Surviving the Dark: A Guide to Coping with Power Outages After a Storm
Power outages can be frustrating, protect your home and others incase of lightening.
Power outages during storms can be a common occurrence, especially in the Southeast region. While it may be inconvenient and disruptive, it's important to prioritize safety during these times. Being prepared and taking appropriate measures can help you cope with power outages and ensure the well-being of yourself and your loved ones. In this blog post, we will discuss safety measures to implement during power outages caused by Southeast storms.
Have a Well-Equipped Emergency Kit
Preparing an emergency kit in advance is essential for coping with power outages. The kit should include essential items such as flashlight(s) with extra batteries, a battery-operated radio, a first aid kit, a supply of non-perishable food and water, a manual can opener, and any necessary medications. Also, have blankets, warm clothing, and extra layers to stay comfortable in case the power outage lasts for an extended period or occurs during cold weather.
During a power outage, stay informed about the situation by listening to battery-operated radios or utilizing a mobile device with cellular data. Keep a list of emergency contact numbers readily available. Plan a communication strategy with your family or housemates to ensure everyone knows how to stay in touch and where to meet if separated during the outage.
Preserve Food Safety and electronics
When the power goes out, it's important to take measures to preserve the safety of perishable food items in your refrigerator and freezer. Keep the refrigerator and freezer doors closed as much as possible to maintain the cold air inside. As a general rule, food in a closed refrigerator will stay cold for about four hours, while a full freezer can remain cold for up to 48 hours. If necessary, consider using coolers with ice or storing food in a neighbor's refrigerator during an extended outage.
Using candles during a power outage may seem like a convenient option, but it can be a fire hazard. Instead, opt for battery-powered flashlights or lanterns to provide light safely. Keep a supply of extra batteries on hand and avoid using open flame sources indoors.
To protect your electronics and appliances from power surges when the power is restored, unplug them during the outage. This can help prevent potential damage to your devices and avoid electrical fires caused by power fluctuations.
Avoid Carbon Monoxide Poisoning
If using a generator during a power outage, ensure it is set up and operated correctly to prevent carbon monoxide poisoning. Generators should be placed outdoors in a well-ventilated area, away from windows, doors, and vents. Carbon monoxide is an odorless and colorless gas that can be deadly when inhaled. Never use a portable generator or any fuel-burning equipment indoors or in enclosed spaces.
Stay Warm During Cold Weather
Power outages during Southeast storms can sometimes occur during colder months. If you experience an outage during cold weather, take steps to stay warm. Bundle up in layered clothing, use blankets, and gather in one central area to share body heat. Consider using alternative heat sources such as a fireplace or properly vented propane heater. Ensure proper ventilation to prevent carbon monoxide buildup.
During a power outage, remember to check on elderly neighbors, individuals with disabilities, or anyone who may be more vulnerable. They may require additional assistance or support during this time. Offer to help them with essential tasks and ensure they have the necessary resources and supplies.
Power outages during Southeast storms can be frustrating, but prioritizing safety measures is crucial. By being prepared and taking appropriate measures, you can navigate power outages with confidence and protect the well-being of yourself and your loved ones.
Grill Safely: Top Tips to Avoid Fires When Grilling
Practice safe grilling to avoid a fire.
Grilling is an enjoyable outdoor activity that brings family and friends together to share sizzling hot meals. While it's a fun pastime, it can pose significant fire hazards if not done safely. Grilling fires can start and spread quickly due to factors such as grease buildup, overheating, and improper storage. In this blog post, we will discuss safety measures that can help you avoid fires when grilling.
Choose an appropriate location for your grill that is away from combustible materials like dry leaves, branches, and structures. Choose a flat, stable surface that can withstand the weight of the grill and will not tip over easily.
Clean your grill before and after each use to remove leftover grease and food particles that can start fires. If left uncleaned, grease can accumulate and reach high temperatures during cooking, causing flare-ups and fires.
Store your propane tanks away from direct sunlight, heat sources, and high traffic areas. Keep them in an upright position, secured tightly, and away from flammable materials.
Use a long spatula and tongs to turn the food instead of piercing it with a fork. Perforating the meat can cause the juices to leak onto the hot coals, resulting in flare-ups and potential fires.
