Recent Storm Damage Posts

What to look for after a rain storm damage.

3/8/2021 (Permalink)

Large tree leaning on a corner of a house Tree damage to a property.

After a big storm hits our community it is incredibly important to check for damages to your property. Storms bring heavy rain, strong winds, debris, fallen trees and/or branches, and may also cause landslides around your area. Checking for any damages done to your property is essential to keep any secondary damages from occurring later.

Some of the places that we suggest that you look into are listed below from previous storm damages that we have taken care of before:

Interior Damage

  • Mold
  • Any bubbling in the walls
  • Crawlspaces
  • Flooring near doors

Window Damage

  • Shattered Windows
  • Cracks or Holes
  • Broken Panes
  • Damaged Frames

Roof Damage

  • Missing Shingles on Roof
  • Cracked or Broken Tiles, Slates or Concrete Shingles
  • Debris collected in Gutters or Down Spouts
  • Dents to Vents, Gutters or Flashings
  • Leaks in Roof or Ceilings

Exterior Damage

  • Cracks and Splitting to Siding or Stucco
  • Holes and Breaks to Siding or Stucco
  • Chipping or Discoloration to Paint
  • Metal Siding completely ripped off

What is the purpose of a flood cut?

3/8/2021 (Permalink)

Door cover and taped up with plastic and a two feet flood cut on the right side wall 2 ft flood cut

For clean small water leaks, only the visibly damaged area may need to be removed to prevent further moisture damage. Unfortunately, flood waters or exceptionally large water damages require extra care, which will likely mean a flood cut for the reasons listed below:

After a very large water damage there may be a good chance of mold growth. With flood waters sewage, chemicals and other bacteria can easily be picked up in the flowing waters.
The large amount of water that has likely worked its way up the walls can create a welcoming environment for mold growth. Even though it may not be visible, the moisture in the drywall and other materials create an environment that the mold needs to grow in.
There is insulation behind the walls in many homes, which cannot be properly dried. If left as is, it will no longer provide its designated insulated properties.

If your home has a very large substantial amount of water damage, the best bet is to use a flood cut. This will help you determine how much of the material needs to be removed, as well as will help the area dry out better.

Landslide damage to your property.

3/5/2021 (Permalink)

Muddy Livingroom with boxes in the middle of the room Landslide Damage

What to do if a landslide occurs near you.

Rainy seasons have been upon us and may continue sometimes through out the year. The priority in any weather event is to ensue everyone’s safety. If you end up experiencing property damage after a landslide due to wind or rainstorm you can trust that SERVPRO of San Luis Obispo can handle it.

After a landslide happens here are some important details:

  • Keep away from the slide area. Additional landslides may occur which is dangerous.
  • Report broken utility lines and damaged roadways and railways to appropriate authorities. Reporting potential hazards will get the utilities turned off as quickly as possible, preventing further hazard and injury.
  • Allow for the building foundation, chimney, and surrounding land for damages by trained professionals.
  • If the landslide caused damaged to your property take photos of all the affected areas as this will help any insurance claims, you submit to your insurance company.

If you need any help with damages done to your property by a landslide please give SERVPRO of San Luis Obispo a call at 805-541-1271.

Flash Floods in San Luis Obsipo

2/19/2021 (Permalink)

room with partial carpet removed with kids furniture in the picture affected with flood water Flash Flood Damages

In the central coast we have had our fair share of thunderstorms. However, it is important to be aware of how they can be dangerous, and how you can be prepared. Here at SERVPRO of San Luis Obispo, we wanted to share some vital information on how thunderstorms and dangerous flash flooding are connected.

Slow moving thunderstorms may be the cause of most flash floods, often ones that move repeatedly over the same area, or heavy rains from tropical storms and hurricanes. Tropical storms do not often make their way to the central coast because of the cooler temperature in the Pacific Ocean.

Flash floods can develop within minutes but can also take hours - it depends on the intensity and duration of the rain, the topography of the area, the soil conditions, and the ground cover. Staying tuned in to the weather service and NOAA can help you stay informed during heavy rain events and storms.

If sudden heavy rain and rising standing water happens near you, it is advised that you avoid them if you can. If you are driving, the safest option is to pull over, turn on your hazard lights, and wait out the heavy rain conditions until the road is safer.

 Once a flash flood develops, it becomes a force to be reckoned with. Flash floods can roll boulders, tear out trees, destroy buildings and bridges, and scour out new channels. Flood-producing rains can also trigger secondary events, such as landslides and mudslides. 

