Recent Storm Damage Posts

What happens if a storm floods your property?

9/20/2021 (Permalink)

Interior of Home flooded by storm damage Immediate response vital to returning your property to the condition.

At SERVPRO of NW Charlotte, we understand that both storm damage and flood damage can be overwhelming. Immediate response is critical, and the emergency service that you choose for cleanup and restoration is vital to returning your property to the condition "Like it never even happened." SERVPRO professionals respond faster to any disaster and have the skilled training and specialized equipment to provide an effective and efficient action plan.

Where to Start with Storm Damage

Knowing what to do at the onset of flood damage is critical to receiving immediate response. Your immediate steps will help determine your property’s further protection and reduce the potential for irreversible damage.

If you’re wondering where to begin, follow this checklist for your steps of immediate action.

  • Turn off electrical power and any natural gas sources including propane tanks. If you smell gas or feel that there may be a gas leak, turn off the main gas valve, open all windows, and leave the house immediately.
  • Call 911. Report the flood damage to the fire and public safety authorities in addition to the local gas company.

  • Contact an emergency service for cleanup and restoration. The professionals you choose matter. The quicker you call SERVPRO of NW Charlotte, the quicker we can respond. Our professionals will arrive armed with specialized equipment ranging from an infrared camera to uncover hidden moisture to robust water extraction equipment that quickens the drying process.

  • Relocate important documents. Water can destroy sensitive documents. Only if you can do so safely, move your important documents as quickly as possible to a safe and dry location. If you need assistance, SERVPRO can ensure that your documents and personal belongings are secure.

  • Remain evacuated from the damaged area. To remain safe from potential hazards and to help expedite restoration efforts, we recommend that you and others stay out of the damaged and restoration areas. Upon being given the all-clear to return, adhere to the advice of your trusted professionals about how to return safely.

When a storm strikes and floodwaters rise, other emergency response companies may be overrun. However, SERVPRO of NW Charlotte, Lincoln County, Southern and NE Gaston County can access the resources, as well as Disaster Recovery Teams when and if necessary.

We stand ready 24/7 to respond to your emergency, so please don’t hesitate. Call us today.

Mold Issues caused by Storm Damage

9/20/2021 (Permalink)

Man inspecting rotted wood with mold on roof in Charlotte NC To ignore mold issues caused by storm damage.

Whether you’ve suffered storm related water damage from a typical storm, flood, or hurricane, mold and mold remediation is an important topic to address. 

To understand the importance of mold remediation and why SERVPRO of NW Charlotte should be your go-to resource, it is important to understand the quick and dirty (literally!) of mold.

Did you know the following mold facts?

  • Mold can start growing in as little as 48 hours upon moisture exposure. 
  • Mold is everywhere both indoors and outdoors. 
  • Mold spores are microscopic and float in the air. 
  • Mold spores can enter your home through openings, HVAC units or even pets. 
  • Mold spores thrive and grow into colonies anywhere moisture or water exists. 
  • Spore colonies can cause health effects. 
  • To remediate mold, water sources must be eliminated or else the mold will likely resurface. Water sources can range from a leaking roof to something more hidden.
  • It is recommended for indoor humidity to be below 45%.

Next, it’s important to understand how a local damage restoration company can help you with your mold remediation.

SERVPRO professionals receive continual mold remediation training on the most current equipment and methods that will best do the job. Once you contact us, we will respond quickly and begin the remediation process quickly to prevent the mold from continuing to damage your property and to be cost effective. First, our focus will be to uncover the water source. Then, we will isolate the affected area by utilizing a negative air pressure chamber.

After that, your personalized action plan will likely include the following steps:

  1. Inspection and mold damage assessment
  2. Mold containment
  3. Air filtration
  4. Removal of mold and mold-infested materials
  5. Cleaning of personal belongings and other contents
  6. Restoration

Now that you know more about both mold and the remediation process, you understand the urgency in contacting an emergency restoration service immediately for the damage to be contained and the cost to be lessened.

SERVPRO of NW Charlotte is available 24/7 to respond faster to any size disaster and help your property be "Like it never even happened." We look forward to serving you.

Immediate action after Storm Damage

9/20/2021 (Permalink)

Man in home with umbrella over head Avoid water damage and mold issues after storm damage occurs.

Time is of the utmost importance when facing water storm damage of any size. Immediate action is a necessity.

