Recent Storm Damage Posts

What to Expect During Storm Restoration

7/8/2019 (Permalink)

Storm Damage What to Expect During Storm Restoration Water removal in a Yonker, Ny home from storm water

What to Expect During Storm Restoration

If you have experienced water damage from a storm in Yonkers, NY, you may be wondering what happens next. You know that you need to have your home repaired, but what exactly will that entail? Here are a few things that you can expect to happen during restoration.

1. Water Removal

The first step of storm restoration is to remove any water that has built up in the house. The longer the water sits in the building, the worse the damage becomes. In order to save time and money during repairs, water will need to be removed quickly. If the water came from a flood, the area should be thoroughly cleaned and sanitized as well.

2. Tearing Out Damaged Materials

While some items may be able to be salvaged, workers may need to tear out damaged materials such as dry wall or carpeting. Particularly if it was affected by flood waters, these porous materials will be difficult to clean. It will be much easier and more sanitary to remove and replace them.

3. Drying the Building

After workers remove the water from your home and tear out any damaged materials, the house will need to be dried thoroughly. This will ensure that the damage will not worsen and will help prevent the growth and spread of mold. Open windows, fans and dehumidifiers can all help with this process.

4. Restoration and Repairs

The final step is to restore and repair the building. This can sometimes include extensive work such as rebuilding heavily damaged areas. Minor repairs such as repainting and replacing carpeting or tiles will happen during this step as well.
Whether you need to tear out and replace materials or only need some minor work done, a cleanup and restoration service can provide what you need. They have the training and equipment to return your home to its previous condition in a timely manner so you can back to your normal routine.

How To Avoid Business Power Outages

5/8/2019 (Permalink)

Storm Damage How To Avoid Business Power Outages Power outage in Scarsdale, NY area

Ways to Prevent Power Outages at Buildings

A power outage can happen at any time. Business and commercial property owners can take measures to maintain critical systems until the primary source of electricity becomes available again. Here are a few ways to prevent power outages at buildings in Scarsdale, NY.

Use Uninterruptible Power Supplies

A few minutes of backup power can protect systems from damage or data loss during an outage. An uninterruptable power supply is a power connector with a built-in battery backup that can be helpful during several scenarios:

  • Brownouts
  • Brief outages
  • Transitions from primary to secondary power sources

Most UPS models can sustain a 300-watt load for four minutes or a 150-watt load for about eight minutes. If battery levels run low during a power outage and no alternative power source is available, business owners should safely shut down systems.

Get a Generator

A generator can provide a secondary source of power. Depending on the energy demands of the facility, some business or building owners may prefer a portable generator or a standby commercial generator. Commercial generators are often multiple phase models, such as three-phase generators, whereas portable models tend to be single-phase.

Maintain a Fuel Supply

It is also important to stockpile a sufficient amount of generator fuel. Most generators run on one of four types of fuel:

  • Diesel
  • Gasoline
  • Natural gas
  • Propane

Building or business owners should factor in the availability and shelf life of each fuel type. Gasoline is readily available and has a shelf life of about 12 months. Diesel fuel lasts for 18 to 24 months. Liquid propane remains viable for decades. A natural gas generator can connect to an existing pipeline.

In addition to causing a power outage, a severe storm can also damage commercial buildings in Scarsdale, NY. Business and building owners should rely on certified restoration professionals to clean up and rebuild storm-damaged structures.

5 Steps To Take If Your Home Is Damaged in a Storm

4/25/2019 (Permalink)

Storm Damage 5 Steps To Take If Your Home Is Damaged in a Storm Ceiling damage from storm in Scarsdale, NY

Storm Tips

If you have experienced damage to your Scarsdale, NY, home after a storm or severe weather, there are many steps that you can take to be proactive in the situation. Instead of just waiting for assistance to come, follow these storm tips to help get your home back in order more quickly.

1. Call Your Insurance Agent

The first thing that you should do if your home has suffered storm damage is to call your insurance company. It is best to get started on your claim as quickly as possible because it can be a long and time-consuming process.

2. Contact a Restoration Service

Depending on the severity of the damage, you may need to contact someone to help with cleanup and repairs. Sometimes, your agent will give you information for a preferred damage restoration company.

3. Take Pictures

One of the most useful storm tips to remember is to take pictures. You can give these to your insurance agent to facilitate the claims process. Before moving anything, you should document any damage, both to your home and any affected belongings.

