Recent Storm Damage Posts
How to Prevent Destructive Lightning Fires on Your Property | SERVPRO® of Van Nuys South
If you are dealing with smoke or fire damage from a recent fire, call SERVPRO of Van Nuys South to learn about a restoration solution for your issue.
It’s possible to prevent many causes of home fires with the right planning and proper safety equipment. However, not all fires have manmade causes, and natural causes can threaten your home more than you might think.
There were over 70,000 claims related to lightning strike damage in 2020, so it’s much more common than most people believe. Lightning strikes about 6,000 times every minute, and just one strike within range of your home can split trees down the middle, fry your home’s electrical system and even start a dangerous fire.
No one is completely protected from this kind of disaster, so it’s equally important for everyone to take steps toward preparation.What Is Lightning?
When a naturally occurring electrical charge connects the ground to the clouds above, we see lightning. Typically, this happens during thunderstorms, but it can also occur during snowstorms, forest fires and even without any moisture in the air at all.
“Dry lightning” occurs without rain and is known to cause wildfires more frequently than any other kind of lightning strike. This threat changes as seasons do, but we must be prepared for it due to the severity and frequency of this disaster.Protecting Your Home From Lightning Fires
Lightning that directly impacts your home can cause immediate damage and even begin fires from either the heat of the strike or electrical surges inside. When a fire begins from the strike, it’s often hard to notice immediately as it will likely begin in the attic or within your walls.
After the fire is out, call an electrician to test your home’s system for malfunctions, and consider installing a lightning rod, one of the best ways to prevent lightning fires. This rod will take the energy from a strike and direct it away from your home so that you can avoid its destructive effects.
You can also add a whole-house surge protector to your electrical panel. This device can assist in preventing surges or other issues that ignite fires after a lightning strike.When Lightning Strikes Nearby
Lightning is also a major source of wildfires, with over 9,000 outdoor fires beginning from strikes each year. Even though some areas see higher risks than others, it’s important for everyone to be prepared because of how dangerous this disaster is. These fires can quickly spread to impact properties and houses.
Implementing defensible zones around your property is important, since that will prevent a fire from spreading to your structure. You should also install smoke detectors in every bedroom, floor and kitchen to have full coverage if a fire sparks.
If you suffer a fire in or around your home, call SERVPRO of Van Nuys South immediately. Recovering and restoring your home after a fire can be overwhelming, but our experts are well-trained and always ready for action!
Have you experienced smoke or fire damage in your home? Call us today to get the restoration finished fast.
The Main Ways a Storm Can Damage Your Home | SERVPRO® of Van Nuys South
When you suffer storm-related damage to your home or business, make SERVPRO of Van Nuys South your first call.
Extreme weather events are a horrible prospect for any homeowner. These severe storms bring high winds, heavy rains and other hazards that can seriously damage any home they touch.
The type of storm and events that are taking place will help determine the level of damage you may see. Other factors like your home’s build quality and the surrounding land will also come into play.
Everyone needs to be aware of storm damage, but we have to worry about a different set of problems here in California. Although we see severe storms, we face a much larger risk of flooding due to our dry soil being unable to absorb water properly. Check out these resources from the national weather service that include weather reports, tips and live forecasts.
Keep following along as we explore the main kinds of storm damage and how you can prepare for it:
Damage caused by strong winds is typically connected with tornadoes or hurricanes. However, even minor storms like the ones we see can produce speeds of over 100 mph. This wind can throw debris around your property and cause serious damage or harm.
It’s best to stay away from your glass doors or windows during a storm and avoid sleeping near external walls to stay safer. You can also take steps like removing large rocks or tying down furniture to reduce the amount of debris available.
Heavy rainfalls can bring thousands of gallons of water into a region in under an hour, accumulating around your house and cause extensive damage.
Consider implementing landscaping techniques around your property to help direct any water away from your home’s structure to limit the destructive flow. Alternatively, you can create a rain garden, which is eco-friendly and protects your land from flooding during a storm.
You should also maintain your gutters so that they can assist with removing water from the roof. When water can collect up there, the results can be catastrophic, potentially even a roof collapse.
Damage caused by debris hitting your home with substantial force is called “impact damage.” This type of damage occurs when trees fall during a storm or objects are thrown into the side of your home. The best way to prevent this is by limiting the amount of debris available and by removing any trees that are at risk of collapsing.
These disastrous weather events resulted in more than $145 billion last year in the United States. Follow these tips and prepare your property for storms in advance to reduce the risk of suffering catastrophe at your home.
When storm damage affects your home, always call SERVPRO of Van Nuys South immediately for a quick response. Our restoration professionals will help you get started on the right path so that you can get back in your house fast and back in action even faster.
When you suffer storm-related damage to your home or business, it’s important that you know who to call! Contact us today to get your storm damage restoration started faster.
Have You Properly Planned for Severe Storms? | SERVPRO® of Van Nuys South
If you discover storm damage to your home or business, reach out to SERVPRO of Van Nuys South right away
During the warmer months, severe weather becomes increasingly common. Things like lightning, floods, winds and hail all put you and your home at risk. These weather events are extremely common, and in fact, there are around 100,000 thunderstorms throughout the United States every year, so these storms are happening all the time.
In California, specifically Van Nuys, many people disregard the potential risks of storms. These people have the mindset that their area is largely unaffected by storms, but we know that’s not the truth.
Our geography makes windstorms one of the most dangerous events, with this instance from last year that caused road closures and power outages in mere moments.
It would be nice to hit a button and get rid of any dangerous weather, but unfortunately, we can’t do that. However, we can and should prepare for storms. Build an emergency kit, plan a good strategy for communication and take action to be ready for when storms strike near Van Nuys.Your Severe Weather Communication Strategy
As they often say “communication is key,” and this is especially true during dangerous weather. By knowing where your loved ones are, you can focus on yourself and everyone that is in the home instead of being distracted.
Second, it’s a smart idea to have multiple ways to receive weather alerts from officials. Television works great, but storms often knock out the signal, and cellphones always seem to run out of battery right when you need it most. An NOAA weather radio with spare batteries close by is your best bet to stay informed.
