Recent Storm Damage Posts

Is Sewage Backup Covered by Insurance? Understanding Your Coverage Options

6/6/2023 (Permalink)

water damaged floors Water and sewer damage can be messy. Take immediate action to minimize damage.

Sewage backups can cause significant damage to a home, and many homeowners may be left wondering whether this type of damage is covered by insurance. The answer, unfortunately, is not always straightforward. In this blog, we'll explore whether sewage backup is covered by insurance and what steps homeowners can take to protect themselves.

Sewage Backup and Homeowners Insurance

Sewage backup is not typically covered by standard homeowners insurance policies. However, many insurance companies offer optional endorsements or riders that can provide coverage for sewage backups. These endorsements may cover damage to personal property, as well as the cost of cleaning up and repairing the damage caused by the backup.

It's important to note that these endorsements can vary in terms of the amount of coverage they provide and the cost of the endorsement. Homeowners should review their policy carefully and speak with their insurance agent to determine whether they have this coverage and what it entails.

Causes of Sewage Backup

Sewage backups can be caused by a number of factors, including clogged pipes, tree roots, heavy rain, and aging sewage systems. In some cases, backups can be prevented with regular maintenance, such as cleaning out drains and pipes, and avoiding flushing non-degradable items down the toilet.

Steps to Take After a Sewage Backup

If you experience a sewage backup in your home, it's important to take immediate action to minimize damage and prevent health hazards. Here are some steps to take:

  • Turn off the water supply to the affected area.
  • Avoid contact with the sewage and wear protective gear, such as gloves and boots.
  • Ventilate the affected area by opening windows and using fans.
  • Remove any standing water and debris.
  • Clean and disinfect all affected surfaces and items, such as carpets, furniture, and walls.
  • Contact a professional restoration company for assistance with cleanup and repairs.

Sewage backups can be a messy and potentially hazardous problem for homeowners. While they may not be covered by standard homeowners insurance policies, optional endorsements or riders may provide coverage. Homeowners should review their policy carefully and speak with their insurance agent to determine whether they have this coverage and what it entails. If you experience a sewage backup, it's important to take immediate action to minimize damage.

3 Types of Storm Damage

1/23/2023 (Permalink)

Fallen tree on a red car. There are a few different types of damage that can happen as a result of severe weather conditions.

When you hear about a storm, it can be hard to know what kind of damage it caused. Was the house damaged? Were any windows broken? What kinds of repairs will be needed? Luckily, most storms don't cause too much damage—or at least not that much that can't be repaired with some time and money. But depending on where you live and how strong your home is built, there are a few different types of damage that can happen as a result of severe weather conditions.

Roof Damage

Roof damage is the most common type of damage that occurs during a storm. Roofs can be damaged by strong winds, lightning, or hail. If your roof is damaged, you may experience water damage inside of your building as well as structural problems with your home. Repairs can be expensive and take time to complete, so it's important to take precautions against this type of damage before it happens.

Water Damage

Another common type of storm damage is water damage. Water damage can occur from rain, snow, ice, or wind. When this happens to your home or business it can lead to mold and mildew growth. The wood in your house will begin to rot. Also, electrical problems may occur because of water getting inside wires causing them to short out and spark causing fires.

Water damage after a storm can be a major problem for homeowners. Heavy rains and strong winds can also cause flooding, which can lead to water damage to the home's structure, as well as to personal belongings. Water damage can also be caused by broken pipes, faulty plumbing, and leaks in the roof. It is important to address water damage as soon as possible to prevent further damage and to protect the health and safety of the occupants.

Wind Damage

Wind damage can be caused by a wide range of weather conditions. The type and extent of wind damage depend on the strength of the wind, its duration, and its direction. Wind can cause structural damage to homes, buildings, and other structures.

Strong winds can cause damage to the roof, siding, and windows of a home, as well as to trees and other structures on the property. Wind damage can also cause power outages, which can be a major inconvenience and may even pose a safety risk if the outage lasts for an extended period of time.

If you suspect you may have wind damage, check for broken trees or branches. Check your yard for any signs that trees were uprooted or knocked over by strong winds.

When your home or business is damaged by a storm, give SERVPRO of Grosse Point a call. We will get your home back to normal as quickly as possible after a storm. We will focus on all the heavy lifting, so you can worry about what matters most – getting back to normal!