SERVPRO of NW Charlotte is highly trained to respond immediately with advanced equipment and proven techniques that remove water quickly and minimize the potential of unnecessary damage. Because we are faster to any size disaster, we’re aware that water damage comes in all shapes and sizes and may require individual solutions. We have streamlined the process for you.

Because you are our #1 priority, we’ve created this quick and easy checklist as your go-to resource for all things storm & water damage. 

Safety
Your safety is of our utmost concern. Upon the onset of water damage, please assess the following questions:

  • Is it safe to stay in the house?
  • Are there electrical or hazards that could cause someone to slip and fall?
  • If a movable material has become wet, it is likely heavier than normal. If so, do not move it or be sure to exercise caution when lifting.

Contact & Communication
Call SERVPRO of NW Charlotte immediately so that we can walk you through important questions that will allow us to help you efficiently and with quick response. The quicker you call us, the quicker we can provide cleanup and restoration "Like it never even happened."

Inspection and Assessment
Our team will thoroughly inspect the extent and type of water damage. This step is critical in creating a solid and effective action plan. In addition, we will begin the removal of water using our pumps and vacuums so that no further damage occurs and in order to prevent mold.

Drying and Dehumidification
Once the majority of water has been removed, we will use specially designed equipment to extract the water that is more difficult to reach and absorb. This equipment applies a scientific drying approach which includes air movers and dehumidifiers.

Cleaning and Sanitizing
If the water damage has affected your personal property including clothing, furniture or more, we are able to clean the items with specially designed cleaning methods. After cleaning your items, we sanitize them with an antimicrobial treatment and remove odors with industrial air scrubbers and fogging equipment.

Restoration
This is the last step in returning your property to the condition "Like it never even happened." This step completes the process by replacing and rebuilding the affected areas.

We’re standing ready to help you. In the meantime, be sure to take advantage of our SERVPRO app which is a great, free readiness plan for quick access to our resources available especially to you during an emergency.

Storm Damage - What if a tree falls on my house?

9/15/2021 (Permalink)

SERVPRO Truck Driving on road SERVPRO NW Charlotte - Storm Damage Restoration

It’s storm season which increases the probability of high winds and rain that lead to the risk of storm damage to your property from toppled trees, but what if a tree falls on your house? First, remember that SERVPRO of NW Charlotte is faster to any size disaster and will help you from step one of the restoration process. Bookmark this checklist as your go-to resource for clean up and restoration.

What if a tree falls on my house?

  • Evacuate the property immediately.

  • Call 911 to report the incident.

  • Instead of worrying about calling individual services like electricians, tree removal and plumbers, simply make one call to SERVPRO of NW Charlotte and we will find the right service providers including a system that each technician has been fully trained to follow. 

  • Do not re-enter the property without being advised and do not worry about your belongings. We will make sure that your home is secured until repairs are complete. If items need to be removed, we can facilitate that process and make sure the belongings are returned to their original place.  

Storm Damage Restoration

Many homeowners like to be fully informed about the restoration process. We want you to have peace of mind and feel good about trusting SERVPRO of NW with your cleanup and restoration.

Here is a beginning sample of what you can expect:

Outside:

  • Ensure the tree and tree debris is removed from the property.
  • Secure the roof with a covering so that there is no further damage inside.
  • ...and more.

Inside:

  • Make sure any tree debris indoors has been removed. 
  • Assess damage and ensure demolition of damaged areas including ceilings and walls.
  • Spray exposed surfaces with an antimicrobial agent.  
  • ...and more.

Our #1 priority is to make storma damage as stress free as possible. So, if a tree falls on your house during a storm, call SERVPRO of NW Charlotte and we’ll take it from there. 

September is National Preparedness Month

9/15/2021 (Permalink)

SERVPRO NW Charlotte - Vehicles SERVPRO is prepared to help you during your disaster and your recovery.

Each September, National Preparedness Month encourages and reminds Americans to be prepared for disasters or emergencies in their homes, businesses, and communities.

Homeowners, families, communities, and businesses can use this opportunity to find ways or help others understand more about preparing for disasters and reducing risks to health and the environment.

For more information on how you can prepare, please visit the following websites for more information:

FEMA - National Preparedness Month

ReadyNC - Plan & Prepare

City of Charlotte - Emergency Management Plans

Here are some basic preparedness tips:

  • Awareness
    Stay tuned to local news sources (i.e. radio, tv, web) to monitor server weather events.

