. Never leaving your grill unattended is the best choice—even if you are just taking a quick break, always have someone take your place and watch it.

If your home has been damaged due to a fire, you can count on us to help you out with our proven fire restoration techniques. Learn more today and get in touch at any time of day to receive a quick response from our experienced team.

How to Buy a House With Water Damage

7/29/2020 (Permalink)

When planning to buy a house with water damage, it is important for you to be able to determine the extremity of the damage before closing the deal. This is especially true if the house is likely to experience future problems as a result of the water damage. To buy a house with water damage, you should first work with an inspector to have the water damage assessed, then work with a contractor to determine the costs for the water damage repairs. You can then submit a bid to the seller that considers the repair costs for correcting the water damage. Ask the right questions. When considering buying a house with water damage, there are some questions you should ask going in. Ask the following questions when talking to the seller about the home:

  • Is the water damage from flooding?
  • How long was the water been sitting in the home? How much damage was done, what kind, and how was it fixed?
  • Was the home stripped down or were walls simply washed or bleached?
  • Has the wiring been checked for salt infiltration? Have the wires been examined for rot?

Have the home inspected. Once you've asked preliminary questions, it's important to have the home inspected. Even if repairs were attempted, there may be underlying damage that went unnoticed.

  • Hire a reputable home inspector in the area. Have the home carefully inspected for any existing damage.
  • As water damaged homes may have a lot of issues, it might not be a bad idea to conduct more than one inspection just to be sure you've gotten the full sense of the damage.

Determine how to handle mold. While a good house inspector can assess for a lot of damage, mold is not easily detectable. You will need to have a second inspector come in and specifically check for mold.

  • Mold is a scary problem as it can cause health effects. Have a mold inspection conducted before making any offers on the house.[3]
  • Go for an industrial hygienist over a run-of-the-mill mold inspector. A more thorough examination will be conducted.

After purchasing the home.

Obtain flood insurance. As the home was water damaged once, it's likely in a region where it's susceptible to water damage. It's vital to get flood insurance if you’re planning on buying a water damaged home.

  • Ask the agent you're working with for a list of insurance agencies that provide flood insurance. Look at their reviews online and reach out to past clients. You can also ask for recommendations from other homeowners in the area who likely have flood insurance.[6]
  • Determine about how much insurance companies cover in the event of a flood. If coverage is minimal, the house may not be a wise investment.

Call SERVPRO of Douglasville and get an estimated cost of repairs. You need to determine how much repairs will cost. This is a major factor of whether or not you can afford a flood damaged home.

  • SERVPRO will assess the damages on the home and provide several reports. These reports will overview the various types of necessary repairs and include an estimated cost.