Archived Blog Posts
Here Is What You Should Do With Your Electronics After a Fire
If your home is affected by fire damage, don't hesitate and call the pros at SERVPRO for your fire damage cleanup and restoration needs.
After A Fire, Here's What You Should Do With Your Electronics.
One devastating side effect of a fire could be the loss of your possessions. As you try to navigate what the smoke damage might have done to your home in Bagdad, AZ, it is often difficult to tell if your electronics, which might look like they survived unscathed, are ready to be used in the aftermath. A fire cleanup service is extremely important. Let professionals guide you to make sure you can avoid another disaster and save as many of your possessions as possible.
1. Make Sure They’re Unplugged
After making absolutely certain you’re safe and it’s okay to do, unplug your appliances. You don’t want to accidentally turn them on, because this might cause a short circuit and it might lead to damage even fire cleanup professionals can’t help with.
2. Don’t Turn Them On
It can be tempting to turn on your electronics after a fire, especially if you use them to connect with friends or family. Turning them on before getting them professionally cleaned by a qualified technician is a bad idea, however, since they might have smoke residue. This, in turn, might cause damage to the device. It might also be hazardous to you.
3. Wipe Them Off
You should never handle electronics that are turned on or plugged in after a fire. If you can make sure your electronics are completely off and unplugged, however, it might be a wise idea to wipe them off with a clean cloth. The sooner you do this, the more likely a device is to survive.
4. Look for Your Warranty Records
Sometimes, it’s impossible for your electronics to recover after a fire. However, your electronics may be covered by their warranty.
Once you’re done, remember to call a professional fire cleanup service. Its agents are there to help your electronics recover from smoke damage and to make the transition back into normal life a little easier for you.
How Aid is Assessed After a Flood
When your home is flooded as the result of a natural disaster, FEMA can probably help.
When a natural disaster causes widespread destruction, the Federal Emergency Management Agency often steps in to provide assistance and aid to those displaced by the aftermath of the storm. If your home in Yavapai County is damaged by flooding, FEMA may send a housing inspector to assess your property. What follows is a thorough walkthrough that can result in receiving federal assistance for putting your home back together.
When inspectors arrive at your home, they document everything that needs to be repaired or replaced. If there is a lot of damage, this could take a while. They make a detailed list of problems, such as:
• Soaked carpet
• Ruined walls
• Damaged cabinets
• Destroyed items, such as furniture
They take pictures of your home and write down the extent of the problem. For example, if is completely soaked through, they include how many square feet of carpet was affected. The more details they can report, the better FEMA is able to assess your need.
One thing that the inspector will need from you is proof that you own the home. This can be problematic if your deed was destroyed by the storm and you don't have a copy on hand. Getting the paperwork from the appropriate office will have to happen before you are eligible to receive any of the aid that the inspector says you qualify for.
The government inspector is not the only person who needs to assess your property. Your insurance company will likely send an adjuster, and if there are repairs to be done, you should call a flood remediation company so that repairs can begin as soon as possible.
When your home is flooded as the result of a natural disaster, FEMA can probably help. All that is needed is a thorough inspection and proof that you own the home for the inspector to determine whether or not you qualify for aid.
How To Save Your Plants From Mildew
Few things bring life to your home in Yavapai County the way houseplants do. Plants clean the air and brighten up the room. Sometimes, plants get sick, though. The white powdery substance you find on the leaves is plant mildew. As long as your plant is not already dead, however, there is still hope to save it. Unlike mold remediation, you can probably remedy the problem yourself with some extra care. Here are six tips to help prevent or save your plants from mildew.
1. Move the plant outside. The air inside your home tends to be more stagnant than the fresh air outside. Increasing air flow can help control the moisture that led to the mildew growth.
2. Remove infected areas and debris. Some parts of the plant may not be able to be salvaged, so you can prune those parts off. Remove any leaves or debris that are crowding the plant.
3. Spray plant with mildewcide. There are products that are specifically formulated to combat plant mildew. Avoid harsher chemicals, especially if the plant is meant to be edible.
4. Water the plant at the roots. One of the causes of mildew on plants is excess moisture on the leaves. The effects of rain are often counteracted by the rays of the sun, but indoor conditions cannot compensate for frequent watering from above.
5. Introduce it to the sun. Sunshine has a natural drying effect on the leaves of a plant. It also infuses important nutrients that support overall health into the plant's cells.
6. Disinfect tools. If you used your gardening tools on your infected plant, chances are that some of the mildew escaped onto the tools. To be safe, disinfect your tools with mildewcide before using them again.
If you want to prevent plant mildew, monitor the moisture and air flow around the plant. If your plant already has mildew, taking these steps can save its life.
4 Tips for Maintaining Fire Sprinklers at Your Business
To remain helpful and protective of a business, fire sprinklers need proper care. Without it, these systems can instead become detrimental. For example, it could potentially go off without a fire and lead to water damage. Active sprinkler maintenance for your Yavapai County, AZ, business can be accomplished by following four tips.
1. Keep Sprinkler Heads Clean and Unhampered
If you have painting done on the ceiling, be sure to keep the sprinklers protected from the paint until the process is done. The coating can dry and restrict the unit from allowing water to escape. This can lead to flooding in the ceiling when you need water spread around the room.
Sprinklers become dirty if not regularly cleaned, especially in areas where the air is often inhabited by chemicals or grease. If you are not comfortable doing this using a nondamaging degreasing solution, you can have them cleaned by a professional.
2. Complete an Extensive Inspection of the System
Central to sprinkler maintenance, a yearly inspection by a professional can catch problems that may otherwise be invisible. These inspections are thorough and can identify pipe leaks, improperly fitted components or damaged sensors that could lead to a failure to deploy or accidental discharge.
3. Keep the Sprinklers Clear of Obstructions
Blocked fire sprinklers are a danger and safety code violation. Ceilings should be kept clear a few feet around the sprinkler so it can function properly. Unobstructed flow also prevents water buildup inside that leads to unnecessary damage to the sprinkler system.
4. Ensure Valves Are Open and Have Pressure
Water valves need to be regularly checked that they are open. Without water flow, sprinkler systems obviously cannot work. A professional can ensure sprinklers are open and receiving appropriate water pressure.
Maintain Your Business in All Circumstances
Regardless if it’s fire or water damage, a professional damage restoration crew can stop sprinkler damage from irreparably harming your business property. Proper sprinkler maintenance incurs expenses early on to prevent even costlier cleanup in the future. Water and fire damage can be mitigated with proper action.
Bathroom Supply Lines: What They Are and How Often To Replace Them
A little prevention may go a long way to keeping water where it belongs:
What Are Bathroom Supply Lines And How Often Should They Be Replaced?
From the municipal water supply in Prescott Valley, AZ, to a home’s plumbing system and out through the faucet, water passes through a lot of pipes, hoses, and tubes to make its way into your hands. One of these is a supply line that brings the water from your home’s plumbing and into individual appliances and fixtures that use water, such as a bathroom sink or toilet. Supply lines are located in so many places in a home that supply line damage can be a big deal.
What Is a Supply Line?
Supply lines are made of an inner polymer lining, covered in a braided stainless-steel sleeve. The rubber or plastic tube keeps the water contained, while the steel sleeve maintains the strength the polymer lining needs to withstand water pressure. Even with good manufacturing and materials, supply line damage can still occur, leading to an event like a bathroom leak. Damage can be caused by the following:
- Corrosion caused by chlorine
- Corrosion from household cleaners
How Do Supply Lines Fail?
The most common way a supply line fails is when the steel sleeve corrodes, the metal strands breaking one by one until there is enough of a gap for the lining to poke through and balloon outwards. The polymer lining can’t withstand the water pressure, and this causes it to burst, leaking water. Depending on where this supply line leak occurs, the damage could be merely an annoyance or an outright disaster.
What Should You Look For?
One of the best ways to prevent a leak like this is to keep an eye out for damage and replace supply lines about every three years. Signs of a possible problem would be the appearance of crimps or kinks in the line, pitting or corrosion on the braided steel, or a bubble in the hose. Catching a potential problem before it becomes a problem is often the most surefire way to avoid damages.
Suffering the effects of supply line damage can be costly. However, a little prevention may go a long way to keeping water where it belongs: inside the pipes.
The Difference Between Mold Removal and Mold Remediation
SERVPRO offers services to prevent and remediate mold attacking at home.
Mold Removal vs. Mold Remediation: What's the Difference?
Experts claim there are more than 100 types of mold bacteria inside the average home in Yava, AZ. Colonies can include yellow, orange, green, and black mold. How is that possible? Many common fungus spores are found in cars, homes, offices, and outdoors because the fungi are constantly floating about in the air. The microscopic bacteria can enter any building through doors and windows, but the spores can also find a way inside homes on pet fur, shoes, and clothing. Once the spore plants itself onto a potential life source, it begins growing into a colony and eventually becomes large enough to be seen and destroyed.
Mold cleanup, removal, and remediation are often terms used synonymously, but they are not the same. Completely removing mold is considered an impossible task because the spores float in the air and land almost everywhere. For this reason, a mold removal team can only clean existing mold from items within your home. Moments later, the bacterial spores, including black mold, often return.
Companies specializing in mold cleanup and remediation tend to offer more than removal services. With specialized training and equipment, the mold remediation team can locate the mold, assess the problem, and contain the area. The professionals often employ large air movers, HEPA air scrubbers, and dehumidifiers to remove any water that is contributing to the mold problem. Once the moisture is gone, existing mold colonies can be eradicated by getting rid of moldy materials. Items often include carpets, drywall, and wood.
The affected area may need an application of disinfectant or fungicide to eliminate any remaining microscopic spores and prevent future mold. The need to disinfect is especially true with materials that can be salvaged but have been near mold-infested items. Since black mold can be a concern, disinfecting the whole room may also be an option. Mold remediation specialists can also answer questions on how to prevent mold from attacking in the future.
Flood Safety for First Responders
Have proper flood gear.
Flood Protection for First Responders
As a first responder in Cottonwood, AZ, flooding is one of the most challenging situations you may encounter. It’s crucial to be prepared beforehand, so familiarize yourself with these tips:
- Ensure you have the necessary vaccinations.
- Have proper flood gear.
- Prepare for safety risks.
- Know post-flood protocol.
There are two CDC-required vaccinations for first responders. A tetanus booster is required unless you have received one in the last decade. If you’re at risk of contact with biohazards, a hepatitis B vaccine is also necessary.
Flood Response Gear
Appropriate gear is crucial for a first responder. Tall rubber boots, gloves, safety goggles, floatation devices and masks are usual essentials, but your state’s health department may have more recommendations.
Know the Risks
There are various safety hazards to watch out for after a flood.
• Although drowning is an obvious hazard, the risk factors may not be as apparent. It only takes a few inches of water to impair a vehicle’s ability to drive or carry you away on foot.
• Electricity poses a serious risk. The flood water itself may be charged due to power line damage. Electrical equipment may also be wet, so be cautious of touching it.
• Flood water may be contaminated by chemicals or waterborne diseases. Make sure your gear can protect you from these risks, and wash your hands often.
• Wild animals, particularly snakes or rodents, may take refuge in buildings. Any animal bite requires immediate medical attention.
• Flooded areas are prime conditions for mold and mildew to develop. Dispose of mold-contaminated material according to local protocol. You may also consider consulting a team of mold experts.
After your work is done, always shower and disinfect your gear to prevent further contamination.
Also consider a medical screening once your flood response work has been completed, especially if you’ve been exposed to contaminants or develop new symptoms.
While your duty as a first responder is to aid flood victims, it’s equally important to take precautions for yourself. Following protocols and knowing the hazards you may encounter will ensure not only your own safety but will enable you to continue the brave task of helping others.
What To Do With Your Electronics After a House Fire
Do not use electrical equipment that has been exposed by heat.
After experiencing a home fire in Prescott, AZ, you might feel overwhelmed trying to figure out what in your home is still salvageable and what needs to be thrown out for good. If any of your electronics have been affected by smoke, fire, or water, you might assume they’ll be too damaged to function. However, with the help of a fire cleanup company, your electronics can potentially be cleaned and restored to working condition. For the best chances of saving your items, keep in mind the following tips.
