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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

Archived Water Damage Blog Posts

How to Identify Water Damage

8/5/2019 (Permalink)

Wallpaper with Water Damage

Mold can grow in as little as 24 to 48 hours. Stop mold growth, by identifying water damage fast. Here are some simple tips to help you identify water damage:

Identifying water in walls and ceilings may be obvious sometimes. However, it can be easy to overlook the most common signs. The early warning signs of water damage are peeling or bubbling paint or wallpaper. As more water comes into the property, walls and floors become bloated or swollen and may even warp. In severe cases, walls and ceilings may feel spongy to the touch.

You may be able to see water spots on walls and ceilings. Stains and possible mold are other ways to identify water damage.

Floors and carpets often hide water when the water is located in a corner. Many property owners often overlook the corner when looking for water damage. Floors can obviously be seen as wet, but carpet can hide water more easily. If the carpet feels spongy or soggy, you need to identify the source of that water.

Identifying water quickly is the best way to reduce damage. SERVPRO of Annapolis/Severna Park usually gets a call for mold damage after water was undetected by a slow leak. Protect your property. Identify Water Damage Fast!

Annapolis Water Damage

6/14/2019 (Permalink)

Water Damage

Recently, SERVPRO® of Annapolis/ Severna Park provided water damage restoration at a property in Annapolis. The cause of the water was a toilet leak and led to water damage on the top floor and the dining room ceiling. The leak on the ceiling then leaked to the first floor of the home. The carpet was affected tremendously and had to be removed from the first floor.

When your home is damaged by water, uniformed SERVPRO® of Annapolis/Severna Park professionals will arrive on-site usually within four hours of notification to begin providing a resolution to the water damage situation. Technicians will communicate with the homeowner in detail before beginning the cleanup and restoration process.

Our restoration services include moisture detection, water extraction, dehumidification and contents inventory. Franchise Professionals identify the source and type of water, which determines the proper course of action. Drying equipment controls temperature and humidity, minimizing secondary damage. SERVPRO® is available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

Tips for Client:

  • Do not use a regular vacuum to remove water.
  • Do not turn on ceiling fixtures if ceiling is wet, and keep out of areas where ceilings are sagging from retained water.
  • Do not leave books, magazines or other colored items on wet carpeting.

SERVPRO® of Annapolis/ Severna Park is here to help you during a crisis. You are our priority and we know that your emotions are everywhere when you have a water leak. Don’t stress, we will make your home look “Like it never even happened.”  

Annapolis Building Water Damage

6/12/2019 (Permalink)

Commercial Building Basement Water Damage

The basement is a known hot spot for water damage to occur. Basements can flood day or night, on weekends and even holidays, and that’s why SERVPRO® of Annapolis/ Severna Park offers 24 hour emergency service, 365 days a year. You can expect an immediate response time, day or night. Immediate action is crucial when dealing with flooded basements. As water damage specialists, we have the advanced training that enables them to get your basement dried properly and any affected belongings cleaned and dried. 

Recently, SERVPRO® of Annapolis/Severna Park was called to a commercial property in Annapolis with water in the basement. The first thing our team does is ask the property owner where they think the water came from. Then the team will identify the source to make sure it is stopped before any restoration or drying of the building. Next, we will continue with our inspection and use of equipment to make sure the area is completely dry. Specialized air movers/fans and dehumidifiers were used to draw the remaining moisture out of the basement. The faster the water is removed, the less chance of serious damage to your facility.

After any water damage situation, your primary focus should be safety first:

  • Is it safe to stay in the building?
  • Electrical and “slip and fall” hazards are some of the most prevalent concerns.
  • Wet materials can be very heavy. Be careful.

The sooner we arrive, the better the chance we can reduce damage and save money.

What Happens When Water Sits?

5/31/2019 (Permalink)

Water Damage

Water is so powerful that it can form mountains. But, when water is left sitting in your property it can become hazardous to your health. SERVPRO of Annapolis/Severna Park restored a property where a basement leak left standing water in a home for 2 weeks untreated. SERVPRO of Annapolis/Severna Park employees IICRC Water Mitigation Technicians that can properly treat a property with stagnant water.

Standing water is a breeding ground for bacteria, mold, and parasites that can be harmful to your health. While contaminated water poses a bigger health risk, bacteria will even grow in clean water. Mold can begin to grow and spread in as little as 48 hours.

