Recent Water Damage Posts

Preventing Water Damage on Vacation

2/13/2022 (Permalink)

woman walking along beach at sunset with text box "Avoid a Vacation Disaster" If you experience water damage while you are away from your home, contact SERVPRO of Southeast Memphis as soon as possible at (901) 382-0900.

7 Steps to Preventing Water Damage While Away

According to a study done by the Insurance Institute, homeowners' highest insurance claims are water damage. Leaky or busted pipes and appliances cause millions of dollars in damage during freezing weather and storms. Leaky pipes don't take a vacation when you do and can burst, generating hundreds of dollars of repairs. Prevent water damage while your on vacation by using this checklist:

Step 1. Check for Leaks Before Going on Vacation

Check pipes under your sinks and the water heater for any rust, cracks, or damage. You should check the seals by your windows to make sure there are no cracks. Additionally, check the exterior of your house and see the condition of your roof shingles. If any show damage, getting them replaced before leaving for vacation is a good idea.

Step 2. Inspect Your Major Appliances

You must inspect the hoses connected to essential appliances in your home, such as dishwashers, washers/dryers, and refrigerators.

Step 3. Clear Out Your Gutters

Make sure to get any debris out of your rain gutters before leaving for vacation. This way, you won't have any blockages that can cause overflows which can lead to foundation problems and water damages while you're away.

Step 4. Inspect Your Sump Pump

Make sure it is in good condition and clear any debris from clogging the pit. Run a few tests, listen to the sounds it makes, and ensure that the pump's water is going outside. Install a battery-powered backup in case there is a power outage while you're away.

Step 5. Insulate Exposed Pipes

If you plan on being away from your home during the winter, it can be a good idea to insulate any exposed pipes. This will prevent them from freezing while you are away.

Step 6. Get Someone to Check on Your Home

Call a friend or hire a professional house sitter to check on your home every week while you are gone. Instruct them to ensure that the heat is always on if your vacation is during the winter. Also, show them where the water main is in case of an emergency.

Step 7. Ease Your Mind By Turning Off the Water

Lastly, if you cannot find someone to check on your home, you should turn off the water main. Drain the pipes so that they do not freeze or burst during the colder months. To do this, run the water and flush your toilet after you turn off the water. Open the cabinets under your sink to let the warm air surround the pipes.

If you experience water damage while you are away from your home, contact SERVPRO of Southeast Memphis as soon as possible at (901) 382-0900.

What to do About Roof Water Damage

2/4/2022 (Permalink)

blue water drops coming from the roof of a home in Memphis, TN Know when and if your roof is damaged to prevent future water damage to your home or business.

Homeowners know how expensive roof repairs and replacements can be. When looking to buy a new home, one of the first questions often asked is “how old is the roof?”. Different roofs typically last different lengths of time. Generally, asphalt shingle/composition roofs last around 20 years, fiber cement shingles last around 25 years, and wood shake roofs last around 30 years. Since it can thousands of dollars to replace a roof, it is important for homeowners to keep their roofs in the best shape possible.

How to Know if Your Roof is Damaged

Things like heavy rains, storms, and any type of adverse weather can reduce the life of a roof or require repairs along the way to keep it functioning. Some of the most common signs of water damage on your roof include:

  • Ceiling is discolored
  • Mold begins to grow in rings
  • Smelly odors coming from the walls
  • The texture of the flooring begins to change
  • Water begins to accumulate

Roof damage signs can be misleading since they often appear in places other than the roof. For instance, you may have roof damage but the issue appears on the ceilings, floors, attic, walls, around home appliances, or even along with the home’s exterior or foundation. The most important thing to know about roof water damage is the need to act quickly. If left untreated, damage repair can become extremely costly as the fallout reaches different areas of the home.

What to do When Your Roof Leaks

If roof water damage is discovered in your home, it is extremely important to take specific safety measures. 

  • First, catch any dripping water with buckets. 
  • Then, determine whether or not the leak is coming from the roof. 
  • Next, talk to a roofer to decide what the next step should be.
  • Finally, reach out to a water damage restoration specialist to address the issues caused by the roof problem.

At SERVPRO of Southeast Memphis, our water damage repair and restoration team is highly trained and has many years of experience in restoring a home after roof damage. Contact us today at 901) 334-9209 and we will send our team out to get your home back to normal in no time.

Black Water, Grey Water, Clean Water: The Three Types of Water Damage

1/28/2022 (Permalink)

gray flood water outside of a Memphis, TN home For any type of water damage, call the professionals at SERVPRO of Southeast Memphis.

Types of Water Damage

Water damage comes in many forms. It can occur quickly or slowly; it can be a quick fix or a significant, time-consuming property issue. When your property has water damage, SERVPRO of Southeast Memphis wants to help you!

Being educated about water damage types can help give you peace of mind and help you attack the issues quickly and efficiently. There are three general categories of water damage.

