Recent Commercial Posts
How do You Estimate a Fire Loss?
Heavy fires cause full rebuild.
Estimating a Fire Damage Loss
When a fire has damaged your property, you need to get the repairs done as soon as possible. It's important to have a professional fire damage estimate before submitting a claim. You can use this estimate to ensure your insurance company covers all the necessary work needed to return your home or business back to normal.
How to Determine Cost of Repairs
The cost of rebuilding is based on the type, size, and location of the building. A small commercial building will cost less to rebuild than a large one. Large buildings tend to be more expensive because they often have more complex systems and infrastructure that need to be replaced.
For example, in your estimate, you may find that replacing all plumbing in a large commercial building will cost $100 per foot while doing so in a smaller office or retail space would only cost $50 per foot. Similarly, if you’re repairing an apartment building with several floors and units each containing its own kitchen and bathroom (and therefore requiring materials like pipes), it might take you twice as long to complete repairs as repairing a single-family home with fewer rooms (and therefore using fewer materials).
When estimating restoration costs related specifically to rebuilding structures damaged by fire damage, there are two major factors contributing to how much this type of work costs: property value and scope of damage (i.e., what work needs to be done). Property values tend not to matter too much when talking about residential properties since most people don't have mortgages; however, commercial properties may have varying degrees of financial support from investors depending on their location or industry base which means higher risks associated with them needing repairs after an incident like this one occurs.
Reviewing Your Insurance Policy
Estimators review your insurance policy to determine how much coverage you have for fire damage. This is because the amount of coverage you have depends on the type of policy and location where the damage occurred, as well as whether or not a deductible applies.
For example, if you have fire-damage coverage with an $80,000 limit but experience $100,000 worth of damage to your home in a wildfire, then only $20,000 would be covered by your insurer and they would pay out that amount minus any applicable deductibles.
Reviewing the Estimate
Your insurance adjuster will review the estimate and let you know if it is accurate. If the adjuster has any questions about your estimate, he or she will contact you immediately. He or she may also ask you to add something to the estimate so that it can be finalized. The final estimate should be given to you within a few days of receiving your fire damage cleaning services quote.
The good news is that your insurance company will review your estimate before they send you the final payment. This means that if there are any mistakes in your estimate, they’ll contact you right away. If so, just make a change and resubmit it to them!
When you have fire damage in your home or business, SERVPRO of Hyde Park/Central Austin is here to help. Give us a call to repair your Austin property.
Characteristics of Category 1 Water Damage
Flood cuts were performed on the drywall in a commercial building in Tarrytown, TX.
Category 1 Water Damage
In Tarrytown, TX, water damage to your business is never a good thing. It can cause unwanted downtime, leading to a loss of revenue. If you have experienced a broken pipe in your business and are trying to assess the damage, read about Category 1 water damage below.
Of all the categories of water damage, Category 1 is the most sanitary one. According to the Institute of Inspection, Cleaning, and Restoration Certification, Category 1 water comes from hygienic water. That means you are not likely to experience any adverse effects from accidentally inhaling, drinking, or touching the water with exposed skin.
Some sources of Category 1 water include:
- Overflowing sink or tub
- Malfunctioning appliances
- Busted supply line
- Rain, snow, or ice melt
Believe it or not, even toilet water can be Category 1 water, so long as it involves only clean water!
Not So Clean Water
It is crucial to understand that Category 1 water can quickly degrade into either Category 2 or 3 water. For example, let’s say that your business experiences a drinking water leakage. If your business happens to be a sterile lab sanitized daily, the chances are good that the water will remain Category 1 water. On the other hand, if your business has dirt floors and you manufacture lots of chemicals, the water immediately becomes Category 2 and maybe even Category 3, depending on the extent of the contamination.
Another thing to remember is that your nose knows! Microscopic creepy crawlies love water, and if the temperature is right, they can grow their numbers exponentially. A good rule of thumb is that the category changes if you smell something awful.
Nobody wants water damage in their business in Tarrytown, TX, but Category 1 water is the best possible outcome if it does happen.
Working With a SERVPRO Disaster Recovery Team
We are ready to roll with a team of people to keep your business running even when a disaster strikes.
When your Leander, TX, business property is hit with damage from a storm, fire, flood or similar disaster, you must respond fast. You don't have the luxury of sitting back and waiting until it's convenient to deal with the damage. That's why a SERVPRO Disaster Recovery Team is Here to Help.
The Benefits of Choosing SERVPRO
A disaster can leave you and your employees unsure of what to do. Some of the advantages of calling SERVPRO are:
- 24/7 availability
- Strategic locations
- Commercial large-loss division
- Local project managers
- Assistance with insurance claims
Fast Fire, Flood and Storm Response
You can call SERVPRO right after your business sustains damage. A professional response team is available 24 hours, seven days a week. Technicians can come to your property and immediately begin securing your building from further damage.
One of the advantages of working with SERVPRO is its national presence. You can still benefit from the attention a local project manager provides — there are more than 1,900 locations throughout the United States and Canada. However, the corporate headquarters helps its local franchises with disaster recovery. It provides the equipment and extended presence needed during significant storm damage.
Experience With Large-Loss Projects
SERVPRO provides disaster response to companies of all sizes. Whether you have one or several locations, their technicians have the expertise you need. The commercial large-loss division has experience working with universities, hospitals and government facilities.
Insurance claims are an additional hassle after a disaster. SERVPRO professionals can help you through the claims process from start to finish. They can coordinate with your insurance company and assist with paperwork to ensure a smooth, fast process.
Remediating a disaster is rarely easy. However, having experienced professionals at SERVPRO on your side can ease the burden. They live up to the motto of Faster to Any Size Disaster and the Disaster Recovery Team is ready to help at any time.
How To Handle the Aftermath of Commercial Fire
Commercial fire damage in Cedar Creek, TX.
How to Deal with a Commercial Fire's Aftermath
Calling emergency services and the fire restoration company are some of the most important steps you can take when there is a fire inside your Cedar Creek, TX, business. However, addressing the aftermath requires more action, especially as recovery can take some time. Prepare the building for reconstruction and keep your staff safe throughout the process with these procedures.
Prepare Your Fire Insurance
Once everyone is safe and the firemen have controlled the situation, it is crucial to call your insurance company immediately. They will send representatives to work with you, examine the damage and determine the coverage of your business. Additionally, the commercial building restoration service that will handle your property can assist with the claim. It can run the inspection and fire assessment, as well as organize the required paperwork for an easier process.
Avoid Touching the Damage
The experts who will handle the fire restoration inside the building will have the necessary tools and experience to tackle the scenario. As such, you should avoid touching or cleaning affected areas such as:
- Clothes and cloth-based items
- Electrical devices and equipment
- Ceiling lights and other fixtures
- Packaged and sealed food
- Walls, painted surfaces and carpet floors
- Other soot-coated objects
Without the appropriate resources and techniques, you can risk spreading the damage or making its effects permanent. You and anyone else working in the building should leave these areas untouched to ensure a successful smoke cleaning.
Make the Building Safer
Though you cannot interfere with the damaged parts, there are some ways you can make your business building safer for anyone using it. Ensure no one eats any contaminated food by disposing of it. Also, empty the refrigerators and freezers once they are unplugged and keep them open to avoid additional contamination. Collaborate with the remediators to board up the building and prevent more damage.
An immediate response following a commercial fire is important, not just from emergency responders and the fire restoration agents, but also from you. Learn about the steps to take after the incident to facilitate the recovery.
6 Pieces of PPE for Mold Removal
Personal protective equipment (PPE) is necessary to protect the professionals when they remove mold.
Personal Protective Equipment for Mold Removal
Personal protective equipment (PPE) is necessary to protect the professionals when they remove mold from a location. This is because mold spores can easily become airborne, inhaled, and travel to other sites. Fortunately, the professional in Rosedale, TX, wear all the PPE they need.
Disposable latex gloves are necessary to keep the hands free from hazards during the cleanup process. If an individual is allergic to latex, they must wear nitrile or vinyl gloves instead.
2. Hair Covers
A disposable hair cover is going to resemble a shower cap. They prevent mold spores from landing in a worker's hair and being transferred to another location. These covers will be removed before the individual leaves the worksite and replaced with a new one anytime someone enters the contaminated area.
3. Shoe Covers
Shoe covers are disposable booties that go over work boots. They are also necessary to ensure mold is not tracked outside of the worksite. Like hair covers, they will be removed anytime someone leaves the contaminated area and replaced with a fresh pair when they return.
Safety goggles are worn to protect the eyes. This is important because it keeps the eyes from being scratched or otherwise damaged. They also keep harmful chemicals from splashing into the eyes. These are necessary, and you will see them on any restoration team.
A face mask or respirator is worn to keep mold spores and debris from being inhaled. This is often considered one of the most important pieces of equipment used to protect someone that is removing mold.
6. Tyvek Suits
Some professionals choose to wear disposable Tyvek suits over their regular clothing. This is typical for commercial jobs. It makes it easy for workers to remove their clothing before leaving a site. This prevents them from spreading mold spores to the rest of the building.
A professional remediation company will only undertake a remediation job involving mold growth once they have donned the proper PPE. They will come prepared with all of these safety items. This keeps the workers safe. It also prevents mold spores from traveling to other locations.
Is Storm Damage The Same As Flooding?