4. Move Property to a Dry Area

Once you have photographed the property, you should salvage any items that you can. If you allow them to sit in the water, it will be more difficult to restore and repair them later on.

5. Take Steps To Prevent Further Damage

If the storm damage is contained to certain areas of your home, you should block them off to keep the water from spreading to other areas. Tarps are a useful and effective way to do this. If any doors or windows have been damaged, those should be covered as well.

While it can be easy to panic during an emergency, keeping these storm tips in mind may help you stay calm. You can use them to get the restoration process off to a good start even before the specialists arrive.

4 Steps to Prepare Your Business for a Storm

2/14/2019 (Permalink)

Storm Damage 4 Steps to Prepare Your Business for a Storm Ensure your assets in Scarsdale facilities remain safe from water damage.

Severe weather conditions seem to make the national news on a regular basis. With the possibility of additional weather events including higher than average flood water, commercial property owners in Scarsdale, NY who prepare in advance can better protect their business and their customers. Ensure your assets remain safe from water damage by taking steps before you are faced with a hazardous situation.

4 Steps to Prepare Your Business for a Storm

1. Consider Flood Insurance

Insurance companies typically view flooding as rainwater that hits the ground in quantities. Many types of standard insurance policies do not cover rain-related damage. Flooding can devastate a business, leaving substantial cleanup costs and destruction in its wake. For companies that are not in a flood plain, flood insurance may be a cost-effective option.

2. Address Building Weaknesses

Flood waters move swiftly, and a flooded building can be dangerous. It may not be possible to take preventative action once the water begins entering the building. Consider what can be done in advance to protect items in key areas of the building:

  • Clear storm drains and gutters of debris.
  • Remove valuable items from the basement and store them elsewhere.
  • If there are fuel tanks, make sure they are securely anchored and up to code specifications.
  • Purchase a sump pump.

3. Safeguard Business Critical Data

Keep backup copies of crucial documents such as insurance policies, vendor information and emergency contact numbers. If possible, store them off-site to avoid water damage. Otherwise, put them in an area that is least likely to be impacted by flood water, such as a second floor or in a waterproof safe. Keeping the data safe can help restore business quickly.

4. Create an Emergency Plan

Disaster recovery planning can protect employees and guests during an extreme weather event. Flood water rises quickly, so having a documented plan in place beforehand can ensure everyone knows what to do in the event of a flooded building. Keep the contact information for water damage restoration technicians up-to-date. Address building and employee readiness and make sure there is a detailed evacuation route that can take people away from danger in flood conditions.

Flood Cut Demystified

2/14/2019 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Flood Cut Demystified Storm damage in Scarsdale homes can be devastating.

Having to deal with the consequences of flooding in Scarsdale, NY is devastating. You are probably wondering if it is possible to restore your house to its pre-damaged condition, if it is necessary to tear out some walls and what to do about contamination. A professional cleanup company can give you the answers you need and also tell you it might be necessary to make a flood cut.

Here are the answers to the two questions you likely have: what a flood cut is and how it works.

  1. What Is a Flood Cut?

 Having to do a flood cut means experts have to cut out some drywall from your home up to a certain height. The cut is usually made 12 inches above the flood line, just above the water line. The reason restoration contractors are removing part of the drywall, insulation and any other necessary building materials is to gain access to the framing and salvageable materials behind the water-damaged drywall.

  1. How Does the Flood Cut Process Work?

 After flooding, it is vital to start the cleanup process soon, as mold can grow within 24 to 48 hours of flooding. The first step is to mark the wall with a laser level, which ensures a clean job. Next, it’s recommended to put a tarp or something similar around where the cut is going to be made so the cleanup process goes faster. After that, technicians make the cut and assesses the situation behind the walls. If the water damage is higher than 12 inches, another cut needs to be made. It’s also important to pay close attention to the wiring and outlets and remove anything that needs to be replaced. What happens next depends on the situation, but usually, after removing the damaged materials, the contractor ensures ventilation to prevent mold growth.

After flooding, reach out to a restoration company ASAP. That way, they can make the flood cut, tear out the affected areas and prevent mold contamination.

