Recent Water Damage Posts

How To Choose a Commercial Drying Specialist

9/7/2021 (Permalink)

Water shooting out of pipe and causing flooding in stairwell. A broken pipe at your business in Wichita, KS, is a stressful experience.

Unexpectedly, you discover a broken pipe at your commercial property in Wichita, KS. You immediately shut off the water main to the site, call your insurance agent and go online to find a commercial drying specialist. However, there are many to choose from. How can you ascertain which company will quickly and properly complete the water clean up and restoration for your business structure and contents?

Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC)

The IICRC provides certification based on industry standards for restoration companies. Look for the IICRC logo on company websites or professional vehicles. When you hire a certified restoration company, you can feel confident that the technicians will have the following skillsets:

• Possess current knowledge of the field through experience, training, and examination.
• Uphold the IICRC high code of business ethics.
• Maintain current licenses and insurance.

Commercial Drying Specialist Certification

When a broken pipe occurs, you need a specialist trained specifically in water clean up, commercial drying, and restoration procedures. During the accreditation process, the IICRC ensures that technicians acquire and display the following knowledge and skills:

• Demonstrate proper techniques in inspection and evaluation of commercial water damage.
• Understand project management and coordination of commercial structures.
• Recognize commercial hazards and safety considerations related to water damage.
• Establish expertise in current methods of drying structures and materials.
• Comprehend moisture mechanics, air management, and the microbiology of flooding.

A broken pipe at your business in Wichita, KS, is a stressful experience. Not only do you worry about damage to the building structure and contents, but you also become apprehensive about the interruption to your company. Finding a reputable commercial drying specialist for the water clean-up and restoration process is critical to getting up and running again in an efficient manner. When the specialist is IICRC certified, you can trust that the technician possesses the skillset to get the job done right.

Cleaning Items Damaged by Water

7/13/2021 (Permalink)

wet floor of a family room Water damage in a Topeka, KS home.

Taking Care Of Items Damaged By Water

If there’s water in your home, your personal belongings will more than likely be affected. Whether it comes from a broken pipe, storm, or flood damage, water tends to go wherever it wants. Knowing how to clean, preserve and protect your property can help make an overwhelming task much more manageable. 

1. Put Safety First

Before handling anything that’s been water-damaged, make sure you wear appropriate gloves and masks. You might even consider waterproof clothing. This kind of water can be contaminated by a host of chemicals, bacteria, and foreign substances, and no matter how valuable they might be, no personal possession is worth the potential cost to your health.


2. Clean Off the Mud

Once the water in your home is gone, clean any mud or silt off your items. You can rinse them with cool, clean water. Only use clean water in order to prevent additional contamination. If your items have already begun to dry, or if you have soiled clothes that require dry cleaning, don’t scrub them. Use a brush or cloth to wipe away as much debris as you can.

3. Get Them Dry

Remove wet items to a dry part of the house and allow them to air-dry. Use fans and open windows to increase air circulation, which can aid the drying process. Some items, like area rugs and wool blankets, can safely dry in direct sunlight, while others need to be indoors. Place waterlogged books, papers and photographs in the freezer to dry them out slowly. A restoration specialist can advise you if you have valuable or collectible papers, books, or photographs.

While water in your home in Topeka, KS, can cause serious damage, many of your personal possessions can be saved and their functionality restored. If you have any questions about the best methods for preserving and restoring a particular item, contact a professional in your area.

How To Make a Successful Water Damage Insurance Claim

4/7/2021 (Permalink)

empty bedroom the floor is wet, wooden planks are on the floor. Concept of water damage in a bedroom Water damage in a bedroom.

Water Losses Can Cause Major Damage To Your Home

Approximately one out of every 50 homeowners make a water damage insurance claim each year. This makes water losses the second most common cause of insurance claims, behind only hail and wind disasters. There are several different types of water losses, including:

  • Bursting pipes
  • Overflows
  • Floods
  • Sewer backup
  • Storm damage

Making a Claim
After a water loss, you should hire emergency restoration professionals who can fix broken pipes or appliances. This type of cleanup is often covered by insurance. However, insurance providers may deny your claim.
There are several things you can do to ensure your claim is accepted. First, you should read your policy carefully and make sure you understand what is and is not included. If certain losses are not covered under your policy, you may want to purchase excess insurance. For instance, those who live in areas with heavy rain should buy separate flood coverage.
You should also regularly check your appliances and plumbing systems for potential problems. While insurers usually cover sudden emergencies such as bursting pipes, they do not cover losses that result from longstanding leaks or corrosion.

Challenging a Denial
If your insurance claim is denied, you do not have to just accept the insurer's ruling. Find out exactly why your loss was exempted from coverage. You should also ask whether it was the insurance adjuster or the agent who made the final call on the matter. You can even ask your representative for a second opinion.
If you believe coverage was wrongly denied, contact a consumer advocacy group in your area. You can also file a complaint through your state's insurance commissioner.
Bursting pipes and other water losses can cause incredible damage to your Topeka, KS, home. While insurance can help you pay for the repairs, insurers are not afraid to deny homeowners' claims. To stop this from happening, you should buy the correct insurance for your needs and perform as much preventative maintenance as you can.

Tips on Flood Readiness for Your Business

2/23/2021 (Permalink)

Flashlight, portable radio, batteries, water bottles and a first aid kit Emergency resource box with water, flashlights, batteries and a first aid kit.