If your property has been affected with water damage by a rainstorm, please give SERVPRO of San Luis Obispo a call at 805-541-1271.


1/30/2020 (Permalink)

Flood Flooded baseball field

While considered different from one another, these two are not without their similarities. They can both wreak havoc on a home by submerging your belongings, causing structural damage, and making you lose important items that are irreplaceable. The cleanup process for both is also similar but the most common misconception is often realized by people when they try to file a water damage claim for flooding and find out that flooding is a different thing altogether.

It is actually easy to differentiate flood damage from water damage. All you need to remember is when a home suffers from flood damage, it is usually one of many homes that suffer from the same problem. When your home suffers from water damage, your home is the only one that has such an issue.

When flooding happens, it helps for you to have flood damage coverage on your insurance since water damage does not cover any repairs and restoration that is done due to floods. Before any flooding occurs, you should check your insurance policy for this coverage. If you live in a flood-prone area, you should have the additional coverage added to your policy.

If you have had any water or storm damage call the professionals at SERVPRO of San Luis Obispo (805)541-1721 "Like it never even happened"

Storm Damage Prevention

1/30/2020 (Permalink)

Flood damage Flooded City

Commercial water damage is not something a business owner wants. When water damage occurs, huge losses can come with it. For business owners to avoid such a scenario, they need to put preventive measures in place. This should include procedures to be followed before a disaster strikes, steps that can be taken to reduce the potential damage, and measures that can help prevent damage from occurring.

Water damage can happen because of burst or frozen pipes. Not knowing where to find the shut-off valves for your water supply can open you up to additional damages. If you know where these valves are located, the moment you realize that there is a problem, you can turn these off to prevent more damage from occurring.

While you cannot keep everything that you are selling totally safe, keeping your most valuable items in an area that cannot be affected by floods and water damage can help you avoid massive losses. You should also ensure that important documents and business papers are stored in watertight containers to keep them safe when water damage occurs.

Water damage is not exclusive to flooding or burst pipes. Sometimes, a leak in your roof, a leaking water heater, or faulty HVAC units can cause commercial water damage. Checking on these things regularly can help you address minor issues before these get out of hand.

If you have any water or storm damage call the professionals at SERVPRO of San Luis Obispo (805)541-1271 "Like it never even happened"

10 Do It Yourself Tips to Prepare for a Storm

1/13/2020 (Permalink)

House in the rain Rain pouring on a house.

Storms of all sizes often come when you least expect it, sometimes the damages left behind are devastating and sometimes they go unnoticed, little by little, causing small damages that eventually amount to something much more severe down the road. Here are 10 do it yourself tips to prepare for a storm:

1). Cover Outdoor Items

Outdoor furniture, barbecues, outdoor equipment, and firewood with heavy duty tarps.

2). Sandbags

If your property tends to collect a lot of water (wether or not your home is in a high-risk area) use sandbags to divert water to drainage areas.

3). Trim Trees

When trees become absorbed with rainwater, weak trees can snap or become easily uprooted.

4). Roof, Skylights and Flashing. 

Leaks often occur at the flashing in valleys or where pipes penetrate the surface. Seal these with asphalt roofing cement.

5). Clean (Gutters and Downspouts)

If your house is surrounded by trees, you should clear the gutters and remove any leaves or debris. When gutters and downspouts clog with leaves and debris, water overflows and spills down where it can damage walls and footings. 

6). Repair (Gutters and Downspouts)

Repair sagging or leaking gutters and make sure downspouts carry drainage away from the house. 

7). Inspect House Siding. 

Check for previous damage, cracks and holes. Seal up leaks with paintable or clear caulk. Make sure the paint is in good condition. If it isn’t, consider getting the house painted before winter really sets in.

8). Windows and Doors 

Weather strip all the windows and doors to seal out drafts and minimize heat loss. 

9). Install (Storm Doors and Windows) 

If your home has a combination storm/screen door switch from screens to glass. Spray a little WD-40 on the storm door’s hinges and latches. Be sure the door closer is adjusted and working smoothly. 

10). Supply Kit 

Assemble a supply kit. Store important documents on thumb drives or hard drives located away from your home (or on the Cloud). Consider flood insurance; even if it isn’t located in a high-risk area.

If you have any storm damage needs call the professionals at SERVPRO of San Luis Obispo at (805)541-1271 "Like it never even happened."

Residential Landscaping Tips for Stormwater

1/13/2020 (Permalink)

Amazing Landscape Landscaping of an amazing home.

