Recent Storm Damage Posts

Storm Damage Resources!

8/19/2022 (Permalink)

We have all dealt with storm damage in the past, and since we live in an area affected by hurricanes, we will probably deal with them again in the future.  We all know what to do in order to prepare for a hurricane, but what do we do after the storm has passed?  It is just as important to have a post-storm plan, as one before.

Here are a few things to do immediately after the storm has passed and it is safe to do so.

  1. Before you clean up, take pictures and videos of all of the damage, inside and out.
  2. Start removing anything that is wet or holding water, followed by debris from your home.
  3. Have your insurance policy and contact information ready to go so that you can contact them right away.  
  4. Start making any repairs that you can in order to stop future damage.

Remember that if a storm does damage to your property, it probably did to many others as well.  Get in touch with your insurance company as quickly as possible to get the claim started.    We all remember events in the past where it took weeks to get someone out to look at the damage.  Having a plan for after the storm can help keep you on a track to getting back to normal as quickly as possible.  The team at SERVPRO of West El Paso is here to help.  Give them a call at (915) 234-2614.

3 Things To Avoid After a Flood

7/18/2022 (Permalink)

How To Handle Flood Damage

When storms send floodwater into your West El Paso home, you don't always know what to do. When is it safe to return to your house? Can you start the cleanup on your own? How you handle a flood will depend on the severity of the damage. It can be helpful to call about storm damage services right after the storm has left your area. You should also try to avoid doing the following:

1. Walking Into Standing Water

Did you know that 6 inches of moving water can cause you to lose your footing? Because even shallow waters can be dangerous, you should avoid walking into any standing water. Your flooded home may be full of stagnant water, but you should still avoid going into it. If the electricity is on, the water could be charged. Stormwater could contain dangerous contaminants, too.

2. Waiting To Schedule a Cleanup

Do you want to try to tackle the water damage on your own? Unless you know how to effectively remove flooding and humidity from your house, you should turn to a professional. The sooner you can schedule your cleanup, the better it will be for your home. If you wait too long, you may have increased mold growth in your space.

3. Returning to Your Home Too Soon

While you want your life to return to normal, you need to make sure the flood water is completely gone before you return. Going home too soon can make it harder for the cleanup crew to properly remove excess humidity. The cleanup may require building materials to be replaced, which can leave your home dusty. If you wait until the entire process is finished, you can return to a more normal life right when you move back in.

Storm flood water may cause you to leave your home until the damage can be fixed. Taking the wrong steps after this type of flood can make the restoration process harder than it has to be, so remember what not to do.

2022's Hurricane Survival Guide

6/3/2022 (Permalink)

Get ready, Texas, hurricane season officially starts June 1 and runs through November 30.

According to the NOAA, we will be looking at another above-average season. Whether you are a long-time resident of Louisiana or a brand new transplant it is always important to be reminded of the impacts of hurricanes and how you can prepare. 

Before the storm If you were here for last year's storm there's a good chance you already have a hurricane kit. If not, start gathering your supplies! Ensure that each person (pets included) has nonperishable food and water for at least seven days. Your kit should also include flashlights, a radio, cash, a first-aid kit, and medicine at a minimum. Due to large shortages at this point in time it is imperative you do not wait until the last minute to gather these supplies. 

You should also consider inspecting your shutters, roof, and fences in case repairs or replacements are needed and check that your policies are current and if you have sufficient coverage for hurricanes with your homeowner's insurance. Due to the constant construction in our area, it is also important to check for updated hurricane evacuation routes. 

While the storm is coming fuel up your car, charge your power banks, withdraw cash, and buy supplies you still need. Start prepping your home by bringing your patio furniture, pets, and potted plants inside. Tie-down anything that could become airborne and if you have a boat, secure it properly. Start monitoring the local news for updates from the National Hurricane Center, your local National Weather Service office, and local officials on the storm’s track, what type of hazards to expect, and if there are any evacuation orders in effect. Get sandbags, find a safe place to park your car, put your shutters up, and don’t leave trash on the curb. If you don’t have shutters or hurricane-proof windows, board up your windows with 5/8-inch plywood. 

