Recent Water Damage Posts

Frozen Pipes

2/8/2019 (Permalink)

Water Damage Frozen Pipes Busted pipes can cause considerable damage to your Helena or Great Falls property.

The temperatures here in Montana have been dropping and the winter weather is here.  When the temperatures go below freezing level, your property is at risk for frozen pipes, which can create a major disaster in your home or business.

Be Prepared

  • Know where your water shut off is located, in case of a frozen water pipe burst.
  • Insulate exposed pipes in your home or business, especially if they are in unheated rooms.
  • Open bathroom and kitchen cabinet doors during cold spells to allow warmer air to circulate around the plumbing.
  • During extremely cold weather, keep a slow trickle of water flowing through faucets. Running water is less likely to freeze.
  • Consider shutting off outdoor faucets and open the outdoor faucet to help ensure it completely drains and the inner valve is shut off.
  • Keep your heat set to the same temperature both day and night.
  • If you plan on being away from your property for an extended period of time, leave the heat on and set the thermostat to at least 55°F.

Discovered Frozen Pipe

  • First sign of freezing is reduced water flow from a faucet.
  • Keep the faucet open when treating frozen pipes.
  • Apply heat to the frozen sections using a heating pad, hair drier, or another safe heat source. Do not use an open flame device.
  • Check additional pipes and faucets for freezing.

When a Pipe Bursts

  • Shut off the water at the main valve.
  • Call your local restoration professionals, SERVPRO® of Helena & Great Falls.

A burst pipe can cause considerable damage to your property if not addressed quickly. If winter weather causes water damage to your home or business, call SERVPRO® of Helena & Great Falls. We are available 24/7 in Cascade county, Lewis & Clark county and surrounding areas.  

Vacation Water Damage Preparedness

11/26/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage Vacation Water Damage Preparedness Call us at SERVPRO of Helena & Great Falls if you ever come home to damage in your house. 406-458-6008

If you ever come home from vacation to find your home flooded, call us immediately. (406) 458-6008.

With the holiday season upon us, many folks are making travel plans and preparing to visit friends and family around the country.

While you are away on vacation, the last thing you want to worry about is water damage to your home. Unfortunately, a water loss can strike at any time, whether or not you are present for it. Here are a few tips you can use to minimize the potential of water damage to your home whilst away.  

Quick pre-departure home inspection

After you have bought your plane tickets and packed your luggage, make sure to do a quick inspection around your home for potential problematic areas. Have a look at the pipes under your sinks, look for any issues with your water heater or furnace, inspect the supply lines that connect your major appliances and check the gutters and roof for any leaks, blockages or abnormalities.

This quick step can greatly reduce the potential for damage while you are away and give you peace of mind in the process.

Turn off the water main

An easy way to insure that you have no water related issues while you are away is to simply turn the water main off. It may be days before someone discovers standing water in their home, and turning off the water main on the way out the door will eliminate the potential to find unwanted surprises when they return.

Hire a house sitter

It’s always a good idea to have a trusted friend, family member or neighbor keep an eye on your home while you are away. Even better if they can stop in once or twice a day to make sure everything is in order. Make sure that whoever you choose receives adequate instructions and emergency contact information.

Nobody wants to return to their home after a fun vacation to find water damage, but sometimes, despite best efforts, they can still happen.

If you do return from your vacation to find water damage in your home, stay calm and contact a reputable water restoration company such as SERVPRO of Helena & Great Falls immediately. The longer you wait, the more there is a chance for secondary damage.  

(406) 458-6008

Water Damage & Homeowners Insurance

8/3/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage Water Damage & Homeowners Insurance Are you covered in your insurance policy.

A water loss is a very common calamity and a fact of life for many homeowners. Insurance policies can give you peace of mind, but many times, homeowners may not be aware of what is and what is NOT covered in their policy until it’s too late. We review seven common potential water related disaster scenarios below. You may want to update your policy accordingly after reviewing this article.

