Thunderstorms, also known as electrical storms or lightning storms, are common in the Midwest. If you find yourself caught in the middle of a storm, here are some tips to stay safe while you weather the storm:
- When thunder roars, go indoors! If you're outside when you hear thunder, try to get inside, in a car, or if nothing else, find shelter nearby.
- Pay attention to alerts and warnings.
- Avoid using electronic devices and appliances connected to an electrical outlet due to the possibility of electrical surges.
- Avoid running water.
- Do not drive through flooded roadways. Just six inches of fast-moving water can knock you down, and one foot of moving water can sweep your vehicle away.
- Pay attention to authorities and weather forecasts for information on whether it is safe to go outside and instructions regarding potential flash flooding.
- After the storm, be on the lookout for fallen power lines and trees and report them to authorities immediately.
How to prepare for thunderstorms
Spring can bring lots of rainy weather and thunderstorms. Here are our top tips on how to prevent water damage and ensure your safety.
To keep your property safe:
- Keep up with your home maintenance- replace missing shingles and loose siding to prevent water from leaking in and damaging your home.
- Check your sump pump- make sure it is in working order to prevent basement flooding.
- Check for loose fence posts- anything that's not secured can be blown into your house by the wind and cause damage.
- Trim your trees- make sure dead branches are removed to prevent them falling on your home or car.
- If bad thunderstorms are in the forecast, have a generator on hand for the event of a possible power outage and prepare and emergency kit with flashlights, batteries and a first aid kit.
To keep you safe:
- Check the forecast- be aware if a bad thunderstorm is predicted for your area.
- When thunder roars, go indoors- try to get out of the storm and find shelter inside in the event of a thunderstorm.
- Stay dry- do not shwer, wash dishes or run water during a thunderstorm and avoid bodies of water.
After a fire causes damage to your home, we understand that you want to restore everything from your home to your possessions to "normal" as soon as possible. Here are some active steps you can and can't take following a fire
- DO make sure everyone in your family is safe, including all beloved pets.
- DON'T enter the fire-damaged structure until the fire department deems it safe.
- DO document the damage with pictures once you have permission to reenter the home.
- DON'T turn on gas, water or electric utilities until a professional has deemed them safe.
- DO call insurance and utility providers to inform them of the fire.
- DON'T wash smoke-damaged clothing yourself. This can set the smoke odors or stains and ruin them. Smoke-damaged clothing should quickly be taken to the dry cleaner.
- DO Call SERVPRO: If you experience fire damage, call the cleaning and restoration pros at SERVPRO to restore your home to its normal as soon as possible.
How to prevent flooding in your home
As is the danger in every spring flooding is always a possibility as the snow melts and the spring showers roll around. Flooding is very dangerous for all homeowners if they are not properly equipped to handle the flooding. There are many different ways that you can handle flooding, but it is most important to know how to prevent it, and what actions you can take if you still experience flooding.
- Apply coatings and sealants. A form of "dry flood-proofing," coatings and sealants that you apply to your foundation, walls, windows and doorways help prevent flood water from leaking into your house through cracks.
- Raise your electrical outlets and switches. All outlets, switches, sockets and circuit breakers should be at least one foot above flood level to avoid significant electrical damage in the case of a flood.
- Install check valves on your pipes. Make sure that all pipes entering your house have valves to prevent a flooded sewage system from backing up into your home. Gate valves are preferred over flap valves, since they provide a better seal against flood pressure.
- Grade your lawn away from the house. If your lawn tilts toward your house, rainwater will pool around your home. Use a heavy soil that contains clay and sand to regrade your lawn so that surface runoff empties into an appropriate place, such as a street gutter.
- Leave space between mulch and siding. Wet mulch can rot your house's siding, which in turn can lead to leaks. Keep space between your mulch and siding so that the base of your house can completely dry after rainstorms.
- Point your downspouts away from your home. If your gutter runoff is not pointed away from your house in an appropriate direction, it can pool at the corners of your house and may eventually create leaks in your basement.
However these preventive steps are not full proof, and it is important to know how to handle flooding if it does occur.
How to Stop Flooding Once it Starts
- Turn off the water line, if that is the source of the flooding.
- Clear out gutters and drains so that water can flow freely.
- Use sandbags to block any gaps that will lead to flooding.
- Move rugs, furniture, electronics and other valuables to a higher floor of the home, or elevate them.
- Shut off your electricity at the breaker panel, if flood water is close to reaching your electrical system.
- If it's not raining, open windows to allow air flow through your home.
- Turn on your sump pump or use a shop vacuum to remove water as quickly as possible.
These measures will help minimize the damage that the flooding can cause.
For any flooding and water damage Call SERVPRO of Southwest Waukesha County at (262) 542-0900
Every mold damage scenario is different and requires a unique solution, but the general mold remediation process stays the same. SERVPRO of Southwest Waukesha understands mold and mold growth and has the training and expertise to remediate the mold in your home or business.
We carefully inspect your property for visible signs of mold. Mold feeds on cellulose and water and can be hidden from plain view. We use various technologies to detect mold and hidden water sources.
Our professionals use various containment procedures to prevent the spread of mold. We may use advanced containment procedures like negative air chambers to isolate the contaminated area with physical barriers and negative air pressure to keep the mold spores from spreading during the cleanup process. All fans and heating and cooling systems will be turned off to prevent the spread of mold.
