Preparing for Winter
Frozen pipes are the worst!
January is normally the coldest month across the nation. The national average temperature is 31 degrees Fahrenheit. This puts exterior pipes like hose bibs and irrigation systems at risk.
For houses without adequate protection the temperature alert threshold is 20 degrees Fahrenheit. At this temperature un-insulated pipes in unconditioned areas are at risk.
However, pipes can freeze in well insulated houses when the temperatures dip into the teens or below. Extended period of time with temperatures in this range can be dangerous, as heat within enclosed areas of a structure naturally dissipates.
Of course we all have heard the tip to open cabinet doors. It is a simple fix that can save you an immense amount of difficulty. Somehow though we are inclined to think, because it has not happened it will not happen. That is all good and well until it happens.
When pipes freeze hundreds of gallons of water can flow through the walls, behind cabinets and into ceilings. Water damage can cause cabinets to swell, ceilings to collapse, along with damage to furniture and belongings. Water damage also causes soaked carpet and pad. Hardwood and laminate floors can buckle and swell.
As cold spells move across the country make it a habit to open doors to enclosed spaces that contain plumbing. On a side note when you open those doors make sure to remove any hazardous materials to keep them away from children and pets.
If your pipes do freeze make sure to shut the water off at the source, call a plumber to fix the pipe and call SERVPRO of Leavenworth & NW Wyandotte County. Here at SERVPRO we have the training and equipment to make water damage in your home “Like it never even happened.”
Helping Educate with Fun!
Have fun while you learn!
Every state requires Continuing Education Credits for property and casualty insurance professionals. State requirements vary, generally running from 10 to 24 hours biennially while a few states require more. Failure to remain current with credits can result in fines and loss of license.
SERVPRO of Leavenworth & NW Wyandotte County has made a commitment to serve insurance professionals by offering free continuing education classes in various locations around Metro Kansas City and Leavenworth Kansas.
Teaching these classes has become part of the job I enjoy most. Being a Certified Continuing Education Instructor allows me to provide in-depth information on the current state of the restoration industry. The adjusters and agents can then use this information to assist their clients in getting the service they deserve.
SERVPRO of Leavenworth & NW Wyandotte County offers insurance credits for Kansas and Missouri Agents as well as key states for insurance adjusters. Those states are Louisiana, Oklahoma, and Texas.
Below is a photo from our Halloween themed CE Class.
Fire Safety Tips for cooking this holiday season
Remember to be safe while you are making delicious treats!
Cooking brings family and friends together, provides an outlet for creativity and can be relaxing. But did you know that cooking fires are the number one cause of home fires and home injuries? By following a few safety tips you can prevent these fires.
“Cook with Caution”
Be on alert! If you are sleepy or have consumed alcohol don’t use the stove or stove top.
Stay in the kitchen while you are frying, grilling, or broiling food. If you leave the kitchen for even a short period of time, turn off the stove.
If you are simmering, baking, roasting, or boiling food, check it regularly, remain in the home while food is cooking, and use a timer to remind you that you are cooking.
Keep anything that can catch fire — oven mitts, wooden utensils, food packaging, towels or curtains away from your stove top.
If you have a small (grease) cooking fire and decide to fight the fire...
On the stove top, smother the flames by sliding a lid over the pan and turning off the burner. Leave the pan covered until it is completely cooled.
For an oven fire, turn off the heat and keep the door closed.
If you have any doubt about fighting a small fire…
Just get out! When you leave, close the door behind you to help contain the fire.
Call 9-1-1 or the local emergency number from outside the home.
Reproduced from NFPA’s website, www.nfpa.org/publiceducation. © NFPA
If you do happen to have a kitchen or cooking fire be sure to call the experts in fire damage restoration! SERVPRO of Leavenworth and NW Wyandotte County is always here to help!
Cleaning Commercial Facilities
When you're the No. 1 cleaning and restoration company, there are many reasons for getting here. SERVPROXIDE is one of them.
When you're the number 1 cleaning and restoration company, there are many reasons for getting here. SERVPROXIDE is one of them. SERVPRO of Leavenworth and NW Wyandotte County only uses SERVPRO approved products so you always know you are getting the best product for whatever kind of loss you might have at your commercial or residential property. SERVPROXIDE is an excellent example of SERVPRO's standards for cleaning products as it has many great properties. It is perfect for disinfecting surfaces as it can kill harmful bacteria, viruses, and mold. SERVPROXIDE is also EPA registered. This product carries the EPA's lowest toxicity rating making it safe for everyday use. SERVPROXIDE is also safe for the environment as it is a 100% biodegradable surfactant. SERVPRO of Leavenworth and NW Wyandotte County is happy to answer any questions that homeowners and business owners might have. So feel free to ask at any point during the cleanup of your loss.
