Recent Storm Damage Posts

Tornado and Earthquakes, does my insurance cover these in PA?

1/26/2022 (Permalink)

In south central Pennsylvania when the word natural disaster is mention we commonly thing average heavy rain storm in the spring, winter blizzards, possibility high winds. It's what we don't experience often in the area to understand how our homeowners insurance would cover events less common such as tornado's or earthquakes. 

Each insurance company offers different coverages and each policy has different options for customer to enroll in various coverage packages. 

According to The Philadelphia Inquirer "So far in 2021, 19 tornadoes have touched down on Pennsylvania soil, three above the 30-year annual normal and eight more than what would be the average total through August, according to the government’s Storm Prediction Center." 

Check with your local insurance provider today to understand if you have coverage for tornado's? 

Winter Storm

1/11/2022 (Permalink)

Winter storms are here in south central Pennsylvania consisting of snow, freezing rain and extreme freezing temperatures. Most customers will experience frozen pipes during several days of below freezing temperatures in January or February.  To prevent these damages, follow these steps:

  • Properly heat all areas of your home well above 32 degrees. Often on days with windchills in the single digits consider at least 55 degrees.
  • Detach the outside garden hose before freezing temperatures begin.
  • Open cabinet doors under sinks to allow warm air to reach it.
  • Have someone check on your un-occupied homes or winterize them with your plumber. Home that hasn’t been checked on for a period of time can cause insurance coverage issues in an event of a claim.

If you find that your pipe has frozen shut off the water immediately. Next contact SERVPRO of Chambersburg at 717-261-0310. Also contact a plumber to fix the damaged pipe, save the broken piece for insurance evidence. Finally follow up with your homeowner insurance to understand what your coverage is including your deductible.

Frequently Asked Question After Flooded Basement

11/3/2021 (Permalink)

Many homes across the United States have been affected by Hurricane Idea in September 2021. Homes in the Chambersburg and surrounding location experience water damage in their basement. This is most often caused by a failed sub-pump when it cannot keep up or the power was loss.  Customer can begin review this list to better understand “What to Expect for Hurricane Cleanup”  

  1. Do you have insurance coverage? If a customer has a flooded basement, they will most likely only have insurance coverage if they have back up drain endorsement due to a sump-pump failure. These coverages are offered most in $5,000 or $10,000 packages. 
  2. How much can restoration services? Each jobs every very on a specific such as materials, square foot, condition. A general rule of thumb is that a finished basement could be in the range of approximately $6-7.50 per square foot. This would total up to a 1200 Sq. foot basement to =$7000.00+ just for removal of effected drywall, flooring, and drying equipment. 
  3. When should services be scheduled? It’s always recommended to ensure the water has stopped entering and even better if you’ve repaired the damaged pump if appliable.
  4. Who replaces the drywall/flooring after the drying is completed? Any subcontractor of your choice may be able to complete this work for you. You can also inquire the SERVPRO of Chambersburg for their preferred subcontractor’s availability as well.
  5. What can customer do to keep minimize damage and keep cost down? Personal contents can acuminate cost for service techs to move and sort threw wet vs non wet. Customer can easily remove unwanted wet contents from the space while ensure they don’t cause water damage to an unaffected area while moving. Customer should log with a list and photo for their insurance of anything damaged needing replacement value.

Winter Storm Prep for Winter 2021

11/3/2021 (Permalink)

A winter snow storm with two people walking A winter storm.

Winter is near for the southcentral Pennsylvania region, and we need to familiarize ourselves with the winter storm preparedness. Take immediate action if you hear these words on the news according to the redcross.org. Winter storm WARNING: life threating, severe winter conditions have begun or will begin within 24 hours. Blizzard Warning: Sustained winds or frequent gust of 35 miles per hour plus considerable falling or blowing snow reducing visibility to less than a quarter mile, expected to prevail for three hours or longer

Before the storm prepare your home, car, and family for the storm.

  • Have food for at least several days
  • Have good tires and a full tank of gas in your vehicles, recovery gear, and a blanket incase your stuck in the elements.
  • Prevent your home from freezing pipes

Have ample supply of heat to include a back up heat method incase of loss of power

The Weather Is Changing

4/1/2021 (Permalink)

Gutter Build Up Over Winter months gutters can easily become built up, it is important to clear any debris to prevent any damages.

Winter Damages

Winter has passed, spring is here and that means summer is on the way.  Not only is the weather changing, but so are some important things to keep an eye out for your home.  Winter may have left some damage to your home, and now is the best time to look over your home and make sure the any damage that was caused during the winter is addressed.  

Roof

The roof is one of the most important parts of your home, is protects the interior of your home from rain and many other outside elements that may cause damage. It is especially important to check your roof and attic to make sure there is no leaks or damage to the roof.  If you see any damp or wet areas in your attic is important to see where the water may have entered. Over the winter is it possible that snow built up on your roof may have caused damage and should be repaired as soon as possible to avoid any further damage.

Gutters

It is important that gutters are cleaned out periodically. The gutters on a home allow the water to run off the roof. If there is any build up in the gutter it may hinder them from doing their job leading to possible water damage. If you notice that your gutters are full take the time to clean them out and remove any debris in order to restore the water flow to avoid any damages to your home.

Grading

It is also important that the grading around your home is correct. If the land started to slope down into the home, there is a possibility that water can enter the home through the foundation and cause water damage. This kind of water damage is typically not covered through insurance policies, so it is particularly important that the grading is correct.