Never leave the grill unattended. Grilling requires constant attention, so never leave the grill unattended. Stay close to the grill and keep children and pets away from the grill area.
Always have a fire extinguisher, baking soda, or a bucket of sand nearby in case of a fire. Never use water to put out a grill fire that started due to grease buildup as it can cause the flames to spread. Before turning on the gas grill, check the hoses regularly for leaks and any worn or damaged areas that can lead to leaks. If you smell gas or suspect a leak, turn off the gas immediately, and contact a professional for a repair or replacement. Preheat the grill before cooking, and avoid exposing the food to high heat initially. The flames can char the food or ignite flare-ups. Cook the food slowly and naturally to avoid fires.
In conclusion, grilling is a great outdoor activity that brings family and friends together. However, it's critical to follow safety measures to avoid fires. Choosing an appropriate location, cleaning the grill regularly, proper storage, appropriate tools, not leaving the grill unattended, being prepared, checking for leaks and wear, and cooking slowly and steadily are some of the safety measures you can take. By practicing safe grilling, you can ensure that you have a safe and enjoyable time with your delicious grilled meals without any mishaps.
Is Your Refrigerator Leaking? Signs to Watch Out For
Addressing a leaking refrigerator quick can help prevent kitchen water damage.
Refrigerators play a crucial role in keeping our food fresh and preserving perishable items. However, a leaking refrigerator can be a cause for concern. Not only can it damage your kitchen floor or surrounding areas, but it may also indicate an underlying issue that needs attention. In this blog, we will discuss common signs that indicate your refrigerator is leaking and what steps you can take to address the problem.
Puddles or Water Stains
The most apparent sign of a leaking refrigerator is the presence of water puddles or stains on the floor near the appliance. If you notice water accumulating around the base of the refrigerator or spreading to adjacent areas, it's a clear indication that something is amiss.
Wet or Damp Interior
A leaking refrigerator may result in moisture buildup inside the unit. Check the walls, shelves, and drawers for any signs of wetness or excessive condensation. Damp or wet food items can also be an indicator of a leak.
Ice buildup inside the freezer beyond normal levels can be a sign of a leaking refrigerator. When the water from the defrost cycle doesn't drain properly, it can freeze and accumulate, leading to excessive ice formation.
Moldy or Unpleasant Odors
Moisture from a leaking refrigerator can create a conducive environment for mold and mildew growth. If you notice a musty or unpleasant odor coming from your refrigerator, it could be an indication of a hidden leak and subsequent mold development.
While not directly related to leaks, unusual sounds like dripping, hissing, or gurgling coming from your refrigerator can be associated with a malfunctioning water line or a leak in the system. Pay attention to any unusual noises and investigate further if necessary.
Decreased Cooling Performance
A leaking refrigerator may affect its cooling efficiency. If you observe that the temperature inside the fridge or freezer is not as cold as it should be, it could be a result of a leak impacting the overall functionality of the appliance.
If your refrigerator has a water dispenser, a leak in the water line can cause problems. Check for water dripping from the dispenser or difficulty in obtaining water, as these issues may be linked to a leaking refrigerator.
Inspect the Water Supply Line
Check the water supply line at the back of the refrigerator for any cracks, loose connections, or signs of damage. Tighten or replace the line as necessary.
Clear Blocked Drain Tube. A clogged or frozen drain tube can cause water to back up and leak inside the refrigerator. Clear any blockages using a pipe cleaner or warm water to restore proper drainage.
Check the Door Seal
Faulty door seals can allow warm air to enter the refrigerator, leading to excess condensation and potential leaks. Inspect the seals and replace them if they are damaged or worn out.
Clean and Defrost the Freezer. Excessive ice buildup in the freezer can be a result of a leaking refrigerator. Turn off the unit, remove any food items, and allow it to defrost. Clean the freezer and ensure proper drainage after defrosting.
Seek Professional Help
If you're unable to identify or fix the source of the leak, it's advisable to contact a professional appliance repair technician. They have the expertise to diagnose and resolve complex issues associated with leaking refrigerators.
Detecting and addressing a leaking refrigerator in its early stages is essential to prevent further damage to your appliance and surrounding areas. By recognizing the signs of a leak and taking appropriate action, such as inspecting water supply lines, clearing blockages, and seeking professional assistance if needed, you can maintain the functionality and longevity of your refrigerator while avoiding potential water damage headaches.
