Archive for the ‘Water Damage’ Category

Best Spring Basement Flooding Defense Is A Good Offense

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In your front yard, once mighty snow mountains are melting. In the side yard, ice glaciers are turning to watery mush. In the back yard, hardy early spring rains are naturally constructing a small river.

The thaw is on in full force.

The signs of changing seasons are everywhere. Exiting Stage Left is the lousiest Iowa winter in years, entering the picture is the promise of spring, but also the scariest words of the new season:  Spring flooding. read more

How To Beat The Iowa Winter Home Pipe Freeze

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As the thermostat plunges further toward zero, the nervous Iowa homeowner prays to St. Sebaldus, the Patron Saint of Fighting Cold Weather, that her home’s aging water supply pipes can withstand the latest polar plunge of a relentless Iowa winter.

For many Iowans with older homes, this is a heartbreaking fact of brutal Iowa winters. All it takes is one sub-freezing temperature plunge to ice pipes. The University of Illinois’ Building Research Council reports the “temperature alert threshold” – the temperature at which pipes are vulnerable to freezing – is 20 degrees Fahrenheit, especially for pipes running through uninsulated spaces. When the air temperature around water pipes drops, the heat from water inside the pipes transfers out to the cold air. This can happen anytime the air surrounding the pipes dips below 32 degrees (also known as The Freezing Line).

The U.S. Department of Energy reminds all Americans that this time of year “your pipes are vulnerable.” To learn if your pipes are vulnerable to freezing or bursting, read this helpful article. read more

Don’t Be Shocked By The Rising Cost of Home Ownership

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Most homeowners know the toughest rule of the American Dream: the meter is always running.

The U.S. Census Bureau pegs the average cost of running a household at $1,408 per month. That’s a daily homeownership cost of nearly $47. The cost of your mortgage, home maintenance, insurance and utilities adds up fast. Unfortunately, there are some shocking home costs that are rising seemingly as fast as the sun on tomorrow. Every home owner should be aware of these very real and sometimes very pricy home ownership costs: read more

Vacation Checklist to Help Keep Your Home Safe & Disaster-Free

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Many a distracted frantic American vacationer leave their homes each day without so much double-checking to see if they locked the front door or turned off the kitchen lights.

While not as absent-minded as Peter and Kate McAllister famously leaving their son Kevin “Home Alone,” many U.S. travelers are so naturally consumed with preparing and packing for their trip they fail to complete a comprehensive home safety checklist before departing for their destination. The National Travel and Tourism Office reports more than 66 million Americans traveled abroad in 2016. How many left their homes in truly safe condition? read more

Hurricane Harvey Lesson: Don’t Fight Floods Without Insurance

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Arguably, the greatest lesson Hurricane Harvey and the monstrous Category 5 Hurricane Irma have taught American homeowners is don’t chance living in a flood plain without flood insurance.

The powerhouse combined force of two of the strongest hurricanes on record have left tens of thousands of Americans homeless, ruined up two one million cars, and wrecked devastating property and financial destruction in both Texas and Florida. read more

Don’t Let Your Water Softener Fight Hard Water Alone

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If only everything in life was as low-maintenance and efficient at its job as a water softener.

A trusted, quiet friend and worker bee for home owners, water softeners rarely act up and only require the occasional bag of salt to do their job. Capturing hard water minerals as they pass through their tanks, water softeners apprehend harmful harm water, allowing only soft water to pass through the system. read more

Tips to Avoid Tree Damage to Your Home

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Even The Mightiest Oak Tree Needs The Occasional Haircut

There’s few more welcoming and soothing features in American yards than a mighty oak, dogwood or maple tree offering shade, comfort and beauty to your home’s landscape. Having a beloved generations old tree older than your home is having your own living Norman Rockwell painting.

Alas, like children, trees need care and nurturing as they age. Unfortunately, trees, like people, aren’t designed to live forever. And as trees reach their golden years, it becomes harder for them to withstand nature’s wrath as wind, thunder and rain storms can turn aging, dying and overhanging branches into costly weapons that can damage your home and endanger your family’s safety. read more

Washing Machine Home Flooding Prevention Plan

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When washing machines go to the dark side, they usually go bad, super bad, a cat trying to keep its footing during a tornado bad.

We’re not just talking about wet laundry here. We’re talking about a flooded house.

According to a Roto-Rooter study, most household floods and water damage are caused by plumbing or appliance failure. The damage for these disasters can up to hundreds and even tens of thousands of dollars. read more

The House Whisperer: How to Know What Your Home Is Telling You

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Many a home owner has wondered, “If these walls could only talk?”

The truth is, our homes talk to us every day. We just need to listen to the stories, worries, and problems the old gal is telling us.

Anyone can be a house whisperer.

By listening to the noises our houses emit, we can get a vivid picture of their overall structural, electrical and anesthetic health. Houses groan, creak and pop on a regular basis. They are built from a variety of different materials — glass, concrete and wood – that create a symphony of unusual and erratic noises. read more

Client Testimonial: The Allen Family

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From Anne and Bill Allen:

A year ago last January when our state was in a deep freeze we received a phone call from our neighbor that we had a water pipe break. I did not understand the extent of damage 34,000 gallons of water could do until receiving pictures. Our insurance company contacted Reconstruction 380 out of Cedar Rapids and Waterloo, which was the best part of that horrible day! Immediately we were contacted by a 380 representative that had been to our house to begin the long process of drying out and trying to salvage items that could be saved. read more