4 Reasons To Have a Commercial Flood Policy

2/11/2019 (Permalink)

Storm Damage 4 Reasons To Have a Commercial Flood Policy Cleaning mold off the side of a building in Eastchester, NY

4 Reasons You Should Consider Taking Out a Flood Policy

Most general commercial insurance coverage excludes damage caused by flooding. The National Flood Insurance Program or an endorsement on a private policy can cover this type of damage. Here are four reasons why commercial property owners should consider taking out a flood policy.

1. A Business Is Located On a Flood Plain

The Federal Emergency Management Agency maintains flood maps that can help business owners determine whether a commercial building is located in an area prone to flooding. Most insurance providers define a flood as water damage that originates from outside water sources such as rain or rising bodies of water.

2. A Federally-Regulated or Insured Mortgage

Owners of property located in a flood zone with mortgages regulated or insured by the federal government are required to purchase and maintain flood coverage. Contact an insurance agent that offers NFIP policies or add a flood endorsement or rider to a general commercial insurance policy.

3. Owners Want To Be Prepared

If there is any reasonable risk of flooding at a commercial building, the owner of the property may want to obtain coverage for this peril. According to FEMA, the average flood insurance claim is approximately $33,000 and total property damage due to flooding tops $6 billion every year.

4. Mold and Other Secondary Damage

In addition to excluding flooding, most standard commercial property policies also cut out coverage for any secondary damage that results from this uncovered peril. Without a flood policy, it may be more difficult or prohibitively expensive to pursue mitigation and restoration. As a result, a structure may be prone to mold growth.

Property owners should consider these reasons to obtain flood coverage for a commercial property Eastchester, NY. This commercial insurance will apply to cleanup and restoration costs for primary damage and extend to secondary damage as long as owners do everything they can to limit damage.

How To Protect Your Business During a Thunderstorm: 3 Tips

8/23/2018 (Permalink)

Storm Damage How To Protect Your Business During a Thunderstorm: 3 Tips Snow storm damage in Tuckahoe, NY

When thunderstorms march across Tuckahoe, NY, they can cause serious damage to your business. Power outages, downed tree limbs and flooding from a torrential rain storm are all possibilities. However, there are several strategies you can use to protect your business and employees from harm when these storms appear.

1. Keep Your Lightning Rod Maintained

If your business is located in a tall building that may attract lightning, then maintaining the lightning rod can be essential. Have the rod checked annually for damage and ask your certification professionals to verify that it is up to code. If your business is located in an area where lightning is common, it is wise to have the unit cleaned and inspected at least twice a year.

2. Maintain All Trees on the Property

High winds can turn tree limbs into projectiles that may shatter your building’s windows and cause serious injury to your customers or employees. While trees can add aesthetic beauty to your property, take care to have them trimmed and maintained so dead branches do not detach and strike people entering your business below. Trimming trees away from your building’s power lines can protect its power source during a thunderstorm, where they might otherwise become entangled.

3. Have a Flood Plan in Place

A heavy rain storm can cause flooding, which can happen suddenly and cause a considerable amount of damage to your business. Having a flood plan in place can prevent this, especially in the case of mitigation services. Contacting a storm damage and flood cleanup service before the wet season can be a wise choice because if your building should experience flooding, you will have help on hand right away instead of trying to find it during a disaster.

Your Tuckahoe, NY, business can take a pounding during a rain storm that includes wind or hail. Knowing how to protect your employees, customers and property can give you an edge over bad weather, no matter when it might happen.

Storm Shutters: The Simple Investment That Could Save Your Home

7/28/2018 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Storm Shutters: The Simple Investment That Could Save Your Home Storm Damage in Scarsdale, New York

Sometimes it's hard to tell what preventative measures are necessary to protect your home from a natural disaster. However, high winds and hurricane damage in the past few years have cost Americans several billions, and unprotected windows can result in expensive damages:

• Broken windows
• Flooding
• Mold from water seepage

Is There Stylish Protection for My Home?

Thankfully there’s a simple solution to combating the effects of such damaging weather: storm shutters, which come in a variety of styles to fit everyone’s home décor (and budget):

• Accordion: Simple and straightforward to use, these manually folding shutters are available in strong materials like metal or polycarbonate.


• Bahama: This stylish variety not only provides protection from heavy rain and high winds, but also from the sun.


• Colonial: Protect your dream home with traditional blinds that frame your windows and add value to your property.


• Rolling: Prepare for a storm with ease with shutters that unroll or hide away at the press of a button.

How Do Storm Shutters Help?