In Arnold, Maryland, a home experienced a basement water intrusion that went undetected for 2 weeks while the homeowner was hospitalized. Based on the insurance adjuster’s suggestion, the homeowner contacted SERVPRO of Annapolis/Severna Park when he witnessed the amount of stagnant water as well as mold in the property. The complete basement and first level of the home, up to the ceiling, was covered in mold. This included couches, kitchen cabinets, flooring, and walls…everything you can think of. Our team provided water extraction, drying, dhimmification, as well as mold mitigation. They use a variety of cleaning techniques to clean and sanitize your belongings.

SERVPRO of Annapolis/Severna Park is highly qualified to handle stagnant water. Our team members are certified and well-trained in water damage and mold mitigation. When standing water is found in your property, remember the team that is faster to any sized disaster, SERVPRO of Annapolis/Severna Park.

When Winter Weather Strikes, We Strike Back

1/14/2019 (Permalink)

Ice Dam

SERVPRO of Annapolis/Severna Park wants your home or business to be prepared for winter weather.  Water damage can occur for different reasons during cold winter months.  Follow these winter weather tips to prevent water from damaging your property.

TIPS FOR PREPARING YOUR HOME FOR WINTER WEATHER

Keep cabinet doors open during cold spells. This allows warm air to circulate around pipes.

Keep a slow trickle of water flowing through faucets, especially if the pipes for faucets run through unheated or uninsulated areas of your home.

Consider shutting off outdoor faucets. Find the shut-off valve in the basement or crawl space and turn it to “off”.

Ensure gutters are clean and secure. Leaves and debris accumulate, causing a damming effect on gutters, which could lead to roof problems and water damage.

Proper maintenance of your furnace can help reduce the risk of puffbacks.

TIPS FOR PREPARING YOUR BUSINESS FOR WINTER WEATHER

Check your business property for downed tree limbs and branches.  Weather, such as wind, heavy rain, ice and snow, can cause branches to fall, which could cause damage to the property and potentially cause personal injuries.

Inspect property, especially walkways and parking lots, for proper drainage to alleviate flood hazard potential.

Inspect all handrails, stairwells and entryways to address and correct potential slippery or hazardous areas. Install mats or non-slip surfaces and post caution signs where water can be present.

Contact SERVPRO of Annapolis/Serverna Park for an Emergency Ready Profile for your business.

When water damage puts the things that matter most on the line, you need the very best help on the line as well. That’s why knowing the easiest ways to contact SERVPRO of Annapolis/Severna Park is so important. Just go to www.SERVPROannapolis.com on your mobile phone or call (410) 647-8181.

Sump Pump Failure Leads to a Flooded Basement

11/15/2018 (Permalink)

Sump Pump

During a recent rain event, SERVPRO of Annapolis/Severna Park went to a home in Anne Arundel County to handle a sump pump failure.  Sump pump failures happen for a variety of reasons including power failure, stuck switch, overwhelmed pump and more.  For this specific home owner, there was a problem with their battery backup.

When SERVPRO of Annapolis/Severna Park assessed the water damage, our water damage and restoration team determined that the effected areas included the storage/sump pump room, the recreational room and a basement bathroom. 

In the recreational room, the laminate floor was removed because there was bound water underneath. Air movers and de-humidifiers were set up to dry the concrete subfloor. The bathroom tile is adhered to concrete subfloor and won’t facilitate mold growth.  The SERVPRO of Annapolis/Severna Park crew treated any effected areas with an anti-microbial and set air movers for a three day dry out.  Lastly, the storage/sump pump room was also treated with an anti-microbial and air movers were set for drying. Our crew removed all furniture during the cleanup process.

After 3 days of drying, the team monitored the effected materials and determined everything was dry.  All equipment was removed and the homeowners are ready to start with their reconstruction.

Bad weather storms and power failures often coincide to make one deadly combination that often results in flooded basements across Anne Arundel County.  This is due to the fact that the heavy rain storms result in excess water and a power outage completely immobilizes your sump pumps ability to drain water.

This problem can be avoided by simply purchasing and installing a backup generator for your sump pump. If you ever lose power during a bad storm, you can manually turn this generator on to ensure your basement does not flood.

