Recent Storm Damage Posts

What Will You Do When Your Power Goes Out For A Long Time?

8/2/2022 (Permalink)

Lightning Are you prepared for an extended power outage?

Power Outages

Summer storms here in Metro Detroit can bring on flooding, yes... but also power outages.  And, extended power outages may impact the whole community and the economy.  A power outage is when the electrical power goes out unexpectedly.  A power outage may:

  • Disrupt communications, water, and transportation.
  • Close retail businesses, grocery stores, gas stations, ATMs, banks, and other services.
  • Cause food spoilage and water contamination.
  • Prevent use of medical devices.

PROTECT YOURSELF DURING A POWER OUTAGE:

  • Keep freezers and refrigerators closed.
  • Only use generators outdoors and away from windows.  Also, have extra fuel for the generator.
  • Do not use a gas stove to heat your home.
  • Disconnect appliances and electronics to avoid damage from electrical surges.
  • Have alternate plans for refrigerating medicines or using power-dependent medical devices.
  • If safe, go to an alternate location for heat or cooling.
  • Check on neighbors.

HOW TO STAY SAFE WHEN A POWER OUTAGE THREATENS: 

Prepare NOW

  • Take an inventory of the items you need that rely on electricity.
  • Talk to your medical provider about a power outage plan for medical devices powered by electricity and refrigerated medicines.  Find out how long medication can be stored at higher temperatures and get specific guidance for any medications that are critical for life.
  • Plan for batteries and other alternatives to meet your needs when the power goes out.
  • Sign up for local alerts and warning systems whether you live in Birmingham, Bloomfield Hills, Clawson or Troy, Michigan.  Monitor weather reports and alerts on your smartphone, tablet or PC.
  • Install carbon monoxide detectors with battery backup in central locations on every level of your home.
  • Determine whether your home phone will work in a power outage and how long battery backup will last.
  • Review the supplies that are available in case of a power outage.  Have flashlights with extra batteries for every household member.  Have enough nonperishable food and water.
  • Use a thermometer in the refrigerator and freezer so that you can know the temperature when the power is restored.  Throw out food if the temperature is 40 degrees or higher.
  • Keep mobile phones and other electric equipment charged and gas tanks full

Get yourself prepared!!

SERVPRO Of North Oakland County - Call us today!

248-439-1160

What Can You Do Before A Thunderstorm Hits Oakland County?

7/25/2022 (Permalink)

Lightning Strike Don't hesitate when you're dealing with damage after a thunderstorm. Call SERVPRO today!

Metro Detroit thunderstorms can be dangerous and one shouldn't take for granted.  Every thunderstorm produces lightning and other hazardous weather conditions, which can include tornadoes, strong winds, hail, and flash flooding.

In Oakland County we tend to get a mix of heavy rain, lightning and fierce winds.  Below are some fantastic tips to help you prepare on what to do before and during a thunderstorm.

What To Do Before A Thunderstorm:

  • To begin preparing, you should build an emergency kit and make a family communications plan.
  • Remove dead or rotting trees and branches that could fall and cause injury or damage during a severe thunderstorm.
  • Postpone any outdoor activities.
  • Secure outdoor objects that could blow away or cause damage.
  • Get inside a home, building, or hard-top automobile (not a convertible).
  • Remember, rubber-soled shoes and rubber tires provide NO protection from lightning.  However, the steel frame of a hard-topped vehicle provides increased protection if you are not touching metal.
  • Close any windows and secure outside doors.
  • Unplug any electronic equipment well before the storm arrives.

SERVPRO of North Oakland County urges each and every one of you to prepare before a thunderstorm comes, and whenever they do come, SERVPRO of North Oakland County will be there for you!

Metro Detroit Summer Storms Can Lead To Flash Flooding

7/19/2022 (Permalink)

A flooded street. Caution is required when driving through flooded roads.

A lot of people in Metro Detroit enjoy a good rainstorm.  Who doesn't, right?  Especially when it's in the 90's in Birmingham, Bloomfield Hills & Troy, MI!  However, some thunderstorms can lead to flash flooding in most areas with heavy rainfall.  It's important to know your surroundings and keeping up with local weather alerts. 

Below are a few tips to be mindful of during the next storm in North Oakland County:

  • Flooded Roadways - you should turn around and find another route. 
  • Sand Bags (keep stock of sand bags to assist with preventing water intrusion).
  • Stay Tuned in with your local weather station or weather Apps for all of the latest updates.
  • Don't drink the municipal water if there is extreme flash flooding (make sure to boil water to destroy most types of disease-causing microorganisms).
  • Be overprotective.
  • Keep away from moving water.
  • Check on your neighbors and family members.
  • Have emergency plan in place.

When the water has rescinded and its time to start the cleaning process use these tips:

  • Get Professional Help (Call SERVPRO of North Oakland County).
  • Wear PPE (disinfection protection) when you can.
  • Throw away food items that came in contact with the flood water.
  • Keep an eye out for Scammers.  They're out there and preying on the most vulnerable.
  • Contact your insurance agent, review your homeowners policy & file an insurance claim.

Overwhelmed or drained by the recent events?  SERVPRO of North Oakland County is here to help. Give us a call and our office will assist you with your claim.

248-439-1160

What Should You Do After A Summer Storm?

7/15/2022 (Permalink)

SERVPRO Logo SERVPRO of North Oakland County. Let us help you after a storm.

Intense Summer storms are all over Michigan and Metro Detroit, and there is a chance that your beautiful Clawson, Madison Heights, or Troy, MI home may be affected by hail, wind, rain, tree damage, and other debris at some point.  Not experiencing substantial damage during a storm truly seems to just be the luck of the draw, and only time will tell when you may experience this type of loss at the worst of times.

What do I do After Storm Damage?

