Will the insurance cover my broken pipe?
Filing a claim after you have a broken pipe.
Water damage is one of the most common and devastating types of property damage. Whether it’s the result of a broken pipe, a burst water heater or something else entirely, getting your insurance company involved can help you cover the cost of repairs and prevent any further damage to your home. Here are some answers to common questions about filing an insurance claim after water damage.
If you have a broken pipe and the water is leaking into your home, your insurance company will cover the cost of repairs. However, if your roof has a leaky spot or if there's another plumbing fixture that has sprung a leak (such as a toilet), those damages are separate claims and may not be covered by your policy. It a safe practice to know what your insurance policy covers.
In most cases where pipes break inside the walls of an older home, insurers won't deny claims because of an outdated structure, they'll just pay for the repairs needed to fix them.
Filing a claim.
After filing a claim, the insurance company will send an adjuster out to assess the damage and make a settlement offer. The adjuster is trained in assessing damage and making fair settlements for repairs. If you accept their offer, they'll pay for all necessary repairs and deduct it from your deductible (the amount of money you're responsible for). You can always decide not to accept their settlement offer and continue making repairs yourself.
Making repairs yourself.
If you have an insurance company that is offering to cover the cost of repairs, but not all of them, there are a few things to consider. First and foremost, it's important to know whether or not your policy covers broken pipes. If it does not, then there's no point in filing another claim with your insurance company because they'll just deny it again.
Secondly, if you choose not accept their offer and decide instead repair everything yourself without help from anyone else, then this means paying out-of-pocket for all those expenses as well as taking time away from work or school in order complete them and possibly losing income during those hours when most people would be working.
If these are both options seem like too much work for one person alone then maybe consider hiring someone who has experience repairing burst water lines?
You should file a claim with your insurance company whenever you have water damage. You can always decide not to accept the settlement offer and continue making repairs yourself, but this will take time and money that could be better spent on other things. If you have insurance, filing a claim is your best option
Insurance is there to protect you, so filing a claim is always a good idea. If you don't have insurance or aren't sure if your current policy covers water damage, we can help you find the right coverage for your home. Call SERVPRO today for your water restoration emergency.
5 Steps to Take After A Frozen Pipe Burst
Here are five steps you can take to mitigate the damage and get things back in order.
A frozen pipe burst can be a nightmare, but it's not the end of the world. Here are five steps you can take to mitigate the damage and get things back in order.
Turn Off the Main Water Valve
To prevent more water from spilling out into your home, it is important to turn off the main water valve. If you don't know where your home's main water valve is, call a professional for help as quickly as possible.
Turn off each individual faucet and drain in your house, as well as any appliances that rely on water—like dishwashers and washing machines. You may also want to consider turning off or unplugging anything that relies on electricity, like televisions and lamps.
Remove the Water
If the leak isn't too severe, try to remove the water from your home. Removing any moisture can prevent secondary damage from occurring on your property. However, in many cases with frozen pipe bursts, the amount of water present is too much for the average person to remove without the proper equipment. In these cases, it is best to call a professional water mitigation expert as quickly as possible.
Waiting to call a professional can result in further damage to your property, so make sure you call someone as soon as you notice the pipe burst has occurred.
Document the Damage
The next thing you should do is get your camera out and take as many photos of the damage as possible. This will be helpful when it comes time to file a claim with your insurance company because it'll give them an idea of how much money they'll have to pay out on your behalf.
You'll want to take pictures of anything that was damaged by the burst pipe—including walls, furniture, personal items like clothing and electronics, and even small things like photographs or decorations on shelves that may have gotten wet.
It is also important to take photos of the cleanup process. These pictures will serve as evidence if there are any disputes.
When working with a mitigation and restoration company such as SERVPRO of Northwest San Antonio, they will take care of all of this for you and will extensively document everything from start to finish.