All of these different options are permanent home fixtures that come in a range of materials, colors and designs. They’ll protect your home from flying objects, heavy rains and strong winds, so you won’t have to worry about damage to your windows or your home interior. Storm damage can be as minor as a few broken windows or as severe as flooding or mold.

Is There a Shutter for My Budget?

Most styles range between $15 and $30 per square foot of window area, or anywhere between $200 to $1,000 per window. While installing storm shutters may seem like a daunting task if you have several windows, being proactive about protecting your home from high winds in Scarsdale, NY, is extremely important and can save you thousands.

What if My Home Has Already Sustained Damage?

If your home has already sustained storm damage, contact restoration experts to ensure that it is thoroughly cleaned and restored. In the meantime, prepare for next season’s storms by investing in durable, protective shutters for your home.

For more on Scarsdale click here

Know the Difference Between Storm and Flood Damage

6/13/2018 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Know the Difference Between Storm and Flood Damage Storm flooding in Scarsdale, New York

With the rainy season beginning in Scarsdale, NY, it’s important to understand the difference between storm and flood damage so you can protect your commercial property appropriately. Two key differences can help you prepare your property ahead of time and understand what you can do now to prevent extensive damage.

1. Storm Damage Is Not Exclusively Due to Water

Property damage resulting from a storm is all encompassing. Yes, there tend to be rain and flood watches during storms, but there are other concerns that should be on your radar. Wind gusts can pose a threat to the structure, particularly when there are strong gales that are seen in tornadoes and hurricanes. High winds can also result in flying debris, toppled trees and structural damage in more serious cases.

Ensuring that windows are boarded and trees are planted a reasonable distance from the structure are smart practices to help prevent damage due to a storm. Also, routinely checking the roof and HVAC system to make sure they are sealed properly can prevent future storm damage as well.

2. Flood Damage Is Not Exclusively Due to a Storm

Commercial property owners tend to associate flooding with heavy rain storms. While those storms can play a large role in flood issues, there are other instances where floods can damage the office space. The plumbing can be a common culprit, so ensuring all pipe work is in the best possible shape and having proper sealants on pipes can help you avoid these types of flood hazards. Water damage from a flood can result in ruined carpeting and weakened floors or walls if the water stands for an extended period.

Understanding the difference between storm and flood damage will help you know all the risks your commercial property may face, as well as how to prepare. If your commercial space in Scarsdale, NY, does ever suffer harm from floods or storms, contact restoration professionals to make your space like new.

For more on Scarsdale click here

You can't plan on the damage, but you can plan for it.

3/21/2018 (Permalink)

On the first day of spring, we are on watch for the fourth Nor'Easter in a month. A reminder that our SERVPRO of Scarsdale / Mount Vernon team has a goal to keep your property safe and functional throughout the seasons. When you think of storm damage, your mind may automatically make the leap to flood waters and lightning strikes. However, storm damage takes many forms depending on the season. The most common wintertime culprits are: frozen pipes, wind damage, snow and ice and standing water. Standing water can be a result of either a burst pipe or snow and ice melt leaking through poor-quality weather stripping on your exterior doors. In any case, standing water may contain bacteria and promotes mold growth even in chilly weather. Identifying and handling each of these winter storm threats should be at the top of your list in the colder months. While each of these issues has its own level of severity, none of them are good for business for your commercial property, and all of them should be handled by a professional. Our team looks forward to continuing to serve our community. Sincerely, Traci Burrows, SERVPRO of Scarsdale /Mount Vernon. 

tburrows@SERVPROsmv.com

(914) 699-5181

Different Types of Storm Damage

2/12/2018 (Permalink)

Wind Damage Restoration

Hurricane damage sometimes includes severe wind damage. Roof damage in this situation may range from a missing roof, to harsh winds and rains shearing away asphalt tiles. Roof repair of obvious defects usually ensues in the wake of hurricane damage and storm remediation. Correcting roof damage may challenge homeowners after a disaster, since a roof leak may not appear obvious.

How can a roof leak and roof damage escape easy detection in this situation? Wind damage may loosen flashing, eventually causing another roof leak weeks after the storm. Even a subtle roof leak of this nature can produce damp, moldy conditions inside the home. Obtaining fast roof repair may prevent long term interior damage. A wind damage home restoration expert may assist clients in receiving comprehensive roof assessments and roof repair services when hurricane damage afflicts an area. Their expertise helps property owners address storm damage and roof damage more effectively.

