Archived Water Damage Blog Posts
Navigating Water Damage Safely: Understanding Electrical Hazards
Contact a qualified electrician to assess and repair any electrical damage caused by water damage.
Water damage is a common concern in our coastal community, and it often brings along unseen dangers—especially electrical hazards. When water and electricity mix, it can lead to serious risks for homeowners and businesses alike. In this blog, we'll delve into the critical importance of understanding electrical hazards during water damage incidents and how to stay safe in Portland's picturesque surroundings.
1. Risk of Electric Shock
Water is an excellent conductor of electricity, and when it comes into contact with electrical systems or appliances, it increases the risk of electric shock. Even a small amount of water can pose a significant danger if it reaches outlets, switches, or electrical equipment.
2. Potential for Fire
Water damage can compromise the insulation of electrical wiring, leading to short circuits or exposed wires. This can generate sparks, heat, and potentially start a fire. Electrical fires are a severe risk during and after water damage incidents.
3. Hidden Hazards
Some electrical hazards may not be immediately visible. Water can seep into walls, ceilings, and floors, making it challenging to identify potential dangers. Hidden electrical hazards can persist even after visible water has been removed.
4. Impact on Appliances
Water damage can affect electrical appliances and equipment. Moisture can damage sensitive components, rendering appliances unsafe to use. Attempting to operate water-damaged appliances can lead to electrical accidents.
5. Damaged Electrical Panels
Electrical panels or circuit breaker boxes can be vulnerable to water damage. If these essential components are compromised, it can result in power surges, outages, or other electrical issues.
Safety Measures During Water Damage
The safety of you and your family or employees should be the top priority. If it's safe to do so, turn off the electrical supply to the affected area or the entire property. Never enter areas with standing water until you're certain it's safe to do so. Standing water can conceal electrical hazards, and contact with it can be life-threatening. Avoid using any electrical appliances or equipment that have been exposed to water until they have been inspected and declared safe by a professional.
Contact a qualified electrician to assess and repair any electrical damage caused by water damage. DIY electrical work is highly dangerous and should be avoided. After water damage, have your electrical systems thoroughly inspected to ensure they are safe for use. This step is essential to prevent future hazards.
Understanding the dangers of electrical hazards during water damage is crucial for the safety of your home or business in Portland, ME. By being aware of these risks and taking appropriate safety measures, you can minimize the dangers associated with water damage incidents. If you ever find yourself dealing with water damage and electrical hazards, remember that SERVPRO® of Portland is here to assist Portland residents with professional cleanup and restoration services. We prioritize safety and are dedicated to helping you navigate the challenges of water damage while ensuring a safe and secure environment.
Upgrade Your Plumbing: Reasons to Replace Your Supply Lines
Replacing supply lines in your home can help prevent your kitchen faucet from leaking
Supply lines play a critical role in your plumbing system, delivering water to fixtures such as sinks, toilets, and appliances. Over time, these supply lines can deteriorate, corrode, or become worn out, potentially leading to leaks, water damage, and even plumbing emergencies. In this blog post, we'll explore some compelling reasons to consider replacing your supply lines, ensuring a reliable and efficient plumbing system in your home.
Prevent Leaks and Water Damage
Supply line failures are a common cause of water leaks and subsequent water damage in homes. As supply lines age, they may develop cracks, fractures, or weakened connections, leading to leaks. Replacing old and worn supply lines with new ones reduces the risk of leaks, minimizing the potential for costly water damage and associated repairs.
If your current supply lines are made of outdated or inferior materials, it's advisable to upgrade to high-quality options. Modern supply lines are often constructed using materials such as braided stainless steel or reinforced PVC, which offer improved durability, flexibility, and resistance to corrosion. Upgrading to these superior materials ensures a longer lifespan for your supply lines.
Enhance Water Efficiency
Older supply lines may have restricted flow or inadequate water pressure, resulting in inefficient water usage. By replacing your supply lines, you can improve water flow and pressure, optimizing the performance of your fixtures. Upgrading to more efficient supply lines can also contribute to water conservation, reducing your environmental impact and potentially lowering water bills.
In some cases, outdated or non-compliant supply lines may not meet current building codes or insurance requirements. When renovating your home or making plumbing upgrades, it's crucial to ensure that your supply lines meet the necessary standards. By replacing outdated lines, you can ensure compliance, safeguard your insurance coverage, and meet the safety regulations in your area.