  • Be Hurricane Ready
    Be prepared for storms by having emergency supplies and safe drinking water on hand.

  • Flooding, Water Damage, and Mold
    Mold growth can occur after sever weather and natural disasters if standing water or water leaks occur in your property. Contact a licensed Mold Remediation company or Specialist if you detect mold.

  • Damage and Cleanup
    Downed trees and damage to structures can be a safety issue. Be careful to avoid electrical and material hazards. It's best to contact local authorities and licensed damage restoration companies when in doubt.


SERVPRO of NW Charlotte, Lincoln County, Southern and NE Gaston County is prepared to help you 24/7 with storm damage repair and restoration.

Tips to Minimize Damage during Storm Season

7/29/2021 (Permalink)

Storms over neighborhood in Charlotte NC Prepare & Prevent Storm Damage

Storm season is upon us which can make property owners feel unsettled and vulnerable. As someone once said, “Confidence comes from being prepared.” Perhaps you, too, lack the confidence of being prepared? As neighbors in your community, we want to help instill confidence that you’ve done everything possible to protect your home before the storm hits. As emergency responders for over two decades, we want to keep you informed by sharing our firsthand insight. Believe us- we’ve seen storm damage of all shapes and sizes. Either way, our #1 goal is for you to be able to enjoy your home as if it never happened! 

So, how can you prepare? To ease any storm’s impact, we’ve compiled our go-to storm preparation recommendations just for you. Follow these tips to help reduce potential storm damage on your property and surrounding areas. You can thank us later. ;)

Storm Preparation 101:

  1. Look up. What trees and limbs are hanging over your property? Be sure dead or loose limbs are clear and trees trimmed. Also, look for trees with visibly shallow root systems and make sure nothing is within falling distance should the roots become saturated and the tree uproots.
  2. Look out. What is on your patio or lawn that could be blown by high winds? Make sure that any fences are secured, furniture anchored, and loose items are stored properly.

  3. Look around. Is the perimeter of your house secure? Are gutters draining properly? If not, be sure to clean out the debris to ensure proper drainage. Are windows and doors protected? If they appear vulnerable, consider covering them with plywood or installing storm shutters and even heavy-duty hardware.

  4. Look inside. Are the floors clear of belongings? Make sure books, electronic devices, photographs, and more are stored off the ground and not lying on the floor to incur potential water damage. Be sure to have a collection of drying materials (towels, rags, etc.) should you need to dry water quickly until help arrives. Also, make sure to have a proper stash of emergency items according to the CDC recommendations: https://www.cdc.gov/disasters/hurricanes/index.html

  5. Look at your phone. Who do you have stored in your contacts to call should any damage occur? Important numbers to have stored include friends and family, fire and police departments, health care providers and hospitals, local emergency management offices, utility companies, American Red Cross, and emergency restoration and clean-up service of choice (three cheers for SERVPRO!). The #1 thing to remember is that fast response will lessen the damage, reduce further damage and minimize costs. 

Should any damages occur beyond your control, don’t forget that we’re your neighbors and already in the area. Our team can respond 24/7 to your storm damage restoration needs, call us - the locally owned and operated, certified professionals: SERVPRO of NW Charlotte, Lincoln County, Southern and NE Gaston County.

We are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and dedicated to responding immediately. The quicker you call us, the quicker your home can return to normal.

Home Flood Preparation

9/26/2019 (Permalink)

Flooded Street in Huntersville NC Flood Preparation

How Can I Prepare My Home for a Flood?

If you live in a flood-prone region, it's crucial to formulate a plan now to protect your family and pets in case bad weather strikes. After your emergency plan is established, you can then learn how to protect your home. These six tips help you prepare your home for a flood in order to limit structural and financial damage in the future.

Elevate Electrical Components

Electrical sockets, switches and wiring should be elevated at least 12 inches above predicted flood levels. This reduces the amount of damage a flood can cause to your home, and it prevents your home from becoming a safety hazard during the recovery period.

If you have a fuel tank in your basement, be sure to anchor it. An unanchored fuel tank can cause serious damage, such as tearing the supply line and spilling oil.