Heavy winds and storms caused severe roof damage to this building.
Storm Damage and Flood Damage: What's the Difference?
When it comes to commercial property insurance coverage, there are significant differences between storm damage and flood damage. General policies cover most damage caused by storms but exclude flooding. Learn more about these two types of damage.
Damage Caused By Storms
Many storms come with weather conditions such as high winds, heavy rain or snow. Coastal locations may also be at risk for hurricanes and tropical storms, and tornadoes can pose a threat to inland areas. Regardless of the type of storm, a property may sustain several types of damage:
- Broken windows
- Hail damage
- Roof leaks
- Structural damage
Commercial property insurance should cover all of these forms of damage. A policyholder can increase the likelihood that an insurer will cover a claim by keeping detailed maintenance records and submitting photographs or video footage of the portion of a structure affected by a storm.
Damage Caused By Floods
The term "flood" is used to designate water that comes from outside. This may include several different sources:
- Heavy rain
- Rising bodies of water
- Overflowing sewer mains
Most standard insurance policies exclude flood damage. Owners of property located on a flood plain should obtain a flood policy through the National Flood Insurance Program or a rider on a commercial property policy. Additional coverage will probably be necessary for sewer damage caused by a backup.
Covered Perils and Exclusions
Most forms of storm damage should be covered by a commercial property policy. Building owners should familiarize themselves with the terms and limits of this coverage to determine whether to take out supplemental policies or riders. Additional coverage will probably be necessary for cleaning up and remediating flood or sewer damage.
These are the main distinctions between storm and flood damage. A property insurance policy, flood policy, and endorsements can cover the costs of damage mitigation and restoration at a commercial building in Leander, TX.
Can Mold Spread Through Air Ducts?
Dirt and mold spores can adhere to surfaces within air ducts.
Can Mold Spread Through Air Ducts?
Mold spores are everywhere, but colonies cannot form without moisture and nutrients. Several parts of an HVAC system may be prone to developing and spreading mold. Find out how HVAC cleaning can reduce the likelihood that mold will spread through air ducts.
How Does Mold Get Into an HVAC System?
Mold spores thrive in moist places. Several parts of an HVAC system are likely to support the growth of colonies:
- Condensate drip pans
- Cooling coils
- Duct work
Dirt and mold spores can adhere to surfaces within air ducts. It is important to eliminate the presence of mold in a ventilation system, as cooling and heating can spread spores throughout a structure. If you suspect that mold may be present, turn off the system and schedule a cleaning as soon as possible.
How Do Experts Perform HVAC Cleaning?
Mold cleanup experts have access to commercial vacuums and EPA-registered mold removal disinfectants and inhibitors certified for use in HVAC systems. These specialists will likely:
- Wear personal protective equipment including a mask or respirator
- Clean the affected areas and use a high-powered vacuum to remove mold
- Apply mold inhibitor approved for HVAC use
Every component of the cooling and heating system should be cleaned and treated to prevent mold from recurring. Cleaning vents may prevent mold from spreading.
Will Cleaning Eliminate Mold?
Cleaning can help to eliminate the presence of mold in an HVAC system. Even though spores will continue to be present in the structure, they should be less likely to multiply. It is necessary to take measures that will prevent mold from returning and closely monitor the system. Schedule another inspection if you smell a musty odor or see any evidence of mold.
Mold can form and spread throughout an HVAC system. For the best results, commercial property owners should hire an HVAC cleaning and mold mitigation service in Austin, TX.
4 Signs You May Have a Bathroom Leak
When tiles look like this, it could be for leaking water back behind your tub.
There Are Four Signs That You May Have A Leak In Your Bathroom.
A bathtub leak can cause significant water damage to your bathroom in Austin, TX, and water damage is no joke. It can eat away at your walls and floors and end up being incredibly costly to remedy. It is possible to catch a small problem before it becomes a big problem if you pay attention to subtle clues. Here are four signs you may have a bathroom leak.
1. Peeling Paint
When water finds its way between the wall and your paint job, it can cause peeling, cracking, or blistering. Pieces of paint coming loose and falling to the ground can be a warning sign. A leaky pipe in the wall may cause the surface to feel damp or look deteriorated when the paint is scraped away.
2. Ceiling Stain
A leak in a second-story bathroom can sometimes result in a stain on the ceiling of the room underneath. Bathroom floors get wet with daily use, but a normal amount of water on the floor doesn’t usually harm the ceiling below. If the ceiling is sagging or stained brown, you may have a bathtub leak upstairs.
3. Musty Smell
If your bathroom has an earthy scent that no amount of cleaning seems to eliminate, you may want to check for a leak. When water is trapped behind walls or underneath floors, it isn’t exposed to fresh air. This means it doesn’t have an opportunity to dry. When it sits out long enough, it can start to emit an unpleasant odor.
4. Damaged Shower Pan
While bathtubs are often the culprit, it’s also possible to be plagued with a shower pan leak. The shower pan is simply the base of your shower. Loose tiles, missing grout, or a gap where the floor and wall are meant to connect can indicate that water is seeping into unwanted areas.
Checking for these four signs may help you identify a bathtub leak, leaky pipes, or a damaged shower pan in your bathroom. With timely intervention, you may stop the leak from costing you a bundle in repairs.
Before You Buy, Consider a Mold Inspection
Mold damage in Hyde Park, TX.
When you’re looking to purchase a commercial building in Hyde Park, TX, ordering a professional mold inspection might not be on your to-do list. But while not every buyer will opt for an inspection, the benefits can be great, and the peace of mind can be worth the cost.
Where Can Mold Grow?
The short answer to where mold can grow is almost anywhere. Since mold is a fungus, it only needs three main ingredients to thrive: moisture, the correct temperature and a food source (as minimal as dust or flakes of skin). If these conditions exist in abundance, it only takes up to 48 hours for visible mold to appear, and virtually any functional building has one or more of the following prime environments for mold:
- Heating/cooling vents
This is just a shortlist of where molds can grow, so ultimately, no building is going to be completely exempt from a potential mold problem.
Why Should You Get a Mold Inspection?
If the property you’re purchasing has ever had a problem with mold in the past, an inspection is essential because history is bound to repeat itself. If there is any visible mold or risk of mold growth, an inspection will alert you so you can learn how to rectify it and how much it will cost to do so. If the cost is too great, you may want to reconsider purchasing the building.
An inspection will come at a cost, but the good news is it’s often bundled in with a larger property inspection, which usually includes an assessment of the building’s structure, repair risks and more. More than likely, you will get a good bang for your buck.
Perhaps the most relevant reason to get a mold inspection is because of what might happen if you don’t get one. It could easily save you from spending large sums on mold remediation, repairs or lawsuits – all expenses that could be minimized or prevented with a simple inspection for a fraction of the cost.
3 Things You Don't Want To Happen After a Flood
Flood damage in Leander, TX area
Three Things That Could Happen After A Flood
If you have standing water from a recent flood, your business is susceptible to many different types of infestation. The three most common and most damaging factors that affect flooded facilities in Leander, TX, are the following:
- Mold growth
Insects are important to the ecosystem, but you don't want a whole ecosystem growing in your place of business. Most of the peskiest bugs out there love it when your building has a flood. That's because some of them lay eggs in stagnant water and others enjoy dining on the building materials that have been softened up by moisture. Getting rid of the water as soon as possible is a priority if you want to avoid turning your facility into a swarm of insects.
Warm weather flooding provides a breeding ground for disease. Even if the water source is clean, it is unlikely that every object the flood water comes into contact with is disinfected. Furthermore, organic materials start to dissolve in water very quickly, providing a solution that becomes a food source for disease-causing bacteria. A good flood recovery company will come armed with antiseptics for this reason.
Mold growth starts rapidly when water is present in a building. It can take as little as 24 hours for the first spores to start multiplying. This is because, even in the most pristine buildings, the mold is already present. All it needs is a high level of moisture to get started multiplying and taking over the walls, ceilings and furnishings of your business. This is what makes mold one of the most common secondary sources of loss in businesses that experience flooding.
Insects, diseases and mold growth form a triad of secondary problems that can end up costing you a fortune to clean. Make sure that your water damage is taken care of correctly, and your facility is thoroughly dried, and you will minimize the risk of having issues in the future.
3 Things To Know About Commercial Property Insurance in Case of a Fire
Commercial fire damage in Rosedale, TX.
Commercial Property Insurance
In the event that your Rosedale, TX, building experiences a fire, you'll want to have the right commercial property insurance. This is essential for financing parts of the fire damage restoration process. If you're unfamiliar with this type of insurance, here are three things to know as a business owner.
1. What Can Be Covered
One of the most important parts of getting commercial property insurance is determining what it will cover in the event of a fire. Essentially, this type of insurance covers the building itself, the assets inside and the assets that are just outside. These are some things that can be covered:
After thinking over what you have, consider how much your business’ assets are likely worth and choose the amount of coverage that covers these costs. Also, consider any deductibles that would need to be paid before your coverage kicks in.
2. What Steps To Take
If you're looking to get this type of commercial insurance, there are some key steps you should take. First, thoroughly inspect your property. Take stock of every physical asset you encounter.
Next, meet with an insurance agent to get a better sense of how your coverage would work. If you can afford the agreed-upon coverage, it would likely be wise to invest in it.