Important Tips for Handling Electronics Right After a Fire
While a professional can potentially clean your electronics and save them from harm, it is important you handle all electronics correctly to prevent causing irreversible damage or even harming yourself.
- Never turn on or use an electrical device you feel has experienced water, fire, or smoke damage
- If possible, unplug all electronics and appliances
- Avoid handling electronics visibly burned by fire
- Locate warranty records
- Don’t attempt to clean electronics yourself
- Immediately contact a professional for assistance
The Electronics Fire Cleanup Process
The first step a restoration specialist will take when attempting to restore your electronics is to perform a surface clean of the device. They will wipe the exterior of devices to prevent more damage from occurring and will carefully clean all metal components. They’ll also use a vacuum to fully remove all ash and soot.
After assessing the amount of damage to the device, the specialist will back up data if possible. This can involve transferring data to a completely new device or storing it using a cloud storage solution. Once this is complete, they’ll make any necessary repairs to restore the device.
Your electronics may be very valuable or contain important information you don’t want to lose. With the help of a fire cleanup specialist, it is possible your electronics can be saved even after a house fire.
6 Tips for Saving Belongings Damaged by Water
Water damage in a Prescott Valley, AZ home.
How Do You Clean Belongings Damaged by Water?
If you have water in your home in Prescott Valley, AZ, chances are you'll have to deal with damage to the house itself as well as some of your belongings. Some furnishings, electronics and valuables may be salvageable if you follow the right steps.
1. Rinse: A broken pipe can release dirty water into your house. If your belongings are covered in silt, dirt and other debris, you need to rinse them off with clean water before you can start the cleanup process.
2. Clean: How you clean belongings depend on the materials they're made from. Electronics, for example, should not be submerged in water. You may need to use dry cleaning to start repairing delicate objects. Other items can be put through a washing machine.
3. Dry: Once the initial cleaning has been taken care of, you need to make sure your possessions are properly dried out. If you return a wet item back into your home, you may be reintroducing excess moisture.
4. Disinfect: Some objects may need to be cleaned again after they have been dried out. Water in the home can lead to mold growth, but you can combat this by disinfecting any affected belongings.
5. Repair: Water can cause some objects to start to degrade or break. If this is the case for your piece of art or electronic device, you may need to have a professional water remediation team help you with the repair. Most items should not be fixed until they have been cleaned and dried.
6. Replace: In some situations, your furnishings may be too far gone to repair. In this case, it may be best for you to replace the items that have sustained too much damage.
As you get rid of standing water in your home, you'll need to address structural issues and damage to your belongings. Cleaning and repairing any items you can may help save you money on your water repair project.
How To Minimize Moisture During a Storm
Proper containment cause help minimize moisture.
When storms rage in Prescott Valley, AZ, your commercial property is in danger of rain damage. Ideally, your roof can withstand a rainstorm, but it doesn't hurt to have a backup plan in case moisture sneaks past the roof. By having a strong building envelope, you can minimize the amount of moisture that seeps in during the storm, thereby limiting its damage potential.
Elements of a Solid Envelope
During a storm, water tries to get into your building in any way that it can. There are several factors that must be controlled to combat water damage from heavy rains:
- Airflow to prevent stagnation
- Evaporation that gets trapped within the building
- Insulation to resist extreme temperatures
- Proper drainage to divert water away from areas vulnerable to mold growth
Rain damage is of particular concern to property owners because if left unattended, it can lead to black mold, which requires professional remediation. By having a strong building envelope, you can lower your risk of damage.
Quality construction certainly plays a role in how your commercial property resists outside elements. For example, if mortar joints or wall flashing is not installed correctly or installation is sloppy, they are more likely to let water seep in. It's not enough, however, to build a strong envelope and then leave it. Your building needs regular inspection and maintenance to ensure that its water resistance remains strong. Inspections should be conducted to look for cracks in any of the exterior walls. Roof damage should be repaired in a timely manner. Windows should be inspected for cracks where water can get into the building.
Rain damage can lead to many problems, such as compromised structural integrity or black mold growth. To prevent these problems, you need a good building envelope. Taking the steps to make sure your property is rain resistant is an essential part of commercial property ownership.
4 Steps To Clean Up Commercial Roof Leaks
Roof damaged due to severe storm in Prescott, AZ.
4 Steps To Clean Up Commercial Roof Leaks
When there is a roof leak at a commercial location, the owner or manager of a building should pursue damage mitigation, roof repair and restoration. Here are four steps to take sooner rather than later to restrict the amount of damage caused by the leaking roof of a building located in Prescott, AZ.
1. Find the Leak
Locating the source of the leak may involve tracing dripping water up through the ceiling of a structure to the attic. A top-down approach might start with the part of the attic immediately under missing shingles. If a property owner or manager cannot find the source, damage restoration professionals may be able to identify the course water is taking.
2. Mitigate Water Damage
It may be necessary to collect water from a roof leak on one or more levels of a structure. Mitigation is a term used to describe any measures that reduce the amount of water in a structure. If roof repair cannot take place immediately, tarping over a roof keeps out additional water.
3. Fix the Leak
Mitigation measures are only temporary fixes. Restoration cannot get underway until a damaged roof is fixed. The sooner roof repair takes place, the better the outcome of water damage restoration.
4. Restore Water Damage
Once the source of water in a structure has been eliminated, disinfection and drying can take place. These measures are essential to reduce the risk of a mold infestation after a roof leak.
These four steps may be easier said than done, as it can be difficult to locate the precise source of a roof leak in a building in Prescott, AZ. Damage mitigation and restoration specialists know what to look for and may also use thermal imaging technology. Any measures that reduce the exposure of building materials and contents to leaking water will limit the severity of the damage.
Understanding Black Mold: What It Is and Why It Grows
Mold damaged floor after a flood.
Black mold, known scientifically as Stachybotrys chartarum, is a toxic form of mold that must be removed by a team of professional mold remediators. Here's a fast guide to what it is and why it may inhabit your residence in Prescott, AZ.
What It Is
Originally discovered in Prague by mold researcher August Carl Joseph Corda in 1837, this dangerous form of mold is often found:
- Around toilets
- Inside showers
- Within kitchens
- Inhabiting basements
It can also be found in drywall, under tiles, and on windows. It has a distinctive musty odor and is sometimes green in addition to black. Because it produces mycotoxins, it must be removed immediately.
Why It Grows
Although it's relatively uncommon, black mold spreads quickly. With a growth rate of one square inch per day, it can cover several feet in less than a week. When this happens, swift mold remediation becomes imperative, as even a slight delay can severely compound the problem.
Moisture is the culprit for why it appears. Pipe leaks, floods, and improper ventilation are examples of common triggers. Once it latches onto fibrous materials, such as wood, it begins to take hold. Reduce the odds of this happening by making sure vents are on and properly working when showering and cooking.
Although 70 degrees Fahrenheit is the ideal temperature for growth, it can still appear during the cold winter months. Discourage the growth of toxic mold by limiting humidity levels to no greater than 50 percent.
Once the fungal nuisance starts to develop, spores can become airborne. When this happens, they attach themselves to everything, including people and pets. This facilitates spread, further compounding its advancement. Because spores are microscopic, you may be unaware that you're carrying them with you, including to your neighbor's home and anywhere you're shopping.
The moment you notice black mold in your home, contact a mold cleanup specialist to handle the matter. The faster you act, the less of a headache it will be.
Here Are the Rules of Playing With Candles
Electric candles are way safer than their traditional counterparts.
Here Are the Rules of Playing With Candles
Candles may smell and look pretty, but they also one of the leading causes of house fires. While there are safer alternatives with even better scents in the market, people still buy more of them every year. So, if you have to play with candle fire, here are the rules.
- Never leave candles unattended
- Candle placement is crucial
- Consider using flameless candles
Blow Candles When You Leave the Room
It’s surprising how many candle fire incidents happen in Prescott, AZ, despite all the sensitization efforts. Usually, these accidents occur when the victim walks out on a burning candle and gets distracted elsewhere. A curious child or pet goes to investigate and ends up tipping the wax light. The flame gets into contact with the table cloth, and a fire breaks out.
Place Candles Wisely
The safest place to leave a candle is in the middle of a stable table. It will be in front of you the whole time, so there’s little risk of a fire incident. Avoid placing wax lights near windows where the wind could blow the curtains towards the flame. Also, move any flammable items such as papers, clothes and combustible liquids. That will save you from a potential smoke cleanup or even worse.
Consider Using Flameless Candles
Electric candles are way safer than their traditional counterparts. You can leave them on for as long as you wish and still find everything as you left it. Some brands have also added popular candle scents so you can get the exact experience of using the real thing. They are an excellent candle alternative for families and pet parents.
There is no doubt candles are romantic, and they add a homey feeling to any space. Even so, a candle fire is a significant threat and should be treated as such. Use these rules to stay safe and also consider switching to safer alternatives.
Oil Furnace Puffback Damage Requires Expert Cleaning
Puffback damage in Prescott, AZ.
Many businesses in Prescott, AZ use oil for heat. While the price of oil can fluctuate, it’s been an excellent source of heat in this region. While modern furnaces are very safe, as they age, they can experience serious problems, such as puffback damage.
What Is A Puffback?
If you don’t know, congratulations! Hopefully, you’ll never find out. Here are the symptoms of a puffback and what to do about it.
A Furnace Puffback Is Always Bad
Puffbacks can happen in gas furnaces, but they’re typically associated with an oil furnace. It means something serious went wrong with your furnace, and if the puffback is large, the puffback damage itself may destroy your furnace.
The results of a puffback can be ominous:
- Widespread soot damage
- Toxic fume release
- Combustion chamber explosion
If you’re around the furnace when it happens, it can even be dangerous. But you may get some advance notice if you pay attention.
Signs of a Furnace Puffback Risk
The most common sign that your furnace may have a puffback is a knocking or booming sound when the combustion chamber ignites. It’s normally a pretty smooth sound, so if you notice it, you should have your furnace inspected immediately.
Another sign is an increasing odor of burning fuel. Rarely, you may get a slight diesel fume odor from your furnace, but if it’s happing daily, it certainly needs servicing.
After a Furnace Puffback
Soot is a horrid mess of toxic residue and oils. It sticks to everything and stubbornly resists typical smoke cleaning. A puffback in a business is a disaster and may be covered by your commercial insurance policy.
Unless the release of soot was very minimal, you’re going to need professional smoke damage experts to restore your business. They use custom cleaning agents and have been certified by the IICRC to use them safely. Cleaning agents found in hardware stores just aren’t up to the job and may cause more damage than good.
Puffback damage should always be treated seriously. Your furnace will need an immediate inspection, and you’ll have to remove heavy soot before you’ll be allowed to reopen.
5 Ways To Reduce Flood Damage To Your Commercial Building
Facility damaged by a storm.
Five Ways To Mitigate Flood
The FEMA calculator estimates that one inch of flooding can cost owners up to $25,000 in damages. Commercial owners in Prescott, AZ must also consider that as they pay for restoration, the operation may have come to a halt, waiting for the property to become functional again. To save time and money, it's best to take a proactive approach, avoiding water accumulation. The following are five ways to mitigate flood devastation.
1. Check Plumbing Lines
Owners may not realize that flood damage may occur from backups within the gutters and plumbing lines. Sewage water, for instance, may push into the premises as the water level increases outside. The Category three fluid houses a plethora of bacteria. Be sure to have experts check the backflow valve and sump pump annually.
Also, if leaves and debris clog gutters, they cannot function as they should. Rather than drawing the flow away from the structure, it could allow it to filter inside. Consistently check this area, clearing it out as needed.
2. Consider Property Placement
Most flooding impacts the lower zones before the upper regions. Think about where you store expensive or essential pieces. If a major storm hits, water buildup could ruin anything on the floor. Move it to the second floor. If that isn't possible, stack things on tables. Electronics, particularly, require a safe space.
3. Get a Professional Opinion
If you aren't sure about how your place may handle a torrential system, contact a storm and water restoration company. The specialists are certified. With their knowledge, they can point out vulnerabilities and recommend procedures that may safeguard those zones. They could install permanent flood barriers or moveable walls.
4. Move Electrical Equipment Up
Storm damage permits excessive water penetration that can reach the electrical wiring. Consider moving outlets, circuit breakers and switches to higher levels.