Unpredictable weather conditions can cause rising floodwaters and threaten your business with physical damage and loss of revenue. With preparation, your risk of significant damage lessens. Taking a few precautionary measures can save you from having to clean up major water damage and lose valuable time. Consider implementing the following:

Emergency Preparedness Plan

Whatever your existing risk level, you may experience less damage to your business if you prepare by:

  • Compiling an emergency resource box or closet that includes water, flashlights, batteries and a first aid kit
  • Signing up for emergency notification services in your area
  • Finding phone numbers for a local water restoration company
  • Keeping up with preventive maintenance practices, such as cleaning gutters and storm drains
  • Posting building evacuation routes in a central location

The type of plan you require depends on your level of risk for severe weather and water damage.

Risk Assessment
Consult with your city planning department, local weather agencies and nearby property owners to determine the history of flooding in your area. Knowing your risk level helps you plan for any vulnerable elements related to your structure or location. Your business insurance agent may also be able to help you determine your risk, and the Federal Emergency Management Agency provides risk maps and other resources.

Staff Training
If you discover that you bear a flood risk, it is important to involve your workforce in emergency preparedness. From broken pipes to threatening floodwaters, your staff can be helpful in helping prevent serious water damage. A little preparation can teach them what to do and how to work together effectively in an emergency. Your local emergency response personnel or water remediation specialist may generally be willing to help you design a plan for your unique situation.
If your Winfield, KS, business endures a flood event, you will likely be glad you spent time preparing. Water cleanup and restoration can be disruptive, but adequate preparation can reduce the impact of severe weather on your property and your bottom line.

3 Steps for Basement Flood Repair

1/3/2021 (Permalink)

Flooded basement Flooded basement damage

3 Steps for Basement Flood Repair

Is your home in Emporia, KS, prone to flooding? A basement flood is one of a homeowner's worst nightmares; it can seem like an impossible task to clean up, and many worry about saving as many belongings as possible. However, it is a doable task if you are informed about the right steps.


1. Shut Off the Power
Entering flooded areas is dangerous, especially with the power still flowing. If your circuit breaker isn't located in your basement or any flooded area, go ahead and shut off the power. This way, it will be a little safer to wade into the water and retrieve what you can. Still exercise caution as waterlogged walls and ceilings are usually prone to collapse, and there are still many other dangers of a flooded area.


2. Drain the Water
If you own a shop vac or similar vacuum that is capable of sucking water, consider vacuuming the majority of the water out of the basement. If you still have an active source of flooding, this is a great time to deal with it. Issues like pipe repair are still best left to a professional since it can be dangerous to wade into flooded water.


3. Call a Professional
Once you've done what you can by making the area safer, removing water, and stopping the source of the leak, it's time to call a professional water damage cleanup service. Here's where the magic happens. The experts employ several tools to make your basement look new again. They use specially designed machines to dry furniture, walls, and ceilings. While some parts of your home or some items may not be salvageable, most are saved with this advanced equipment. Most pros also have tools to detect hidden moisture pockets, thus, your home can avoid needing mold tests or cleanup performed in the future.
With the right steps and a well-equipped professional, the flooding is "Like it never even happened."

Should Noisy Pipes Be Cause for Concern?

11/23/2020 (Permalink)

Man covering ears Should noisy pipes be cause for concern?

Find Out More About The Noises The Water Pipes Make

Water pipes make noises for many reasons. Some present no cause for concern, but others indicate a serious problem. It's important to understand the cause of the noises so that you avoid costly repairs due to a pipe break or other catastrophe. Find out more about the noises that water pipes make.

1. Banging Sounds
If you hear a banging noise when you turn on a faucet in your home in Wichita, KS, you may have water line issues. When air gets trapped in the pipes, it can cause serious issues. It's important to call a plumber to inspect your water line before a problem occurs.

2. Humming Noises
When you have high water pressure, it makes the pipes vibrate and hum. If the water pressure gets too high, the vibrations can cause a pipe break. Contact a professional to test your water pressure. If a water leak occurs, call a water damage repair service as soon as possible.

3. Rattling Sounds
Pipes that are suspended sometimes move around a bit as water moves through them. As they move, they bang on walls and ceilings. To reduce the risk of a pipe burst, securely fasten any hanging pipes to eliminate the rattle.

4. Whistling Noises
Washers and other small plumbing parts wear out over time. Broken or worn washers will cause a squeaking or whistling noise. If you don't have the technical knowledge, call a plumber to tighten the valves or fix broken pipe washers before a leak occurs.

5. Gurgling Sounds
Pipes that don't drain fully make gurgling sounds. This is typically caused by a blockage in the pipes. An expert who is trained in cleaning drains should inspect the pipes and clear the obstruction.
If you understand the noises your water pipes make, it prepares you for potential problems. It also reduces the risk of a pipe break or other water catastrophe.

Should I Clean Up Contaminated Water?

10/14/2020 (Permalink)

Blue background of water with the words WATER CATEGORIES in the middle Types of water categories

Types of Contaminated Water

No one in Colwich, KS, ever wants to face a home water emergency. Occasionally, though, a sudden flooded toilet or sewer backup can leave you wondering, "Should I try to clean it up myself?" or "Should I call in water damage experts for sewer cleanup and restoration services?" The fact is, water emergencies involving sewage are especially problematic for homeowners because of the significant health risks they pose.
Contaminated water—say from a sewer backup—harbors bacteria, viruses and other potentially harmful, even lethal, microorganisms that require professional-grade, sewer cleanup solutions. Here's an overview of the types of contaminated water to help you gauge the best answer to your cleanup question.

Clean Water
This type of floodwater comes from a "clean" source.

Flows from a leaking faucet or ruptured water supply line.
Doesn't contain contaminants from sewage.
If left standing, water quality can deteriorate depending on length of time, temperature, and exposure to other contaminants.

Gray Water
This category of water is contaminated and can cause illness.