3. What the Cost Is
The cost of your commercial insurance can't be immediately determined. Insurance agents need to analyze the replacement value of your inventory. Your agency will also take several other factors into consideration. Essentially, the cost will be lower if your building is less likely to experience a fire. This can involve your building's materials, the city's fire protection, the fire preparation in your building and the building's tenants.
In the event that your building experiences a fire, you'll want to be prepared with commercial insurance. Assess your property and consider taking steps to protect it.
How To Prevent Mold Growth
Mold can grow almost anywhere. All it needs is some moisture and the right temperature.
Prevent Mold Growth In Your Business
Black mold is one of the more notorious varieties of mold growth, but all types can be problematic for your Bastrop, TX, business. Knowing the most common locations for mold growth as well as a few preventive measures can help you keep your commercial building mold-free and ready for business.
Mold Growth Locations
Mold needs warmth, water, and a food source to grow. Anywhere with these three elements can foster mold growth. Unfortunately, most indoor locations are sufficiently warm and have a variety of food sources available. The following are some common places black mold and other varieties of fungus may grow in a commercial building:
- Live plants
- Air ducts
Perform routine inspections for signs of mold growth to catch problems early. Large, uncontrolled areas of mold growth are likely to require a professional restoration service.
Keeping your commercial building dry is a sure-fire way to prevent a mold infestation. Without moisture, the spores will not be able to grow. Keep the indoor humidity below 50%, and clean up spills and leaks as quickly as possible. It may be necessary to run a dehumidifier in humid areas.
Routine maintenance of the HVAC system also decreases the likelihood of a mold infestation. Clean ducts have less dust for mold to eat and are less likely to spread mold spores throughout the building.
Installing an air purifier with a HEPA filter is another way to decrease the number of spores circulating through the air. High-quality filtration systems are able to capture many of the spores before they have a chance to colonize.
Decreasing the number of mold spores and minimizing the food and moisture available will hinder the growth of black mold and other fungal nuisances. While it may be impossible to prevent all mold growth, routine inspections can help you spot new growth before it becomes a major problem.
What To Consider Before Meeting a Commercial Fire Insurance Adjuster
Commercial fire damage in Bastrop, TX
A blaze in your Bastrop, TX, commercial building can be a stressful experience. The fire damage could appear overwhelming. While emergency restoration specialists can assist with the cleanup, you may need to file an insurance claim to pay for the remediation. This can lead to additional frustration. To help things go more smoothly, consider the following before meeting with your insurance adjuster.
Types of Damage
The heat and flames from a fire can harm various parts of your property. The water used to suppress the fire can cause damage, as well. The disaster could thus affect:
- The structural integrity of the building
- Important equipment
- Valuable electronics
Your adjuster will likely want proof of the damage to your building. Look for photos of the property that you took prior to the fire. You can then present those images alongside pictures from after the blaze. If you do not have any “before” pictures, use blueprints and receipts to demonstrate the previous structure of the building and the assets that were inside it.
Extent of Coverage
Ideally, your insurance will pay for most or all of the fire damage restoration. Unfortunately, that is not always the case. If your policy only offers limited coverage, try to get help from a public adjuster or your agent.
Be sure to approve the contractors used by the insurance company before the repair work begins. Do not allow the insurer to hire workers who use dangerous materials such as lead or asbestos.
Finally, ask the insurance adjuster if you need to provide any additional documents as part of your claim. If the provider works with a forensic auditor, you may need to produce certain financial statements.
Before you make your fire damage claim, make sure that you understand your policy and gather the evidence and documents you need. You should also check that your insurance provider uses trusted and reliable contractors for the repairs. This should make the fire mitigation process more efficient.
The Effects of 3 Categories of Water Damage On Contents
Restoration professionals break down water damage into three categories
Water Damage Categories
The level of contamination in water from a leak or flood determines the severity of the damage. Restoration professionals break down water damage into three categories. Category Two and Category Three water are both contaminated. Here’s what you need to know to assess the full extent of damage at a flooded company in North Loop, TX.
Category 1 Water Damage
Category One damage involves clean water from a broken pipe and only requires extraction and drying within 24 to 48 hours. There are a limited number of possible sources of treated water in a finished commercial structure:
- Fire suppression system
- Plumbing system
- Water-based appliances
Supply lines that run to commercial bathrooms, water features, fire suppression or appliance systems can all pose a risk of causing Category One damage. Cleanup experts recommend fast drying of a flooded company and extracting moisture with a dehumidifier.
Category 2 Water Damage
The second category of water damage is contaminated, but does not contain solid waste. Biohazardous materials such as chemicals or microbes may be present in Category Two water damage. As a result, a backup of bathroom facilities, major roof leak or any other incident that leads to this type of damage requires disinfection followed by specialized techniques such as dry cleaning delicate contents that have become stained and drying.
Category 3 Water Damage
Two common sources of Category Three water damage include a sewage backup into a commercial structure that has filled with water from one or more external sources. This type of damage calls for thorough disinfection and may require restoration workers to tear out ruined building materials and dispose of irreparably contaminated contents.
Cleanup and restoration measures may vary based on the unique conditions at a flooded company or commercial building in North Loop, TX. Comprehending the distinctions between these three categories of water damage can help building owners and managers determine mitigation needs.
Hidden Water Leaks Could Cost You Thousands
Water damaged on baseboard due to hidden leak behind wall
A water leak is sometimes easy to spot. You may find a small pool of water begin to form in a corner of your basement, or you may discover a faucet that drips constantly. Since these types of leaks are found quite easily, you can remedy the situation before it becomes a huge problem. By contrast, a hidden leak is much harder to spot, allowing it to spread until it creates serious water damage in your home in Leander, TX.
How To Spot a Hidden Leak
Hidden leaks can occur both in the home and outside. Once the water is found, it may require a water damage repair person to assess the situation and provide guidance on how best to repair the leak.
1. Leaks Inside the Home
Hidden leaks can be spotted if you know what to watch for.
The first sign of a hidden water leak is usually the smell. When water begins to leak under the floor or behind a wall, it has an unpleasant musty smell.
Mold will also begin to grow in unlikely areas. Any mold that is spotted outside of the shower area is especially concerning.
Carpet may also seem damp without a noticeable reason.
If these signs are ignored, water can begin to damage the walls, floors and ceiling in your home.
2. Outside Leaks
A hose could be left on without noticing it for a long period of time. Underground sprinkling could malfunction causing a pipe break under the ground's surface. Any water that pools on the grass or underground will eventually make its way into your home.
Check the water meter reading on your monthly bill. If your current monthly reading has increased from last year's bill, without any abnormal water usage, it could indicate a leak.
A water leak can be very costly to fix. Once water gets into the carpet, drywall and upholstery it takes a professional to handle the situation. Stay vigilant and aware of potential problems.
How To Mitigate Water Damage
Water damage in Hallandale, TX due to bursting pipe
One of the most common causes of property damage is water. Most water-damage claims are caused by bursting pipes or a supply line leaking. A pipe burst cleanup can be very extensive.
Preventing Bursting Pipes
When temperatures start to drop, frozen pipes are one of the biggest risks of commercial property damage. Many pipes are located in the basement of a building where there is no heat. Before temperatures start dipping down below freezing, take some preventative measures. Insulate all pipes that are outdoors or in unheated areas of your building. You can also use heat tape for an extra layer of precaution if you live in an extremely cold climate.
Allowing the water to run at a slow drip helps relieve pressure if the pipes do freeze. Inspect your pipes regularly for any small leaks. Undetected leaks can lead to major damage.
Steps To Take If Pipes Burst
A pipe burst cleanup is no laughing matter. You could potentially be dealing with large amounts of water. As soon as you discover a problem, turn off the main water supply. If you are unable to turn off the water supply, tell your plumber it is an emergency. You may need to shut down the power if water starts seeping from the ceiling or walls.
If you have an immersion heater or central heating system, it is wise to turn it off. This will prevent any damage from trying to heat an empty system. Now that you have taken measures to prevent the problem from getting worse, try to save any important documents or content inside the building that could get damaged.
The pipe burst cleanup may require water mitigation professionals in Hallandale, TX. You need to remove all the water and dry the building out completely. Depending on the extent of the damage, it could require the use of special equipment.
When dealing with major water damage, speed is important. You want to get things dry before the damp has a chance to set in.
The Process Behind Mitigating Wind Damage
If you live in a place prone to windstorms or you know one is coming, then pay close attention to what it takes to prepare. If you currently have a damaged roof or any sign of a roof leak, then your home may not be sound enough to withstand a windstorm. You need to take proper precautions. This may mean repairing any weak areas or covering them so they do not get worse. Here is a list of what you should look out for:
- Broken skylights
- Cracked windows
- Damaged siding
- Missing shingles
Mitigating Wind Damage
A windstorm may cause a variety of problems to your business. On one hand, it may blow off shingles, throw debris at your home or lead to damaged siding. You need to be prepared for just about anything. Not only can the wind cause damage, but the debris the wind brings with it can also. Hard objects can knock shingles off, and large trees may break through your roofing entirely. All of this can lead to a roof leak and further damage.
Once the wind has done its damage, it’s time to pick up the pieces. For any damage done to the roof, tarps can be used to cover gaps created by the missing shingles. These tarps will help keep rain from entering your business while you work on restoration. You want to make sure that you do not have any further water damage. Additionally, you can use plywood to cover the holes on the roof. While repairing the building is one thing, you also want to make sure no other issues arise.