Minimize the Risk of Contamination
Older supply lines made from materials such as galvanized steel or lead can pose health risks. Galvanized steel supply lines can corrode over time, potentially introducing rust and contaminants into your water supply. Similarly, lead pipes, commonly found in older homes, can leach lead into the water, posing serious health hazards. Replacing these outdated supply lines with safer, modern alternatives is essential for maintaining a healthy water supply.
If you're planning a remodeling or renovation project that involves plumbing work, it's an ideal time to replace your supply lines. Upgrading the supply lines before the project ensures that you have a reliable and efficient plumbing system in place, reducing the likelihood of disruptions or issues during the renovation process.
Investing in new supply lines provides peace of mind, knowing that your plumbing system is equipped with reliable and high-quality components. By proactively replacing supply lines, you can prevent unexpected plumbing emergencies, reduce maintenance needs, and enjoy the reassurance of a well-functioning plumbing system.
Replacing your supply lines is a proactive step toward maintaining a reliable and efficient plumbing system in your home. From preventing leaks and water damage to upgrading to high-quality materials and improving water efficiency, there are compelling reasons to consider replacing old and worn supply lines. Prioritize the safety, performance, and longevity of your plumbing system by consulting a professional plumber and investing in new supply lines. By doing so, you can enjoy a worry-free plumbing experience while protecting your home from potential water-related issues.
What I need to know about drying important documents
Drying documents can be hard, give SERVPRO a call for professional assistance.
Water damage is one of the most common causes of lost or damaged documents, and it can cause serious problems if not handled properly. The best way to protect your valuable documents from water damage is to take proactive measures to prevent them from getting wet in the first place. If you're lucky enough that your valuable documents have already been exposed to water without causing any harm, then this article will help guide you through the steps necessary for drying them out safely at home or sending them off for professional treatment.
How do I know if my document is water damaged?
Check for physical damage. The most obvious sign of water damage is if your document has been torn or ripped in places, especially along the edges. This can happen when pieces of paper stick together when wet and then separate when they dry out.
Look for discoloration and mold. If there are stains on the surface of your important papers, it may be caused by moisture seeping into them from the outside (i.e., rain) or within (i.e., humidity). Also check for discoloration along with any other signs of mold growth.
Check for odor. If your documents smell musty or damp after being stored away from direct sunlight/heat sources such as windowsills or radiators
What happens if I don't dry my documents?
If you're not careful, water damage can cause a number of problems with your documents. These include:
- Mold and mold spores--Mold can grow on wet paper.
- Ink running--When ink runs, the words become illegible and may be impossible to read later on. This is especially problematic for handwritten documents where the ink will run into other parts of the page as well as overtop any other writing that might be present there already.
- Paper swelling--Swelling occurs when moisture gets trapped between layers within your document or book as well as between pages themselves (especially when there's no protective cover). The swelling will result in warping or curling which makes reading difficult if not impossible altogether.
How can I tell if my documents are in danger of being damaged by water?
Before you can decide what to do with your wet documents, you need to know the cause of the damage. Water damage can be caused by a number of things, A flood or leak in your home or office building (including fire sprinklers). A burst pipe or broken water main in your home or office building. Flooding due to heavy rain or snow melt.
If this is not clear from looking at your documents, contact a professional who can help identify whether they have been damaged by water and what steps should be taken next.
My document is water damaged, what should I do next?
You should first try to dry the document by laying it flat and in a cool, dry place. Letting the document sit in direct sunlight can also help to speed up the process. If this doesn't work and your important documents are still too wet to be handled safely, try using a dehumidifier or vacuum cleaner. A fan can also be used to speed up drying time, but make sure that it isn't blowing directly on your documents! Once your papers have been dried out properly, store them in an airtight container until they're ready for normal use again (or until you need them).
When will my document be completely dry?
The drying time will depend on the type of paper and your drying method. Paper towels are generally much faster than blotting with a cloth or tissue, but they also tend to leave behind more lint.
If you're in a hurry and don't want to wait for your document to dry naturally, consider using a hair dryer or fan instead of air conditioning--both methods work equally well for most documents (and both use less energy). If possible, though, try not to expose important documents directly into any direct sunlight because UV light can cause fading over time.
You may also want to consider using an electric dehumidifier if possible, these machines remove moisture from the air around them so that it doesn't reach dangerous levels within enclosed spaces like closets or drawers where sensitive materials are stored away from direct contact with human hands.
Drying your documents can be a daunting task. However, it is important to remember that if you act quickly and properly, the damage may not be as bad as you think it will be. Give SERVPRO a Portland a call to assist in your document drying process after a water loss.
What to do if Ceiling has Wet Stains?