Beyond Sandbags: Exploring Innovative Alternatives for Effective Flood Protection
Flood barriers are designed to create a barrier to keep rain water from rising and flooding your property.
Sandbags have long been a traditional method for flood protection, but they come with limitations and drawbacks. Thankfully, advancements in technology and innovative solutions have brought forth alternatives to sandbagging that offer more efficient and effective flood protection. In this blog post, we will explore several alternative methods that can provide reliable flood mitigation, ensuring the safety of communities and properties in flood-prone areas.
Flood Barriers and Water-Activated Flood Bags
Flood barriers are designed to create a temporary barrier against rising waters. These barriers come in various forms, such as water-activated flood bags. These bags are lightweight and easy to store, expanding and filling with water upon contact. They create a strong and reliable barrier that can be stacked to the desired height, providing an effective alternative to sandbags. Additionally, flood barriers can be made of durable materials like aluminum, steel, or high-density plastic, offering reusable and long-lasting protection.
Inflatable Flood Barriers
Inflatable flood barriers have gained popularity as a convenient and efficient alternative to sandbagging. These barriers can be quickly deployed and inflated using compressed air or water. Made of robust materials, they form a sturdy barrier against floodwaters. Inflatable flood barriers can be customized to fit specific areas and are easily deflated and stored after use. They offer rapid deployment, versatility, and the ability to protect larger areas with fewer resources.
Flood Gates and Flood Panels
Flood gates and flood panels provide an effective means of flood protection for entrances, doors, and vulnerable openings in buildings. These barriers are typically made of durable materials like aluminum or steel and can be quickly installed when a flood event is anticipated. Flood gates can be hinged or sliding, creating a watertight seal when closed. Flood panels are removable and can be stored until needed. These solutions provide targeted protection for buildings, preventing flood water infiltration through entry points.
Flood Bags and Water Absorbent Materials
Innovative flood bags and water-absorbent materials offer an alternative approach to sandbagging. These bags are filled with super-absorbent polymer crystals that expand upon contact with water. The bags act as barriers, absorbing and containing water, thereby reducing the risk of flooding. This method is particularly effective in smaller-scale flooding scenarios or for localized protection around critical infrastructure.
Flood Control Systems
Advanced flood control systems incorporate technology and engineering to provide comprehensive flood protection. These systems can include flood barriers, gates, sensors, and automated controls. They utilize real-time data to detect rising water levels and automatically deploy flood protection measures. These systems are often used for critical infrastructure, such as pumping stations, power plants, and wastewater treatment plants, providing reliable and automated flood mitigation.
Sandbags have long been relied upon for flood protection, but they come with limitations and drawbacks. Fortunately, alternative methods and technologies offer more efficient and effective solutions for flood mitigation. From water-activated flood bags and inflatable barriers to flood gates, panels, and advanced flood control systems, these alternatives provide reliable protection, ease of deployment, and improved durability. Embracing these innovative alternatives can enhance flood preparedness, safeguard communities, and minimize the impact of flooding on properties and infrastructure.
Will Mold Go Away on Its Own? The Truth About Mold Growth and What You Need to Know
Identifying mold and preventing it from further damage to your property.
Mold is a type of fungus that grows in damp, warm environments. It can be found almost anywhere, including homes, offices, schools, and other buildings. Mold can grow and leave secondary damages to your property. So, when you find mold in your home, it’s important to take action. But one question that often arises is whether mold will go away on its own.
Will Mold go away on its own?
The short answer is no, mold will not go away on its own. Once mold begins to grow, it will continue to spread and thrive until it is eliminated. Mold requires moisture and nutrients to survive, and as long as those conditions are present, the mold will continue to grow. In fact, mold can spread rapidly, so it’s important to address the issue as soon as possible.
Where does mold grow?
It’s also important to note that not all types of mold are visible to the naked eye. Mold can grow behind walls, under carpets, and in other hidden areas, so even if you can’t see it, there’s a chance it could be present in your home. This is why it’s important to be vigilant and take action if you suspect mold is present.
