Recent Storm Damage Posts

Can Solar Panels Withstand a Storm?

7/20/2022 (Permalink)

Solar panel on a red roof Solar panel in a home in Loveland, CO.

Are Solar Panels Storm-Resilient?

If you are considering installing solar panels on your home, you may be concerned about the potential for panel damage caused by severe storms. Fortunately, most panels hold up well to storm damage.


Hail Damage
Large hail can cause roof damage and may be a concern for many homeowners who have installed solar power equipment. However, the panels are considered generally safe for several reasons:

A study by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory determined that the probability of a solar panel being damaged by hail is below .05%.
Manufacturers test their panels to ensure they can withstand extreme weather conditions.
Panels have been designed to absorb the impact of large hailstones without incurring damage.

Hurricanes
Anything attached to a home in an area that experiences hurricanes need to be able to withstand high winds. Most solar panels have been tested to ensure that they can withstand winds up to 140 miles per hour without suffering panel damage. If you live in an area that experiences hurricanes, check with the manufacturer of your panels to determine whether they have been tested to withstand high winds.


Rain
Rain that enters homes due to damage caused by storms can create a lot of damage and require the services of a water mitigation company in Loveland, CO. However, not only are most panels resistant to leaks, they often work more efficiently after a rainstorm because the rain washes away dirt, dust, and pollen that may accumulate on the panels.
Solar panel manufacturers know their products are designed to be used in environments where they will face frequent exposure to high winds, rain, and other extreme weather conditions. As a result, most solar panels are manufactured and tested to ensure they can withstand these conditions without suffering panel damage. Check with the manufacturer if you have any concerns about the ability of your panels to withstand weather conditions in your area before installing your panels.

3 Keys for Taking Care of Your Sump Pump

6/19/2022 (Permalink)

A sump pump installed in a basement of a home with a water powered backup system. A sump pump is a good insurance against water damage.

Three Tips for Maintaining Your Sump Pump

If your home in Loveland, CO, faces a water emergency it is good to have a working sump pump on hand. These devices can clear away hundreds of gallons of water in a short time, preventing water from flowing into vulnerable areas that have carpeting, furniture and other items. Of course, the unit won't be much help if it doesn't work when you need it. To avoid this, take a few simple actions before it is too late.

1. Read the Owner's Manual
Each pump is a little different, so taking a look at the manual is never wasted time. It should cover the essential elements of pump maintenance, such as replacing backup batteries and other components promptly. It will also cover safety concerns, including always using a quality cord and ensuring the unit is plugged into a working ground fault circuit interrupter outlet.

2. Check the Sump Pump Intake and Outtake
Home pumps are not overly complicated. They need the power to operate and suck water in and discharge it to another location. Make sure there is no material impeding this central function. If the pump does fail and water does overflow, you should consider calling a nearby water mitigation company. Trained technicians will arrive shortly and remove any standing water, dry out your home and address any other concerns.

3. Test the Device
By pouring in some water in the proximity of the pump, you can observe if it is working properly. The rising water should lift a float that activates the pump and then you should hear the sound of the unit at work. Water should flow freely through the device. If it doesn't, check to make sure the discharge pipe and vent hole are free of obstructions.
A sump pump is a good insurance against water damage. A few simple steps will make sure it operates as intended.

Are You At Risk for Flood Damage? Here's How To Prepare

5/11/2022 (Permalink)

Flood insurance form on a table with a book. It's a good idea to take out a flood insurance policy.

Steps To Prevent Flood Damage In Your Home

As a homeowner in Loveland, CO, you have a crucial role to play in preventing flood risk. Many people are not aware that most homeowners' insurance policies do not cover damage from floods. Because of this, you must take preventative steps to prevent flood damage in your home and ensure you have adequate insurance coverage, such as a FEMA NFIP policy.

What Does a Homeowners' Insurance Policy Cover?

A typical home insurance policy covers water damage if it is sudden and accidental. Examples include:

  • A pipe bursts, soaking and warping your wood floor.
  • Your water heater breaks and sprays the surrounding drywall with water.
  • During a thunderstorm, a limb falls on your roof, tearing a hole and letting rain in the house.

However, you need separate insurance for flooding damage. Home insurance does not cover an overflowing sewer drain on your property, a swollen riverbank, and poorly maintained pipes that corrode and leak.