Seasonal storms do not have to ruin your landscaping and create harmful runoff. Seasonal rain showers wash away soil, rocks, mulch, plants, force trees to fall down, allow large pools of water to build up causing mud pits or even worse cause damage to your homes foundation. Here are some tips to allow your landscaping to be functional but also allow you to keep fantastic curb appeal.

Permeable Pavers

Residential communities often struggle to control the environmental effects of runoff. This becomes an issue when parking lots, driveways, and sidewalks prevent natural water absorption.

Installing permeable pavers offer a way to manage stormwater with your driveway, patio, and other hard surfaces. The stormwater flows through the paver into the soil, rather than running off into the street.

Gravel and Stone Beds

Gravel areas and stone beds provide a porous area that stormwater can quickly filter through to be absorbed into the soil below. These beds are often used in swales, and they’re popular because they have a natural look. Plus, they’re great options for climates where grass doesn’t grow easily.

Berms and Swales

First, consider the lay of your land. Determine where the water currently flows on the property and decide if that location needs to be diverted. If the water naturally flows towards a building, you need to redirect it away from the foundation.

A berm is an excellent solution to this problem. Berms are slightly raised areas of land that can help change the direction the water flows. By combining berms and swales, water can be absorbed in your yard or easily flow through to a catchment designed to allow evaporation while providing a source of water for your plants.

Retaining Walls

Keep in mind the slope of the land while designing your stormwater-friendly landscape. If your property slopes toward any buildings, you will want to divert that water. A tiered retaining wall with stone, shrubs, plants and grass will slow the flow of water down a steep slope. This reduces soil erosion and runoff while the plants absorb and use the excess water.

Rain Garden

If a portion of your yard is lower than the rest and often experiences pooling of stormwater. They also add to a yard’s aesthetic. First, identify a low-lying area and grow a mixture of plants that require a lot of water. Some examples are day lilies, bee balm, and butterfly weed. 

Tips for Stormwater

Your landscape plan will depend on your climate, the amount of precipitation you get, and the size of your yard.For example, you may not want to plant a rain garden if you live in a place that is dry for many months and then sees severe storms. Instead, you may opt for permeable pavers or stone beds.

If you have any damage to your home or place of business due to stormwater, call the professionals at SERVPRO of San Luis Obispo at (805)541-1271 "Like it never even happened."

Repercussions of a Thunderstorm

1/12/2020 (Permalink)

Lightning Strike Repercussion of a thunderstorm, lightning!

It's important to keep an eye on the weather, especially if a thunderstorm is on the horizon. Thunderstorms can lead to the destruction of personal and business property. During a thunderstorm high winds irrupt, with the ability to cause flash flooding, lightning strikes, hail and potentially creating tornadoes. Here's a list of a few repercussions caused by a thunderstorm...

1). Flash Floods

When a thunderstorm rolls through, it can bring torrential downpours of rain with it causing a flash flood which can damage a structure, home, commercial buildings, bridges, etc 

 2). Lightning

When lightning strikes a home or business property, electricity can pass through the wiring of the home. This can cause severe damage to any electrical appliances that are plugged into an outlet. Lightning can also spark fires, which can cause damage to a home or business property.

3). Hail

Thunderstorms can produce hail of various sizes that can be devastating to personal property. Hail can dent the body of a car, break windows and cause extensive roof damage.

4). Tornadoes

When a tornado strikes, its strong winds and debris can cause major structural damage to buildings. A tornado can even make a vehicle airborne.

If a major storm causes damage to your home or business property, call the professionals at SERVPRO of San Luis Obispo (805)541-1271 "Like it never even happened."

Immediate steps after a STORM

1/12/2020 (Permalink)

Storm Damaged Home Massive damage to a home after a storm.

Having a strategy to deal with storm damage in your home or place of business will help you immediately after a storm.

Storm damage can occur at any time, sometimes when we least expect it creating major hazards. Damage to walls, windows, roof, foundation etc. Moisture allows mold growth, that can cause health hazards, to develop in your furniture, carpet, walls and building materials. Here are a few immediate steps you should consider after a storm:

1). Shut off the main gas line.

2). Identify any sharp or broken objects on the property and try to stay clear of those objects.

3). If possible take photographs of the damage, that way you will have a record for your insurance company.

4). Contact your insurance agent. Notify your agent about the damage immediately and schedule an adjustor to come asses the extent of the damage so that payment and repairs can get started immediately.

If a major storm causes damage to your home or business property, call the professionals at SERVPRO of San Luis Obispo (805)541-1271 "Like it never even happened."