5. Use Waterproof Products
One of the major costs of floods is replacing harmed materials. Consider buying things that hold up well to moisture. Be sure to look for flood-resistant labels.
Flooding doesn't have to ruin your property and set you completely off schedule. Focus on how to hinder water penetration and minimize trouble.
Top 5 Mistakes When Using a Fire Extinguisher
Fire damage in Prescott, AZ.
Top 5 Mistakes When Using a Fire Extinguisher
Most homes have a fire extinguisher, but do you know how to use one properly? Do you know where it is located in your house or residential complex? The biggest mistake is to put off learning until it's too late.
1. Forgetting the Safety Pin
The pin prevents accidental use of the fire extinguisher. However, if you forget to disarm it, the tool will not be able to do its job. Locate it on the handle, and pull upward to remove.
2. Touching the Nozzle
A CO2 extinguisher causes the nozzle to be extremely cold to the touch. This can possibly harm the skin. To be safe, don't touch this part of the fire extinguisher. The CO2 kind can be identified its stiffer nozzle and absence of a pressure gauge. Regardless, it's best to keep humans away from the front end.
3. Aiming Too High
The natural instinct is to start at the top of the flames and work your way down. However, it's most effective to make a sweeping motion at the base of the fire. This way, whatever is igniting the flames will go out more quickly.
4. Getting Too Close
Furthermore, panic sets in during a fire emergency. Resist the urge to get as close to the fire as you can. This will only make you vulnerable to burns. In most small cases, like a kitchen fire, it can be put out farther away.
4. Being Overconfident
Firefighters are trained to put out fires for a reason. It's harder than it looks. Many individuals will think that they extinguished the flames, so they are done. That isn't the case. After doing the sweeping motions, wait to see if the fire reignites.
Large fires are often too difficult for an extinguisher to put out. If the flames get out of hand, evacuation is the best plan. If fire damage occurs, you will need to contact the local fire damage remediation experts in Prescott, AZ. Cleanup on your own is not safe due to possible structural damage.
How To Find Bathroom Leaks
A shower pan leak can cause severe water damage.
If you see water pooling in your bathroom in Prescott, AZ, it's important to find the water source right away. The longer the water sits, the more damage it can do. A bathtub leak is especially difficult to spot and often goes undetected until it becomes a huge problem. If you spot water damage, call a water restoration service as soon as possible. To catch the issue early, follow these tips.
How To Spot a Leaky Bathtub
Leaky bathtubs usually originate from one of two sources:
Faucet Leaks: A leaking faucet is fairly easy to fix. It's usually caused by worn rubber washers within the faucets assembly. Taking the faucet apart and replacing the washers may fix the problem. If you aren't sure what type of washers to buy, bring the old ones to your local hardware store. Sometimes replacing the washers won't fix the leak, though. In that case, you may need to replace the whole faucet assembly.
Drain Leaks: A bathtub leak can also originate in the drain. The easiest fix is when the seal around the drain becomes loose. In this situation, remove the drain and apply plumbers putty around the entire assembly. If that doesn't fix the leak, you may have an issue with the plumbing underneath the drain. A plumber can fix this problem.
How To Check the Shower Pan for Leaks
A shower pan leak can cause severe water damage. To identify such a leak, put enough duct tape over the drain to cover it completely. Make sure it is watertight. Pour enough water from a bucket into the shower pan to make at least an inch of standing water. Check for water at the base of the shower pan. Look for pooling that extends beyond the tile. If it occurs, contact a plumber to replace the pan so that it is installed properly.
A bathtub leak can become a serious problem. Make sure you address the issue right away.
How To Fix a Flooded Basement
The aftermath of a basement flood often involves specialized cleaning, repairs, and possibly rebuilding.
Steps On Fixing A Basement After A Flood
Whether your basement flood was caused by a storm outside or a faulty appliance inside, knowing where to start in cleaning up and dealing with the mess can be overwhelming. If your business in Prescott Valley, AZ suffers a flood, here are a few steps to fix the basement in the safest manner.
1. Remove the Water
Do not walk into a flooded basement before removing the water. While there may be debris and other things in the water you don't want to touch, the real danger is electrocution. If the water is only an inch or two deep and you are able to get to the service panel safely without touching the water, do so carefully and turn off the electricity. Then, use a shop vac plugged in upstairs to remove the water. If the water so deep that outlets and service panel are submerged, do not attempt to remove the water yourself. Call the fire department via a non-emergency line or call a water damage restoration specialist. That amount of water requires specialized equipment to be removed safely by trained professionals.
2. Decide What To Keep and What To Toss
Once the water has been removed from a basement flood, sort through everything that was submerged or damaged by the water. To avoid mold growth, try to quickly dry out and clean everything that can be salvaged. All items that are too damaged should be disposed of swiftly. Any gas or electrical appliances should be replaced. The drywall below the floodwater should be torn out and replaced.
3. Prevent Future Flooding
If you are able to determine the cause of the flooding, take steps to prevent it from happening again as you clean up and rebuild. Install a sump pump, fix the foundation, or reconsider your gutters to draw rainwater away from the structure properly.
The aftermath of a basement flood often involves specialized cleaning, repairs, and possibly rebuilding. Check with your insurance coverage to find out what might be covered. A water damage restoration specialist like SERVPRO may be able to help every step of the way.
4 Important Items To Include in Your Business Continuity Plan
Every enterprise needs a solid business continuity plan.
Here Are Four Matters That Are Imperative To Incorporate Within Yours
When flooding, fires and other natural disasters occur, companies become at risk for grinding to a halt. In addition to damage requiring the talents of a business renovation service, these extreme weather events trigger lost productivity and lower revenue. For this reason, every enterprise needs a solid business continuity plan. Having one in place will help assure that downtime is kept to a minimum.
1. Recovery Strategies
Plan out what you will do if operational necessities become unavailable. How will you continue if electricity is lost? What happens if critical employees are unable to come in? Know ahead of time what is to be done under every scenario.
2. Alternative Vendors
What should happen if other companies whose services you rely on suddenly cannot fulfill their duties? Identify providers outside of your usual channels and include them in your business continuity plan. Line up alternatives for essentials such as performing equipment fixes, delivering customer orders and providing office supplies.
3. Emergency Response Plan
In addition to keeping everyone safe, knowing what everyone is expected to do during a disaster helps smooth operations. The faster everyone gets to safety and is accounted for, the quicker you can get back up and running. Write out expected procedures and post them in your most highly-trafficked area.
4. Alternative Locations
Think about where your staff can go in the event your building in Prescott Valley, AZ needs to be evacuated. Find a nearby office with unused space or ask employees living in larger residences if they would be willing to host a temporary headquarters. Having staffers work from home is also often a viable alternative. Perform a test run of your plans for functioning remotely ahead of a fiasco.
A well-conceived business continuity plan can keep your venture humming even after calamity strikes. Avoid losing potential income by thinking ahead and planning for the worst.
How To Remove Mold From Your Company's Carpets
Water damage in Prescott Valley, AZ
When businesses suffer an infestation of mold, it often gets inside walls and ceilings. It may also appear within carpeted flooring, in which case a carpet cleaning specifically targeted at killing spores is required. What follows is the proper procedure for getting rid of foot-level fungi in Prescott Valley, AZ.
Carpet Mold Removal Safety
Any form of contact with mold contains risk. Protect yourself by using the following equipment:
- Rubber gloves
- Safety goggles
- Hazard suits
- Disposable foot and head covers
Besides the possible effects to one’s health, eliminating carpets of mold spores can be time-consuming and laborious. An alternative to handling the task on your own is hiring a team of mold remediation specialists to tackle the job for you.
Carpet Mold Removal Procedure
To execute a proper office carpet cleaning, start by increasing the room’s ventilation. Open windows and doors near the affected area. Additionally, you want to quarantine the contaminated zone, preventing others from accidentally exposing themselves to mold’s potential health effects. Use plastic sheeting and floor signs to signal that the space is temporarily off-limits.
Take a stiff brush and sweep away as much mold as you can into disposable bags. Vacuums outfitted with HEPA filters can be used for an even deeper clean. Follow this step by scrubbing the area with a non-bleach cleaner and then allowing the carpet to dry. Once your rug has been de-moisturized, run your vacuum over the carpet one more time to rid yourself of any remaining spores.
Anti-fungal coatings can be sprayed to aid in the prevention of mold problems from reappearing. These helpful deterrents can be found at hardware stores or purchased online.
Steam cleaners may likewise be employed to rid carpeting of mold, although the level of success this method achieves varies. If musty odors linger, applying a mixture of vinegar and baking soda is a good strategy for ridding your company of unpleasant smells.
A thorough carpet cleaning is required wherever mold appears. When embarking upon the task, follow these comprehensive steps to thoroughly defeat the problem.
4 Steps To Clean Up Broken Pipes
Water damage in a kitchen floor
4 Steps To Clean Up Broken Pipes
Dealing with bursting pipes is probably at the top of a homeowner’s worst to-do list. There is a lot of uncertainty that comes with water damage. That is why it is important to get the cleanup started and the help you need as soon as possible.
Shut Off the Water
Stop the water. Once you have found the pipe that is causing the issue, find the closest water valve and shut it off. Sometimes, that is easier said than done. If you cannot locate the exact source, shut off the main water valve to your home.
Call the Pros
To get your home back to normal, you will have to do more than fix a broken pipe. The sooner you get help, the better chances you have for minimizing water damage. Call the local water removal and restoration services experts in Prescott Valley, AZ. They have a tried-and-true process that includes:
- Preliminary inspection
- Water removal
- Drying and dehumidifying
- Cleaning and Sanitizing
Not only will the job get done quickly, but due to the company’s in-depth process, you will not have to worry about mold growth and other issues.
Call Your Insurance Agent
Sudden damages from bursting pipes are likely covered by your insurance, but you should still call to be sure. The agent can start to process your claim quickly. Keep photos, detailed notes and receipts from repairs to make claiming easier.
Take Preventative Measures
Ask the restoration company for advice on ways to prevent future issues. The actions you take will depend on why your pipes burst in the first place. If your pipes froze, you might be told to insulate any exposed piping. If they were weak at the burst-point, the expert might discourage you from using corrosive cleaners to get rid of clogs.
Bursting pipes can cause a lot of unforeseen issues that take a professional to resolve. After the water is shut off, make the call to get your home back to normal.
How to Prevent Business Fires
Fire damaged a restaurant in Prescott Valley, AZ
If you own a business in Prescott Valley, AZ, you probably want to do everything in your power to protect your investment. When it comes to potential safety concerns, fire prevention should be at the top of every business owner's priorities. Whether you run a clothing store or a fast-food joint, a fire could be a significant loss not only for you but also for your employees and customers. For this reason, it is critical to be proactive in reducing risks.
Types of Business Fires
According to the National Fire Protection Association, fire damage in commercial buildings usually begins with:
- Cooking equipment
- Electrical equipment
- Heating equipment
- Intentional acts
Of course, the type of fire your business experiences might depend on the kind of work you do. For example, you are more likely to face a cooking vat grease fire in a restaurant than an office environment.
Preventing Business Fires
If you want to avoid calling in a fire restoration professional to clean up your property after a business fire, it is wise to take fire prevention seriously. From the very beginning, one of the best things you can do is assess current fire risks. Look around your business and use a NFPA handbook to help you decide what changes you need to make. Look for smoke detectors, fire extinguishers and outdated equipment. Investing in a fire sprinkler system can also help prevent fires. While sprinklers can lead to water damage, they can prevent significantly more damage that may result from a fire.
For restaurant owners, it especially important to give attention to kitchen equipment. Make sure all exhaust properly ventilates to outside the building, and ensure you have noncombustible grease filters. On the other hand, it may be necessary for employees to wear special fireproof clothing for businesses running in warehouse settings.
Being a business owner is a big responsibility, and there are many risks you need to think about. The safety of your business should be a top priority. Fortunately, things like fire prevention do not need to be difficult. By following some simple steps, you can avoid many hazardous situations.
Important Information on FEMA Payments
Anything that is not covered by your insurance company could be paid for by FEMA disaster assistance programs
Important Information on FEMA Payments
If you have recently experienced a flood, you will have a lot of expenses, from finding a remediation company to renting a home. The good news is that anything that is not covered by your insurance company could be paid for by FEMA disaster assistance programs.