1. Clean Water

This water is clean and comes from an uncontaminated source. If this occurs, know that it is not dangerous if consumed by pets or people. This type of water damage may occur if an incoming water line bursts, you have a bathroom flood due to an overflowing sink or tub, or have a small leak from an internal water pipe. SERVPRO can help extract the water and dry surfaces out for you. It's essential to have this done by an expert, as any remaining wet areas can bring on further issues such as mold, fungus, or rotting materials.

2. Grey Water

Grey Water comes from a source with some contaminants in it. If a leak or puddle of "Clean Water" is left for too long, this can turn into Grey Water. Other sources include sump pump failures, overflowing washing machines, and even some sewage pipes. This water type may cause people and animals to become sick if their exposure is high or consumed. 

3. Black Water

Black Water is the most hazardous type of water damage that can occur. This water is too contaminated and likely comes from a natural disaster or sewage plumbing. This water may sometimes look clean but can contain microbes that can cause health effects. When it comes to home flooding emergencies, Black Water floods can be the most destructive. This is due to the water's unsanitary conditions, causing bacteria, chemicals, and toxins to absorb into the porous items in your home. Carpets, upholstery, and drywall are often destroyed in this unsalvageable disaster.

Clean and Grey Water has the potential to even turn to Black Water if left standing or unattended. Call SERVPRO of Southeast Memphis to help remove water and disinfect your home immediately if this affects your home, and avoid exposing you and your household as it can cause illness. Our team of professionals can help in any circumstances needed! We’re available 24/7 at (901) 334-9209.

3 Step Plan for a Flooded Furnace

1/28/2022 (Permalink)

furnace and water heater in a basement in Memphis, TN A flooded furnace is overwhelming. SERVPRO of Southeast Memphis can help you clean up and give you peace of mind.

A small amount of water from a broken pipe can flood a functional basement and result in a water damage nightmare, especially if the water permeates your furnace. SERVPRO of Southeast Memphis identified three steps to help keep you stress-free and organized when dealing with a flooded furnace. Following these steps will make the claims process run smoothly and help your business or home get up and running again.

1. Document the Damage for Insurance

The furnace can be the most costly loss in a flood, other damaged property also needs to be considered when documenting damage for insurance. Use the following process to record losses and assign values in a notebook or spreadsheet.

  • Photograph the damage.
  • Write down the serial number or another unique identifier if available.
  • Assign a value.

Don’t forget to include items that may have little to no monetary value but are still of high value to your business, like important documents. Search professional recovery services within the area to save irreplaceable items such as documents or photographs.

2. Investigate Coverage and Decide to Repair or Replace

A burst pipe resulting in a flooded furnace is an insurable event, so be sure to check with your provider that you are covered. If a natural disaster occurred, contact the Federal Emergency Management Agency to inquire if government aid is available. FEMA offers financing options to those who qualify for HVAC and furnace replacement costs.

According to the Air-Conditioning, Heating, and Refrigeration Institute, flooded furnaces should be replaced rather than repaired. For a professional opinion, contact a qualified heating and cooling contractor to inspect the damage. They may advise that the furnace will be operational after a total dry-out and minor electrical repair. However, the life of the unit reduces. You likely don’t want to choose repair over replacement and have a related problem surface a couple of years later, long after the claim closes.

3. Take Care of the Air Ducts

The air quality from a furnace is often only as good as the ducts it travels through. Call SERVPRO of Southeast Memphis at (901) 334-9209 to schedule a professional air duct cleaning to ensure ducts are clean, dry, and free of mold and debris.

Tasks associated with a furnace flood are something nobody wants on their to-do list. Take this systematic approach to efficiently ensure the return of a safe and comfortable environment in your commercial or residential property in Memphis, TN for years to come. To ease your mind even further, Call SERVPRO of Southeast Memphis specializes in cleaning, restoration, and construction. Whether big or small, we can make your disaster feel, "Like it never even happened." On top of that, we are local and ready to respond immediately when you need us. 

Common Signs of a Shower Leak

1/21/2022 (Permalink)

dripping shower head in Memphis, TN Don’t let your leaky faucet lead to water damage!

A shower or bathtub leak can lead to structural issues in your Memphis home's walls, flooring, and ceiling. Some shower leaks are hard to catch early on. If you know the common signs of trouble, you may be able to start investigating the source of water before the leak causes too much damage.

Water Damage

When water pools where it isn't supposed to, it can cause building materials to start breaking down. Common signs of water damage around a shower include the following:

  • The stained ceiling below the second-floor bathroom
  • Damaged flooring in bathroom
  • Stained spots on walls adjacent to the shower
  • Cracked grout in tiled showers

Mold growth could be another sign that moisture is building up inappropriately in your bathroom. If you notice any of these signs of water damage, you may want to call in some residential restoration specialists to help you fix your space.