A windstorm can cause costly, extensive damage to your Austin, TX, business. The best course of action is to reduce the risk wind can cause. Whether you have a roof leak or something more dangerous, don’t let any problems sit until they get worse. In some cases, a professional service may be helpful.
The 3 Pillars of Commercial Fire Preparedness
Vacuuming the alarm to remove any dust that might interfere with operation
Commercial Fire Preparedness
Emergency services respond to more than one million structure fires each year. If you consider fires put out by an occupant of the property, the number is much higher. Understanding the importance of early detection, prevention and readiness may raise your level of fire preparation and minimize the fire risk in your Allandale, TX, business.
Working smoke alarms are your best defense against a commercial structure fire. Smoke alarms notify you loudly when smoke is present. If your alarms are malfunctioning, they may not do their job. Consider the following practices:
- Testing each alarm monthly by pressing the reset button.
- Vacuuming the alarm to remove any dust that might interfere with operation.
- Installing new batteries every 6-9 months
Building codes require smoke alarms because they provide early detection, an essential part of fire preparation. Adding smoke alarm maintenance to your annual schedule is recommended.
Anticipating the potential causes of commercial fires will inform your strategy for disaster preparation. Consider evaluating your potential risk areas and eliminating them. For example, keeping your heat and dryer vents cleaned out can prevent bird’s nests or lint blockages from igniting. Having your natural gas lines inspected for leaks once per year is an important practice. Exercising caution when using space heaters, candles, and smoking implements is integral to fire preparation. It’s helpful to take a little time to identify and address these types of risks.
Readiness means being prepared to respond effectively to a fire. Keeping an adequate number of fire extinguishers in your building is strongly recommended. If you think it would be useful, you can request a consult from your local fire remediation expert. They can help you identify evacuation routes, design fire drills and help you determine the proper number and location of fire extinguishers.
The energy it takes to reduce your fire risk is minimal in comparison to the disruption and cost of recovering after fire damage. A plan that includes early detection, prevention and readiness can turn a potential disaster into a harmless close call.
Does Renters Insurance Cover Flood Damage?
Does Renters Insurance Cover Flood Damage?
If you are a landlord and rent property in Leander, TX, it is to your advantage if your tenants obtain renters insurance. This policy covers their belongings in the case of a fire or from damage or loss of contents due to vandalism. It also has a component of liability coverage in most cases, which could come back to being a benefit for property owners. That's because the liability aspect covers accidental damages caused by a renter that spills out into other rental units that you own. While legally, tenants are responsible for this damage, if they do not have the money or insurance to pay out, you could be left holding the bag.
The Benefits of Insurance Coverage
The best situation is when both the landlord and the tenant have adequate coverage. In the case of a storm, or some other damaging event, it is common for the property owner to pay for any structural damage, while the tenant pays for damage to his or her belongings. Basic renters insurance covers the following situations:
- Damage inflicted by a pet
- General liability
The coverage for a renter is usually fairly inexpensive. A tenant can also purchase add-on coverage in the form of extra insurance for high-value items or coverage for such things as plumbing malfunctions that destroy contents.
The Advantage of Storm Response
Whatever your insurance coverage is as a landlord, and whatever renters insurance your tenant has, it's always a good idea to partner with a storm remediation team should disaster strike. A fast local response is critical to saving property and reducing expenses. Professionals will have the equipment needed to remove water and deal with difficult situations such as contaminated water from a flood or a sewer backup. A top company will also help you work with your insurance company to get a fair and accurate claim payout.
3 Tips for Locating Unseen Mold
A musty smell could be the cause of mold growth
3 Tips for Locating Unseen Mold
When you have a mold smell in your North Loop, TX, business there may be a problem. Unfortunately, odor alone is not always enough to locate the problem. If you haven’t found the source of the smell, here are a few things you may want to consider.
1. Look for Water Problems
In many cases, a persisting fungus smell can also indicate a moisture problem. This is because most mold growth occurs around areas of water damage. If you have a location in your company property that has sustained water damage this should be the first place you look for possible mold. Consider leaky appliances or bathroom areas, but also check around the foundation or areas of damage in the roof.
2. Call a Professional
It’s also highly recommended to contact a remediation service whenever you notice a mold smell. These professionals will have a good idea of where the source of the odor may be. In the event that mold spores are not visually identifiable, they should still be able to perform several tests in order to determine if mold is present on the company property.
3. Have a Test Done
If you can’t see the source of the mildew smell, the restoration professional can complete a series of tests to determine if and where mold may be. They may conduct an air test, take a residue sample, or even take a sample of material that mold may be growing on. Once the results have been determined the remediation service can let you know what the best course of action will be.
Locating a mold smell at your place of business can take a little time. Consider areas where water damage or other moisture problems have occurred around the business property. If the source of the odor remains unfound the professional remediation service can have some tests done to determine the location and mold type of anything located on the company property
Evacuation Drills in the Workplace
Where are accessible exits?
Evacuation Drills in the Workplace
Workplace emergencies can happen, and employees should know how to handle them. If they don't, chaos could happen, putting people at risk of injury. Holding a fire drill isn't just for kids; adults need it as well, identifying the most efficient and safest pathways to take. After all, fire restoration companies can repair a building. They can't give back a life. Thus, managers and business owners in Allandale, TX, should do three things to prepare workers for these occasions, giving them the tools they need.
1) Create a Plan
Employers should start thinking about possible trouble. Are you prepared for a fire? Do you know how to handle violence? What would you do in the case of flooding? These situations pose physical threats and should be taken seriously. After all, you cannot predict these occasions. They just happen. Sit down with a team, thinking about your facility and how you could leave it quickly and securely. Then, organize your concepts in a portfolio, available for annual review. In it, make sure you include the following:
- Safety protocols
- Evacuation maps
- Emergency contact numbers
- Medical notes
- Relocation spots
2) Share Information
With a blueprint in hand, hold a meeting with your crew. Review your expectations. How should people report an incident? Who has chain of command? Where are accessible exits? You do need multiple paths in case one becomes cut off. In addition, assign one or two people with medical responsibilities, capable of assisting those who may get hurt or need extra attention. Disseminate the fire drill information at least once a year, asking for feedback and questions.
3) Practice Procedures
During a major event, people sometimes panic. Have a run-through once a year, if not more. This could give people the security they need to avoid craziness. Initiate the event by sending out your warning. You'll need to know if everyone receives the alert. Then, time how long it takes for everyone to leave. When all is done, reassess and make amendments as needed.
Brainstorm ways to best save lives; then, hold a fire drill. Be patient, and work through any complications. Just remember that safety is key.
Salvaging Goods After Water Damage
Water loss in a Bastrop, TX building
A flooded company means much more than just sopping up water for business owners. Your commercial building in Bastrop,TX, has furniture, drapery, electronics, doors, trim and other structural elements that can be greatly damaged by water. All of these things are important and represent an investment. The first inclination may be to toss everything, but some of your assets are salvageable.
Dry and Sort
If a broken pipe is the culprit, you can have a little peace of mind that you don’t have to deal with the potential black water that comes with flooding. There is still the possibility that mold has begun to spread, so it is important to get everything affected by the water thoroughly dried out. Once you have completed this process, inspect and sort everything to determine what can be salvaged. Items that will likely need to be thrown out include any porous materials that can’t be dried or cleaned and fabrics that show signs of discoloration.
Clean the Damage
When faced with a flooded company, having your investments sorted will allow for a better understanding of the actual damage. Along with cleaning some things yourself, remember that dry cleaning is not just for clothes. Furniture, upholstery and draperies can likely be good as new after the services of dry cleaners. When it comes to the rest, considering the following tips to make the process easier:
Organize items based on cleaning methods, such as hand or machine washing.
Use a disinfectant on furniture, walls and floors to prevent mold growth.
Wash items in the hottest water possible to remove potential contaminants.
Use a professional water damage restoration service to ensure there is no interior damage to specialized items such as electronics.
A flooded company is a hassle, but it doesn’t have to result in a long-lasting impact on your business. Quick action, proper cleaning and the help of specialists can make it seem “Like it never even happened."
How To Prepare Your Business for a Fire
For proper fire preparation, ensure you have enough fire extinguishers around the building
How To Prepare Your Business for a Fire
As a business owner in Allandale,TX, the physical assets and investments you have accumulated can be a vital component to your success. From machinery, tools, and the building where everything takes place, a business fire can be devastating. Protecting these assets, as well as the people that work for you, is a critical component to your success as a business. Fire prevention should play a part in your protection plan, so you’re not caught off guard with potentially catastrophic losses.
Fire Extinguishing Equipment
For proper fire preparation, ensure you have enough fire extinguishers around the building and make sure they are updated. They should be stamped with a date, which should be less than a year old. The extinguishers must also be mounted correctly and without any obstructions around them. If your building has a hood system, it is necessary to have it inspected twice per year. If you have a sprinkler system, the sprinklers themselves should not have anything within 18 inches of them. Fire doors must also be clear and fully functioning.
It’s also important to talk about the possibilities of a business fire with your employees and make sure they are trained on what to do in potential emergency situations. Make sure they keep combustibles away from heat sources, properly use and store flammables, and know how to operate fire extinguishers and where they are located. It’s not a bad idea to conduct fire drills occasionally, especially for larger businesses with many employees.