Finally, creating a communication strategy between the people in your household is crucial. This includes designating a room in the home to take shelter in, ideally in the center of the home with no windows nearby.Your Severe Weather Emergency Kit
Planning for severe weather also includes having the essentials for survival. This includes nonperishable food, an excess of water, batteries, first-aid supplies and flashlights that aren’t your phone.
You should keep at least 72 hours worth of supplies because you never know how long you might have to shelter.
These kits should be kept in your designated safe room so that you can access them when you take shelter. By taking this extra step, you will be more prepared for the potential disasters that come from storms.Your Severe Weather Aftermath Checklist
After the extreme weather is over, you should take a few additional steps in order to stay prepared for the next event. Taking account of how your planning and strategy worked or didn’t work will allow you to improve it and stay ready.
Lastly, once it’s safe to exit the home with your family, take some time and check your property for damage.
While we hope that your home never suffers damage, it’s important that you know who to call when it does. Your local restoration professionals at SERVPRO of Van Nuys South have a trusted reputation with over 50 years of restoration experience. We provide service day and night so that we can be there immediately to start solving the problems.
Finally, after assessing your home for damage, it’s always good to go through your safety plan and look for ways to improve. Explore where things went wrong, or what things went right, and build on that for the next time you face extreme weather. Taking these steps, and calling your local experts, can help you stay safe and keep your home or business in working order
If you discover storm damage to your home or business, you can count on SERVPRO to handle the restoration. We’re here 24⁄7 to spring into action—get in touch with us today.
How Does Heavy Rain Cause Sewage Backup?
The reason that a sewer backup happens is that the city sewage lines are often overflowing with rain water after a storm
What Causes Sewage Back-Up When It Rains A Lot?
You were already worried about flooding from a heavy storm, but suddenly from the lower levels or basement of your building, you catch the tell-tale stench of contaminated water. You have a sewer backup, but how do backups happen after storms? How can you prevent your Van Nuys South, CA, sewer lines from flooding your building?
1. Too Much Rain Water
The reason that a sewer backup happens is that the city sewage lines are often overflowing with rain water after a storm. Because the sewage lines cannot contain any more water, they begin to back up into everything from sinks to bathtubs, and they can overflow with disturbingly odious contaminated water. Sometimes, the problem is mild, and sometimes, it can be severe enough to require evacuation of a building.
2. When Older Buildings Suffer
Older buildings are particularly vulnerable to more severe flood damage and backup from the sewer. Soil erosion and soil softening can make the foundations of older buildings more vulnerable, and the pipes often have less integrity. A backup can lead to a pipe bursting or can seep through weakened foundations to completely flood the basement level of a building.
3. Play It Safe
If you have contaminated water coming up through your drains, don’t try to brush it off. Do not try to use the faucets. Exit the building and immediately contact the city to let them know the city’s main sewer lines are compromised and backing up into your building.
4. Keep It Clean
One of your first priorities after dealing with sewer backup should be cleanup once the sewer mains have stopped overflowing. If you need to hire professionals to ensure sanitation, they may be able to provide you with more intensive options for deep cleaning and removing any contaminated water. Contaminated water can lead to mold growth, so be careful when entering the building after a sewage backup flood.
Garage Flood Removal Made Easy
If your business suffers flood damage after a storm, give SERVPRO a call. Our team of flood damage experts will restore it efficiently.
Getting Rid Of A Garage Flood Is Simple
Having a garage in your business building makes life easier for you and your employees. It gives you storage space for extra supplies, a place to park company vehicles to protect them from the weather in Lake Balboa, CA, and in general more square footage for operations. Unfortunately, these useful additions, like every other part of your business building, aren’t immune to flooding. Luckily, there are a few things you can do to get your garage water-free again in no time:
- Install a sump pump and other equipment beforehand
- Use a trash pump to remove water
- Call the pros for help
Installing a Sump Pump
There’s no cure like a bit of prevention, especially when it comes to taking care of your business building. Sump pumps act as a preventative measure for spaces that are likely to flood. These pumps are typically installed in special spaces in garage floors called “sump pits.” They’re used to prevent additions like these from flooding in the first place by pumping out invading water as needed to keep floors dry.
A trash pump is a piece of equipment that can be used to pump out massive amounts of water from a space whenever the need arises. These pumps aren’t just limited to liquid wastes, however. They also handle solid waste and other issues so you’re sure to get the full removal work you need. This equipment isn’t installed in a space beforehand like a sump pump is, being used as a form of treatment rather than prevention.
If you’re not comfortable running either a sump or trash pump on your own, you always have the option to call in the professionals to take care of your business’s garage flooding issue. They have both the equipment and knowhow to take care of the problem in a hurry, so you’ll get your space back as soon as possible.
Regardless of whether you live in an area with high flood risk or an area with practically no flood threat at all, it’s always a good idea to consider one of these options before inclement weather hits. That way you’re prepared whenever an emergency arises.
How Cities and States Protect Businesses from Flooding
If you don't know how to protect your business from storm and flood damage, call SERVPRO, we are always ready to help you.
Protecting Businesses From Flooding In Cities And States
Flooding causes high water levels that can contribute to significant property loss and business interruption. It is understandable that business owners want to understand the preventative measures cities may take to protect their investment. Below is a list of the most common tools used by states and cities to protect their populations.
1. Surge Barriers
Surge barriers may be one of the most common tools utilized to stop flooding. These barriers are usually made from steel and concrete and are built above sea levels. These floodgates are specifically designed to minimize the risk of flooding from surges.
Sluices are a type of floodgate designed to reduce the risk of flooding during extended storms and rains. These gates operate on a system of pressure activated locks. When storms create high water levels, the increased weight and pressure force the gates to open, draining the water into canals and other designated low-lying areas.
Dikes are likely the most common form of flood prevention. Dikes are equivalent to ditches and trenches. Either natural or human-made, these channels are below sea-level and are typically routed to other low-lying areas, so that when a flood occurs the water is directed away from populated areas where it can safely drain.
4. Emergency Managers
Beyond the constructed precautions cities take to protect citizens and businesses, most cities have an emergency manager and management office. The purpose of the emergency management team is to provide the population with the appropriate tools and knowledge to survive a disaster. Businesses can acquire a more personalized form of this planning by contacting an emergency and restoration professional in Valley Glen, CA.