It is important to check these places in order to prevent mold growth and any damages to your roof may cause a moldy attic or even worse.

If mold or water damages your home, call us at (717) 261-0310

Wind Damage

3/18/2021 (Permalink)

Storm Damage From Tree This home fell victim to a tree during a severe wind storm.

During the summer of 2020 we experienced a severe wind/hail storm that left many homeowners with damage to their homes. The night it occurred we had up to 15 calls within a few hours time. We scheduled the jobs according to when they came in and began to attack the large task ahead of us.

One customer had her patio furniture blow across her lawn and shatter a large bay window. She quickly called SERVPRO of Chambersburg to come out. Our technicians were able to arrive and clean up the broken glass from the window as well as the broken contents from the wind. Another service we were able to offer to the homeowner was to inventory all the damaged contents so that the homeowner had a detailed list to turn into her insurance company. 

Another call we arrived to was a large commercial building after their metal roof had been blown off. The building was severely damaged by water that was able to enter after the roof had blown off. At the time our offices were swamped with call after call but that didn't stop us from calling in another franchise to help assist and make sure that the job did not skip a beat to make sure the local business was able to reopen as quickly as possible. 

Another call we responded to was from a tree branch damaging a roof causing water to get in and flood three levels of a home. Our team was able to quickly remove the contents out of the affected area and begin the demolition part of the job to begin the dry out. Our team was able to finish the demo and set up equipment all in one day to make sure the structure dried out as quickly as possible. 

Another call that we handed off to another franchise was from a trampoline blowing across a neighborhood and damaging the side of a home. 

Another call we received was a home that had caught fire after lightening had struck the home. 

Another call we responded to was that a few shingles had blown off the roof without the homeowner noticing, after a few days that had noticed a large amount of mold starting to grow in the ceiling of their garage. SERVPRO Of Chambersburg was able to quickly put together an estimate and gain insurance approval to address the mold. 

The listed stories above are only about half of the calls we received that evening. Many times in the event of a storm no one is prepared to have damage to their home, that is where SERVPRO Of Chambersburg comes in. We are always prepared to tackle any damages from a storm, regardless if it is one small job, many average jobs, or even large losses. 

Flooded Basement? Hardwood floors? WE CAN SAVE THEM

6/23/2020 (Permalink)

Floor Drying System Drying hardwood floors. Call us at (717)-261-0310

Flood Damage

After a heavy rain a house can quickly flood, especially a basemen. We at SERVPRO will quickly arrive to remove the standing water. 

Hardwood Floors

After hardwood floors are damaged by water many people think that they will have to be removed. Almost all of our customers are extremely happy when we tell them that we may be able to save them. Keep in mind calling us as soon as possible ups the chances of the us being have to dry out the hard wood floors. We have a high tech drying system and floor mats that will actually dry out the wood.  Discoloring of the wood floor may still happen, however most hardwood floors can be sanded down and refinished if that happens. 

Checking For Damages After A Storm

6/22/2020 (Permalink)

Damaged Roof Damaged roof after a severe hail storm.

Accessing Storm Damage

After a major storm we recommend to inspect your home for damages. One of the things that takes the most beating during storms is typicaly a roof. However, it may be hard to fully see the extent of damage on the roof from the ground. Ifyou do not have a ladder or feel safe getting on the roof to inspect it below are some things to look for that may indicate roof damage. 

What to look for ? 

  • Dents on siding
  • Rips in window screens
  • Dings on gutters
  • Blown off shingles 
  • Hail Strikes on roof
  • Dimples on metal roof

If you are not completely sure if you have damage or not call your insurance company for a roof inspection and they will be able to determine if you actually do have damage. 

Questions? Call us! 717-261-0310 

Rain Rain Go Away

5/20/2020 (Permalink)

Flooded Basement After a heavy rain this homeowners sump pump stopped working causing their basement to flood.

After a heavy rain our phone begin to ring and they may not stop for a few day. We have noticed that after a heavy rain or several days of rain that homeowners experience flooded basements. Unfortunately, some homeowners are not covered by their insurance company for ground water or flooded basement due to a storm event. We at SERVPRO can not tell a homeowner their exact coverage, their insurance company will have to determine if they are covered or not. Regardless SERVPRO can be the ones to help. More times than not the reason the basements flood is due o an issue with the homes sump pump. Our truck mount makes it easy for our team to quickly extract the water out of the structure. Our  certified water techs are trained to find all the materials that are wet and how to handle each type of material. 

Hail, Wind Damage What homeowner should know.

5/19/2020 (Permalink)

A roof shingle with a chalk mark to indentify damage A roof shingle with a chalk mark to indentify damage

Every few years Franklin County PA will have a storm that causes hail or wind damage to homes. The damage can be minor to a small area of the roof just in need of a repair. Sometimes the damage is so severe it covers a large or whole roof and will need removed and replaced. We encourage customer to be caution during this time as you may have door to door sales representative from a new roofing company. In the industry these are often called “storm chasers”. They will often try to oversell the amount of damage and promise for the insurance to pay for the damages. These company’s often have been in business for a short period of time causing issues if they replace your roof and you later have an issue and they are now out of business.

We recommend homeowners to have a local trusted company to help them ethically navigate the process. Customer’s may hire SERVPRO of Chambersburg to be the expert to help coordinate the insurance and contractors needed for repairs. SERVPRO of Chambersburg has been trusted by many insurance companies to perform their inspection during difficult times like the COVID-19 shutdowns where insurance adjuster are limited to the kind of visit they can conduct to be essential.

