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SERVPRO San Gabriel is Ready for this years Santa Ana Winds

10/21/2019 (Permalink)

Green SERVPRO VAN SERVPRO San Gabriel is ready to assist in any post fire recovery effort.

SERVPRO of San Gabriel is well-prepared for this year's Santa Ana Winds. We are monitoring current wind trends carefully with you, our neighbors, and are ready to help in the event that any wind-related damage occurs.

This year we experienced several heavy rain cycles contributing to brush and vegetation growth. this growth is now dry and can serve as a potential fuel source. This year Santa Ana Winds has the potential to claim larger areas due to the abundant fuel source and dry conditions. 

As we post this blog post, firefighters are currently battling fires in the Pacific Palisades. The fires threaten multimillion-dollar homes and have caused the evacuation of homeowners.

Give us a call 24/7 and we can take control of the situation and put you at ease. 626-478-0286

How to Detect Hidden Water Damage | SERVPRO® of San Gabriel

10/15/2019 (Permalink)

Flooding is sometimes the cause of water damage, but that is not always the case. Many mishaps can lead to water damage in the home, especially in hidden places that are not normally checked.

Discovering water damage is overwhelming and can be costly. For a typical water damage insurance claim, it will be over $6,000. Knowing how to detect this hidden water damage will assist homeowners in discovering it before it gets too severe.

Where to Look for Potential Water Damage
  • Check for water below windows. Where windows are joined with the wall can allow water to seep into the wood below over time, so it is important to check for watermarks.

  • Check siding joints. Where siding panels join—especially at corners—can be a prime spot for leaks to occur on the plywood below.

  • Inspect door thresholds. The metal plates of the threshold are not weather-sealed, allowing water to spread to the wood below. Inspect often to ensure the wood has not begun to swell.

  • Assess softness of exterior paint. Paint layered upon paint is not always properly sealed against the elements, allowing water to slip through. If it is soft to the touch, there might be water damage underneath.

  • Move the dishwasher. Dishwashers deal with a large volume of water, meaning they are primed for leaks. Moving the dishwasher out often is a great way to ensure there are no secret water spots.

  • Watch walls for discoloration. Water pipes run behind walls, and if you notice discoloration, that could indicate a leak.

  • Be sure the toilet is steady. A toilet’s seals grow weaker with age and can cause a leak so gradual that it goes unnoticed. However, a wobbly toilet might be indicative of flooring damage below.

If your home has suffered water damage (even in a hidden place like one of these), we are happy to help! Give us a call right away, and we’ll get there quickly.

So Cal bracing for 2nd round of Santa Ana Winds

10/15/2019 (Permalink)

The National Weather Service is giving the public advance notice that they might have to cope with a fresh round of Santa Ana winds. A high-pressure system begins to affect Southern California’s weather on Sunday.

The early forecast models indicate that high pressure will develop in the Great Basin over the weekend and could generate a Santa Ana wind event this week.

Last week Santa Ana's fanned several wildfires in Southern California, including the Saddleridge fire, which had charred nearly 8,000 acres in the Sylmar area through early Sunday evening.

Making matters worse, local power authorities have cut power to thousands of homes in potential fire areas to reduce the risk of fire caused by equipment failure. We are ready to assist any post-fire incident should they occur

Winds and available fuel increase risk of CA Fires

10/15/2019 (Permalink)

Five of California’s most destructive wildfires on record occurred in 2017.

In fact, 2017 is the costliest year on record for insurers with total U.S. wildfire peril totaling $16bn in losses. The full damage in California is estimated to be as high as $180bn in costs stemming from fire suppression to insurance and recovery expenditures.

California may not see a reprieve in the years to come. For the first time, the National Interagency Fire Center’s Predictive Outlook for 2018 is forecasting above-normal large fire potential due to the persistence of dry fuels, frequent offshore winds, and generally unfavorable weather

Preparing Your Business to Face Any Emergency Situation | SERVPRO® of San Gabriel

9/19/2019 (Permalink)

What are some of the aspects of running a business that come to mind? There are a multitude of things that must be taken care of, but one of the most important factors to think about is emergency preparedness.

Creating an emergency preparedness plan isn’t going to make your business impervious to emergencies and disasters, but it does offer a sense of security for you and your employees when it comes to safety. Your employees will understand what to do and what is expected of them if a disaster or emergency situation should occur.

Create the Plans

Have you completed an emergency preparedness plan for various disaster situations? If not, may we suggest that you make it a priority and do so soon?

There are numerous emergencies your business should have a preparedness plan in place for, including:

  • Fire
  • Severe weather, including thunderstorms and winter storms
  • Other natural hazards like floods, hurricanes, tornadoes and earthquakes
  • Human-caused hazards, including accidents or acts of violence
  • Technology-related issues like power outages and equipment failure

Emergencies, whether human-caused or from Mother Nature, can cause panic and chaos. If there is no emergency plan for your business, the situation could escalate and become even more stressful quickly.