Keep Your Building Safe
To prevent fire damage, it is also important that other parts of the building are up to code and safe to operate, as well as clutter-free for employees to safely do their jobs.
Electrical outlets should not have exposed wiring.
Extension cords should generally only be used as a temporary solution.
Electrical panels should have at least 36 inches of clearance.
Hallways should be clear of unnecessary trash or clutter.
Being prepared for a business fire is an essential part of any disaster preparation plan. While a fire might seem unlikely, mistakes and unexpected things do happen. Prepare for the worst and hope for the best, and if you experience the worst, there are fire remediation solutions to get you back on your feet in no time.
Preparing Your Commercial Building for the Spring Thaw
Make sure any rain gutters are clear and water is able to flow freely
Your business may not be off the hook for the possibility of flooding just because you don’t have a leaking supply line or a frozen pipe. The annual spring thaw can present problems of a different type. Luckily, there are steps you can take to help prevent a spring flood at your business in Hyde Park,TX.
How To Prepare for the Spring Thaw
Make sure to check all of the following to help prevent water from entering your business when the snowmelt and rainy season arrives.
- Have snow and ice buildup removed from the roof of your building
- Make sure any rain gutters are clear and water is able to flow freely
- Prevent snow from accumulating around the base of the building
- Sandbag vulnerable areas such as doorways or window wells if necessary
Putting These Tips Into Action
A buildup of ice or snow can leak through the smallest cracks as it melts and cause flooding to run down through walls or into light fixtures. Keeping it cleared off can literally take a load off your company’s building and help prevent serious water damage.
Any snow that does melt will need to have a runoff point. Make sure that rain gutters are free from leaves or other debris and angled such that water can run freely through them rather than finding other, less desirable outlets.
Snow accumulation can cause leaking into basements or ground floor areas. Keep the snow removed to at least a few feet away from the foundation. Place sandbags at any point known to have standing or flowing water to re-direct the water flow away from doors, windows or any foundational fissures.
Even with the best preventive practices, a spring flood can wreak havoc with your building. If the spring thaw or a frozen pipe allows flooding water in, call a qualified water remediation company in Hyde Park,TX to help work through the cleanup and restoration process. They are Here to Help you get back to business.
What To Do If Mold Is Growing in an Apartment
Mold growth under cabinets
Mold contamination at an apartment building may pose a bigger challenge than an infestation in a single-family residence or commercial structure. Tenants and owners have distinct responsibilities and different levels of liability for reporting damage and arranging for mold cleanup. Mold growth may also affect more than one unit. Take these three steps to ensure that all parties are informed and resolve the problem as quickly as possible.
1. Notify the Property Owner
Tenants should contact a landlord as soon as water damage becomes apparent. If signs of mold appear without evident water damage, damage may have occurred elsewhere in a structure. Tenants and landlords should correspond in writing and retain copies of these records.
2. Document Damage
Tenants or property owners should take photographs or record videos the document the full extent of damage. A tenant can provide this evidence to an owner to support a damage report. Documentation is also helpful if renters or property insurance policies include coverage for any portion of mold cleanup costs.
3. Schedule Mold Testing and Remediation
A property owner should arrange for an indoor environmental professional to test for mold spores. An IEP can determine whether mold is growing, identify the species and offer insight on the best cleanup and remediation methods. Processing test results may take several days, and cleaning up a minor to moderate infestation can take up to a week.
An owner of an apartment or multi-family residence should respond promptly to reports of water damage or mold contamination from tenants. Disregarding these notifications may be grounds for legal action. Apartment owners should rely on certified professionals for testing and mold cleanup. While non-professionals may be able to clean up a minor infestation, trained remediation experts can make sure that the problem is eliminated and reduce the likelihood that mold growth will recur at a building in Tarrytown, TX.
How To Clean Up Puff Back Soot
Oil- burning furnace puff back in Austin, TX
A furnace puff back occurs after an explosion in the combustion chamber of an oil furnace. Smoke and soot are released and spread throughout a structure. In addition to damaging the furnace, a puff back also calls for professional cleaning and restoration. Find out why you should rely on cleanup professionals to take care of puff back damage.
What Causes a Furnace To Puff Back?
Oil-burning furnaces run a risk of puff back. These incidents tend to occur when
- The furnace fails to ignite
- Oil vapors build up in the ignition chamber
- An explosion occurs upon ignition
Soot from a furnace puff back spreads throughout heating and exhaust systems. The incident may also introduce debris to every room in a structure. Building owners and managers should monitor oil-burning furnaces for indications of problems, such as the presence of soot in or around the furnace or noises in the combustion chamber at the start of a burn cycle or while the furnace is not running.
What Damage Can A Puff Back Cause?
A puff back can damage the furnace and result in extensive puff back damage throughout the structure. Oily soot may coat every surface, including ductwork, and spread throughout every room with an open vent. This damage may call for the use of specialized cleaning equipment and solutions.
Why To Rely on Cleanup Professionals
Amateur cleaning efforts can actually worsen damage caused by a puff back incident. A cleanup company that specializes in fire and smoke damage will have all of the equipment necessary to handle this type of damage. Professionals can work quickly to restore a commercial structure.
If an oil furnace experiences a puff back, the owner or manager of the building should contact a furnace repair service and a damage restoration company in Austin,TX. Puff back damage mitigation calls for fire and smoke damage restoration methods.
How To Avert 3 Common Sewage Issues
Many commercial buildings in Cedar Creek,TX, may be susceptible to sewage issues. Because a blocked sewer or overflowing toilet can cause significant damage, it’s helpful to recognize specific factors that may contribute to the problem and learn how to address them. Abiding by the following guidelines can help minimize the risk of unsanitary flooding inside your facility.
1. Broken Pipes
Like most infrastructure, sewage lines can deteriorate and fail over time. While you may not be able to completely prevent pipe breaks, making conscientious landscaping decisions can help minimize the risk.
Roots seek moisture and can easily infiltrate and damage sewer and water pipes. Because of this, it’s important to identify the location of critical infrastructure lines and plant foliage away from these areas.
2. Blocked Lines
In addition to damaging supply lines, excessive root presence can result in a blocked sewer. Inappropriate waste disposal can also have a detrimental impact on the system.
Paper towels, diapers and feminine hygiene products should never be flushed down the toilet. To help alleviate this concern, you should have trash bins accessible in every restroom and post signage reminding staff and visitors of appropriate waste disposal techniques.
Grease is another potentially problematic product that can build up inside plumbing lines and cause a blockage. To help minimize obstructions, commercial kitchen staff should avoid dumping cooking oils down sinks.
3. Overflowing Toilets
A toilet overflow is another common sewage issue. Performing routine inspections is a beneficial strategy that may allow you to identify defective toilet components before substantial leaks and water damage occur. You can also help prevent unsanitary commode seepage by encouraging proper trash disposal, promptly completing necessary repairs and using a plunger instead of drain cleaners to remedy slow drains.
No Cedar Creek,TX, business is immune from a blocked sewer or flooding toilet. However, making informed decisions and performing proactive measures can help minimize the risk and may spare you from a messy and potentially costly sewage cleanup.
Can Hail Really Harm My Business?
Roof holes due to hail in Bastrop,TX
Most business owners know that hail storms can cause to vehicles. But far fewer recognize the threat they can pose to your commercial building. Hail storms are held responsible for millions in dollars each year in roof damage and damage to siding and roof-mounted equipment. Just what types of damage can these balls of ice cause? Read on to learn about the unexpected dangers of hail damage to Bastrop,TX business owners.
What Is Hail?
Occurring in strong to severe thunderstorms, hail is a type of frozen precipitation that forms when water droplets freeze together and fall to the earth. They can vary in size from as small as a pea, or as large as a softball or even larger, and they typically include jagged edges that can inflict major damage. Other important things to know about are that:
- Hail doesn't have to be large to be damaging
- Hail storms can happen any time of year
- Wind strength and speed can influence severity of hail impact
- Dangerous hail events outpace tornadoes
Types of Hail Damage
Hail most typically causes roof damage falling into two categories. Functional damage concerns roof performance and includes damage that can diminished the roof’s integrity. These can include holes, cracks and bald spots where shingles have come off.
Cosmetic damages, meanwhile, concern appearance rather than roof function. These can include dark spots, dents and pock marks that occur when hail comes crashing onto the roof.
The roof isn’t the only part of your building at risk from hail. These icy projectiles can easily shatter windows, spraying glass inside. Once windows are broken, hail can even strike you or your staff.
Hail events can be damaging and highly expensive. Understand the risks and be prepared before hail strikes. If a hail storm has already caused roof damage or worse, call a specialist in storm cleanup to make things right.
Why Use a Restoration Company - The 3 Ts
Flooding from a broken pipe in Cedar Creek, TX
When you have flooding from a broken pipe, pipe burst cleanup is the first thought that pops into your head. You are a smart person, you even own a successful business in Cedar Creek,TX . So you can easily fix a pipe and clean some water, right? Unfortunately, you may be wrong. Water damage causes serious issues that may not be visible to the untrained eye. Restoration specialists have the skills necessary for any type of water damage, whether you require a clean water removal or sewer cleanup company. Remember the three Ts when considering if a restoration company is right for you:
Water restoration specialists are trained in the specific needs of both residential and commercial properties. Certification by the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) ensures that the technicians are knowledgeable and current in their field of expertise. This includes health and safety concerns, drying methods, pipe burst cleanup procedures and restoration of both structural elements and contents.