During the storm and after Stay away from windows and doors and don't leave the house. As tempting as it is to watch mother nature do her thing, do not go outside. Once officials have said it is safe to do so, report property damage and power outages.  Monitor for curfew and boil-water-order notices. If you want to use a generator, make sure to keep it at least 20 feet from a home, including your neighbors, to prevent carbon monoxide poisoning. If you plan to go out be careful on the roads since there might be downed trees, fallen power lines, traffic lights that aren’t working, and debris. Some roads might also be flooded. Reminder, do not drive or walk through standing water.

If your home or business experiences water, wind, fire, or mold damage, give the professionals a call. We are your storm damage experts! 

Your Generator Maintenance Guide | SERVPRO of West El Paso

11/22/2021 (Permalink)

With the crazy weather patterns in El Paso the past year, it is important to be prepared in the event of another disaster. We recommend having a generator handy in the event the storm impacts last days on end. In order to ensure your generator is functioning properly take these maintenance tips into consideration. 

The typical life expectancy for a generator is between 20,000 and 30,000 hours, serving a crucial role while waiting for a storm restoration company to come to your business. 

Weekly
You are going to need to perform small maintenance tasks every week. These include:

  • Running the engine
  • Checking for alarms or warnings
  • Ensuring adequate fuel levels for an emergency
  • Setting the engine to auto mode
  • Checking that the circuit breaker is closed
  • Ensuring there are no leaks

Monthly
On a monthly basis, you will need to spend more time checking fluid levels, such as the coolant and oil. You should also check the battery to ensure you are ready for a disaster.

Bi-Annual
You are going to want to check the thermal protection levels every six months. At the same time, inspect the drive belts to ensure they have the proper tension and are in good condition.

Annual
A certified technician will need to come out every year and perform crucial tasks, such as changing the engine oil, fuel filter, air filter, and spark plugs. If any extra maintenance is needed, like a coolant system flush, your technician will perform these items at your annual service. 

Taking precautions like this can have many benefits for your home or business. The primary one is that you put off replacing your equipment longer. If you are looking to push the maximum number of hours and avoid generator problems, you need to consider required preventative maintenance.

For any storm related damage, call the storm professionals at (915) 234-2614.

Did Your Ceiling Collapse During a Storm?

11/15/2021 (Permalink)

With the changing weather patterns in West El Paso, more and more natural disasters are taking place. Whether it is another Texas Freeze, or a rain storm, you should know how to handle if your ceiling collapses. 

An incident like this is absolutely devastating but SERVPRO of West El Paso is here to see you through to the other side.

Safety is most important when a ceiling collapses. Remove your family and pets as far away from the collapse as possible.

No matter when disaster hits, SERVPRO of West El Paso is here to help 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, every single day of the year.  Rain or shine, big or small -- we are here to help make your loss "Like it never even happened."

Do You Have a Funky Smell In Your Home After a Storm?

10/25/2021 (Permalink)

The water damage from a natural disaster in your home often comes with odors and mold growth that can be hard to find. If you suspect you have mold but don't see any growth, we recommend finding an industrial hygienist who can find out what mold may or may not be in your home. Other measures you can take to help with the funk are below:

Air It Out

Open all doors and windows to allow air to circulate in your residence.  This should help dissipate any lingering smells that remain and will also facilitate the drying of the affected areas. 

Dry the Wet Areas 

You may install dehumidifiers to speed up the drying process.  Removing moisture from porous and absorbent surfaces such as carpet and upholstery can greatly reduce the chance of foul aromas remaining after the flood and can mitigate the appearance of mold. 

Deodorize Your Home 

There are natural methods that you can utilize to expedite the deodorizing process in your house.  Baking soda sprinkled into carpets or other absorbent surfaces can be vacuumed up, greatly with getting rid of foul odors.  On less porous surfaces, vinegar applied liberally can aid in combating persistent smells. 