Broken pipe due to freezing

During the winter months, temperatures can reach extremes that can freeze the water in your pipes and cause them to burst. Most home owner’s policies cover this type of damage unless it was caused by negligence. An example of this would be if you left your home unoccupied and without heat.

Swimming pool leak that results in damage to your basement and lawn

Generally speaking, swimming pool leaks will not be covered in your homeowner’s policy unless the leak was the result of a falling tree. Damage to your basement and personal belongings is usually covered but damage to your lawn is generally not.

Appliance failure

Water damage from a failing appliance, such as an overflowing washing machine or broken toilet is covered if the issue is accidental and not the result of negligence. If you have failed to maintain your appliances and supply hoses, and this results in damage, it will not be covered.

Sewage back up

Although sewage backups are not covered by most standard home owner policies, additional endorsements may be added to the policy for this purpose. If the sewage back up was caused at a city level, you should contact the appropriate authorities in your municipality to discuss your options.

Natural disasters and storms

Damage incurred from floods are not covered in standard homeowner insurance policies. This includes intruding water from overflowing rivers, lakes or seawater, in addition to storms. If you require protection from this type of damage, you will need to get it separately in addition to your standard policy. Check with you insurance agent to find out your options.

Water seepage from ground water beneath your basement

This type of damage is considered a maintenance issue and is not covered in standard homeowner’s insurance policies.

Leakage through roof during or after a rainstorm

If your roof has not been properly maintained, this type of damage will not be covered. However, damage to your belongings may be covered, depending on the type of insurance policy you have. It is always a good idea to perform preventative maintenance to your home, especially if you live in an area with high precipitation or snow such as Helena or Great Falls area in general.

A lot of homeowners are unsure how to handle mold growth in their home as it pertains to their insurance policy. It is good to educate yourself on this type of claim prior to it occurring.

If you experience a flood in your home or discover that you have a mold issue, call SERVPRO of Helena & Great Falls 406-458-6008 immediately to get the remediation process underway as soon as possible. We deal with insurance companies on a daily basis and can help you navigate your claim. We are always here to help.

Water Restoration Steps

7/30/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage Water Restoration Steps Water damage in your home can do extensive damage quickly. Call SERVPRO of Helena & Great Falls to help keep the damage to a minimum.

The Steps of Water Restoration

In the event of a water related disaster, SERVPRO of Helena & Great Falls is your first line of defense. Call us today. 406-458-6008.

In the event of a water related disaster in your Great Falls home, your FIRST line of defense is to call a reputable water restoration company such as SERVPRO of Helena & Great Falls. Most of the damage will occur in the first 48 hours. The longer water has a chance to sit, the more expensive the repairs will be.

Upon arrival, SERVPRO of Helena & Great Falls will likely perform a variation of the following steps:

  • Assessment of the damage

This step consists of a walk though of the area in question. Information and photos will be gathered. The surrounding area will also be inspected. Many times, water can seep into neighboring regions and can sometimes go undetected without the aid of a trained water restoration professional.

  • Water Removal

SERVPRO of Helena & Great Falls will then begin to remove the standing water. This process will involve vacuums and extraction pumps. This step is a race against time, as the longer the water sits, the more chance for secondary damage.

  • Drying

Once all of the standing water has been removed, the drying process can begin. This stage will utilize strategically placed industrial air movers and dehumidifiers. SERVPRO utilizes scientifically proven methods and state of the art equipment to decrease the dry time. Every job is different and will require its own “dry plan”.

  • Restoration

This step includes the removal of unsalvageable materials such as damaged carpets, drywall and other waterlogged building materials. This step will reveal how much of the area was able to be restored to a preloss condition.

Each water restoration job comes with its own unique set of challenges, and is assessed on a case by case basis. This list is intended to merely explain the general procedures of water restoration. Our blog contains a wealth of information on the subject of water, fire and mold restoration. If you are looking for a reputable and dependable disaster restoration company, SERVPRO of Helena & Great Falls is an industry leader and we take pride in every job we perform. Call us today to set up an assessment. 406-458-6008

Why Pipes Burst

12/13/2017 (Permalink)

Water Damage Why Pipes Burst Call us at SERVPRO of Helena & Great Falls if you have damage due to frozen pipes.

