Water Damage Claim Tips
There are many ways to prevent water damage from occurring, but some just cannot be predicted beforehand. Here are a few tips on ways to help protect your home and what to do when you are filing a water damage claim.
- File a Claim Quickly – The quicker you file a claim, the quicker you can get the ball rolling with your adjuster, the quicker you can get your life back to normal. Be sure to know what your policy covers! Another good tip would be to review your existing policy and talk to your local agent to make sure you understand all the provisions.
- Record Proof of Water Damage – Take pictures and videos of your water damage, preserve any broken parts that may have caused or allowed water damage to take place. This will assist in providing evidence for your insurance claim. Do NOT throw away or move anything (as much as possible) until an adjuster comes to inspect the property.
- Secure Valuables and Prevent Additional Damage – Now that your insurance has been informed, now prevent additional damage to your property! Take your surviving valuables to a safe and DRY location to keep them in good condition.
- Document All Damages – Once you have secured all undamaged valuables, you will really be able to focus on which items are damaged or not. Keep a record of what has been damaged, for your own personal records and for insurance. This will help you accurately keep track of what you own, age, current condition, how much they cost, and the value they still carry.
- Do NOT Make Permanent Repairs – Do not make permanent repairs to your property without approval from the insurance company. If you start reconstruction work without their approval, you will not be paid for those repairs. Insurance claims, especially large ones, always take time and need a lot of patience to work through before settling. You want to wait until your insurance gives you information to make sure the restoration costs are covered.
If you have a water damage, call SERVPRO of Chesapeake South at 757-523-9700 today. We are here to help!
Admin Day at SERVPRO
After over a year of uncertainty and distance, Team Bahen was thrilled to welcome all their fabulous office staff back to the office full time.
With everyone still working from home on Administrative Professionals Day, Management put their heads together on how they could show their appreciation to each team member for when they came back. They organized a personal lunch with all the office staff, sharing tables with new employees who they may have not met yet due to COVID, as well as personalized bags and beautiful flower arrangements gifted to each team member! This was a great way for our team to come together and learn about their new team members as well as catch up with those they have not seen in person in a while!
Thank you to all of our Administrative Professionals within Team Bahen, we couldn’t ask for a better group of women to keep this office running!
What Water Damage is Covered By Insurance
It's likely if you own a home that you may run into a water damage issue. It's one of the most common causes of home insurance claims and according to the Insurance Services Office (ISO), water damage claims are the second largest frequent insurance claim, following wind and hail claims.
It can be confusing know what is covered when water damage occurs in your home, but we've gathered the facts to help you understand the basics.Water damage that is covered:Sudden or Accidental DischargeSewer backup or water backup Overflow
Water Damage that may NOT be covered:
- gradual damage
- wear and tear
- ignored maintenance
- flood unless you purchase a separate flood insurance policy
It is always recommended to speak to your insurance provider to find out exactly what is covered in your policy so you can fully understand your coverage plan. We also recommend that you keep up with the maintenance in your home and take care of problematic issues so you are more likely covered in case of a water damage. SERVPRO of Chesapeake south is always here to help 24/7.
SERVPRO Spring Cleaning
The time of year has come for your annual Spring Cleaning! During the past year we have lived through a pandemic and many of us have stayed inside our homes more than we ever have. Now it may be more important than ever to give your home some extra attention with the accumulation of dust and junk.
The thought of tackling your spring cleaning checklist may be daunting, but check out this easy list to get you started:
- clean out fridge/freezer - wipe down the inside
- organize Tupperware drawers
- clean out and wipe down inside of cabinets
- vacuum and mop floors
- bring out spring/summer clothing and pack up winter clothes
- straighten up/organize laundry area and clean lint trap and behind washer/dryer
- purge clothing you no longer wear to donate or give away
- wash all your sheets and bedding
- rotate and flip mattress
- replace or wash pillows
- vacuum couches and chairs
- change air filters
- wash windows inside/outside
- inspect smoke alarm and fire extinguishers
- clean blinds
- dust ceiling fans and baseboards
- clean out medicine cabinets and organize storage closets
To get a deep, professional cleaning of your home, call SERVPRO of Chesapeake South at 757-523-9700.
What Are Ice Dams and How To Prevent Them
If you are a homeowner, you most likely heard of ice dams. During the icy and snowy winter months, ice dams are notorious for wreaking havoc on the unsuspecting person's home, causing water damage to their roofs and attics.