Keep an Eye Out for Mold 

As with any area that has had prolonged exposure to moisture, mold growth can be a threat that, if not addressed immediately can become a huge problem.  It is imperative that proper steps are taken to ensure that mold and spores do not have the opportunity to spread in your home. 

Sewage

Sewage loss can lead to your home being contaminated by sewage contents when floodwater finds its way past your threshold.  This can leave behind an overpowering smell even after the moisture has been removed due to the bacteria in the water. These horrendous smells often cannot be removed by household cleaners and require the services of a professional flood restoration company. 

Eliminating odors can be a tricky thing, so give us a call at (915) 234-2614 and leave the restoration to us!

Typical Standby Generator Maintenance

8/20/2021 (Permalink)

Typical Standby Generator Maintenance

With the crazy weather patterns in El Paso the past year, it is important to be prepared in the event of another disaster. We recommend having a generator handy in the event the storm impacts last days on end. In order to ensure your generator is functioning properly take these maintenance tips into consideration. 

The typical life expectancy for a generator is between 20,000 and 30,000 hours, serving a crucial role while waiting for a storm restoration company to come to your business. 

Weekly
You are going to need to perform small maintenance tasks every week. These include:

  • Running the engine
  • Checking for alarms or warnings
  • Ensuring adequate fuel levels for an emergency
  • Setting the engine to auto mode
  • Checking that the circuit breaker is closed
  • Ensuring there are no leaks

Monthly
On a monthly basis, you will need to spend more time checking fluid levels, such as the coolant and oil. You should also check the battery to ensure you are ready for a disaster.

Bi-Annual
You are going to want to check the thermal protection levels every six months. At the same time, inspect the drive belts to ensure they have the proper tension and are in good condition.

Annual
A certified technician will need to come out every year and perform crucial tasks, such as changing the engine oil, fuel filter, air filter, and spark plugs. If any extra maintenance is needed, like a coolant system flush, your technician will perform these items at your annual service. 

Taking precautions like this can have many benefits for your home or business. The primary one is that you put off replacing your equipment longer. If you are looking to push the maximum number of hours and avoid generator problems, you need to consider required preventative maintenance.

For any storm related damage, call the storm professionals at (915) 234-2614.

Preventing Storm Damage | SERVPRO of West El Paso

7/7/2021 (Permalink)

Rain showers can lead to flooding conditions in El Paso, TX. Follow our tips to help reduce any possible flooding to your home or business.

Watch for Pooling Water 

As it rains look for places around your property where water pools, and channel it away from buildings. Make sure gutters and downspouts are clear of debris and they are directing water as intended.

Maintain Sump Pump 

If you have a sump pump, check to be sure it is operational before water starts rising. Consider a back-up generator to ensure your pump works when you need it most. 

Raise Storage Goods 

Try to keep as few items as possible off the floor. Even small floods can cause large amounts of damage to your items. 

Shut Your Power

As rising water approaches the level of electrical outlets, you risk having a live current flow through all the water. Cut the power if you can safely do so without standing in water. Otherwise, evacuate and contact an electrician.

Consider Flood Insurance 

Homeowner's insurance will not cover floods; so it is recommended to purchase it separately. Flood insurance will provide you the means to respond to a catastrophic flooding event. 

Preparation is Key

Prepare in advance with a SERVPRO® Emergency Ready Profile® (ERP). Our convenient mobile app stores all your utility and emergency response information in one place, so you can access this information from your smartphone or computer.

When a flood happens, you need to act fast to dry out any wet items, particularly structural materials like walls and flooring. Call SERVPRO® of West El Paso to extract water and make it “Like it never even happened.” 

Severe Storm Prep Kits | SERVPRO of West El Paso

6/2/2021 (Permalink)

Hurricanes are not a rare event in West El Paso, TX. It is important to have “Stay” and “Go” Kits for your entire family. Gather essential items and store them in a safe area with easy access. Each families kit may look different based on each family's needs. Make special allowances for pets, babies and the elderly and update them as your family grows. 