Record Rainfall for Anne Arundel County

11/9/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage

Did you know 2018 has been one of Anne Arundel County’s wettest years on record? So far in 2018, Annapolis, Severna Park, Edgewater, and other areas in the county have seen 60 inches of rain.  That means 2018 will go down in record books in the top 10 wettest years in history.  Anne Arundel County’s rainfall average is typically 42 inches.

So, what happens to your home or business when we get all this rain? You see water damage, flooded basements, sewer backups, flood damage and more.  SERVPRO of Annapolis/Severna Park has been working with Anne Arundel County business and residents to help cleanup water damage for over 42 years. Throughout the years we have seen lots of water damage.  Here are a few tips to help you keep water away from your structure:

Safety First.  Make sure it is safe for you to enter the wet area. Be sure to check for electrical hazards.  Only do activates that are safe to perform.

  • Remove excess water by mopping and blotting.
  • Wipe excess water from wood furniture after removal of lamps and tabletop items.
  • Remove and prop wet upholstery and cushions.
  • Place aluminum foil or wood blocks between furniture legs and wet carpeting.
  • Turn air conditioning on for maximum drying in summer.
  • Remove colored rugs from wet carpeting.
  • Remove art objects to a safe, dry place.
  • Gather loose items from floors.

SERVPRO of Annapolis/Severna Park is your emergency contact when you need water damage restoration. We answer the phone ready to help 24 hours a day/7 days a week.

Water and Sewage Damage

8/8/2018 (Permalink)

Basement water damage

SERVPRO of Annapolis/Severna Park is committed to educating our customers. As soon as you realize there is a water issue in your home or business, you need to call us for help and here’s why. There are different types of water and sewage damage and the sooner you fix the problem the better.

The three types of contaminated water:

Category 1: "Clean Water"

Category 1 water is from a clean source like a broken water supply line or leaking faucet. If not treated quickly, this water can turn into category 2 or 3, depending on length of time, temperature, and contact with surrounding contaminants.

  • Water from a clean source like a broken water line
  • If left untreated, can degrade into category 2 or 3

Category 2: "Gray Water"

Category 2 water is contaminated and could cause discomfort or illness. Examples include washing machine overflow; toilet overflow with some urine, but no feces; or dishwasher overflow.

  • May contain bacteria and viruses
  • Can quickly degrade into category 3 if left untreated

Category 3: "Black Water"

Category 3 water is grossly contaminated and could cause severe illness or death if ingested and any contact should be avoided. Examples include flooding from rivers or streams, water from beyond the toilet trap, water from the toilet bowl with feces, or standing water that has begun to support microbial growth.

  • May contain untreated sewage, harsh chemicals, and microbes
  • Water from flooding rivers or sewer backup

Sewage cleanup must not be taken lightly. Serious long term health issues to adults, children and even pets may occur due to bacteria, viruses and even parasites. Don't delay. Take immediate action. Call SERVPRO of Annapolis/Severna Park today at (410) 647-8181.

Toilet Tank Water Damage

6/11/2018 (Permalink)

Ceiling Damage

During the recent rain storms, SERVPRO of Annapolis/Severna Park was inundated with requests for help. However, even though most calls were about storm damage, some were routine water issues.  One such call came from Severna Park.

When this commercial building owner called us to attend to his three-story office building that was flooded, we discovered the loss occurred from a broken toilet tank on the third level.  The water ran all weekend long and the by the time Monday morning rolled around, all three levels were affected.  Most of the carpet was ruined, drywall was wet, and even the ceilings suffered from water damage. Nothing SERVPRO hasn’t seen before and within hours, 50 air movers and a 1200 CFM desiccant dehumidifier were installed, working off 55 KW generator to quickly dry the structure with as much minimum damage as possible.  Upon removing the carpet, we discovered asbestos tiles which no one wanted to disturb.  Being able to dry the structure so quickly and efficiently saved a lot of time and money for both the property owner AND the insurance company.  SERVPRO turned the building back over to the owner in under 96 hours!

May 2018 Record Breaking Rainfall in Anne Arundel County Maryland

6/1/2018 (Permalink)

Rainfall in Annapolis

Wow! Have we seen rain or what?! During the first 3 weeks of May, Anne Arundel County, Maryland has seen record-breaking rainfall.