Obvious Drips

A continually dripping faucet or showerhead is a visible sign of a leak. However, in some cases, homeowners may not be able to hear the leak. Leaky pipes can be located in the walls around your shower. Gaskets and valves that reside in the walls can deteriorate and start allowing water out. If you can't see a shower or bathtub leak, don't assume it's not there.

Malfunctioning Shower Pan

The shower pan is your shower's last line of defense. This membrane catches water and directs it to the drain. However, a shower pan leak can start due to poor installation or new cracks. If you plug a shower drain, a damaged shower pan may still allow water to flow out. Fixing this issue can get quite expensive because you may have to redo large portions of your shower or tub.

Keeping your eyes peeled for signs of a shower or bathtub leak may be a good idea. If left unchecked, these water drips can lead to severe amounts of damage to your home. For additional information regarding water damage, contact SERVPRO of Southeast Memphis at 901-334-9209 today!

How to Save Your Belongings After Water Damage

1/21/2022 (Permalink)

two men in green boots standing in water in a home in Memphis, TN Following these recommendations will help save your belongings after a water leak and, in the long run, save you money!

Water in home settings can be devastating, whether from leaking pipes or backed-up drains or toilets. While there may be nothing you can do to prevent your items from becoming waterlogged in the event of an unexpected water leak, there are some things you can do to restore your belongings after water damage occurs. Here are a few ways you can clean up various items in your Memphis home.

4 Steps to Save Your Belongings After a Water Leak

1. Separate Items

Before you officially begin the cleanup process, separate your items into those that are porous and nonporous. Porous materials may include wood, paper, rugs, and other types of fabric. Generally, these are more likely to harbor mold and bacteria from broken pipe water, so it’s essential to clean them quickly. Nonporous items are usually much easier to clean since they don’t absorb water and are less likely to harbor bacteria and mold.

2. Dry-Clean Nonporous Items

Dry cleaning may be appropriate when removing light water residue from nonporous items in your home. Items can also be dry cleaned before floor restoration professionals come in and thoroughly clean your items. 

3. Air-Dry When Appropriate

If you’re not dealing with dangerous water, such as sewage, it may be appropriate to gently air-dry most of your belongings. If possible, do so indoors unless the weather outdoors is ideal. You can increase the airflow inside your home using open windows, air conditioners, and fans. 

4. Toss Dangerous Items

Depending on the nature of floodwater in home settings, it may be dangerous to keep saturated items. If there is a high likelihood of the floodwater containing harmful bacteria, it may be best to throw away contaminated objects. In other cases, professionals may be able to safely clean and salvage some of your valuables. 

While you may be able to clean some of your belongings that water has damaged in your home, safety should always be your top priority, whether you’re dealing with a broken pipe or a sewer backup. It’s best to wait for professional help to arrive for help with dry-cleaning or salvaging contaminated items. 

Need Help with Water Damage?

Call SERVPRO of Southeast Memphis at 901-334-9209 for additional information regarding water damage. We can professionally clean and restore the contents of your home. We are experts in water damage restoration and have top-notch equipment to dry out your home and get your life back on track as quickly as possible.

Easy Ways You Can Prevent Your Home From Water Damage

1/19/2022 (Permalink)

drain snake being pulled out of a drain clogged with hair to prevent water damage, SERVPRO logo Follow these steps to help prevent water damage to your home.

Water damage is one of the most costly disasters your home or business can experience. The Insurance Information Institute estimates that billions are spent on water damage each year. View these suggestions from SERVPRO of Southeast Memphis for preventing water damage

1. Be careful where you plant.

Some plants and trees, like weeping willows, have pretty invasive roots. If you’re not careful, they’ll grow right into your sprinkler system, drainage field, pipes, and septic tanks. Plan before you plant to keep roots away from any water lines.

2. Clean out roof gutters.

On a rainy day, a clogged gutter can send water spilling into your home’s foundation, through the roof, or down to your basement. That could cause some severe water damage So next time you’re doing some seasonal cleaning, make sure those gutters are clean. If your gutters are too high, be safe, and get a professional to check them.

3. Use a drain snake instead of unclogging chemicals.

Most folks don’t realize these chemicals are eating away at their pipes (and they might not be too good for you either). If you rely on them a lot, you could be setting yourself up for leaks. That’s why owning a drain snake is an excellent solution to clear away clogs. They’re pretty inexpensive, you can get them at your local hardware store, and they can cut through most any clog you’ll have without damaging pipes or making your eyes red and teary.


4. Never pour grease down your sink.

It doesn’t matter if you flush it with hot or cold water; grease can still cling to your pipes and could even cause some severe damage and blockage. The safest thing to do is pour your grease into an empty can and either let it sit or put it in the refrigerator. Once it hardens, you can toss it in the trash and get rid of it. Done and done. However, we know that water and flooding emergencies can happen any time, so we’re ready 24 hours a day, 7 days a week – including holidays. Contact us at  901-334-9209.