Making a Claim
After registering with FEMA, you need to start the claim process for your home in Prescott Valley, AZ. Here are the steps you must take:
- Contact your insurance company and file a claim
- Take photos of the damage to your property
- Meet with your insurance agent
- Collect documents related to your damaged property
- Get proof of loss
- Fill out your application for relief
Average Claim Payments
The amount of relief you receive is based on your individual loss. However, you can expect to receive several thousand dollars from FEMA if you do not have adequate insurance.
If you have the ability to acquire temporary housing on your own, you will not be able to receive a place through the program. However, if you cannot afford a hotel or rental property, the relief program can offer you temporary housing. Additionally, if you do not have enough insurance to replace all of your home and personal belongings damaged, you can receive funds through the program.
Before you can get paid, you will need to provide adequate documentation of your losses. Once you have turned in your proof of loss and finished your application, your information will be reviewed. This process can take a while and is known as the waiting period.
If you have recently experienced flooding or another natural disaster, you may want to know more about the disaster relief programs offered by the government. If you are eligible for relief and have made a claim, you will likely receive a chunk of money to pay for disaster-related expenses.
4 Steps of the Fire Damage Restoration Process
Fire damage in a Prescott Valley, AZ home
Fire Damage Restoration Process
If you have recently experienced a fire in your home in Prescott Valley, AZ, you might be at a loss about what to do now that the flames are out. Fire restoration is a serious undertaking. You can make sure the job is done right by hiring damage cleaning experts that follow a proven process.
The first step in restoration is understanding the task at hand. The restoration company will inspect your home for any issues that were caused by the fire. Professionals inspect not only the immediately affected area but any rooms that might have suffered smoke damage, too. They also look for signs of water damage that resulted from the fire. Afterward, these experts use their findings to create a plan, cost estimate, and timeline for your cleanup process.
2. Property Protection
Depending on the severity of the situation, your home may need further protection. Holes in the roof and walls leave your property open to more problems. If needed, the company will seal and tarp the house to prevent further damage.
Cleaning is the most time-consuming step in fire restoration. There are many steps in the cleanup process, including:
- Removing burned materials
- Drying and repairing any water damage issues
- Air filtration and odor removal
- Inspecting, cleaning and restoring belongings
- Moving out and storing your property in a safe location
The amount of cleaning needed depends on the situation, but even a small fire can create a lot of mess.
Repairing your home is the last part of the process. A fire damage restoration company can replace any building materials that your home lost so that it is structurally sound. Remediation professionals can also complete cosmetic restorations such as carpet installation and painting.
Fire restoration is a daunting process. Having a professional to keep you informed along the way can ease your mind while the work is done.
Is Mold Covered by Commercial Insurance?
Mold damage in Prescott Valley, AZ
What Is Covered In Your Commercial Insurance
Mold growth can cause major damage to your Prescott Valley, AZ, business. Understanding how commercial insurance addresses mold is key to protecting your property.
Mold Insurance Coverage
Most commercial policies do not cover mold damage in most circumstances. Many policies include a fungus exclusion, which specifically states that damage is not covered if it is caused by the following:
- Fungus (including mold and mildew)
- Wet rot
- Dry rot
Some policies do, however, state that mold damage is covered if it is caused by certain specified events, such as fire or lightning. Make sure that you read and fully understand your policy. Speak with your agent if you have any questions.
Because most commercial insurance policies do not cover mold, the best way to protect your business is to prevent the mold from growing in the first place. Mold needs three things to thrive: warmth, food and water. Most indoor locations are sufficiently warm and have multiple food sources available. The presence of moisture is the variable over which business owners have the most control. Keep indoor humidity below 50%. It may be necessary to run dehumidifiers in particularly humid areas of the building. Clean up spills and repair water damage as soon as possible. An experienced restoration service can help ensure the property is fully dry after flooding.
Another tactic for reducing the likelihood of mold growth is minimizing the number of spores present. Mold spores are invisible to the naked eye and present almost everywhere. Air purifiers with HEPA filters can trap a significant number of these spores before they have a chance to colonize. HEPA filters can also be installed in the HVAC unit. If your building has carpet, routine deep cleaning kills the spores that get trapped in the carpet fibers.
Commercial insurance generally does not cover mold damage in commercial buildings. However, understanding your policy and taking steps to prevent fungal growth in the first place are important steps you can take to protect your business.
How To Prevent Plumbing Problems in the Office
Leaking faucets can cause damage in your property
Your office uses an incredible amount of water. With so much usage, it is only a matter of time before plumbing problems spew forth. Thankfully, you can reduce the odds of minor issues mushrooming into unmanageable disasters in Prescott Valley, AZ by taking a few simple proactive measures.
Common Leak Problems
Faucets begin to seep when they have:
- Worn O-rings
- Old flow restrictors
- Bad valve seats
- Defective washers
When leaks from faucets persist, water sometimes soaks into walls and creates extensive damage. A broken pipe from above has even greater destructive potential. A water main break, however, makes structural deterioration extremely likely. Any of these scenarios could trigger significant losses that require the services of a water damage restoration professional to completely fix.
Leak Problem Prevention
Dripping faucets add an estimated $100 per year to water bills, making them one of the most insidious plumbing problems imaginable. Try turning your knobs all the way off. If water continues dribbling out after no more tightening is possible, your faucets might need to be replaced.
Switching to low-flow plumbing fixtures helps in the prevention of leaks. Older toilets use up to seven gallons per flush, whereas newer ones utilize under two. The lowered stress on your pipes will help reduce the chances of cracks from developing.
Given the amount of strain we place on our sinks, it is common for them to become clogged. Run your faucets with the drains open. If water begins pooling, there may be an obstruction. Off-the-shelf liquid solutions are able to clear these stoppages, but why wait for one to develop? Once a month, pour baking soda followed by a cup of vinegar down your drains and flush out any potential buildups.
Offices that never receive preventive care more commonly develop plumbing problems than those that do. Instead of allowing complications to fester and worsen, perform defensive actions that will keep your building’s pipes flowing smoothly.
Hiring a Mold Cleanup Company
Mold remediation in Prescott Valley, AZ
Mold can grow anytime there is excessive moisture in an area. If you have found mold contamination in your home, you will need to have it removed immediately. The remediation process is something you should hire a reputable company for, so they can do the cleanup for you.
Hiring a Professional
Each mold cleanup process is unique. Obviously, a small patch of mold on your kitchen counter is going to be handled differently than an outbreak that takes over your attic. While you may be able to scrub the counter yourself, you will need to hire a professional for the remediation in your attic. Here are the most common times you will want to hire a professional remediation company to take care of the mold in your home in Prescott Valley, AZ:
- When mold contamination is present in your HVAC system.
- When mold damage was caused by sewage.
- When a complete mold remediation is necessary.
- When you are unsure of the current EPA recommendations for cleanups.
- If you have health effects.
Techniques They Will Use
While you may wield a scrub brush for small jobs, the professionals won't do this. They will likely use a much more complicated process to ensure that your mold levels are returned to normal. Just keep in mind some of your belongings may have permanent stains. These items will likely not be returned to their original appearance, even by professionals.
The first thing the company you hire will do is dry all of your items. They will likely be forced to throw any porous materials away. Then, they will begin the remediation process for any hard surfaces. During this process, they will contain the mold so that the spores do not spread. After they have killed the excess mold spores, they will seal in any that remain with a special type of paint.
If there is excessive moisture in your home, you may experience mold contamination. When this occurs, the best course of action is to hire a cleanup company.
Primary Versus Secondary Damage
Cleaning up kitchen water damage
Primary Versus Secondary Damage
If your home in Prescott Valley, AZ, has experienced any type of primary water damage, then you know how expensive and time consuming the remediation process can be. However, you might not be aware of the dangers that secondary damage can present, such as black mold, warped flooring and other forms of structural damage.
Primary damage is easy to identify and define. It's defined as the initial cause of the water damage, as well as any damage that was inflicted as a direct result of the incident itself. Some common examples of primary damage include:
- Broken or burst pipes
- Waterlogged possessions
- Soaked carpeting, floor boards, ceiling tiles or other building materials
- Leaking or overflowing household appliances, such as washing machines, toilets and sinks
Primary water damage can wreck enough havoc on its own. If these water damages are not remediated quickly and properly, they can lead to much more problematic, subsequent issues.
If you don't take the proper measures to remediate and completely clean primary water damage, then you might be stuck having to clean up subsequent damage as well. This is defined as any type of damage that was sustained after the initial accident was resolved, but still occurred as a result of the primary water damage. Some examples include:
There's no way of knowing whether your home is about to suffer from additional issues until the signs start to appear. These indicators could take hours, days or even months to reveal themselves, so it's important to always stay vigilant.
Addressing and remediating primary water damage as quickly as possible is the best way to prevent secondary damages, such as black mold and warped structures. Contact water remediation experts immediately if you suspect that your home might suffer from unwanted subsequent damages.
How to Get Rid of Post-Flooding Odors
Flooding causes problems such as damaged materials and mold growth
Using These Methods Can Relieve These Odors Once And For All
Water damage can cause all sorts of problems. Even minor flooding can ruin building materials, supplies and equipment. It can also lead to mold growth. As if these issues aren't bad enough, floods can leave behind unbearable smells. Without the right treatment, these odors can remain indefinitely, making it difficult to work in your Prescott, AZ building. The odors could even compromise people's health. You should know some effective ways to help your building to smell good once more.
Remove the Mold
Mold growth often follows flooding, especially if you don't remove the water and dry the affected areas promptly. Here are some ways in which you can get rid of mold when you spot it after a flood:
- For small areas, scrub the surfaces with a mixture of water and bleach.
- To remove mold from furniture, use a mixture of laundry detergent and water; then, use a vacuum remove additional residue.
- For large areas, contact a professional mold remediation company.
Clean the Carpets
Flood water can wreak havoc on carpet. Even if you extract all the water and thoroughly dry it, a musty, mildew-like stench will likely remain. You should start by placing baking soda on the ground and leaving it there overnight. The baking soda should absorb the odor. Vacuum the area to remove the powder. For more extensive damage and severe odors, you'll need to call a professional crew, which will have more powerful, effective chemicals and equipment.
Hit the Upholstery
Don't neglect any upholstery in the building, specifically on chairs or couches. Using vinegar can be a good way to remove unwanted odors. Some carpet-cleaning machines can also be effective, even against flooding that came from a sewage loss.
Flooding causes problems such as damaged materials and mold growth. It will also cause terrible stenches to permeate the building. Using these methods can relieve these odors once and for all.
How To Estimate Commercial Fire Damage
Commercial fire in Prescott, AZ
How To Estimate Commercial Fire Damage
A commercial fire is devastating, and after a fire, you may feel confused, frustrated and scared. In many cases, the insurance companies have adjusters that will do the actual calculations, but you still need to tell them exactly what was lost in the fire. After contacting your insurance agent, you will need to estimate what was lost. This may seem like a difficult task, but there are very basic things that you can do to make it easier.
Take an Inventory
The first thing you want to do is take an inventory of everything that is damaged. Write it all down, even if it seems inconsequential. You should write down:
- Damage to the exterior and interior of the structure
- Inventory loss
- Equipment loss, particularly electronics
- Supply loss
Knowing what you lost is the first step in getting an accurate estimate of the damage caused by the fire and firefighters. Fighting the fire sometimes causes more damage than the fire itself.
Evaluate Structural Damage
You should only enter the structure when it is safe to do so. If the structure is damaged beyond repair or the damage is extensive, you can use the formula, square foot cost to rebuild or repair multiplied by the total square footage of room or structure to approximate the cost of rebuilding or repairing the damage. You will also need to add in the cost of water damage and fire damage restoration in Prescott, AZ for your calculations to be accurate.
Approximate Equipment Loss
Approximating damages in a commercial fire also includes damage to equipment, inventory and supplies. You can do this by performing a reverse inventory. Take an estimate of what you had before the fire and subtract what you have now. This is what you lost. It is particularly important in a commercial fire where inventory and supplies are damaged.
Remember, insurance companies have adjusters that use formulas to estimate the value of what was lost. You should only need to give them an accurate picture of what was lost.