If you experience severe storm damage, the first thing we would recommend you do is reach out to  SERVPRO of North Oakland County as soon as possible.  We have provided emergency storm damage services to Metro Detroit homes and businesses for many years.  Below are some of the mitigation needs we have seen and taken care of after a storm:

  • Exterior Damage: Wind, hail, and tree debris can break your windows, strip your siding, and even put holes in your roof.  There may be a possibility that the openings have been compromised and need to be secured as well as protected to prevent further damage.  If a roof has been damaged to a point it is leaking or worse, we can provide a temporary roof cover to prevent additional water intrusion.
  • Obstructive Debris: Can include large tree branches falling into your home or roof and interferes with your daily life.  It could also affect the structural element of your home as well as shatter the glass in your windows.  No matter what it is, the debris will need to be removed for the safety of your home and family.
  • Flooding: With relentless rain, the chances of a flooding is substantially higher, and difficult for a sump pump to keep up with, even if it is from a roof leak.  We have specialized equipment that is capable of removing water from hard surfaces and carpeting, preventing additional losses from occurring.

SERVPRO of North Oakland County is available to help with your emergency property damage. Emergency situations are our specialty, and our qualified teams are committed to the safety of everyone involved.  If you are in need of our services, please contact us today at 248-439-1160.

SERVPRO of North Oakland County Can Help You After A Storm Comes Through!

3/20/2022 (Permalink)

SERVPRO Storm Team Connect With SERVPRO Of North Oakland County After A Storm Damages Your Home Or Business!

Is Mold Threatening your Birmingham, Clawson or Troy, MI Home or Business?

If your home or business has a moisture issue after a storm, there could be mold growth festering.  After a storm, safely assessing potential damage is very important.  Damages may not mean a damaged roof from high-speed winds, or broken windows from tree branches.  Sometimes, moist, damp areas occur after excess moisture in the crawlspace from high water levels seep through cracks or poor coverage of the access door and threaten microbial growth.  Mold can thrive after a Spring or Summer storm because of humidity and wet conditions.  These popular mold growth environments are characterized as a crawlspace, basement, or other areas that were previously affected from a water loss that have gone unnoticed and now have unwanted, excess moisture.

Measures to Remediate Mold

It does not take long for living organisms like Mold to being to develop and grow.  Spores are found in an outside environment but can transfer inside a structure if mold finds the perfect living environment – typically on wet, organic materials like sheetrock (paper) or wood.

Choosing the Right Team

Calling SERVPRO® of North Oakland County is central to assuring that our team of experts can mitigate mold growth and keep mold away through expert diagnosis and processes.  It is important to remove all outside factors that could promote mold growth such as wet insulation, wet sheetrock, essentially removing the molds access to its food source.

If you believe you have spotted mold growth in your home or crawlspace, call SERVPRO® of North Oakland County for help and to prevent potential health hazards.  Our technicians are always prepared to conduct mold testing, identify potential sources of mold, and remediate.

If your home and/or crawlspace becomes wet after a storm, our crews are Here to Help® by being available 24/7 – 365, SERVPRO® of North Oakland County today at 248-439-1160!

Winter Storms Can Do Serious Water Damage If You Don’t Prepare Properly

2/28/2022 (Permalink)

SERVPRO Crew Members Don’t Let Snow Melt Get Into Your Home

Around Metro Detroit, one typically doesn’t think of floods in the middle of winter, but they do exist and happen more than you think.  Snowmelt flooding happens when there is a quick change in temperature change.  The temperature change can cause snow to melt and could potentially flood your basement.  Basement flooding during the winter is mostly caused by melting snow entering the home because of faulty gutters, cracks in foundations and improper runoff.  

Just as an example, ten inches of snow can melt into one inch of water and it is already on soil, unlike rain.  Obviously, the heavier snowfall, the more snowmelt.  A quick temperature change can cause a significant amount of water on the soil around your home.  If the water cannot flow away from your home’s foundation, it can ultimately enter your home.  

Snowmelt flooding can damage the floors, walls, furniture and personal items in your basement.  It also introduces potential water damage and mold in your basement as well.  

Snowmelt Safety Tips:  

  • Shovel snow away from your home.  
  • Keep snow and ice buildup off drainage areas.  
  • Inspect basement walls for cracks  
  • Check your roof for ice and snow buildup.  
  • Inspect your gutters and downspouts.  
  • Clear snow from your roof to prevent buildups.

We are hear for you and ready to help.  Please call us at 248-439-1160

How To Keep Your Pipes From Freezing

12/2/2021 (Permalink)

SERVPRO Logo Here are some great tips for preventing frozen pipes and mitigating potential damage that they can cause.

Living in Southeast Michigan, we all know sub-zero temperatures are ahead and Michigan winters can be brutal.  With frigid temperatures and winter storms coming, now is the time to learn more about how to avoid frozen pipes and water damage that can occur if those pipes expand and burst.  Frozen pipes are actually very preventable, SERVPRO offers the following tips for preventing frozen pipes and mitigating potential damage that they can cause.  

To prevent frozen pipes and avoid any potential damage: 

  • Insulate all exposed pipes in your property.  Pay close attention to where pipes may be unheated, such as the basement, attic, garage, crawl space, and under cabinets in the kitchen and bathroom. 
  • Maintain a consistent temperature through your house day and night. 
  • Close any valves located inside that supply water outdoors and open outside valves to properly drain any excess water remaining in the pipes. 
  • Remove, drain, and store hoses used outdoors. 
  • In especially freezing temperatures, let your faucet trickle; running water is less likely to freeze. 
  • If you will be leaving your home unoccupied for an extended period, leave the heat on and set to a temperature no lower than 55° F. 

Thawing Out a Frozen Pipe: 

  • If you turn on a faucet and only a few drips come out, you may have a frozen pipe. Typically, frozen pipes are found along exterior walls or where your water service enters your home through the foundation. 
  • Leave the faucet on while treating any frozen pipes, as flowing water will help melt the ice. 
  • Apply heat to the frozen section of the pipe by using an electric heating pad, an electric hair dryer, or wrapping pipes with towels soaked in hot water.  Do not use a blowtorch, kerosene or propane heater, or other open flame device. 
  • Check all other faucets in your home to see if you have additional frozen pipes.  If one pipe freezes, others may freeze too. 

Cold weather, snow, and ice storms can cause severe damage to your Birmingham, Clawson, or Troy, MI home or business.  When these types of disasters strike, immediate action is necessary to prevent additional damage to your property. SERVPRO of North Oakland County has the winter storm experience, expertise, and the resources to remediate damage caused by winter weather.  We are always here to help!  Call us today at 248-439-1160

How Do You Get Rid Of Those Awful Smells After A Flood?