First step - Identify the source
If you do find mold in your home, the first step is to identify the source of the moisture. Mold cannot survive without water, so it’s essential to eliminate the source of the moisture in order to prevent the mold from returning. This may involve fixing a leaky roof or plumbing issue, improving ventilation, or addressing other factors that are contributing to the moisture.
Take steps to remove the mold
Once the source of the moisture has been addressed, it’s important to take steps to remove the mold. This may involve cleaning with a solution of bleach and water, or using a commercial mold remover. It’s important to wear protective gear, such as gloves and a mask, when cleaning up mold to avoid exposure to spores.
In some cases, it may be necessary to hire a professional mold remediation company to remove the mold. This is especially true if the mold has spread to a large area, or if it is present in a hidden location that is difficult to access.
In conclusion, mold will not go away on its own. Once mold begins to grow, it will continue to spread and thrive until it is eliminated. If you suspect mold is present in your home, it’s important to take action as soon as possible to prevent it from further damage to your property. By identifying the source of the moisture, eliminating it, and taking steps to remove the mold, you can create a safe and healthy environment for you and your family.
Steps to Take When Filing a Claim After a Fire: A Guide to Insurance Recovery
Filing a claim after a fire can help rebuild your property back to pre fire conditions.
A fire can be a traumatic and devastating experience, leaving your property damaged or destroyed. After a fire, it's important to file a claim with your insurance company as soon as possible to start the process of getting the help and compensation you need to rebuild and recover. Here's what you need to know about filing a claim after a fire.
Contact Your Insurance Company
The first step in filing a claim after a fire is to contact your insurance company. Most insurance policies require that you report any damage or loss to your property within a certain time frame, so it's important to act quickly. Your insurance company will likely assign an adjuster to assess the damage and determine the coverage amount.
Document the Damage
Before you start cleaning up or making any repairs, it's important to document the damage to your property. Take photos and videos of the damage from multiple angles, and make a list of all damaged or destroyed items. This documentation will help support your claim and ensure that you receive the compensation you're entitled to.
Secure Your Property
After a fire, your property may be vulnerable to further damage or theft. If possible, take steps to secure your property and prevent further damage. This could include boarding up windows and doors, removing debris, and hiring a security service to watch your property.
Keep Track of Expenses
If you're forced to relocate after a fire, keep track of any expenses you incur, such as temporary housing, meals, and transportation. Your insurance policy may cover some or all of these expenses, so it's important to keep accurate records.
Work with Your Adjuster
Your insurance adjuster will play a key role in the claims process. Be sure to provide them with all the necessary documentation and information, and work with them to understand the coverage and compensation you're entitled to. If you disagree with their assessment or settlement offer, you can appeal or negotiate for a better outcome.
Don't Wait to File
Finally, it's important to file your claim as soon as possible after a fire. The longer you wait, the harder it may be to document the damage and secure the compensation you need. If you have any questions or concerns about the claims process, don't hesitate to reach out to your insurance company or a professional fire restoration service for guidance and support.
In conclusion, filing a claim after a fire can be a complex and stressful process, but taking the right steps can help ensure a smoother and more successful outcome. Remember to document the damage, secure your property, keep track of expenses, work with your adjuster, and file your claim as soon as possible. With patience and persistence, you can recover from a fire and rebuild your property and your life.
What to look for to prevent a dishwasher leak
Prevent a water later by ensuring your dishwasher is in good working condition.
Your dishwasher may be leaking for one of several different reasons. The most common cause of leaks is a clogged drain hose or a cracked tub. You can check for these things by removing the bottom rack and looking at both ends of the drain hose.
Check water supply line
If you suspect that your dishwasher is leaking, look for a valve on the water supply line. If there is one and it's open, close it and then check for debris in the bottom of your dishwasher. If there isn't a valve, turn off power to your dishwasher by flipping off its breaker switch or pulling out its plug from an outlet (if possible). Then turn off water supply lines leading into your house by opening faucet handles until they're fully closed, if this doesn't work, call an electrician or plumber for help shutting down these lines permanently so that no more leaks can occur.
Check to see if the fill hose is connected to a water source.
To check if the dishwasher is connected to a water source, remove the drain hose from its connection point and see if there is water flowing through it. If there is not, then you have an issue with your plumbing or faucet, which will need to be addressed by a professional plumber.