Call Your Insurance Company
As soon as possible after a pipe burst, contact your insurance agent to file a claim and start the claims process. The insurance company will want to know the extent of the damage and any other information that may be helpful in processing your claim.
Call a Disaster Cleaning and Restoration Company
The most important thing you should do after a frozen pipe burst is to call our SERVPRO of Northwest San Antonio team for help. Our team is the leading provider of restoration services in the San Antonio area, so you can be sure that we will take care of your property and get it back to normal as quickly as possible. Our team will come in and assess the damage, determine what needs to be cleaned up, and take care of all mitigation and restoration-related tasks for you.
We hope this blog post has given you the information that you need to deal with a frozen pipe burst. If you have any questions, don't hesitate to contact our team of experts today!
Do’s and Don’ts of a Grease Fire
If you have a grease fire in your San Antonio home, it is important to know what to do and not do.
Grease fires can be extremely devastating and can cause serious damage to your home and personal belongings. A grease fire occurs when cooking oil or fat overheats and ignites. These fires can spread quickly and are difficult to extinguish, making them particularly dangerous.
When faced with a fire, call 911 immediately. Do not delay in seeking help. If you are able to do so safely, get everyone out of the house and wait for the fire department to arrive. If not, make sure that you get out yourself and then call 911 as soon as possible.
If you have time, try to move away from potential hazards such as walls or other flammable materials before attempting to put out the flames.
If there is a grease fire in your kitchen or another area where it would be difficult to evacuate everyone safely, keep an extinguisher nearby at all times just in case an emergency arises where one would be needed. When using a fire extinguisher, remember to aim at the base of the flames. You will need to spray the fire until it is completely out.
If you are unfamiliar with how to use a fire extinguisher, make sure that you get training before attempting an emergency response. If you do not know what kind of fire extinguisher to use or how to actually operate it, leave the area and call 911 instead.
Do not use water to put out a grease fire—this will only spread the flames! Instead, grab a lid or baking pan and slide it over a small grease fire in your pan or pot. Put on oven mitts and remove any other nearby items that could catch fire (such as paper towels) before sliding the lid over the top of the pan/pot with confidence; be sure not to drop it into your burning oil!
If you find yourself in a situation where there is a grease fire, do not panic. Try to remain calm and assess the situation. If you can do this without panicking, then your chances of successfully extinguishing the fire will be much higher.
If you have a grease fire in your San Antonio home, it is important to know what to do and not do. You should never try to put out a fire with water or any other liquid. The best response is to stay calm and call 911 as soon as possible. When it comes to cleaning up your home and contents after a fire, give SERVPRO of Northwest San Antonio a call and we’ll be out to help clean up and restore your home in no time.
Dealing with Water Damage in Your Attic
Water damage in your attic is a serious problem that can cause mold and rot, which will lead to structural problems down the road.
Dealing with Water Damage in Your Attic
Water damage in your attic is a serious problem that can cause mold and rot, which will lead to structural problems down the road. If you're worried about water damage in your attic, here's what you need to know about how to prevent it from happening.
Finding the Leak and Damage
If you have a leak in your San Antonio, TX home, it's important to find the source of the water damage and take steps to correct it. If you are unable to identify where the water is coming from, or if you don't know how to fix it, reach out for help.
If there is mold growth around the problem area, clean up any visible mold with an all-purpose cleaner. Use a stiff brush and scrubbing pad (not just disposable wipes) so that you can get into corners and along edges thoroughly; this will ensure that all surfaces are treated equally and no hidden spots remain untreated.
Common Causes of Attic Water Damage
Water damage in your attic can be caused by a variety of sources. These include:
- A leaking roof
- A leaking plumbing system
- A leaking air conditioning system
- Leaking appliances (including dishwashers, washing machines, and hot water heaters)
- Water seeping into your home through windows or skylights
Signs of Water Damage in the Attic
There are some signs that could indicate issues in your attic:
- If you see any water stains on your ceilings or walls, this could be an indication that there is some kind of moisture problem in your attic.
