5 Ways to Prevent Pipes From Bursting in the Winter
Be aware of frozen pipes during freezing weather.
When water freezes, it expands, and weak metal or plastic pipes that aren't insulated are more susceptible to bursting or leaking. As the weather gets into freezing temperatures, follow these tips to keep your pipes running.
1. Allow the faucet to drip: When pipes freeze, the pressure created by the blockage and faucet causes the pipe to burst. Allowing the faucet to be open and drip will relieve pressure in the system. If the faucet has both hot and cold water pipes, turn both handles slightly so that each pipe is open. If it is a single-handle faucet, turn it to warm.
2. Keep the Heat On: Always keep the heat on in your home to keep your pipes warm and prevent the water from freezing. If you leave for a long period of time, keep your home between 50-55 degrees.
3. Apply Heating Tape: There are two types of heating tape for water pipes. One turns on and off by itself when it senses that heat is needed. The other type requires a plug when heat is needed. Heating tape acts as an electrical blanket for pipes during cold spells. These can be very useful when you do not want to think about keeping your faucets dripping. However, much like space heaters, these products can be dangerous so you must use safety precautions.
4. Seal Up Cracks and Holes: Seal the gaps and holes that are letting cold air where pipes run through walls or floors. You can use spray foam insulation or caulk to fill the gaps. If possible, it is best to seal the holes on both the interior and exterior side of wall or floor.
5. Add Extra Insulation: Pipes that are located in attics or basements that may not be insulated will likely require extra insulation to keep them warm. Pipes can be fitted with foam rubber or fiberglass sleeves to help decrease the chances of freezing.
If you are in need of water damage mitigation services, call SERVPRO of Chattanooga at (423) 326-1604.
3 Reasons Your Basement is Leaking- Hixson, TN 37343
Understand where the water in your basement is coming from to avoid future issues.
Every time we have a significant amount of rain, I find a puddle of water in the same space in my garage. You might have the same issue in your garage, basement, or crawlspace (that you may not be aware of). Understanding where this water comes from and knowing how to monitor it is vital in ensuring that you will not have unexpected issues.
Reason #1: Ground Water – Ground water is one of the main causes of water in your basement. The water either accumulates from excessive rainwater, or through horizontal strata in the ground. If the water in your basement get worse when it rains often, this can likely be the a cause. If the water accumulates in puddles, the best solution is to squeegee out the sitting water and find the source of entry to seal up.
Reason #2: Backed-Up Sewer Pipes – This is a bit more serious than rain water. This will likely take a professional to diagnose exactly where the sewer line is backed up, but it can have numerous causes such as clogged toilet, clogged bath tub drain, washing machine back up, or even a floor drain back up. If you have discovered sewer water drainage in your basement, you will need to call a professional to thoroughly and accurately clean the biohazard. Our SERVPRO of Chattanooga professionals are equipped with the knowledge and tools to clean the sewage water in your basement.
Reason #3: Leaking Pipes – Because many of the pipes in your home are concealed inside the walls, you may be unaware when they begin to leak or even burst. If you notice dampness in your walls and floors, it is best to call a professional to inspect the moisture within the walls. SERVPRO of Chattanooga has specialty equipment to assess the unseen damage.
While these are only a few reasons why you may find water in your basement, always feel free to call a SERVPRO of Chattanooga professional with your questions and concerns. We are available to serve you 24/7, 365 days a year. Give us a call at (423) 326-1406.
Fire Strikes a Commercial Building in Hixson, TN
Earlier this week, a commercial building in Hixson, TN experienced a fire that left their building full of smoke and soot damage. SERVPRO of Chattanooga was called out immediately to assess the damage. When you experience a fire in your home or business, the smoke and water damage from the firefighters' extinguishing efforts will likely cause additional damage. If you experience a fire loss in your home or business, here are some tips to better understand the fire restoration process.
- Emergency Contact
When you call us, you will be asked questions regarding the fire damage event that will help us respond immediately with the appropriate team, equipment, and resources.
- Inspection and Fire Damage Assessment
SERVPRO of Chattanooga carefully inspects the entire home or business- not just the immediate area. Sometimes, soot and water affect areas that are not always seen. This step is crucial to developing a plan of action.
- Immediate Board-up and Roof Tarp Service
Fire damage can often compromise windows, walls, and roofs, as seen in the photo of the commercial property. To maintain security and to protect against further damage, we can board up missing windows and walls and place tarps on damaged roofs.
- Water Removal and Drying (if water is present)
The water removal process begins almost immediately and removes the majority of the water. Most of the water occurs if pipes melt and leak, or from the firefighters' efforts to extinguish the fire. We use dehumidifiers and air movers to remove the water complete the drying process.
- Removal of Smoke and Soot from All Surfaces
We use specialized equipment and techniques to remove smoke and soot from ceilings, walls, and other surfaces.
- Cleaning and Sanitizing
We clean, sanitize, and disinfect all of the restorable items and structures that were damaged by the fire. We’re also trained to remove several types of odors using industrial air scrubbers and fogging equipment.