If you can see that there is water flowing through the drain hose but nothing coming out of it when you open up your dishwasher door, this could mean that clogs have formed inside of both ends of your hoses. You'll want to remove these hoses from both locations before trying again. This time making sure each end has been cleaned thoroughly beforehand so as not introduce any more blockages into them.
Adjust the pressure switch on the back of the dishwasher.
The pressure switch is usually located on the back of your machine, but it could be in other places depending on your model. The pressure switch is usually a small plastic box with a simple dial inside it. To adjust this part, you'll want to turn the dial clockwise until you hear water rushing through your plumbing pipes or see steam coming out of them.
Level your dishwasher.
Make sure your dishwasher is level. If it's not, it may be leaking from the bottom. Check to make sure there's enough water in the dishwasher. If there isn't, add more until you hear a gurgling sound when you open and close the door (this indicates that all of the tubs are full). Inspect your connection between your faucet and drain hose to make sure they're tight by hand-tightening them if necessary--and then check again after running hot water through them for five minutes or so (it can help loosen up any corrosion).
Check for debris.
To check your drain hose, first remove it from the sink and examine it. Look for kinks or other obstructions in the hose that could be blocking water flow. Also look at the ends of your drain hoses, if they're cracked or have holes in them, you'll need to replace them right away.
If everything looks good with your drain hoses, move on to checking for leaks around their connections with other components. Leaks here can cause similar problems as clogs in your dishwasher's filters. If you suspect a dishwasher leak, give a plumber or the professionals at SERVPRO a call immediately to prevent secondary damages.
Equipment & Safety Precautions to use for Water Removal
Water damage can spread throughout your property quickly causing damages.
When you have water damage, the last thing you want to do is wait for it to get worse. You need someone who has the experience and knowledge to remove your water safely, so that way you can prevent further damage from occurring within your home or business. Here are some tips on how a professional will handle any flooding situation:
The process begins with a professional inspection of the affected area. They will determine if the water is safe to remove. If not, however, they will take safety precautions to ensure their safety and your safety as well.
Safety precautions include using a containment system to control the spread of mold and mildew. This includes keeping any materials within the room or area that has been affected by water damage so that it doesn't spread into other areas of your home or business. Also, they will use specialized equipment such as HEPA vacuums to clean up all sources of moisture which may cause additional damage if left unattended for too long after removing wet carpeting or wood flooring in order
to avoid potential health hazards from exposure during cleanup activities such as those where harmful chemicals may be present.
Removing Water Safely
Protecting the worker from injury or illness due to exposure. Rubber gloves are used to prevent contact with dangerous substances and materials. It is also important to protect the environment from damage caused by contaminants in the workplace and any chemicals that may be spilled during cleanup efforts. This includes keeping waste water out of storm drains and avoiding direct contact with food crops such as berries or vegetables that could be harmful.
Ensuring customer satisfaction by making sure all work areas are clean before leaving your property so nothing gets left behind. Make sure your home is safe while being cleaned up by using specialized equipment like vacuums (extractors).
Removing Water Quickly
Removing water quickly is important. If the water is not. cleaned up properly it can cause serious structural damage to your home or business. Professionals use submersible pumps and extractors to remove water from your home in minutes so that you can get back on track as soon as possible.
In addition, professionals use containment systems to control the spread of mold and mildew while they are working on removing the water from your property. They know how to protect themselves against harmful chemicals that could be present in the water, which means there will be no need for special equipment or safety procedures for any workers who come into contact with them during a job.
Water damage can spread throughout your property quickly causing damages. If you are in need of a restoration company, we are here to help after a loss. Give SERVPRO of Southwest Raleigh/Holly Springs a call today.
What is Biohazard?
Biohazards are biological materials that may be harmful to humans, animals, and the environment. They can be found in a variety of places, including laboratories and hospitals. Biohazard signs and symbols help alert people when they are in proximity with biohazards.
What are Biohazards?
A biohazard is any biological substance that could cause harm to humans or the environment. Biohazards include bacteria, viruses, toxins, and prions (which cause Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease). Biohazards can be found in laboratories and hospitals, but they may also exist outside of those environments.
Types of biohazards:
1. Bloodborne pathogens. These are microorganisms found in blood and body fluids. Examples include HIV, hepatitis B and C, and human T-lymphotropic virus (HTLV).