- Another sign that you have a water damage issue is if there are obvious signs of mold growth, such as black spots or patches. Mold spores can easily get into your home through an opening in the roof and stay there until they grow into something bigger and more problematic—and even then, they might still be hiding out in other areas of your house! This means that you should take action immediately when you notice any signs of mold growth because it's best to remove these spores before they spread throughout your home and cause more damage than necessary!
- A musty smell in a room or on your clothes can indicate mold growth. This indicates that bacteria has slowly grown over time due to high humidity levels allowed by leaky pipes under sink cabinets,
How to Prevent Water Damage in Your Attic
Prevent damage to your roof, foundation, and walls. As you've read above, water that leaks into your attic can cause damage to the insulation and to items stored up there. To prevent this from happening, it is important that you repair any roof leaks as soon as possible. If you are not sure what type of repairs should be made, contact a professional like SERVPRO of Northwest San Antonio.
Keep gutters clean and free of debris. If your gutters are clogged with leaves or other debris, then rainwater will have trouble flowing down them toward the ground where it belongs; instead, it flows onto the surface of your home's exterior wall or worse yet gets trapped in your attic.
Make sure you clean out your rain gutters regularly. If left unattended over time this will lead to water pooling around chimneys which could cause costly damage when frozen during winter months causing cracked mortar joints between bricks which could result in expensive repairs later on down the road so better safe than sorry!! We suggest checking them every month during springtime just before warmer weather arrives so no surprises happen later on down south.
How to Fix Water Damage in Your Attic
Once you've determined that your attic has suffered water damage, it's time to get started cleaning up. The first step is to remove any wet insulation and drywall from your attic floor. This will allow the space to dry out completely, which should not be done without taking these precautions. Next, remove wet insulation from joists or rafters in the ceiling. If you have a leaky roof, take care of that as soon as possible by repairing or replacing damaged shingles and decking materials.
If you have a leak in your roof or attic, it needs to be found and fixed as soon as possible. Water damage can lead to mold growth, structural damage, electrical problems, and property damage. It’s important to get help from professionals if you are not sure how to fix the issue.
It’s important to remember that water damage in your San Antonio attic can lead to serious problems for you, your family and pets. The longer it goes unrepaired, the more damage will occur and the more expensive it will be to fix. If you have any concerns about the condition of your home’s roof or attic, contact us today for mold remediation and water damage restoration in your home.
Saving a Flooded Basement
Using a sump pump can help prevent water damage in your facility.
Saving a Flooded Basement
If your basement has been flooded, you need to act quickly. Water can cause mold and mildew to grow, which will make your San Antonio, TX home uninhabitable. If your basement has flooded, the first step is to stop the water from entering. If you haven't already done so, shut off your main water valve and turn off any individual faucets that may be letting in water.
Next comes removing as much of the water from your basement as possible. There are two ways to do this: you can use a sump pump or hire professionals who specialize in draining flooded basements.
Sump pumps are usually installed after a basement waterproofing job or new construction so that they can help remove any excess moisture from beneath floors and walls before it causes serious damage to these structures (and potentially damage to other parts of your home). They're also used when flooding occurs outside an already-installed drainage system—for example, when heavy rains come through during springtime thaw periods—or if there's been some sort of accident involving broken pipes inside homes without proper drainage systems installed beforehand.
If you choose this method for removing excess water from below ground level then make sure all drains are clear before starting up again!
What kind of pump is best to remove water from the basement?
When evaluating the type of pump you need to remove water from your basement, it's important to know a few key performance characteristics.
First, there's the size of the pump; different models come in different sizes and can move more or less water. Next, there's how much power it takes to operate the pump—a bigger motor means more power, which translates into faster evacuation times. Finally, there are some pumps that are specifically designed for use with sump pits and other low-lying areas where an ordinary submersible model may not be effective at extracting water from underneath the surface of your home's foundation.