When water freezes, it expands. That's why a can of soda explodes if it's put into a freezer to chill quickly and forgotten. When water freezes in a pipe, it also expands the same way. If it expands enough, the pipe bursts, water escapes and serious damage results.

Surprisingly, ice forming in a pipe does not typically cause a break where the ice blockage occurs. It's not the radial expansion of ice against the wall of the pipe that causes the break. Rather, following a complete ice blockage in a pipe, continued freezing and expansion inside the pipe causes water pressure to increase downstream. Between the ice blockage and a closed faucet at the end. It's this increase in water pressure that leads to pipe failure. Usually the pipe bursts where little or no ice has formed. Upstream from the ice blockage the water can always retreat back towards its source, so there is no pressure build-up to cause a break. Water has to freeze for ice blockages to occur. Pipes that are adequately protected along their entire length by placement within the building's insulation, insulation on the pipe itself, or heating, are safe.

Call SERVPRO of Helena & Great Falls if you experience a broken pipe in your Helena or Great Falls home (406) 458-6008.

Water Damage Restoration in Helena & Great Falls Homes

11/13/2017 (Permalink)

Water Damage Water Damage Restoration in Helena & Great Falls Homes Water can do a lot of damage to a home that is not visible to the eye. Let SERVPRO of Helena & Great Falls help restore your home. 406-458-6008

Water Damage Restoration

Many Helena & Great Falls homeowners who find damaged areas in their residence often try to patch the area up with store-bought repair materials. These items are typically only for temporary repairs, not permanent ones. Water can damage a home in various ways, each requiring its own solution.

When your Helena or Great Falls home needs water damage restoration, SERVPRO can assist you with the needed work. Our tools, machinery, and equipment help us in providing professional services for both large and small jobs. Because water damage spreads and grows larger, small affected areas should receive timely repair work. Prevention always requires less work and expense than what larger jobs need. Acting quickly instead of waiting for water damage to become more noticeable or problematic costs homeowners thousands extra.

Experts in restoration work can save you both time and money by doing the repairs the correct way, the first time. This eliminates the need for temporary materials, which restoration professionals need to remove before performing more permanent repairs.

SERVPRO technicians restore homes by removing sections full of water damage and then replacing the needed materials. Cleaning away the grime and grit that comes along with deterioration can revitalize some materials enough that replacement becomes unnecessary. Removing some materials leads to the discovery of additional damage on the wooden beams that make up the framework of a home.

Replacing structural supports with like materials restores the strength of the home's interior structure. Many homeowners experience an absence of creaking after this type of restoration. Window frames and doors become a bit more square once this happens, also, making them easier to open and close.

When water damage affects windows and doorways, re-framing them can solve the problem. Cabinets can also become water-damaged and require repair work. Floors, walls, ceilings, and even your belongings can sustain damage from exposure to water. We can restore all of these to like-new condition for you.

Water, while necessary for life, can quickly and easily create damaged areas in any home. Our experts also have the skills needed to locate the water coming into your home, and then eliminating the water's source, protecting your home from future water damage. Call SERVPRO of Helena & Great Falls at (406) 458-6008 for our round-the-clock services.

Preparing your Great Falls home for winter

9/25/2017 (Permalink)

Water Damage Preparing your Great Falls home for winter If you find yourself with Frozen pipes call SERVPRO.

Before winter arrives

The three central causes of frozen pipes are quick drops in temperature, poor insulation, and thermostats set too low. You can prepare your home during the warmer months.