High water is an intimidating element of storm season. The risk of property loss and business interruption may make many business owners uncomfortable operating in areas prone to flooding. Fortunately, areas prone to this type of disaster likely take appropriate preventative steps to protect their citizens and businesses from extensive damage.
5 Things to Do Before a Storm
For any storm damage in your business, SERVPRO is always ready to respond.
5 Things You Should Do Before a Storm
When a storm is heading your way, you want to do whatever you can to prepare for it. Of course, it is hard to predict how a storm will affect Lake Balboa, CA. Will you end up with flood water, hail damage or wind damage? Will the storm pass you by and leave you unscathed? Because there's no way to know the answer, you have to prepare for the worst possibilities.
1. Backup your data. Get your business ready for potential water damage by backing up your important business data. Put it on a secure server that will be unaffected by the upcoming storm.
2. Get surge protectors. Surge protectors may be able to help save your computers and other electronic equipment from certain issues. Investing in these protectors could save you some money in the long run. Of course, surge protectors may not help against flood water.
3. Protect windows. Storms with high winds can act as a threat to your windows and doors. You can put up storm shutters to better protect your windows. Putting sandbags near your windows could help keep your building from flooding.
4. Rearrange furniture. A flooded building will likely be full of unusable furniture. If you think you could have high waters, you should move your furniture to upper levels of your commercial building. If you only have a single level, consider making sturdy stacks.
5. Schedule a restoration inspection. While you may not have any damage to inspect now, you can schedule a restoration team prior to a storm striking Lake Balboa, CA. Chances are the restoration experts will get a lot busier after the storm, so you may get faster service by scheduling an inspection in advance.
You can't always be prepared when storms bring flood water. However, keeping these five tips in mind before a storm could help save you a major headache after the system has passed, and save your business as well.
How Flood Water Is Considered Black Water
SERVPRO was called out to this flooded commercial building in Pacoima, CA
How Flood Water Is Classified As Black Water
When water floods your Van Nuys South, CA, business, you may have to consider how safe that water is to maneuver through. Maybe you have items that you need to gather or save. If you have ever been through a flood, you may have heard the term black water. This is the third category of water and the most dangerous. Here is what you need to know about flood water and when to be concerned with contaminated water.
Gray and White Water
The first two categories of water are the cleanest and safest to wade through. Gray water may have cleaning or cooking agents in it. Often, dishwashers backing up or washers leaking lead to gray water floods. While not completely clean, this water can usually be reabsorbed into the ground. It’s not dangerous. Category one, on the other hand, is even cleaner and more pure. This is clean flood water.
The difference between black water and the other categories is the disease-causing pathogens that it can contain. This is because the water encounters human waste. This can be from the bathroom plumbing backing up, a sewage leak or even extensive flooding that will bring water from outside your business into the interior. Once the water is contaminated, you should not enter it without the proper equipment or without a professional to aid you in the process.
Floodwaters are not always contaminated. However, after a couple of days, they often are. If there is any risk from a sewer backup or if mold has already begun to grow, you could have a larger scale problem on your hand. When flooding is extensive outside and begins to enter the building, the water usually already was exposed to human waste.
When dealing with contaminated water, a professional is your safest bet. Never wait around when handling storm damage. Your business can lose money if the damage is not taken care of quickly.
Solar Panels and Extreme Weather
Solar panel damaged.
Extreme Weather and Solar Panels
As they gain popularity throughout Valley Glen, CA, and the nation because of their benefits to the environment and consumer budgets, solar panels are popping up on residential roofs and ground arrays in increasing numbers. A consideration in adding them to your home is whether panel damage can occur in the event of a storm.
Solar Panels are Resilient
The good news is that solar panels can withstand extreme weather and retain their structural and functional integrity. In fact, in a strong storm, roof damage would be the greater concern. Research that has spurred the development of the solar energy industry has created materials that can withstand many environmental challenges including the following:
- extremely high temperatures
- extremely low temperatures
- ultraviolet radiation
- electrical stress
- mechanical stress
- winds up to 140 mph
- direct hits from hail
Two extreme weather phenomena that pose the greatest threats of panel damage are hurricanes and hailstorms. However, the high volumes of wind-driven water in a hurricane have been documented to cause a perhaps surprising lack of damage; flexible racking designs enable the arrays to flex instead of break. Moreover, an unplanned test case in Golden, Colorado produced an astonishing result: a hailstorm that shattered car windows and dented vehicles broke a single panel in a 3,000 panel roof array at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory.
The expanding solar energy industry continues to evolve, and with it, the materials that make it a safe, reliable, nonpolluting and affordable alternative are subject to ongoing development. Durability, sustainability and reliability are the watchwords that propel exciting new advances in the generation of electricity without the negative impact of fossil fuels.
Consumers today have every reason to begin harnessing the power of the sun to keep their homes humming. Because panel damage is exceedingly unlikely, storm-related repairs are generally not a consideration in taking the leap to solar power.
FAQs About Diesel Engine Generators' Life Expectancies
Commercial power generator
FAQs About Diesel Engine Generators' Life Expectancies
Every business needs a generator that is going to work when it matters. With climate change bringing in more storms, it is necessary to be prepared. After all, you don't want your business to be without power after a storm hits. Therefore, you need to learn more about this important machine's life expectancy, setting you up to keep producing during disasters.
Does Maintenance Prolong Their Life?
Any piece of equipment needs maintenance. This crucial machine is no exception. If you want it to last longer, then you need to maintain it. This includes:
- Performing routine maintenance
- Exercising your machine regularly
Do They Last Longer Than Natural Gas Alternatives?
While diesel is the primary choice, a natural gas generator also has unique benefits. Diesel has traditionally been popular because these machines are more readily available. Meanwhile, natural gas machines are growing in popularity because they make it easier to store fuel and work in various conditions. However, diesel will still outlast natural gas, giving you an edge while you are waiting for the storm response professionals to get your power back on.
How Long Do They Last?
Because many factors impact life expectancy, there is no single answer. However, there are several trusted approximations. Since a diesel generator is cooled by water and runs at lower RPMs, it will last longer than a standard or natural gas option. If you maintain them properly, they can run for more than 20,000 hours before needing an overhaul. This is a fairly long time. Most commercial models last about 15 years before they need to be replaced or overhauled.