Pours out of a washing machine, dishwasher or toilet (and contains urine, but no feces).
May hold harmful bacteria or other dangerous microbes.
Water quality can rapidly degrade if not treated quickly.

Black Water
Water of this type is severely contaminated and can bring on serious health issues or cause death if ingested.

Includes floodwaters from rivers or streams; water from outside toilet traps; feces-filled water from toilet bowls; stagnant water with microbial growth.
May carry untreated sewage, hazardous chemicals or toxic microbes.
Avoid contact with this type of noxious water, including attempts at self cleanup.

Household water emergencies are distressing. If your home is threatened by sewage-contaminated water, it's in your best interest to rely on professional skill and expertise. Trained technicians have the experience and equipment to deliver highly specialized sewer cleanup services that ensure both your safety and your home's.

3 Common Water Damage Problems at Your Commercial Business

9/1/2020 (Permalink)

Water pipe break Water line breaks in your building may cause flooding

Causes of Flooding In A Commercial Business

Your Haysville, KS, business might be vulnerable to a variety of flood causes, from a broken pipe in the bathroom to a sprinkler malfunction that damages your carpets and other building materials. Water can also impact your property’s electrical systems and cause shorts that might ruin computers and your security system. Understanding the many causes of flooding may help you safeguard your property against water damage and react quickly if it should happen.

1. Water Line Breaks
When you think of floods, you might imagine outdoor torrents of water causing canals and ditches to overflow. However, indoor floods due to water line breaks can be just as damaging. Your breakroom’s refrigerator may be one culprit, and if the line malfunctions over a holiday or weekend, you might return to find a considerable flood. Maintaining and replacing this line when necessary could prevent this.

2. Pipe Breaks
A broken pipe in the basement or in a bathroom could cause a major flood, especially if it occurs on a second or third floor. Pipe breaks are often common in the winter when cold temperatures cause water to freeze inside pipes until they expand and burst. Wrapping your pipes with cloth or using foam insulation can reduce the risk of damage, and have your plumbing inspected annually to ensure worn or old pipes are replaced.

3. Sewer Issues
When flooding causes a sewer backup, this could cause your building’s toilets to overflow. This problem can be hard to prevent and may result in a Category 3 water issue, which means the floodwaters contain toxins, feces and sewer chemicals. You may want to call in a water repair and restoration service for assistance and to ensure a safe and professional cleanup.
Safeguarding your Haysville, KS, business against water damage from a broken pipe, water line break other water issues can prevent costly repairs and downtime. While you cannot avoid every circumstance, remaining aware of some common problems may be helpful.

Should You Repair or Replace a Leaky Toilet?

5/27/2020 (Permalink)

Leakage of water from a toilet due to blockage of the pipe Fix that leaking toilet right away

Should You Repair or Replace a Leaky Toilet?

If you have a leaking toilet in your home in Salina, KS, pinpointing the source of the leak will determine if you can repair the toilet. Most common leaks will show up around the base of the toilet, but they could be caused by a variety of issues. Start with the easiest toilet repair first, and move on to the next fix, if necessary.

Tighten the Closet Bolts
With a putty knife, pry off the bolt caps. Carefully tighten each bolt a small amount at a time with a wrench, alternating between the bolts. Wipe up any water on the floor and wait to see if the leak has stopped. If water starts pooling again, you should replace the wax gasket.

Replace The Gasket
Shut off the water by locating the shutoff valve located behind the toilet.

Take the lid off the tank and flush the toilet, holding the handle down to remove most of the water. Soak up the remaining water with an absorbent towel.
Loosen the nut on the shutoff valve to disconnect the tube for the water supply. Then remove the nuts from the closet bolts.
With your arms around the bowl, gently rock it until the wax seal breaks. Then lift the bowl and place on a towel.
Carefully scrape the old wax gasket off. Replace it with a new gasket, making sure it’s centered.
Set the toilet back down on the gasket, pushing firmly to secure. Make sure the tank is parallel to the wall. Replace the nuts and tighten carefully.
Reconnect the water-supply tube and open the valve. Flush the toilet a few times to make sure you no longer have a leaking toilet.

Replace the Toilet
If you have an old toilet, it’s probably time to replace it. Follow the steps above for removing and replacing the toilet.
You can save yourself a lot of money on potential water damage repairs by fixing that leaking toilet right away.

Can Water-Damaged Documents Be Saved?

5/12/2020 (Permalink)

Wet documents Call a professional right away to help you recover all of your wet documents and other important papers

Water damage from flooding at your commercial property in Wichita, KS can impact the building’s fixtures, equipment, and furniture. Important documents, such as customer contracts and blueprints, can also be damaged. There are ways, however, to restore wet documents. You should consult a water restoration service as soon as possible to save your important business documents.

What Documents Can Be Saved?

Restoration services can save many types of documents, including:

  • Paper documents
  • Blueprints and drawings
  • Parchment
  • Photographs
  • Books and magazines
  • Audio and video tapes

How Does Restoration Work?
It is critical to have a professional inspect the wet documents as quickly as possible to get the best results. Proper document drying procedures must be used to successfully restore your documents. Specialists can apply vacuum freeze-dried techniques to dry out the documents. Make sure you choose a company that uses the vacuum drying method approved by the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA).
Water damage from floods or sewer backup will likely contain bacteria, pesticides, and other contaminants, which must be removed professionally. Documents can also be infected with mold and mildew. Technology using gamma irradiation can be applied to clean and sterilize your valuables. Individual pages or complete libraries of books can be deodorized as well.