Flooding And Recovery

Flood water frequently poses a risk in coastal areas. Yet heavy rains may cause river flooding miles inland also. If the surrounding terrain cannot absorb ground water, runoff contributes to flood water. Even residents of mountainous areas sometimes sustain varying degrees of flood damage if frozen pipes rupture. Flood pump failures contribute to basement flooding and contaminated ground water in some locations, too.

Flooding may disrupt municipal water systems. Experts need to assess ground water and evaluate the condition of pipes following flood damage. Hiring a storm restoration firm may allow you to begin your cleanup process even before water restoration occurs. (Cleaning before water restoration often proves essential yet challenging.) By relying upon a trained specialist, you'll usually obtain faster storm remediation. These experts may suggest ways to help mitigate flood water damage in the future, for instance, by requesting backup flood pump installation.

Visit http://www.SERVPROofscarsdalemountvernon.com for more information on storm damage.

Winter Weather Damage

2/12/2018 (Permalink)

Ice Damage, Hail Damage, Ice Damming And Restoration

Ice damage due to an ice dam sometimes creates losses.

From ice damming causing river flooding, to hail damage and burst frozen pipes, ice damage proves costly. Leaking frozen pipes and hail damage account for hundreds of thousands of dollars in repair bills annually, for example. When an ice dam contributes to river flooding, losses may increase significantly.

Storm restoration experts help homeowners address these situations.

For instance, these specialists may help prepare your home better to contend with flood water after ice damming. If an ice dam frequently causes a nearby river to overflow, the expert may recommend you install a backup flood pump in your basement. (Ice damming occurs infrequently, yet an ice dam represents a serious threat in some locales.) The local water supplier may shut off water temporarily while evaluating frozen pipes and ground water; let a storm damage expert help you address storm restoration cleanup and flood pump evaluation as you await water restoration.??

Comprehensive Assistance

From obtaining speedy roof repair services to documenting hail damage claims and promoting more rapid cleaning in advance of water restoration, home restoration specialists assist customers. They help expedite wind, flooding and ice damage repairs!

Visit http://www.SERVPROofscarsdalemountvernon.com for more information on storm damage.

Will Global Warming Impact Residential Storm Damage Restoration?

9/21/2017 (Permalink)

Some experts surmise Global Warming may increase instances of severe storm damage.

River flooding, hurricane damage and other problems left by natural disasters in coming decades. If these predictions prove correct, Americans will likely witness an increasing need for home restoration services and storm remediation. This new field already helps many households struggling with the aftermath of storm damage.

Hiring a full-time storm restoration firm usually assists property owners in recovering from the damaging impacts of adverse weather systems. This article will address a few types of situations in which home restoration companies furnish valuable services during storm remediation. If you or a loved one sustained losses from wind damage, flooding, or other weather-related impacts, you can ask a home restoration specialist to help you alleviate long term property damage.

Visit http://www.SERVPROofscarsdalemountvernon.com for more information on storm damage.

Support the American Red Cross in Hurricane Harvey Relief

8/30/2017 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Scarsdale/ Mount Vernon proudly supports the efforts of the American Red Cross. Last week Hurricane Harvey made a severe impact in Texas displacing thousands of people and creating a lot of dangerous situations. The Red Cross is providing thousands of meals and resources for those in need and we encourage to donate anything you can to help support their efforts. 

DONATE HERE

https://www.redcross.org/donate/cm/SERVPROindustries-pub 

Most of the danger is from flooding right now and we are hoping the water levels go down as soon as possible. Please join us in our thoughts and prayers as we lift up the people of Texas in this time. Many SERVPRO's across the country have mobilized to begin helping with the restoration process. Again we thank the Red Cross for all of their hard work.  

Severe Wind & Weather cause flooded basements in Scarsdale 10583

6/9/2016 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Severe Wind & Weather cause flooded basements in Scarsdale 10583 Our certified, background checked staff will do everything that we can to save a client's flooring and carpeting; It helps if we get in in first 48!

Wild winds and storms since Sunday knock down trees and power lines, causing flooding flooring and failed sump pumps in Scarsdale, NY 10583

You know all about sump pumps, if you have a basement in a Scarsdale, NY home or business, in southern Westchester.  