4 Steps To Recovering After Fire Sprinkler Activation
Commercial fire sprinkler heads can go off accidentally and lead to flooding
Here Are Four Steps You Can Take To Recover After An Incident With Fire Sprinklers
Commercial fire sprinkler heads can go off accidentally and lead to flooding. Although accidental discharge from sprinklers is uncommon, it does occur and can cause unexpected damage to businesses. Sprinkler malfunctions usually occur because of overheating, frozen pipes, mechanical damage, corrosion, or sabotage. Regardless of the cause, you need to take action to return your business in Prescott, AZ, to normal as quickly as possible. Here are four steps you can take to recover after an incident with fire sprinklers.
1. Turn off the Water
The most urgent need is to stop the flow of water. The more water that accumulates, the worse the damage may become. Find the valve that controls the fire sprinkler system and turn the valve to the off position.
2. Call a Restoration Company
When flooding occurs from a faulty fire sprinkler system, it can damage paperwork, furniture, carpeting, and other items. Luckily, a restoration company can restore or replace damaged items. The faster you can get the area dried, the less damage you are likely to experience. Water mitigation techniques include water extraction and drying. Professionals use industrialized blowers that get rid of moisture much faster than other methods.
3. Contact an Insurance Agent
Many business owners have insurance policies that protect against water damage caused by fire suppression systems. Talking with your agent will help you know exactly what you can expect and how much of the damage is covered under your policy.
4. Save Broken Pieces
You may find yourself needing to provide information to your insurance company about the cause of the incident. Be sure to save any pieces of the sprinkler system that you find. Investigators may need to use the components as evidence in determining what happened.
Regardless of the cause of the flooding, water can impact your business operations. By enlisting the help of a professional water remediation service, you can get back to normal as quickly as possible.
5 Tips for Proper Sump Pump Maintenance
Contact flood remediation experts for professional assistance if your sump pump isn't running properly
Tips To Keep Your Device Working At Peak Efficiency
A sump pump is extremely helpful when it comes to removing excess water and protecting your property in Prescott Valley, AZ from flood damage. Much like any other household device, you need to make sure you're taking the proper steps to maintain your pump and keep it working properly for years to come. Check out the following tips to keep your device working at peak efficiency.
1. Remove Debris from the Discharge Pipe.
The discharge pipe works exactly the same as any other pipe in your home; it won't be able to properly pump water if there's debris inside. Regularly check the discharge pipe for obstructions and remove any that you find.
2. Remove Clogs from the Intake Screen.
Your sump pump tends to collect a lot of dirt, gravel and other obstructions as it works. Regularly inspecting the intake screen and removing debris can help keep it running at peak efficiency.
3. Check the Outlet and Cord.
The unit should be plugged into a working ground fault circuit interruptor (GFCI). It's also important to regularly check to make sure that the cord the pump is plugged into is still in good shape.
4. Test the Pump Regularly.
Testing the pump is an important part of proper sump pump maintenance. You can easily do this by pouring a bucket of water in the basin of the device. Watch as the water level rises. The device's float should trigger the machine to activate and drain the excess water.
5. Replace the Pump's Battery.
Some pumps do operate on a backup battery, just in case the electricity shuts off. Check with the pump's manufacturer to see how often the backup battery needs to be replaced. Most devices require battery changes every two to three years.
Sump Pump maintenance is extremely easy and can help keep your device running properly for years to come. Contact flood remediation experts for professional assistance if your sump pump isn't running properly.
4 Signs You Might Have a Leaky Shower
A water leak is not a matter that should be taken lightly to avoid mold growth
Signs You Might Have A Leaky Shower
A shower or bathtub leak might seem like a relatively insignificant issue, but it can actually cause catastrophic amounts of water damage if left untreated. Unchecked water damage can only result in subsequent issues, such as flooding and unwanted mold growth. Check your home in Prescott Valley, AZ for the following signs if you suspect that you might have a leaky shower.
1. Mold or Mildew Growth
Mold and mildew both love moisture, so it's quite common to find them growing in your bathroom from time to time. Occasional mold growth isn't necessarily anything to be overly concerned about, but you might want to consider investigating the issue further if you notice that it reappears quite regularly.
2. Stained or Warped Ceilings
Check the ceilings on the floor directly below the shower or bathtub in question for signs of water damage. Any ugly, brown water stains are indicative of a shower or bathtub leak. In extreme cases, you might notice that the ceiling is warped or bulging. This is a sign that water is accumulating in the ceiling itself, and you need to contact professional help.
3. Damaged Bathroom Walls
Look for the same signs of damage in your bathroom's walls. Any peeling or chipped paint or wallpaper is usually indicative of water damage caused by a shower pan leak. If your walls are bulging or warped, you need to contact professional help.
4. Cracked or Broken Bathroom Floor Tiles
Your bathroom comes into frequent contact with water, so your floor tiles are naturally able to withstand moderate amounts of moisture. If you notice that your floor tiles are cracked or broken in any way, you likely have a leaky shower.
A shower or bathtub leak is not a matter that should be taken lightly. If you notice one or more of the above indicators, then you need to contact water remediation experts to help solve the problem and prevent further water damage.
Top 5 Residential Mold Causes
Mold damage after a leaky pipe
Why Is Black Mold Growing In My Home?
There are several reasons why you might find black mold growing in your home. At the end of the day, the key factor contributing to this mold growth is excessive moisture. Taking care of a moisture problem is essential when it comes to protecting your home in Black Canyon City, AZ, from unwanted mold growth. Read on to see whether any of the following causes are the source of your issue.
1. Wet Clothes
Leaving wet clothes alone for long periods of time can result in mold growth. The moisture they release while air drying can cause mold to take root on other nearby surfaces in your home as well. Lastly, leaving wet clothes in the washing machine for extended periods of time can cause black mold to form in the machine itself.
2. Poor Ventilation
Improper ventilation is the most problematic in residential bathrooms. The steam and condensation that forms during long hot showers has nowhere to go and is forced to build up on mirrors and other bathroom surfaces, causing mold growth. Crack a window or activate your bathroom's ventilation fan while you shower to prevent this from happening.
3. Leaky Pipes
Leaky pipes can be dangerous since it might take a while for you to notice that anything is wrong. During this time, moisture and standing water continue to build up, inviting mold into your home. Make time to routinely check exposed water pipes in your basement and underneath your sinks for leaks.
The water damage caused by flooding is often followed by secondary damage. It only takes 24 hours of continuous moisture for mold to form. Residential floods can dampen your property for days, or even weeks after the initial incident.
Monitoring and maintaining indoor humidity levels are essential when it comes to preventing mold from forming. If you see condensation forming on your window panes, then chances are your indoor humidity levels are too high.
If you do discover black mold growing in your home, it's vital that you contact remediation experts immediately to assist in your mold cleanup efforts.
3 Ways to Choose the Best Fire Extinguisher
Using a fire extinguisher is your best protection against a fire
3 Ways to Choose the Best Fire Extinguisher
You have several options when choosing a fire extinguisher to protect your home. Not only do you have several sizes to choose from, but different classes work on different types of fires. Class A is for ordinary combustibles, B is used for flammable liquids, and C is used for live electricity. Type A:B:C is effective on all three types and is best when a variety of materials are contained in a confined area. Here are suitable extinguishers for different areas of your home in Dewey- Humboldt, AZ.
1. Larger Areas
Garages and home workshops tend to be filled with many different types of items including flammable gas, paper or cardboard, and live electricity. These areas are generally on the larger side. To account for the different types of materials and the larger area, you may want to opt for a 10-pound A:B:C type fire extinguisher.
2. Confined Spaces
Kitchens and laundry rooms are generally more confined. Accessibility is extremely important in these areas. The faster you can access your fire suppression unit, the less time the fire has to spread. Some models can be mounted directly on the wall or inside a cabinet door. A 5-pound canister is easy to maneuver and contains enough flame retardant for a small home fire.
3. Over the Stove
Since stoves and ovens are the main areas fires break out in the kitchen, good fire preparedness includes mounting an extinguisher over this area. 2-pound disposal models are designed to burst open when exposed to the heat of an open flame. These units provide a safe and effective way to eliminate cooking flames in your kitchen.
Using a fire extinguisher is your best protection against a fire. However, if the fire begins to get dangerous or out of control, leave the home immediately and call the fire department. If you have experienced damage from a fire, hire a professional fire remediation company to restore your home to sites pre-fire condition.
How Long Does the Mold Removal Process Last?
Mold removal is a process and one which cannot be rushed
How Long Does The Mold Removal Process Last?
Most commercial property owners are likely concerned with the business interruption related to the mold removal process. While the process generally takes 3-7 days, depending on the severity of the infestation, many owners wonder if there is a way to speed it up. However, this desire comes from both a want to return to business as usual and a lack of understanding for the removal and remediation process. There are at least four steps to remediation, and each one is as important as the last, meaning that there are no shortcuts and no way to rush.
Containment is vital to remediation and getting your business back on track because it reduces the risk of spread. If this step is tossed aside or rushed through, then you run the risk of further mold growth in other areas of your property, consequently increasing the length of time needed to mitigate and restore the area.
2. Controlled Removal
Similar to containment, controlled mold removal focuses on collecting all contaminated materials and sealing them in trash bags to prevent the spread of mold spores throughout your facility. Again, if this step is ignored and people just rip up carpets and drag them through the hallways, you run the risk of mold developing in other areas.
3. Cleaning and Disinfecting
The cleaning and disinfecting phase of the process is vital to eliminate the risk of re-infestation. If appropriate procedures aren’t followed, then you may see a resurgence in mold growth. Also, if black mold affected areas are not adequately cleaned, then health and safety concerns may remain. A mold remediation specialist in the Yava, AZ area takes only the time necessary to mitigate and restore your facility, thereby protecting you and your patrons.
The last stage of the process, salvaging, is possibly the only phase where you can save time. However, keeping and cleaning items may save you money in the long run, but if you wish to discard everything, you may.
Mold removal is a process and one which cannot be rushed. While you can attempt to rush through some things, you are only risking your business further damage.
How To Address a Flooded Furnace
Clean your air ducts
How To Address a Flooded Furnace
A burst pipe or significant water seepage can cause extensive destruction inside any business in Chino Valley, AZ. Like office furniture and building materials, critical HVAC equipment may be vulnerable to flood damage. A water-damaged furnace can malfunction and present a serious safety hazard. Because of this, it’s important for every property owner to properly evaluate their system following a furnace flood.
1. Disconnect Power
Water and electricity can be a deadly combination. To minimize the risk of injury, shut off power to a flooded furnace as quickly as possible. As a precaution, you should also disconnect the gas lines on a gas-powered unit. For safety reasons, refrain from engaging the furnace until it’s inspected by a licensed technician.
2. Inspect Unit
Depending on the extent of flooding, your unit may be caked in debris and mud. A HVAC specialist can clean the furnace and evaluate the extent of damage.
Water infiltration may cause both the internal structure and key components to rust and corrode, resulting in reliability issues and potential fire hazards. As a result, your technician may recommend replacing the device.
3. Replace Vital Components
Some business owners may choose not to replace their units after a furnace flood. To help your system run as efficiently as possible, you may need to replace critical components, such as valves, controls and gas regulators. You should also replace wet filters.
4. Clean Air Ducts
Mold thrives in moist environments. A flooded furnace can enable the fungus to thrive and infiltrate centralized heating ducts. To minimize this risk, complete a thorough air duct cleaning. Because it can harbor spores, you should also discard and replace wet duct insulation.
Water damage cleanup and restoration can be a costly expense for any business. Enduring a furnace flood can compromise the integrity of the building’s heating unit, complicating matters. Initiating an efficient response can ensure safe system operation, protecting your investment from additional destruction.
Common Questions About Commercial Building Envelopes
Commercial building envelope in Lake Montezuma, AZ
The potential rain damage that a storm could bring to your Lake Montezuma, AZ, commercial building is not limited to leaks. The increased humidity during such an event should also be a concern, as it can damage the building and any business property. The best way to reduce indoor moisture and prevent water damage is by enacting a tight building envelope.
What Is an Envelope?
An envelope, sometimes known as building enclosure, is essentially the location's outer shell that keeps the temperature stable and isolated from outdoor conditions. The system accomplishes this goal with air, vapor, and thermal barriers. It is composed of a roof, above-grade walls, and below-grade walls. The main objectives of an envelope system are to support the building's structure, control the internal conditions, and provide a desired aesthetic finish.