Restoration is the final step—getting your home or business to its pre-fire condition. Restoration may involve minor repairs, such as replacing drywall, painting, and installing new carpet; or it may entail major repairs such as the reconstruction of various areas or rooms in a home or business. SERVPRO of Chattanooga has a reconstruction division that focuses solely on getting your home or business back to normal, "Like it never even happened."
Understanding How SERVPRO of Chattanooga Cleans Up Water Damage Cleanup
The first thing that the water restoration company will do is start the mitigation process. This is to mitigate any future damage. For example, if there is a pipe break or a supply line break, it will need to be fixed and the flow of water will need to be stopped. It is crucial to prevent further damage by doing the mitigation process if you want to salvage as much as you can.
The next step is the water cleanup process. This involves removing the water that is already in your flooded home. The restoration company will use special tools to remove the water from your flooded home. Special pumps can be used to take out the water in your home or the water in your business. This is the first step towards the restoration of your flooded home.
The next step is the drying process. This is slightly different than the water cleanup process, because it is more thorough. The water cleanup process will have removed all the flood water in your home or the water in your business. However, there will still be plenty of moisture and wetness left. Water will have seeped into your furniture, into your couches, into your walls, and into your ceiling. In addition, there will be pockets of moisture hidden in between the walls, under the tiles, and above your ceiling. The drying process will remove all this water. Special equipment will be used, both to detect the levels of moisture and to do the drying process so that your flooded home becomes truly dry and cleaned.
The next step is the restoration process. Remember that even if your home is dry, there may be structural damage. It is imperative that you repair whatever needs to be repaired, or your home will not be safe to live in. The restoration process may involve replacing parts of your walls, floor, and ceiling. It may also involve replacing pipes if the cause of the flood was a pipe break or a supply line break. A professional restoration company has the experience to spot what needs replacement and the experience and resources to replace them.
Finally, the company will let you know when your home is safe to live in again. They will do a final inspection of your home to see if it lives up to the standards that all safe homes need to live up to. For example, they need to make sure that your appliances are safe to use and that there is no risk of being electrocuted. They also need to make sure that the ceiling is stable and will not cave in.
Visit https://www.SERVPROeastchattanooga.com/water-damage-restoration for more information on water damage.
Greeted with Kindness at SERVPRO of Chattanooga
The SERVPRO of Chattanooga team takes pride in our ability to assist you when you are faced with a water or fire disaster. When you call SERVPRO of Chattanooga at 423-326-1406, you will be greeted with kindness and compassion by our receptionist and dispatcher, Tammy. She will guide you in the necessary steps you must take to get your home or business to preloss condition. Our office team, Rachelle, Whitney, Casey, Colton, and Taylor are tasked with making sure you, our customer, understand our services and schedule with you accordingly. They will make sure the entire job runs smoothly and documented correctly until it is completely finished. Whether you are calling about an initial loss, an ongoing loss, or an emergency call, our team will walk you through each step, gather important insurance information, and answer any questions you may have.
When they receive a call from you, rest assured that our team will take care of you from start to finish and communicate updates and scheduling.
How SERVPRO of Chattanooga Gets the Smoke Odor out of Your Clothes and Belongings
At our new facility in Ooltewah, TN, we have something called an “Ozone Room”. Sounds cool, right? It is! When you have a fire in your home or business, some of your contents may not have been directly affected by the fire. However, they still may have soot and smoke odor. Similarly, your clothes will smell heavily of smoke after sitting by a campfire for a few hours.
After you have experienced fire damage in your home, SERVPRO of Chattanooga professional technicians will bring your belongings to our ozone room at our facility and store them in vaults until they are ready to be cleaned. In the ozone room, the items are confined in a small space where they are exposed to high levels of ozone. The ozone molecules attach themselves to the smoke and soot molecules, essentially destroying the molecule.
Ozone is very effective in elimination odors, especially odors of an organic nature. When your contents leave the ozone room after 24 hours, the ozone gas dissipates in 10 to 15 minutes- leaving your clothes, furniture, and other personal items smelling fresh, “Like it never even happened.” If you are in need of fire damage restoration, call SERVPRO of Chattanooga at 423-326-1406. Our team will make sure that your belongings will be thoroughly cleaned and restored to you.
How To Clean A Crawlspace- Chattanooga, TN 37314
In order to keep your crawlspace dry, you must dry it under negative pressure, meaning to dry it through suction, rather than blowing air in it. The suction drying technique is based on a dehumidifier drying the air in the room at the same time as a turbine creates a high negative pressure in the structure. In other words, in order for negative pressure to be present, more air must be removed from the crawlspace than is added to the space. If positive pressure is used to dry a crawlspace, exfiltration will occur, pushing particulate and odors into the living space of the structure.
Even the cleanest crawlspace is filled with dust, mold spores, dead insects, or worse. Our SERVPRO of Chattanooga professionals use a manometer to verify the negative pressure.