SERVPRO of Annapolis/Severna Park and SERVPRO of Edgewater/Deale-Churchton and Lothian were inundated with requests to assist with flooded basements, leaks in roofs from fallen trees and more. Our crews worked around the clock and provided outstanding service to residents and business owners in Anne Arundel County.

When you suffer a water emergency, we will do our best to get to you as soon as possible. However, there are a few things you can do to make sure you are safe and to prevent additional damage. Here’s a list of questions you can ask:

  • Is it safe for you to stay in your house?
  • Are there any electrical risks? Is the water near an outlet?
  • Is it possible someone can fall in the water?
  • Can you move materials to dry areas?

Safety is our top priority. Always make sure you and your home are safe first. Wet items can be dried or replaced.

SERVPRO of Annapolis/Severna Park and SERVPRO of Edgewater/Deale-Churchton and Lothian is strategically located to provide rapid response to water emergencies. We are water removal and cleanup specialists and are ready to service your home when flooding or water leaks cause water damage. We quickly dry your property using state-of-the-art water removal equipment and advanced drying techniques, documenting the drying process to make sure your property is dry and the job is done right.

If you have concerns with water damage, call us (410) 647-8181

Bottles Bottles all around Arnold

12/22/2017 (Permalink)

Plastic Bottles around Severna Park will take over 400 years to naturally decompose.

The ball fields, the lunch rooms, the playgrounds and even the side of the roads.  There are water bottles everywhere we turn.  Statistics show globally we buy a million plastic bottle per minute. Now that we know we are the cause of all these bottles, what can we do to help eliminate them?

Our family recently purchased a bottle less water cooler similar to those at bottleless.com.  We had been using the 5 gallon jugs but felt bad even about that.  So now we are bottle less and we use refillable water bottles or glasses, which makes us feel like we are doing our part.  This did come with the concern of having a water line installed and running.  Which could leak and cause water damage to the kitchen or the basement below. 

Using a professional plumber to help us install the water line and verify all the connections were sealed, we felt very comfortable that we are doing the best thing for the environment.  We do check our lines once a month when we change our filter to make sure we spot any small leaks ahead of time.  So far so good! 

If you find yourself with any type of water damage or in need of water restoration services, call SERVPRO of Annapolis/Severna Park 410.647.8181 anytime.

Freezing Temperatures Getting Ready to hit Anne Arundel County

11/9/2017 (Permalink)

Frozen pipes can cause major water damage to local homes. We are here to help 24/7/364.

The weatherman is telling us that freeze warnings are going into effect as of tomorrow.  The next week or so is going to be colder than average for November in Maryland. Are you and your home ready? 

If you have not checked your heating units, gotten out your gloves and scarves now is a good time to do that.  One thing many people do not think of when doing winter preparations is freezing pipes. Pipes that are exposed to the cold on the exterior of your home, near your pool or garage and interior pipes with little insulation are all at risk.

Draining outdoor water lines, insulating attic and crawl space pipes and keeping indoor temperatures to above 55 degrees, even if no one is home, are simple steps to help prevent frozen pipes.  The American Red Cross has a full guide to winter preparations for your pipes.

Should you get caught with a burst pipe and have water running everywhere, you need to call SERVPRO of Annapolis/Severna Park to mitigate the water quickly. Our professionals are available 24/7/365 even holidays.

Just woke up and there is water everywhere, Now What?

11/9/2017 (Permalink)

Find the water shut off then call SERVPRO!

First thing is to find the source of the water and stop the flow if possible.  If you need to, turn off the water shut off for the whole house. Usually located in the basement. 

Now take a deep breath and make sure any electrical or trip hazards are addressed.  You can now call SERVPRO of Annapolis/Severna Park who will arrive and use advanced equipment and techniques to remove the water quickly. They closely monitor and document the drying process to verify your property is dried properly and thoroughly.

Our content cleaning division is capable of sanitizing items, drying documents and photos, and electronic cleanup.  We understand that your personal belongings are an important part of any restoration job. The entire team will be with you from beginning to end when you suffer an unexpted water loss.

Have A Water Damage Emergency? 
Call 
410-647-8181

Get our READY PLAN app today!

6/20/2017 (Permalink)

Be READY should a water damage happen with our SERVPRO READY APP.