To make sure you get exactly what you need from our selection of pumps, here are some specs that may help guide your decision:
- Gallons per minute (gpm) refers to how much liquid a particular model can pump per minute through its rotating impeller blades at maximum capacity (or "flow rating").
- Horsepower (hp) refers to how much energy is required by each unit over time while operating under optimal conditions (i.e., fresh batteries).
Drying Out the Basement
To dry out a flooded basement, you will need to use fans, dehumidifiers, and wet/dry vacuums.
Fans help in drying up water in basements by circulating air around it. The best way to use fans for this purpose is by installing them in one corner of your basement, so they can suck up all the dampness from other corners as well.
Use a dehumidifier to remove excess moisture. Not only do they help remove excess moisture but also help reduce mold growth. Mold growth is common after a water damage event, so try to prevent it as much as possible.
You should always purchase high-quality equipment though because some cheaper ones tend to break down very quickly when used continuously over a long period of time.
How Long Does It Take to Dry Out a Basement?
The amount of time it takes for a flooded basement to dry out depends on several factors. First, the size of the basement will affect how quickly water evaporates. If there's a lot of space in your basement but not much water, it will take less time than if your basement is small and filled with standing water.
Second, how well you can ventilate your flooded basement and how well you're able to dry it out will also affect drying times.
Third, if your floors are wood or concrete and don't absorb moisture easily then this will play into how long it takes for them to dry out after being exposed for several days or weeks (if ever).
Pumping water out of the basement is one way to mitigate flood damage.
Drainage pumps are another popular option for removing water from your flooded basement. These devices come in a variety of sizes, ranging from small-scale pumps that can be operated by one person to large-scale systems that require two people and higher amounts of electricity. They're incredibly easy to install and operate—just plug the pump into an outlet, connect it to your sump pump (or other drainage sources), then turn on the device and wait for the water to be removed from your home.
A similar product is called an electric submersible pump, which is specifically designed for use in flood-prone areas or homes with high groundwater levels. These are also fairly simple to operate: just place them inside your sump hole and turn on the power switch!
If you have a flooded basement and you need to pump water out, there are several options. The best solution is to call SERVPRO of Northwest San Antonio to take care of it for you. Give us a call!
Keeping Your Building Secure After a Fire
Board up windows and openings with plywood as soon as possible after the fire has been extinguished.
Keeping Your Building Secure After a Fire
A fire can be devastating for a business in San Antonio, TX. Not only does the building need to be repaired, but you also need to worry about looters who will try to steal anything of value in your building after an emergency response has passed. If you don't take action quickly, you could lose even more than just the contents of your store: lost revenue from looters can add up to billions of dollars each year. The good news is that there are simple things you can do during and after an emergency that will help prevent looting and protect your business.
Board Up Your Windows and Doors
How do you keep looters at bay? Board up windows and openings with plywood (or whatever suitable material is available) as soon as possible after the fire has been extinguished. The best way to prevent looting from happening on your property will be to keep your doors locked. Another thing that might help is making sure your home looks unoccupied; this means removing any valuables from view so that potential thieves will not target your place for the valuables they see.
Looting is a Common Issue
Looting is a common issue after fires in commercial buildings, especially if there are no security guards present. Looting is opportunistic and criminals look for easy targets to steal from. A fire can cause looting because the building will be full of merchandise and items that can be sold. There is also often very little security on-site during the cleanup process after a fire so it's prime for criminals looking for easy targets.
Looting Makes Getting Back On Your Feet More Expensive
Looting is not just an issue in the aftermath of a natural disaster but also after fires. Looting occurs when people take advantage of an emergency situation to steal property or money. It's a crime that can carry serious penalties if you're caught and convicted. For victims of looting, it’s more than just an inconvenience; lost revenue from looting adds to the costs of recovering from a fire.