How Are My Confidential Files Kept Safe?
Make sure you choose a restoration company that employs individuals who are certified to handle sensitive and personal documents in a secure and confidential manner with 24-hour surveillance. This will ensure that sensitive documents are not stolen or compromised.
Protect your documents even further by having them digitized. A professional restoration service can convert all of your paper files, photographs, and other documents into a digital format that can’t be lost or destroyed in a flood.
In the aftermath of flooding in your building, call a professional right away to help you recover all of your wet documents and other important papers.

3 Ways to Avoid Water Damage

2/15/2020 (Permalink)

Water hose, extracting water from a carpet Water extraction in a Winfield, KS home

3 Ways to Avoid Water Damage

Residents may worry about water in home spaces. The thought of waterlogged walls and carpets can simply be overwhelming? It's not necessarily simple to correct, so is it possible to avoid these obstacles? What steps can be taken to escape this annoyance? Homeowners in Winfield, KS, should have eyes open and tend to the house as much as possible.

1. Clean the Room and Yard

External objects can often be the cause of water getting inside. Make sure you check on the roof, cleaning gutters and replacing shingles. You don't want leaks popping up from open crevices. During storms, bring in patio furniture and loose objects such as heavy toys. Heavy winds turn them into projectiles that can break windows. Finally, trim up trees, avoiding branch infiltration. If breaches or pipe cleanup is required, contact a water restoration company in Winfield, KS, to evaluate the impacted rooms, offering easy and efficient methods to clean up the spaces.

2. Remove Excess Water

When water in home sits for long periods of time, it not only develops a foul odor, it becomes a breeding ground for mold spores. Set a goal to maintain a cool temperature, decreasing humidity. Run your air handler as needed, replace filters and have it cleaned. This device is on your side, pulling out the water for you. Also, place moisture absorbent products in bathrooms.

3. Be Proactive

Don't assume all is well with the property. Stay vigilant, actively looking at fixtures and walls. Simply using 5 minutes a month to glance at appliances, walls and sinks might show you tiny changes or indications that something is brewing. In addition, to avoid a broken pipe, have plumbers review the system annually, checking for small leaks or issues. This bill may seem hard to justify at the time, but it is significantly less than restoration statement.
Don't let water in home locations become a major headache. Survey the land and building occasionally, making chances as needed. Prevention is possible.

4 Ways To Reduce Water Damage

1/29/2020 (Permalink)

Fan on Invest in fans

Four Damage Tips to Help Make it Like it Never Even Happened

A pipe burst or other flooding at your Mcpherson, KS, business can be frustrating. Getting it dried out, cleaned and back to normal is the top priority. While it's best to leave the cleanup to water damage experts, there are ways to speed up recovery while waiting for help to arrive. Below are four damage tips to help make it like it never even happened.

1. Increase Air Flow

If it is not raining or too cold or humid, open all possible windows and doors to enhance circulation. Additional air movement is the main way to help things dry out.

2. Invest in Fans

Even if you don’t have high-grade, industrial fans, any fans that you have are better than none. They can be put in windows, near doors or in the area with the most water. Set them high to maximize their productivity. If they are non-rotating, be sure to occasionally move them to ensure the best airflow.

3. Remove Saturated Items

When it comes to damage tips, eliminating problems down the road is essential to getting business back to normal. Any saturated fabrics, furniture, paper, rugs and other organic materials should be removed and set outdoors to dry. By doing so, the evaporation process can be sped up and it will reduce indoor moisture levels.

4. Eliminate Excess Water

As the water sits, it can begin to spread to other areas of the building, extending the amount of damage. While you may not be able to get it all out, removing as much as possible can reduce the amount of restoration work that will be needed. If there is a significant amount, use buckets to bail out the water. High on the list of cleaning tips and tools is a wet/dry vacuum, which can be used on both hard and soft surfaces. It’s also important to wipe water off of walls, trim, shelving, and other hard surfaces to keep mold at bay.
Dealing with water where it shouldn't be is one headache business owners hope to avoid. When it happens, following these damage tips can make a big difference in the amount of time it takes to get everything back up and running.

What To Do When Your Basement Floods

12/13/2019 (Permalink)

Completely flooded basement. It is visible line showing maximum water level higher than 7 feet. Flooded basement in Salina, KS

Tips On Handling a Flooded Basement

Fixing a basement flood can be dangerous if you don’t know what you are doing. Below are some tips for handling this problem safely.

Remove the Water First

Once the water is as high as the outlets in the basement, you are at risk of electrocution. Rent a gas pump or call your local fire department to drain the water before you enter.
If you do have to go into the basement while it is still flooded, be sure to turn off the gas and electricity ahead of time. Before going into the basement, recruit a friend or family member to assist you. Bring a flashlight and watch your step.

Replace Appliances

You may want to save everything in your basement, but that is not always possible. Damaged mechanical and electrical equipment should be discarded. This includes appliances, outlets, motors and switches. Any drywall, flooring, or carpeting that was soaked by the basement flood should also be replaced.
However, you can keep the drywall that was located above the water. With the help of cleanup and restoration specialists, you may also be able to salvage some of your personal belongings. Your insurance coverage may help pay for the cost of this service.

Take Preventative Measures

After you work hard to clear out your basement, the last thing you want is another flood to occur. You can take some steps to prevent water from building up in the future. Drains can remove the fluid from the basement before it becomes a major problem.
A sump pump can help, as well. Be sure to have a backup pump or a generator that you can use if the power goes out. You should also seal any cracks or foundations in the basement floors and walls.
Fixing a basement flood is possible, but it can be hazardous and cumbersome. That is why you should take precautions to limit flooding to your Salina, KS, home.

Saving Your Carpet From Water Damage

11/27/2019 (Permalink)

Carpet with water Water damage on carpet

When your house in Hutchinson, KS, floods from a pipe break or leaking washer, you may look at your saturated floor and wonder if any of it can be salvaged. The answer can depend on several factors.

