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SPRING FLOODING: ARE YOU READY?
Rossiter Elementary School floods in May of 2018.
As Montana's record breaking winter comes to an end, many communities will face the risk of spring flooding. Between a heavy snow pack, rapid snow melt and spring rain, these conditions will only increase the threat of your building being damaged by flood waters. By becoming educated and taking steps to protect your home or business, you can be more prepared for flooding.
- Create and practice a flood evacuation plan
- Build an emergency kit
- Move important papers and valuables to a safe, dry location
-Strengthen and secure your building-Sand bags work well
- review your insurance coverage
In the unfortunate event your home or business does suffer from a flood call SERVPRO of Helena & Great Falls to check for damage, remove any wet contents to prevent molding, and begin planning for repairs.
Warmer weather is approaching quickly. Now is the time to begin preparing for spring floods.
SERVPRO Emergency Ready Program
Call SERVPRO of Helena & Great Falls today so we can provide your business with an Emergency Ready Profile.
The SERVPRO Emergency READY Profile(ERP) will help ensure you and your businesses are “Ready for whatever happens.”
In the event of an emergency, the SERVPRO® Emergency READY Profile can help minimize business interruption by having an immediate plan of action in place for your facility. The ERP is a comprehensive document containing critical information about your business, including: Emergency Contact Information, Shut-off Valve Locations and Priority Areas. The ERP is also accessible online using your computer or tablet; download SERVPRO’s free Ready Plan app to access this information at any time using your smart phone or tablet.
You can establish SERVPRO of Helena & Great Falls as your disaster mitigation and restoration provider, giving you access to over 45 years experience and a System of more than 1,700 Franchises strong. Knowing what to do and who to call in advance is key to quick response and timely mitigation. Having a plan in place may help minimize the amount of time your business is inactive and get you back in the building following a disaster.
Preparation is the key to making it through any size disaster, whether it is 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. No one ever plans on a disaster, but now, you can plan for it.
The ERP is a no cost assessment; all it requires is a little time, making it a great value that could save a lot of time in the future. Call us, SERVPRO® of Helena & Great Falls, to establish your Emergency READY Profile.
Spring Flooding Prevention
Spring is known for its unpredictable weather. The combination of heavy rains and rapid snow thaw from the mountains can result in severe home flooding. Here are vital tips to prepare your home for spring thaw and prevent water damage:
- Remove snow around your house with a shovel so that thawed snow will drain away from your home. Also, remove obstructions or debris that could prevent water from being carried away from your house.
- Check your home’s drainage. Ensure that flood drains outside your house are not obstructed by debris. Roof drains should be open and flow freely.
- Clear gutters of all ice, snow and any possible blockages.
- Have your roof inspected to ensure that it is prepared for storms and to keep water out of your house.
- Elevate items in the basement. Relocate sensitive items, such as documents or electronics to the upper levels of your home.
- Install a sump pump in the basement. Sump pumps protect your basement from flooding by removing excess water around your home’s foundation, transporting it safely outside. If you already have a sump pump, make sure it is clean and the intake valve is clear. Test the sump pump to ensure it’s in proper condition.
- Purchase flood insurance ahead of time. Most homeowners’ policies do not include flood damage so it’s important to purchase this protection separately. However, make the call today as flood insurance becomes effective 30 days after the date of purchase.
- If you do run into flood water entering your home call SERVPRO OF HELENA & GREAT FALLS. 406-458-6008.
Preventing Frozen Pipes
If you are experiencing frozen pipes in the upcoming winter call SERVPRO at (406) 458-6008
Preventing Frozen Pipes
Why Pipe Freezing is a Problem
Water has a unique property in that it expands as it freezes. This expansion puts tremendous pressure on whatever is containing it, including metal or plastic pipes. No matter the "strength" of a container, expanding water can cause pipes to break. Pipes that freeze most frequently are those that are exposed to severe cold, like outdoor hose bibs, swimming pool supply lines, water sprinkler lines, and water supply pipes in unheated interior areas like basements and crawl spaces, attics, garages, or kitchen cabinets. Pipes that run against exterior walls that have little or no insulation are also subject to freezing.
If your pipes do freeze, STAY CALM AND CALL SERVPRO. We can make it "Like it never even happened.®"
During Cold Weather, Take Preventative Action
- 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.
To Thaw Frozen Pipes
- 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.
- Consider relocating exposed pipes to provide increased protection from freezing.
- Pipes can be relocated by a professional if the home is remodeled.
- Add insulation to attics, basements and crawl spaces. Insulation will maintain higher temperatures in these areas.
- Call SERVPRO of Helena & Great Falls at (406)458-6008.