8/3/2021 (Permalink)

Flooded Home Don’t Try To Solve All Of Your Problems After A Storm And Flooded Home. We Have The People And Equipment To Help!

The water damage that occurs when your Beverly Hills, Clawson or Madison Heights, MI home floods often come with odors and mold growth that continue to seep into your residence long after the water has subsided.  You can take care to eliminate odors and preserve the safety of your dwelling with the following measures: 

Air Things Out 

Open all doors and windows to allow air to circulate in your residence.  This should help dissipate any lingering smells that remain and will also facilitate drying of the affected areas. 

Dry the Wet Areas 

You may install dehumidifiers to speed up the drying process.  Removing moisture from porous and absorbent surfaces such as carpet and upholstery can greatly reduce the chance of foul aromas remaining after the flood and can mitigate the appearance of mold. 

Deodorize Your Home 

There are natural and inexpensive methods that you can utilize to expedite the deodorizing process in your house.  Baking soda sprinkled into carpets or other absorbent surfaces can be vacuumed up, greatly with getting rid of foul odors.  On less porous surfaces, vinegar applied liberally can aid in combating persistent smells. 

Keep an Eye Out for Mold 

As with any area that has had prolonged exposure to moisture, mold growth can be a threat that, if not addressed immediately, poses a potentially recurrent problem that can present itself throughout the life span of your residence.  It is imperative that proper steps are taken to ensure that mold and spores do not have the opportunity to spread in your home. 

Be Aware of Contaminants 

Sewage loss can lead to your home being contaminated by sewage contents when flood water finds its way past your threshold.  This can leave behind an overpowering smell even after the moisture has been removed due to the bacteria in the water. These horrendous smells often cannot be removed by household cleaners and require the services of a professional flood restoration company. 

Why Choose SERVPRO? 

We have the training and equipment to identify and eliminate these offensive odors. By identifying the cause of the odor and determining the conditions where it contacts surfaces, the odor can often be removed over time without a trace.  Our technicians have access to several odor removal products capable of penetrating surfaces to neutralize an unpleasant odor thoroughly. 

The science of identifying and eliminating odors can be a tricky thing, so give us a call at 248-439-1160 and leave the restoration to us!

What Do You Know About Lightning?

7/27/2021 (Permalink)

A Lighting Bolt Lightning strikes can do an incredible amount of damage.

We get a ton of thunderstorms here in Metro Detroit, MI.  During thunderstorms, many of us like to sit and watch the bright flashes of lightning.  It can be peaceful just to watch and listen as lightning and thunder strikes with the smooth sound of rain in the background.  Since we are in thunderstorm season, let's learn about lightning! 

The National Geographic defines lightning as an electrical discharge caused by imbalances between storm clouds and the ground, or within the clouds themselves. Most of the time, lightning occurs within the clouds.   

Here are some interesting facts you might not know about lightning: 

  • Lightning creates heat hotter than the sun – Experts believe that lightning can be as hot as 50,000 degrees Fahrenheit. 
  • Lightning can strike the same place more than once – Tall buildings or areas with conducive topography can see numerous lightning strikes.  For example, the Empire State Building has been reportedly struck by lightning around 23 times per year. 
  • Lightning strikes multiple places at once – A single lightning bolt can strike more than one place at the same time.  A videographer from Chicago once recorded a single lightning strike hitting the Willis Tower, Trump Tower and the John Hancock Building, three of city’s tallest buildings. 
  • Lighting can be up to 90 miles long – Martin Uman, lightning researcher, detected lightning channels as long as 90 miles. 
  • Florida experiences more lightning than any other state – Out of the top 15 counties in the United States with the most lightning strikes in 2018, 14 were in Florida. 
  • Venezuela experiences more lightning more than anywhere – Lake Maracaibo holds the record for “highest concentration of lightning,” according to The Guinness Book of World Records. 
  • More than 1 billion lightning strikes hit earth annually – The planet is hit by lightning an average of 1.4 billion times per year.  If each of those strikes hit a person, humanity would come to an end in five years.
  • Thunder does not exist without lightning – Thunder is the sound of lightning, it is the noise created as air expands and contracts rapidly in the lightning’s resonating tube. 
  • A lightning bolt can have up to a billion volts of electricity – This is about the same amount of power as 79.4 million car batteries. 
  • Benjamin Franklin came up with lightning protection – Franklin came up with the idea of securing lightning rods to the tops of buildings to protect structures from the impact of lightning. 

For more interesting facts about lightning, please go to The National Geographic and BestLife

Are You Experiencing Storm Damage?

7/21/2021 (Permalink)

Stormy Lightning Prepare an emergency ready plan for all seasons. We can help you do that. Call SERVPRO today!

Heavy rainfall causing floods and storms can lead to damage to your home or business in no time. SERVPRO of North Oakland County wants Bingham Farms, Birmingham, Bloomfield Hills & Troy, MI residents to know that when a storm damages your home or business, our highly trained professionals will respond to cleanup and restore your property to pre-damage condition.  Our ability to immediately respond to a storm emergency helps to minimize the damage and the cleaning and restoration costs. 

Here are some of the services we provide: 

  • Emergency contact 24/7 
  • Inspection and damage assessment 
  • Water removal and water extraction 
  • Drying and dehumidification services 
  • Cleaning and repair 
  • Odor removal 
  • Restoration 

What To Do Until Help Arrives: 

  • 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. 

When water damage strikes, a fast response is critical.  Day or night, Metro Detroit / Oakland County residents and business owners can expect us to respond immediately to your water emergency.  If you’re experiencing water damage from a storm, call SERVPRO of North Oakland County at 248-439-1160

Is Your Home In A Flood Zone?

7/15/2021 (Permalink)

Flooded Home How Do You Know If Your Home Is In A Flood Zone?

Are you wondering if your Clawson, Madison Heights or Troy, MI home is a high flood risk?  One way to know this is to determine if your home is located in a flood zone. Here are a few things you may wish to know about these zones and how they affect your home. 

What Are Flood Zones 

Flood zones are areas that exhibit geographic qualities that make them more prone to flooding.  This may include being at the bottom of a watershed, coastal areas, areas near rivers, and areas that experience frequent storms.  FEMA sets these risk levels, and they should be marked on your local communities Flood Insurance Rate Map (FIRM), which you can look at by going to your local zoning office. 