Does Size Matter?
Since diesel engines work at approximately 80% to 90% of their capacity, size does matter. You need to pick the right size machine for your business in Lake Balboa, CA if you want it to last longer and avoid problems.
Choosing the right machine is one way to avoid generator problems and improve the life expectancy of your equipment. Knowing these basic facts about them can give you an edge and help your business stay alive after a disaster.
Is Your Home Ready for Stormy Weather? | SERVPRO® of Van Nuys South
If you experience any property damage from spring storms, contact SERVPRO of Van Nuys South.
Does watching the snowy scenes from different parts of the country make you grateful to live in this part of California? If so, you probably aren’t alone. But for many of our friends and neighbors in other places, there’s a lot of gratitude now that spring is in the air.
Spring is a great time to tackle new projects. Many people find themselves planting flower gardens, deciding to grow vegetables or herbs, or just dreaming of painting their front door a different color.
While these projects add to the beauty of our homes, it’s a good idea to also look for options that help make our homes safer and keep them well-maintained. These steps are especially important when protecting your property from spring storms.
We can’t stop a thunderstorm from hitting our neighborhood. But we can do things to make our homes safer. Here’s what home maintenance experts recommend.
Get Your To-Do List Ready
Why not add some of these projects to your spring weather to-do list? You can knock several of them out over a weekend.
Get your roof ready for stormy weather. Don’t let the first time you realize your shingles are loose or your roof is leaking be when it starts storming. You can take steps to prevent this by checking your roof on a sunny Saturday. Look for missing shingles and signs of leaks. Then you can repair them.
Check and clean your gutters, if needed. Gutters that aren’t maintained can lead to water damaging your home. You should consider cleaning them every season.
Remove overhanging limbs. Having mature trees can add character to your yard. But don’t let them hang over your roof, garage or powerlines. Cut back limbs and branches that could cause damage.
If a fire, flood or any other cause damage to your home, you can always count on us for restoration assistance. We are available 24⁄7 in the event of an emergency. Contact us at any time to learn more about our restoration services and how we can help you.
Helping Valley Glen Businesses Rebuild After a Natural Disaster | SERVPRO® of Van Nuys South
SERVPRO of Van Nuys South knows the commercial restoration process inside and out. Here are some of our best tips in choosing the right restoration co
We have a wealth of experience helping businesses in Valley Glen and the surrounding areas to know that it’s possible to open again. It’s also possible to thrive and be more successful than before the disaster.
Our team has put together solid advice for dealing with the restoration process that comes after a natural disaster damages your business.
How You Can Move Forward After a Disaster
These tips can help you thrive after a natural disaster:
Your disaster plan is your guide. Think about how you can keep serving your customers if your business is damaged. You can even think about moving your business to a backup location. Some businesses can keep operating from a new location without serious disruption.
Partner with your insurance company. Be sure to take photographs of the damage and take inventory of everything that was damaged. If your insurer asks for documents, provide them as quickly as you can. You’ll want to work to keep this process running smoothly.
Stay in touch with your vital stakeholders. Communicate with with your suppliers, your employees, your customers and your wider community. Social media and email marketing lists can make this step easier.
Prioritize your physician and mental health. Dealing with a disaster is stressful. You can help yourself deal with the stress by eating a healthy diet, getting plenty of sleep and talking with people you trust about how you’re feeling.
Carefully choose your restoration partners. The restoration process is easier if you’re working with highly qualified people who use advanced technology to restore your business. Read reviews, talk with other business owners and check certifications to help you make a choice.
If a fire, flood or any other cause damages your business, you can always count on us for restoration assistance. We have crews who are available 24⁄7 in the event of an emergency. Contact us at any time to learn more about our restoration services and how we can help you.
Does Your Business Have a Proper Emergency Kit? | SERVPRO® of Van Nuys South
No one wants to consider the worst-case scenario happening, but for business owners, preparing for the worst is part of making sure your business is protected in any situation. It is important to make sure that you have considered how you will react to a disaster or emergency scenario, both to protect the longevity of your business and to protect your employees from harm.
Creating a business disaster plan should always be your first step, which includes assessing your overall risk level, creating a plan for evacuation and preparing the business itself to be as safe as possible in the event of a disaster—and one of the best ways to do this last bit is by assembling an emergency kit for the workspace.
Assembling An Emergency Kit for Your Business Workspace
Putting an emergency kit in the workspace is a great way to ensure you have the means for handling an emergency or disaster scenario so you can keep your employees safer. Ideally, an emergency kit should have enough food, water and medical supplies for several days at minimum, and it is wise to include comfort items such as emergency blankets and entertainment in case you must seek shelter overnight. Below is a checklist of the most necessary items that are wise to have on hand:
- One gallon of water per person, per day
- Non-perishable foods (and a can opener, if you have packed canned goods)
- Eating utensils
- An NOAA weather radio or other battery powered method to receive alerts
- Flashlights and extra batteries
- A first aid kit, including over the counter medication and wound care supplies
- Hand sanitizer and baby wipes
In addition to these items, if you have the room and the means, the following can be helpful:
- Emergency blankets for each person
- Plates, cups and napkins
- Cards, books or other games for entertainment
- Important documents such as your insurance policy and identification
- Cash or traveler’s checks
If your business is damaged in a disaster, you can depend on us to help you with all your restoration needs. We can help businesses of any size in any industry—contact us today to learn more about our services or to report damage.
Why We Advocate for Restoration Instead of Replacement | SERVPRO® of Van Nuys South
Have you sustained property damage and feeling overwhelmed? We are here to help, contact SERVPRO of Van Nuys South.
Experiencing damage to your home is always a difficult experience, regardless of the cause. However, if the damage was due to an emergency, the emotional impact can be extremely difficult to recover from as well. As you and your family work to rebuild, having a trusted restoration partner can make all the difference.
Restoring your home is something we do not take lightly, as we have seen firsthand what a traumatic experience that going through a disaster is for a family. Therefore, we do everything we can to put your items and your home back in the state they were before the damages, instead of recommending a liquidation of everything you own. This saves you time, money and hassle, ensuring that you can focus more on your recovery and let us handle the rest.