Annapolis/ Severna Park residents can get help faster and easier by downloading the SERVPRO® Ready Plan app, for FREE.  This easy to use application allows you to create a SERVPRO® Emergency Ready Profile for your home or business.  You will take a few minutes to enter critical property details that you might need following a loss.  Easy to follow prompts will guide you through the short process.  These important details will be at your fingertips should you suffer a water damage or fire loss in the future. 
The App contains weather updates as well as steps to take during a water, fire, mold or vandalism damage while you wait for the SERVPRO team to arrive. 

SERVPRO® of Annapolis/Severna Park is happy to assist commercial property owners/managers through the Emergency Ready Profile creation.  Call us today at 410.647.8181 and ask to speak with a sales and marketing representative.

You can download the app from iTunes HERE  

or for android phones HERE

Faster to your Annapolis Water Damage Event

6/2/2016 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Annapolis/Severna Park provides 24 hour fire and water damage restoration service in Annapolis, Severna Park, and Arnold.

Flooding and water emergencies don’t wait for regular business hours and neither do we. SERVPRO of Annapolis/Severna Park provides emergency cleaning and restoration services 24 hours a day, 7 days a week—including all holidays.

Faster To Any Size Disaster

Flooding and water damage is very invasive. Water quickly spreads throughout your home and gets absorbed into floors, walls, furniture, and more.  SERVPRO of Annapolis/Severna Park arrives quickly and starts the water extraction process almost immediately. This immediate response helps to minimize the damage and the cleaning and restoration costs.

Need Emergency Service? Call Us 24/7 – 410-647-8181

Water Damage Timeline

Within Minutes

·         Water quickly spreads throughout your property, saturating everything in its path.

·         Water is absorbed into walls, floors, upholstery, and belongings.

·         Furniture finishes may bleed, causing permanent staining on carpets.

·         Photographs, books, and other paper goods start to swell and warp.

Hours 1 - 24:

·         Drywall begins to swell and break down.

·         Metal surfaces begin to tarnish.

·         Furniture begins to swell and crack.

·         Dyes and inks from cloth and paper goods spread and stain.

·         A musty odor appears.

48 Hours to 1 Week:

·         Mold and mildew may grow and spread.

·         Doors, windows, and studs swell and warp.

·         Metal begins to rust and corrode.

·         Furniture warps and shows signs of mold.

·         Paint begins to blister.

·         Wood flooring swells and warps.

·         Serious biohazard contamination is possible.

More Than 1 Week:

·         Restoration time and cost increase dramatically; replacing contaminated materials and structural rebuilding may be extensive.

·         Structural safety, mold growth, and biohazard contaminants pose serious risks to occupants.


About SERVPRO of Annapolis/Severna Park

SERVPRO of Annapolis/Severna Park specializes in the cleanup and restoration of residential and commercial property after a fire, smoke or water damage event. Our staff is highly trained in property damage restoration. From initial and ongoing training at SERVPRO’s corporate training facility to regular IICRC-industry certification, rest assured our staff is equipped with the knowledge to restore your property.

The 3 Categories of Water Damage

5/3/2016 (Permalink)

In the event of a water damage, We will identify the category and classification of water damage to ensure our professionals restore your property based on industry guidelines. The level of contamination of the water will affect the specific restoration processes we use.

Category 1 Water Damage

That which is clean at the releasing source and does not pose a hazard if consumed by humans. Category 1 water may become progressively contaminated as it mixes with soils on or within floor coverings or building assemblies (walls, decking, subflooring). Time and temperature, which promote the growth and amplification of microorganisms in water can cause Category 1 water to degrade. Examples: burst water pipes, failed supply lines on appliances, vertically falling rainwater.


Category 2 Water Damage

That which begins with some degree of contamination and could cause sickness or discomfort if consumed by humans. As with Category 1 water, time and temperature can cause Category 2 water to become progressively more contaminated.


Category 3 Water Damage

That which is highly contaminated and could cause death or serious illness if consumed by humans. Examples: sewage, rising flood water from rivers and streams, ground surface water flowing horizontally into homes. There are two ways in which water enters a building as a result of wind storm damage:

The first involves falling or windblown rainwater that enters as a result of damage to roof components or wall assemblies. The second involves horizontally traveling ground surface water (Category 3) containing silt and soil contaminants that infiltrate into structures, generally through doors or around foundation walls. This ground surface water (storm surge) may accumulate to a depth of several inches or several feet. When structures are partially submerged or remain substantially flooded for weeks, far more elaborate procedures usually are required.