Is Flood Insurance Necessary 

In the event your home is determined to be at risk by its position in a flood zone, you may be wondering what, if any, addition insurance will be required.  The best way to determine this is to talk to your insurance agent about what is included in your existing plan, and if any supplemental plans are available for additional coverage.  It is important to note than in many cases flood insurance is considered a separate policy. 

How to Deal with a Flood in the Home 

If a storm does cause flooding in your home, then it is best to contact a flood damage restoration service as quickly as possible.  These professionals have the tools necessary to move large quantities of water and can also make any repairs your home may need.  Your restoration team can also check for any additional problems flood water may cause, such as potential mold growth. 

As explained earlier flood zones are areas that exhibit geographic qualities that make them more prone to a flood.  It is important to note that in some cases having a home inside a flood zone can affect your flood insurance coverage. 

If your home does experience flooding, we are here to help!  Our team, SERVPRO of North Oakland County, has experience with flood damage, and we will work hard to make it “Like it never even happened.” 

There Is No One Better To Contact After A Disastrous Storm

3/18/2021 (Permalink)

A leaking ceiling after a storm. SERVPRO is here to help you make it, "Like it never even happened." Contact us today!

Unexpected emergencies like severe weather call for immediate action.  SERVPRO of North Oakland County knows immediate reaction to the disaster is important to helping you get your life back to normal.

Utilizing our 1-4-8 Service Response Guidelines, SERVPRO of North Oakland County strive to:

  • Contact you within 1 hour from notice of loss arrange for your service.
  • Be on-site to begin mitigation services within 4 hours of notification.
  • Provide verbal briefing of scope to you within 8 business hours of on-site arrival.

SERVPRO of North Oakland County can also perform pack-out services, which is removing salvageable personal property from the affected area for off-site cleaning and storage.

Since we are locally owned and operated, we can respond quicker with the right resources, which is extremely important.  A fast response lessens the damage, limits further damage, and reduces the restoration cost.  We are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

When storms hit Oakland County, MI we can scale our resources to handle a large storm or flooding disaster.  We can access equipment and personnel from a network of 1800 Franchises across the country and elite Disaster Recovery Teams that are strategically located throughout the United States.

Call us today!  248-439-1160  We Are Here To Help!

Will The Winter Snowmelt Get To Your Basement?

3/1/2021 (Permalink)

SERVPRO Logo Winter Snowmelt Can Be A Huge Pain!

Typically, one doesn’t think of floods in the middle of winter, but they do exist and happen more than you think.  Snowmelt flooding happens when there is a quick change in temperature change.  The temperature change can cause snow to melt and could potentially flood your Birmingham & Troy, MI basement.  Basement flooding during the winter is mostly caused by melting snow entering the home because of faulty gutters, cracks in foundations and improper runoff.

Just as an example, ten inches of snow can melt into one inch of water and it is already on soil, unlike rain.  Obviously, the heavier snowfall, the more snowmelt.  A quick temperature change can cause a significant amount of water on the soil around your home.  If the water cannot flow away from your home’s foundation, it can ultimately enter your home.

Snowmelt flooding can damage the floors, walls, furniture and personal items in your basement.  It also introduces potential water damage and mold in your basement as well.

Snowmelt Safety Tips:

  • Shovel snow away from your home.
  • Keep snow and ice buildup off drainage areas.
  • Inspect basement walls for cracks.
  • Check your roof for ice and snow buildup.
  • Inspect your gutters and downspouts.
  • Clear snow from your roof to prevent buildups.

If you experience damage in your basement from snowmelt, SERVPRO® of North Oakland County can make it “Like it never even happened.” Our services to help restore a basement after flooding include:

  • Water Removal and Dehumidification
  • Mold Mitigation and Remediation
  • Move Outs and Contents Restoration
  • Air Ducts and HVAC
  • Deodorization
  • Carpet and Hard Floors Cleaning

SERVPRO® of North Oakland County is here to help!  For more information on snowmelt flooding damage, call 248-439-1160.

Do You Have A Winter Storm Kit Ready To Go?

12/2/2020 (Permalink)

A Wintery Snow Image Don’t Get Caught In A Winter Storm Without A Storm Kit

Winter is almost officially here and our cold weather, snow, and ice storms can cause severe damage and power outages to your home or business.  When these types of disasters strike, immediate action is necessary to prevent additional damage to your property. SERVPRO of North Oakland County is always here to help and want to give you tips on a basic emergency kit in case the unpredictable happens.

In a crazy year filled with the unexpected, one thing that 2020 has shown us is to always be prepared.  Here are some basic you should have in your Emergency Storm Kit.

Basic emergency supply kit should include these recommended items:

  • Water (one gallon per person per day for at least three days, for drinking and sanitation)
  • Food (at least a three-day supply of non-perishable food)
  • Battery-powered or hand crank radio and a NOAA Weather Radio with tone alert
  • Flashlight
  • First aid kit
  • Extra batteries
  • Whistle (to signal for help)
  • Dust mask (to help filter contaminated air)
  • Plastic sheeting and duct tape (to shelter in place)
  • Moist towelettes, garbage bags and plastic ties (for personal sanitation)
  • Wrench or pliers (to turn off utilities)
  • Manual can opener (for food)
  • Local maps
  • Cell phone with chargers and a backup battery

Also look at ready.gov for more ideas on emergency kits! 

Michigan is well known for its constant changes in weather, making our homes and businesses an easy target for winter storm damage.  That is why we here at SERVPRO of North Oakland County are ready to help 24/7.  We will work around the clock to get your property back to preloss condition.

Protect Your Property From Storm Water

8/3/2020 (Permalink)

Picture of storm drain with water flowing in it. Storm Water Runoff Can Do Serious Damage To Your Troy, MI Property

Stormwater runoff is rain that has not been soaked into the ground, so it flows over the ground until it finds somewhere to go. 

Ideally, the water would find a stream or river to flow into, but this is not always the case.  Sometimes the water will flow straight into your Clawson, Madison Heights or Troy, MI home.  Water damage is never fun, and trying to get rid of water as well as clean up the rest of the mess a storm has left behind can be a real hassle. 