What Are Its Benefits?
The building enclosure brings multiple benefits to your commercial building. A strong envelope allows for the following features:
- Defense against rain damage catalysts (water, vapor, air, etc.)
- Stable interior temperature
- Insulation from outdoor hot and cold flows
- Stormwater redirection and drainage
- Additional structural support
Unlike other building components, an envelope serves multiple functions and creates different benefits. Consider integrating it during the construction or remodel of your establishment.
What Are the Dangers of Moisture?
Without a properly built envelope in place, moisture penetrates the structure and creates problems for your business. The excess water can weaken the building and damage the documents and equipment you keep inside. Additionally, the humidity and the presence of organic matter create the perfect environment for black mold to thrive. You will need to call commercial building remediation specialists to repair the damage and remove the mold from the area. Avoid these issues with a strong building envelope.
While an envelope may consist of simple parts like roofing and walls, their proper execution leads to a strong defense of hazards like rain damage. Ensure high-quality materials and construction standards are used for your commercial building.
Commercial Considerations and Insurance
What Does Storm Insurance And Coverage Actually Cover?
While the winter provides its fair share of concern, from burst pipes to ice coverage, the spring, with its severe weather conditions, provides a heightened sense of anxiety, especially among commercial property owners. Granted, most commercial policies include storm insurance and coverage, but what does that actually cover? What are the likely losses covered in storm policies and what aren't?
1. Falling Trees and Storm Debris
Commercial insurance coverage will cover damages from falling trees and other debris as long as the cause was the storm. Therefore, if the high winds of a storm uproot landscaping and hurtle it toward the building, then the insurance plan will probably cover the damage. However, if there was an existing issue with the tree, like root rot, then your claim might be denied.
2. Wear and Tear
With storm insurance, as with any commercial policy, a loss is only covered when it is unexpected, not when it is a result of negligence. Therefore, if you have a leaking roof that you have ignored, and then a storm comes through making the leak worse, then your insurer will likely reject the claim for roof damage. Insurers protect against the unexpected, not the known.
While most policies will cover damages to contents within the building, a set dollar allotment for coverage is based on specific values. You will want to make sure that your coverage is enough to cover the cost of replacements for furniture and equipment.
After a storm rips through your area, you might need a storm remediation specialist in the Yava, AZ, area. Thankfully, your commercial policy will probably help to cover any restoration or mitigation costs. However, the values are often based on the costs of a rebuild and not market value.
Storm insurance is tied into your commercial policy. While it may not cover everything, storm coverage does help to mitigate some of the potential expenses. Therefore, review your policy and know what to expect the next time a storm comes around.
4 Ways To Prevent Mold in Your Commercial Building
Clean the vents
Tips To Prevent Mold Buildup
There are many reasons to prevent mold damage within your property. For starters, mold removal can be a costly and lengthy process. You may also have to temporarily leave your building during the commercial mold cleanup. This could affect your Chino Valley, AZ, company's profits.
You should thus be proactive and try to limit mold growth within your property. Here are some tips for preventing mold buildup.
1. Reduce Moisture
Mold thrives in wet areas. If your property is dry, the mold will not be able to grow. You should thus use fans and dehumidifiers to limit the moisture in the air.
2. Fix Plumbing Problems
Unsealed windows or leaky pipes do not just bring water into your property. They could also encourage the growth of mold. If you notice any plumbing issues in your building, repair the problem immediately. Then call in mold removal experts to check for spores.
3. Clean the Vents
When mold grows in the vents, it can quickly spread through the building via the HVAC system. Yet because the insides of the vents are dark, you may not easily see the mold growing inside them. You should thus clean the ducts and vents regularly to eliminate any hidden mold spores.
4. When in Doubt, Call the Pros
If you do find spores during your inspection, you may be tempted to do mold cleanup yourself. However, this may just make the problem worse. The mold could return or spread even more. You should instead contact mold remediation professionals. They will know how to remove the mold properly so it does not come back.
Mold growth is common in wet, dark areas of commercial buildings. You should thus lower the moisture level and clean damp areas such as the vents. Be sure to address any water leaks right away. If you do find the spores in your building, call mold removal specialists right away.
Flooding at Your Business: 3 Tips for Preventing Secondary Damage
Flood damage in Campo Verde, AZ
Actions To Take To Prevent Future Damage To Your Property
When an unexpected flood impacts your Campo Verde, AZ, business, the water damage may seem overwhelming. Soaked inventory, office furniture and building materials could all be affected, and you may not know where to begin when it comes to cleanup efforts. While calling in a flood mitigation service can provide you with the support you need, there are still a few actions you can take in the meantime to prevent future damage to your property.
1. Shut Off the Main Water Valve
If the flood occurred as the result of a broken or burst water pipe, you can reduce the amount of standing water by shutting off your building’s water supply. Broken pipes will likely continue to gush water until you take this step. Remember to approach the shutoff valve carefully and if you cannot access it safely, you may want to call your local water company for assistance.
2. Reduce Humidity Levels
One of the most common types of secondary water damage is the development of mold on walls and ceilings, as standing water can increase humidity levels and create ideal conditions for fungi to multiply rapidly. You can reduce humidity in your building by opening windows and using fans to lower moisture levels.
3. Prevent Odors
One difficult aspect of water cleanup is how to prevent odor from lingering once your flood damage and restoration company has cleared away standing water. This can be especially difficult if the flood’s source was a sewer or overflowing toilet. Your flood technicians can offer you different options for odor control, such as the use of ozone machines that remove the smell instead of simply trying to mask it.
Because water damage could be widespread when it hits your Campo Verde, AZ, business, you may not know where to begin when it comes to cleaning up. Keeping a few tips in mind about preventing secondary damage may protect the future of your commercial property and the prosperity of your business.
How To Clean a Flooded Crawl Space
Crawlspace clean up in Cottonwood, AZ
Steps To Dry Out Your Crawl Space And Prevent Further Damages
When a storm floods your home in Cottonwood, AZ, you probably check all the usual places for damage, including in the attic and under windows. The crawl space under your house is also a common place to find a home flood. There are several steps you need to take to dry out your crawl space and prevent further problems.
1. Call Flood Specialists
A flood restoration company should be the first number you call after a storm if you suspect you have flooding. When technicians arrive, they will inspect your whole house from top to bottom, looking for signs of water damage and the vulnerable spots where the water got into your home. Using this information, they can provide you a suggested list of repairs and an estimate for the work they need to do.
2. Extract Water
Before any cleaning can be done, the experts must remove all the standing water out of your crawl space and air it out. This process helps thwart mold growth. Mold can start to form patches in an area with excess moisture as early as one day after the home flood occurs. Drying the area prevents secondary damage from happening.
3. Tear Out Damage
After a flood, the drywall and other porous materials in your crawl space are likely saturated. Technicians must tear out any materials that cannot be salvaged due to significant storm damage.
4. Clean the Space
Flood water is contaminated with bacteria. Therefore, it's not enough just to dry the crawl space. It must be thoroughly disinfected before the restoration company rebuilds the area.
5. Restore the Space
The last step of the process is replacing the materials that had to be thrown out. The goal of restoration is to make the crawl space look "Like it never even happened."
A home flood is a common occurrence after a heavy storm. When you call restoration experts in a timely manner, though, they can have your crawl space clean and dry in no time.
Cleaning and Preventing Mold in Your Swamp Cooler
A leaking swamp cooler can cause major problems
An evaporative cooler is an amazing invention. It keeps your Prescott, AZ, house cool during the summer while using much less energy than a traditional air conditioner does. However, a leaking swamp cooler can cause major problems. Specifically, it can lead to mold damage in your home.
Understanding Swamp Cooler Mold
A typical swamp cooler is made up of several parts. They include:
- Water pump
- Cellulose pad
The cellulose pad remains damp thanks to the presence of the water pump. The fan blows dry air over the pad, cooling the air before it spreads throughout the home. Over time, however, the presence of moisture can lead to the development of mold within the cooler.
Preventing Swamp Cooler Mold
The best way to prevent mold in your swamp cooler is to regularly maintain the device. A leaking swamp cooler can result in standing water that encourages the buildup of mold.
Properly functioning swamp coolers can also lead to mold damage because they add extra moisture into the air. You should thus avoid purchasing a swamp cooler if you live in a humid environment. You should also reduce the amount of moisture in your home by keeping your windows slightly open when possible.
Cleaning Swamp Cooler Mold
Even if you do follow the above suggestions, mold growth can still occur in or near your swamp cooler. Cellulose pads that become infested with mold should be replaced.
Mold in the ducts of the swamp cooler is an even bigger problem. Removing this mold will release the spores into the air. This process could be dangerous, especially for those who have limited experience with black mold cleanup. Therefore, you should contact your local mold remediation specialists to do the job.
While evaporative swamp coolers are essential in many households, they also add moisture to the air. These coolers can thus promote the growth of mold in your home. To avoid the need for mold cleanup, repair a broken or leaking swamp cooler as soon as possible.
Learn the Basics of a Commercial Partial Loss
Commercial fire loss in Bagdad, AZ
Not every fire loss means the complete destruction of your Bagdad, AZ, commercial location. Sometimes, only part of your property is affected by a fire or the damage is not complete. This type of fire incident requires a different process than a total loss, from claims filing to restoration. Learn the basics of a partial loss to handle this specific situation effectively.
Definition of a Partial Loss
A partial loss occurs when a fire partially destroys a building. The fire may affect only a part of the building or destroy only some of the property. Additionally, it can also include damage that does not permanently impair use, like smoke damage. Sometimes, it may not even occur directly on your location. For example, if a nearby building catches on fire, your building or equipment may be altered by that incident's smoke, ash or increased heat.
Examples of Partial Loss
A partial fire loss manifests in various shapes and forms. You will need to identify them to correctly assess the damage.
Partially damaged property
Hidden damage (smoke, water, mold, air quality, etc.)
Unsatisfactory and disputed repairs
Improper cleaning and repair
As you see, not every partial loss is blatant or occurs only during the time of the incident. Hidden damage and improper procedures can affect your building just as much. This is why it is important to have trusted professionals inspect the location, even if it initially seems like everything is intact.
What To Do After a Partial Loss
After the incident, it is important to contact your insurance adjuster and an approved fire restoration company to handle your case. These professionals will ensure every detail of the partial loss is accounted for, even the hidden damage. Make sure to keep detailed documentation of the damage, as this information is useful. The restoration specialists should inspect every area, including the roof, windows, and plumbing.
You should take a fire loss seriously even if it barely noticeable. Record every bit of information and contact professionals, no matter the scope of the damage.
3 Ways SERVPRO Can Help Your Insurance Agent With Your Claim
Storm damage in a commercial building
Three Ways A Storm Restoration Team Can Help
During a storm restoration your local Prescott, AZ, SERVPRO restoration team may have several ways they can help your insurance agent with your claim. These tools and procedures are designed to help ensure that your agent gets everything they need to efficiently process the claim without jumping through multiple hoops chasing information. Here are three ways the restoration team can help.
1. Damage Assessment
The first step in many restorations is a damage assessment of the affected area. A quick storm response may help prevent additional flood damage which is why you may see the team also take mitigation steps such as covering over at risk areas with protecting tarping as they go. Everything in the record can then go in an assessment document which can be sent to your insurance agent so they can begin working on your claim.
2. Electronic Inventory System
Another tool your SERVPRO crew can provide during the storm restoration is the electronic inventory system. This is a database that can be accessed remotely by anyone with permission to do so. It commonly stores documentation important for the restoration as well as the insurance claim. These may include photographs of the damage, itemized lists, cost assessments, repair schedules, and progress reports.
3. Progress Reports
One of the things your restoration crew can include in the database’s inventory is regular progress reports. This will allow anyone with access to the inventory system to check in on what repairs have been made and what still needs to be done, without running the risk of interrupting the team’s work. This can be especially useful for your agent who may need to keep tabs on progress.
During storm restoration, your SERVPRO crew can document the damage assessment process so that your agent knows exactly what’s going on with your business property. This assessment can be stored electronically along with many other important documentation which your agent can access remotely from their own office. Among the information may also be regular progress reports so that when working on your claim your agent knows exactly where everything stands.
Is Drain Cleaner Damaging Your Pipes?