“Stay” Kit: Place in a waterproof bin-

  • Food; Rotate non-perishable food
  • Manual can opener  
  • Water; one gallon per person, per day, for three days
  • First Aid Kit
  • Flashlight and extra Batteries
  • Shelter(Plastic sheeting, duct-tape, Tent, Sleeping bag/ Blanket)
  • Phone Chargers
  • Emergency Weather Radio
  • Matches 
  • Fans that don't need electricity 
  • Entertainment that doesn't need electricity 

“Go” Kit: Place in Duffle bag or backpack

Walking or Driving? Make a Car Kit.

  • Food, Three-day supply
  • Manual can opener
  • Mess kit
  • Matches in plastic slide-lock bag
  • Water; one gallon per person, per day for three days
  • First Aid Kit
  • Sewing Kit
  • Swiss Army knife or folding pocket tools
  • Work gloves/Tools
  • Flashlight and extra Batteries
  • Shelter (Plastic sheeting, duct-tape, tent, sleeping bag/ blanket)
  • Phone Chargers
  • Emergency Weather Radio
  • Maps, sealed in slide-lock plastic bags
  • Masks, gloves, hand sanitizer for whole family

SERVPRO of West El Paso is a 24/7 365 disaster mitigation company. If your home or business suffers damage ranging from minor to severe we can be on-site within hours to help. Call us today for more information! 

Eliminating Moisture Avoids Mold After a Flood

11/11/2020 (Permalink)

El Paso water damage can take your home by storm, let SERVPRO help. 

West El Paso can experience storms and floods throughout the year. Local residents rely on SERVPRO of West El Paso to be responsive to remove floodwater, debris, and any damaged materials from your property.

SERVPRO of West El Paso has been on-site for many man-made and nature-made floods. We constantly have equipment ready to be able to respond to these types of emergencies. We know just how damaging flood water can be to your home, your home’s contents, and that is why we have a rapid response team. 

Removing Moisture

West El Paso has conditions that allow for mold growth when there is moisture present. SERVPRO removes damaged material along with any standing water present. There are a few categories of water, and SERVPRO knows how to deal with all of them. Some materials retain more water than others or the area is harder to reach. We are able to check on moisture levels with high-tech equipment that we have to ensure complete dryness. Our equipment includes thermal imaging cameras which can show what areas are still holding moisture even if they appear to be dry.

Call SERVPRO of West El Paso at 915.234.2614 for 24/7 service. We proudly serve West El Paso and the surrounding areas. We're Faster To Any Size Disaster.

We Handle Storms Like Pros

11/10/2020 (Permalink)

Our SERVPRO® West El Paso Rapid Response Team Can Help You With Storm Damage In Your Property

Even though storm season is wrapping up, a nearby road overflow can cause significant issues in the ground levels of your property. Heavy rainfall results in sewer systems backing up and overflowing with contaminated Black Water. Due to the potentially harmful effects of Black Water, it is essential to hire a professional, qualified technician to help repair and restore your property safely. Indeed, many of your possessions can be salvaged by using professional cleaning equipment promptly.

Where there is Flood Damage in SERVPRO® of West El Paso homes, the likelihood of contaminants being spread around the home is high. In the circumstances, it is not uncommon for our technicians to wear Hazmat suits to protect themselves from pathogens during the cleanup operation. We may also have to remove sections of drywall to clean in and behind walls, floors, and fittings. Left behind debris is not only odorous but have the potential to be harmful if not dealt with thoroughly.

For owners who find themselves in this position, it is only natural to immediately assume the worst, especially where personal possessions are concerned. Here at SERVPRO® of West El Paso we always work with a restore over replace mentality. Unlike other providers, our services are geared toward salvaging as much as possible. We enable our technicians to achieve this by providing them with state-of-the-art cleaning equipment and technology.

We can assess items immediately on site to decide which possessions are salvageable and which need disposal. Generally speaking, porous materials absorb black water making them exceptionally difficult to clean; this could include your carpets or curtains. However, where they are valuable fabrics, we can send them to a specialized facility for mechanical cleaning using Esporta washing machines. These equipment are expensive because they are advanced. However, SERVPRO® of West El Paso provides technicians with everything they need to restore items rather than replace them.