Why trust a restoration company to help you in construction? We are the areas preferred vendor to repair homes with an insurance claim. Our owner, Marlin Myers has spent his first part of his career running his own construction company for 20+ years and completed more roofs then he can count. See our before and after work here: https://www.SERVPROchambersburg.com/before-after-photos/building-services

Water Damage, Fire Damage, Tree Damage?

4/28/2020 (Permalink)

Tree Damage After a intense ice storm a customer had a tree fall on their roof.

SERVPRO responds to a wide variety of damages. A lot of people know to call SERVPRO if they have water damage, or fire damage. However, if a tree collapses on your roof and comes through the ceiling, did you know you can call SERVPRO for that damage as well? Yes, that's right, you can call SERVPRO to come clean up the unthinkable. After a severe ice storm, wind storm, hurricane, whatever caused the tree to fall, we'll be there for you. 

Spring Showers = Basements Flooding

4/27/2020 (Permalink)

3 Vans with SERVPRO Green Call the SERVPRO team to help you in your time of need!

We have all heard the saying April Showers Bring May flowers. In south central Pennsylvania we normally experience a rainy spring that can overwhelm basements causing flooding. The most common causes are gutter drains clogged or too close to the foundation and sub-pump failure. Once the basement starts to flood it can be hard to control it till the rain has stopped.

If you find your basement flooded see if you can trouble shoot your sub-pump to get it working. If that does not work call a plumber for a replacement as this will take away the bulk of the water. After you have got the issue corrected, call SERVPRO of Chambersburg 717-261-0310 to request a service call to begin water damage restoration or water damage cleanup. The professionals will collect the necessary information to properly respond to the home. You should also check with your insurance for coverage as flooded basements can have limited coverages or exclusion that your agent or claims department can help review the coverages with you.

Wind, Hail or Tree damage from a storm, Call SERVPRO

4/27/2020 (Permalink)

Roof Shingles with a chalk mark to identify damaged area. Roof Shingles with a chalk mark to identify damaged area.

During high winds or storms, you home may suffer from wind, hail or tree damage. SERVPRO of Chambersburg can come assess your property for damage and work alongside your insurance to develop a plan of action. On more sever storm damages to your home you may need an emergency board up to prevent further damage.

Insurance coverages in storm damage situation will vary per the policy the customer has. Some insurance policies will cover a portion of the damage for example on siding damage it can be only corner to corner of the damaged area. Therefor there may be a small visual difference once repairs as the siding may be discontinues or sun faded that will prohibit it to be matched exactly. Other insurance policy may cover for the entire home to be replaced to match.

SERVPRO Storm Teams in Action 2018

5/3/2019 (Permalink)

In September and October, our Disaster Recovery Teams went into action, responding to those in need after the devastation left by Hurricanes Florence and Michael. DH Storm was activated for response to North Carolina wherein they mobilized 343 crews from 133 Franchises across the country.

 Less than one month after Florence devastated North Carolina, Hurricane Michael hit the Florida Panhandle as a Category 4 Storm. Storm Team Wilson quickly activated to assist those impacted by this major Hurricane. So far, Team Wilson has activated 115 crews from 51 Franchises.

 We continue to hear about how SERVPRO Green is everywhere in impacted areas. SERVPRO is truly making an impact on those affected by these natural disasters. Both events are on-going and we certainly appreciate all the Storm Heroes that have dedicated their time and effort to the SERVPRO Brand while sacrificing weeks and months away from their families back home. 

Keep your business running after a storm.

5/2/2019 (Permalink)

One of the planning tools SERVPRO offers, the ERP.

As a business owner or manager, you are a leader in your community, and have the opportunity to set an example for your employees, customers, and community to follow.

This year, join your community in preparing for emergencies and disasters of all types, and leading efforts to encourage the community as a whole to become more prepared.

Disasters not only devastate individuals and neighborhoods, but entire communities, including businesses of all sizes. As an employer in your community, having a business continuity plan can help protect your company, its employees, and its infrastructure, and maximizes your chances of recovery after an emergency or disaster.

Ready Business asks companies to take three simple steps: - Plan to stay in business - Encourage your employees to become ready - Protect your investment

Ready Business, an extension of the Ready Campaign, helps business owners and managers of small and medium-sized businesses to prepare their employees, operations, and assets in the event of an emergency. At ready.gov/business, companies can find vital information on how to get started preparing their organization and addressing their unique needs during an emergency.

Storm Preparedness

4/24/2019 (Permalink)

Your family and your home needs preparation for a storm plan before it happens. Conversation should take place with all family members of if a natural disaster were to occur where would you go to meet up at. What your grab and no bag would need it. Clothing, medicine, flashlights, important personal documents are all items you should consider taking. Ask yourself if you had 5 minutes to grab your must haves, could you do it? 

At your home pending the type of storm it is you'll have some work to prevent damage from occurring. Securing your loose belongings like furniture and trash cans. Prior to a heavy rainstorm check your gutter drains that they are directed away from your house and functioning. 

After the storm has stopped you need to take photos for your insurance of any damage prior to cleanup beginning. 

Proper Preparedness Can Reduce the Impact of Flood Damage in Chambersburg

4/23/2019 (Permalink)

A flooded basement in Blue Ridge Summit PA

Most people are aware of how unpredictable the weather is, and how heavy downpours even in areas far off, can lead to flooding. What many people are not aware of is the different ways one severe weather event can flood their homes. It is possible for a property to be damaged by flooding while those around it remain intact even though all are affected by the same weather event. To make your Chambersburg property more resilient to flooding, you should learn the different ways flood-related damages can occur.