Waterproof Your Basement

Waterproofing your basement typically requires a large sum of money, but this investment pays off if you live in an area that is frequently flooded. Along with waterproofing, set up a sump pump in the basement and a battery-operated backup in case the power goes out during the flood.

Pay Attention to Flood Alerts

You can elevate electrical components and waterproof your basement long before a flood strikes, but some preparation has to be done in the days or hours leading up to a flash flood. Pay attention to the weather, and take flood alerts seriously.

A Flood Watch will be issued when the conditions are right for flooding. This is a good time to protect furniture and important documents. Remember to take action the moment the watch is issued, though, as you'll want to start evacuating before a Flood Warning occurs.

A Flood Warning means that a flood is happening now or going to take place soon.

Move Furniture and Other Valuables to a Safe Place

Once a Flood Watch occurs, move furniture, valuables, and important documents to a safe place. Copies of critical documents like birth certificates or insurance policies should be stored in a waterproof safety box.

Keep in mind that this step should only be taken if you have time to safely evacuate your family. If the flood is likely to occur soon, forget your furniture and head to higher ground.

Pack an Emergency Kit

Store an emergency kit — one you can use after evacuating or when trapped in the house — in your home at all times. This kit should include at least three days' worth of water and food (including 1 gallon [or 4 liters] per person per day), along with essentials like:

  • Flashlights
  • Medications
  • Copies of personal documents
  • Cellphone with chargers

Purchase Flood Insurance

Regular homeowner's insurance does not cover flood damage costs. If your home is located in a flood-prone area, it's a good idea to also purchase flood insurance, which is available to homeowners through the National Flood Insurance Program.

How to Prepare Your Home for an Emergency

8/13/2019 (Permalink)

When disaster strikes, the last thing you want to think about is where the spare batteries are or whether your perishables have passed their expiration date. Make sure you're ready for any situation — and how to handle the aftermath — with these top tips.

1. Pack a "Go Bag"

If you have to leave your home in a hurry, you'll want to have some essentials packed and ready to go. Keep the following supplies, recommended by FEMA, in a portable container in the area of your house where you'll take shelter:

  • Three days' worth of food and water (at least a gallon per family member)
  • Battery powered (or hand crank) flashlights and radio
  • Extra batteries
  • First aid kit
  • Whistle to signal for help
  • Trash bags and duct tape, along with a dust mask
  • Wrench or pliers to turn off utilities
  • Manual can opener for food
  • Regional maps
  • Cell phone with chargers, inverter, or solar charger
  • Moist towelettes and any personal sanitation or specific family needs, like pet supplies

(For additional recommendations, be sure to check out ready.gov)

We also suggest having smaller versions of your kit stocked with a few necessities like walking shoes, snacks, and a flashlight at work. In general, you'll also need enough cash on hand for five days of basic needs (gas and food), but any amount of ready money will help if ATMs are down.

Once you have your supplies together, it pays to go through them at least once a year too, to weed out expired food and batteries.

2. Make an Action Plan

When things get chaotic, you want to make sure that every family member knows what to do. We suggest designating two meeting places (one close by and one a little further away in your neighborhood) and hang a map with the spots marked near your emergency kit.

It also pays to have important contacts written down if the power goes out and there's nowhere to charge your cell phone. Make a mini contact list — ready.gov has templates you can print out — with important numbers that everyone can stow in their wallets. Leave a copy in your emergency kit, too. Establish a plan for checking in with relatives in case local lines get jammed. Text messages will often go through, even when phone lines are clogged.

3. Prep Your Home

If the power goes out and you have time, unplug appliances and electronics and turn off air conditioners, whether you stay or go. This will prevent damage when the electricity surges back on. Leave one lamp on so you'll know when the power's back.

How you store food can also make a difference when it comes to salvaging items afterwards, according to the FSIS. If there's a chance of flooding, be sure to store dry goods in waterproof containers high enough that they will be safely out of the way of contaminated water.

Grouping food together in the freezer can help it stay colder longer in the case of a power outage. If you have advanced warning, freeze any items you don't need right away, like leftovers, milk, and fresh meat and poultry to keep them at a safe temperature longer and stock your freezer with as much ice as you can fit. Coolers stocked with ice can also be helpful if the power is out for more than four hours.

Though you'll want to minimize the amount you open and close your refrigerator door once the power goes out, FSIS recommends keeping an appliance thermometer in your fridge and freezer to help you determine if food is safe to eat. The refrigerator temperature should be lower than 40 degrees Fahrenheit and the freezer temperature should be below zero degrees Fahrenheit.