The best way to handle stormwater runoff is to make sure it doesn’t happen to begin with.  If you are up for a bit of landscaping, you can optimize your yard to keep stormwater away from your building.

  • Swales: Simply put, a swale is just a type of trench meant to carry water and redirect it away from something important.  If you decide to install swales in your yard, make sure they are redirecting somewhere that the water will not cause damage such as a stream or pond.
  • Rain Gardens: These gardens are designed with plants that are able to take up excess water to keep it from flowing freely.  They also help filter the water so that the water that does reach ponds and rivers tends to be cleaner than water that has just flowed over driveways and roads.
  • Draining Driveways: Driveways are one of the largest contributors to stormwater runoff.  Installing drainage areas on the sides of the pavement or using gravel can help minimize the amount of water that becomes runoff.

Sometimes there is so much runoff that no matter what you do, your house may suffer from some water damage.  If that is the case, call SERVPRO of North Oakland County today at 248-439-1160 to see how we can help return your home to normal!

Steps To Follow When Driving Through Storm Water

7/27/2020 (Permalink)

Image of a car driving through flooded street. Driving through storm water on roads is very risky. Be extra careful!

Since we are fully entrenched in Summer Storms around Birmingham, Bloomfield, Township and Troy, MI., here is a great refresher on driving in the rain and flooded streets.

Did you know nearly half (47%) of all weather-related car accidents — more than 700,000 a year — are due to rain?  Read below for our tips on how to drive safely in the rain.

Here are 10 tips for driving in the rain:

Step 1. Exercise caution. Engine oil and grease build-up on roads and highways over time, and when combined with precipitation, you’ve got the equivalent of an automotive Slip ‘N Slide.

Step 2. Slow down.  Wet pavement causes tires to lose traction and vehicles become more difficult to handle.

Step 3. Use headlights.  Always use headlights in the rain – even if it’s just a sprinkle. Headlights help you see and be seen in wet weather.

Step 4. Keep your windshield wipers in tip-top shape.  Summer can wreak havoc on your blades, so get them checked before fall’s showers arrive.

Step 5. Defog your windows.  Precipitation can cause your windshield to quickly fog up, so use the front and rear defrosters to maximize visibility.

Step 6. Avoid pooling water.  By splashing through puddles you can impair your vision and other drivers’.  Additionally, standing water often shields potholes and debris from view and it can reduce the effectiveness of your vehicle’s brakes.

Step 7. If your car begins to hydroplane, do not brake or turn the wheel abruptly as this may cause your vehicle to go into a skid or spin.  Take your foot off the gas and keep the wheel straight until your car reclaims traction.

Step 8. Increase your following distance.  Slick roads, wet brakes and reduced visibility can lead to collisions.  Give other vehicles plenty of room and brake early with reduced force.

Step 9. Don’t use cruise control.  It can cause your car to accelerate when hydroplaning and reduces driver attentiveness.

Step 10. Drive in the tracks of the car in front of you.  This allows the vehicle ahead to displace any standing water that’s on the road.

By employing these safe driving techniques you can keep yourself and your passengers safe during spring drizzles and downpours.  Rainy roads can be dangerous, but if we all slow down and use extra caution, rainy days might actually be a little brighter.

What Do You Know About Lightning?

7/20/2020 (Permalink)

A Great Lightning Photo Don’t Mess With Nature

Michigan summers are the best, no question, but the thunderstorms barreling through can be a punishing blow to your home or business.  During thunderstorms, many of us like to sit and watch the bright flashes of lightning.  It can be peaceful just to watch and listen as lightning and thunder strikes with the smooth sound of rain in the background.  Since we are in thunderstorm season, let's learn about lightning!

The National Geographic defines lightning as an electrical discharge caused by imbalances between storm clouds and the ground, or within the clouds themselves.  Most of the time, lightning occurs within the clouds.  

Here are some interesting facts you might not know about lightning:

  • Lightning creates heat hotter than the sun – Experts believe that lightning can be as hot as 50,000 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Lightning can strike the same place more than once – Tall buildings or areas with conducive topography can see numerous lightning strikes. For example, the Empire State Building has been reportedly struck by lightning around 23 times per year.
  • Lightning strikes multiple places at once – A single lightning bolt can strike more than one place at the same time. A videographer from Chicago once recorded a single lightning strike hitting the Willis Tower, Trump Tower and the John Hancock Building, three of the city’s tallest buildings.
  • Lighting can be up to 90 miles long – Martin Uman, lightning researcher, detected lightning channels as long as 90 miles.
  • Florida experiences more lightning than any other state – Out of the top 15 counties in the United States with the most lightning strikes in 2018, 14 were in Florida.
  • Venezuela experiences more lightning more than anywhere – Lake Maracaibo holds the record for “highest concentration of lightning,” according to The Guinness Book of World Records.
  • More than 1 billion lightning strikes hit earth annually – The planet is hit by lightning an average of 1.4 billion times per year. If each of those strikes hit a person, humanity would come to an end in five years.
  • Thunder does not exist without lightning – Thunder is the sound of lightning, it is the noise created as air expands and contracts rapidly in the lightning’s resonating tube.
  • A lightning bolt can have up to a billion volts of electricity – This is about the same amount of power as 79.4 million car batteries.
  • Benjamin Franklin came up with lightning protection – Franklin came up with the idea of securing lightning rods to the tops of buildings to protect structures from the impact of lightning.

Be careful out there.  Troy, Clawson, & Madison Heights, MI storms can be brutal.  Call us when you’re dealing with the aftermath of lightning strikes.  248-439-1160!

For more interesting facts about lightning, go to The National Geographic and BestLife.

Storms & Standing Water

7/14/2020 (Permalink)

Picture of standing water Keep out of the standing water. It can be dangerous.