Driving rain can cause flood damage in Chambersburg properties by forcing water through holes or gaps around doors, windows or other access points. This seepage can happen in any section of your property, even in rooms higher than the ground floor. Therefore, even a proper elevation cannot protect property from damages caused by driving rain. Our SERVPRO technicians can help inspect your property to establish whether the sealant around doors, windows, and other gaps are filled in correctly. Eliminating any clefts protects your property. 

Air vents provide an access point for water to enter your property and though minimal, it can still cause problems such as mold. Unfortunately, you cannot do without vents, so unlike the gaps around windows, you cannot seal them shut. However, you can cover them when expecting heavy rain. You can landscape the area around your property to help prevent water from pooling. Such landscaping changes can help prevent flooding. 

Even with all these preparation steps performed, it is not a guarantee against damaging by flooding. Part of your preparation should, therefore, focus on what to do after water breaches the barriers you have set. Our SERVPRO team can help you respond appropriately by extracting any standing water in the affected areas, as well as cleaning and drying them to avoid issues like rot or mold. We have the necessary equipment including different types of pumps, water extractors, and drying equipment. 

Call SERVPRO of Chambersburg at (717) 261-0310. We can help you make the necessary plans to protect your property from flooding or clean it up if it floods, leaving it "Like it never even happened."

Flood Damage and Odor in your Chambersburg Home

4/23/2019 (Permalink)

Drying a basement post water damage

SERVPRO’s Steps to Ridding Your Home of Bad Odors after Flood Damage

Flood damage due to storms often contains dirty, contaminated water that can leave your home with a rank odor even after water removal. Expert technicians use various techniques to eliminate this odor and get your home smelling like home again.

SERVPRO professionals combat the foul odors after flood damage to your Dallas home by employing a multi-directional approach. Here are the steps involved in the successful elimination of bad odor after flood damage.

Eliminating the Source

The first step to combat bad odors is to locate and eliminate the source as soon as possible. No deodorizing equipment is going to mask the odor forever if the source is not eliminated. Our IICRC certified technicians make sure that they eliminate the source of the odor whether it is sewage, residual moisture, trash or dead animals before they start the actual deodorizing procedure.

Multiple Method Approaches 

SERVPRO professionals use multiple method approaches to combat various kinds of smells after flood damage. We use a wide array of deodorizing techniques including injection method, spray method and wet and thermal fogging to eliminate different types of odors.

Using Different Types of Deodorants 

No single deodorant works on all kinds of smells. So, we use a combination of different kinds of deodorants to combat different scents. Whether the odor is real or imaginary, we have a deodorizing agent that is perfect for any situation. Here are some of the deodorants that SERVPRO technicians use most often.

  1. Masking agents: These agents cover bad odors by concealing them with some pleasant-smelling fragrances. These are great for both real and imaginary smells.
  2. Filtration and absorption agents: These agents absorb moisture and some odor-causing molecules from the air and eliminate them. A typical example of such an agent is activated charcoal.
  3. Pairing agents: These are chemicals that combine with odor-causing particles in the air and make them fall on the ground. Once they are no longer suspended in the air, they can be swiftly cleaned up from the floor.
  4. Electrically generated deodorizer: This equipment produces ozone, which is an unstable oxygen molecule. The ozone combines chemically with the odor-causing particle in the air and neutralizes it.

Call SERVPRO of Chambersburg to inquire an estimate for your services. 

Storms come in a variety of shapes and sizes

4/23/2019 (Permalink)

Tornado damage in St. Thomas PA

Storm damages change based on your location as the california area will have wildfires but then in our area of south central PA those are very uncommon in this area. It's still important to be informed on the various kinds of storms that could occur in your area. The spring of 2019 we had a few severe storms in the area that produces high winds even a few tornadoes. This can cause little damage as to a small branch of a tree to fall or a few shingles on your roof missing. The other side is that the damage could be extensive cause your roof to blow off completely, a large tree fall on to the home or hail damage. SERVPRO of Chambersburg can cordiate all your items start to finish for you. This allows your to continue to spend time at work and with family. 

Tornado and Hurricanes in PA?

4/22/2019 (Permalink)

At site completed board up for customer.

In the Chambersburg are many of our homes and business are not prepared for a storm even like hurricane or tornado as they are not very common to make an impact in this area. However if and when they do that can cause serious damage and a costly expense. This expenses may not be included in your average insurance policy and may need to be specially requested to be included. During April 2019 yet to be confirmed but possible a tornado touched in St. Thomas PA to a local business. During the occurrence of the incident no warning for tornadoes at time were in the local weather.  It caught the business owner by surprise and required some major cleanup effort. Surprising the property adjacent to it did not occur any damages, not even the car cover blown off. SERVPRO of Chambersburg was able to provide security control by boarding up windows and garage doors that were broken or flew off. 

Rainy Weekend in Chambersburg PA

2/23/2018 (Permalink)

Rain, rain, go away come again another day! Over the next few days it's expected that in the Chambersburg PA and surrounding areas are going to have some rainy days. Keep an eye on those basement for flooding and be sure to talk to your insurance to know what your covered for. If you experience a flooded basement give us a call at 717-261-0310 to see how we can help you!

Preparing for a disaster

9/29/2016 (Permalink)

Are you ready?

