Recent Storm Damage Posts

4 Types of Flood Waters | SERVPRO of Marlton/Morningside

12/18/2019 (Permalink)

flooding inside yellow room with tv, chair, lamp and dresser held above water by ropes If you experience any storm damage or are in need repairs, contact SERVPRO of Marlton/Morningside

4 Types of Flood Waters

Regardless of where you live, you can be the victim of a flood. Thanks to the damaging effects of water, floods can destroy much of your home and everything inside. If you want to better protect your home from flooding, check out these four common types of flood waters you should be aware of.

  1. Clean Water Flooding

Sometimes, a faulty pipe or appliance causes flooding inside your house. For example, during the winter, a pipe (containing fresh drinking water) freezes and breaks to create a leak in your basement. This water was designed to be used and consumed by humans, so you don't have to worry about contaminates like sewage.

As long as you catch the damage quickly, this type of flooding can be stopped fast. All you need to do is turn off the water from the source, such as the main water valve. It's still important to remove the water and dry items as fast as possible to prevent mold and mildew, which can cause breathing problems, skin irritation, eye irritation, and other medical issues.

  1. River Flooding

If an area suddenly receives a lot of rainfall (or a lot of snowfall that melts quickly), it can cause rivers to overflow. Nearby houses, which are normally far from the waters, may find their basements, crawlspaces or entire house filled with river water. Unfortunately, this type of water may be heavily contaminated.

First, many rivers, especially those in urban areas, aren't clean. They contain many pollutants, chemicals, and diseases that can harm you and your family. Similarly, while the water was traveling to your home, it may have caught water pouring from overflowing sewers, which means the flood water may contain fecal matter and similar contaminates. For this reason, especially if there was lots of water damage, many homeowners need extensive repairs to drywall, flooring, and other areas of the home.

  1. Groundwater Flooding

While much of the Earth's water is on the surface in the form of oceans, lakes, and rivers, there is also a lot of water hiding underground. This groundwater is commonly used for drinking wells, which means it is relatively clean. Plus, as the water is pushed through dirt and rocks, it may shed more contaminates. For this reason, unless the water smells or looks rancid, you can assume that it is mostly clean.

As long as you start cleaning right away, you should be able to restore much of what was exposed to the water. If drywall was impacted, however, you may need to have your walls opened so that they can fully dry. Even if the wall looks dry and clean outside, it may have mold and moisture inside the walls. This is especially a problem if the insulation absorbs water because it can hold the water for a long period of time.

  1. Sewer Flooding  

Sewage can be found in nearly any type of flood water, but flood water can also come directly from the sewer. In some cases, this is simply caused by your toilet or septic system backing up. As a result, the toilet and other drains may begin to let sewage back into your home.

In more severe cases, if lots of flooding causes the sewage system to overflow (or if the system is damaged in some way), it can cause sewage to back up into your home via the toilet. The worst part: this backup is not just your waste; it can be waste from anyone in your community. Sewage like this isn’t just gross; it can cause illness and disease.

Not all flood water is contaminated, but all flood water can lead to major damage and mold growth. If you would like to know more about types of flood waters and damage or if you need to request a quote, contact us at SERVPRO of Marlton/Morningside today.

Storm Damage and Your Home’s Structure

11/18/2019 (Permalink)

Large uprooted tree laying on ground with branches creating roof damage to red brick house SERVPRO of Marlton/Morningside responds immediately to any storm emergency. We repair your home to its pre-disaster condition.

Ways a Storm May Damage Your Home's Structural Integrity

One of the reasons why prompt storm damage remediation is so critical is because a storm may damage your home in ways that aren't always obvious. A professional can help you identify and solve any storm damage to the structural portions and other inner workings of your home.

Discover some of the ways a storm could damage your home's structural integrity.

Roof Damage

Your roof can have obvious structural damage if a tree falls on it. However, that's not the only way that a storm could damage the structure of your roof. For example, large tree branches that fall on the roof can also cause damage even though they don't cause an evident cave-in.

Another way a storm can structurally damage your roof is by overloading it with weight. Too much snow can have this effect, especially if it's very wet snow or accompanied by ice.

Foundation Damage

One type of storm damage that can affect your foundation is flooding. Another is erosion. Localized flooding can increase the pressure of water against your foundation wall, which could result in cracks, shifting, sinking, and bowed foundation walls.

Erosion can be more insidious. Rivulets of water from the storm can wash away dirt from around your home's foundation. At first, this may not seem like a big deal, but the ground around your foundation is what holds it in place. And erosion can eventually result in similar types of foundation damage as it allows water more access to your home's foundation.