If a power outage from a rain or snow storm has ever shut down your sump pump and flooded your basement, you may have been a little worried this weekend and during monsoon rains yesterday.  

Our days of heavy rain and big wind gusts could have caused a power outage, or a brown out in your Scarsdale neighborhood.  So, be sure to check your basement and that your pump is on and any dehumidifiers are on and working.

That's as we get through this stormy, windy week.  This is especially important in older homes in the LowerHud, like our 1898 Colonial in Westchester, NY.

Homes with below ground basements and "ground water rise" through a cement floor or "slab," are inclined to flood.  This makes the fun of finished basements or a clean, safe lower level for the kids' playroom or a media room very difficult in southern Westchester...ahhh!

 If certified restoration companies like ours are called in soon, within the first 48 hours -- like that TV show -- we can usually save carpet and flooring!

When the power goes out in an electrical, wind or summer storm -- even "microbursts" like this Thursday that dumped inches of rain in just hours --  it's always wise to keep an eye on your sump pump and power.

If you have valuables, carpeting, drywall rooms and holiday decorations that are not on shelves or in plastic storage containers, check on all when we have these June storms.  Of course, if you have a nice, finished space downstairs, make sure the carpet is not wet and check flooring!

Severe summer storms have been the norm for decades, but we can tell you that they are getting more severe each year because we get more emergency calls for flooding at this time of year.  

We all stress out when the power is out, so channel that energy into checking that all of your electrical systems, dehumidifiers and pumps are on and working, especially after heavy rains and snow melt!  If it breaks, or you cannot reset it, then call your plumber.

Meantime, a restoration company may have to come in and help extract the water, or "mop up."   Usually, your insurance will cover a sump pump power failure because it's often considered a "mechanical failure," especially if the power is knocked out.  

Restoration companies usually work directly with insurance companies and take photos, document the whole process for your Claims folks, uploading them to support your insurance claim.  Mainly, we try to prevent MOLD!

Did you know nearly 60% of homes in the U.S. have some sort of underground wetness or water damage?

These basements will usually flood again, at some point, but it's really important to dry and disinfect your flooring, to prevent further damage and even mold growth later on.  

Usually your carpet can be saved and wood floors, if you call us in "the first 48."  But, the padding should usualy get tossed out in a basement or "grey water" flood situation.

Most home and property owners believe that this only happens when there is a large amount of rainfall or water rising up in your area and affecting your home or business / building.  

However, a small amount of water can indeed cause a large amount of problems. In fact, it takes very little time and very little water to create that mildew smell and, later on, harmful mold issues. 

No one can guarantee that your sump pump will work 100% of the time and never fail, but, here are some ways to increase the chances that it will work.

Causes of Failure

Some common causes of sump pump failure include electric power outage, wrong size of sump pump installed, improper installation, switch/float arm problems, or lack of maintenance:

Have your plumber check your sump pump and functions at least once per year, while they are looking at your boiler, HVAC unit(s) and or hot water heater.  That's what they do and a plumber visit is a lot more economic than an insurance deductible and replacing ruined flooring, walls and belongings.  Just sayin'...

What You Can Do

Hire a certified and qualified plumber to install and maintain your sump pump annually.  If you’re installing a pump, following the manufacturers instructions very carefully is crucial.

If you’re not familiar with sump pumps and have never installed one, it’s probably best to hire a professional to properly install it. You may not want to fork out the installation fee, but we guarantee it’s a lot cheaper than paying for water damage when your basement floods.

Other suggestions  

A professional will know what size pump is necessary for your home and also make sure the switch is working like it should. You can’t control power outages, but you can be prepared for them. Having a generator ready to go as a backup power source can save the day… and a lot of money. Like any mechanical device in your home, maintenance is key. It’s important to check your sump pump regularly to make sure it’s functioning properly.

Easy Maintenance Tips

  • Either quarterly or at least 2x per year, clean your sump pump, run a vinegar solution through it. This will free up any small pieces of debris and help the pump run more efficiently. You can do this yourself, but if there is a serious problem, call a professional.
  • Check the sump pump’s float switch. If this is restricted, it will not kick on when there’s a flood.
  • Clean all vents and air holes so your sump pump can run like it should.

Last, most sump pumps will last about 10 years, according the the U.S. Department of Housing and Development.  If your sump pump gets regularly maintenaned, you could increase this to 10-15, or even 20 years. Our recommendation is to check your sump pump regularly and consider purchasing a generator, if you don’t already have one.