Let Us Focus on Restoration So You Can Focus on Recovery
We can help you save money on your insurance. Every insurance policy will be different, but you can often claim damages with your provider. For incidents such as water damage, this can be costly, leading to an increase in your premium. By focusing on restoration instead, we can help you keep the amount you have to claim with your insurance lower so you can save money.
We can protect your sentimental items. In the event of a disaster or emergency, a quick evacuation is often required to keep your family safe—meaning you will typically have to leave behind many of the objects you love. That is why we have invested in cutting-edge restoration technology, which allows us to restore even the most delicate of items such as family photographs and documents that have been damaged by fire or water.
We make sure your home feels like home again. After any sort of emergency scenario, the first time you re-enter your home will be an emotional one regardless of the restoration—but when you trust us, you can be sure you will recognize your house as your home when you return. We handle cosmetic issues such as painting, flooring and all the finishing touches that truly make a house feel like it is your home again.
If you have damages and are feeling overwhelmed, we are here to help. You can call us as soon as you need to in order to begin the restoration process. Contact us today to learn more.
Four Steps You Should Take If You Have A Leak
A roof leak from a major storm can cause serious long-term problems to your business in Van Nuys, CA if it is not identified and fixed immediately. If you suspect your building has a leak, act quickly to avoid additional damage.
There are four steps you should take if you have a leak, and calling for help from residential or commercial storm cleanup professionals can ensure these steps are completed in a safe and timely manner:
1. Identify the Location of the Leak.
The most important step to fixing a leaking roof is determining its location and source. Someone will need to climb up to the roof when the weather is dry and visually inspect the area above where the water is coming in through the ceiling. A roof leak is often spotted by searching for general signs of wear and tear, missing shingles, or loose flashing.
2. Determine the Cause of Damage.
Common culprits of a damaged roof include old mounting holes, clogged gutters, or a cracked chimney.
3. Repair the Roof.
Fixing the roof will stop additional water from coming into the building. Excess water can lead to additional damage to your business.
4. Inspect and Repair Additional Damage.
You will need to inspect any surrounding areas that need may repair. A professional can ensure that all wet materials are torn out and replaced and the affected area is dried and disinfected.
If left untreated, the damage could end up costing your business a hefty sum. Untreated leaks often lead to additional issues, including mold and mildew, structural damage, or even worse, potential fires if you experience any electrical problems where the water is seeping in.
It is recommended that you enlist the help of a residential or commercial storm cleanup service if you experience a roof leak. They are expertly trained in restoring roofs and ceilings that have been hit hard with storm damage. These professionals ensure that all risks are eliminated, keeping you and your business dry and safe.
Mitigate the Impact of Severe Weather on Your Family | SERVPRO® of Van Nuys South
SERVPRO of Van Nuys South is here to provide you with a rapid response. Contact us right away if you experience any storm damage.
Because of how frequently rain moves through the area, it is common to discount the impact that more severe storms can have. However, it is important to remember that any storm has the ability to cause damage, and it only takes one to create serious issues.
Fortunately, by planning in advance, you can significantly reduce the storm damage that you are likely to sustain. Here are some tips to do just that:
Reduce the Storm Damage You Are Likely to Sustain
Prepare your home as much as possible. There are some storm damages that just can’t be avoided, but one thing homeowners can do to reduce their chances is maintaining the trees around their yard by trimming back any loose branches that could become projectiles. To increase your comfort in the aftermath of a storm, adding a household storm generator to your efforts is advised so you can continue to use your electricity.
Create a family communications plan. Whenever your family is in one place, it is easy to make sure you are all safe. However, if one or more of you is away from home when severe weather strikes, it can be frightening if you do not know everyone is OK. We always recommend creating a communication plan so every family member knows to check-in, and the others will have the reassurance that they are safe.
Make sure your emergency kit is stocked. One of the smartest considerations for disaster preparedness is packing an emergency kit for your family. Putting everything you might need for severe weather in one place can ensure you are never without the necessities and your family can stay as comfortable as possible until you can readily access resources again.
Consider getting a weather radio. While our phones allow us to receive more information than ever before, they can fail us during a severe weather emergency when it matters most. Unreliable cell networks are common during severe storms, so we always advise people to have a weather radio or other secondary alert system packed in their emergency kit.
If your home is damaged by a storm, you can depend on us to take care of any damages. Contact us at any hour to report damage and receive a rapid response.
Before Severe Weather Is Predicted, Make Sure You’re Prepared | SERVPRO® of Van Nuys South
If your home has been impacted by storm damage, SERVPRO of Van Nuys South will respond quickly to assist in any repairs.
Understanding the impact of severe weather is the first step toward being prepared against it. Though many storms may cause no damage at all, they all have the potential to be dangerous and even deadly due to high winds, hail and lightning strikes that all thunderstorms can produce.
Making sure you are prepared in advance of the prediction of severe weather by listening to local weather alerts, having household emergency supplies handy and finding a reliable way to get weather alerts will help you have peace of mind and know you are as prepared as possible for whatever weather events occur.
Listen to Local Weather Alerts
The local weather alerts dispatched by officials are a great way to stay informed as long as you are aware of what commonly used terms mean in their system. When a thunderstorm watch is released, that is their way of telling people to stay tuned, as conditions make a storm possible but one is not actively occurring. For a thunderstorm warning, the concern is more immediate as there has been a storm spotted nearby.
Have Household Emergency Supplies Handy
Keeping household emergency supplies handy is always a good idea, as you never know what could happen, but especially concerning the threat of severe weather. Just having the essentials, such as household medical supplies, sources of light, food and water, can go a long way in keeping everyone comfortable if the power goes out. You should keep these supplies in a shelter-safe area of the home, such as a stairwell or hallway that is protected from the outside elements.
Find a Reliable Way to Get Weather Alerts
Though our cell phones are typically our main source of news, updates and anything else going on in the world, when it comes to severe weather, having a more reliable alert system is recommended. Weather radios are not dependent on cell reception or electricity, which can be spotty during a storm, and provide you with updates directly from the weather experts regarding the current situation.
If your home has been impacted by storm damage, we are here for you. You can contact us 24⁄7 to get a quick response to your home’s damages.