The SERVPRO Emergency READY Profile 

 If your home or business had a fire whom would you call after 911 and Waynesboro fire fighters have left? Your insurance agent? Your banker?  The interior decorator that made your office the warm and inviting place you did business. Now here is the important question. Do you have all of the numbers you need at your fingertips to call all the people you need to help you get back into business or your home quickly?

You can with the SERVPRO Emergency Ready Profile APP. This is free and only takes a little time to gather the info so you are ready for whatever could prevent you from enjoying your home or office.

  • A no-cost assessment of your facility.
  • A concise profile that contains only the critical information needed in the event of an emergency.
  • A guide to help you get back into your building following a disaster.
  • Identification of the line of command for authorizing work to begin.
  • Provides facility details such as shut-off valve locations, priority areas and priority contact information.
  • Profile is viewable online or on your SERVPRO READY APP and is secured with a login and password.

Don't wait until a disaster strikes.

Or visit https://ready.SERVPRO.com/

SERVPRO of Chambersburg 

717-261-0310

It's always best to call us directly. 

Storm Chasing Companys

9/29/2016 (Permalink)

Don't be scammed by storm chasers

Contractor con. Jack and John Thayer trolled neighborhoods after storms, offering to fix damaged homes. The duo stole more than $770,000 in down payments from storm-traumatized homeowners — without fixing the homes. Many victims were elderly. At least the Thayers have a new roof: They received up to 20 years in prison. This story ended in justice but all too often Winston Salem home and business owners are taken advantage of by less than reputable people.

Be wary of door-to-door and trucks patrolling a neighborhood after a storm or telephone sales people.  Recently the BBB of North West NC reported that a consumer was contacted by a gentleman who said they are currently working in the area and they notice that she had storm roof damage and they will send a representative so they can help her claim the insurance for this damage.

You can keep scammers away. Protect your family, bank account and yourself from crooks: Stay alert, ask questions and go slow and pay attention to details.

Contact your insurance agent don’t trust that the contractor will file the claim for you. No one should be filing a claim on your insurance but you. This is a good time to talk with your agent about if you should even file a claim or not. You may need additional information like estimates from a reputable company.  

After a damage to your car or home ... Take photos of the damage and passengers. You can prevent fake injury and damage claims.

Contact your state insurance department or National Insurance Crime Bureau (1-800-835-6422) to report a scam. You can also report a scam with the BBB 

Check with your insurance company about policy coverage and specific filing requirements. Save all receipts, if temporary roofing repairs are necessary. Know what your deductible is and know when to file a claim.

Although you may be anxious to get things back to normal, avoid letting your emotions get the better of you. Don't be pressured into making an immediate decision with a long-term impact. Be proactive in selecting a business and not reactive to sales solicitations. It is common for storm chasers to call and knock on your door.

For major repairs, take time to shop around and get 3-4 estimates based on the same specifications and materials. Check out references that are at least one year old, verify with your local government to find out whether or not businesses are required to be licensed/registered to do work in your area, and check with your local building inspector to see if a building permit is required.

Be wary of door-to-door workers who claim to have leftover materials from a job “down the street” or who do not have a permanent place of business. If salespeople go door-to-door, check to see if your community requires them to have solicitation permits.

Be leery if a worker shows up on your doorstep to announce that your home is unsafe. If you are concerned about possible structural damage in your home, have an engineer, architect or building official inspect it. While most roofing contractors abide by the law, be careful allowing someone you do not know inspect your roof. An unethical contractor may actually create damage to get work. This goes for Mold Remediation also. Contact an independent environmental specialist to perform an air quality test. Or ask if they do the test themselves or do they have a third party perform the test. If the mold mitigater does the testing or the roofer does the inspection what do you think the odds of them finding work for themselves to perform are?

Require a written contract agreement with anyone you hire. Be sure their name, address, license number, if applicable, and phone number are included in the contract. Read and understand the contract in its entirety, and don’t sign a blank contract. A copy of the signed contract is to be given to you at time of signature. What certifications does the company have?

 Call a trusted contractor call SERVPRO of Chambersburg 717-261-0310

Tips for Preparing for a disaster

9/29/2016 (Permalink)

A property that had over 4' of water in the basement after a heavy rain period.

#1 Make a Plan. Living here in Chambersburg, you’re less likely to face an earthquake than a severe storm that could cause flash flooding. Knowing what you could face will help prepare you for emergencies as you go throughout your day to day routine.  Flooding in Florida and Louisiana reminds us that you may not have as much warning with flash floods or sudden storm systems. 

#2 The Details matter. Know the details of how you escape a disaster. Planning the route of where you are going while the fire is burning is not the time to plan your route. Knowing if you are going to a shelter, motel or friends home will help get you there quickly and safely. Ensuring that everyone knows the details of the plan will ensure that your family will meet you at the prescribed place.

#3 Stay informed. Ensuring that you are informed of impending storms by listening to NOAA or the news alerts will keep you aware of changing weather. Being informed is part of being prepared. Local news agencies are committed to alerting their listeners and viewers of dangerous situations. 

#4 Communicate. Most people say I’ll just pick up my cell phone, but that may be down. If local phone lines are overloaded or out of service it is sometimes easier to call or text long distance. Choose an out-of-area emergency contact person. Everyone should have emergency contact information in writing or saved on their cell phones.