We hope this sump pump info. helps, as calls are coming in, after trees fell on power lines last night.  Welcome to Summer 2016 and the start of Hurricane Season...was the monsoon rain part of Tropical Storm Colin pass by us in the Atlantic.  Will check and be on the lookout for my annual hurricane watch blog.  

Stay safe...from all of us at SERVPRO of Scarsdale...!  Cheers!

Severe Sunday Storm Cuts Power to some Sump Pumps, Causing Flooded Basements in Bronxville NY 10708

6/7/2016 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Severe Sunday Storm Cuts Power to some Sump Pumps, Causing Flooded Basements in Bronxville NY 10708 A sump pump failed in a Bronxville office building in their basement, near a storage area. The client called a plumber and we dried up afterwards.

Wild wind gusts on Sunday cut power to some sump pumps, causing flooded basements in Bronxville, NY 10708

You know all about sump pumps, if you have a basement in a Bronxville or area home or business, in southern Westchester County, NY.  The main road is called Pondfield for a reason!  

If a power outage from a rain or snow storm has ever shut down your sump pump and flooded your basement, you may have been a little worried this weekend.

Severe storms on Sunday evening took down trees, branches, power lines and electricity to some of us by 9pm. 

These big wind gusts could have caused a power outage, or a brown out, so be sure to check your basement and make sure the pump is on, as we greet this sunny week ahead.  

This is especially important in our older homes in the LowerHud, like our 1898 colonial that we've renovated -- it's for sale everyone!  Homes with below ground basements and "ground water rise" through a cement floor or "slab," are also inclined to flood, even without a sump pump in play.

This makes our having a finished basement or clean, safe lower level difficult in southern Westchester...ahhh!  When the power goes out in an electrical, wind or snowstorm, or even summer storms and "microbursts," like that April rainstorm, it's always wise to keep an eye on your sump pump and power.  

So, carefully check those basements, but do not walk in rising water because it could cause an electrocution.  This is especially true in your Bronxville home or a business, with storage and materials stored in our basements.  

We all stress out when the power is out, so channel that energy into checking that all of your electrical systems, dehumidifiers and pumps are on and working, especially after heavy rains and severe weather, like Tropical Storm Colin!  If your sump pump or other system will not reset, then call your plumber.  

Meantime, a restoration company may have to come in and help extract the water, or "mop up."   Usually, your insurance will cover a sump pump power failure because it's considered a "mechanical failure."  We work directly with insurance companies and take photos, document the whole process...mainly, Preventing MOLD!

Did you know nearly 60% of homes in the U.S. have some sort of underground wetness or water damage?  This can lead to mold growth quickly or over time, depending on your humidity levels in a lower level.

These basements will usually flood again, at some point, but it's really important to dry and disinfect your flooring, to prevent further damage and even mold growth later on.  Usually your carpet can be saved and wood floors, if you call us in "the first 48."  But, the padding should usualy get tossed out in a basement or "grey water" flood situation.

Most home and property owners believe that this only happens when there is a large amount of rainfall or water rising up in a home.  

However, a small amount of water can indeed cause a large amount of problems. In fact, it takes very little time and very little water to create that mildew smell and, later on, harmful mold issues.

No one can guarantee that your sump pump will work 100% of the time and never fail, but, here are some ways to increase the chances that it will work.

Causes of Failure

Some common causes of sump pump failure include electric power outage, wrong size of sump pump installed, improper installation, switch/float arm problems, or lack of maintenance.

What You Can Do

Hire a certified and qualified plumber to install and maintain your sump pump annually.  If you’re installing a pump, following the manufacturers instructions very carefully is crucial.

If you’re not familiar with sump pumps and have never installed one, it’s probably best to hire a professional to properly install it. You may not want to fork out the installation fee, but we guarantee it’s a lot cheaper than paying for water damage when your basement floods.

Other suggestions  

A professional will know what size pump is necessary for your home and also make sure the switch is working like it should. You can’t control power outages, but you can be prepared for them. Having a generator ready to go as a backup power source can save the day… and a lot of money. Like any mechanical device in your home, maintenance is key. It’s important to check your sump pump regularly to make sure it’s functioning properly.