2. Infectious material. This can be infectious to humans or animals, but not both. Examples include bacteria, viruses (including influenza), fungi and prions that cause diseases such as Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease
For a substance to be considered a biohazard it must meet all four of these requirements:
- Be pathogenic (capable of causing harm)
- Be transmissible by direct or indirect contact with an infected individual or contaminated object/material; this includes droplets in the air from sneezing or coughing
- Have the potential capacity to cause death if untreated
- Must be able to cause serious illness/injury if misused
The biohazard symbol is a triangle with a line through it. It's used to warn people that there is a risk of infection from hazardous materials or bacteria. You may see the biohazard symbol on containers of hazardous materials, in places where there are dangerous amounts of blood-borne pathogens (bacteria that cause diseases when transmitted through contact with blood or other bodily fluids), and in laboratories where potentially infectious materials are being handled, stored, and disposed of safely.
Biohazard signs are used to warn people of the presence of biohazards. This means that these kinds of biohazard signs are used to warn people of the presence of infectious agents. The most common types of infectious agents include bacteria, viruses, fungi, and parasites. These types of infectious agents can be found in food products and plants as well as in animals and humans.
Biohazard is an exciting new product that will revolutionize the medical field. It offers a safe and efficient way of handling infectious waste and other hazardous materials, such as contaminated equipment or clothing. Biohazard is made from organic ingredients that are completely biodegradable and safe for use around humans and animals alike!
What Happens To Building Materials When Wet?
Flooring warped by water
What To Do About Wet Building Materials
When a water loss occurs in your Raleigh, NC home or business, you want to know that your building materials are safe. It's our job to prevent damage to your property and belongings, but we also want you to understand how each material is affected by water.
One of the most common questions we hear when we talk to our customers is "What happens to building materials when they get wet?" The answer depends on the material and its condition. Let's take a look at what can happen to wood, concrete, drywall, finished wood, and the supporting structure when water enters your building.
Wood has a moisture content called MCF (moisture content). When wood absorbs water, it swells and loses strength. This can also cause warping or splitting depending on how much moisture is absorbed by the wood.
Wood can be saved or it can need to be replaced. Dry wood will shrink back to its original size and shape, but if it is left too wet for too long, the wood will swell and may need to be replaced. To save your wood furniture, place it in an area with good airflow and keep it there until the moisture has evaporated.
Concrete tends not to absorb significant amounts of moisture from water damage events, so it's less likely than other materials to see any significant damage.
The drywall product is made from sheets of paper covered with a gypsum plaster mix that is pressed between two pieces of wood, one on each side. When wet, this mixture will deteriorate quickly, but if it’s dried out within 24 to 48 hours it will be just fine. Drywall loses its paper but the gypsum board can be dried and saved. No need to replace it at all!
When finished wood such as cabinets and hardwood floors are exposed to moisture, they can swell. This can cause them to warp, crack, split and peel. In some cases, it may be necessary to remove and replace these materials altogether:
- Cabinets can be removed from their baseboards and walls if they show signs of damage or if they're simply too damaged to repair. New cabinets may need to be custom-made by a qualified contractor in order to fit properly into existing openings (which will likely have been slightly altered from water damage). The good news is that once new cabinets are installed, you can use the same hardware on them as your old ones for a seamless transition into your new space!
- Flooring that has been warped by water damage should be removed as soon as possible so it doesn't continue warping even more over time—and potentially create cracks between boards that could allow insects or vermin access into your home's interior walls later down the road!
The Supporting Structure
The supporting structure of your home, the studs, joists, and sill plates, can remain intact. The studs and joists may be covered with drywall or other building materials on both sides of the studs. In some cases, they are only covered on one side with a layer of wood or metal trim. The sill plate is often covered by flooring material such as carpet or hardwood floors. The drywall will help to keep moisture out of those areas even though it doesn't always prevent water from entering the space between the insulation and studs/joists (as long as there isn't significant damage).
The Professionals Can Help
No matter the size of your building materials, we can help. Our equipment is designed to mitigate the damage to all of your building materials during a water loss. This means that you will get far more value out of your investment than if you went with any other company in town.
If you’re ready to work with people who care about restoring your property just as much as you do, then call SERVPRO of Southwest Raleigh/ Holly Springs today.