#5 Emergency Kit. Having a plan but no tools to implement it with is ineffective. What are some of the basics you need? Water, Food, and Shelter are the big three but what about other necessities?  Do you have medicine that you need?  A small child to care for? What are other items to help you along the way? Think first aid items, rope and flashlights. FEMA has a list of items that will be helpful here. Do you need to be a doomsday prepper? Probably not, but depending on the severity, you may have to rely on your own for 3-4 days before infrastructure is restored.  Be sure you are familiar with what is in the Emergency kit and how to use the items in the kit.

#6 Get trained. Knowing some basic emergency training will also help in a crisis situation. Know how a fire extinguisher works or how to perform CPR. The American Red Cross has education on a number of topics that can be useful in an emergency situation. Learn where the shut offs are for utilities in your home or office. Cutting them off may prevent further damage or making a bad situation even worse. Be sure that your family and coworkers are educated on the plan of what to do in case of an emergency.

#7 Now that you are planning what to do when you are at home, what about if you’re away from home? Talk to your child’s school and ask how they plan or evacuate the school? How do they communicate with you about emergencies? Does your business have a plan?  SERVPRO of Chambersburg  can help you with that. The Emergency Ready Profile can go right beside your employee handbook and be carried with you on your mobile device. Knowing what to do and what to expect in advance is the key to timely mitigation and can help minimize how water and fire damage can affect your business. Call us to get started on your plan 717-261-0310

How to Prepare Your Chambersburg Home for Summer Storms

5/23/2016 (Permalink)

Tip for Storms in Chambersburg

It seems like we just got done with winter storms, and now the residents of Chambersburg already have to deal with summer storms! While summer storms are known to wreak havoc on Chambersburg homes, a little preparation can save you a lot of time and money.We have a few helpful tips that will get you ready for whatever Mother Nature has to throw at you this summer.

Double Check Your Insurance

This may sound like a weird step to take when preparing for a summer storm, but it’s actually more important than most homeowners realize. You see, some insurance policies will only pay you for what your home was worth before the storm. Replacement cost value insurance, however, pays you for the current market value of your property loss. Of course, no one thinks about their insurance until they need it. So if you take the time to learn exactly what is covered and what isn’t, it will help you know if you need to update your policy. Again, you don’t want to have a 300-year old tree crashing into your home to be the reason why you find out what type of insurance you have.

Preventing Summer Storm Damage with Tree Inspections

Sometimes, trees may appear not to show any types of damage before a summer storm. If you have a pivot or a hump on one side of your tree, you may have a root problem. Root problems can eventually make the tree fall over, and a severe summer storm can rapidly increase the likelihood it tips over. If your top branches are bare, there also could be issues with the health of your tree. Also, big hollows and dead wood on a tree is another indication that you might have a problem. Taking the time to inspect the health of your trees is a great way to prevent damage to your home and vehicles.  If you aren’t sure exactly what you should be looking for, it is worth consulting an arborist to find out if you have any issues. If it turns out that you don’t have any issues, you can sleep peacefully at night knowing you, your family, and your home are protected. If you do, it’s a good thing you are getting it taken care of before the summer storms!

Clean Gutters Before Summer Storms

If you don’t clean out your gutters, you risk damage to your basement during a summer storm. If you have a finished basement, it’s especially important to make sure you have a backup battery-powered sump pump system if something were to go wrong. Dirty gutters can also cause damage to your roof and attic by having backed up water enter into your home.

SERVPRO of Chambersburg

Contact SERVPRO of Chambersburg if your carpets do need cleaning. When we leave, your home and your life will be back to normal. For more information on SERVPRO of Chambersburg Inner Harbor’s Services, call 717-261-0310or visit www.SERVPROChambersburg.com

Lightning Safety Tips

5/18/2016 (Permalink)

SERVPRO has helped several customer

Did you know that lightning is the third largest storm-related killer in the U.S., causing nearly one billion dollars in damage per year¹? Those are some sobering statistics you may want to keep in mind the next time you are trying to decide whether to play one more hole of golf or hike an extra mile when a potential storm may be brewing.

While summer is commonly known as the peak season for thunderstorms and lightning, such storms can strike any time and in almost any location year-round. The following guide and tips can help you and your loved ones stay safe and secure should you be caught in a lightning storm.

How Should I Protect Myself?

It is important to understand that there is no safe place outside during a lightning storm. If thunderstorms are expected, you should stop any outdoor activities quickly — even if you are still mowing the lawn or enjoying a picnic. Many lightning casualties occur because people fail to seek shelter soon enough. Keep an eye on local weather conditions and have a plan if thunderstorms are expected. Your home’s best protection against a lightning strike is a lightning protection system. In order to find out more you can contact a certified lightning protection specialist for information.

What if I am Outside During a Storm?

As soon as you hear thunder, stop all outdoor activities and get into a building or a hard-topped vehicle for safety. It may be tempting to get into a golf cart or a lean-to, but those will not provide adequate protection. If you absolutely cannot get to safety, try to stay away from open fields, hilltops, tall trees or other tall objects. Go to the lowest place possible, such as a ravine or valley, and squat in a baseball catcher’s position — with your heels touching, ears covered, and head between your knees. Minimize contact with the ground and do NOT lie flat. You should avoid water and anything metal, such as golf clubs or bicycles.

What if I am Driving?

Exit the road or highway you are on and park in a safe location. Stay in the vehicle and turn on emergency flashers until the storm subsides. Avoid touching metal or other surfaces that can conduct electricity.

What if I am Indoors?