If you've got a wet spot on your ceiling that's not mold, you'll want to do everything in your power to get rid of it as fast as possible.
What to do if Ceiling has Wet Stains?
There are a variety of reasons your Portland, ME home has wet ceilings. Sometimes there might be water damage from a leaky roof, other times it could be condensation buildup caused by poor insulation or air circulation. It may look like nothing at first glance, but if left unchecked it can lead to serious problems over time. We want to help you better understand how to identify wet stains on ceilings and what action is appropriate depending on their cause.
Determine the source of the leak.
Water stains on your ceiling could indicate that there's a leak somewhere in your home. Leaks can be caused by a variety of things, including plumbing issues, roof problems, and leaks in the walls.
When faced with this situation, first determine the source of the leak. If there is water dripping from above, check for cracks or holes in your roof where rain could be entering; if there are no holes in your roof but water is still leaking through onto your ceiling, look for leaks in plumbing pipes that run through your attic and into your house below. After determining whether or not there are any obvious sources of water coming from above, clean up what has already spilled and make sure to dry out as much moisture as possible before moving on to step two: stopping further leaks and preventing future ones from happening again!
Fix the leak.
If you have a leak in your ceiling, this is the next step to take. If you don't fix the leak, more water will get into your home and damage your ceiling. You may need to call in a professional if you aren't sure how to fix it or if it requires expensive materials.
Dry out water from the ceiling.
If you've got a wet spot on your ceiling that's not mold, you'll want to do everything in your power to get rid of it as fast as possible. First, use fans and other ventilation methods to dry out the ceiling. If the stain is large and there's plenty of water damage, hire a professional restoration company like SERVPRO of Portland.
Water stains on ceiling can be caused by a variety of things.
The best thing you can do if you discover water stains on your ceiling is to locate the source of the leak as soon as possible, and then stop it. The source of the leak may be a fairly straightforward issue to fix, or it may be more complicated, such as replacing an old roof or repairing a broken pipe.
Whatever you decide to do about your water stains on the ceiling in order to prevent further damage, it’s important that you act quickly before too much damage has been done and before any mold starts growing in your home.
Hopefully, this article has helped you understand the problem of wet stains on the ceiling and what to do about it. If you have any additional questions or concerns please feel free to contact SERVPRO of Portland and we will be happy to assist you with whatever questions you may have.
How To Stop a Continuously Flushing Toilet
Flushometer gaskets can become clogged with sediment as a result of constant exposure to water. you must wash the gaskets to remove the sediment.
How To Stop A Toilet From Flushing Constantly
If your toilets are continuously flushing, there may be a problem with the flushometer. The flushometer is the mechanism that flushes the toilet. If the flushing is not stopped, there may be toilet overflow that could result in damages. Here's how to stop a toilet from flushing continuously.
Take the First Steps
If your toilets won't stop flushing, there are a series of steps you can try:
- Turn off the water
- Remove the cover
- Clean the gasket
- Reinstall the gasket
- Replace the gasket if flushing continues
Once the problem is fixed, you should call a water damage restoration service in Falmouth, ME, to clean up any toilet overflow and prevent mold growth.
Access the Gasket
To access the gasket, you should first turn off the water so that you do not have a toilet flood. You will then need to remove the cover on the flushometer. You will first need to unscrew the cover on the side of the flushometer and then use a wrench to remove the lid on top. This will expose the gasket, allowing you to remove and clean it.
Clean the Gasket
The gaskets in flushometers can become covered with sediment due to their constant exposure to water. You should wash the gasket, carefully removing as much sediment as possible. This includes using a small instrument, such as a needle, to clean out the weep hole. Doing this will improve the vacuum created by the gasket and hopefully stop the continuous flushing.
Reinstall and Test
After cleaning the gasket, you should put it back in its place and reattach the cover. You will then need to turn the water back on and flush the toilet. If the flushing still will not stop, you may have to replace the gasket or call a plumber.
You can stop a toilet that is continuously flushing by accessing the gasket, cleaning the gasket and then reinstalling and testing the gasket.
If cleaning or replacing the gasket does not work, you may need professional assistance to prevent toilet overflow.
3 Essential Steps After a Basement Flood
Once any floodwater around your house has receded, getting the water out of your home as soon as possible is imperative.
Three Important Steps To Take After A Basement Flood
Watching your lower level in Windham, ME, fill with water is scary and can feel impossible to fix. Regardless if it is from a torrential downpour, a sewer backup or some other emergency issue, a basement flood can be very damaging to your home without proper aftercare. Once you have checked your insurance coverage, here are three more things you must do afterward.