Contamination Level of Water

The first thing water restoration experts are going to need to know in order to determine if your flooring is salvageable is the flood water's contamination level:

  • Category 1 - Clean water that comes straight from a pipe or supply line
  • Category 2 - Dirty water that leaks out of an appliance or has been standing stagnant for a while
  • Category 3 - Contaminated water from the sewer line or storm flooding

If your carpet was flooded due to a pipe break, technicians will likely only need to make sure it's thoroughly dry. If, however, it is infested with sewage, it's better to just throw it out and buy new carpeting rather than try to get it clean enough to remain in your home.

Presence of Mold

When your flooring has been wet for a day or two, water damage is not the only problem you may have to address. Mold can start to grow on the carpet's surface. Pretty soon, it is so deeply embedded in the fibers that throwing it out and replacing it is the only suitable course of action.

Appearance of Stains

Water can cause anything that is brightly colored to fade onto another surface. If you have a bright red chair on your beige carpet, some of the dye from the chair is likely to seep into it during a flood. You may not be able to remove the stain, and it may not be the only stubborn spot you find on the floor after the water is removed.
After a pipe break in your home, you may be able to save your floor covering as long as the water remains clean, is removed quickly and doesn't cause stains. Once the carpet is too damaged, it's easier and less expensive to have it replaced.

Does Your Water Heater Need Flushing?

8/29/2019 (Permalink)

Somebody flushing a water heater Water heater flushing in a Fort Scott, KS home

Like any major appliance in Fort Scott, KS, your water heater needs regular maintenance. Following are step-by-step instructions to help you flush the tank and refill it with clean water ready to be heated.

The Annual Flush

A water heater flush is a pretty basic exercise in home maintenance. To quickly accomplish this task, follow these simple steps:

  1. Turn the tank thermostat to off: Located near the bottom of the container, turn it to off or to “pilot” if your heater is gas-fueled instead.
  2. Turn off the gas flow: Gas-run heaters have a pipe with a red handle to feed fuel. If you turned the thermostat to “pilot,” skip this step.
  3. Turn the cold water flow off: This is found toward the top of the water tank.
  4. Run the hot water from a sink or tub: This will help drain the tank and prevent a vacuum from forming.
  5. Open the pressure relief valve: While not necessary, it can help water to flow more easily.
  6. Connect a garden hose to the drainage spigot: Make sure the other end leads to another container to collect the water.
  7. Turn the spigot on and drain: The water will probably look brown or dirty, this just means you’re cleaning the tank.
  8. Reactivate the cold water to flush out the sediment: Let it run for a couple of minutes or until the collected water becomes clear.

Once finished, simply reverse these steps, remembering to light the pilot on gas-run heaters and to close the pressure valve when done.

It Isn’t That Hard

Even Fort Scott, KS, can’t escape ”hard water,” a term used to signify the presence of increased minerals. If left unchecked, this will eventually produce leaks and the possibility of severe water damage. By flushing your tank at least once a year, you can remove mineral deposits that have accumulated within the tank, keeping the water fresh and avoiding a buildup of sediment.

Depending on the size of your hot water heater tank and the last time it was flushed, this process could take some time. If you continue with regular maintenance, this yearly chore shouldn’t take very long at all!

Does Your Toilet Overflow When the Shower Is Running?

6/14/2019 (Permalink)

Use an auger

It feels so great to step into a hot steamy shower and rinse away your troubles, but if you step out to find your toilet overflowing, your troubles may just be beginning. Water and sewage cleaning are no joke and could cause mold or bacteria to breed. If a toilet overflow happens whenever someone is in the shower, there are a few steps you can take to remedy the situation.

Freeing a Clogged Toilet Drain

A clogged pipe between the sewer and your toilet is the most likely culprit of an overflowing toilet when you shower. Here are a few ways to try to clear the clog.

1. Use an auger. Start by running a plumber’s auger or snake into the toilet drain. Use a 25-foot hand-cranked or motorized unit. If you don’t own one, you can rent one in Hutchinson, KS. Ideally, the snake will push its way through the blockage allowing some water to get through. It may take a few attempts.

2. Remove the toilet. The clog may be bad enough to have to remove the toilet and go directly into the drainpipe. Once you feel you have broken through the clog, turn the shower on low and watch for water to back up. If, after running the water for several minutes, and it is still draining, you have likely cleared the clog.

3. Clean the cleanout. The next step would be to find your drain cleanout, remove the cap with a pipe wrench and run the snake through it. To avoid sewage cleaning, prepare the area in case pressure causes sewage to run out.

4. Call for help. If all attempts fail, call a plumber to help find the problem. They will have the equipment and training to locate and clear the clogged pipe. They may need to check further down the sewer line.

If a toilet overflow leaves a serious mess, call the local sewage remediation service in Hutchinson, KS for help. They can perform a thorough sewage cleaning process, and you can again enjoy a relaxing shower.

How To Prevent Damage From Old Pipes

4/18/2019 (Permalink)

Hair caused a pipe to clog in Hutchinson,KS

Prevent Damage from Old Pipes

If you own or rent older commercial buildings in Hutchinson, KS, you may experience special challenges when it comes to your plumbing. Older pipes, especially those made from polybutylene, make become corroded and start to turn brittle. If they have a lot of twists and turns, you may have more frequent clogs. There are a few things you can do to prevent damage resulting from old plumbing systems.

