Landscaping Tips to Prevent Basement Floods

Landscaping may seem just like a way to make the sides of your home or building look pretty, which it is but there are other purposes that it holds. One of the main reasons, other than appearance, is keeping standing water away from your home or building. Below are tips to help you with your landscaping and hopefully prevent basement floods.

Always check the downspouts. Directing water far away from your building is a must and common distance is to send water at least 20 feet. If they don’t, consider buying new ones or extensions for yours before the next storm. The connections between gutters and downspouts can become loosened over time, so check to see if they’re still firmly attached. Remember to always keep your gutters cleaned out. Installing gutter guards on top of gutters will reduce both clogs and the number of cleanings. Even with redirected downspouts, some yards still get erosion when gutters can’t handle the water volume.

The next tip is to make sure the grading of your landscape is in the right direction. Landscape grades that run toward the house instead of away from it often result in flooding. When your grading runs towards your home, it guides water in just like a funnel. The only way to stop the flooding is to improve the grading. To fix this, dig a dry creek and use gravel and river rocks of different sizes to raise the grade of the area and guide water away from the basement. For homeowners who don’t want to splice their yards, he says he can install a French drain where water flows into a gravel trench and then into a pipe.

Mulch is a simple, low maintenance supply to use when landscaping but it has to be done the right way. Mulch is more than just a decorative groundcover; it can hold moisture in and help your plants thrive. While that’s great for your bushes, if that damp mulch is right next to your home, it can rot the building materials over time, allowing rain inside and leading to water damage. If you use mulch around your home’s foundation, leave at least six inches between the mulch and the building to allow for drainage and air circulation. Don’t go closer than that because moisture can wick up from the mulch bed and rot the siding. It can touch brick or block, but not siding. Reconsider which type of mulch you use next to your home; river rocks won’t hold as much moisture as wood chips or bark.

Use native plants for landscaping. Plants, grasses, and shrubs that are local to your area will grow well and naturally prevent flooding by soaking up moisture before it can get into your home. Since they have already adapted to the climate and soil, there’s no need for excess watering to keep them looking their best.

Always watch where water appears around your home or building. If you notice puddles or standing water in the same spot around the foundation, take action before a more serious issue happens. It is always better to be proactive on these types of matters.

3 Reasons to Get Soot Professional Removed

A fire is 100% devasting, even the small ones. The fact is fire includes smoke and soot, and both of those are no joke either. These issues need to be resolved the correct way and in a timely fashion otherwise, they may not be able to get back to their pre-loss condition. This term, “pre-loss” condition, is insurance companies use for the properties original state before the damages occurred. Blue River Restoration is trained and educated on how to get the job done correctly to save you headaches down the road.  Soot removal is a big, dirty job. If you’re dealing with a small damaged area, removing it yourself can be manageable. But if you’re dealing with significant damage from a house fire or the stains just won’t come out, why not call the experts? Here are 3 reasons why choosing a restoration company to get soot professional removed is the better decision over doing it yourself will be much more beneficial.

1) Time is not always on your side. If left untreated or in the area for too long, smoke and soot will not only damage your health but damage your property to the point where it cannot be restored. They also both present serious health risks. Due to their particularly small particle size, they are easily inhaled into the lungs, causing respiratory issues. Exposure to soot has also been linked to various skin cancers. Soot can be very acidic which does not mix well on some surfaces and possessions in a home. If walls are cleaned incorrectly they can leave a permanent soot stain on them. Conversely, if a smoke damage restoration company is called immediately, much of this potential damage can be averted. For this reason, the price of not calling a fire damage restoration company can often be more expensive than not calling them because of all of the lost items you’ll have if they are not immediately and properly restored.

2) Not only what you see must be cleaned as well. Smoke and soot can get into the insulation and HVAC system.  If your HVAC system is running during a fire or following a fire, soot particles will enter your air ducts and filters, causing persistent odor problems and possibly even negative health consequences. To prevent this, we will clean your air ducts and ensure that all harmful and odor-causing particulate health risks are removed. Open windows, install fans and get the air moving will also help with removing some soot and odor but restoration companies have the tools to get the more difficult areas cleaned. Such as if there is a lot of moisture present, there will have to be significant dehumidifying to the air or risk secondary damage from mold. If the fire department sprayed your building with lots of water, you’ll need to do some water damage restoration first as well. Professional duct, vent and HVAC cleaning is also highly recommended. Otherwise, you might get the whole place cleaned up and turn only the HVAC system only to have the smoke damage and odor return.

3) Getting the job done correctly the first time. Soot is a messy and oily residue that leaves its mark on your home. Being of the nature of its acidity, if not done correctly, it can make the problem even worse. By hiring a professional restoration company, problems that could occur by a first timer can be eliminated raising the chances of the property getting done correctly, goes up. Smoke seeps through cracks, crevices, and hidden places, damaging areas you may not be able to see. Also, the health risks that come along with soot mentioned above.

All in all, the price to pay for a restoration company is the route to go because of the benefits it comes with. The hassle of ways the amount of money along with all of the other risks involved. Blue River Restoration understands that and is committed to getting your property back to the way you want it.

Midwest Tornado Safety Tips

Being in the midwest means being susceptible to tornadoes. Indiana is near the end of tornado alley which helps to limit the amount of big and powerful tornadoes.  Some of the biggest recorded tornadoes in Indiana were in 1965 and 1990 that were also some of the deadliest. Here are 5 Midwest Tornado Safety tips to help with safety during a tornado and what to do after one.

