Recent Storm Damage Posts

SERVPRO of Reno NW/Truckee/Tahoe Vista Has You Covered When You Suffer Storm Damage

8/8/2019 (Permalink)

If your home floods or you need a board up due to storm damage, we have you covered!

It's that time of year, when the thunderstorms roll over the Sierras and can cause high winds and rains in the Reno, Truckee and Tahoe areas.   All of us that live in the Truckee Meadows have experienced the high winds and downpours that the storms can bring.  When you suffer storm damage, trees down that knock out windows, cause structure damage we have you covered.  Not only do we offer water clean up, we also offer board ups.  Not only can we clean up all the debris, we will board up your home until the window can be replaced, or the structure can be repaired.  If you ever find your home flooded due to the rains brought by the storms, we are available 24/7 to take care of all your water damage restoration needs.  Our business is IICRC Certified and what that means to you is you will be serviced by professionally trained technicians that know how best to get you back to normal as soon as possible.  SERVPRO of Reno NW/Truckee/ Tahoe Vista is here for you!  Call us day and night, it's our pleasure to help you out in your time of need. 

SERVPRO of Reno NW/Truckee/Tahoe Vista Storm Damage Clean Up

6/13/2019 (Permalink)

When you are suffering from Storm Damage and or Flooding SERVPRO of Reno NW/Truckee/Tahoe Vista is here to help.

It's that time of year again, when the beautiful clouds that roll over the Sierras start to poof up and grow into large thunderstorms.  These storms can bring high winds, driving rains, snow melt and flooding.  If your property suffers storm damage, we at SERVPRO of Reno NW/Truckee/Tahoe Vista are here to service your needs at anytime of the day or night.  We are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.  Call us at 775 747 2800 and we will get a crew scheduled out to clean up any storm damage you may be suffering from.  We understand the urgency of when you and your family are affected by the storms that occasionally cause water damage in the Truckee Meadows.  We get it, we are are your neighbors and we are here for you.

How Do I Prepare For a Storm In Nevada

12/6/2018 (Permalink)

Storms in Nevada can be a daunting thing; we get such extreme weather here that the unique challenges our geography and climate present us with can complicate our preparation efforts when storms hit. 

According to Ready.gov, the best first steps you can take no matter where you are, are to set up emergency alerts on your phone and stay informed! Knowing the difference between "watches" and "warnings" is also imperative:

  • Severe Thunderstorm Watch - Tells you when and where severe thunderstorms are likely to occur. Watch the sky and stay tuned to NOAA Weather Radio, commercial radio or television for information.

  • Severe Thunderstorm Warning - Issued when severe weather has been reported by spotters or indicated by radar. Warnings indicate imminent danger to life and property to those in the path of the storm.


Firstly: you can expect high winds to down power lines here in the Reno/Sparks area, and in more residential parts of the Tahoe/Truckee area. This means services like internet, phone and television may be unavailable until the line is fixed. Do NOT touch a downed pole or line, or attempt to drive over them, or interact with them in anyway. Instead, alert authorities to the downed line, and never drive through flooded areas.

Second: We mentioned flooded areas; parts of Nevada (like Reno and Sparks) are in what is referred to locally as "the valley". This means that much of the rain and melt-water we get "up in the mountains" (think Mt. Rose!) trickles down, fills our flood drains, raises the Truckee river's water level, and potentially floods our streets. That's right; weather in the mountains very quickly becomes our problem down here. So, stay away from flood waters, and "turn around, don't drown!". Flash floods are common here, but casualties shouldn't be!

Third: High winds don't just affect communications around here, they also can cause power outages. We experience these with some regularity, but for a visitor or someone thinking of moving to the area, a power outage can be a jarring experience. Make sure you have a separate power bank to charge your devices from handy, restock your emergency supply kit, and ensure your car's gas-tank is full (gas stations use electricity to dispense fuel; if you don't have electricity, they likely don't either, so if you don't have gas, you can't get it from them!).

During the power outage be sure to stay calm, don't use candles as emergency lighting (fire hazard!), and keep informed with NOAA's safety tips and alerts. 

For more information and to keep up with our tips, follow SERVPRO on Twitter: @SERVPRO10274

And, stay in the loop on Facebook with us, too: SERVPRO10274

Water and Flood Damage In Truckee

12/6/2018 (Permalink)

All the storms this winter are going to cause a lot of flooding this Spring.