To prevent looting, make sure your building has adequate security measures in place throughout its lifespan—not just after it's been damaged by fire.
Call the Fire Damage Experts in San Antonio
Fire damage cleanup is a specialized service, and it's important to find the right company to help you. Fire damage restoration companies have the tools, training, and experience needed to board up buildings after a fire. These experts can get your business back on its feet much faster than you could do it yourself.
It's also important to note that many post-fire cleaning companies will not take down building coverings or boards because of liability issues. They mostly just clean up after fires, so this may be something you should consider when deciding which company you want on the job.
The obvious answer is that you want to board up your building as soon as possible after a fire.
Fire damage is not the only thing that can happen after a fire. Looters can cause damage, steal your property and even harm your employees if they discover them before the police get there.
If you don't take action immediately, you could be liable for any injuries sustained by looters who break in through windows or doors on the front of your property. If they're caught inside doing so, they could also sue for damages caused by their own actions in stealing from or vandalizing a business location.
The best way to protect your building after a fire is to board it up quickly and securely. A fire cleanup company, like SERVPRO, can help you do this.
3 Ways To Prevent Cigarette Fires
As long as you take preventative measures to avoid a cigarette fire, you won't have to worry about contacting fire restoration professionals.
Prevent Cigarette Fires
Would it surprise you to learn that in 2014 alone, upward of $400 million in residential property damage was caused by cigarette-related sources? From how smokers dispose of cigarettes to where in the house they choose to light up, each use indoors comes with a certain degree of risk. Here are three tips to protect your house from a potential cigarette fire.
1. Don't Smoke in the House
The average American has dozens of combustible chemicals in their home, including air fresheners, cleaning solutions, cosmetics, and cooking sprays. These materials can act as prime fuel sources when exposed to the heat given off by cigarettes. These agents often build up on the carpet and furniture. Outdoor smoking is one of the easiest ways to alleviate the danger of a cigarette fire.
2. Dispose of Cigarettes Safely
You may also have to worry about an ashtray fire if you smoke. To prevent an ashtray from tipping over and becoming a fire hazard, you should purchase a deep, wide-brimmed one, which will be inherently more stable. Even when putting a cigarette into an ashtray, it's critical to make certain that the butt is completely out. Submerging spent cigarettes in water can guarantee that they pose no danger. Keeping ashtrays away from your house is also an option.
3. Educate Your Family To Avoid a Fire Cleanup
Having a serious conversation with any children in the household can make all the difference. They need to understand that cigarettes, lighters, and matches are not toys to be played with. Whether your family lives in San Antonio, TX, or any other part of America, the training will be equally beneficial.
As long as you take preventative measures to avoid a cigarette fire, you won't have to worry about contacting fire restoration professionals. These tips can help keep you and your family safe for years to come.
3 Ways To Maintain Your Rental Home's Pipes
Take care of tree roots.
3 Ways to Keep Your Rental Home's Pipes in Good Condition
If you have an older rental home in San Antonio, TX, remember that regular pipe maintenance prevents plumbing issues and potential damage. Follow the tips below to keep your rental home in peak condition and save yourself the headache of cleaning up from leaking or busted pipes.
Why Maintenance Is Important For Your Rental
Problems with pipes often come from clogs or faulty piping. Over time, sludge, hair and whatever gets flushed down a toilet or drain can build up in your pipes, clogging the system. While you can quickly clear sink clogs with a treatment, mainline clogs can lead to leaking and damage.In older homes, polybutylene pipes can become brittle and, without proper maintenance, can break. These pipes made from a plastic resin can sometimes react with oxidants found in public water, resulting in micro-fractures and an overall weakening of your system.
How To Maintain Your Pipes
Use an enzyme treatment: Pour an enzyme mixture down your drains and into your toilet regularly, starting once a week and gradually moving to once a month. Let the mix sit in your pipes overnight, flushing it out with hot water in the morning. You can also find a mainline enzyme mix to clean out your entire piping system four times a year.