You may think that watching television or shopping on-line are good ways to pass the time during a storm, but your best bet is to unplug televisions, computers and any other high-value electronics well before the storm hits. Once the storm begins, do not touch any electrical equipment or cords, including corded phones. It is OK to use cellular or cordless phones during the storm. Be sure to stay away from windows and doors and do not go on porches. Also avoid taking baths or showers during storms.² Water is a conductor of electricity so if a lightning strike hits your house during a storm, it may travel through water and shock you in the bath or shower.

What if My House is Hit by Lightning?

If you think your home has been struck by lightning call 911 immediately and evacuate if you see fire or smoke. You may want to ask your local fire department to check for hot spots in your walls. If you use gas for heating and cooking, contact your gas company or a licensed contractor to conduct a leak test before re-entering your home. Gas system components have been known to sustain punctures as a result of direct or nearby lightning strikes.

Sources: 
¹ NOAA, http://www.lightningsafety.noaa.gov/resources/Lightning_your_home.pdf 
² NOAA's National Weather Service,http://www.srh.noaa.gov/jetstream/lightning/lightning_safety.htm

Identifying Hail Damage to Your Roof

5/18/2016 (Permalink)

Contact SERVPRO if your roof looks like this for assistance, 717-261-0310

Are you aware that during a hail storm more than just your vehicles are potentially vulnerable to damage and future repairs? When hail hits, it can damage the roof or covering of your home as well as other personal property. Although hailstorms can be destructive, the amount of damage can vary greatly. Following are some factors that affect the type and degree of damage that may be impacted by a hailstorm, as well as a guide on how to identify hail damage to different types of shingles and roofing materials.

  • Wind – During a hailstorm, wind direction and wind speed can vary. Changes in wind conditions can affect the location and severity of hail impacts.
  • Size and density – The size of the hailstones can affect the degree of damage, if any, to your property. A hailstone can be as small as a pea, or as large as a softball. Most hailstones do not have smooth edges, which can impact the type of damage they cause.
  • Building materials – Building materials absorb hail impacts differently. For example, hail can cause dings in aluminum siding, gutters or asphalt shingles, whereas it can crack vinyl siding or wood shakes. Alternatively, softball-sized hailstones can be dense enough and strong enough to puncture a roof. Additionally, the age and condition of a roof could affect the degree of damage.
  • Barriers– The position of neighboring structures and natural barriers, like tree cover, landscaping, fences or adjacent homes can reduce the ability of hail to cause damage.

What Does Hail Damage to Your Roof Look Like?

Shingles can react differently when struck by hail. As an example, hail damage to asphalt and composition shingles can look very different than hail damage to wood shingles. It is important to know the different effects of the damage to properly identify whether or not you have roof damage from hail.

Asphalt and Composition Shingles Hail Damage

  • Random damage with no discernable pattern.
  • Hail hits that are black in color.
  • Loss of granules, which may expose the roof felt.
  • Asphalt and/or mat that appears shiny.
  • Hail hits that are soft to the touch, like the bruise on an apple.

Wood Shingles Hail Damage

  • Random damage with no discernable pattern.
  • A split in the shingle that is brown/orange in color.
  • A split in the shingle that has sharp corners and edges.
  • A split in the shingle that has little to no deterioration at the edges.
  • Impact marks or dents along the splits.

There are many other types of damage to shingles that can be mistaken for hail damage. For example, exposure to inclement weather and sunlight makes shingles brittle and gives them an aged appearance. This type of damage is normal wear and tear of shingles, which is sometimes misidentified as hail damage. Other types of normal wear and tear may include blistering, cracking, granule loss, flaking and algae. Manufacturing defects and mechanical imperfections in shingles can also be mistaken for hail damage.

If you believe your home has sustained damage from hail, call your agent or insurance representative to discuss possible next steps.

Hail Protection for Your Home

5/18/2016 (Permalink)

Hail Damage

Hail storms can strike without much warning, leaving you with little time to react. Being prepared in advance — and knowing what to do — can help you stay safe and keep damage to a minimum. Consider signing up for local weather alerts, which deliver warnings when hail storms are approaching your area.

What Is Hail?

Hail is a type of solid precipitation, distinct from, but often confused with sleet. Sleet generally falls in colder temperatures while hail growth is inhibited at very cold temperatures. Hail creation is possible within thunderstorms and is formed when water vapor in updrafts reaches a freezing point. Ice then forms and is suspended in the air by updrafts and falls down to be coated by water again. This process can occur over and over adding many layers to the hailstone. Hailstones can be as small as peas or as large as softballs, and the larger ones can cause injury and serious damage.* The average hailstorm lasts only five minutes, but the damage hailstorms cause totals about $1 billion a year, according to the National Weather Service.

How to Minimize Hail Damage

  • Large hail can shatter windows. Closing the drapes, blinds or window shades can help prevent the wind from blowing broken glass into your home or buildings.
  • Whenever possible, park your vehicles inside a garage or under a carport.
  • Patio and lawn furniture can be dented, broken or even shattered by hail. Move these items indoors or under a covered area when not in use.
  • If you have plans to replace the roof covering on your home or business, consider using impact-resistant material if you live in a hail-prone area. For guidance on making the right choices for roof coverings, visit the Insurance Institute for Business & Home Safety website.
Source:
* Hail Facts, Insurance Institute for Business and Home Safety, 
http://disastersafety.org/wp-content/uploads/Hail-Facts_IBHS.pdf

Flood Damage Prevention

5/18/2016 (Permalink)

Storm Damage, Call SERPVRO 717-261-0310

While fire may be a more common concern among homeowners, your home could in fact be as much as ten times more likely to be damaged by water than by fire.* Significant sources of water damage to one’s property can come from weather-related moisture or flooding, including flooding from heavy rains, flash floods, dam and levee failures, tidal storm surges and mudflows. In addition, new construction of buildings, roads or bridges can alter the flow of water, increasing the potential for flooding.