Roof Damage Requires Temporary Remediation

6/5/2022 (Permalink)

Missing shingles on a roof After a storm, inspect your roof for any signs of wind damage.

Once a heavy storm in Detroit, MI, subsides, it’s time to assess the property for any issues, especially roof damage. Any holes or exposed areas may quickly lead to other issues, further adding stress and cost. Since time is of the essence, inspecting the roof for damage and taking temporary mitigation measures is necessary.

Signs of Wind Damage

Homeowners should take safety precautions before getting a roof. In most cases, it is best to call a professional roofing company. It will have the expertise to find damage and the equipment to safely navigate the roof. Even if you can’t get on your roof, these signs indicate there is roof damage that needs to be quickly addressed:

  • Loose or missing shingles
  • Staining on shingles
  • Warping or curling
  • Damaged fascia or soffits
  • Tears or cracks on roofing components
  • Crooked chimney
  • Cracked skylight
  • Tree or branches on the roof

Prevent Secondary Damage

If you can tell that the damage is severe, along with filing a claim, the next call should be to a professional water and storm damage restoration company. In most cases, your insurance provider will require you to secure the property. That will mean boarding up visibly weakened areas and tarping over any holes or large cracks. These steps are necessary to minimize the chances of secondary damage, which the insurance provider will not cover. Board-up and tarps services are typically part of the package when relying on a restoration company to return your home back to how it was before the storm. Although temporary, they will help keep out additional water, pest and potential vandals.
When your home sustains roof damage, it is not something that can be overlooked. Taking immediate action to determine the issues and get temporary mitigation in place may prevent added expenses and time spent on repairs.

Information Worth Knowing About Hurricane Insurance

4/20/2022 (Permalink)

Blue tarp on roof Use tarps to cover up gaps in roofs and windows so that there is no further exposure to the elements.

What You Should Know About Hurricane Insurance

Companies at risk for hurricane damage need storm insurance. Having a policy in place provides a financial cushion for hiring a commercial storm renovation service. Here's a quick guide to some essential knowledge regarding these policies.

Hurricane Insurance Coverage

With most standard building insurance agreements, you are covered for the devastation caused by:

  • Fires
  • Vandalism
  • Windstorms
  • Burglaries

Hurricanes are typically excluded. Riders regarding these and other coverage exceptions, such as earthquakes and floods, may be added for an additional fee depending on your location.

Hurricane Insurance Claims

After a hurricane, contact your insurance company and state that you wish to file a claim. Ask how long it will take for a storm insurance adjuster to arrive in Grosse Pointe Woods, MI, to assess the damage.
Take photos and make videos of all damage. Compose a list of what has been destroyed and compile receipts for purchases of compromised items. Place all relevant documents into one folder and store them in a place away from damage and leaks. Save ruined valuables until the adjuster has had an opportunity to inspect them. Storm insurance companies are experts at figuring out the overall value of someone's loss.
Inform your insurer if you need immediate repairs, such as removing downed electrical lines. Policy issuers are often willing to send service professionals to claimants' properties on their behalf.
Use tarps to cover up gaps in roofs and windows so that there is no further exposure to the elements. After time passes, mold may develop. Hire a mold inspector to verify the absence of fungal intruders.
Consider hiring a public adjuster to assess the condition of your property. Reports from independent authorities have the potential to help you negotiate a better settlement.
Storm insurance is necessary for companies that are vulnerable to strong winds and precipitation. Make sure your policy covers you in case a hurricane comes through your area and wreaks havoc.

Storm Damage Restoration for Commercial Buildings

4/8/2022 (Permalink)

dehumidifier in a hallway, floor removed. Storm damage in Harper Woods, MI.

Commercial Damage Restoration Process

After a storm causes damage at a building in Harper Woods, MI, a commercial property owner should immediately pursue mitigation followed by restoration. Mitigation may start with water extraction followed by decisions regarding which materials to tear out or disinfect. Learn more about the major stages of the commercial damage restoration process.

Eliminate Standing Water

When the manager or owner of a building finds water standing in any part of the structure, it is a good idea to make arrangements for extraction. The following forms of damage are more likely to occur the longer that water remains in a building:

  • Degrading building materials
  • Saturation ruining contents
  • Formation of mold

A roof leak may start out as Category Two water damage and degrade as water works its way through building materials or is left standing. Pumping out water within 24 hours may make it possible to salvage more materials and prevent mold.