Restoration specialists have tools that you do not have at your disposal. Professional grade pumps and vacuums are used to remove excess water. Moisture levels are monitored with hygrometers and other specialized detectors. Industrial strength dryers and dehumidifiers remove any remaining moisture to prevent secondary problems such as mold. Hidden moisture is detected using infrared cameras.
Restoration companies employ specialists in many areas, including water damage, storm damage and mold remediation. Different techniques are employed depending on your specific situation. For water restoration, a variety of cleaning methods are used including immersion, foam, wet, dry and others specific to the needs of the material. Restoration processes are tailored as well.
Pipe burst cleanup is not the same as wiping up a glass of spilled water. When you have significant water damage at your commercial property in Cedar Creek,TX , a restoration company has the training, tools and techniques to restore your business to preloss condition.
Steps to Repair Water Damaged Electronics
After investing heavily in the equipment and technology that keep your business in action, flooded electronics and the ensuing water damage can feel overwhelming. Is it possible to repair the damage on your own?
One of the most serious causes of damage is the corrosion caused by hidden moisture. The combination of metal, water, and oxygen creates an iron oxide, or rust. This gradually breaks down the metals within your equipment. The damage may be apparent within a few hours, but it could also take days before you notice it. The damage to flooded electronics isn't limited to your equipment. Your outlets, circuit interrupters, light switches, timers, and other wired conveniences often experience electronic damage.
As you begin cleaning up after water damage, carefully consider the risks. It is possible and often very likely that you'll cause further damage to the equipment, and you could put yourself at risk of injury. Some solutions sold for rust removal aren't appropriate for all kinds of technology.
• Unplug the device and remove batteries. Be aware of exposed connectors that may be fragile or affected by corrosion.
• Watch out for white or green buildup on charging ports or battery, SIM card, and metal connectors. These are areas of corrosion.
• Use cotton swabs or a soft cloth and a gentle cleaning solution to wash off the corrosion. The cleaning solution may be a mix of baking soda and water, vinegar, or isopropyl alcohol. If the corrosion doesn't come off with gently wiping, you may need to let the solution sit on the area and wipe it off later.
• Allow the electronics to dry completely before plugging it in or replacing batteries. Do not use a heated hair dryer on equipment.
The best step for cleaning your electronics is to contact a professional in Austin, TX. You risk doing further damage to the equipment, suffering from injuries, and voiding insurance coverage or equipment warranties when you DIY this task. Keep these risks in mind before trying to clean corrosion from flooded electronics on your own.
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Downtown Austin Commercial Building Flood - Drone vs Fire System Sprinkler
Extracting water after a commercial flood.
SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin received a call from a downtown Austin Commercial Property Management Company shortly after 5:00 pm one weekday evening. They had a fairly large water loss. What was really surprising is that a 10-12 inch Drone was the cause. They were flying the Drone inside and hit a sprinkler head resulting in aprox. 20,000 sf of Water Damage on 4 floors. Personnel on site said it took them approximately 45 minutes to find the water shut off which is a big factor in why on sprinkler head cause so much damage.
There are a couple of things to learn here. First, is take your Drone outside to fly it. Second, is Call SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin and ask about our Emergency Ready Program (ERP). It's a mobile application for your Smart Phone that is designed to assist in a situation just like this. We will assist with the install and add photos showing where all the shuts off are along with any important info you want your staff to know in the time of an Emergency.
Link - SERVPRO Emergency Ready Program App
This is a must have for all Commercial Proper Mangers, Maintenance Personnel and Engineers. If they would have had us set them up with our ERP, they would been able to shut the water off within minutes. A few swipes on their Smart Phone and they would have known exactly where to go for the water shutoff. Tap one more button and they would have been on the phone with us directly.
Give us a call, we will handle setting you up on our Emergency Ready Program.
Choosing a Fire Mitigation Company for Rebuild
Commercial Fire Loss
Choosing a Fire Mitigation Company for Rebuild
When you’re facing fire damage from a conflagration on your property, you aren’t just dealing with fire mitigation. You also have to deal with smoke damage, water damage, and reconstruction, not to mention replacement of any damaged or otherwise unsalvageable equipment. When you find yourself in this situation, you need to choose a fire remediation and mitigation company that can provide all your Austin, TX, services in one place.
Why One Company?
If you choose one company over several, you can consolidate your reconstruction and mitigation efforts in a single easy one-stop shop. Using one company can ensure:
• You only have to deal with one contractor for fire damage, smoke damage, and water damage
• An insurance adjuster only has to handle communication with one company
• You can shorten your restoration timeline with a single company that doesn’t have to coordinate with others
• You can reduce conflicts between different contractors
Attempting to marry all these services across multiple different contractors can cost you more money, as well. Some contractors have minimum base fees for jobs, as well as additional charges that can quickly rack up your bill when multiplied by multiple contractors. Choosing one company can significantly reduce the number of charges you face, and can make billing and payments much easier.
Finding the Right Company
Finding the right company after your business has dealt with fire damage can be difficult. Make sure to research companies in your area to find out what services they offer, and how other customers have rated them. Also check their certifications for remediation and recovery. A few other critical services you may want to check for are smoke odor cleanup, electronics restoration, and mold damage remediation – yes, mold. If you’ve suffered water damage from burst pipes or firefighters’ efforts, you may have standing water or saturated items that can quickly begin to grow mold.
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How To Use a Fire Extinguisher
You see them in office buildings, restaurants, schools, stores and just about every type of building you visit in Austin, TX. You may even have one in your workplace. A fire extinguisher is a common tool to help put out fires. They’re handy for the common person to use before the fire gets too large and out of control. If you know how to use an extinguisher, you can act when needed and help avoid major fire damage in a kitchen fire or other similar incidents. If you’ve never been trained to operate this important device, know is the time to learn. If you can remember PASS, knowing how to use a fire extinguisher is easy.
1. Pull. The first thing you want to do when operating a fire extinguisher to put out a fire is stand at the appropriate distance. Most extinguishers have a range of 6 to 20 feet, so make sure you know how far the one you have will reach. Next, you pull the pin in the extinguisher. Once you do this, you can move to the next step.
2. Aim the nozzle at the base of the fire. Some people think the best way to attack a kitchen fire or fire somewhere else in your home or building is to spray at the top of the flames. This won’t be effective, however. You must go for the base if you hope to smother it.
3. Squeeze the trigger. To avoid major fire damage in your house or whatever building you’re located in Austin, Tx you need to act quickly. In step three, simply squeeze the trigger firmly. This will release the agent inside the extinguisher and help put out the fire.
4. Go in a sweeping motion. Don’t move the device up and down. Instead, go from side to side until you have successfully put out the fire.
When you know how to use a fire extinguisher to put out a kitchen fire or other type, you can avoid major fire damage. You’ll also have the confidence to act without delay. Visit http://www.SERVPROhydeparkcentralaustin.com for more information on commercial fire damage.
Commercial Fire Damage and What to Know
Commercial Fire Damage and What to Know
There are a lot of problems that come from having fire damage in the home or business. If you have recently dealt with commercial fire damage, it is very important that you work with a fire restoration company to restore your home to order. This is something that you will find to be incredibly beneficial in many different ways. The experts will easily be able to take care of this for you, which is essential for when it comes to getting your home back on track. If you have recently dealt with fire damage or commercial fire damage, it is imperative that you call the fire restoration.
It does not matter if you have recently dealt with an electrical fire or a utility room fire, you still need to make sure that you are working with the Professionals in order to get the work done. They will be able to take care of the soot damage and smoke damage that was left behind. The smoke damage that was left behind can be a result of not having a fire sprinkler system or fire suppression system put into place. You will also find that many firefighters, after leaving with their fire trucks and fire hoses, recommend that you put in a fire sprinkler system or fire suppression system in order to ensure that your home is safe.
If you have recently dealt with an electrical fire or utility room fire, it is important that you also have an electrician come in and take care of the issues for you. You will also need a fire restoration expert who deals with commercial fire damage to install a fire sprinkler system or fire suppression system into your home or business. This is absolutely essential when it comes to the smoke damage that was left behind as well as the soot damage. You may also want to ask the firefighters who have come with their fire trucks and fire hoses what they recommend in terms of a fire sprinkler system and fire suppression system.
For anyone who has ever had fire damage in the home, it is imperative that you have experts who deal with fire restoration. You are also going to want to think about hiring a commercial fire damage professional in order to help with this type of work. They are able to handle an electrical fire or utility room fire that you have had in the home or business. They can also deal with the smoke damage that was left behind as well as soot damage.
The electrical fire and utility room fire that left behind soot damage is important for when you are hiring a fire damage expert. There are many firefighters out there who recommend that you hire a Professional Restoration company to get your home back to working order. They will use the best quality fire trucks and fire hoses to ensure that the fire is put out, but it is totally up to you to restore the damage after it has been done.
No matter what type of work you are doing, and no matter what type of fire trucks and fire hoses were used to put out the fire, it is important that restoration be done by an expert. Firefighters alone cannot take care of the restoration part for you, so it is important to hire a company local to your home that will be able to come out and deal with the issues for you. Not only is this going to save you a lot of time from having to do the work on your own, but it ensures that everything is done professionally so that your home and business is as safe as possible for you and your loved ones. Because there are so many different companies out there for you to hire, it pays to contact several of them so that you can get a few quotes before hiring any one of them.