Living in a high-risk flood zone can increase the likelihood of experiencing a flood, but being outside a high-risk zone does not mean homeowners are safe; flooding is always a possibility due to causes such as heavy rains, snowmelt and spring thaws.

Protecting Your Property Before, During and After a Flood

There are a number of things you can do to help minimize or prevent water damage to your property. Follow these tips to help prepare and recover from potentially costly flood damage.

Before the Flood:

  • Know your properties flood zone risk and evaluate your flood risk with this reference guide from IBHS.
  • Have your furnace, water heater and other permanent equipment elevated above the expected flood levels of your area.
  • Inspect sump pumps and drains regularly to ensure proper operation.
  • If you own a generator, have a licensed electrician provide a transfer switch to your sump pump so you can operate it in the event of flooding.
  • To help prevent sewage backup, have a licensed plumber install an interior or exterior backflow prevention valve.
  • Keep sandbags on hand to help divert unusually high water away from your foundation.
  • In snowy climates, flag drains to avoid plowing snow on top of them.
  • Learn the flood alert signals of your community.
  • Collect emergency building materials if you live in a frequently flooded area. These may include plywood, plastic sheeting, lumber, nails, shovels and sandbags.
  • Plan and practice an evacuation route. Designate a place for family members to meet in the event they become separated.
  • Review with all family members how to shut off utilities in an emergency.
  • Plan a survival kit with important documents, including insurance documents, medications and critical items in the event you need to leave your home.

During the Flood:

  • Listen to a battery-operated radio or television for the latest storm information. If advised to evacuate, shut off all utilities and evacuate immediately.
  • Move to high ground, avoid rising waters and do not walk or drive through any floodwaters.
  • Stay away from downed power lines and electrical wires.

After the Flood:

  • Listen to the radio and do not return home until authorities indicate it is safe to do so.
  • Once allowed back into your home, inspect it for damage. If your property has been damaged, promptly report the loss.
  • Be watchful of snakes that may have found their way into your home.
  • Throw away all food that has come in contact with floodwaters.
  • Remove standing water as quickly as possible, including from your basement. If your basement is flooded, pump out about 1/3 of the water per day to avoid structural damage.
  • Properly dry or remove soaked carpets, padding and upholstery within 24-48 hours after a flood to prevent mold growth. Discard anything that cannot be properly dried.
  • Wash and disinfect all areas that have been flooded. This includes walls, floors, closets and shelves, as well as heating and air-conditioning systems. Do not energize electrical or electronic equipment that may have suffered water damage without first having a qualified electrician inspect and/or test it.
*FloodSmart.gov,https://www.floodsmart.gov/floodsmart/pages/residential_coverage/rc_overview.jsp

How Much Weight can your roof support during a snow storm

1/27/2016 (Permalink)

Snow Removal on Roof

Estimate How Much Weight Your Roof Can Support

  • Unless the roof structure is damaged or decayed, most residential roofs, regardless of the location of the house, should be able to support 20 lb per square foot of snow before they become stressed.
  • In some areas of New England and in mountainous areas throughout the United States, snow loads used in home design may be considerably higher and the roofs may be able to resist a greater depth of snow.
  • If you live in an area known for lots of snow, you can probably check with your building department to find out if higher loads were used at the time your home was built.

Estimate How Much the Snow on Your Roof Weighs Using These Guidelines from IBHS

Fresh snow: 10–12 inches of new snow is equal to one inch of water, or about 5 lb per square foot of roof space, so you could have up to 4 feet of new snow before the roof will become stressed.

Packed snow: 3–5 inches of old snow is equal to one inch of water, or about 5 lb per square foot of roof space, so anything more than 2 feet of old snow could be too much for your roof to handle.

Total accumulated weight: 2 feet of old snow and 2 feet of new snow could weigh as much as 60 lb per square foot of roof space, which is beyond the typical snow load capacity of most roofs.

Ice: 1 inch of ice equals 1 foot of of fresh snow.

More Infromation: https://disastersafety.org/ibhs-risks-freezing-weather/prevent-roof-collapse-homes/

2016 Blizzard over 30 inches in Franklin County PA

1/27/2016 (Permalink)

SERVPRO after the storm.

During January 2016 the Franklin County PA area experineced a record breaking snow fall. Chambersburg had over 32 inches for a weekend storm named Jonas. 

Flooding In Chambersburg PA

6/30/2015 (Permalink)

One of the high tech moisture meter's we use to detect water.

This week SERVPRO of Chambersburg has been performing several water restorations due to the heavy rain causing basements to flood. Although a home may have never had water due to rain before does not mean it's not possible. Some homes we have provided services to never had a ground water intrusion for 20+ years. 

What is a typical process when your home is affected by weather and causes water to intrude your home? 

Any water that enters the home from outside water, such as rain is considered contaminated water and all pours material is has make contact with should be removed and hard surfaces should be cleaned. 

Why? Because the contaminates in the soils outside are unknowned. Is there chemicals, animal feces, fertilizer that can be contaminating the water. 

Call SERVPRO if you experience any water intrusion to your home!