When the summer storms come barreling through, and when floodwater enters your Birmingham, Bloomfield Hills, and Troy, MI home or business, it can cause "standing water.”  Standing water is a pool of water that does not flow.  This can be a dangerous thing if it is not dealt with properly.  Standing water should be dealt with right away.  The cleanup can sometimes take up to 10 or 11 days to completely disappear unless it is mitigated immediately.  Here are some protective measures to take into consideration when dealing with standing water:

Stay Away Out of Standing Water

  • Sewage, debris, and other unpleasant things can be in the standing water leftovers
  • Standing water is a breeding ground for bacteria and other parasites
  • Swimming, wading, or rafting can make you sick
  • Wash your hands after contact with standing water
  • Do not drink the water
  • Water conducts electricity.  Underground power lines can give you a dangerous shock

Standing Water vs. Animals:

  • Snakes and other animals may get into your home or building.  Wear work boots and heavy gloves when you clean up
  • Mosquitoes can breed and grow in standing water
  • Some animals might find your home or business a cozy place to live
  • If tap water is unsafe to drink, it is unsafe for your pets
  • If you find yourself dealing with standing water of any kind, we are here to help make it “Like it never even happened."

Call us today at 248-439-1160.  We are Here To Help!

Protect Your Property When Dealing With Flood Waters

3/19/2020 (Permalink)

Flooded street For all of your water damage restoration needs, call SERVPRO today!

Flash Flood Warning!! -- That dreaded alert many of us fear because of the concerns with our homes might possibly be affected by it.  SERVPRO of North Oakland County understands that your Clawson or Madison Heitghts, MI home is more than a structure: it's your family’s furniture, clothing, keepsakes, and other belongings that help transform a house into a home.  Here are some helpful suggestions on how to protect your property just in case disaster happens.

 How to Protect Your Property:

  • Keep insurance policies, documents, and other valuables in a safe-deposit box.  Keep them in a place where it's least likely to be damaged by a flood.
  • Raise your furnace, water heater, and electric panel to higher floors if there are areas in your home that are capable of being flooded. 
  • Install check valves in building sewer traps to prevent flood water from backing up into drains of your home. 
  • Seal walls in basements with waterproofing elements to avoid leakage through cracks. 

Call us today when you’re dealing with any flood water issues.  248-439-1160

You'll Want Fire & Water Restoration Professionals To Help With Your Storm Damage

3/3/2020 (Permalink)

SERVPRO logo Contact the fire & water damage restoration professionals today! 248-439-1160

When natural storms or man-made disasters occur and cause flood damage in your Madison Heights or Clawson, MI home, the flooding itself is only the beginning of the catastrophe. Subsequent damage to flooring, walls, personal items and furniture will escalate for weeks or months if left unattended.  Wood will swell and crack; carpets will rot and walls will weaken.  Within hours, mold and mildew can arrive and the air can become dangerous to breathe. 

Seek Professional Restoration

The time to act is critical.  You can’t wait long at all.  As a homeowner, you need to contact a professional cleaning and restoration company, such as SERVPRO of North Oakland County, to manage the situation and bring the risk of further damage to a halt.  However, it's important to understand that not all cleaning and restoration companies are equal.  Only the best are qualified and certified by the IICRC, the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification. The IICRC is THE agency dedicated to ensuring that companies offering disaster cleaning and restoration, like SERVPRO of North Oakland County, are professional, qualified, and reputed to deliver what they promise.

Stop Contamination and Deterioration

While one might think that flood damage restoration is a simple, straightforward process, but that’s hardly the case.  Certainly, throwing away damaged furniture, carpeting, and decor is often a necessary first step, but with the proper professional restoration tools many household furnishings and items can be recovered and restored.  The presence of hidden moisture and the potential for mildew must be detected and re-mediated properly.  Special drying and dehumidifying equipment is utilized to stem mold and mildew proliferation.  Dangerous microbial agents in walls, flooring, and clothing must be rooted out and removed properly.  If caught quickly, the contamination and deterioration may be limited, saving the homeowner a tremendous amount of money.

SERVPRO is an Excellent Option

The process of restoration includes the inspection of literally everything in the house, whether it was directly in contact with the water or not.  Mattresses, drywall, and anything exposed to the same air where the flood water occurred should be inspected.  Even the sewage system needs to be inspected for possible contamination into the living area or water supply and neutralized if necessary.  To perform those necessary tasks safely, professionals utilize hand and eye protection as well as respirator equipment.  It is only with trained, qualified professionals, like SERVPRO of North Oakland County, that proper containment and restoration can be achieved safely and effectively.

Only after the entire process has been completed, is it safe for the homeowner and family members to rebuild and move back in.  Flood damage is a serious, complex catastrophe to be inspected, evaluated, and handled only by experienced professionals.

Locally Owned Company with National Storm Resources

We live and work in this community!!  As a locally owned and operated business, SERVPRO of North Oakland County is close by and ready to respond to your storm or flood damage emergency.  We are proud to be an active member of the Troy and neighboring communities, and want to do our part to make our community the best it can be.

SERVPRO of North Oakland County has the specialized training and expertise to restore your home back to its pre-storm condition.  Call us at today at 248-439-1160.

Storm Damage at your North Oakland County Home

8/7/2019 (Permalink)

Water Ruined This Troy, MI Basement Carpet

After arriving at your flood-damaged Birmingham, Clawson, Madison Heights or Troy area property, our technicians carefully pre-inspect all aspects of the flooded area.  It’s our team's job to begin mitigating damage immediately.  If the water invading your property is clean and safe to enter, we start implementing a specific set of actions right away. 

First and foremost, we inform everyone on the crew and the homeowner if the flood damage in your home presents any immediate dangers. Electrical hazards, falling ceilings, and deteriorated subfloors are all common occurrences after a flood.  Spending a few minutes securing the structure can save lives. 

Next, SERVPRO’s water damage restoration technicians (WRT’s) use a variety of hand-held, truck-mounted, and submersible extraction equipment.  We pump out all standing water found on your property, checking floors, walls, and crawlspaces whenever necessary.  Using the proper equipment for any given situation allows us access to hard-to-reach areas otherwise overlooked. 

SERVPRO technicians use a water meter to determine the extent of water penetration in carpets, floors, walls, and ceilings.  We move and block any furniture found in your home and extract water from all carpeting and hard-surface flooring.  Our team also detaches the carpet from the floor to extract water from both padding and subfloor underneath.  However, in most cases, replacement of padding is necessary. 

SERVPRO examines the back of the carpet for damages, looking for delamination, bad seams, or visible mold.  We check for pre-existing damages and determine whether or not your carpeting remains salvageable.  Technicians treat the floor and back of carpet with an appropriate deodorizer and an anti-microbial before putting the carpet back in place for additional extraction. Once fully extracted, the top of the carpet also receives deodorizer and anti-microbial treatments to the face fibers. 