Ice dams form on the eaves of roofs from the build up of ice and snow after a storm. Eventually the ice and snow will melt and form a puddle of water that could penetrate your roof, slip under the shingles and enter your home.
How to Prevent Ice Dams
- seal and insulate your duct system
- make sure your attic and roof are properly insulated so the heat will not melt the precipitation on the roof
- clear out gutters for easy flow of water
- knock down snow build up and icicles that form on roof and gutters
- inspect your roof before the ice and snow storm for leaks and possible weak spots
Follow these steps to ensure you are taking the proper precautions when it comes to keep your home warm and dry. If you experience a water intrusion, call the professionals at SERVPRO of Chesapeake South at 757-523-9700.
Commercial Property Maintentance
Commercial Property Maintenance
As a commercial property owner, being proactive with the maintenance to the building can help prevent damage to your property, which in turn can help save you time and money. Regular maintenance of your commercial property may also help with the inevitable property insurance claim. Weather can affect the exterior and the interior of the building structure. These are a few property maintenance suggestions.
Roof and Exterior
Wind, snow and rain can impact a building’s roof and exterior. Walking the property and being on the lookout for standing water or leaks from roofs and gutters is important. Look for chipped paint, siding dents, damaged, cracked or leaking windows, foundation cracks, roof leaks, and clogged gutters. Any of these should be photographed, reported and repaired. If these issues are left unresolved for long term, can lead to more serious problems including foundation erosion and more.
Landscaping and Irrigation
Harsh winds, rain and snow can damage plants and limbs, especially on boxwoods, small shrubs and ornamental trees. Mulching, trimming broken limbs, pruning back plants, and cleaning debris is suggested to prepare for spring and new growth. Inspect irrigation systems for damage and for proper drainage in order to be ready for the dry summer season.
Temperature changes suggest that the commercial facility’s mechanical systems should be regularly inspected and maintained. The replacement of air filters, flushing of water heaters, and checking carbon monoxide detectors and sprinkler and fire suppression systems should be done before summer or winter arrives.
Call to learn more about our Emergency Ready Profile for commercial businesses at SERVPRO of Chesapeake South 757-465-9700.
How To Prepare For Winter Storm
This is an insulated faucet cover that can be purchased at your local hardware store.
Tips for Preparing your Home for Winter Weather
Some people may never take the necessary steps to prepare your home for the winter storms and it could end up costing you big. Follow these steps below to be fully prepared to winter weather havoc.
- Keep cabinet doors open during cold spells. This allows warm air to circulate around pipes.
- Keep a slow trickle of water flowing through faucets, especially if the pipes for faucets run through unheated or non-insulated areas of your home.
- Consider shutting off outdoor faucets. Find the shut-off valve in the basement or crawl space and turn it to "off."
- If you follow the previous step, then open the outdoor faucet to help ensure it drains completely and the inner valve is shut off.
- Place insulated faucet covers over your outdoor faucets to prevent frozen pipes.
- Ensure gutters are clean and secure. Leaves and debris accumulate, causing a damming effect on gutters, which could lead to roof problems and water damage.
- Inspect your roof for weak areas to avoid heavy snow and precipitations from leaking into your home.
- Proper maintenance of your furnace can help reduce the risk of puffbacks.
Protect Your Home From Water Damage
You know that a flood in your bathroom or a flood in your attic from a water heater leak may be expensive to repair. The are ways to help prevent those disasters and to protect against water damage.
- Replace old pipes. Home piping usually has a life span of 50 to 80 years. If yours are older, it’s a good idea to ask a plumber for an inspection. PVC pipes may need to be replaced every 25-40 years.
- Inspect your water heater. Water heaters usually need to be replaced every 10 years.
- Update your windows and doors. Watertight options are available with new doors and windows. Wood windows should be cleaned, repainted and stained every so often. Cracks should be resealed, and old glazing compounds should be replaced as needed.
- Replace washing machine supply hoses. As part of a proactive maintenance plan, replace every 3 to 5 years.
- Regularly inspect your roof. Look for loose or missing shingles, or any sign of damage. While up there, inspect your gutters to make sure leaves and debris have been removed and that the drain spout is properly attached.
When you need a water damage cleanup, call SERVPRO® of Chesapeake South at 757-523-9700.
Winter Storm Forecast Terms
With the cold weather quickly moving in it is likely that you may have already heard many of these winter weather terms. But, do you know what they mean for you, your family and your home or business. Here is a list of the 9 common terms you are likely to hear this winter.