Be aware of what you put down your drain: Ask your tenants to be wary of what they put down the sinks. Do not put hair down a bathroom sink or certain food scraps down a kitchen sink, even if it has a garbage disposal.
Take care of tree roots: Tree roots can grow into your home’s pipes, so ensure that you’re plumbing system is not affected by a wandering limb. You can flush a root-killing treatment down your toilet twice a year to kill off any stray roots without harming the tree.
Regular pipe maintenance is essential for keeping older homes free from damage. Use treatments and caution to prevent your home from needing professional services for water damage or plumbing issues. Have peace of mind knowing your rental home is safe.
How To Restore Water-Damaged Documents in 3 Steps
Protect your information in these documents from future damage by either digitization or storing physical copies in a secure location.
Restoring Water Damaged Documents
If water damage occurs at your San Antonio, TX, business, you are likely wondering whether or not you can restore wet documents. Fortunately, the answer is often yes. The following outlines the three-step recovery and protection process.
1. Document Drying
When it comes to drying documents, you have a few options. If the documents are only slightly damp, you may be able to let them air dry. Avoid laying them flat to prevent smudging. For more severely damaged documents, a certified restoration service can use more sophisticated techniques. Freeze drying involves freezing the document and then using a high-pressure vacuum to turn the liquid into a vapor. This removes the moisture from the papers without exposing them to liquid again.
2. Document Sanitizing
Wet documents have often been exposed to bacteria and other contaminants through the water they came in contact with. They can be sanitized through a process known as gamma irradiation. This technique exposes the material to Cobalt-60 radiation, which kills the offending microbes without further damaging the documents.
3. Document Digitizing
Unfortunately, not all flooding can be prevented in the future. Despite today’s sophisticated restoration techniques, not all documents are salvageable. This means that your important documents should be protected from future water damage. You could make copies and store the originals off-site in a secure location. However, it is often simpler to digitize the documents. There are scanners and software available that make this process easier, or you can hire professionals to do it for you.
When a business incurs water damage, many owners worry about wet documents. In many instances, these can be restored and cleaned so they are safe to use. It is also important to protect the information in these documents from future damage by either digitization or storing physical copies in a secure location.
Commercial Irrigation System Troubleshooting Tips
It is best practice to examine your sprinkler system periodically to avoid future irrigation problems.
Troubleshooting Commercial Irrigation Systems
A working sprinkler system can produce a lush, green landscape for a San Antonio, TX, business. However, if it malfunctions, it could cause flooding. If the ground is too saturated, especially near any buildings, you could wind up with water soaking through cracks in the foundation and entering your basement or concrete slab. If this scenario occurs, you should call in a water damage cleanup team. Before that situation happens, try locating and repairing the leak yourself. Here are some simple ways you can troubleshoot.
Examine Irrigation System
The first thing you will want to do is walk around the area where you have sprinklers.
- Stop at each sprinkler head. Inspect to make sure none are broken or missing.
- Look for water that is not where it should be or is pooled up. Pay particular attention to any water that is near a building.
- Listen for the sound of running water. If you have a leak or a broken pipe, you should be able to hear it.
- As you are inspecting your irrigation system, place markers at each location where you have found a problem so you can return to it quickly when you go back to fix it.
Repair and Replace
Once you have finished your walkthrough, return to the flagged areas and start your repairs. Clean out dirt and debris from clogged sprinkler heads. Replace any rubber seals or gaskets that were leaking during your inspection. Repair or replace any broken or missing sprinklers.
Perform Maintenance Checks
It is best practice to examine your sprinkler system periodically to avoid future irrigation problems. Doing a thorough check of your irrigation system when you start using it each year will help identify any repairs needed before bigger problems occur.
Investing time to troubleshoot and repair any problems at your business yourself will save time and money and provide a beautiful landscape for your customers and San Antonio, TX, residents for years to come.