Should You Get FEMA NFIP Flood Insurance?
You can check a flood map on FEMA's website to determine if you live in an area at high risk of flooding. If you do, it's a good idea to take out a flood insurance policy.
The FEMA National Flood Insurance Program is a federally-backed flood insurance program. It is available through private insurers to communities and states that enforce and adopt flood-plain management regulations. Call your agent to learn more or visit the FEMA website.

How Can You Prevent Flood Damage?
Some steps FEMA recommends to protect your home include:

  • Raising it above the base flood elevation
  • Installing a sump pump
  • Sealing your basement walls
  • Using flood-resistant drywall and insulation
  • Installing flood vents in enclosed places, such as garages and foundation walls

Sometimes, even the best preparation doesn't prevent damage. If you experience a flood, you can call a professional restoration company to help with remediation.
Flooding can do a lot of damage, but fortunately, you have ways to deal with it. Consult your insurance agent about obtaining a FEMA NFIP policy to protect your home.

Storm Damage Is Far More Than Flooding

4/14/2022 (Permalink)

Ceiling collapsed, debris on the floor Storm damage in Loveland, CO

Flooding Isn't the Only Problem Storms Cause

Major storm systems pose a serious flood damage threat to commercial buildings in Loveland, CO. Rising waters can devastate the foundation, valuables and overall structure, leaving proprietors with a great deal of sogginess. Owners, though, should be aware that storms have other hazardous impacts that demand attention. To minimize concerns, know the answers to the following three questions.

1. What Other Factors Should Owners Prepare For?
Storm damage is a broader category than flood trouble. A hurricane or thunderstorm can have intense wind speeds, capable of harming the roof and turning minor objects into projectiles. Roof shingles may be ruined, exposing the roofing to moisture. This isn't considered flood but water damage. Hail can also occur, creating bumps and holes in the roof.
Furthermore, external items such as furniture, branches or trees can slam into the walls, windows and doors, breaking glass and exposing the room.

2. What Exactly Falls Into Flood Damage?
As the rain pounds down, waters rise, possibly overflowing external bodies of water. Rivers, oceans and the sewer system all dangerous, pouring category three fluid into the premises. Floodwaters such as these can ruin property. The source of the exposure must come from the rise in the water and not the storm itself. Insurance companies examine these case-by-case. Storm complications leading to saturation would not fall under this category.

3. How Should Owners Handle These Events?
When flooding happens (whether it's storm-related or not), commercial owners should turn to professionals at a water and storm restoration company. These certified experts examine the space, test the walls and air and initiate mitigation efforts immediately. This phase is essential to ensure that excess fluid doesn't spawn mold and mildew growth and prepare an appropriate sanitation plan.
What may seem like flood damage might not be. If the water comes from the roof or a structural breach, it's likely to fall into the storm zone. Either way, it's important to act quickly to reduce secondary complications.

How Do Cleaning Experts Remove Flood Odors?

1/11/2022 (Permalink)

Thermal fogger, odor removal Homeowners will need to make plans to evacuate during ozone or fogging treatments.

Four Methods To Getting Rid of Unwanted Odors from Flooding

Flood odors can linger long after flood water has been removed and the affected area in a home has dried out. Some of the most common sources of smells include bacteria, mildew or mold growth, and the presence of sewage residue. These four methods can help to get rid of unwanted odors that may result from flooding.

1. Remove All Water

Start the mitigation process by getting rid of standing water and cleaning, disinfecting, and drying the affected area. Homeowners can start this procedure with brooms and buckets, but professionals can quickly pump out water to limit the extent of primary and secondary damage.

2. Clean and Disinfect

Cleaning and disinfecting the affected area can help to eliminate flood odors at the source. Keep in mind that porous building materials and contents may need to be removed and replaced. This is a common type of sewage loss, but one that is necessary to stop smells and mold growth.

3. Dry the Affected Area

Make sure the flooded portion of a home is dried as soon as possible. This can prevent mildew and mold from starting to multiply. Professionals may rely on commercial-grade air movers and dehumidifiers to increase airflow, draw out moisture, and promote faster drying.