Remove Ruined Materials

Some materials are destroyed by prolonged exposure to water. Insulation, drywall and carpet may be ruined by saturation. It is important to tear out materials that are difficult to disinfect, as these substances can support mold growth.

Disinfection and Drying

Once standing water and any materials ruined by water have been removed from a structure, it is time to promote drying. After several days of running air movers, dehumidifiers or fans, storm restoration should be able to proceed.
A general sense of the steps that restoration professionals will take in response to storm damage can give a property or business owner a clearer sense of what to expect during this process. The removal of standing water or measures to tear out damaged materials are procedural steps. Restoration can only proceed after the affected part of a structure has dried. The longer materials stay wet, the higher the risk of a mold at a building in Harper Woods, MI.

Landscape for Your Property's Protection

1/23/2022 (Permalink)

Two hands holding mulch Use heavy mulch in your garden.

Options That Can Help Storm- Proof Your Front Or Backyard

It's a fact. Extreme weather events have accelerated according to the government's National Climate Assessment. More than an occasional rainstorm, we're experiencing an uptick in the number of powerful hurricanes and dangerous flash floods. For homeowners in Detroit, MI, that can mean outside flooding—with resulting soil erosion, water runoffs and damaged property.
Landscaping professionals use many creative, eco-friendly solutions to stave off outside flooding and preserve residential property. 

1. Swales. Dig a depression (trench) to direct water's flow down a gentle slope to a drain. Line the slope's lowest point with rocks for rain drainage and put in deep-rooting plants along the slope to secure the soil and prevent runoff.

2. Heavy Mulch. Use heavy, man-made, hardwood mulch in your garden beds to hold the soil in place.

3. Rain Garden. Create a low-maintenance rain garden to provide space for water to pool during downpours. In the garden's center, bed plants with high water tolerance. As the surrounding plantings drain after rain, the middle section remains submerged, permitting the water to slowly reenter the soil.

4. Green Roof. Install an increasingly affordable green rooftop to absorb storm water. Beyond ecological benefits, a "living roof" improves insulation, lowers utility costs and beautifies the environment.

5. Draining Driveways. Add rain drainage to either side of your driveway pavement, or eliminate the asphalt or concrete altogether and use gravel paving to neutralize rain storm flooding.

6. Divert Rain Spouts. Invest in a downspout diverter to direct water away from your home's foundation and protect it from fissures and cracks.
Outside flooding can be mitigated, or avoided entirely, with good landscape planning. Unfortunately, there are instances where flooding occurs indoors. When facing significant interior water damage, it's in your home's best interest to rely on water damage experts for professional cleaning and restoration services.

The 4 Worst Types of Winter Storm Damage

1/18/2022 (Permalink)

Drywall removed, plastic barrier hanging (concept of mold contaainment) Storm damage to a Grosse Pointe Shores, MI residential home.

Four Damages a Winter Storm Can Cause

Adverse winter weather can cause severe damage to your home in Grosse Pointe Shores, MI. Low temperatures, heavy snow, and high winds can all lead to problems that require repairs or restoration. Find out more about the four worst types of damage a winter storm can cause.

1. Roof Collapse

A layer of dry snow three inches deep can add up to 10 pounds per square foot of additional weight to a roof. Three inches of wet snow can weigh as much as 60 pounds per square foot. A blizzard can build up far more weight. A roof collapse threatens the safety of all inhabitants and can lead to extensive water damage. A cave-in calls for evacuation and extensive roof repairs or a rebuild.

2. Ice Damming

Ice dams form when snow melts due to an unevenly warm roof and refreezes near the eaves. This may cause water to seep under shingles and lead to roof damage, water damage, and mold in the attic or insulation. Keep your attic cool, well-insulated, and ventilated and the drainage system clear to prevent damming after a winter storm.

3. Pipe Bursts

Frozen pipes can burst and cause major water damage. Allow faucets to trickle and heat your home to a safe temperature – no lower than 55 degrees Fahrenheit – even when you are out of town.

4. Undermined Doors and Windows

Winter weather can wear down doors, windows, and weather stripping. This causes cold drafts to enter and allows heated air to escape. A door may even blow open when you are away and lead to water damage and an increased risk of intrusion. Maintain the condition of exterior doors and windows.

All of these events can cause thousands of dollars in damage. If any part of your home succumbs to a blizzard or adverse weather, rely on winter storm damage restoration specialists in Grosse Pointe Shores, MI.