Recent Storm Damage Posts

How To Obtain Government Flood Assistance

10/15/2020 (Permalink)

FEMA US Homeland Security Citizen and Immigration Services Flyer Closeup Money from FEMA is only given if you reside within a federally confirmed flood plane

If flooding compromises your home and you are unable to pay for repairs, you may be able to obtain federal assistance in place of private flood insurance. Homeowners who lack conventional coverage can take advantage of two unique government-backed options.

Flood Facts

Those harboring doubts concerning the risk floods present should consider the following realities:

  • Out of all natural disasters, floods are the most common and costly.
  • Approximately only 15% of homeowners own flood policies.
  • Nearly half of all homeowners incorrectly believe their homeowner’s insurance covers flooding.

The fact remains that floods present great peril, both to people’s safety and their bank accounts. Before a storm strikes Virginia Gardens, FL, and triggers damage that requires the expertise of a water restoration specialist, become familiar with the following financial flood protection avenues.

Flood Relief
Your first flood insurance option is a loan provided by the Small Business Administration. The second is a disaster grant endorsed by FEMA.
SBA disaster loan repayment terms can extend for up to 30 years. Individuals unable to obtain cash elsewhere face a maximum interest rate of 4%. For those who do possess the ability to acquire outside backing, it rises to 8%. Around half of all applicants receive approval, with low credit scores being the explanation for most rejections.
Money from FEMA is only given if you reside within a federally confirmed flood plane. Unlike with the above, these funds do not need to be repaid if you lack coverage. The limit is $33,000, although the average payout amounts to $5,000. Those with insurance can even access this funding to help with expenses excluded by their policy.
Both selections present eligibility requirements. For instance, you may be required to prove that the area in which you reside has been declared a federal disaster zone.
It is highly recommended that you obtain private flood insurance if you live inside a vulnerable territory. However, know that alternatives exist even under circumstances where you lack a traditional monetary safeguard.

Maintaining the Roof on Your Commercial Building

9/11/2020 (Permalink)

Construction engineer wearing safety uniform inspection metal roofing work for roof industrial concept Commercial roof inspection in Virginia Gardens, FL

Tips On Extending The Life Of Your Commercial Roof

Because severe weather can strike at any time in Virginia Gardens, FL, your roof is continually prone to damage caused by high winds and torrential rains. Maintaining the roof of your commercial building can lessen the severity of potential roof damage. Follow these tips on extending the life of your commercial roof.

Preventative Maintenance
Your roof should be inspected at least a couple of times a year. Whether the inspector is you or a maintenance crew, a thorough visual inspection can catch any potential problem areas before they become severe.

Keep an eye out for the following signs:

  • Broken or cracked shingles or tiles
  • Clogged drainage systems
  • Peeling edges
  • Flashing that needs to be replaced or repaired
  • Overhanging branches from surrounding trees

Roof damage caused by wind can include lost roofing material and fallen trees. Making sure your roof is clear and maintained is your best line of defense when high winds occur.

Repairing Your Roof
If you find damage to your roof, don't delay in getting it repaired. Moisture seeping in can cause further damage to the structure of your building.
A good investment is waterproofing your roof. There are numerous products that can seal your roofing materials to prevent damage caused by rain and high winds. These products can also stop cracking caused by the sun.
If you experience massive roof damage during a storm, make sure the building remains unoccupied and call your insurance company and storm restoration specialists to assess the damage and perform any cleanup that is necessary. They can also inform you if a complete roof rebuild will be necessary to maintain the safety of your property.
By familiarizing yourself with your roof and your building's surroundings, you'll be able to spot signs of potential hazards of wind damage sooner. You'll also feel secure in the knowledge that your roof can withstand severe weather. Regular roof maintenance not only protects the occupants of your building, but it also protects your investment.

5 Steps To Take if Your Plumbing Backs Up

8/7/2020 (Permalink)

Water gauge pressure, hand shut off main valve, close-up. It may be best to temporarily shut off water to the house to prevent flooding

The Following Steps Can Help You Limit The Damage

A sewer backup can cause many problems for your West Miami, FL, home. If the water backs up too much into your bathtubs, sinks, or toilets, it can start to overflow. If this happens, the following steps can help you limit the damage.

1. Turn Off the Water
If there is any water in use in the house, it might be contributing to the overflow. Turn off any appliances that use water, such as dishwashers and washing machines. In some cases, it may be best to temporarily shut off water to the house to prevent flooding.

2. Relocate Items From the Area
In order to keep them from becoming too damaged, you should remove any items that you can from the area. Move belongings to a dry location and set aside anything that has already been affected as they may be able to be salvaged.