We pay close attention to carpeting overall, continually searching for any furniture stains caused by the flood. As this type of stain is extremely difficult, if not impossible, to remove after your carpet fully dries.  With extraction complete, your assigned restoration team places dehumidifiers and air-movers strategically around the affected area, which begins the drying process.

Call us at SERVPRO of North Oakland County for full-service flood damage solutions throughout the Birmingham, Clawson, Madison Heights and Troy areas.  We have emergency responder’s available 24-hrs a day, 7-days a week, with access to all of the equipment, tools, and resources needed to tackle any size job. (248) 439-1160.

Do You Know The Categories Of Water??

7/25/2019 (Permalink)

A flooded home. Don't mess with dirty water. Let the water damage restoration professionals help you!

Categories of water define the sanitation of the water that has made its way into your North Oakland County home or business.  There are 3 categories of water and they’re classified by the Institution of Inspection Cleaning & Restoration Certification (IICRC).  You will often hear remediation specialists refer to the 3 categories as: Cat 1, Cat 2, and Cat 3 for short. 

Category 1 - Is the cleanest of the 3 and does not cause serious threat to inhabitants.  Here are some examples of sources for Cat 1 water:  a broken water heater tank, an ice maker water line, and falling rainwater.

Category 2 - Contains considerable contamination and has the potential to cause health concerns if someone were to come in contact with or consume it.  The following are examples of sources containing Cat 2 water:  a fish tank, a washing machine overflowing, or an overflow from a toilet bowl on the room side of the trap with some urine present but no feces.

Category 3 - Is grossly contaminated and can cause rather hazardous health concerns to someone that may come in contact with or consume it.  Examples of this would be:  a sewage back up, or flood water.

If you have water damage in the Berkley, Birmingham, Bloomfield Hills or Troy area, give us a call 248-439-1160.  We are here to help.

Understanding How To Use & Maintaining A Sump Pump

7/23/2019 (Permalink)

Sump pump. Know your home and understand how to utilize your sump pump if you have one.

Sump Pump Maintenance

As a homeowner, you know how much work it is to remove storm water from your home after heavy rain or snowfall.  If interior flooding from ground water or storm runoff is a common problem in your Troy, MI and surrounding community homes, you may want to consider using a sump pump.  This helpful tool not only redirects water away from your house, it can also prevent the costly water damage you deal with and pay for season after season.  Learn more about pump maintenance to determine if this device is right for your home. 

Plug-In the System

Once you get your new pump, you want to start by plugging it in.  If the pump is not attached to a reliable power source it won't do any good when water reaches your house.  Because power outages are often associated with large storms, some homeowners attach a backup power source such as a battery or generator to operate the pump if power fails. 

Clear Blockages

Overtime, your sump pump may require some low-key maintenance.  Small particles and debris may begin to create blockages within the pump that need to be cleaned out.  Neglecting regular inspection for obstructions may result in the following:

  • The pump works harder than necessary
  • Debris may cause permanent damage 
  • Blockages may result in water overflow

Test the System

Regular testing of your pump will help you rest assured that your home is not unprotected.  To test your pump, pour a bucket of water into the floor opening.  Listen for the pump to switch-on and watch for it to quickly and efficiently pull the water out and reduce the water level back to zero.  Slow water extraction may be a sign of pump blockages or debris. 

Swap Out the Backup Battery

Finally, keep an eye on your backup power source.  If you use a battery as your alternative energy connection, charge or replace it every two to three years to make sure it is reliable.  With these simple tips for sump pump operation and maintenance, you may be able to save the time and money on dealing with home storm damage.

Don't Do These Things After A Flood

7/18/2019 (Permalink)

A Flooded Road Storms and flood water can be extremely dangerous. Be careful and stay vigilant.

It’s one of many homeowners’ worst nightmares: a large storm or local disaster has flooded your neighborhood in Troy, Birmingham, Bloomfield Hills and other neighboring communities.  Many who experience flooding for the first time are unprepared and uninformed, not knowing what to do after floodwater has covered the streets or entered their home. To help you prepare, whether you’re facing a flooded home now or foresee its possibility in the future, here are three things NOT to do after a flood.

1. Remain in your home.  For safety reasons, if water has entered your home, it’s important to leave and not reenter until the flooding has subsided.  In a flood’s immediate aftermath, the risk of rising water is still imminent due to the possibility of more rain.  Please find refuge outside the flood area, whether it be in a hotel, a friend or other family member’s home or a public shelter.

2. Touch the water.  Flood water can be contaminated with any number of bacteria, sewage and/or chemicals that can be harmful to your skin and health.  It’s also imperative to avoid standing water to minimize the risk of electric shock from electrical lines and equipment touching the water.  If you must enter or be around the water for any reason, protective clothing such as rubber boots should be worn.

3. Fixing things yourself.  Repairing flood damaged items in a home can require a large number of construction materials, professional knowledge and skill to ensure the damaged items are fully repaired and any mold is removed.  Instead of trying to take on the job all by yourself, it’s best to save time and additional headaches by contacting a water damage repair and restoration company.

For any homeowner, flood water is most definitely an unwelcome sight.  Knowing what to do, or not do, in this type of disaster is imperative to keep you and your family safe and to begin the restoration process successfully.

Winter Headaches!!

12/28/2018 (Permalink)

Winter weather brings more than just slippery roads and sidewalks to shovel. In Michigan where temperatures sink below freezing level, frozen pipes and ice dams can create a major disaster for your home or business.  

FROZEN PIPES

Frozen pipes are often exposed to cold weather, whether they are outside your home or in cold areas such as basements, attics, garages, or kitchen/bathroom cabinets. A frozen pipe bursts typically where the ice blockage is located inside the pipe however the rupture is caused by the backflow pressure between the water source and the blockage. A burst pipe can cause considerable damage to your property if not addressed quickly. To help prevent pipes from freezing, here are a few steps you can take, according to The American Red Cross:

  • Completely drain water from swimming pool and sprinkler lines, as well as outside hoses.
  • Open kitchen/bathroom cabinets to allow warm air to circulate around plumbing.
  • When the weather is extremely cold, let water drip from faucets that may come from exposed pipes.
  • Keep your heat set to the same temperature both day and night.