1. Drain the Water
Once any floodwater around your house has receded, getting the water out of your home as soon as possible is imperative. You will need a few items to accomplish this:
- Submersible pump
- Long hose
- Extension Cord
Pump as much water out as you can. Once you are down to smaller puddles you can work with a wet/dry vac as well to finish the job.
2. Dry and Clean Up
After the water has been removed, take out any damaged belongings. Use towels or blankets to soak up any further puddles and wipe everything down as much as you can. Set up some large fans to begin drying out the area. Depending on how long you were flooded and how deep the water was, you may need to replace any carpeting and drywall in the affected area. In order to prevent further damage from your basement flood, it is best to contact trained water restoration specialists to help complete the job thoroughly.
3. Prevent Future Floods
Determining the cause of the flood will help you to prevent future occurrences. Check your sump pump to ensure it is working properly and is appropriate for the amount of groundwater in your area. You should also check the drainage around your home and your gutter system to ensure each one is properly designed to funnel water away from your house.
It is important to remain calm and think ahead when you experience a home disaster. Although it can seem like an overwhelming experience, damage from a basement flood can be minimized if you take these steps.
3 Strategies for Preventing Water Damage in Your Home
Our team quickly responded to this water loss to cleanup and get the drying process in place quickly. Call SERVPRO when you need it!
Three Ways to Prevent Water Damage in Your House
Your Portland, ME, home is probably one of your greatest investments. Beautifying, decorating and improving your property takes hard work, so guarding it against damage can be as important as repairing existing issues. Preventing water in your home can help you avoid a variety of troubling issues, from structural problems to mold growth and more.
1. Insulate Your Water Pipes
Wrapping your home’s water pipes can protect your property from water damage in a few ways. First, it keeps the pipes warm when the temperature drops below freezing and prevents water from freezing inside them. Frozen water tends to expand and may cause the pipe to burst, resulting in a messy pipe cleanup job. Insulating your pipes can also keep your home’s water supply flowing normally, even during a cold snap when the risk of a broken pipe is higher than usual.
2. Upgrade Your Drainage System
When it comes to finding unexpected water in the home, one of the most common trouble spots is likely to be the basement. Basement floods can be common in early spring when runoff and heavy rains cause your yard to overflow. You can prevent this issue by upgrading your drainage system. Replace old gutters and downspouts and have your roof checked to ensure it is draining properly.
3. Have Your Home Inspected by a Water Remediation Company
Contacting a flood cleanup and water remediation company to inspect your home for possible flooding risks can help keep it safe. Knowledgeable flood technicians can identify and resolve issues that may increase the risks, whether you live in an area that floods often or your home’s basement is prone to taking on water. Working with a company like this can help you defend your home against water damage all year round.
Preventing water in the home probably a high priority for you as a Portland, ME, homeowner. Taking the proper steps to reduce this risk can give you peace of mind and allow you to enjoy your happy home.
Water in the Basement
Be aware that any drywall or flooring components that have absorbed too much water may need to be replaced as they can harbor bacteria and mold.
The Basement Is Wet.
A residential basement flood situation in Portland, ME, can cause serious problems for those involved if not addressed in a timely manner. Check out the following resources to better understand what to do if standing water occupies your lower floors.
The most important consideration for any prudent homeowner is the safety of the occupants. Never enter a completely flooded basement area until you have disconnected the home from the power grid, especially if the electrical outlets or other appliances are still in standing water. You might also consider some form of contact protection, such as a pair of boots or waders, to prevent unnecessary exposure to contaminants from gray water.
Trudging through the water will do you little good without a solid plan. Depending on the form your insurance coverage takes, you may need to make an inventory of the items affected by your basement flood. Your insurer may also require that you take active steps to prevent any ongoing damage, such as routing new sources of rainwater away from the home. The drying process for affected items should begin at this point. Your insurer may insist that certain sensitive items and procedures are handled by a qualified flood damage restoration service.
3. Prevention and Maintenance
Once you have cleared all standing water from the property and moved any water-susceptible belongings, inspect the basement area to determine why water accumulated. Is the sump pump in working order? Are there any clogged or broken pipes or drains between your basement and the sewer? Take steps to inspect and repair these items. Also, note that any drywall or flooring components that have absorbed too much water may need replacement, as these can harbor bacteria and mold.
Though a wide range of natural disasters or plumbing problems can affect any homeowner, a few preventative steps can reduce the risk of a basement flood and help to mitigate the amount of property damage you incur.