Visit http://www.SERVPROhydeparkcentralaustin.com for more information on fire damage.
Dealing with a Commercial Fire Loss: Important Information for Business Owners
Dealing with a Commercial Fire Loss: Important Information for Business Owners
A fire can occur in the blink of an eye, leaving behind an array of emotions, terrible smoke smell and smoke damage, soot damage, and many other problems. Although seemingly devastating, knowing the right steps to take is valuable. Fire cleanup is important when you want to overcome the hurdles that you've been left with after fire damage or smoke damage. Whether you've experienced commercial fire damage, smoke damage, soot damage, or troubles in your home, having a plan of action ensures that you can recover from the tragedy quickly.
Fire in Home
After a fire in home, you're probably filled with anxiety, worry, and fear. A fire leaves a homeowner devastated, oftentimes wondering the right steps to take next. If you have experienced a fire in home, ensure the following steps are taken:
- After a fire in home, find a fire damage specialist to help you with fire cleanup. These specialists have the proper equipment and knowledge to get your home back in order once again.
- Do not enter the home until the fire department deems it safe to re-enter. Smoke damage, soot damage, the smoke smell, and an array of additional problems should be enough to keep you away until given the green light.
- Call your insurance company immediately after a fire in home that's left fire damage. The adjuster can help you begin the process of rebuilding, assisting with claims, fire cleanup, and more.
- Board up the windows of the home, and seal the doors to prevent unauthorized entrance into the home.
Fire in Business
A fire in business may cause financial devastation for some individuals. Rather than allow such drastic measures to happen, seeking the help of a fire damage restoration company is advisable. Fire in business, whether it is a smoke smell, soot damage, smoke damage, or worse, can seem like the end of the world, but the professionals offering fire damage restoration ensure there is hope and a bright future at the end of the day. A few additional tips to help you after commercial fire damage:
- Hire a commercial fire damage professional who is experienced in fire damage restoration at businesses. Fire cleanup is a long, tiring process, but one that you need completed quickly so you're not experiencing more hassles than necessary.
- Contact the insurance company to file a claim.
- Secure the premises so that no one can enter the facility. This is a primary concern after fire in a business.
Choosing a Fire Cleanup Specialist
Many fire damage restoration companies are out there. Don't hire the first name that comes your way and find yourself disappointed in the results. Instead, search for a professional who:
- Offers free estimates of the job. You can easily compare rates, services, and more. Choose a full-service company that offers soot damage cleanup, who can remove the smoke smell, and who handles other services that you might need during the cleanup process.
- Experience matters. Choose a company with at least a few years of experience underneath their belt.
- What is the reputation of the company? Hire a company that is recommended by others.
- Does the company offer commercial fire damage repair and residential damage, or only one or the other? If you have commercial fire damage, you obviously need a professional with expertise in the area, so choose wisely.
Fire damage recovery from a professional fire cleanup company ensures that you can salvage any items that were not ruined in the fire, helping you get back to life as you know it in a much faster time frame. Although you're likely filled with many emotions, you mustn't let those feelings stand in the way of repairing your home or business. Find a professional, and get your life back!
Visit http://www.SERVPROhydeparkcentralaustin.com for more information on fire loss.
Preventing Commercial Mold Damage is the Best Defense
Preventing Commercial Mold Damage is the Best Defense
Prevention is a better way to control mold damage than mold removal, which is why many mold removal services prefer to handle both remediation and mitigation simultaneously. When remediation occurs, professional mold removal services are able to control mold damage and restore a home or office to its former glory as well as provide mitigation services to help home and business owners learn the art of preventing mold in the home as well as commercial mold damage. Remediation and mitigation are so important to this process, but it’s the art of learning to prevent mold damage from occurring the first place that allows people to forgo the unpleasant experience of finding mold in the home or commercial mold damage.
Identify Problem Areas
If people recognized areas as problematic, no one would have mold in the home or commercial mold damage to deal with. No one would need mold removal services, and no one would require the help of a remediation and mitigation service. Before problems arise, learn to find the areas that might invite fungus and mildew to form. Bathrooms, basements, kitchens, closets, and other small, dark, damp places throughout the home are where fungus and mildew to go to make a home.
When fungus and mildew have a little bit of moisture, both can turn to mold. Mold is fungus that grows from spores in the air. These rooms certainly aren’t the only rooms in which mildew and fungus can grow, but these are the rooms that offer the most chance for survival. Any room that’s dark and moist with a high level of humidity is a perfect space for mold in the home to begin spreading.
Now that people are aware of the problem areas in the home or office, it’s time to prevent mold in the home and commercial mold damage from occurring in the first place. These rooms will form mold if they remain moist. It’s time to get rid of the source of moisture. That slow leak in a pipe, that drip in a faucet, or even the faulty ventilation system in a bathroom must go. Each must be repaired to make the area less inviting to mold spores and the issues they bring. If the humidity level is high, it’s time to remedy that. Smart thermostats make it easy for homeowners to keep the humidity level in check.
Learn to Recognize the Signs
No matter what home and business owners do to prevent mold from occurring, there is always a chance more mold might grow in other areas or even in areas no one expects. If someone suspects mold might be a problem, there is one thing to check for. A smelly odor that has no apparent source could mean mold. Mold damage does provide a smelly odor, specifically as it begins to spread. The smelly odor in question might be slightly damp smelling, but it’s still a smelling odor. Deodorization isn’t a problem in the home, but deodorization is not enough to get rid of a mold issue that’s forming. The best option homeowners have is to get rid of the smell using deodorization but to also search for the cause of the smell. It’s a mistake to assume deodorization masking this odor is enough.
Now that more people are aware of what to look for and how to prevent mold from occurring, it’s time for them to take control of homes and offices. If mold is found, it’s imperative they call for professional remediation. These companies use the correct tools and equipment to dry a home or office and prevent mold from reoccurring. They are faster, more efficient, and they’re more capable of putting a stop to the spread of mold throughout the home or office before it becomes out of control and more damaging to flooring and walls as well as preventing a smelly odor.
Visit http://www.SERVPROhydeparkcentralaustin.com for more information on mold removal and remediation.
Managing Water Damage in a Business
Managing Water Damage in a Business
Running a business is often a complicated process that requires a careful and skilled focus on vital issues. Unfortunately, many problems can severely impact the operation of your business and make it run inefficiently. For example, water damage can occur when a pipe bursts or if a river or lake floods and sends water rushing through your doors.
Flood damage like this is a grave concern, as water in business centers can be devastating. While you may not lose everything like those who suffer from water in home areas, you can lose a lot. Here is what you need to know about this problem and the different ways that it can be managed through drying, water cleanup, mitigation, and restoration procedures.
How Does Water Damage Occur in a Business?
So just how can water damage impact your business? There are many different ways, including flood damage from rain waters and serious plumbing disasters. Just think of your basement and all the pipes located down there. If these pipes burst open, water could get all over your delicate items and require serious drying and restoration procedures.
What are the chances that this problem could affect you? The risks aren't probably that high, but when it does happen, drying and mitigation are going to save your business from a near total loss. This reality is especially true when water cleanup helps protect delicate areas of your business from failure or the kind of destruction that could ruin you.
Is It Serious?
The severity of this situation all depends on where your flood damage or water damage occur. Usually, though, it is going to be a grave concern. As we mentioned above, a burst pipe in your basement could severely damage paperwork or furniture you have stored in that area. However, a burst pipe or damage from a sprinkler could cause a serious concern even in your business areas.
For example, imagine the kind of problems that would happen if enough water fell on top of your computer systems or your networking area. Water damage to these areas could cause them to breakdown or ultimately fail. When that happens, you're likely to lose information stored on them. However, some mitigation and restoration process may be able to help there.
Can It Affect My Profits?
Water in business buildings and even water in home areas can be far-reaching and can affect your profits. For example, water in business buildings will make it impossible for you to open up certain areas of your business. For example, you may be forced to close down your entryway until water cleanup and restoration procedures can get it back into shape. These methods include:
Finding damaged areas
Assessing the problem
Deciding if it can be saved
Restoring it if possible
Tearing it out if it cannot be saved
Discussing the replacement procedures with you
Carefully installing new replacement items
That's why it is important to get to work drying the area and contacting restoration experts right away. Their mitigation skills can help keep your business from suffering the kind of fate that water in home areas often causes, such as total loss. You can beat this problem and keep your business looking great for years to come.
If your business is suffering from water damage, water in business problems, or even water in home areas near your business, you need to contact us right away. We are a water cleanup company that will perform the necessary mitigation and restoration procedures to get your business back into shape quickly and efficiently.
Don't forget that one of our specialties is flood damage in business areas like yours. Not only that, but we are skilled at identifying the best mitigation and water cleanup methods for your needs. With the help of our drying tools, you can repair flood damage, keep water in business problems to a minimum, and get back to work as soon as possible. Visit http://www.SERVPROhydeparkcentralaustin.com for more information on commercial water loss.