Interior Water Damage

Whether it enters through a broken window or a roof leak or rises up from the ground, water can be one of the biggest forces of storm damage. Although water may not destroy literally everything it touches, it can come close. Water can cause structural failure in commonly used building materials in your walls, ceilings, and floors.

Drywall can soften once it's been soaked in water and will need replacing. Other building materials such as particleboard may swell up and need replacing as well. Water can also cause plywood to delaminate and make other types of wood crack or split.

Floors, sub-floors, structural beams, rafters, and other significant structural components of your home could be susceptible, depending on what they're made of.

Pest Damage

Although storms don't actually create pests, they can send wildlife looking for places to shelter and can sometimes create damage that allows pests into your home. While most pests are just a nuisance (and sometimes a potential health and safety hazard), some can actually affect your home's structure as well.

Termites may be the most significant example of an insect that causes structural damage. Other wood-destroying insects (typically carpenter ants and powder post beetles) can also cause structural damage to wood components of your home. Prompt storm damage repair can reduce the chances of picking up any of these pests due to storm damage.

Mold Damage

Mold can be a byproduct of storm damage. Because the visible growth of mold exists on the surface of a wall, floor, or other object, homeowners may think of mold as more of a staining problem than a structural problem. But mold has deep-reaching roots that can also eat away at the interior of the object it infests.

Mold uses the organic substances in the wall or other structure as food, so a more severe mold growth may mean a faster deterioration of structural stability. Fortunately, this damage doesn't occur quickly. But mold growth does begin quickly; the EPA recommends remediating any moisture problems in under 48 hours to prevent mold.

As you can see, your home's structure is susceptible to many other types of damage than just large falling objects. For more information on storm damage, how you can prevent storm damage, and what to do if you suspect your home has sustained damage from a recent storm, get in touch with SERVPRO of Marlton/Morningside today.

Storm Damage Prevention and Restoration | SERVPRO of Marlton/Morningside

10/16/2019 (Permalink)

Severe thunderstorm and tornado forming in the background After a devastating storm, contact us as soon as possible. Our job is to repair your home to its pre-disaster condition.

Dealing with a strong storm, such as a severe thunderstorm or tornado, is not easy, but following the right procedures helps keep the damage to a minimum. Naturally, you want to prepare well for any upcoming storm, and of course, you also want to restore your home to its original condition if any damage occurs.

This article looks at how to prepare for strong storms and also examines some key restoration issues.

Preventing Damage From A Storm

One important task for homeowners expecting severe weather to strike their area is to trim back any large tree branches that could potentially fall on their house. In many cases, roof damage from strong storms is the result of large branches falling on the roof and letting rainwater into the home.

Doors and windows often sustain significant damage during strong storms. A good way to keep any damage to a minimum is to cover doors and windows with plywood. If you live in an area where storms are common, it's a good idea to install storm shutters, also known as hurricane shutters.

Do not leave any outdoor furniture outside when a storm is expected. Strong winds can easily lift outdoor chairs and tables and turn them into dangerous flying objects. Put all outdoor furniture in a garage or storage room well in advance of any storm.

Another good idea is to disconnect all of your electronic equipment, such as televisions and computers, before the storm hits. Also, make certain that you know how to turn off your utilities should this become necessary once the storm is over.

Restoring Damage After a Storm

Roofs frequently suffer a significant amount of damage during severe storms. The shingles are often blown off, or tree limbs and other objects create holes in the sheathing. To prevent water from getting into the house through a damaged roof, have a tarp placed over the roof by a professional restoration service, such as SERVPRO.

Also, if you must leave your home after a storm make sure that the doors and windows have been boarded up if you have not done so already. If the storm damaged any boards that you put up in advance, have the damaged boards replaced.

Another vital issue that typically crops up after a major storm is mold remediation. Storms tend to let water into the house, and excessive moisture provides an excellent habitat for mold growth. Mold can gain a foothold in your home in a short period of time, so you must deal with mold problems quickly.

Some mold is not harmful to humans, but other types of mold can cause health problems, so your best course of action is not to deal with the issue yourself. There is no reason to take a chance with your health when experts are available to do the job. Call a qualified restoration firm and have them get rid of the mold. 

It's also quite common for important documents to receive damage after a storm due to exposure to moisture. You will want to save your documents if at all possible. Document restoration is not a do-it-yourself job. Fortunately, many storm restoration companies offer document restoring services.

A great way to save damaged documents is to have them freeze-dried. Air-drying damaged documents is another option. The best method usually depends on the amount of damage the documents received.

Preventing storm damage is important, but it's not always possible to prevent a very strong storm from damaging your home or your belongings. If a storm does cause damage to your home or personal property, SERVPRO of Marlton/Morningside can provide vital restoration assistance. Contact us for more information.