Preparing the Next Generation
Disaster Master prepares kids for all events
SERVPRO of Leavenworth and NW Wyandotte County knows the importance of continuing education when it comes to disaster awareness. SERVPRO offers all kinds of classes to keep adults up to date and informed but it is also important to make sure your kids know what to do in the event of a disaster as well. By helping prepare your kids and set up a line of communication you will ensure that you are all as prepared as possible to stay safe during any kind of disaster. A great resource for helping them learn is Disaster Master, by Ready.gov. Your kids will learn the best ways to handle wildfires, tornadoes, hurricanes, blackouts, home fires, winter storms and extreme cold, earthquakes, thunderstorms, and more! Play now -> http://bit.ly/DisMas. They also get to print their own graphic novel at the end!
Preventing Water Damage
Always Use a Licensed Plumber
SERVPRO of Leavenworth and NW Wyandotte County has responded to all different types of water damage. From a frozen water line that bursts during our crazy Midwestern winter weather, to a refrigerator supply line leak, to a sump pump failure in a basement. When it comes to water damage some types of losses are unavoidable, but there are some times when you can take preventative measures to insure a loss does not happen to you. One of the things you can do is make sure you always use a licensed plumber! In the picture that goes with this blog you will see a very noticeable crack in the pipe. The two couplings on this pipe did not stop the crack from leaking sewage in the home. Hiring a professional with positive recommendations is always a good way to go to avoid this kind of loss happening to you.
Fire safety and prevention
SERVPRO of Leavenworth and NW Wyandotte County is here to help in the event of almost any kind of loss your might have at your residential or commercial property, including a fire loss. However, it is very important to us here at SERVPRO that you have as much knowledge available to you as possible in order to prevent all kinds of losses from fire to water to mold. In this blog post we are advocating for fire prevention and safety when it comes to accidental outdoor fires. Did you know that in 2018, 89% of wildfires were caused by humans. Yikes! Learn before you burn this fall and educate yourself on local rules and regulations for burning backyard debris. We all know fall is a great time for fire pits and friendly gatherings but make sure you are careful. Below are some tips to help you remain safe while using a fire pit.
- Make sure the fire pit is, at minimum, 10 feet away from any structure or neighboring yard—25 feet is preferable.
- Do not position a fire pit under a covered porch or low hanging tree branches.
- Always place a fire pit on a non-flammable surface, such as patio blocks or concrete.
- Do not put a fire pit on a wooden deck or directly on grass.
Preparing your home for winter storms
Preparing your home for winter storms before the weather hits
As all of us in the Midwest know winter weather can cause unforeseen damage to your residential or commercial property. Snow and ice storms as well as other issues can be a huge problem this time of year. Here are a few tips to avoid property damage this winter.
Protect your Pipes
Frozen pipes can cause major issues. When water freezes it expands. When frozen in a pipe it can cause the pipe to burst, water escapes and serious property damage can be had.
Make sure all pipes that are outside your home, near exterior walls or in unheated spaces are insulated.
Be sure to keep the heat on so pipes in other areas of your home don’t freeze. In extreme conditions open cabinet doors to let warm air under the kitchen or bathroom sinks.
Keep Gutters Clean
Make sure there is no debris in your gutters and they are attached securely to your home. Snow and Ice can build up in your gutter making them heavy and if not properly attached can cause damage by the weight pulling them down.
Ventilate your Attic
Making sure your attic is properly ventilated can prevent ice dams in the winter. An unvented attic can generate an excessive amount of heat. When the snow and ice melts it can refreeze along the edge of your roof causing ice dams to form. It can also lead to structural damage to exterior walls by getting into cracks and holes. When vented properly your roof can remain cooler through the winter and thereby avoiding potential ice dams from forming.
Cutting back dead tree limbs before winter weather is best. The weight of snow and ice can cause them to break easily and can cause damage to your roof, windows, vehicles and even people below.
Specialty Equipment for Water Damages
Some specialty drying equipment
Did you know SERVPRO of Leavenworth and NW Wyandotte County has all kinds of specialty equipment to help restore your residential or commercial property back to preloss conditions! Whether it is a fire, water, mold, or other kind of damage we have you covered. One specialty piece of equipment we have is pictured with this blog post and is called an Injectidry. In the picture we are using the Injectidry system to dry the hardwood flooring in a residential property after a toilet bowl cracked and flooded this beautiful house. Some people think when hardwood floors get wet there is no saving them but with this piece of equipment we were able to save the floors and save the homeowners from the headache of tearing out and replacing the flooring. The panels on the Injectidry can also be used to dry plaster walls and other dense materials.
SERVPRO Document Restoration
Did you know that SERVPRO of Leavenworth and NW Wyandotte County has the ability to restore damaged documents! Thanks to SERVPRO's wide net of specialists we are able to restore almost any document whether it is a photo or a whole filing cabinet full of information. Our SERVPRO team uses the same freeze-drying methods as the Library of Congress to dry historic documents and books. When disaster strikes, some of your most valued photos and documents could be lost forever, but we can help restore them to preloss condition! Although this is not a service we perform on site, we have the resources and contacts to send off your documents to professional restorers and receive them back in a reasonable amount of time.