Recent Posts

How to Protect Pipes From Freezing

10/21/2019 (Permalink)

Before the onset of cold weather, protect your pipes from freezing by following these recommendations:

  • Drain water from swimming pool and water sprinkler supply lines following manufacturer's or installer's directions. Do not put antifreeze in these lines unless directed. Antifreeze is environmentally harmful, and is dangerous to humans, pets, wildlife, and landscaping.
  • Remove, drain, and store hoses used outdoors. Close inside valves supplying outdoor hose bibs. Open the outside hose bibs to allow water to drain. Keep the outside valve open so that any water remaining in the pipe can expand without causing the pipe to break.
  • Add insulation to attics, basements and crawl spaces. Insulation will maintain higher temperatures in these areas.
  • Check around the home for other areas where water supply lines are located in unheated areas. Look in the garage, and under kitchen and bathroom cabinets. Both hot and cold water pipes in these areas should be insulated.
  • Consider installing specific products made to insulate water pipes like a "pipe sleeve" or installing UL-listed "heat tape," "heat cable," or similar materials on exposed water pipes. Newspaper can provide some degree of insulation and protection to exposed pipes – even ¼” of newspaper can provide significant protection in areas that usually do not have frequent or prolonged temperatures below freezing.
  • Consider relocating exposed pipes to provide increased protection from freezing.

How to Thaw Frozen Pipes

10/21/2019 (Permalink)

  • If you turn on a faucet and only a trickle comes out, suspect a frozen pipe. Likely places for frozen pipes include against exterior walls or where your water service enters your home through the foundation.
  • Keep the faucet open. As you treat the frozen pipe and the frozen area begins to melt, water will begin to flow through the frozen area. Running water through the pipe will help melt ice in the pipe.
  • Apply heat to the section of pipe using an electric heating pad wrapped around the pipe, an electric hair dryer, a portable space heater (kept away from flammable materials), or by wrapping pipes with towels soaked in hot water. Do not use a blowtorch, kerosene or propane heater, charcoal stove, or other open flame device.
  • Apply heat until full water pressure is restored. If you are unable to locate the frozen area, if the frozen area is not accessible, or if you can not thaw the pipe, call a licensed plumber.
  • Check all other faucets in your home to find out if you have additional frozen pipes. If one pipe freezes, others may freeze, too.

How to Prevent Frozen Pipes

10/18/2019 (Permalink)

  • Keep garage doors closed if there are water supply lines in the garage.
  • Open kitchen and bathroom cabinet doors to allow warmer air to circulate around the plumbing. Be sure to move any harmful cleaners and household chemicals up out of the reach of children.
  • When the weather is very cold outside, let the cold water drip from the faucet served by exposed pipes. Running water through the pipe - even at a trickle - helps prevent pipes from freezing.
  • Keep the thermostat set to the same temperature both during the day and at night. By temporarily suspending the use of lower nighttime temperatures, you may incur a higher heating bill, but you can prevent a much more costly repair job if pipes freeze and burst.
  • If you will be going away during cold weather, leave the heat on in your home, set to a temperature no lower than 55° F.

Preventing & Thawing Frozen Pipes http://fw.to/4evuwyC

Winter Storm Terminology

10/17/2019 (Permalink)

Take immediate precautions if you hear these words on the news: 

Winter Storm WARNING: Life-threatening, severe winter conditions have begun or will begin within 24 hours. 

Blizzard WARNING: Sustained winds or frequent gusts of 35 miles per hour or greater, plus considerable falling or blowing snow reducing visibility to less than a quarter mile, expected to prevail for three hours or longer.

More winter storm words to listen for:

  • WIND CHILL Temperature: How cold people and animals feel when outside. As wind increases, heat is carried away from your body at a faster rate, driving down your body temperature and making you feel much colder. The wind chill temperature is not the actual temperature but rather how wind and cold feel on exposed skin.
  • Winter Storm OUTLOOK: Winter storm conditions possible in the next two to five days. Stay tuned to local media for updates.
  • Winter Storm WATCH: Winter storm conditions possible within the next 36 to 48 hours. Review your winter storm plans and stay informed about weather conditions.
  • Winter Weather ADVISORY: Winter weather conditions expected to cause significant inconveniences and may be hazardous but not life-threatening if you are cautious.