ICE DAMS

Ice dams can be a major problem during the winter. Ice build-up on the eaves of your roof often times will prevent melting snow to flow off the roof or run into the gutter system. The water then is trapped under the ice which can backflow under the shingles and into the structures interior causing major water damage. Ice dams can also cause gutters and shingles to move or fall. Icicles can be an initial sign of an ice dam, according to Travelers.com. To spot ice dams inside, “check for water stains or moisture in your attic or along the ceiling of exterior walls of your house. Water stains or moisture may be an indication that an ice dam has formed and water has penetrated the roof membrane.” Removing an ice dam as soon as it is found is vital to helping prevent damage to your property and can be done using heated cables, a roof shovel, or calcium chloride ice melter. If winter weather causes water damage to you or your insured’s
property, SERVPRO of North Oakland County is only a call away, 24/7, ready to restore to preloss condition. 248-439-1160

Are You Ready for Winter Weather??

12/28/2018 (Permalink)

The Cold Weather is here.  Are you prepared? Heavy rain and freezing temperatures, damaging winds, sleet and snow can cause serious and costly property damage to your home or business if you are not ready. You can't control the weather however you can make provisions and be prepared to help take the sting out of winter weather.

Protect your property by taking these precautions before colder weather hits to help prevent costly damages from old man winter. 

  • Inspect tree limbs and branches around your property. Strong winds, heavy rain, snow and ice can cause branches to fall, which could potentially lead to damages to the structure and even cause personal injuries.
  • Inspect roofs, water pipes, and gutters to ensure they are in proper working order. Direct gutter downspouts away from your structure. Clear all debris from gutters. Leaves, pine needles and other obstructions can cause a damming effect, which can lead to roof damage and interior water problems.
  • Inspect walkways and parking lots for proper drainage to alleviate potential flood hazards.
  • Inspect all handrails, stairwells, and entryways to prevent potential slippery or hazardous areas. Install mats or non-slip surfaces. Post caution signs where water could be present.
  • When temperatures dip below freezing, allow faucets to drip to help prevent pipes from freezing. Leaving cabinet doors open allows warm air to circulate around pipes located underneath cabinets helping to prevent freezing. If the structure has outdoor faucets, consider shutting water 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.
  • Ask SERVPRO® of North Oakland County about completing an Emergency READY Profile® (ERP) for your business. The ERP is a no-cost assessment of your facility and provides you with a plan to get back in business fast following a disaster.

When winter weather strikes, call SERVPRO® of North Oakland County to strike back. 248-439-1160

How To Check For Roof Damage After A Storm

7/30/2018 (Permalink)

A leaky ceiling. Storms can cause roof damage pretty easily. Call SERVPRO today after you've experienced any damage to your home.

After a major storm, it's a good idea to inspect your property for damage. Your home's main line of defense is your roof, and it takes a beating. Since it's hard to see your roof, be sure to pay special attention to things like dings in your gutters or tears in your window screens which indicate hail damage. Even from the ground, you may see missing tiles or other signs of roof damage, but most leaks don't represent a need for whole roof replacement. Usually, the leak is coming from something requiring only minor roof repair. Find the source of the leak, stop it and clean the water damage.

Find the Leak Source

During storms, wind damage lets the rain into your roof. From the inside of your home, look for stains that indicate the source of a leak and the area that needs roof repair. You may see water stains on your ceiling or coming down a wall. When you see that, get your flashlight and head to the attic to look for the source of the leak in that area. Here are five common sources for a roof leak:

1. Vents and fans
2. Chimneys
3. Window dormers
4. Vent pipes
5. Unsecured nails and nail holes

Fix Water Damage

To complete your roof repair, start looking for materials that have been damaged by water. Check for discolorations and rotting wood, as well as wet drywall and insulation. If you find mold, you will need to be very careful not to spread the problem during cleanup. A mold remediation professional can help by creating a containment area while working on the water and mold damage. If you haven't found mold, be sure to start drying any wet materials right away. Mold can begin growing on wet damaged materials in as little as 48 hours. Complete drying is critical to preventing mold, and it may take longer than you realize, especially in a humid attic space. Specialists have monitoring equipment that they use to ensure materials are completely dry. For more information, visit: http://www.SERVPROnorthoaklandcounty.com/

What to do if your house gets struck by lightning

7/10/2018 (Permalink)

Lightning strike Lightning strikes can cause a devastating fire in your home. If you experience storm and lightning damage... contact SERVPRO as soon as possible!

What to Do If Your House Gets Struck by Lightning

by Shawn Hedrick

What happens when lightning strikes a house?

If your home ever gets struck by lightning, you will hear a very loud, powerful boom that might shake your entire house. Many homes are built to withstand lightning strikes without succumbing to major damage. While staying inside your home, away from doors and windows, is the safest place to be during a storm, a couple of dangers exist inside the home when lightning is involved, regardless of whether you have lightning protection in place.

  1. Power Surges: When lightning strikes a house, the electricity often surges through a home’s wiring or plumbing system, searching for the quickest possible route to the ground. Make sure to unplug any electronics (especially valuable ones like TVs or computers), or they could be destroyed. Avoid running water during a lightning storm. You could get electrocuted if you are touching or standing near water or any electronics that are plugged into walls.
  2. Fire: When lightning shoots through a home, there’s a risk for fire. The most common place for a fire to ignite is in the attic, when a lightning bolt comes through the roof or top of the house. However, the heat from the electricity of a lightning bolt that runs through the walls inside your plumbing or wiring could start a fire as well. You may notice it immediately, or it may burn slowly inside the walls without your realizing it for some time.

What to do if your house gets struck by lightning?

    1. First, make sure everyone is okay. If you see fire or smell smoke, evacuate your home immediately.
    2. Call 911, and tell them your home was struck by lightning. Do this regardless of whether or not you detect a fire hazard.
    3. The fire department will come out to your property and assess the area for damage, including using thermal imaging cameras to search inside walls for heat that could or already has started a fire.
    4. Once your home is assessed and found to be safe, you will be able to return inside.
    5. Call your insurance company and explain what has happened.
  • If there is damage to your home call us at SERVPRO of North Oakland County. We are always here to help – 24/7.  Our experts are standing by -  248.439.1160