Floods are considerable emergencies which is why SERVPRO® of West El Paso training involves a rapid-response unit as well as a 24-hour emergency call line. Our skilled specialists are local to the area and can reach you fast to help mitigate loss and reduce the risk of permanent damage.

In an emergency, contact SERVPRO® West El Paso at (915) 234-2614 for immediate assistance.

Using Technology During a Storm

10/16/2020 (Permalink)

Technology can cause stress and sometimes is more of a burden than helpful. However, in the case of emergencies such as natural disasters, it can be extremely helpful for keeping you updated and letting friends and family know where you are. You more than likely already have the technology in your home to keep you and your family safe during a disaster, so follow these tips to use it effectively!

Remember, always be sure to keep portable charges ready in your emergency kit so you can always access your technology when you need it most.

Social Media for News

Using social media is a great way to get up-to-date news straight to your smartphone. Almost all local and national government has social media pages that are updated regularly, especially during a natural disaster. 

Mark Yourself Safe

Another way to use social media is to mark yourself safe. Facebook offers a feature called Safety Check that allows you to mark yourself safe if you are in the area of a dangerous situation. Marking yourself safe lets friends and family know that although you are in the area of disaster, you are safe. The Red Cross offers a similar feature called Safe & Well which is both an app and website where you can mark yourself as safe for friends and family. 

Use Online Storage

Services like Google Drive and DropBox are a great way to store personal information online in a safe manner. Keeping copies of identification cards, passports, insurance policies, medical records, and pet information is important if your documents get lost in a disaster or you forget them when you are evacuating. You can also access DropBox and Google drive on any computer or phone, just make sure you remember your password!

Create an Emergency READY Profile

SERVPRO of West El Paso offers an Emergency Ready Profile or ERP for free. Creating an ERP will help prepare your property or business in the event of a disaster.  Creating this profile will help prevent interruption by having an immediate plan of action and setting SERVPRO® of West El Paso as your main point of contact in the case of an emergency. We will have all the information on file needed to make sure mitigation and restoration go smoothly. 

SERVPRO of West El Paso should be your first choice for any residential or commercial restoration due to our experience and 24/7/365 service. Contact us today if you are interested in signing up for an ERP or have questions or concerns about a recent property disaster. 

Disabilities and Disasters for West El Paso Residents

8/18/2020 (Permalink)

Many storm surges, earthquakes, fires, and other disasters can happen at a moment’s notice. Keeping your family safe during stressful disasters is a priority and every family should have a plan in place. Mobility, hearing, learning, or seeing disabilities can cause certain families to create extra precautions. Families, individuals with disabilities, and caregivers can all benefit from the below tips on how to stay safe during a West El Paso storm.

Stay Informed

Identifying common disasters in your area and learning how medical, physical, and cognitive needs may affect you or your family member’s ability to respond to each is the first step to disaster preparedness. Take time to learn about your community’s plans for dealing with disasters and sign up for warning and alerts to remain notified at all times.

Preparing

The main factors you or your family should be aware of is who you can count on, where you can go, and what to bring. By creating a personal network of people who are able to help you during a disaster and ways to contact them if communication becomes disrupted can put you at ease.

If evacuation is needed be sure there is a safe space you can go to, and how you can get there if you need specialized transportation. By putting all prescriptions and important documents in an easily accessible place makes grabbing and going more efficient in case of an evacuation. If you have medical equipment make sure where you plan to go you can bring the equipment with you. If not, where can you keep this equipment in the interim so it does not get damaged?

Besides your prescriptions, documents, and equipment, other items to keep in your emergency kit can be: 

  • Flashlight
  • Radio
  • Water
  • First aid kit
  • Non-perishable foods
  • Cash
  • Batteries

If you have a service animal make a separate kit for them including: 

  • Minimum 72-hour supply of bottled water and pet food
  • Portable water and food bowls
  • Paper towels 
  • Medications and veterinarian info
  • Medical records 
  • Leash and collar
  • Blanket and toy
  • Plastic bags
  • Bandages
  • Up-to-date ID tag and recent photo 
  • Copy of the pet’s license

Last but not least, practice your emergency plan. Make sure you know exactly what to do and where to go in the event of an emergency. As always, SERVPRO® of West El Paso is here to assist with any emergency needs in your home 24/7/365. 