4. Use Odor Reduction Methods

Restoration experts may recommend the use of specialized machines to eliminate every trace of odor. A HEPA air scrubber will remove small odor particles from the air. Specialists may rely on an ozone or hydroxyl generator, thermal fogger, or vapor modification system to neutralize stubborn odors. Homeowners will need to make plans to evacuate during ozone or fogging treatments.

Cleaning experts can recommend solutions for persistent odors resulting from flood water or mold growth. Homeowners can count on the specialized training and experience of water damage and odor mitigation professionals in Loveland, CO, throughout the cleanup and restoration process.

Storm Damage: How to Protect Your Business From Flying Debris

11/23/2021 (Permalink)

Ceiling collapsed in a building, debris on the floor Storm damage in local business in Loveland, CO.

How to Protect Your Business From Flying Debris

High winds produce flying debris which can cause property damage, like a roof leak or broken windows, and even structural damage, like a fractured wall. You can minimize the risk of flying debris by following the steps below.

1. Trim Trees and Clean Grounds

While high winds may result in a few missing shingles, the most significant damage is caused by flying tree branches and other miscellaneous debris. Therefore, all trees and bushes should be trimmed to minimize the risk of a damaged roof or structure. Additionally, you can police the property daily to collect any refuse, ensuring that it, too, does not harm your property in future storms.

2. Secure and Reinforce Exterior Objects/Decor

Exterior objects like signs, furniture and fences, should be secured and reinforced to minimize any potential property damage. Depending on the severity of the winds, furniture and fence posts can become projectiles in volatile storms. You can secure these objects by mounting them to cement slabs or, regarding fences, replacing loose boards and railings.

3. Convert Gravel Pathways and Landscaping to Dirt or Concrete

A roof leak is common after high winds, and the main reason is roof damage caused by flying debris. Loose gravel and rock are some of the most common elements of flying debris, and each material adds to the risk of property damage during high winds. Replacing gravel driveways and pathways with concrete or asphalt and converting rock beds to mulch will minimize your risks during wind storms.

4. Create an Emergency Action Plan

While you can take every preventative measure possible, nothing is guaranteed, and that is why you should have an emergency action plan in place. Restoration specialists from around the Loveland, CO, area help with this type of planning, and many even offer customized plans that take effect immediately following a disaster.

Wind damage can result in many issues like a roof leak or broken windows, but there are things you, as a business owner, can do to help protect your property. Trimming trees, policing the grounds and reducing risks through appropriate landscaping are all proactive ways of protecting your business from future high wind storms.

Common Reasons Your Home May Still Smell After a Flood

9/20/2021 (Permalink)

Sand bags as flood defense. Flooding can introduce sewage problems and mold growth that can cause bad smells to permeate your house.

Storm damage can affect your Fort Collins, CO, home for a long time. Making repairs to your house may not end the effects of the flood. Mold growth, for example, can be hard to get rid of once it is started. You may even notice an unappealing aroma after storm waters subside from your home. A residential water repair team can help you understand why these scents are still in your home.

Sewage

During storms, your plumbing may be at a higher risk of sewage loss. Your home could be filled with sewer water because of the following reasons:

• Broken sewer lines
• Overloaded sewage systems
• City sanitary pipe blockages

If this type of water-filled your space for any reason, it can be hard to rid your home of the overpowering sewer smell. To get rid of this aroma, you will need to have any affected parts of your house disinfected.

Fungus

Some flooding can also cause mold growth in your personal space. If this fungal growth is not spotted during the initial cleanup phase, you may notice a lingering musty smell throughout your home. In some cases, you may think the mold has been eradicated, but it may come back if any excess moisture is reintroduced. To get rid of this odor, you will need to find the source of the mold and have it professionally cleaned.

Water

Stormwater can reach unpredictable crevices in your house. If a pocket of water is not discovered during the cleanup, it can become stagnant and contaminated before it is found. This dirty flood water can start to produce an unpleasant smell. To get rid of this scent, you will need to find the remaining pockets of water, dry out the spaces, and clean or replace any damaged materials.

Flooding can introduce sewage problems and mold growth that can cause bad smells to permeate your house. No matter what caused the foul odor in your home, it is a good idea to have the scent addressed as quickly as possible.

Tips to Maintaining Your Sump Pump

7/27/2021 (Permalink)

A sump pump installed in a basement of a home with a water powered backup system. A sump pump will help ensure that your home is safe from flooding.