  • Insulate pipes in your home's crawl spaces and attic, even if you live in a climate where freezing is uncommon. Exposed pipes are most susceptible to freezing. Remember, the more insulation you use, the better protected your pipes will be.
  • Heat tape or thermostatically controlled heat cables can be used to wrap pipes. Be sure to use products approved by an independent testing organization, and only for the use intended (exterior or interior). Closely follow all manufacturers' installation and operation instructions.
  • Seal leaks that allow cold air inside near where pipes are located. Look for air leaks around electrical wiring, dryer vents, and pipes, and use caulk or insulation to keep the cold out. With severe cold, even a tiny opening can let in enough cold air to cause a pipe to freeze.
  • Before winter hits, disconnect garden hoses and, if possible, use an indoor valve to shut off and drain water from pipes leading to outside faucets. This reduces the chance of freezing in the short span of pipe just inside the house.

If your Great Falls or Helena area home does end up with frozen pipes call SERVPRO of Helena & Great Falls. 

Water damage? Get cleanup from SERVPRO of Helena & Great Falls

8/30/2017 (Permalink)

Water Damage Water damage? Get cleanup from SERVPRO of Helena & Great Falls Let SERVPRO of Helena & Great Falls help you when water has taken over your home. Call 406-458-6008 today.

Damage Caused by Water, from Busted Pipes or Storms, Get Cleanup from SERVPRO

There are a variety of websites showing a simple 10-step do-it-yourself fix for protecting your structure after a flood. However, they often promote their products that fail to meet EPA specifications and even forgo mentioning other important factors involved in the process.

It is hard to receive quality results while attempting to repair flood damage in your home alone, without proper training, years of experience, and access to vital resources. Using a variety of home products and household tools does not provide you with the services you deserve.  

Here is a small look at what technicians face when providing services involved in your home’s restoration process. First, you should never enter a building deemed unsafe, always wait for a professional to tell you everything is okay. Next, protect yourself; it takes protective gear for everyone who wants to enter. Before you re-enter your property, inspect it for known hazards. You might cause significant damage, start a fire, or end up in the hospital if you fail to get it right. The best thing you can do is check about flood insurance coverage.

After checking everything, all contents including furniture, personal belongings, and any object not directly connected to the structure of your home needs moved to a safe, dry location. Be careful and avoid any additional damages, each of these items could be restorable. SERVPRO does all of this for you. This is an extreme scenario of what you can face after a flooding from a ruptured plumbing line, appliance, or storm related reason.

You need to remove mud and any other debris from carpeting and flooring. Rip every section of carpeting and any other flooring out of your home. Once done, an EPA-registered disinfectant, sanitizer, and virucide should get applied everywhere. The entire process includes cutting drywall on every wall down, at least 2-feet above the highest water line to allow for proper disinfection and drying. Leaving exposed wiring, pipes, and framing materials that require cleaning and drying. Sounds like a ton of work, but SERVPRO technicians train for this.

So far we have only covered steps 1-4 of someone’s 10-step online guide to flood damage recovery in your home. Do you still want to tackle these incidents on your own, or would you rather have an expertly trained restoration specialist from SERVPRO on your side?

Contact SERVPRO of Helena & Great Falls for qualified flood damage restoration services you can count on to get you back on track. (406)458-6008.

Hire Professionals For Sewage and Water Damage Restoration

7/7/2016 (Permalink)

Water Damage Hire Professionals For Sewage and Water Damage Restoration Picture from a water job that sat for 3 months. The home was covered in mold.

When water damage resulting from sewage issues or some other problem affects your property, you need to take effective action immediately. Although the water issue may seem minor, it can cause substantive damage to your house if it is not eliminated quickly and correctly. And while you may be inclined to start the water removal process on your own, it is important always to have this work completed by a team of professionals from SERVPRO  Here are several reasons why:

Water Damage Is Progressive
Water damage can worsen with each passing moment. The longer you postpone calling water damage restoration experts to fix the problems, the greater the damages will be. Apart from obvious damage to contents and building materials, you may also be victimized by a mold infestation if the water is not removed promptly. Exposure to fungi may cause health effects as well as increase restoration costs.