Have Mold Related Questions? Call Us Today (262) 888-4180
Water Damage in Waukesha Home
Over the weekend our crew at SERVPRO of Southwest Waukesha County went to a job site that had water damage. The homeowner was out of town, but a neighbor was watching the house and discover that a pipe had burst. There was water all on the carpet and pad as well as the furniture in the room was damaged by the water.
Our crew discovered that there was more than water damage at this property; mold had started to grow on the wall and other content in the room
This is a reminder to shut off your water if you will be gone for a long period of time. You never know if a pipe would burst or a toilet would overflow while you are gone.
If you have any questions regarding this tip of the week, please call SERVPRO of Southwest Waukesha County at (262) 542-0900.
SERVPRO Offers Commercial Cleaning
SERVPRO® of Southwest Waukesha County offers large commercial cleans to help your business stay safe and clean. One of the most important cleans especially in this day and age is ensuring that your air ducts are are clean and free from harmful debris.
Odors and Air Quality
SERVPRO® of Southwest Waukesha County Professionals are experts at odor removal. We are trained to identify and eliminate offensive odors from the source, instead of trying to mask it.
If you haven’t had your air ducts or HVAC, give us a call to inspect your system. Duct cleaning is not always necessary but your HVAC unit could be circulating dust, pollen, and other debris around your home. Cleaning your unit will help improve the air quality in your home and can actually extend the life of the equipment. It also helps restore your system to peak efficiency.
For more information on these or any of our other cleaning services, check out our cleaning webpage or give us a call at (262) 542-0900 today!
Extension Cord Safety Tipes
Extension cords are one of the most commonly misused items in a home and at the office. To ensure safety use these following tips when using extension cords.
- Determine the correct wattage required to power the device and be sure to select the correct size of the extension cord. If connecting two or more devices, add together the wattage rating for all devices to prevent overload.
- Select the appropriate extension cord for using devices indoor or outdoor.
- Do not use extension cords that are cut or damaged. Touching the exposed strand of wire can give someone electric shock or burn.
- Be sure to unplug extension cords when finished using due to the cord will still conduct electricity until it is unplugged.
- Running a cord under carpet or across a doorway is unsafe.
If you have any questions regarding fire damage please call SERVPRO of Southwest Waukesha County at (262) 542-0900.
How to Minimize Hail Damage
SERVPRO of Southwest Waukesha County strives to put our customers at ease, guiding them and supporting them through the STORM emergency process while providing education and knowledge on how to best navigate the situation.
Hail storms can strike without much warning, leaving you with little time to react. Being prepared in advance and knowing what to do can help you stay safe while keeping damage to a minimum. Consider signing up for local weather alerts, which deliver warnings when hail storms are approaching your area.
How to Minimize Hail Damage
- Large hail can shatter windows. Closing the drapes, blinds or window shades can help prevent the wind from blowing broken glass into your home or buildings.
- Whenever possible, park your vehicles inside a garage or under a carport.
- Patio and lawn furniture can be dented, broken or even shattered by hail. Move these items indoors or under a covered area when not in use.
- If you have plans to replace the roof covering on your home or business, consider using impact-resistant material if you live in a hail-prone area.
Have any questions? Call SERVPRO of Southwest Waukesha County (262) 542-0900
We Specialize in Fire and Water Damage
A fire can be devastating to your home or business. After the fire trucks leave, your property will likely suffer from not only fire and smoke damage, but also widespread water damage and flooding from firefighting efforts. SERVPRO of Southwest Waukesha County has specialized fire and water damage restoration training and experience to quickly clean up and restore your home to pre-fire condition. They also can remove the pervasive smoke odor and deep-clean soot from upholstery and carpet.
Board-ups - In some cases firefighters may break windows and cut holes in the roof in order to vent the fire. It is extremely important to secure openings to your home or structure using sturdy, durable materials designed to protect it from both weather intrusion and intrusion by outsiders.
Types of Fire/Smoke/Soot
Wet Smoke – Plastics and Synthetics; Low heat, smoldering, pungent odor, sticky, smeary.
Dry Smoke – Paper and Wood; Fast burning, high temperatures, dry, powdery, non-smeary residues.
Protein – Virtually invisible, discolors paints and varnishes, extreme pungent odor.
Fuel Oil Soot – Furnace Puff Backs. Other Types – Tear gas, fingerprint powder and fire extinguisher residue.
What to do after a fire:
- Keep hands clean so as not to further soil upholstery, walls and woodwork.
- Place clean towels or old linens on rugs, upholstery and carpet traffic areas.
- If electricity is off, empty freezer and refrigerator and prop doors open.
- Clean and protect chrome with a light coating of petroleum jelly or oil.
- Wash houseplants on both sides of leaves.
What NOT to do after a fire:
- Don't attempt to wash any walls or painted surfaces or shampoo carpet or upholstery without contacting SERVPRO of Southwest Waukesha County.
- Don't attempt to clean any electrical appliances that may have been close to fire, heat or water without consulting an authorized repair service.
- Don't use any canned or packaged food or beverages that may have been stored near the fire, heat or water.
- Don't turn on ceiling fixtures if the ceiling is wet. The wiring may be damaged.
- Don't send garments to an ordinary dry cleaner. Improper cleaning may damage the garment further.
SERVPRO of Southwest Waukesha County has what it takes to restore your home back to preloss condition.
Have any questions? Call SERVPRO of Southwest Waukesha County (262) 542-0900