Take Shelter if a Summer Storm Catches You Off-Guard | SERVPRO® of West El Paso

7/16/2020 (Permalink)

lighting striking hillside during storm at night Have you been affected by a storm event? SERVPRO of West El Paso is available 24/7 and ready to assist you with any storm damage.

Enjoying a beautiful summer day outside is a great way to spend an afternoon, but it is important that you are always aware of the dangers that a thunderstorm can lead to. While that may be the furthest thing from your mind on a clear day, storms can feed off of the heat and humidity synonymous with summer, popping up suddenly and causing danger.

These tips can help you stay safe even if a storm catches you off-guard.

Stay Safe Even if a Storm Catches You Off-Guard

Know your options for shelter. When a storm is heading your way and you are safely at home or in another secure location, you can wait out the danger in an ideal way. However, not every situation will work out this way, so it is important to know how to safely take shelter in your vehicle as well, just in case.

Practice electrical safety. There is always a possibility that lightning will strike the ground if thunder is in the area. Even if you are in a building, lightning can pose risks due to power surges, which ruin electronics and can cause sparks. The best thing to do is unplug everything that is nearby if you know a storm is coming—but if not, installing surge protectors at home and at the office is a good permanent solution.

Avoid direct contact with concrete. It is commonly assumed that a concrete structure will be your best bet for a storm shelter, but it is important to take precautions even then. Concrete will often be reinforced with metal materials, making it sturdy yet hazardous if lightning strikes. If you are sheltering in a concrete building, avoid directly touching floors or walls so you do not receive any electrical charge.

Stay indoors for at least 30 minutes. If you have been interrupted by a storm as you go about your day, you will understandably want to get back to what you were doing as quickly as possible—but because of how far lightning has been known to travel from storm clouds, it is recommended that you put a pause on all outdoor activities for at least 30 minutes after you hear the last clap of thunder.

If your home sustains damage due to a storm, you can count on us to help. Contact us at any hour to learn more about our storm restoration process.

Being Weather Alert and Prepared for Severe Storms | SERVPRO® of West El Paso

6/16/2020 (Permalink)

person on a white tablet using weather alert app If your home has been impacted by storm damage, SERVPRO of West El Paso will respond quickly to assist in any repairs.

While storms happen quite frequently across the globe, the dangers they can cause is something we should always be aware of. Storms that carry an electrical charge (characterized by thunder and lightning) can bring severe damages to areas in their pathway.

It is important that you are prepared ahead of time for severe storms by researching the definition of weather notices, obtaining emergency equipment and getting a reliable source of weather information to make sure you are always informed and as prepared as possible.

Research the Definition of Weather Notices

Paying attention to your local weather notices is always a good idea for staying informed, but when it comes to the alerts issued regarding severe weather, you should be certain you know what they mean. There is a difference between a watch and a warning, and reacting properly to each is a key part of staying safe. Watches mean to stay alert and tuned in, as the conditions are favorable for a storm to develop. When a warning is issued, you should seek cover immediately as there is a storm on the ground that is actively impacting the area.

Obtain Emergency Equipment

It is always a good idea to make sure you have emergency equipment in your home, especially if you may find yourself in the path of severe weather. Flashlights, extra power sources, nonperishable food and plenty of water are all good things to keep, in addition to a first-aid kit. These should be stored wherever your home’s safest area is—generally a spot away from windows with few external walls.

Get a Reliable Source of Weather Information

For most of us, we depend on our cell phones to keep us informed about nearly everything happening, but during a severe weather event, you should make sure you have another way to receive information. Cell phone reception can be knocked out, as can power, making phones less than reliable when it comes to getting pertinent updates. Consider keeping a weather radio in your emergency kit so you can always be informed.

If your home has been impacted by storm damage, we are here for you. You can contact us 247 to get a quick response to your home’s damages.