Have a water damage emergency? Call us today, 410-647-8181

Annapolis Residents: We Specialize in Flooded Basement Cleanup and Restoration!

4/25/2016 (Permalink)

Basement Flooding

A basement can flood at any time, although flooding most often occurs during heavy rainfall. Basements are inherently prone to flooding because they are the lowest level of a building and are normally built partly or entirely below ground level. There are a number of reasons why your Annapolis basement could flood, including: 

·   A blocked or failed sewer lateral pipe

·   Heavy rain causes surface water to pool around your home

·   Storm sewer backup

·   Sanitary sewer backup

·   Foundation drainage failure

·   Water supply-line break or hot-water tank failure

·   And many more

Have Questions about Basement Flooding?


Call Today – SERVPRO of Annapolis/Severna Park

If flood water is not handled quickly and properly, it can jeopardize your health and safety, and cause severe damage to your home’s structure. Remember, the longer you wait, the worse the problem will get.

The bottom line: a flooded basement can jeopardize your health, safety, and your home’s integrity. It’s worth making a call to SERVPRO of Annapolis/Severna Park and let our trained, professional crews handle the situation safely and correctly. We have earned the trust of hundreds of homeowners, business owners, and property professionals.

We are Flooded Basement Specialists:

·  We are Available 24 hours/7 days per week

·  We’re a Preferred Vendor to many National Insurance Companies

·  We Bill The Insurance Directly – One Less Thing For You To Worry About

·  Our Technicians are Highly-Trained  in Water Restoration Techniques

·  We use s500 IICRC Restoration Standards

·  Advanced Inspection and Extraction Equipment

Basement Flooded? Call Us Today – We’re Ready To Help 410-647-8181

Sewage Cleanup

2/17/2016 (Permalink)

Water from sewer system backups should be considered very dangerous. The water is grossly unsanitary and may contain bacteria and viruses that could cause serious illness. Special training and equipment is necessary to safely clean this type of contamination.

Sewage Backup or Toilet Overflow? Call Us Today – (410) 647-8181

There are three major types of contaminated water. SERVPRO of Annapolis / Severna Park will inspect that contaminated water to determine the type of water and then plan the appropriate response to safely restore your home or business.

The three types of contaminated water:

Category 1: "Clean Water"

This is water from a clean source, such as a broken clean water supply line or faucet. If left untreated, category 1 water can quickly degrade into category 2 or 3 water depending upon such factors as time, temperature, and contact with contaminants.

  • Water from a clean source like a broken water line
  • If left untreated, can degrade into category 2 or 3

Category 2: "Gray Water"

This water has a significant level of contamination that could cause discomfort or illness if ingested. Sources for category 2 water may include washing machine overflow; toilet overflow with some urine, but no feces; or dishwasher overflow.

  • May contain bacteria and viruses
  • Can quickly degrade into category 3 if left untreated

Category 3: "Black Water"

This water is grossly unsanitary and could cause severe illness or death if ingested, and any contact should be avoided. Sources for category 3 water could include flooding from rivers or streams, water from beyond the toilet trap, water from the toilet bowl with feces, or standing water that has begun to support microbial growth.

  • May contain untreated sewage, harsh chemicals, and microbes
  • Water from flooding rivers or sewer backup

24 Emergency Service

Sewage backup should be considered an emergency and dealt with as quickly as possible. We are the water damage restoration specialists with specific training and expertise to safely restore your home or business.

Freezing Pipes

2/11/2016 (Permalink)

One of the most common things to happen to a home during a cold snap is water damage caused by frozen pipes, especially if your pipes aren't insulated. Even where extremely cold weather is normal in winter, pipes freeze and cause all kinds of problems. Pipes freeze when they're exposed to freezing weather for a few days. Problems come up when frozen pipes thaw; cold weather makes pipes brittle and frozen water has less volume than running water. The pipe breaks due to the cold, water starts running and then you've got a mess on your hands.

Pipes can freeze in 2 main areas – water coming in and water going out. You know water coming in is frozen because nothing comes out the tap. Frozen outgoing pipes from showers, toilets and sinks are a bigger problem because these will back up into the house; that's the reason it's always recommended to keep a little water dripping into the sinks and opening the cabinet doors under the sink ... running water doesn't freeze as easily as standing water.