Suggestions for Keeping Your Sump Pump in Working Order

Though it’s one of the most important items in your home, you may not even think much about your sump pump. This critical tool works in areas of Loveland, CO, that have both high and low groundwater. It will help ensure that your home is safe from flooding, and it usually does its job without concern. However, like any appliance or system you have at home, it’s important to maintain this pump and ensure that it’s in proper working condition.

How Often Should You Check on It?

It may be easy to forget about doing pump maintenance, but you don’t want to go too long before you inspect it. You can do this yourself or have a qualified technician look at it.

• Inspect it at least once a year.
• Spring is an ideal time to maintain it.
• You may need to check on it more frequently if you have high groundwater.

Locate It

Unlike other appliances or tools in your home, you may not even know where to find your sump pump. If you’re not sure, look for the lowest point in your home, which will be in your basement or crawl space. Your home will never have a sump pump on the upper floor.

Check for Power

Your pump works on electricity, so it’s critical that electrical connection is sound and working as it should. Problems in the power connection are common reasons your pump may not be working.

Make Sure it’s Oriented Correctly and Pumping Water

If your pump is tilted or leaning to one side or the other, it won’t work effectively. Check to ensure it’s sitting straight. Also, you need to verify that it’s actually pumping water. To do this, manual pour water into the pump and see whether it discharges it.

You can’t afford to have sump pump problems in the event of a flood. If you follow these steps, you can keep it working smoothly.

Tips to Keep Your Business Operating During a Snow Storm

5/31/2021 (Permalink)

Weather Condition News Report Climate Forecasting Meteorology Temperature Concept Keep an eye on weather alerts and news.

Living in  Loveland, CO, you need to be prepared for a snowstorm, even if you don’t expect one to happen. Keeping your business operating depends on it.

Protect Pipes and Valves

Pipe damage is a common yet avoidable consequence of extremely cold weather. Properly insulating pipes and valves, such as a hose faucet on the side of the building, can save your business from one type of disaster, at least. A valve or pipe exposed to extreme cold without proper insulation is at a higher risk of making the valve or pipe burst. Not only would this mean extensive water damage to repair, but it would also mean replacing the pipes, all of which can get rather costly.

Arrange for Working at Home
Traversing across town in a snowstorm can be a nightmare. You don’t want your employees to have to risk life and property unnecessarily, but you also don’t want to shut down the business. One increasingly popular option is to set up your business in a way that employees are capable of working from home should the need arise. While this may not be possible with all types of positions, such as restaurant staff or construction workers, it’s certainly a doable workaround for staff whose jobs are mainly performed using computers and phones.

Keep an Eye on Weather Alerts and News
Because approaching storms and their trajectories can often be seen in advance, watching the news for weather warnings can provide a valuable lead time for making preparations you might not have otherwise thought of. Weather patterns can form and change abruptly, too, so check back regularly, especially during the winter or other times when seasonal storms are more likely in Loveland, CO.
When a snowstorm proves to be more than merely an inconvenience, professional storm cleanup may be necessary. Having a plan worked out in advance may save valuable time to get you back in business.

3 Helpful Tips When Creating Business Evacuation Drills

5/26/2021 (Permalink)

People escape to fire exit door It is important to communicate fire drill directions clearly.

Organizing a Fire Drill

A fire drill or evacuation plan is as essential to your Loveland, CO, business as insurance or an emergency restoration service at hand. It helps your employees make decisions that protect them. It is also a multilayered operation that must consider multiple factors and the perspectives of everyone in the work team. These tips can help you create a thoughtful and successful plan.

1. Consider Multiple Perspectives
Since your team works in different parts of your establishment, they will all have varying experiences when performing a drill. Some employees might have an easier time escaping via a specific route than others. Include representatives from each department to agree on a drill plan that benefits everyone. Additionally, employees with special needs might need additional assistance when evacuating, such as breathing equipment, wheelchair-accessible exits, and designated helpers. Ensure these resources are available to anyone who needs them.