According to the Sierra Sun, "much of Northern Nevada set a record for precipitation this past water year, more than doubling the average in some areas," which means SERVPRO has been exceptionally busy with cleaning up water damaged buildings, homes, offices, and vehicles. In addition, the Mount Rose Snowline is moving uphill, meaning more liquid precipitation, and less of that precipitation falling as snow. Sad news for snowboarders, and anyone with property they'd rather keep dry. Chris Smallcomb from the National Weather Service's Reno office stated that "due to the previous record-breaking year and recent rains, the ground is saturated and flooding would occur more easily now." What you can expect from wetter conditions in a valley like Reno is snow-melt and runoff to damage foundations or soak lawns and fill up sidewalk drains. From the Truckee and Tahoe areas, you can expect that meltwater and runoff to reach your property first, and likely be the coldest. Much of it also comes in the form of rain, so you are more likely to have damage before anyone else in the valley does, since the Reno and Sparks areas have to wait for the snow and ice to melt into water before damage occurs. Smallcomb also says that a warning sign of incoming moisture is "atmospheric rivers coming off the Pacific Ocean, which can be projected five to 10 days out," so keep your eye on the news and the social media accounts of the National Weather Service. If you want to know more about atmospheric rivers, our blog has an article on what to expect from them and what they have done in the past: Atmospheric Rivers in Reno. Our social media is a great resource for up-to-date information about the valley floor, over the hill, and lake-side weather changes. For more information and to keep up with our tips, follow SERVPRO on Twitter: @SERVPRO10274 And, stay in the loop on Facebook with us, too: SERVPRO10274

How Bad are Thunderstorms and Lightning in Nevada?

12/6/2018 (Permalink)

The Short Answer: Thunderstorms and lightning are a dangerous force of nature, and more often than not in an arid climate like Nevada, it can cause fires, property damage, and road closures. The Long Answer: In the late months of 2017 there was an increase in lightning strike-related fires in the area.

According to Tim Brown of the Western Regional Climate Center, the wet conditions “create the fuels and [when] it dries out,” we see a lot more wildfires and property damage. Much of the issue with this weather can be attributed to moisture moving towards the north from the southwest, which gives way to warm and wet conditions that are perfect for thunderstorms and lightning. On Monday September 11th, in 2017, there were 2,519 lightning strikes in Nevada, “and 6,735 in California”, according to News Channel 4. And, according to News Channel 2, 2017’s fire season was “the worst in 15 years”.

90% of wildfires in Nevada are caused by humans, but in 2017, only 76% of 2017’s 272 wildfires were caused by people. While we may not get much rain and wet weather here, when we do it can be catastrophic. Storms here cause fires, property damage, and are very physically dangerous to you.

If your property has been damaged by stormy winds, lightning, or rain, SERVPRO has your back. We can make the damage “Like it never even happened”.

For more information and to keep up with our tips, follow SERVPRO on Twitter: @SERVPRO10274 And, stay in the loop on Facebook with us, too: SERVPRO10274

How To Lightning Proof Your House

12/6/2018 (Permalink)

Be #LightningSafe by getting informed with SERVPRO on Twitter and Facebook

Here at SERVPRO, we take every measure we can to handle storm damage and destruction after it happens, but we can’t protect you in the moment; we’re faster to any size disaster, but being faster than lightning is a bit of a tall order!

Learn how to be #LightningSafe by following the tips below:

Ready.gov says that you should remove dead branches and rotting trees before storm season hits. This is because lightning looks for the shortest route to take to the ground; tall trees are a prime target, and, on top of that, they are flammable and can cause a house fire.

If that is something you’re worried about because you are surrounded by trees or just in an unusually dry area, check out our blog on Preventing Fires. “Shutter windows and secure outside doors.

If shutters are not available, close window blinds, shades or curtains.” This offers protection from wind, and an extra layer of home protection as well. Preventing electronics from frying while the storm outside is active is also important. Be sure to “Unplug any electronic equipment well before the storm arrives”.

BONUS TIP: “rubber-soled shoes and rubber tires provide NO protection from lightning.” If you are outside and start to feel static electricity in the air, seek shelter immediately; you cannot rely on your clothing. Ready.gov clarifies that “the steel frame of a hard-topped vehicle provides increased protection if you are not touching metal”, which is good information to have. If you’re driving or near your vehicle during an impending storm, getting in might be the safest option, especially if there isn’t any other shelter nearby!

For more information and to keep up with our tips, follow SERVPRO on Twitter: @SERVPRO10274 And, stay in the loop on Facebook with us, too: SERVPRO10274

Displaced Wildlife and Animals in Your Home

10/19/2018 (Permalink)

"Only you can prevent wildfires--but only I can destroy a home with my BEAR hands!"

It's not nearly as uncommon as we'd like to think! Bear break-ins are a serious matter and can leave your home, office, vehicle or other property looking like a tornado tore through it. Local bears have a motivation for calories--especially in the winter, up to 20,000 calories in a day!--that can lead them to view your dwelling as a prime opportunity to locate food.

Most homes are no match for a bear's incredible strength and intelligence. They are adept at gaining access to a home by whatever means necessary. The amount of destruction they can cause while in your home is astonishing.