Have Storm Damage to Your Home? Give Us a Call | SERVPRO® of Van Nuys South
SERVPRO of Van Nuys South is your Damage Restoration expert. If you experience any storm damage call us right away.
Storm damages are a common occurrence, but if they are severe, they can be devastating. In 2018, homeowners filed for approximately $2 billion in storm-related damages to their homes, and storm-related claims are a leading cause of insurance filings.
Knowing what to do in advance in case storm damage occurs to your home is one of the best ways to prepare. That is why we are here to tell you about the services we offer and how you can count on us to get your household back on track following storm damage.
What’s Included in the Storm Restoration Process
A Complete Approach to Storm Damage
Every damage is unique, which is why we approach everything with a holistic attitude. Treating structural damage, moisture buildup and mold growth in unison is the only way to achieve full restoration, which is why we make sure we are fully certified to do all of this work on your home. This way you can be certain that all of your damage will be handled.
A Team of Technicians Who Care
Our technicians’ training is something we take very seriously, which is why we invest heavily in making sure they have access to educational materials throughout their career. From their initial training to educate them about the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification guidelines to the seminars and ongoing classes we provide, we make sure that they are fully educated and ready to take on all kinds of damage.
An Adequate Amount of Resources
Because we have the SERVPRO® brand behind us, we have access to national resources when the damages to our community are severe. Whether we need extra equipment, additional workforce or other support, other locations are ready and willing to band together and ensure everyone in the area receives the restoration they need.
A Trustworthy Reputation
We have been working on restoration in the community for many years and have unfortunately seen many companies try to take advantage of those who have sustained damage after a storm. Because we are known leaders in the restoration industry, you do not have to be concerned with the legitimacy of our business—instead, you can be certain you will receive professional, quality work.
If you have experienced storm damage or want to learn more, you can call us 24⁄7 for more details.
Reducing the Danger a Disaster Poses to Your Business | SERVPRO® of Van Nuys South
Having a disaster plan in place is crucial for any business. SERVPRO of Van Nuys South is your full service commercial restoration company.
Natural disasters will always pose dangers to areas they impact, but through careful planning and consideration, small business owners can reduce the risks they are subjected to. Natural disasters continue to occur more frequently in all parts of the world, but being prepared is the best way to ensure your business is well-poised to recover fully from one.
When making your plans, considering both what to do during the disaster and how to pick up the pieces left behind is important to the restoration and reopening process. Recovering quickly is one of the most vital things for business owners to focus on, so they can get back to business faster.Disaster Preparedness Tips for Small Business Owners
1. Double-Check Your Insurance
Though a business insurance policy is designed to help you in case of damages to your commercial property, there are some things related to a disaster that your policy may not cover. Discuss the details of your policy with your agent and inquire about whether you need additional coverage added on to your policy in order to fully protect your assets.
2. Create Your Action Plan
When it comes to safety, planning for the moment a disaster strikes is one of the safest things that anyone can do. Knowing where to seek shelter and what routes to take if an evacuation order is presented is important, as is making sure your location has emergency supplies sufficient for if officials order you to stay put. Food, water and a well-stocked first-aid kit are all good items to keep on hand and in an accessible place.
3. Rehearse Drills and Prepare Staff
If you have staff on-site, it is wise to include them in your disaster plans as well. Train staff on the emergency and evacuation procedures, and be sure to set aside time to do workplace drills in order to help staff conceptualize what should be done in a disaster scenario.
4. Choose a Restoration Company to Work With
The restoration company you choose to work with for your commercial repairs is one of the most vital aspects of your entire recovery plan. This is the company entrusted with getting your business back up and running by working both quickly and effectively to do a quality job. Choosing this company ahead of time will do wonders for peace of mind, as you can do thorough research without feeling the pressure to decide right away.
If you need to pick a commercial restoration company that’s right for you, call us today! We can tell you all about what sets our process apart.
Ways That Floods Are Damaging to Homes | SERVPRO® of Van Nuys South
Do you have water damage or flooding? Let SERVPRO of Van Nuys South guide you through your water-related issues.
Once a chief concern only for low-lying areas, flooding has become a more common occurrence around the country, causing more and more homeowners to be concerned.
While floods can happen for many reasons and cause various types of damage, we have treated an abundance of flood-damaged homes and can help you know what to prepare for.Ways That Floods Can Lead to Damage
Foundational Damage. The ground below a home’s foundation is generally sound, but when floodwaters are introduced, it can quickly become unstable. As soil becomes oversaturated with water, it can begin to swell, causing the foundation above it to shift irregularly and cause damage.
Drywall Damage and Mold. The drywall that has been exposed to flood waters will typically have to be replaced due to mold growth concerns. Not all drywall will show water damage, but it is best to err on the side of caution to prevent mold damage.
Insulation Saturation. A home’s insulation is generally protected via the drywall, but if drywall becomes soaked through, it can easily become oversaturated with water as well. Not only is this something that can stop the insulation from being effective, but it can also lead to an increased chance of mold within the walls.
Temporary Frame Swelling. A house frame made of solid lumber is a sturdy design and one that is typically impervious to water damage. Though swelling may occur and is normal, the structural integrity of the frame will generally remain intact, requiring only thorough drying and cleaning to be restored.
Appliance Ruining. Every appliance manufacturer constructs products differently, but some appliances contain insulation that is at-risk for damages after a flood. However, because they are all different, it is best to get a professional inspection to determine what is safe for continued use.
Furniture Damage. The materials furniture is made of is generally the best indicator of how well it will weather a flood—soft materials such as upholstery and even composite wood can become irreparably damaged, but pieces of a sturdier construction (such as acrylic or metal) will generally be alright following a thorough cleaning.
If your home has been affected by a flood, we’ll be here to help you! Give us a call 24⁄7 to learn about our certified flood restoration process.
Rebuilding After flood Damage Hits
Flooding necessitates rebuilding operations in affected homes for several reasons. If flood damage occurs because of severe weather such as a hurricane, various forces such as wind and fast-moving water can teardown different sections of the property necessitating rebuilding as part of the restoration. Exposure to water also leads to deterioration of materials this necessitating removal.