2. Establish Clear Communication
Staff and clients need to act fast during a dangerous situation, so it is important to communicate fire drill directions clearly. The best way to direct evacuees towards safe locations is by placing signage that points towards the correct path and the eventual exit, in addition to alternatives if the main exit is blocked. Communicate these routes and practice them with the workers until they memorize them. Teach your employees other useful skills such as guiding others during the evacuation, using a fire extinguisher and reporting an incident.

3. Pace the Frequency of the Drills
Evacuation practices are meant to prepare your team against any emergency. While you might want to practice often, this decision can actually backfire. Excessively frequent drills can cause your workers to become complacent or bored. Also, you need time to identify potential areas of improvement and implement changes. Arrange for a healthy mix of announced and surprise drills.
Organizing a fire drill or any other evacuation preparation can be overwhelmingly complex, but it is necessary to keep your staff safe. Practices such as these can help you plan more effectively.

5 Tips for Commercial Roof Maintenance

11/16/2020 (Permalink)

Man cleaning and maintaining plastic guttering Clean your gutters regularly

Tips To Help Prevent Unwanted Roof Damage

Business owners have plenty of issues to worry about without having to add a leaky roof into the mix. Proper roof maintenance can help extend your roof's lifespan and save you hundreds in unnecessary repair expenses. Take a look at some of the following tips to help prevent unwanted roof damage for your building in Loveland, CO.

1. Hire a High-Quality Contractor.
Take the time to hire a great contractor and build a strong relationship with them. Damage can occur at any time, so you want to make sure that you have someone on standby that you can count on to help mitigate the issue.

2. Have Your Roof Professionally Inspected Bi-Annually.
In some cases, you might not even realize that you have roof damage until the problem spirals out of control. Having a licensed contractor inspect your roof at least twice each year can help you catch these small repairs before they evolve into larger expenses.

3. Inspect Your Roof After Severe Storms.
You should take the time to personally inspect your roof if your building has recently weathered a severe storm. Check for rain and wind damage in the form of broken or missing shingles, cracks or water spots.

4. Clean Your Gutters Regularly.
Your building's gutters are supposed to collect water that runs off of the roof and redirect it away from your building. When they become obstructed, that water can build up and run down the side of your building, resulting in water damage. In extreme cases, it can even begin to pool on the roof itself, weighing down the structure.

5. Avoid Pressure Washing.
Pressure washing seems like a good idea in theory, but it actually has the same effect as a severe storm. The heavy bursts of water can damage and tear away roofing materials. Additionally, it can push debris and water underneath the shingles, resulting in unwanted mold growth.
Taking the time to perform necessary maintenance checks can help you avoid having to deal with unnecessary roof damage in the future, and possibly even a complete roof rebuild. For more information or assistance, contact storm remediation professionals.

What To Do When Your Home has Hail Damage

10/23/2020 (Permalink)

summer rain with hail falls on the roof of slate Hail storm in Loveland, CO

Tips If You Discover Roof Damage

When a hail storm hits the roof of your home in  Loveland, CO, it's important to know what to do to prevent further problems while you're waiting for the professionals to arrive. Here are some tips to keep in mind if you discover roof damage during the next storm.

1. Find and Fix Leaks
When your roof is damaged by hail, it can often cause leaks. If you find a spot that is leaking or looks like it might, it's a good idea to put a tarp over it. Place a bucket inside under the leak to catch any water that sneaks through so that it doesn't further damage your home's floors and ceilings. Just don't forget to check it regularly to prevent it from overflowing.

2. Look for Signs of Smaller Leaks
If you can, finding weak spots that could quickly turn into leaks can help you protect your home from water damage. Look for pock marks, bare spots on asphalt shingles, cracks in slate or clay shingles, and scratches on metal roofs. These may be signs that there is a small leak, which can allow water to soak into your insulation and other elements of your home below, resulting in much more costly and intensive repairs. Place boards or tarps over the affected areas to add an extra layer of protection so that water doesn't make its way inside.

3. Inspect Your Home for Additional Damage
Hail storms can cause more than just roof damage. They can also bring wind damage with them, which means your siding, windows and gutters might be impacted as well. Make sure you inspect each of these, as even small cracks can quickly grow and create more problems. If you find leaks, place boards over them to protect the inside of your home.
If your home experiences roof damage from a hail storm, calling a storm damage remediation company is vital to making sure your home is fully repaired. Before they arrive, however, follow these tips to make sure your home is protected from any further damage.