You should make sure that safety training and familiarization of emergency preparedness plans are included in the company onboarding process, team-building activities and continuing education opportunities. By helping employees familiarize themselves with proper safety protocol and emergency procedures, you’re not only giving them the tools to protect themselves, but you are also setting them up to help protect guests/visitors and the business itself.

Start Here

As you look into beginning to set up an emergency plan for your business, you’ll first want to evaluate which scenarios are most likely to occur—and also consider even those that may be considered a longshot. After all, it’s better to be prepared for any worst-case scenario and not be caught by surprise.

You can find plenty of online resources to help guide you through this process, including Ready.gov, the American Red Cross, FEMA and the CDC.

Look into conducting a business impact analysis (BIA) to help predict the potential effect a disaster may have on your business. This would include lost or delayed sales and income, increased expenses from repairs, and delayed implementation of business plans. Don’t forget to make sure a crisis communications plan is in place, too.

Reviewing and practicing your emergency preparedness plan is paramount, so once you have come up with a plan, be sure to go over it and practice with employees. This will ensure the process remains fresh in their minds and can help employees feel more empowered.

Disaster can strike when you least expect it, but by being prepared and having a plan in place, your business will be better suited to handle whatever Mother Nature has in store. If the worst should happen and your business is damaged, know that SERVPRO® of San Gabriel is here to help make it “Like it never even happened.”

What steps will CAL FIRE take to engage communities and inform the public?

9/19/2019 (Permalink)

CAL FIRE continues to partner with numerous organizations to educate the public about fire prevention and safe practices through social media, community meetings, fairs and other events. CAL FIRE units also educate and inform the public about prescribed burn projects in local areas through social media and community events.

In addition, CAL FIRE will work with the Forest Management Task Force to develop coordinated messaging on public education campaigns, including coordinated messaging for Cal Volunteers and Office of Emergency Services grants consistent with AB 72 enacted earlier this year.

2019 Cal Fire Fact Sheet.

Creating a Natural Disaster Plan for Your Business | SERVPRO® of San Gabriel

9/17/2019 (Permalink)

When everything from floods, hurricanes and tornadoes to wildfires and earthquakes happen, our businesses as well as our homes and families can be impacted. It is important to be prepared for these worst-case scenarios—and the key to this is advance preparation and planning.

Being prepared for those scenarios involves creating a natural disaster plan for your business. Some aspects to consider when designing that plan are discussed in this blog.

What to Take Into Consideration

There are many different factors you will need to consider when building a disaster plan for your business. This includes your employees as well as your assets such as equipment and merchandise.

Some of those considerations to include should be:

  1. How to safely protect your employees
  2. How to secure your assets
  3. How to get business up and running again

There have been many checklists made available to us by sources like the Red Cross, FEMA and Ready.gov that will help you identify areas that need to be included in your natural disaster preparedness plan. These sources will also show you just how unprepared you could be.

Employee Safety Is Vital

Because disaster often strikes without warning, it’s important to have a plan that lays out procedures and safety measures for employees and visitors. Make sure evacuation routes and exits from your facility are all clearly and visibly marked, provide an area where employees can take shelter when necessary, consider installing emergency lighting, and have designated staff “safety wardens” that are properly trained and ready to assist in all emergency efforts.

When you identify a shelter space, a basement or storm cellar is the ideal location in the event of tornadoes or other high-wind situations. Choose a small interior room or closet or interior hallway if you have no basement space.

Protect the Assets

If you have a brick and mortar location for your business, that does not mean your assets inside are fully protected. You’ll have to make mindful choices about how to protect them.

Be sure to have a comprehensive and up-to-date inventory of these items and, if possible, having photographs prior to a disaster whenever possible is always helpful for the insurance claim process. If your assets are based on a computer server, take the steps necessary to ensure that the backup system is regularly performing backups and that the storage system cannot be damaged.

If you own your building, take some time and talk with a contractor to locate areas that could be improved on with regard to structural integrity. This contractor can also walk you through possible safety upgrades and identify any areas that may not meet codes for certain weather situations. .

Back to Business

In the unfortunate event a natural disaster does occurs, it is highly likely that, due to damage, your business will have to shut down while repairs are being made. Every day you remain closed is another day of lost profits. Set up a special “rainy day” fund that will be available to use should you incur additional costs that are not covered by your insurance.

It is a good idea to compile a list of contractors who will be available for any construction concerns or repairs and to find a company that specializes in cleanup and restoration service that will be available to quickly respond to your emergency situation.

With SERVPRO® of San Gabriel, you can count on us to get to the disaster faster and make it “Like it never even happened.” Our training and expertise have prepared us to help with water damage, storm damage, fire damage and mold remediation quickly and effectively.

Knowing what to do when disaster strikes your business is of the utmost importance. When it comes to the cleanup and restoration aspects, depend on SERVPRO® of San Gabriel to be there for you.

Ideas for Protecting Your Home From Water Damage | SERVPRO® of San Gabriel

9/17/2019 (Permalink)

Water damage from a pipe bursting, a malfunctioning appliance or even storm damage is one of the most common and costliest disasters a homeowner can face.