3. Remove Excess Water
When it is left to sit, water can cause a number of different problems. It can weaken building materials and cause wood to warp. It can often cause mold to grow as well. For this reason, water should be removed as quickly as possible.

4. Clean and Sanitize
The water involved in a sewer backup is often category 3 or black water. This means that it carries a large number of bacteria and contaminants. Anything that comes into contact with this water will need to be thoroughly cleaned. If this is not possible, it will need to be replaced.

5. Address the Underlying Issue
If you don’t figure out the cause, you might continue to have a sink, toilet, or bathtub backup. In some cases, this can be as simple as a clogged pipe. In others, there may be more significant damage to the plumbing system. It is often best to hire a professional to determine the problem.
Because the problem can be difficult to fix on your own and the water is often unsafe to handle without the proper gear, you should have a professional cleanup and restoration company take care of a sewer backup. They can locate the source of the problem and return your home to its previous condition.

Add Sump Pump Maintenance to Annual To-Do List

4/27/2020 (Permalink)

Replacing the old sump pump in a basement with a new one to drain the collected ground water from the sump or pit A sump pump is only as good as its maintenance

Add Sump Pump Maintenance to Annual To-Do List

For many homes in Doral, FL, when stormwaters rise, they rely on the sump pump for protection against flooding. Typically installed in the lowest portion of a house, if it is working correctly and activates to drain water above set levels, homeowners won’t even notice it hard at work. As with any other part of a house, the pump is only as good as its maintenance.

Annual Inspection

Luckily, pump maintenance is easy, as long as it is done. Below are annual maintenance steps to ensure a sump pump will work when it needs to:

  • Verify the power source is plugged in and connected to a GFCI outlet.
  • Inspect the cord for tears, wear, or other damage.
  • Ensure the pump maintains an upright, level position.
  • Test the pump by filling the basin with water.
  • Remove the pump from the basin to clean potential debris from the grate.
  • Examine pipes and joints, ensuring they are tightly connected and properly drain.
  • Check that the discharge pipe is debris-free.

Extra Protection
For homeowners who have experienced flooding and required the services of water remediation experts, they know how important a properly functioning sump pump is. For those who haven’t had a flooded basement, if the pump is old, it might be time for a basement inspection.
Along with maintenance and verifying that the pump works and is not impaired, there are simple steps to keep water from infiltrating your home. While there are more complex and costly ways to waterproof lower levels, tasks, such as regular cleaning and maintain gutters and downspouts, can go a long way to keep water at bay. Additional yard grade and landscaping can also help keep your home more secure.
For many people, a sump pump is something that can easily be forgotten. If maintenance isn’t already on your to-do list, adding it can provide peace of mind and keep your investment running longer.

Understanding Contamination Levels for Commercial Water Damage

3/31/2020 (Permalink)

Water pipe break. Exposing a burst water main, focused on the spraying water and the pipe If the water originated from a broken water supply line, you have very little toxicity

Understanding Contamination Levels for Commercial Water Damage

If your business sustains water damage, it’s smart to begin the cleanup process swiftly. Water damage is affected by the level of hazardous material present in the water. Flood water, for instance, is more toxic than a dishwasher leak. This overview of water toxicity levels may help you assess the damage and begin the restoration process.

Category 1

This level, also known as clean water, reflects the least toxic category. If the water originated from the following supply-line sources, you have very little toxicity:

  • Broken water supply line
  • Overflowing bathtub or sink
  • Leaking ice maker
  • Rain entering a damaged roof
  • Leaking water heater

Low-toxicity water can still cause damage, so it is smart to contact your insurance agent to confirm the damage will be covered by your conventional insurance policy.

Category 2

This level of contamination, known as gray water, describes a moderate degree of chemical, biological, or physical toxicity. Less hazardous than flood water, Category 2 water may contain food, dirt, or grease. Water leaking from under your sink or a shower drain would fit in this category. Your commercial insurance will generally cover this level of cleanup and restoration.

Category 3

This high-level contamination is referred to as black water. It includes water from any source that could possibly contain seawater, sewage, chemicals, or flood water. This unsanitary water can be toxic to pets and humans. Category 3 contamination should be cleaned up by a water remediation specialist as soon as possible.

If your water damage is caused by flood water, it would not be covered by your conventional insurance policy. You would need to have had a government-issued flood policy in place at the time of your damage to obtain coverage. It’s important to contact your agent for help assessing which type of insurance you need.
When your West Miami, FL, business sustains storm damage or any type of water damage, it presents a disruptive and unsettling time for your company. Once you have evaluated your contamination level, you are equipped to implement the best cleanup strategy and return your operation to business as usual.