Is it safe to use drain cleaners in our pipes?
If you have a clogged drain in your home in Prescott Valley, AZ, you may be wondering how to tackle the problem. Perhaps you've seen an advertisement for a drain cleaner that will miraculously flush the clog away, but is it safe to use? While many products work to a certain extent, you should be aware of the negative consequences of using chemicals in your pipes.
Disadvantages of Using Chemicals in Your Drains
Chemical cleaners produce heat to remove the clog, so if your pipes are old, weak or made of plastic, they can be easily damaged.
The toxic chemicals in the cleaners are harmful to the environment.
A completely clogged drain can't be cleared using cleaners. The chemicals will just sit there in the pipes and eat away at the metal, eventually causing the pipe to leak.
Safer Ways to Remove a Clog
There are several non-toxic cleaners on the market that use enzymes to dissolve the clog. These enzymatic cleaners take a little longer to unclog the drain, but they are safe on the environment, and they won't damage your pipes. They work best on organic materials, such as soap and hair.
A plunger will loosen many clogs, but if that doesn't work, try using an auger. You can rent one cheaply at your local hardware store. The auger, or snake, is fed into the drain to pull out the clog.
If the clog gets backed up far enough into your sewer pipeline, a sewage cleaning may be necessary. The sewer pipes carry wastewater from your home, and if they get backed up, they can cause flooding. You will need to contact a professional to clean out your sewage pipes right away to avoid extensive water damage repairs.
It's important to work on that clogged drain as soon as you discover it. Waiting can cost you a lot of money down the road.
What Can You Keep After a Home Fire?
Residential fire loss in Bagdad, AZ
A home fire can cause a lot of significant damage. In addition to the harm done to your home, many of your furnishings and belongings will also be damaged by flames, the heat and smoke of the fire, and the water from fire fighting efforts. You may find some items that don't look damaged but may still be ruined.
How Can You Tell What You Need To Throw Away and What Can be Salvaged?
Permeable items may have absorbed contaminants from soot and water.
Discuss the potential dangers with experts such as firefighters or your insurance agent.
Compare the cost of cleaning and repair versus the cost of replacement.
Keep your family's safety and health as your primary focus.
Remember that fire damage isn't limited to those areas affected by the flames. High heat, water, and soot can all cause potentially harmful situations.
First Things First
During the first few days after the fire, you should talk with your insurance agent about how to assess the value of your home, furnishings, and property. It's important to immediately begin replacing documents such as your driver's license, birth, and social security records, deeds to your home, and auto registration, for example.
Throw These Things Out
When it's safe to return to your Bagdad, AZ, home, you can begin the task of deciding what to throw away and what to keep. There are some items that should be thrown out immediately:
- Any open containers of food
- Food stored in permeable containers
- Charred, rusted, or bulging cans of food, medicine, and cosmetics
- Containers with evidence of fire extinguisher residue
- Food in a fridge that smells like smoke or has soot inside
- Food that smells bad or doesn't feel cold anymore
- Clothing that has been damaged
The high heat of a fire can affect foods, medications, and cosmetics even when the products are in airtight containers. Don't put your health at risk; just replace these items.
Focus on Safety
It can be difficult to throw away food and medication that looks fine, but it's more important to be sure that you and your family members are safe and in good health as you recover from the experience. While home restoration experts work to return your home to its pre-fire condition, you can focus on cleaning and replacing the items inside.
Can Cleaning Restore Smoke-Damaged Electronics?
Electronics damaged by fire will likely need to be replaced, but it may be possible for fire cleanup experts to restore appliances and devices that have only sustained smoke damage. There are several methods that may restore the functionality of items exposed to smoke.
Clearing Out Corrosion
Smoke contains acidic compounds and water vapor that combine to cause corrosion on metal components such as circuits. Electronics cleaning experts may:
• Remove corrosion
• Prevent short-circuiting
• Reduce the risk of an electric fire
It is unsafe to use electronics that have corroded components. It is safest to rely on the expertise of fire cleanup experts in a controlled off-site location than to attempt to clean corrosion.
Cleaning off Black Film
Another telltale sign of smoke damage is a black film that forms across internal electronic components. This film is caused by smoke and soot and:
• Adheres to dirt or dust
• Can cause overheating
• May prevent devices from functioning
Cleanup professionals can also safely remove this black film, which may restore the normal functionality of electronics. It is important to use specialized cleaning and repair equipment to avoid further damaging delicate parts.
Safely Testing Electronics
You may run the risk of starting another fire by attempting to test electronics damaged by excessive heat or smoke. It is safer to allow experienced professionals to attempt to clean damage and then test items in an off-site facility. In addition to testing, these specialists can provide:
• Data recovery or backup
• Proof of damage or loss
• Restored electronics
It is best to hand off electronics to a content cleaning service to have restoration attempted elsewhere. Items with irreparable damage should be claimed as losses and replaced.
Electronics cleaning experts are likely to have the best results when it comes to restoring electronics. Rely on a fire cleanup firm that provides off-site content cleaning and storage in Prescott, AZ.
Can a Water Leak Cost My Business Thousands of Dollars?
Water leaks can cause major damage in your home
A water leak can be obvious, like after a pipe break or water main accident. Other leaks may be so low-key that they aren’t detected until they become a huge problem. Below are some tips for discovering hidden leaks before they cost you a ton of money in water damage repairs.
Ways To Check for Hidden Leaks
Check the water meter. This is one of the easiest ways to detect a water leak. Turn off all the water in your building and watch the meter. If it begins to change, this signals a leak that is moving fast. If the meter doesn’t change right away, leave it for 2 hours and then check again. If it changed after 2 hours, you likely have a slow leak.
Look at your water bill and usage. Compare your current bill and usage with previous months’ information. If your usage and bill have increased substantially, without any significant changes in habits, this would indicate a leak somewhere in the building.
Inspect the building’s exterior. Make sure that water hose connections are tightly secured and there is no pooling water anywhere on the lawn. A professional should inspect the irrigation system at least once a year to make sure there are no leaks in the system.
Test for toilet leaks. Grab some liquid food coloring and put a few drops into the toilet tank. After 10 minutes, check the toilet bowl. If the food coloring appears in the bowl, you have a toilet leak.
How to Handle Leaks
A leaky faucet may be easy to fix by replacing seat washers or reinforcing a seal. Most hidden leaks, however, take the eye of an experienced plumber to remedy the situation.
If you suspect a water leak in your building in Black Canyon City, AZ, don’t hesitate to call a professional. You will reduce the risk of water damage by tackling the problem head on.
How Mold Spreads Through an HVAC System
Clean ducts to prevent a building from becoming recontaminated
By spreading mold spores throughout a building, an HVAC system can lower air quality and raise the risk of a widespread infestation. Air circulation is particularly risky for infestations involving toxigenic species such as black mold. Learn more about how an HVAC system can complicate a mold problem.
Spores Enter the System
Mold spores may start growing in ducts dampened by a plumbing or roof leak or enter ductwork through return vents. Several components in a central air conditioning unit are also prone to develop mold without regular maintenance:
- Drain pan
- Evaporator coil
Spores in an HVAC system will circulate throughout a structure. Mold growth and residual spores must be eliminated to reduce the risk of re-contamination after mold removal.
Spores Spread Through Ductwork
Whether spores travel through air ducts or settle down in ducts and start to multiply, these HVAC components can put an entire building at risk of becoming infested with mold. The problem may be even more severe if black mold or another toxigenic species of fungi is present. In addition to intensifying a mold problem, spores diminish air quality throughout a building.
Mold Grows In Conducive Environments
An infestation can spread wherever moisture levels are elevated and food sources are available. This can cause a minor mold issue to quickly become a major problem that requires extensive cleanup and remediation.
No matter how spores end up in an HVAC system, it is important to limit circulation to stop the spread of an infestation. A building owner or manager who suspects that mold may be present should turn off climate control and fans at a building in Yava, AZ, arrange for a mold inspection, and take steps toward remediation. Regardless of whether black mold or a less toxigenic species is present, it is still necessary to clean ducts to prevent a building from becoming recontaminated.
How Property Managers Can Handle Hurricanes in 3 Steps
Preparing for natural disasters like hurricanes can be tricky
Get Ready For Hurricanes by Implementing the Following Steps
Preparing for natural disasters like hurricanes can be tricky, especially if you work in property management. You are responsible for overseeing multiple units, your employees, and your tenants. To reduce hurricane damage and save countless lives, you will need to prepare before hurricane season hits Dewey- Humboldt, AZ, from June to November. Get ready for hurricanes and other incidents by implementing the following steps.
1. Create a Hurricane Emergency Plan
Before the season starts, take an inventory of the properties under management, create an updated list of renters and take note of resources important for recovery, such as insurance providers and professional storm damage restoration companies. After that, review your current storm policies, and see if they match the needs and concerns of the employees and occupants. Make the necessary corrections and craft a plan that covers evacuation, damage remediation, and the roles individuals play in ensuring safety and repair assistance.
2. Inform Employees and Tenants
Now that you have created a hurricane preparedness plan, it is time to communicate it to your crew and tenants. Prioritize using the direct approach when discussing finding safety resources, minimizing hurricane damage, and fulfilling responsibilities inherent to their roles. Remind them of resources available to them, such as renters' insurance, information about flood zones, and remediation services. When discussing these plans, remember to prioritize their safety above all else.
3. Handle the Aftermath
A crucial element of a hurricane plan involves dealing with the storm's aftermath. Go through your tenant and employee contacts, and call them to confirm their wellbeing and current status. Show compassion and empathy throughout these conversations. Afterward, once the hurricane has passed and the area is safe, go through the property and record all existing damage. This information will be useful when talking to your insurance provider and repair crew.
Managing several rental properties in Dewey- Humboldt, AZ, can be difficult, especially during the middle of a weather event. Work with your organization and tenants to create a plan that mitigates hurricane damage, saves lives, and more.
Prioritize Fire Safety With These Four Tips
Stock fire extinguishers in your building
Prioritize Fire Safety With These Four Tips
If a business fire strikes in Lake Montezuma, AZ, do staff members know how to act quickly, safeguarding themselves and others? It's pivotal that proprietors proactively inform and prepare employees. The right equipment should be in place, and the managers should consistently educate others about procedures.
1. Stock Fire Extinguishers
A big part of fire preparation is mitigating the flames. If you can safely reduce the blaze before the fire department arrives, then you are a step ahead of the game. That means ensuring that fire extinguishers are readily available throughout the building. Keep in mind the following:
- They are mounted for easy accessibility
- They are less than a year old
- They are placed one for every 75 feet
- They are near any chemical or electrical hazard zones
- They are free from obstructions
Don't risk your safety, though. Leave when you need to and allow a fire restoration company to handle whatever destruction occurs.
2. Look Over Electrical Equipment
Sparks can start in seconds, so, to avoid a business fire, monitor your electrical activity. Are the outlets working properly? Ensure wires are not exposed and all covers should are tightly secured. In addition, extension cords should not be used permanently.
3. Store Items Properly
Chemical reactions can create fire damage quickly. Therefore, ensure that substances are stored properly and that the company has established regulations and protocols for how to handle and store these materials. All of the combustible items should be labeled clearly and kept far away from your electrical panels and sources. In addition, they should be left in particular locations.
4. Practice Evacuations
When you were little, the alarms went off and you followed your teacher in a straight line out the door. You knew that drill so well because you practiced it often. Just because people are older doesn't mean they don't require a plan. Therefore, have clear procedures for emergency departures. Discuss it in meetings, post maps around the offices and run through drills periodically.
In the midst of a business fire, people need reassurance that they have the resources and knowledge to protect themselves and others.
Mold Prevention Strategies
Keep humidity below 50%
If your Chino Valley, AZ, home is prone to water damage or located in a humid area, you may experience frequent mold infestations. Fortunately, with a little preventive maintenance, you can help your home stay mold-free.