Why should you call a professional to clean out your crawlspace? For one, crawlspaces are dangerous places that must be entered with the right safety gear. If there is mold or other contaminants present, you must use the correct equipment and chemicals to clean and dry the area. If you need to inspect and clean your crawlspace, SERVPRO of Chattanooga is available 24/7.
Fire Safety During the Christmas Season in Chattanooga, TN
Between the feasts at Thanksgiving to the celebration of the new year, the holiday months are a time to enjoy holiday traditions with friends and family. However, most household fire damage happens during these months. Why is this the case? People are doing more cooking, using the fireplace, burning more candles, using decorative lights, and buying real Christmas trees. Follow these simple fire safety tips this holiday season:
When cooking, always keep your eye on the stove. Most kitchen fires happen when food is left unattended. It’s easy to get distracted and walk away for a few minutes. Always set a timer on your phone to remind yourself of the food on the stove or bring a potholder with you as a reminder. It sounds silly, but it works! Remember to keep a fire extinguisher in the kitchen at all times. When using a fireplace, always put out the fire when leaving the home or going to sleep. Also, use a fire screen to keep embers and logs from escaping.
According to the National Fire Protection Association, the incidence of candle fires is four times higher during December. In fact, four of the five most dangerous days of the year for residential candle fires are Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, New Year’s Eve, and New Year’s Day. To avoid any fire damage, keep about a foot of space between the candle and anything that can burn. This goes for real Christmas trees- the needles tend to dry out which is the perfect storm when mixed with fire. It takes 30 seconds for a dry tree to engulf in flames. Set the candles on sturdy bases and always blow them out when leaving or going to sleep. To minimize the risk of your tree drying out, buy a fresh tree with intact needles, get a fresh cut on the trunk, and water it every day.
Finally, don’t plug more than 3 strings into each other on your Christmas tree. Extension cords should be in good condition and UL-rated for indoor or outdoor use. Rather, opt for a power strip instead and be sure to unplug the lights before leaving the house or going to sleep. When hanging lights outside, avoid using nails or staples, which can damage the wiring. Rather, use UL-rated clips or hangers.
As always, SERVPRO of Chattanooga is Here to Help when you are dealing with fire damage restoration and fire damage repair. Happy Holidays!
How SERVPRO of Chattanooga Drains a Flooded Basement
If your basement has flooded in Soddy Daisy, TN, you may be at a loss regarding what you should do. No one wants to deal with a basement flood, but facing reality and following these four steps will help you to recover your property with as little residual damage as possible.
1. Call Your Insurance Agent
You may have insurance coverage for floods in your home. Because of this, you should always check over your homeowners policy and call the agent who handles your account to ask questions and make a claim if you can do so.
2. Wait for Conditions to Settle
Before you decide how to handle water removal, you will need to make sure that the water is under control. If it seems to be limited to the basement, and any outdoor water has receded, you can safely move on to draining your basement flood.
3. Choose Your Removal Method
All water removal methods are typically handled best by water damage technicians. Two typical solutions are pumping for large floods and vacuuming with a wet/dry machine for smaller ones. It is a good idea to research all of your options so that you make the best decision possible.
4. Decide on a Drying Method
Most homeowners will find that the majority of their damaged property and valuables will need to be dried, dehumidified or otherwise salvaged, as old flood water can cause irreversible damage to your investments if left to sit. The service that you hired for water removal can likely help you with drying and restoration, as well.
A basement flood is a big deal to any concerned homeowner, but being prepared can help you be less overwhelmed if this unfortunate situation is occurring or should occur in the future. Use your newfound knowledge to help protect your [City, State], house from as much lasting damage as possible.
Does Storm-Related Damage Have a Place on Your Business Tax Return?
Business owners must think of innovative ways to meet customer demands. There is, however, one variable that can throw a monkey wrench into the workings of any company: severe weather. As you probably know, storms and other natural disasters can bring your company to a standstill. If your business has sustained storm damage, you may be able to deduct some of it on your annual tax return.
Determine the Source of Your Business Damage
To know whether damage to your Hixson, TN business is tax deductible, you must first determine the source of the damage. Damage from the following types of natural disasters are often deductible:
When determining whether damage is caused by a storm, you must look for sources of other possible damage. For example, failure to properly maintain your business before the storm hit may render your organization ineligible to list it as a deductible expense.
Consider Whether Your Insurance Policy Covered the Damage
The next part of the analysis involves your insurance. If your commercial policy covered storm damage, you likely cannot deduct it on your tax filing. If, on the other hand, your insurer did not pay for the damage, you may be able to list it as a deduction. You can also usually list the difference between actual damage and the amount your insurer paid as a deduction. If you failed to file an insurance claim that would have otherwise been covered, you are probably ineligible to claim the damage as a deduction, though.
Virtually all business eventually sustain some type of storm damage. While relying on insurance to help control costs is a good idea, you must have a full-throttled strategy to ensure business continuity. A restoration service can likely help to return your company to its pre-storm condition. Then, you may be able to deduct some storm-related expenditures on your business tax return. Call (423) 326-1406.