Enzymes

If the pipes in your building are frequently clogged, you need something that works within the pipes to help loosen the blockage up in order to avoid water damage from overflowing toilets or sinks. Many things could contribute to a clogged pipe, including:

  • Hair
  • Debris
  • Soap buildup
  • Lint

A monthly enzyme treatment can dissolve whatever is clogging your pipes so that water moves more freely through them. You simply pour the liquid enzyme into your drain and let the bacteria go to work. After a period of time, flush the drain with hot or boiling water, and everything should wash right through.

Replacement

If you own a building that was built between the mid-1970s to the mid-1990s, you may have polybutylene pipes. These pipes were popular during this time because they were inexpensive to manufacture and easy to install. Unfortunately, they also react to chemicals in water, making them vulnerable to breakage. The best thing to do is to replace these pipes before they break and cause extensive damage to your building that only water restoration specialists can fix.

Pumps

If your building is a rental, of course, you cannot replace the pipes altogether. You can protect your property in the building, however, by installing a sump pump in the basement and having various pumps placed on each floor that you use. By making pumps available, you can extract water more quickly, minimizing the damage that a busted pipe may cause.

Whether your main risk is polybutylene or frequent clogging, old pipes can cause flooding fast. By taking proactive steps you can protect your property from extensive damage.

Steps in the Sewage Damage Cleanup Process

3/17/2019 (Permalink)

Restored bathroom in Hutchinson, KS

Sewer Cleanup Process

Sewage damage can have a devastating impact on your home in Hutchinson, KS. It’s common to feel stressed after this type of damage has occurred, but you may feel reassured knowing what steps occur in the sewer cleanup process.

1. Finding the Root of the Problem

Sewage damage can be caused by a myriad of reasons, and in order to properly clean the home, it’s important to first understand the cause of the issue. Often, a flooded toilet or a sewer backup are causes of sewage damage. While some issues are relatively easy to fix, others may take more time. However, once the problem has been identified, the flow of water can be stopped, which will prevent further damage.

2. Assessing the Damage and Type of Contamination

Regardless of the cause of the damage, it’s important to know what damage has occurred and to what degree the water is contaminated during the sewer cleanup process. Knowing where the damage has occurred will make it easier to know what to prioritize. Water that comes from a clean source and that isn’t left standing can be removed with relative ease, whereas water that is contaminated with hazardous materials must be removed with caution. Often, it’s helpful to have water damage cleanup professionals make these assessments.

3. Cleanup and Restoration

Once the cause has been identified and the damage and type of contamination has been identified, the process of cleaning really begins. Water is safely removed from the home and individual items are sanitized. In order to remove any odors in the home, air scrubbers may be used. If structural damage has occurred, the work of restoring your home to its original state will begin.

Finding the cause of the issue, assessing the affected area and the water and cleaning and restoration are all important steps in the sewer cleanup process. Knowing what is involved in the cleanup can make you feel more at ease as your home is restored.

How To Flush Your Water Heater

1/18/2019 (Permalink)

Taking care of your water heater.

How To Flush Your Water Heater

Nobody likes it when a water heater stops working, except for that rare breed of people who enjoy cold showers. You might not want to spend a Saturday morning flushing your heater at your home in Wichita, KS , but it's one of the best ways to extend the life of your unit.

1. Gather Your Materials

Luckily, the items you need to do the job are probably sitting around your house. A garden hose, a screwdriver and an area for drainage are all you need to complete the task. Before you can do the work, you need to turn off the water heater. You should also check out the drainage area you selected, and make sure it’s not an area that will be impacted by sediment and warm water.

2. Drain the Tank

Connect the garden hose to the drain valve, and you’re ready to start draining. Go to your kitchen and turn on the hot water faucet; this allows the water to drain quicker. Next, open the water heater's drain valve and let the water flow for several minutes. Pay attention to how much sediment flows out; this can give you an idea of how often you need to perform a water heater flush. When the tank has drained, close the valve.

3. Flush the Unit

Now it's time to open the cold water supply, which you can find at the top of the tank. Let the water flow for 10 minutes, and then turn it off. Open the drain valve once more, and let the water drain out. When all of the sediment has been removed from the tank, close the drain valve.

4. Restart the System

When water is flowing smoothly from the faucet, you will know the tank is full and flowing properly. Then you can turn on the heating element.

Whether you flush your tank on your own or entrust it to a residential water maintenance service, it's a smart move. The reward you will receive by creating a longer life for your water heater is well worth sacrificing a little of your free time.

What To Do When a Sewage Backup Happens at Home

12/20/2018 (Permalink)

Drying a water damaged home in Wichita, KS

There are certain things homeowners in Wichita, KS, fear, and one of the most formidable is dealing with a sewer backup. What homeowners may not realize is that sewer issues can mean more than just the inconvenience of a flooded toilet or an unusable kitchen sink. The presence of potentially contaminated water within your home poses a serious health threat. Sewer cleanup should always be handled carefully and swiftly.

Here Are Three Steps for Managing Sewer Damage

1. Treat Sewer Problems As an Emergency

Coming into contact with any form of sewage can be dangerous, and you should assume that all water is contaminated, even if it appears clean. Ingesting contaminated water carries the risk of illness. In the event that sewage enters your living space, time is of the essence. To reduce your exposure to possible health hazards and minimize water damage, it is important to begin the sewer cleanup process immediately.

2. Disinfect and Dry

Disinfecting and drying is essential to restoring safe living conditions. Begin by getting rid of all solid and liquid waste. Be sure to remove and clean any wet carpeting or fabric. Afterwards, sanitize and dry the affected area. Experts can help provide a more thorough cleaning by using advanced technology to detect water that may not be readily visible.

3. Repair Any Damage

Once the space is clean and dry, replace any damaged materials such as flooring or wallboard. Always repair saturated or decaying building materials after a flooding incident in order to avoid mold or other contaminants.