Winter Storm Preparedness http://fw.to/WJPjQt

What Do You Need In A Survival Kit?

10/17/2019 (Permalink)

What Do You Need In A Survival Kit?

At a minimum, you should have the basic supplies listed below:
  1. Water: one gallon per person, per day (3-day supply for evacuation, 2-week supply for home)
  2. Food: non-perishable, easy-to-prepare items (3-day supply for evacuation, 2-week supply for home)
  3. Flashlight 
  4. Battery-powered or hand-crank radio (NOAA Weather Radio, if possible)
  5. Extra batteries (Similar item available in the Red Cross Store)
  6. Deluxe family first aid kit
  7. Medications (7-day supply) and medical items
  8. Multi-purpose tool
  9. Sanitation and personal hygiene items
  10. Copies of personal documents (medication list and pertinent medical information, proof of address, deed/lease to home, passports, birth certificates, insurance policies)
  11. Cell phone with chargers (Similar item available in the Red Cross Store)
  12. Family and emergency contact information
  13. Extra cash
  14. Emergency blanket
  15. Map(s) of the area

Consider the needs of all family members and add supplies to your kit:

  • Medical supplies (hearing aids with extra batteries, glasses, contact lenses, syringes, etc)
  • Baby supplies (bottles, formula, baby food, diapers)
  • Games and activities for children
  • Pet supplies (collar, leash, ID, food, carrier, bowl)
  • Two-way radios
  • Extra set of car keys and house keys
  • Manual can opener

Additional supplies to keep at home or in your survival kit based on the types of disasters common to your area:

  • Whistle
  • N95 or surgical masks
  • Matches
  • Rain gear
  • Towels
  • Work gloves
  • Tools/supplies for securing your home
  • Extra clothing, hat and sturdy shoes
  • Plastic sheeting
  • Duct tape
  • Scissors
  • Household liquid bleach
  • Entertainment items
  • Blankets or sleeping bags

Survival Kit Supplies http://fw.to/ESYA2jP

SERVPRO Emergency Ready Profile

11/20/2018 (Permalink)

It is estimated that up to 50% of businesses that close due to a disaster, such as fire and flood never reopen!  Of the businesses that survive, the overwhelming majority of them had a preparedness plan in place.

Are you “Ready for whatever happens?”

Preparation is a key component for making it through any size disaster, whether it’s a small water leak, a large fire, or an area flood.  The best time to plan for such events is not when the event happens, but well before it happens.

The SERVPRO® Emergency READY Profile serves as a quick reference of important building and contact information or can be an ideal supplement to any well-designed emergency preparedness or existing contingency program.  Rather than simply reacting to disaster situations, most prefer proactive measures to establish a relationship with a restoration services company. 

By working with SERVPRO® of Pike / NE Monroe Counties to develop your personalized Emergency READY Profile your business will receive the benefit of over 40 years of experience in reducing the impact of any natural or man-made disaster.  SERVPRO® is a leader in water and fire damage response and can help you quickly get your property back in working order.

Call Colby D'Anieri at 570-424-2290 Today for a No Cost Assessment
of Your Facility!

Myths and Facts About Sprinkler Systems (Part 1)

11/19/2018 (Permalink)

Sprinkler head in a commercial building

Myth: “Water damage from a sprinkler system will be more extensive than fire damage.”

Fact: Water damage from a building sprinkler system will be much less severe than the damage caused by water from firefighting hose lines or smoke and fire damage if the fire is allowed to spread. Quick response sprinklers release 8-24 gallons of water per minute compared to 80-125 gallons per minute discharged by a fire hose.