Commercial Fire Damage Cleanup and Repair
Commercial Fire Damage Cleanup and Repair
Going through the trauma of having a fire in home or fire in business is something no one wants to experience. The loss of property from smoke damage, soot damage and fire damage is devastating, and if anyone in the family suffers injury or suffocation from strong smoke smell, getting your house back to normal after the unfortunate fire in home incident is sometimes delayed. After the horrifying experience from fire damage, it takes time for families to regroup, settle down, and think about repairs and fire damage restoration for your home. But once things are stabilized you need to work your way through the following steps.
The most crucial step is to seek help from fire cleanup professionals. It is best not to enter the house until the fire department tells you it is safe to do so. Families should stay out of the home until fire cleanup officials assure them the fire is out and the smoke smell is completely clear.
Fire cleanup professionals will also inspect the house for any potential dangers, such as hanging lumber, blocked walkways, and broken glass. The fire department will advise families of the damage the house has sustained from both the soot damage and smoke damage.
It is entirely possible that fire cleanup officials will restrict the family from re-entering the house for an unknown amount of time, especially when fire damage restoration is still in progress. Once you have let your extended family know what happened and assured them that things are under control, it is time to call your insurance company.
You need to make contacting your representative a priority. Your insurance agent will document the damage, assist you in finding lodging, and calculate your emergency living expenses. The agent will also estimate the cost of clean-up. Do not underestimate the cost in all fire damage restoration endeavors.
If you rent, call the landlord and report what has occurred so that he is aware of the fire in home.
The fire department will write a "fire report" that will contain information about the fire in home, notably the damage to the property, smoke damage, soot damage, resources destroyed, pungent smoke smell if any and other pertinent information.
This document will be an invaluable record of the incident. If necessary, homeowners may procure a copy of the report to get an idea of the full extent of the fire damage.
Depending on the damage done to your home, emergency services may require you to cordon off your property to discourage trespassers and keep people safely away from the dwelling. In most cases, insurance companies require this action.
If your house is damaged, before any work takes place you will want to clean the inside of your home to prepare it for repair. In some cases, a professional cleaning service might be necessary as the smoke smell can become unbearable; this is a good topic to discuss with your insurance agent.
Take these things into consideration before you make your final decision to restore your home, leave your home, or sell:
· the extent of the damage
· the amount of work to be done to clean up the smoke damage and soot damage
· living situations
· insurance coverage
· status of mortgage
Once you have the go-ahead from your insurance company, you need to decide if the damage to your home is more than a layman can handle.If it seems insurmountable, call a fire damage restoration and clean-up company. You can find local businesses online, but there are a few tips you need to know concerning how to find the right professional for your job.
1. The faster you get a cleanup crew into your house the easier it will be to get rid of strong odors, Ashes from the fire discolor everything in the home, and metal will tarnish. Every day these problems get worse if not quickly addressed.
2. Depend on the crew helping you because they have done this before. The experts know what can be restored and what can't.
3. All professional cleaning and restoration businesses will be:
· prompt, detailed, time efficient
· available at any time
· licensed, insured, and bonded
· industry certified
· up-to-date and properly maintained equipment
· knowledge of the full spectrum of restoration needs
· able to work with your insurance company
Many restoration professionals are also capable of repairing damage to:
· carpet (in some cases installation included)
· business offices
It may be that many of your personal papers and physical files burn as a result of your house fire. Replacing items like birth certificates, passports, and other documents means you will need to call government, federal and state, departments to get notarized copies of your important papers.
Commercial Fire Damage
The same principles apply when there is fire in business premises. Restoration companies know that when a business has experienced commercial fire damage and water damage from fire hoses, business owners need to get things clean and up-and-running as soon as possible. Time is money and business owners can suffer insurmountable losses if commercial fire damage is not taken care of promptly.
Cleaning and repair companies are trained, experienced, and have access to the right equipment to manage the job and put out fire in business establishments promptly. Restoration crews are fast in their response and will see the work through to the end. They are fully aware that a business cannot shut down because of damage from fire in business premises.
Call SERVPRO if you suffer from home fire damage or commercial fire damage. Visit http://www.SERVPROhydeparkcentralaustin.com for more information on fire damage.
Does your personnel and venders know who to call in the event of Commercial Water loss?
ERP App - One Click Away
Janitors, fire control vendors, elevator vendors and many others can cause damage to a commercial building both in process of working, as well as by mistake. We recently were activated late on a Sunday to help on a water damage caused by a vendor mistakenly leaving a water faucet on over the weekend. That vendor called an unfamiliar mitigation company causing further delays in response time. Having all vendors aware of who is your preferred vendor for disaster response is very important. This is very easily accomplished with the SERVPRO Emergency Ready Plan mobile application (ERP for short). The ERP is a great tool for afterhours when staffing is light. The app allows you/us to take photos and label important things such as points of entry, shut off valves, drains. The possibilities are only limited by your imagination. SERPVRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin will help you set this up free of charge. Then when disaster strikes, we are one click away!
Commercial Building - Multi Story Loss
SERVPRO is on site
In a commercial setting a top down loss can be devastating to the building owners, management group and of course the tenants. Recently SERVPRO Hyde Park/Central Austin responded to a commercial loss originating on the fifth floor. The water migration path passed through the fourth floor and stopped on the third. We were able to determine the migration path with the use of infrared imaging technology and verify our findings with moisture content readings. Once all the affected areas are properly identified, a drying plan can be put in place. In this instance, SERVPRO Hyde Park/Central Austin placed sixty air movers and fifteen dehumidifiers to begin the drying process. An important note for all parties involved, while the equipment may be a temporary nuisance, it is better than the secondary damage. By leaving the drying equipment running as continuously as possible, it will shorten the duration it must remain on site. More than likely the drying equipment can be removed within three to five days.
Emergency Ready Profile for Commercial Property Managers
ERP as simple as tapping the icon
Do you manage commercial property? Does all your staff or on call personnel know where all the shutoffs are located? Do you have a vendor ready selected who knows your building as well as your staff. SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin can help.
You need to check our FREE Emergency Ready Profile app. Free to you we will come out and set up your property using our mobile device app. We will ask you lots of questions and then load all your preferences right into the app so it all can be shared with your entire staff and our personnel.
Image you have a water loss on a Sunday afternoon. You open the app and simply tap the icon and you are on the phone with our on call staff. If you have a particular area for access our staff already know that. They will also have a photo of the designated are for easy recognition.
If you staff is busy and need assistance accessing areas to mitigate the loss our staff will be able to immediately start assisting with all the data that in mobile app.
This is a FREE service to you for you and your people. We can also set you up so you can add and modify all the data you want to put in the mobile application. Call us today we come out and give you a live demonstration and did I mention its FREE. Don't delay.
Commercial Drying – Secondary Damage
More often than not a large commercial building has one or more spaces which either is currently unoccupied, or rarely used. These spaces suffer considerable damage when moisture goes unnoticed for a couple days or longer. This type of loss will often have what is called "Secondary Damage". The humidity can get so high it that condensation will form on all the walls and ceiling.
A situation like this creates a challenge in determining just how wet the structure really is. The condensation will also cause inaccurate moisture readings in building materials not directly impacted by the water source. So all the walls and ceiling that never came into direct contact with the water source will read 100% saturated. As you can imagine this can create challenges for the untrained person as well as an inaccurate scope of work needed.
SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin recommends if you have a space like this in your building make sure to have it viewed at least once a day!
Commercial Property Managers and Engineer Training at SERVPRO Hyde Park / Central Austin
SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin recently had the pleasure of hosting a wonderful group of commercial property managers and engineers. In this industry education goes a long way when dealing with tenants. We were able to educate our guests on how to properly identify and scope potential water damages, identify hidden concerns and address the infamous mold question. Along the way, the group was able to tour our facility to see Esporta machine we use for textile cleaning from fire as well as our Ultrasonic cleaning line. Once our training was complete we allowed our guests to utilize our train room for a meeting of their own. It worked out great for everyone.
Feel free to contact us directly if you are interested in learning more about services or educational training.....Who knows, maybe we will buy you all lunch.
Water Damage that is difficult to Dry
Gym at a local Austin, TX school
When you call SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin for a water loss we don't just come out and demo everything out. We follow IICRC S500 the industry standards for water damage. Our responsibility in mitigating your loss is to limit any further damages. Damages are not always caused by the water. Sometimes the service company deems everything non salvageable and removes everything that is wet causing more damage than the water.
The industry has been slowly migrating to drying materials in place limiting the need for repairs once your house is dried out. Our team has been practicing these methods for over 15 years now.
Sometimes this calls for some creative drying methods especially on commercial jobs where demolition may not be an option and time is critical. We can often dry difficult to reach moisture by adding containment, tenting or specialized drying equipment that can inject air.
You can see some of this type of drying on our Facebook page. Be sure to read the photo captions.
SERVPRO Top Chili Pepper at Annual AAFAME Chili Slam
Top Chili Pepper
SERVPRO of Hyde Park / Central Austin is the top sponsor, TOP CHILI PEPPER, at the 24th Annual Chili Slam. This is a members only event for AAFAME & BOMA members. This appreciation day is held at Krieg Field on April 29, 2016. There will be a Chili cook off and plenty of other things to eat. Lots of competitions, horseshoes, washers are among some of the favorites.
Those who have attended never miss another one! Travis who is one of the partners here, has been attending for years. He and another teammate take part in the Horseshoe competition every year. They have taken 1st place in 2009, 2nd place in 2012, 1st place in 2014, and 1st place in 2015. Let see if they can do it again this year.