1) For any storm, let alone a tornado,  being prepared is essential. There is no way of knowing what type of damage the storm can bring. With any storm, their risk of a power outage let alone being trapped or unable to get supplies. Not being on the scale of a hurricane but a tornado can bring a ton of destruction. Having supplies that can last and be ahead of the storm is always a good one. Supplies that should be prepared are water, nonperishable foods, matches or flares, extra clothes/blankets and some way of communication such as a radio with batteries. Phones are only as good as long as the battery lastest plus if there is a signal. Another item that can come in handy is a flare gun.

2) During a tornado, the most important thing is safety. Making sure you along with your family and friends, basically whoever you are with, are in a proper safe place in the household or area. Any room where there are no windows and is completely enclosed such as basements, storm cellars or any interior room on the lowest floor.  In a high-rise building, pick a hallway in the center of the building. You may not have enough time to go to the lowest floor. In a mobile home, choose a safe place in a nearby sturdy building.

3) Making sure you understand the situation is huge during a tornado. The two terms that weather stations use are Watch and Warning. Watch means that the weather conditions are favorable or could develop a tornado. This also means to pay attention and stay prepared. At this point, you can start to get the area ready with supplies and if it turns for the worse, turn off your utilities. A Warning means a tornado has been spotted and to take shelter. Make sure family, friends, pets or anybody that is around you, takes shelter and is a proper safe location.

4) Once the tornado and storms are over, getting to a safe spot is next. If your home or property is damaged or destroyed, getting everybody to a safe spot to check for injuries. Remember to continue listening to the radio or if you have service with your phone. Once your group is taken care of, if you are trained with first aid or emergency response, checking the area and helping other people.

5) After the storm is over and hours if not days have passed, all you want to do is get back to normal with your healthy and safe family. Blue River Restoration is the company you need to make sure your property is back to the pre-loss condition. No matter the material, Blue River has it covered. We are able to work with insurance companies as well to help you through the process.

3 Fall Prep Tips for your Property

Now that summer is here and the weather is nice and warm, fall is the next season coming up. This means prepping for the fall and winter which follows.  Here are some items to keep in mind while preparing for the fall season.

1) Check the exterior condition of the home. Going over the condition of the roof and material on the side of the home is a simple thing to do that could save you a ton of money and headaches in the end. Check for loose shingles and make any necessary repairs before the autumn storms arrive. Don’t forget to check your gutters while you’re on the roof, and clean them if needed. Look for cracks in your home’s foundation and seal them properly to prevent cold drafts from getting inside. Cracks in your foundation or near windows also function as an entryway for unwanted critters like mice.

2) Along with checking the home and property for damages, taking the extra step is also important. Reinforcing doors and windows to trimming trees and cleaning up the yard is extremely important. Before the cold weather hits, set aside a day to replace your door and window screens with storm windows. You can also add weather stripping to doors and windows to help keep cool air from seeping inside. If you notice any dead branches or decaying limbs on the trees of your property, it’s best to remove them before they can fall on your house or vehicle. Raking leaves and making sure your weeds are under control are also tasks to get done.

3) Winterize your irrigation system is our third step to getting your home ready for fall with winter following. Irrigation or sprinkler systems need to be removed of all water in order to prevent them from freezing up during the winter. You can hire a professional to service your system, or take the DIY approach and use a manual, automatic, or blow-out drain method, where the latter employs an air compressor to blow remaining water out of your sprinkler system. Turn off the water to exterior faucets at the shutoff valve. After doing so, go back outside and turn on the faucets to allow any excess water to drain out. Keeping the exterior faucets open, return to the inside shutoff valve and remove the bleeder cap to allow the remaining water in the pipe to drain into a bucket. Once the pipe is free of water, replace the bleeder cap and turn off the exterior faucets.

Blue River Restoration is the professional certified company you need and can trust to get the job done correctly. Our educated, trained and certified restoration experts will make you feel at ease, working around the clock when needed, to quickly get you back to business. Trust the leading commercial water restoration company in Indianapolis to get your facility back to pre-loss condition at lower costs, minimizing disruption to your business operations. Always remember that the more you do to clean up and stay on top of your property, the more it will help with huge cleanup all at one time. Plus staying up on the maintenance of your property also will help it look better.

Tips to Keep your Bathroom Mold Free

If mold is left untreated, in any room, but in a bathroom, mold can become a health hazard. In any room with constant moisture or a leak and the right conditions present, mold can thrive. Ignoring the situation may escalate and you should turn to a professional mold removal company to make your home inhabitable again.

If a small amount of mold is already present in your bathrooms, you may be able to remove with household products. Some people have successively treated bathroom mold using vinegar, Borax, baking soda, bleach, and ammonia. Be careful when using these chemicals as mixing them can be dangerous. Also, breathing in the fumes or getting the substances on your skin can also cause harm. If you decided to take matters into your own hands, make sure you take proper safety precautions before beginning. If you have a problem area bigger than 10 square feet, refer to guidelines from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency or call in a Blue River Restoration.

Prevent mold from getting worse by thoroughly drying areas where spores have started to develop. Make sure you have the fan running in the bathroom during and after showers. This will keep the area from becoming humid, which is mold’s favorite environment. If there is a leak in the shower, near the sink or by pipes, repair this area as quickly as possible. Addressing the source of moisture and providing ventilation are critical steps for stopping these spores.

Here are some steps to take for a small, do it yourself mold cleanup:

  • Strip away and replace any caulking or sealant that has mold growth.
  • Clean your bathroom with mold-killing products, such as bleach, vinegar, or hydrogen peroxide. Just don’t mix those products; mixing can cause toxic reactions.
  • Open windows and doors while cleaning to provide fresh air and help dry out the mold.
  • Always run a fan when using the shower, this helps keep the humidity down.


Local Reviews