Proper rebuilding after flood damage in your Van Nuys home is only possible if you identify all affected areas before starting the process primarily when water is the leading cause of deterioration. Leaving water in concealed areas can force you to redo the process or lead to extreme problems such as mold. Our SERVPRO technicians use a wide range of moisture detection tools to establish all wet areas. The common ones include:
- Thermal imaging cameras
- Moisture sensors
- Moisture meters
The rebuilding process can pose risks such as injury to the people involved or further damage to the structure, especially when tearing down deteriorated materials. For example, it is possible to cut power cables or plumbing lines when opening up concealed areas such as walls and floors. Our SERVPRO technicians consult building plans to establish the position of utility lines. We also use different tools for different tasks, including rubber hammers, to minimize the chances of unintended damages and injuries.
When flooding only affects a section of the property, there is a need for containment to limit the spread of debris and even fumes from finishing products such as paint. If such materials are left to spread uncontrollably, the restoration process can take longer than expected. Our SERVPRO technicians use different containment approaches. We can place plastic sheets over air vents, doors, and windows when doing controlled demolition. We also have heavy-duty plastic bags to hold materials such as carpets removed from the structure.
Flooding incidents can leave a wide range of physical damages in your Van Nuys or Greater San Fernando Valley home. Call SERVPRO of Van Nuys South at (818) 780-7111 to help with the rebuild. We're Faster To Any Size Disaster.
What to Check Following a Lightning Strike
A lightning bolt arcing across the sky serves as a perfect reminder of how powerful a thunderstorm is. By causing damage to electrical systems, appliances and even a home’s structure, a lightning strike is a force to be respected.What Creates Lightning?
Every thunderstorm is electrically charged, which is how lightning and thunder are developed. When the storm opts to expend some of this energy, it creates a bolt of lightning, which makes shock waves that we hear as thunder when it strikes across the clouds.
The atmosphere does not make a good insulator, so lightning striking toward the ground will often travel through an object to travel more efficiently—and this is why the damages can be so severe.A Home Inspection Checklist for After a Lightning Strike
There are a few ways lightning will typically cause damage to a home—and knowing what to look for after a storm will go a long way.
1. Check your electrical system. Lightning can ignite a building on impact, as bolts regularly reach around 500,000 degrees. However, it can also cause significant damage to wires, creating the potential for an electrical fire in the future. The local fire department can often test for hot spots and identify areas that could be replaced after a strike.
2. Check your electronics. Lightning carries a powerful electrical charge that can overload the electronics when it strikes a home. Always use surge protectors in outlets, and check electronics after a storm to ensure operation.
3. Check the home’s structure. As powerful as shock waves are, at close range it is not uncommon for them to cause serious damage to a home. By cracking foundation or shattering glass, they can create severe damage when lightning has struck nearby. Doing a visual inspection of the home will let you know if there are any problems to address.
If your home has been affected by storm damages or lightning-related fires, give us a call today! We are experts in damage cleanup and can restore your damage quickly.
Learning About Damage Done by Thunderstorms
As warmer weather moves in during the spring and summer, it brings with it the chance for more fun in the sun. But it also brings with it the increased risk of thunderstorms.
Do you have a good understanding of these storms and why and how they form?
Here in the United States, there are typically around 100,000 thunderstorms per year with 10% of those that are considered severe. This is just a small portion of the estimated 16 million thunderstorms each year that occur worldwide.
The formation of a thunderstorm requires certain conditions, which include moisture and rising unstable air that is accompanied by a “lifting” mechanism caused by either hills or mountains that force air to rise, or where warm/cold or wet/dry air bump together, causing a rising motion.
Every thunderstorm has three main life stages—when it forms, when it matures and when it dissipates. It’s during the mature phase that most danger occurs, including things like lightning and hail.
There are many different dangers that result from storms, but one of the greatest risks is debris flying around as a result of high winds.
Wind speeds during severe thunderstorms can gust up over 57.5 mph. That is more than enough to createchaos and damage to your property.
These items could turn into dangerous projectiles in your yard:
- Tree branches
- Lawn furniture
- Garbage cans
- Potted plants
Be mindful of this fact and make sure items in your yard are secured if there is a severe thunderstorm threat.
Thunderstorms can also produce the following damage besides wind damage:
Lightning damage. When lightning strikes a building, it can surge through the wiring, damaging appliances and even increasing the risk of electrical fire.
Tornado damage. While not common in all areas of the United States, these intense storms bring winds up to 200 mph, and all the danger you’d think would accompany such intense winds.
Hail damage. Did you know that according to NOAA, the cost of hail damage can reach $1 billion a year?
Flood damage. During the summer especially, an intense amount of rain can often fall within a small amount of time. This makes it difficult for the rain to saturate into the earth, causing flash flooding.
If a thunderstorm has resulted in damage to your home or business, know that the team at SERVPRO® of Van Nuys South is available 24⁄7 to help with cleanup and restoration.
Spring Weather Can Be Unpredictable. Are You Ready? | SERVPRO® of Van Nuys South
We have entered into the spring season, which means we also need to be aware of the weather Mother Nature may choose to send our way.The Highs and Lows of Spring Weather
Spring, of course, means longer days and more sunshine, but unfortunately, it also means the threat of severe weather throughout the country. It’s an unpredictable season, which means the weather may change at moment’s notice.
The unstable temperatures of spring are the cause for the changing weather. They can go from warm to cold in just an hour, and that temperature change can result in extreme weather changes as well.
Thunderstorms become a more common occurrence during spring and are what can cause severe weather. A thunderstorm can occur whenever warm, moist air collides with cool, dry air, which is most common in the spring and summer.
In a past study, one of the causes for natural catastrophe losses in the U.S. for 2017 were severe thunderstorms—and they were responsible for some of the costliest losses. Out of 50 events, there were 85 fatalities and an estimated total of $25.4 billion in overall losses.
Those storms can bring with them the threat of flooding, high winds and even tornadoes if the conditions are right. It has been found that in modern history, 10% of all violent tornadoes have occurred in March, with April, May and June taking the top spots at 30%, 24% and 15% respectively.How to Be Prepared
Weather prediction is tricky, and while we may not be able to predict the weather with 100% accuracy, forecasters have the tools available to forewarn us that there is the possibility of severe weather. Advanced warnings, along with the right preparation, can greatly improve overall safety for your family.
Here are some things you can do to your home to prepare for the chance of severe weather:
- Clear out your home’s gutters, drains and downspouts.