Keep Your Home Dry
Mold needs three things to grow: adequate warmth, a food source, and a water source. Unfortunately, many homes have all three. Most indoor locations are warm enough to support mold growth, and homes have a variety of food sources, such as dust and paper products. The easiest of the three requirements to eliminate is the water source. The following actions can help you keep your home dry enough to avoid a mold problem:
- Keep humidity below 50%
- Dry up spills immediately
- Clean up water damage as soon as possible
- Run a dehumidifier in wet areas like bathrooms and basements
Other Mold-Prevention Techniques
Although keeping your home dry is the most important component of mold prevention, there are some other steps you can take to minimize the chances of a mold infestation. Reducing the number of mold spores in your home is a particularly helpful goal. Although the spores are invisible and nearly everywhere, it is possible to trap them using HEPA filters. HEPA filters can be found in air purifiers and vacuum cleaners. Additionally, you can install HEPA filters in your HVAC system. Make sure to change or clean all filters regularly according to the manufacturer's directions.
Another method for decreasing the likelihood of a mold infestation is using anti-mold products. You can install mold-resistant drywall, insulation, carpet, and other materials in areas that are especially prone to mold growth. Additionally, you can apply a mold-inhibitor to some surfaces such as upholstery and wood. Make sure to follow manufacturer's instructions to avoid damaging delicate surfaces.
Even the most fastidious homeowner can experience a mold infestation. If you need help cleaning up water damage or mold growth, a professional restoration service can help you get your home back to normal quickly and safely.
3 Musts To Mitigate Flood Damage
Try to relocate anything in a low-lying area to higher ground
Three Preparation Stages
When Mother Nature decides to unleash a tremendous system, business owners in Campo Verde, AZ, can't know for sure the destruction they'll face. Sometimes the land will hold with no problems at all. Other times, life has different plans with flooding moving in and ruining merchandise and belongings. Is it possible to avoid such trouble? There are measures that proprietor's can take to reduce the likelihood of major complications. While not foolproof, here are three preparation stages.
1. Move What You Can
One significant issue with flood damage is property loss. The more that gets wet, the more that needs to be replaced. Therefore, if possible, try to relocate anything in a low-lying area to higher ground. This includes fixtures and items. Look for rooms that have fewer windows, cracks, and outlets. If you have a second story, shift it there. The more that is dry, the better.
2. Create a Barrier
Try to establish a waterproof boundary. Fill in holes or crevices prior to the storm's arrival. In addition, check windows and doors for anything that may allow penetration. Board and seal up what you can, keeping the flooding out. Finally, work to establish a wall around the perimeter. Most often businesses use sandbags, available at stores or through emergency services. You'll want to be careful with these. Pile them up like patchwork, with flaps not exposed. The intention is to lock out the moisture.
3. Turn off Electric and Gas
If you're leaving the premises and can turn off the electric or gas, consider doing so. The storm damage could interfere with it. Furthermore, upon return, do not inspect the location on your own, especially if water infiltrated. Instead, seek the assistance of a professional water remediation team. They can overlook the structure, verifying whether it's safe to enter.
While tempting to say you can escape flooding, it's not always possible; however, owners may fight it off, reducing the disaster. Keep things high, barricade what you can and watch your utilities.
We are Cleaning Experts
We can handle residential and commercial cleaning jobs
SERVPRO is Here to Help during this time of need
During this unprecedented time caused by the global pandemic of coronavirus, this is a reminder to our customers that we are specialists in cleaning services, and we adhere to the highest cleaning and sanitation standards.
We are prepared to clean and disinfect your home or business, according to protocols set forth by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. We have years of experience in dealing with biological contaminants, and we will go beyond the scope of work that regular janitorial staff perform on a daily basis.
The CDC encourages cleaning of high-touch surfaces such as counters, tabletops, doorknobs, light switches, bathroom fixtures, toilets, phones, keyboards, tablets and tables. Other spaces mentioned in the CDC’s guidance for commercial spaces include:
- Kitchen/Food Areas
- Retail Spaces
- Water Fountains
- Sales Counters
- Carpets and Rugs
- Stair Handrails
- Elevator Cars
- Playground Equipment
- Fitness Equipment
The CDC recommends usage of a labeled hospital-grade disinfectant with claims against similar pathogens to the coronavirus. Multiple products in the SERVPRO product line carry the EPA-approved emerging pathogens claims. While there is currently no product tested against this particular strain of the coronavirus, we are following all guidelines as provided by the CDC and local authorities.
Call Today for a Proactive Cleaning
If your home or business needs deep cleaning services, call the experts today – SERVPRO of Yavapai County, (928) 636-7600
What Type of Insurance Do I Need For My Small Business?
Flooded entry of property in Cottonwood, AZ
If you own a small business in Cottonwood, AZ, having adequate insurance coverage for your facility is a must. Business insurance will protect your company from losses caused by unexpected incidents that occur during normal business operations. The property insurance clause in your average policy, however, does not include storm insurance, which would cover damage caused by hurricanes and other flooding disasters.
Types of Commercial Insurance
Property Insurance – Much like homeowners’ insurance, this coverage protects the physical building and its contents against damage from fires and theft. If the facility is destroyed, insurance will help pay the costs of rebuilding.
General Liability Insurance – This type of insurance covers any liability claims associated with bodily injury or property damage.
Business Owner’s Insurance – For small businesses, it makes sense to combine property insurance and general liability insurance into one package to save money and lower your premium.
Workers’ Compensation – This policy, which is required by most states, covers lost wages and medical costs for any employee who is hurt while on the job. It also protects your company from litigation.
Flood Insurance – Any business that operates in areas prone to hurricanes should have an insurance policy that covers flooding. This coverage would reimburse you for building repairs, such as carpeting, window treatments, and drywall. Damaged equipment, such as computers and other electronics, as well as furniture, will also be replaced.
What Isn’t Covered Under Flood Insurance
Any damage that was caused by mildew or mold that can’t be attributed to the flood would not be covered.
Property that is located outside of the insured building would not be covered. This includes trees, fences, and other landscaping.
Monetary losses due to the interruption of business operations won’t be covered under the typical storm insurance policy. Business interruption insurance can be added to your policy.
It is important to discuss your storm insurance concerns with your agent to ensure your building and employees are protected in all emergency situations.
What To Know About Water Heater Noise
In some cases, your water heater could be making sounds that may indicate there’s a problem
What To Know About Water Heater Noise
If you have a water heater in your Bagdad, AZ, home, you may have noticed the occasional noises coming from the unit. These noises can be anything from a humming or whistling sound, to clanging or banging. Each noise may mean something different so it’s important to know what these sounds mean. Here are a few things you may want to know.
1. Some Noises Are Normal
In some cases your unit may make some humming sounds as it heats up. In many instances this humming is perfectly normal. However, if it bothers you it may be remedied by tightening the heating element. If you hear a singing or screeching sound it may be that a valve in partially closed and needs to be opened all the way.
2. Some Noises Could Indicate a problem
In some cases your water heater could be making sounds that may indicate there’s a problem. Crackling or popping sounds could indicate sediment stuck to the bottom of the tank. Similarly you may hear banging sounds as sediment is carried around the tank by the heated current. If there is sediment in the tank contacting a professional to perform a water heater flush may remedy the problem.
3. A Professional Can Help
If you think you have a problem with your heater, or if you find a leak or flooding water in the area, then it’s best to contact a water damage restoration service as quickly as possible. Fixing the source of the leak and cleaning up the water quickly can help you avoid long term damage to the home. You may also want to also the team making repairs to look for possible related damages such as mold growth.
If you’ve been hearing sounds from your water heater it’s important to identify what the sounds are so that you can determine if there may be a problem. Certain sounds may be normal while others could indicate potential issues. When in doubt always contact a professional for help.
4 Essential Maintenance Steps To Take Before Turning on Your Sprinkler System in the Spring
Water clean up in Prescott Valley, AZ
If your sprinkler system has been dormant all winter long, immediately turning it back on when spring starts can be disastrous. Sprinkler flooding can wreak havoc on your business in Prescott Valley, AZ, causing extensive damage to your landscape and even to the structure of your building. To avoid creating a huge mess and needing unnecessary water damage restoration services, irrigation maintenance is essential. Always take care to complete the following steps before attempting to turn on your commercial sprinkler system and work with a professional landscape company or irrigation expert to ensure your system is ready to go.
Check Drain Valves
Close all the manual drain valves and open the main valve to the sprinkler system. Check each valve box for frayed wires or leaks.
Inspect the Vacuum Breaker
The vacuum breaker requires irrigation maintenance to prevent backflow into drinking water pipes. Check for any leaks or spring tension. Ensure the test valves are closed and turned at a 45-degree angle.
Clean and Adjust Sprinkler Heads
Locate every sprinkler head and make sure they haven’t been damaged or buried. Clean off any dirt or grime from the head so the can water spray out correctly. Adjust the position of the sprinkler heads, ensuring they are aimed directly at the lawn and plants. If not, the water may be aimed at sidewalks, driveways, or the outside of your building.
Look for Signs of a Broken Pipe
A broken water line or pipe is a common cause of sprinkler flooding, especially after an exceptionally colder winter. Look for any signs of cracks or breaks in piping. Puddles and water bubbling under the grass are other indicators of a broken pipe.
By working with a sprinkler irrigation specialist, you can ensure all of these irrigation maintenance tasks are completed and that your system is ready for the spring. If at any point you notice your system start to flood, turn off the water supply to avoid damage and get help.
How Many Days Will Mold Removal Take?
Severe mold infestation in a Yava, AZ building
If your company experiences a mold problem in Yava, AZ, you will likely have a number of questions. The goal, of course, is to get your business cleaned up with an efficient mold removal program. Will this take weeks or longer, or can a professional mold remediation company complete the process more quickly? Each situation is different, and the speed of the process depends on how extensive the mold problem is on the property. It also depends upon how long the mold growth has been present, as microscopic mold spores can spread throughout a building in as little as 48 to 72 hours.
The Best Process for Mold Removal
Always work with a company that has the training, equipment, and experience to take care of problems such as black mold. Technicians will understand that water damage is likely the cause for mold, and they will begin by making sure any excess water or leaks on the property are taken care of. Once this is fixed, the process involves the following proven steps:
- Damage assessment
- Mold containment and cleanup
- Restoration of materials contaminated with mold
- Replacement of ruined materials
- Application of antimicrobial and anti-fungal cleaning agents
In many cases, the complete cleanup can be completed in three to seven days. This will remove mold growth to normal, natural levels and restore the building to the way it was before mold was found.
The Top Results
Professional mold remediation in a commercial building presents many challenges, which is why working with the right company is so important. You want the job done quickly so your company can return to what it does best. You want the job done safely so your employees and customers are never in danger of breathing tainted air. Finally, you want the job done right so mold growth on your property will not return. A quick professional process makes mold removal "Like it never even happened."
How To Handle an Overflow?
Clogged toilet in Prescott Valley, AZ
How To Handle an Overflow?
Keep in mind that water lines run throughout the building, each one affecting the other. If liquid cannot escape through the drainage system, that bacterial-filled fluid ends up somewhere. That means running anything from a washing machine to a shower could cause a toilet to overflow, damaging property and creating a work hazard. Prevent your need for sewage cleaning by remaining proactive, tending to issues as they happen. Small steps such as these can save proprietors and insurers major dollars and time.
1. What Are the Signs of a Potential Clog?
Before a toilet overflow occurs, business owners in Prescott Valley, AZ, may notice several minor changes in the efficiency of the plumbing, warning that trouble is imminent. In fact, any of the following symptoms could indicate sewer line complications:
- Slow drainage
- Unusual odor
- Gurgling or bubbling noises
- Standing water outside or inside the drain line
2. How Can You Push Out the Obstruction?
Avoid the cost of sewage cleanup by acting swiftly. Before it spills over onto tile or carpet, grab an auger, also known as a snake, and run it through the toilet or drain. A long one will be needed, possibly up to 15 feet. Push it as far as you need. The tool should dislodge the obstacle, reestablishing proper flow. This can be done throughout the premises. If the blockage cannot be reached, try the same procedure with the outside drainage line. Locate the white cap, and try the auger there as well.
3. When Do You Call the Professionals?
Rely on a reliable water remediation team to get to the source of the problem, sanitize and rebuild. With the clogged pipe cleared, focus on assessing the area and eliminating any category 3 water contamination. With service available all day any day, service's like SERVPRO can move in immediately, eliminating long wait times and secondary damage. This can reduce costs, decrease labor demands and salvage valuable assets.
Keep a close on eye on how everything works. Don't hesitate to investigate or have professionals out to inspect the premises and perform sewage cleanup.