Cabinets, refrigerators, microwaves and any other place a bear thinks may contain food are easily dispatched, causing extensive damage to your home and furnishings.

Customers have remarked that it looks as if rooms have exploded. Finding your home damaged by a bear is a traumatic experience. SERVPRO of Reno NW / Truckee / Tahoe Vista has the skill, equipment and experience to deal with the damage left behind by a bear's rampage.

Boarding up the exterior damage where the bear gained access, deep cleaning of the debris left behind and rebuilding the damaged areas are all services SERVPRO of Reno NW / Truckee / Tahoe Vista can perform to make your home "Like it never even happened."

Crawlspaces: What Are They, Why Do They Matter?

6/8/2018 (Permalink)

Maintaining your crawlspace is essential to responsible homeownership!

Crawl Spaces in the Truckee / Tahoe Area

The vast majority of homes in the Sierra Nevada are built on crawlspaces.  The unique topography of these mountains can create issues for our homes.  Snow load, water runoff, and rising water tables need to be dealt with to maintain your property.

If maintained properly, crawlspaces have advantages over other types of construction.

  • It gets the house above the ground, an important point in damp areas.
  • It is less expensive than a basement, and comparable to the price of a slab foundation.
  • Duct work, plumbing, and electrical can run in the crawl space, which makes them easier to service, and move if necessary.

Proper crawl space maintenance begins outside your home

  • Adequate drainage on your property, keeps water away from your foundation.
    • Re-evaluate your landscaping to keep heavy snows from forcing water under your home
    • Rising water tables could necessitate a sump pump system to divert water from your crawlspace.
  • Building codes typically require a minimum of 6” fall in ground level; over a distance of 10 feet from the perimeter of the building. Depending on the topography of your property in this area, this may not be adequate.
    • In addition, inspect for the following:
      • Depressions that collect ground water near the house.
      • Off-site surface water that flows onto the property.
      • Inadequate building offset from adjacent steep slopes, which generate increased surface water run-off.
      • Malfunctioning downspouts or improper downspout installation.

Crawlspaces can be either ventilated or unventilated

  • Ventilated crawlspaces should have:
    • A minimum of 1 square foot of venting for every 150 square feet of crawlspace area.
    • Plastic sheeting covering the entire crawlspace, with proper overlap, for effectively controlling ground moisture.
  • Unventilated crawlspaces require:
    • Seals to prevent air leakage between outdoor air and the crawlspace.
    • Damp-proofed and insulated perimeter walls.
    • Plastic sheeting covering the entire crawlspace, with proper overlap, for effectively controlling ground moisture.

Periodic inspections of your crawlspace are recommended. 

Items to inspect for are:

  • Standing water on top of vapor barrier.
  • Condensation or leaks on water pipes or ductwork.
  • Muddy soil.
  • Staining on walls from water or efflorescence.
  • Sagging or missing insulation.
  • Plumbing leaks.
  • Musty/moldy or foul odors.
  • Deteriorated vapor barrier.

If problems are found in your crawlspace, call SERVPRO of Reno NW / Truckee / Tahoe Vista at 775-827-9944.  We have the technology and training to make any damage to your home, “Like it never even happened.”

How Do I Stop a Broken Pipe From Flooding My House?

12/12/2017 (Permalink)

We hear it all the time when winter storms hit: "Temperatures dropped, winds battered my house, and now a pipe is leaking all over my floors! What do I do?"

It’s a good question! Despite all the waterproofing trouble you went to for the outside of your house, water still comes in. Sometimes the pipe bursts while you’re around, and you have some time to fix it before it gets worse. Other times, our pipes can be less than that forgiving. For when you have the time and are nearby enough to stop the busted pipe, here are some things you should do:

  1. Turn off the water! Provided getting yourself to the main shutoff valve doesn’t pose any dangers to yourself or anyone else, turning off the source of the water is going to be the biggest step in reducing the amount of water damage to your home.
  2. Apply a pipe connector! Having a couple of these on hand is useful for this scenario. Rubber pipe connectors will help stop any residual leakage after you’ve turned the water off. You would usually use these on the joint or near the middle. You may need to fit them properly to the pipe itself, so if you aren’t handy or are just starting out, move on to #3.
  3. Pipe wraps! These were made for the horror story of the burst pipe. You can find a pipe wrap at almost any home improvement retailer, and just need to place it according to the package instructions. These are pretty universal and versatile as they can go anywhere on the pipe for any kind of burst.

After you’ve stopped the leakage to the best of your ability, you should give your plumber a call to fix the pipe.

After that, your best bet is to call SERVPRO: drying out your house after a flood or leak is our forte.

For more information and to keep up with our tips, follow SERVPRO on Twitter: @SERVPRO10274

And, stay in the loop on Facebook with us, too: SERVPRO10274