Myth: “When a fire occurs, every sprinkler head goes off.”

Fact: Sprinkler heads are individually activated by fire temperatures in excess of 155°F. Residential fires are usually controlled with one sprinkler head. 90% of all fires are controlled with six or fewer heads and a study conducted during 80 years of automatic sprinkler use found that 82% of the fires that have occurred were controlled by two or fewer sprinkler heads.

Source:  American Fire Sprinkler Association

Myths and Facts About Sprinkler Systems (Part 2)

11/19/2018 (Permalink)

Sprinkler head in a commercial building

Myth: “A smoke detector provides enough protection.”

Fact: Smoke detectors save lives by providing an early warning to a smoke or fire incident, but can do nothing to extinguish a growing fire or protect those physically unable to escape on their own, such as the elderly or small children. Too often, battery operated smoke detectors fail to function because the batteries are dead or have been removed. As the percent of homes in America that were “protected” with smoke detectors increased from zero to more than 70%, the number of fire deaths in homes did not significantly decrease.

Myth: “Sprinklers are designed to protect property, but are not effective for saving lives.”

Fact: Sprinklers provide a high level of safety. Statistics reveal that there has never been any multiple losses of life in a fully sprinklered building. Property losses are 85% less in residences with fire sprinklers compared to those without sprinklers. The combination of automatic sprinklers and early warning systems in all buildings could reduce overall injuries, loss of life and property damage by at least 50%.

Source:  American Fire Sprinkler Association

Blizzard Tips

11/19/2018 (Permalink)

Blizzard of 2015

A blizzard is a severe snow storm with winds in excess of 35 mph and visibility of less than a 1/4 mile for more than 3 hours.

Traveling by car or foot is highly discouraged during blizzard conditions. It increases the chance of hypothermia, accident and death.

If you must travel by car during a blizzard, it is vital to have an emergency aid kit (water, jumper cables, road flares, tow rope, non-perishable snacks) in case your car breaks down, you get into an accident, or become stuck in the snow.

To avoid hypothermia if caught outdoors during a blizzard, stay hydrated and nourished. Keep blood flowing by moving around. Also build a snow cave to block winds, which reduce your body temperature. And don't eat snow, it will make you colder! While keeping yourself safe, also think about the well-being of your animals by creating an emergency plan for your pets!

Traveling by car or foot is highly discouraged during blizzard conditions. It increases the chance of hypothermia, accident and death.

When a blizzard is in the forecast, you may receive a “Winter Storm Watch," which means there is a possibility of a storm taking effect. You could also receive a “Winter Storm Warning," which means a storm is on the way or already taking place.

As soon as you receive a storm warning, get prepared. You could lose electricity (this includes hot water and heat), so stock up on non-perishable foods, blankets, flashlights, extra batteries, and candles beforehand.

How to Spot Roof Damage

11/19/2018 (Permalink)

Damaged Shingles

Thunderstorms, tornadoes, hailstorms and hurricanes can tear shingles from your roof and give your roof a beating with tree branches. Follow these steps to check for storm damage to your roof:

• Inspect your attic for leaks or water damage. Also, if any water stains appear on your ceiling or walls, you likely need repairs or a roof replacement.

• Look for signs of storm damage from the ground. Check for missing shingles or missing pieces of metal fascia, including any metal pieces displaced from around your chimney. Also, assess the condition of exhaust pipes, valleys, outer edges or angles where the roof meets the walls.

• Obviously, you’ll notice if a tree fell on your roof. If so, stay out of your home until a professional can determine whether any structural damage occurred. Consider hiring a general contractor or roofer with a general contractor’s license if your home suffered structural damage, as you’ll need more than roof repairs.

• If the storm produced hail, check for roof damage, as well as siding damage. Hail damage commonly comes in the forms of dimples, made by smaller chunks of hail that pound the outer layer of shingles.

• Stay safe — avoid going on the roof to check for damage yourself and instead contact a professional roofer.

Source: Angie's List