Dealing with water damage is never fun, but if attended to promptly, sewer cleanup can be done safely and effectively. When a sewage disaster strikes, it is crucial not to delay. Whether it is the middle of the night or a holiday morning, water damage restoration specialists are available 24/7, year-round to help you restore the cleanliness and comfort of your home.

4 Ways To Tell If Your Shower Is Leaking

10/11/2018 (Permalink)

Dehumidifier helping moisture dry quickly after this bathroom was affected by water loss

The cause of a shower leak is not always obvious. Whether you notice a wet floor after showering or signs of moisture and water damage underneath your shower, here are four ways to determine the origin of a shower stall or bathtub leak.

1. Shower Pans and Leaks

Check a basement or crawlspace for signs of a leak from a first-floor shower. A shower pan leak on a higher floor may cause staining on the ceiling below. You may also notice water damage near the shower or in areas that share a common wall.

Test the pan by stopping the drain and filling the shower or bathtub about 1.5 inches deep. Wait between eight and 72 hours. Have someone walk around in the shower to determine whether weight triggers the leak. Replace shower pans that are more than 30 years old.

2. Caulking and Tiles

Spray water along a shower door track for several minutes and check for leaks. Cracked grout between tiles can also permit water to collect behind walls. Allow the area to dry completely before caulking or grouting a bathtub leak. You may also want to have mold testing and any necessary remediation completed before sealing cracked grout.

3. Shower Heads and Escutcheons

Clear clogged spray holes and check the O-ring inside a shower-head. Replace worn out cartridges, stems, or washers inside the valve. Replace the gasket or use caulk or putty on an unsealed escutcheon. Check for leaks between the head and valve by capping the shower head.

4. Drains and Lines

Pour water from buckets or a hose down the drain and have another person monitor the area beneath a shower. Drain leaks are typically caused by a cracked flange or damaged gasket.

Regardless of the source of a shower or bathtub leak, you may want to hire a plumber. If your home has sustained water damage, or you suspect that mold is growing, contact a water damage restoration service in Wichita,KS.

Do Your Bathroom Supply Lines Need Changing?

6/20/2018 (Permalink)

If you're seeing signs of a bathroom leak in your home, it may be an indication of supply line damage.

Water supply lines are used throughout the home to connect appliances like washing machines and dishwashers. In the bathroom, they connect sink faucets and toilet tanks to the plumbing system. Eventually, supply line damage can occur, which can cause bathroom leaks and potentially costly water damage. So, it's important to know that your supply lines are in good shape.

What Should You Look For?

It's easy to tell if a supply line is damaged. Some of the signs are:

• Corrosion of the steel braiding
• Bulging of the inner lining material
• Loose or cracked connector
• Leakage from a break

What Causes a Supply Line Leak?

Most supply lines have a polymer lining on the inside, made of rubber or plastic. This lining, which transports the water, is generally not strong enough on its own to stand up to the water pressure going through the line. The pressure can vary greatly depending on the municipal supply, ranging from over 100 psi on down to 50 psi. Therefore, the lining is usually wrapped in a braided stainless steel sleeve, giving it much greater strength and allowing it to stand up to a range of pressures.

The main culprit for supply line damage is chlorine. Through humidity, chlorine is able to dissolve and create hydrochloric acid. The stainless steel braiding reacts with hydrochloric acid, leading to corrosion. Ultimately, the inner tubing will bulge through the cracks in the braiding and leak.

If you have a supply line that's showing signs of wear, check your warranty. A steel-braided line will usually have a lifetime warranty, while a five- to eight-year warranty is normal for plastic lines.

If you're seeing signs of a bathroom leak in your home, it may be an indication of supply line damage. If you've already suffered water damage, be sure to make a call to a qualified professional in Wichita, KS, so that he or she can assess the situation and make the necessary repairs. For more information, visit http://www.SERVPROnorthwestwichita.com/.

How Much Damage Can Sewage Cause?

3/22/2018 (Permalink)

A sewage leak can quickly cause serious secondary damage. A leak in an environment with high humidity creates conditions ideal for the growth of black mold. Determine the type of water involved and the extent of the leak, and then take steps to address the issue as soon as possible, ideally within 24 hours.

There are several categories of water involved in leaks:

1. Category one water is clean and poses the least risk as long as a leak is quickly dried.
2. Category two water or gray water includes toilet overflow that only contains urine or water from appliances such as washing machines and dishwashers. This water may contain bacteria and viruses.
3. Category three water or black water is contaminated with fecal matter that contains microbes and other dangerous substances. A large black water leak will probably require expert damage restoration services.

Once you determine the type of water involved in a leak and the extent of the damage, you can determine whether you want to dry, clean, and disinfect the area yourself or call in damage restoration experts. Sewage leaks may cause several major types of damage:

• Water damage: Sewage involves the leaking of contaminated water, which compounds the effects of ordinary water damage.
• Mold risk: The longer sewage sits around after a leak, the more damage will be sustained and the higher the risk of black mold growth.
• Staining: Sewage tends to be dark colored and can stain flooring, furniture, and other items. Reduce or eliminate staining with steam cleaners and professional wet-dry vacuums.
• Lingering odor: If sewage is allowed to sit for a prolonged period, the smell may stay even after cleanup efforts are over. Air circulation and industrial air scrubbers can help to restore the affected area to a safe and comfortable condition.

To prevent potentially serious secondary damage such as black mold in the wake of a sewage leak, you should immediately clean and dry the affected area and prevent high humidity. If you are dealing with a serious sewage leak, you may need to contact damage restoration experts in Topeka, KS. Visit http://www.SERVPROnwwichita.com for more information on water damage. 