Sewage Water is Dangerous
If the excessive water on your property contains sewage, it is very dangerous. In fact, sewage water contains pathogens, pesticides, and waste matter. Black water causes health implications if you come in contact with this type of water. Contact professionals who can remove the sewage water quickly and safely. Don't attempt to do it yourself. Training, specialized equipment, and hazmat clothing are required for a return of safety to your property.

Electrical Hazards
Water, being a conductor of electricity, can send shocks powerful enough to cause electrocution under some circumstances. Whether you're dealing with black, gray or clean water, the extraction process brings with it electrical hazards. Don't subject yourself to the risk of electrocution. Instead, allow the experienced professionals from SERVPRO to complete the process for you. These individuals possess the knowledge and hands-on experience necessary to complete the process in a safe manner that precludes you and them from experiencing illness or injury.

Call SERVPRO Now
Although water damage in Longmont can disrupt your well-being and cause inconveniences within your daily life, it doesn't have to drain all your energy and assets. To restore your property and resume your way of life, contact the water damage restoration experts of SERVPRO. Our IICRC-certified technicians will clean and dry your property with remarkable speed, and we'll also provide you with complete customer service that keeps you calm throughout the remediation process. We will document, invite you for a final walk-through,  and guarantee that your home is dry and safe. "Like it never even happened."
Highly-Trained Water Restoration Specialists

As water damage specialists, SERVPRO of Helena & Great falls has the experience, expertise, and the advanced training that enables us to get your property dried quickly and thoroughly. We use scientific drying principles and provide validation and documentation that your property is dry and the job is complete. Learn about our water damage training and certificates. Call us 24/7 for help. (406) 431-8083.

Why choose Professional Damage Restoration?

7/7/2016 (Permalink)

Water Damage Why choose Professional Damage Restoration? SERVPRO equipment doing its work.

According to the IICRC (Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification) there are a couple of reasons to choose a professional over doing it your self. Below are a few reasons:

  • The process of fire and water restoration is very involved when it is performed properly.

  • With quick reaction time and the appropriate skill set, a technician can help to prevent further damage and repair that which has already been done

  • The process and equipment used during fire and water restoration will vary from case to case, since different materials require their own unique care

  • For fire damage, general cleaning is done to remove ash and soot from ceiling to floor

  • The quick remediation of the problem is important for more than repairs, it is also a health consideration

  • Choose a company for fire and water restoration with the appropriate licenses and proof that they have the proper insurance.

  • Whether the work to be done is in a commercial or residential location, technicians with experience and certification should perform the damage recovery.

  • Call us at SERVPRO of Helena & Great Falls so we can help you with your water, fire or mold damage. 

Lewis and Clark County and Cascade County 24 Hour Emergency Water Damage Service

4/26/2016 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Helena & Great Falls is available 24 hours a day for water emergencies, large or small. When you are dealing with water damage, immediate action is crucial. A delay of just a few hours can greatly increase the severity of the water damage.

We Answer the Phone Ready to Help
Call Today - (406) 458-6008

We understand that when you call us, you may be feeling confused, stressed, and vulnerable. You need an expert to guide you through this crisis. SERVPRO of  Helena & Great Falls has the specific water damage training and experience to help you through this tough time. We specialize in water damage restoration—in fact, it's the cornerstone of our business.

What to Expect

When you call, we will ask several questions regarding your water damage emergency. These questions will help us determine what equipment and resources to bring, including how many trained SERVPRO Professionals may be needed.

Our SERVPRO Representative will ask several questions:

  • Your name and contact information
  • Your insurance information (if applicable)
  • The street address of the water-damaged home or business
  • When did the flooding or water damage occur?
  • What caused the water damage (if known)?
  • Is there electricity available (on-site)?

About SERVPRO of Helena & Great Falls

SERVPRO of Helena & Great Falls specializes in the cleanup and restoration of residential and commercial property after a fire, smoke or water damage event. Our staff is highly trained in property damage restoration. From initial and ongoing training at SERVPRO’s corporate training facility to regular IICRC-industry certification, rest assured our staff is equipped with the knowledge to restore your property.