But while water damage is common, it’s also preventable in many cases. Let’s take a look at some ways to safeguard your home:

Ways to Protect Your Home

Not only is water damage a hassle to deal with, but it can have a long-term impact on your home further down the road. Mold is one of the most common side effects of water damage, as mold can begin to grow and flourish within 48 hours of exposure to moisture.

When thinking about ways to protect your home, try to break it down by areas of impact. Those areas could include basements, kitchens, bathrooms, flooring and ceilings to start out.

Basement water damage is often cause by water seepage. You can help prevent that happening by resealing areas in the basement where water could sneak in, making sure water drains away from your home and installing a backwater valve.

Your kitchen and bathrooms can experience water damage because of plumbing issues and appliance failures.

To protect your home against that, be sure you:

  • Inspect all appliances regularly, watching for issues with hoses and faucets
  • Check the seal and caulking around your showers and tubs to make sure they are watertight
  • Know where the main shut-off valve is in your home
  • Don’t leave the house while the washer or dishwasher is running

As much as you would like to protect your possessions in your home from water damage, it is not always possible, but there are ways you can at least decrease the amount of damage and loss. Using waterproof bins to store items is recommended, as is keeping items stored on shelving off of the floor—which is advisable when using your basement for storage.

What to Do if Water Damage Happens

In the unfortunate event your home does experience a water damage situation, you can stand a good chance of salvaging items that can be dried out within 48 hours.

Contact your insurance company immediately, evaluate the extent of the water damage to your home and identify the type of water that is involved.

Here are the types of water involved in a water damage situation:

  1. “Clean” water. This could be from rain, condensation, leaky pipes, etc.

  2. “Gray” water. This is slightly dirty water from dishwashers, washing machines, clean toilets, etc.

  3. “Black” water. This is water from sewage or serious flooding from nearby rivers, etc. This water can cause serious health problems.

Following a water damage disaster, you should remove wet objects, dehumidify and dry your home out quickly, and be sure to disinfect remaining materials.

Pro tip: By freezing your wet books, photos and papers in a frost-free freezer, you will allow yourself some extra time to take care of them. This prevents mold and mildew from developing and causing more deterioration. Once able, you can remove them from the freezer and air-dry or fan-dry the pages.

It may seem like recovering from water damage is an overwhelming and slightly impossible task, but it doesn’t have to be. You can call on the highly trained experts at SERVPRO® of San Gabriel, who are here to make it like it never even happened!

Protecting Your Home From Water Damage | SERVPRO® of San Gabriel

9/17/2019 (Permalink)

Your kitchen and bathrooms can experience water damage because of plumbing issues and appliance failures.

To protect your home against that, be sure you:

  • Inspect all appliances regularly, watching for issues with hoses and faucets
  • Check the seal and caulking around your showers and tubs to make sure they are watertight
  • Know where the main shut-off valve is in your home
  • Don’t leave the house while the washer or dishwasher is running

As much as you would like to protect your possessions in your home from water damage, it is not always possible, but there are ways you can at least decrease the amount of damage and loss. Using waterproof bins to store items is recommended, as is keeping items stored on shelving off of the floor—which is advisable when using your basement for storage.

Contact your insurance company immediately, evaluate the extent of the water damage to your home and identify the type of water that is involved.

What Can Be Damaged by a Lightning Strike? | SERVPRO® of San Gabriel

9/10/2019 (Permalink)

A thunderstorm dispels electrical energy by casting lightning bolts, which are some of the most violent examples of a thunderstorm’s power.

By causing wiring damage, ruining electronics and causing structural damage, there are quite a few things that can be damaged in the event of a lightning strike. For homeowners, it is wise to make a point to understand how lightning happens and what it can damage in order to take action after a storm has passed.

From an Electrical Charge to a Lightning Bolt

Thunder and lightning are a direct result of an electrical charge within the weather front, something all thunderstorms contain. When some of this energy is expelled by the storm, we see that as a lightning bolt and hear the thunder that is a result of the waves it produces.

When this energy is dispelled, the bolt will either dart across the clouds or toward the ground, where it will often strike an object on its way. This is the reason that lightning can be so hazardous to homes because it will route through electrical wires and cause havoc.

Things to Inspect After a Lightning Strike

After a lightning bolt strikes on or near your home, it is important to inspect the following, which are routine damages lightning causes:

1. Electrical wiring. Lightning bolts reach temperatures of around 500,000 degrees. They can not only ignite buildings on impact, but they can also damage the wiring as they travel toward the ground, increasing the likelihood of a future electrical fire. Local fire marshals or electricians can often perform tests to assess the damage.

2. Appliance function. The charge lightning transfers to a home’s wires is powerful enough to travel up power cords and ruin any electronic device that’s plugged into the wall without a surge protector. After a storm, check all the electronics in the house to see if they are operational.

3. Foundation and structure. Thunder is created by shock waves when lightning strikes, but these can also occur when lightning hits the ground. These waves have been known to crack foundations and explode chimneys, so survey your home thoroughly after a storm.

If your home has been affected by storm damages or lightning-related fires, give us a call today! We are experts in damage cleanup and can restore your damage quickly.