     Every winter season, the pipes in your home are at risk of damage from freezing conditions. Low temperatures can cause your water pipes to freeze, and in some cases burst. Here in Maryland, we can go days with temperatures in the teens. The following tips can help you safeguard your home before, during and after a pipe freezes.

Prevent Your Pipe From Freezing

  • Disconnect all gardening hoses and install covers on all outside faucets.
  • Keep your house temperature at 68 degrees or higher, even if you're leaving the house for an extended period of time.
  • Open cabinet doors below sinks to allow heat from the home to circulate.
  • Identify the location of the main water valve and the valve on your water heater. (Learning the location of these valves may come in handy during an emergency.)
  • Wrap pipes nearest exterior walls and in crawl spaces with pipe insulation or with heating tape. This can prevent freezing, especially for interior pipes that run along outside walls.
  • Close all windows near water pipes; cover or close open-air vents. Freezing temperatures combined with wind drafts can cause pipes to freeze more frequently.
  • Heat your basement and consider weather sealing your windows.
  • Insulate outside walls and unheated areas of your home.
  • If you plan to be away from home for an extended period of time, shut off water supply valves to your washing machine.
  • Monitor Freezing Pipe Conditions

  • Allow a faucet to drip slightly (lukewarm water) in order to minimize freezing.
  • The first sign of freezing is reduced water flow from a faucet.
  • Check your faucets for water flow and pressure before you go to sleep and again when you wake up.
  • Check pipes around your water meter, in unheated areas, near exterior walls and in crawl spaces.
  • These tend to be vulnerable to freezing conditions.
  • Identify cold air drafts coming in from a flute or chimney chase and caulk gaps that are near pipes.
  • If a Pipe Bursts 

  • Shut off water at the main valve.
  • If the break is in a hot water pipe, the valve on top of the water heater should be closed.
  • Call a professional restoration expert such as SERVPRO of Annapolis/Severna Park at 410-647-8181. Keep our number nearby for quick access.
  • Protect your Home this Winter

    1/4/2016 (Permalink)

    Cold weather can cause broken pipes in Severna Park.

    Being prepared and informed may help you to avoid the messy and often expensive issue of frozen pipes.  

    Protect water pipes from freezing by simply allowing water to drip when temperatures dip below freezing. If pipes are under a cabinet, leave the cabinet doors open allowing warm inside air to circulate around the pipes. If the building has outdoor faucets, consider shutting off at the main valve in the basement or crawl space. Once the valve is off, open the outdoor faucet to ensure it drains, preventing any remaining water from freezing in the pipe. 

    Insulating pipes that are close to the exterior of the home is a preventive measure as well.

    Helpful Tips to Avoid Freezing Pipes

    2/13/2015 (Permalink)

    Burr its cold!!! Keep your home safe from freezing pipes with these helpful tips!

     1. Wrap outside faucets

    2. Caulk around pipes where they enter the house.

    3. Disconnect garden hoses.

    4. Drain in ground sprinkler systems

    5. Let a stream of water run, if the temperature dips below freezing.

    6. Open cupboard doors in the kitchen and bathrooms.

    7. Shut off and drain your water systems if you are leaving home for several days.

    Water Damage can present a serious hazard.

    1/30/2015 (Permalink)

    Water damage can present a serious hazard. Do not attempt to turn on or operate any electrical device that you suspect has been damaged by water.

    A few tips for preparing your home for winter weather from your local SERVPRO

    12/30/2014 (Permalink)

    Example of water marks on a drop ceiling. "It's the water you don't see!"

    - Keep cabinet doors open during cold spells. This allows warm air to circulate around pipes.
    - Keep a slow trickle of water flowing through faucets, especially if the pipes for faucets run through unheated or uninsulated areas of your home.
    - Consider shutting off outdoor faucets. find the shut-off valve in the basement or crawl space and turn it to "off"...
    - If you follow the previous steps, then open the outdoor faucet to help ensure it drains completely and the inner valve is shut off.
    - Ensure gutters are clean and secure. Leaves and debris accumulate, causing a damming effect on gutters, which could lead to roof problems and water damage.
    - Proper maintenance of your furnace can help reduce the risk of puffbacks.