How To Landscape For Flood Protection

11/12/2019 (Permalink)

white plastic rain gutter and dark sky. concept : preparing maintenance rain gutter before rainy season. Proper rain drainage is important

How To Landscape For Flood Protection

From unexpected downpours to nationally anticipated hurricanes, severe storms can take a toll on your home and yard. As storms grow more intense, it's important to take proper measures to protect your property. You don't want to risk damaging flood water working its way into your home. Here are some ways you can use landscaping as a protective layer against outside flooding.

1. Get Creative in the Garden

Rain gardens are a beautiful and efficient way to lessen the potential damage of a heavy rain storm. Even a small rain garden filled with native plants can help absorb water more efficiently into the ground. Another option is to use heavy mulch in place of lighter pine options. Heavier mulches stay in place better and thus keep soil and rainwater in place better, too.

2. Divert Your Rain Spouts

To help guide water away from your home, proper rain drainage is important. Downspout diverters are effective for moving the water to lower ground and keeping your home safe from outside flooding. You can also consider installing rain barrels, which keep water from entering the ground to begin with. Another benefit of rain barrels is that they provide free water for your gardens during dry spells.

3. Build More Drainage

Harsh storms can greatly damage properties that feature a lot of impervious surfaces. There are many ways to divert water from within and around these areas. In addition to the above tips, you can add drainage alongside, or even within, your driveway and sidewalks. Channel drains move water away from paved areas well. You can also consider using gravel or grass in place of pavement.
When it comes to your Miami, FL, home, consider these steps when thinking about landscape options. If needed, consult professional storm damage restoration experts to help. Diligence in preventing outside flooding from entering your home will help keep it safe and dry.

How to Prepare Your Business for a Flood

10/28/2019 (Permalink)

Flood insurance form on a table with a pen and glasses on a table Purchase flood insurance to protect your business from this kind of damage

How to Prepare Your Business for a Flood

If you are expecting flooding during a storm in West Miami,FL, you should take steps to prepare your business. Because it is possible that your building could be affected, you should do what you can to minimize the damage. Be sure to consider the safety of yourself and your employees as well. The following are a few things you can do.

1. Check For Existing Damage

Existing damage, such as cracks or deterioration, can become worse with flood damage. To prevent this from happening, you should inspect the building before severe weather. You should remember to perform regular maintenance as well.

2. Back Up Important Information

If there is flooding and the water enters the building, it could potentially affect your electronics and equipment. If you have important files and data on your computers, you should create a backup in case they are damaged. You can make a physical backup with a USB drive or external hard drive, or you can create a digital backup by uploading your files to cloud storage.

3. Purchase Flood Insurance

Because flood damage is not usually covered under a basic commercial insurance policy, you may want to purchase an additional flood policy to protect your business from this kind of damage. Although it may seem like an unnecessary extra expense, it can save your company money if your building is affected during a storm.

4. Have an Emergency Plan

Along with damaging your building, flooding can be dangerous to your employees. Create a plan for emergency evacuation as well as a severe weather policy. Make sure that everyone knows what is expected during this kind of situation.
During a flood, black water can cause a lot of damage to your building. This water is highly contaminated, so instead of trying to remove it yourself, hire a cleanup and restoration company to do it for you. They can sanitize your building and perform any necessary repairs. They will be able to restore many damaged belongings as well.

4 Options for Working During a Power Outage

10/23/2019 (Permalink)

Man working on the computer in the dark. Along with a power outage, storms can cause a variety of other issues.

If there is a power outage in your building during a storm in Doral, FL you could just call it a day and send everyone home. However, this is likely not ideal as you can lose valuable time and profits. Instead, consider one of the following alternatives.

1. Use a Generator
If you want to continue working for a bit after the power goes out, a portable generator can be a great solution. It can give you enough time to finish up important tasks and shut down your computers safely to avoid damaging them or losing any of your data. However, these are generally only designed to be used for a few hours at a time.

2. Move to Another Location
If you need internet access to continue your work, then you might consider moving to a public space like a library or a coffee shop for part of the day. Many of these offer free wi-fi, so it can be a convenient solution for a short period.

3. Work From Home
Another option is to simply have everyone work from home. If your employees have internet access at home or have work to do that does not require them to be online, then this can be a good time to complete some individual work.

4. Do Tasks That Don’t Require Electricity
While a power outage can be a big inconvenience, it doesn’t have to be the end of your work day. If there are things that need to be done that you don’t need electricity for, then take this time to work on those instead. You can leave other tasks for when the power comes back on.

Storms can cause a variety of issues including damage to your building. If this happens, you can contact a professional cleanup and restoration service. They can remove any water damage, perform repairs and salvage affected belongings.