Easy Maintenance Tips

  1. Either quarterly or at least 2x per year, clean your sump pump, run a vinegar solution through it. This will free up any small pieces of debris and help the pump run more efficiently. You can do this yourself, but if there is a serious problem, call a professional.
  2. Check the sump pump’s float switch. If this is restricted, it will not kick on when there’s a flood.
  3. Clean all vents and air holes so your sump pump can run like it should.

Last, most sump pumps will last about 10 years, according the the U.S. Department of Housing and Development.  If your sump pump gets regularly maintained, you could increase its "shelf life" to 10-15, or even 20 years.

Our recommendation is to check your sump pump regularly and consider purchasing a generator, if you don’talready have one.

If you do ever become the unfortunate business or homeowner with a water damage and flooded basement, restoration companies work 24/7.  Well, at least Forrest and I have a real human picking up the phone every day of the year, for desperate water or fire damage clients.  

This includes all holidays for emergency fire and flood calls.  When there are inches or feet of water in your boiler or laundry room, you want to talk to a person and get immediate help!  It's a free call and complimentary estimate for us to visit your flooded home or business. 

We hope this sump pump blog helps you and yours, as our calls increased from falling trees this weekend. Welcome to Summer 2016, from all of us at SERVPRO of Scarsdale...! 

HURRICANE SEASON starts June 1, 2014 in Fleetwood NY 10552

4/28/2016 (Permalink)

Storm Damage HURRICANE SEASON starts June 1, 2014 in Fleetwood NY 10552 Superstorm Sandy was an historic 200 year storm, hitting the NYC area hard only 2 years after Hurricane Irene & Tropical Storm Lee flooded Westchester

Storms like Superstorm Sandy may be our new normal, with Climate Change in Fleetwood, NY 10552

Winters will be more severe and summers, hotter!, according to national weather experts with Ph.Ds after their names!

Hey all...sorry to be a weather geek, but our recent hurricane seasons just fascinate me.  It's either all or nothing, with Superstorm Sandy in 2012 and then, last year, we had "La Nada."  It's especially funny because forecasters warned of a bad La Nina storm season for summer 2013, especially in August and September.

Plus, in our business, we need to "saddle up" for storms that may flood home and business owners.

Lately, we need a weather vane for events like the microburst last June in Westchester County and our Polar Vortexes that caused frozen pipes this January.

We have all hands on deck in weather disasters, especially if Superstorm Sandy is our "new normal!"  BTW:  Very exciting to announce our new Small Woman Owned business, alongside our SERVPRO.  

My construction side is All Hands on Decks, Kitchens & Bathsa small woman owned business that is getting BIG. Forrest and I are the principals and we help disaster victims with their rebuilds, back to paint.  We'll try to throw an Open House for that one on or about our 5th anniversary for SERVPRO of Scarsdale / Mount Vernon -- June 2016!

So...with a supposedly slow hurricane season on tap this year, there are a few reasons why scholastic and other weather forecasters are calling for fewer storms in 2014.  Southern Westchester and the east coast of the U.S. will see a below average storm season, according to national weather services, the Feds and NOAA and even universities in Colorado and on national newscasts.

First, we look like we are developing an El Nino pattern in the Pacific this year -- or what I call "fewer storms, but more severe," if they make landfall in the U.S.

The science of it is that El Nino seasons mark a warming in the Pacific Ocean along the equator that suppresses tropical storm development around the planet.  

Also, after Superstorm Sandy, officials warm that storm surge can be the most deadly factor in hurricane conditions.

Basically, I'm a weather junky because I want to know what to wear...oh, and our family Sevpro of Scarsdale / Mount Vernon is often weather driven, I watch the action off of the coast of Africa, from the Sudan desert to the Caribbean Islands south of us in the U.S.

The six-month storm season begins June 1 & ends on Dec 1 each year.  We usually only reach the j's, for named hurricanes, but that may change with El Nino leaving us soon, forecasters say.

These are some of the names for the 2016 Atlantic season:

Ana

Bill

Claudette

Danny

Erika

Fred

Grace

Henri

Ida

Joaquin

Kate

Larry

Mindy

Nicholas

Odette

Peter

Rose

Sam

Teresa

Victor

Wanda

For a full list of upcoming hurricane names, go to: noaa.gov

Have a great (Spring &) Summer to be, everyone!

~ Hillary & all at SERVPRO of Scarsdale / Mount Vernon

Mount Vernon Chamber of Commerce Members