3 Easy Ways to Prevent Frozen Pipes

1/17/2018 (Permalink)

Frozen pipes can lead to a lot of damage around the house. Not only will you be unable to get water through certain faucets, but the pipe can burst entirely, causing a flood. You need to seek out water line repair in Wichita, KS as soon as you notice your water system not working the way it should. However, one option better than that is to simply prevent your pipes from freezing in the first place.

1. Keep the Heat Running

Homeowners may be hesitant to leave the heat running all day long even if people are going to be gone, but the slight increase in the power bill is well worth it to prevent frozen pipes. Bursting pipes can cause a lot of damage, especially if the water floods a room with a lot of valuables. A house does not have to be kept at a particularly high temperature. As long as a home’s interior is at least 50 degrees Fahrenheit, it should be fine.

2. Prop Open Interior Doors

If you are going to run the heat all day, you want to be certain you are getting the most out of it. Leave all the interior doors open so that heat can flow easily from one room to the next. This includes cupboards in the bathrooms and kitchen.

3. Let Faucets Drip

The main cause of frozen pipes is a buildup of pressure in the system. Homeowners in Wichita, KS can relieve some of this pressure by letting faucets drip throughout the day. You should ordinarily address dripping like this as soon as you can, because it can increase water bills. Similarly to keeping the heat running, the small increase is well worth it to prevent more catastrophic damage. In the event your home does develop a burst pipe, then you’ll need to contact a professional service to repair the pipes and dry the affected room. Visit http://www.SERVPROnwwichita.com for more information on water damage.

What Are the Dangers of Black Water?

11/30/2017 (Permalink)

What Are the Dangers of Black Water?

Water damage takes many different forms. One of the most dangerous to encounter in your commercial building in Wichita, KS is black water. This water typically comes around after a flood or hurricane, and damage is caused by water picking up raw sewage. However, it is not always black in appearance as suggested by its name; it is simply water infested with waste, fungi or bacteria. Such water poses many dangers and should never be ignored.

Various Pathogens

From sewage, water can pick up various bacteria that can have an array of negative health effects on humans. Some bacteria may be non-threatening, but others can be highly detrimental to one’s health.

Toxic Chemicals

There is an array of chemicals black water can become infected with. Toxins from water damage can harm the environment in addition to human bodies. Enough exposure can also result in death. For this reason, this type of water should only be handled by professionals who have the equipment and materials necessary to handle it without getting hurt themselves. Injuries can result from simply touching this infected water.

Fecal Matter

Part of water bringing up substances from the sewer means there will likely be fecal matter in the water. Not only will it make a commercial building in Wichita, KS smell gross, it can exacerbate the previously mentioned issues. It brings up its own set of bacteria and pathogens. The problem will only get worse without treatment, so it is vital to remove it as soon as possible before people in the building breathe in the fumes.

Black water from a flood can result in numerous health problems. You never know what this water contains, so it is best to leave it to professionals with the right tools. Address commercial water damage immediately because the longer it sits, the worse it gets.
Visit http://www.SERVPROnwwichita.com for more information on water damage.

5 Tips for Dealing with Water Restoration

9/12/2017 (Permalink)


5 Tips for Dealing with Water Restoration

The moment you experience water damage, you have to focus on getting the water in a home or water in a business out. Otherwise, you run the risk of severe damage, such as mold, mildew, and structural damage. A professional restoration company can help you with all of the different aspects of mitigation and restoration.

Identify the Cause

If you have water in a home or water in a business, you have to ask how it happened. It could be flood damage from a storm. It could also be a pipe break or supply line break. Depending on the cause, you have to figure out how to get the water under control. This is part of the mitigation process.

With mitigation, you have to stop the water from coming in. You might need to put sand bags around entry points if you have a flooded home or business from a storm. If it is a supply line break or a pipe break, you have to get a plumber out. Depending on where the pipe break or supply line break is, you need to assess damage behind walls. This is when it helps to call in a restoration company. They will have high-tech tools to help you identify the water damage.

Remove the Water

You have to work hard at water cleanup. If you don't get the water out of a flooded home or business due to a supply line break or pipe break, it's going to cause more water damage. The longer it sits, the more damage it could cause. As such, mitigation is the act of getting some of the water out of the building.

Part of the water cleanup might be to use pumps to help get the gallons and gallons of water out of the area. Drying everything can only be done after the water cleanup. Otherwise, everything is only going to get wet again.

Restoration professionals will use a lot of tactics for water cleanup to save as much as possible. This will minimize the cost of replacement and speed up the time it takes to restore a flooded home or business.

Any time that there is water in a home or water in a business, you have to act quickly.

Dry Out What You Can

Drying is an important process to minimize the water damage. You might be able to dry off furniture, carpeting, and even drywall. If the drying doesn't work, then those items will be added to the list of repairs and replacements to be done during the restoration phase.

High-powered dryers will be used for drying. It's just another reason to call in a restoration company. They will have the tools that will help to deal with flood damage.

Assess the Damage

Once the water is out and everything has been dried, you can assess the damage. There might be the need to pull out damaged carpeting, flooring, cabinetry, and more. Once you can figure out what has been affected by the flood damage, you can create a restoration plan. Until then, you're guessing at what needs to be done to overcome water in a home or water in a business.

Rebuild and Restore

If you have a flooded home or business, you will need to rebuild and restore what was lost. Everything that needed to be pulled out because of water damage now needs to be restored.

Contractors from a restoration company could work to rebuild countertops, install drywall, lay carpet, and much more.

Flood damage can be severe, but it's how you deal with the water restoration project that really matters.
Visit http://www.SERVPROnwwichita.com for more information on water damage.