Storm Flooding Cleanup vs. Other Flooding Damage

9/17/2019 (Permalink)

Pipe burst Pipe burst in Miami,FL

Flood cleanup can be a serious task even for smaller incidents. If water finds its way into your home, you not only have to worry about the integrity of the structure, but you must also consider carpet and hardwood flooring, electronics, documents, furniture and personal items. Depending on the type of flooding, the cleanup effort will require different steps and equipment.

Why Call the Pros

A professional flood cleanup and restoration company should be your first line of defense to take care of flood damage. This isn't a duty you should handle alone or rely solely on friends or neighbors. Professional crews offer many advantages, including:

  • Experience handling floods of all sizes and types
  • The most advanced equipment
  • Years of training
  • Proven cleanup methods and safe practices

Storm Flooding

If water gets into your Miami, FL, home during and after a major storm, the consequences could be hazardous. Often, massive storms will overwhelm an area's drainage system, which could then back up the sewage. This may introduce black water into your home. This is considered Category 3 water damage. It contains harmful materials such as human waste and other hazardous items. Contact with it could cause severe illness or even death. Cleaning Category 3 damage after a storm requires intervention from a certified cleanup team. The crew will not only remove all water from your home but will also thoroughly sanitize if, making it safe once again.

Pipe Burst

Broken pipes and other plumbing issues are also frequent culprits of residential flooding. Though this can also cause damage, there's not the same level of concern because this is a Category 1 situation. This means the water will not contain lethal materials. Still, you should call, a restoration company to remove the water. These teams have the right tools to completely extract the water and dry the area.
Flooding is always a concern, no matter how it starts. It's important to recognize the source of a flood so you can be aware of the danger level.

3 Tips for Preparing for an Upcoming Storm

8/29/2019 (Permalink)

Sky turned black from a thunderstorm and lighting strike. A particularly devastating storm may cause some damage to your building no matter what you do.

"During storm season in Doral, Florida it's important to be prepared for whatever Mother Nature may throw at you. You may not be able to avoid all damage to your building, but you can protect the most vulnerable areas and items. There are several steps you can take to minimize your risk of flooding.
1. Make Your Basement Flood Resistant
The lowest level of your building is the most vulnerable to flood damage. Water from heavy rainfall can seep into cracks in the foundation. The sewer lines can get clogged and back up into your building. To increase your basement's resistance, have the exterior of your building inspected and repair any weak spots or potential points of entry that inspectors find. Hire local plumbing professionals to make sure your sewer lines are intact. Have a sump pump installed so that any water that gets in can be pumped right back out.
2. Protect Sensitive Equipment and Important Documents
Electricity and water don't mix. If your building is in danger of flooding, make sure equipment and electrical outlets are raised off the floor and above the flood line. Store documents in files on higher shelves or digitize them, eliminating the need for storage of physical copies. 
3. Build a Barrier Against Floodwaters
Sandbags can protect your building against storm damage. Place them in any area that is particularly vulnerable. If you have enough time, it is wise to places them around the perimeter of your building, where they can work as a makeshift dam. Set up a barrier around doors and windows, as water is more likely to enter your building at these points. The use of sandbags can delay or maybe even stop floodwaters from encroaching on your building. You can prevent flooding during most heavy storms, though, by taking a few key precautions."

3 Steps To Prevent Mold Growth After a Flood

8/28/2019 (Permalink)

Dark cloudy storm turns sky purple with lighting. How to prevent fungus after a large storm with water loss.

When it floods in Doral, Florida there is a chance that you could end up with a lot of water inside your house. When this happens, it is important to take action quickly to prevent secondary damage like mold growth. Here are a few ways to prevent this fungus from taking over your home.
1. Remove Water From the House
Mold grows easily in moist environments and can begin to spread in as little as a day. To keep this from happening, you need to remove all of the standing water from your home as soon as possible. It is a good idea to contact a water damage remediation service in this situation. They can perform mitigation to prevent further damage as well as repairs for anything that has already been affected.
2. Clean and Sanitize Surfaces and Belongings
Flood waters are considered Category 3 or black water. This water can carry harmful bacteria, sewage and other contaminants like mold spores. For this reason, you should be sure to clean and sanitize anything in your home that has been in contact with the water. Doing so reduces any health risks as well as the spread of mold.
3. Allow Everything To Dry Thoroughly
Once the water has been removed and everything has been cleaned, you need to make sure your home is completely dry. Even small amounts of water can contribute to mold growth, so this step is crucial. Opening windows and using fans to circulate air can be helpful. If you hire a professional service, these workers have the necessary equipment to help this process go more quickly.
Flood waters in your home can result in a lot of damage to your house. Mold growth is a common problem after water damage, but following these steps can help prevent the fungus from spreading. This can save both time and money during repairs.