- Trim trees of precarious limbs or branches that could break off in a storm.
- Secure or store outdoor belongings if severe weather is in the forecast.
Having an emergency kit on hand is always advised. These kits should include the following:
- Battery-operated flashlight and NOAA weather radio, with extra batteries for both
- Emergency evacuation or shelter plans
- Important personal info, like telephone numbers of neighbors, family and friends, insurance and property info, numbers for the utility companies, and medical info
- A first-aid kit with things like non-latex gloves, adhesive bandages, tweezers, sterile gauze pads, aspirin packets, adhesive cloth tape and scissors
- 3–5 day supply of bottled water and nonperishable food
- Personal hygiene items
- Blankets or sleeping bag
Despite its unpredictability, there is one thing that always remains true of the spring weather season: It always happens. If your home or business is damaged in a storm, you can depend on SERVPRO® of Van Nuys Southto get the cleanup and restoration process started fast.
Tornado Safety Tips for Everyone | SERVPRO® of Van Nuys South
With springtime comes unpredictable weather—and knowing this means you should always be prepared for the chance of severe thunderstorms that lead to perfect conditions for tornadoes.
April and May have, historically, been reported to have the highest occurrences of tornadoes at 30% and 24% respectively, which means we are now in the midst of tornado season all throughout the whole United States. Included in this blog are some tips and information on tornadoes that can help keep your family prepared for the worst possible scenario.These Conditions Can Cause Tornadoes
Severe thunderstorms, especially those known as “supercells,” are responsible for the roughly 1,200 tornadoes that occur in every state of the U.S. each year.
The formation of a tornado begins when changes in wind speed and direction create a horizontal spinning effect within a storm cell. This is then tipped vertical by rising air moving up through the thunderclouds.
You will most likely not see the tornado’s signature funnel cloud at first because it starts out transparent, but that funnel will become visible as water droplets from the storm’s moist air condense or when dust and debris are picked up.
A typical tornado can grow to be 660 feet wide and will move at 10 to 20 miles per hour, although larger and faster storms have been observed. Hail and intense winds of over 200 mph can accompany tornadoes.
Ideal conditions for tornadoes occur during the late afternoon hours in the spring and summertime as the air becomes unstable in the cooling temperatures. However, remember that tornadoes can occur anytime and anywhere and no state in our country is exempt.Safety Tips
Get to know the difference between a tornado watch and tornado warning. A watch is issued when the conditions are favorable for tornadoes, while a warning is issued when a tornado has been reported by spotters or indicated by radar.
A tornado watch alerts you to be aware that the weather conditions are unstable and could change, but a warning for your area means you should take immediate action to find safe shelter, especially if you are in the path of the tornado.
Shelter options include:
- Underground options like a basement or storm shelter.
- The lowest part of your home, in an area that is away from outside walls, doors and windows. Interior closets and bathrooms can be ideal options.
- If you are outside, try to get to a sturdy building. Mobile homes and trailers are not a safe option.
- If on the road and no building access is available, do not get under an overpass or bridge. Instead, find a low, flat location and use your arms to protect your head and neck.
Equip your home shelter with working flashlights, a battery-powered weather radio and extra fully charged batteries. Also, when you are taking shelter in your home, use furniture items like couch cushions, mattressesor blankets to keep your head and neck covered and protected.
If you are caught out on the road during a tornado, NEVER try to outrun it! Instead, seek shelter or exit your vehicle and lay flat on the ground covering your head and neck.
Tornadoes leave devastation and chaos in their paths. While meteorologists and weather services can provide some advanced warning to potential threats, tornadoes can still occur with little to no warning at all.
If your home or business has been damaged by a tornado, know that SERVPRO® of Van Nuys South is ready and waiting to jump into action and get cleanup and restoration of your property underway.
3 Causes of Storm Damage in Hurricanes
Pacific hurricanes are not as common as on the Atlantic Coast, but they have been known to happen. Just in August, Hawaii was devastated by Hurricane Lane. California and the mild Los Angeles climate may be relatively safe from hurricanes, but if you were to travel to the East Coast, the Gulf Coast, or even Hawaii then the odds go up and it’s important to be prepared.
While hurricanes often get the most coverage, they are only one of ten common types of storm in the United States. The others are hurricanes, tornadoes, floods, snow storms, hail storms, thunderstorms, lightning storms, tropical storms, ice storms and Derecho storms.
Of the ten, Derecho storms are actually considered to be rare. Have you heard of a Derecho storm before? This storm occurs when several large storms create one giant storm that reaches speeds of 58 miles per hour (at least) and crosses 250 miles.
Hurricanes, even if more common in some areas than others, can reach far past the coast they occur on.Hurricane Sandy had a reach of over 20 states.
Since hurricanes cause so much damage, it’s vital to be familiar with the damage they cause even if they aren’t common to California.So, how do hurricanes cause so much damage?First, by wind.
Wind accompanied by hurricanes can be linked to most damage caused by these storms. In some cases, the wind is so strong that it forms tornadoes. Wind speed commonly ranges between 74 - 155 miles per hour, strong enough to cause intense wreckage. The sturdiest of structures, even trees, are in danger from this kind of wind. Storm winds hoist up and fling debris of all sizes and shapes, which causes further destruction.Second, by storm surge.
Have you heard of a “wall of water” caused by hurricanes? As a hurricane rages toward the coast, its winds are pushing water with it, disrupting the normal flow of tides. The winds push so much water toward the shore that it amasses high above the predicted tide level and it surges onto the shore and farther inland. As the water rushes inland, it has nowhere to drain and causes flooding. Storm surge also creates strong currents and the weight of the water is so heavy that it can cause severe damage.Third, by flood.
As mentioned, storm surge is primary reason for floods during hurricanes. But this happens primarily on the coast. Hurricanes can cause floods 100 miles out from where the hurricane lands. This is because a hurricane is so powerful as to affect other weather systems, creating excess precipitation that is far ranging. This heavy excess rain often overwhelms an area and causes floods when it can’t drain properly.
Storm damage, caused by hurricanes or flood or otherwise, can be severe and difficult to clean up on your own. Call SERVPRO® of Van Nuys South for expert water damage restoration services.