Nor’easter - This is a term that we here on the east coast are widely familiar with. A Nor’easter gets it name from the northeasterly winds that batter the coast when these storms pass through. Nor’easters do not always produce snow, however when weather conditions permit, rain and wind can quickly become wind, snow and ice. Most nor’easters last only a few days, however their impacts can be significant leaving behind millions of dollars of damage.
Clipper - A clipper is a small, fast-moving storm system that forms in or around southern Canada or the upper Midwestern United States and moves towards the East Coast. Clippers generally only drop a few inches or so of snow, however there have been clipper storm systems in which adequate moisture is available and snowfall totals can far exceed what was originally forecast.
Polar Vortex - A polar vortex is a large and persistent circulation in the upper-levels of the atmosphere that wraps around the far northern latitudes of the earth. A polar vortex acts like an atmospheric barrier that can keep bitterly cold air confined to the Arctic Circle. When the polar vortex is disrupted and the circulation breaks down, parts of the polar vortex can dip south and allow that frigid arctic air to spill deep into the United States for a few days.
Bombogenesis - While this may sound like a made up term a bombogenesis, or bomb cyclone is a very real meteorological event that occurs in conjunction with a nor’easter in which a low pressure system undergoes a drastic drop in air pressure (24 millibars or more in 24 hours or less). The result is a large scale storm that affects large portions of the east coast for several days and bringing about blizzard like conditions for some areas.
Squall Line - A squall line is a heavy line of precipitation that’s usually accompanied by gusty winds. Sudden and heavy snow can cause roads to quickly become dangerous for travel. Reduced visibility is likely and the roads will become slick with near white out conditions traffic accidents are inevitable.
Freezing Rain - Freezing rain forms when a snowflake falls through a layer of above-freezing air high above the ground. The snowflake completely melts into a raindrop and falls back into subfreezing air near the surface. Once the raindrop hits the ground (or another surface) it instantly freezes leaving behind a heavy layer of ice making travel almost impossible, and carries the potential to break tree limbs and cause power lines to fail.
Sleet - Sleet is similar to freezing rain in that goes through a melting and then refreezing process. Sleet feels like hail and accumulates like snow, but it can freeze solid not longer after falling creating a stubborn slab of ice that can be hard to shovel or plow through, often these attempts to remove the ice can cause damage to sidewalks, roadways and driveways.
Graupel - Graupel is a soft snowflake that is more comparable to sleet rather than snow. It does not accumulate and can also be compared to the frost that you see on the grass in the mornings. It is essentially a freezing fog and generally causes no issues.
Flash freeze - A flash freeze occurs when the temperature drops very quickly not long after it rains, causing the water on roads and sidewalks to freeze in a short amount of time. Most common after a powerful storm in which the temperature quickly drops (40 °F or more) in just a few hours. Flash freezes are dangerous because they create black ice, which makes travel unsafe.
We here at SERVPRO Chesapeake South want you and your family to be safe this winter season. Always check the forecast before leaving home and be sure to add a Winter Car Emergency Kit to all family vehicles. Review or create your business's Emergency Response Plan and be safe when traveling on busy roadways.
Fire Damage, Estimate, and insurance
You may be feeling uncertain and unsure of the next step after the fire trucks have left your home. Depending on the severity of the fire, your belongings are most likely suffering from not only fire and smoke damage, but also extensive water damage from the firefighting efforts. The restoration of your home and the estimation of your fire loss begins when you call a professional fire damage cleanup & restoration company.
Our SERVPRO Professionals in Electronics, Structure, and Contents Restoration arrive to conduct pretests, while inspecting the property to determine the extent of the fire damage and the scope of needed cleaning, restoration, and repairs. Initially our professional experts conduct the following scope to provide you and your insurance company with our recommendations for fire restoration and repairs.
- The materials, and items affected by smoke or fire and the proper method for cleaning;
- If your personal belongings need to be relocated while your house is being restored
- The areas that were not affected by soot and odor and protect those areas as soon as possible to avoid contamination
- If the smoke residues are cleanable
- Conduct a complete inventory of items that are damaged beyond repair as a complete inventory is invaluable
- The amount of time needed to perform the cleanup with the most effective cleaning methods
Once our estimate is approved by your insurance company, the restoration process begins. Our office staff will be in communication with you and your insurance company throughout the entire claim process.
Call us for fire, smoke or soot damage cleanup & restoration, SERVPRO of Chesapeake South, 757-523-9700.