After the Emergency

Coming home after a major disaster can be daunting. Call SERVPRO of Northwest Charlotte to help you in the event your home is affected.

Tree Maintenance and Storm Damage

5/9/2019 (Permalink)

Trees on Property Tree Maintenance and Storm Damage

Regular tree maintenance can help prevent storm damage to your home that is commonly caused by high winds and poor health of the trees on your property. 

Preventative Tips

Throughout the year there are steps you can take to prevent (or at least reduce the amount of) damage to your roof, home, deck/patio and yard when the weather brings heavy rain and wind. Homeowners can take care of most tree maintenance, but when dealing with tree removal, dead or diseased trees or insects/pests, it's best to call in the professionals for help. Depending on your situation, you may need to contact a certified arborist who can thoroughly assess the condition of the trees on your property, or a tree removal service that can perform a thorough assessment of any storm damage and cut down and remove any trees that are a potential hazard.

TRIMMING AND PRUNING

Any branches close to your house should be trimmed back on a regular basis. This will help protect against potential roof damage from fallen limbs if severe weather hits your area. Heavy rain, hail and powerful winds can easily snap and break weak branches off, which could result in major storm cleanup efforts if they fall. Pruning to remove dead limbs can be done any time of year, but is typically recommended during the winter and spring months.

TREE REMOVAL

Tree removal is a necessary part of tree maintenance, especially if there is a tree posing a risk to your home that could fall during a storm and cause damage. If you suspect you have a dead tree, you should hire a tree removal service for an assessment and they will recommend next steps. If you have a diseased tree, it may be beyond trying to save. A certified arborist can assess the tree and recommend whether or not it can be rehabilitated.  

WATER AND SOIL

Every tree species has specific needs, so make sure you know what type of trees are in your yard in order to care for them appropriately. Some trees are drought-tolerant and can go for long periods of time without water. However, for trees that do need water more consistently—and if they aren't receiving enough rain—they should be watered until the soil is moist. Newly planted trees will need more water and attention, especially during the first two years, to help foster root establishment. To help trees retain enough water, cover the soil with wood mulch.

There are six main types of soil—sand, silt, peat, loam, chalky and clay—and each requires different types of care, as soil and root management are essential to good tree health. If soil composition is too compact, it will prevent trees from growing and should be aerated. Soil should also maintain the right level of moisture and nutrients in order to keep trees healthy, otherwise trees could develop disease, become weak or die, making them a potential hazard to your home during a storm.

Storm Damage Cleanup and Restoration

When a storm hits your home, you need help immediately. Our team can quickly respond, help prevent secondary damage, and help reduce restoration costs.

Call us, we're here to help (704) 393-7890.

Why Sewers Backup

5/1/2019 (Permalink)

Sewer Backup Sewer Backup

Sewer Backup can be caused by various things, including storm damage from heavy rains.

Here are a few commons causes of sewer backup:

1. Roots can penetrate and clog the sewer line. Trees and shrubs can send out thousands of feet of tendrils a year in search of water. A small crack in a pipe can be an open invitation to the plant to spread the crack and enjoy the water. As the roots enter the pipe, they often spread quickly until the roots have created a mass that can easily block the pipe and cause a sewer backup.

2. Clogs can form in drain pipes or lateral sewer lines. A sink, tub, or toilet can easily clog over time as the sewer pipes corrode or fill with sludge. This is especially true if pipes are used to discard household debris from garbage disposals and toilet flushes. Hair buildup can also easily clog drain pipes.

3. Heavy rains can cause city-wide sewer malfunctions. As rain water or melting snow enter over-taxed sewer lines, there can be nowhere for the water to go. The liquid can fill streets and drainage lines until finally, a cesspit backup is often the result. As the water levels rise, so can the sewage levels.

4. Sewer lines can break or collapse. The lateral line between the building and the street were often historically built from clay or cast-iron pipes. The fragile pipes can sometimes collapse as they crack with age and can often cause in sewer problems. 

When a sewer backup occurs, it can fill the building with black water, fecal matter, and bacteria. It can also lead to the destruction of possessions and damage to the building structure.

Contact our water damage repair team at the first sign of sewer problems. Our technicians can take immediate action and protect the property from further water damage.