Strategies to Prepare Your Business for Storm Season 2021
Storm Damaged Roof
Many of us are now preparing our homes and businesses for what could potentially be some of the worst storms we've seen in years. There are plenty of things you can do now or before the storm season starts to prepare your business for any potential disasters.
Create an emergency plan.
This emergency plan should be created with your employees in mind and should include what the building’s evacuation procedures are, how customers will be notified if a storm is approaching, where you can go to stay safe during storms or disasters, and much more. Be sure that everyone on staff knows about this storm damage restoration plan so they can reference it when disaster strikes.
Create a list of emergency numbers to keep on hand at your business, in case you need to call someone for help once the storm hits. The employees who will be working during storms or disasters should also have this information readily available so they can contact loved ones and check in with them if communication is limited after a disaster.
Set up an emergency response team.
It's important to know who you should call first in the case of a disaster or an emergency at your business. You'll want to have several key people on this team, such as local authorities (police and fire departments), rescue workers, storm damage cleanup services, insurance providers, etc. The aftermath of a storm can be chaotic so it’s important to have a proper plan and contact information for storm damage restoration.
Take inventory of what's inside your facility.
It's important to know what kind of equipment, facilities, or supplies you have inside your building. You'll want to take inventory of every piece of technology and valuable item so that if something is damaged by a storm, it can be replaced quickly without much hassle. More importantly, it will be sorted easily with storm damage cleanup services.
Stock up on emergency supplies and prepare your facility.
Include things like food, water (for both employees and any pets that are in your care), first aid kits, flashlights, batteries for radios, or other pieces of technology you may use during a storm season. Clean up the exterior of your building to limit potential damage from storms and falling objects.
Stay informed of forecasts from your local weather station.
This is one of the most important things you can do to stay safe during a storm season or a disaster. Make sure that all employees are aware of what's going on in their area and have watches, warnings, etc., readily available if necessary so they know when it might be time for an evacuation order or other emergencies.
As we've seen in the past couple of years, storms and disasters can hit at any time. The best thing you can do to prepare your business for storm season is come up with an emergency plan of time and have it readily available and accessible for employees, so they know what needs to be done if disaster strikes.
5 Useful Tips to Remember When Dealing with Fire Damage
Kitchen fires can cause serious damage.
A fire can be a devastating experience for anyone, but it is especially hard for those who don't know what to do when faced with the aftermath of a fire. According to a 2020 report issued by the National Fire Protection Association, a fire department in the U.S responds to a fire every 24 seconds. If you’re dealing with fire damage, try not to panic and call for professional help. The best thing you can do is seek help from fire damage restoration services as soon as possible.
Here are useful tips to remember when handling fire damage to prepare you if your home or business ever suffers an unfortunate event like this one.
Open windows in the room where fire damage has taken place for ventilation.
The first thing you should do after a fire is to get some fresh air into the room in which you have suffered from fire damage. Open all windows and doors to remove toxic smoke particles that can cause irritation of the throat, nose, or lungs and need medical attention later on. If you have a vacuum, use it to suck up any loose smoke particles from furniture, drapes, and carpets.
Turn off all electronics and objects that are near the fire damage, such as computers.
Turn off the main power supply of your home or business to prevent any risk of a fire starting again because someone left an appliance turned on that shouldn't be running until it has been checked by a professional for damage.
Avoid attempting to clean up potential hazards and dangers, including asbestos, mold, or lead paint.
Cleaning up fire damage can release particles and dust into the air which could irritate the eyes, nose, throat, lungs, or skin. There is a risk of poisoning and it's important to leave the clean-up process up to professionals.
Call your insurance company to file a claim as soon as possible.
If you have fire damage, call your insurance company immediately even if it does not seem like anything was damaged by the blaze. There is no point in wasting time and money with unnecessary repairs or expenses when filing a claim can take care of them for you.
Seek professional help if you are unsure about what to do next.
When it comes to fire damage, there is no time for trial and error. Seek the help of a fire & smoke restoration technician as soon as possible if you are uncertain about how to proceed after an unfortunate event like this has happened in your home or business. A fire & smoke restoration technician has access to industry-exclusive tools that allow them to get things back into the condition it was before a fire occurred – "Like it never even happened."
Fire damage can be a life-changing event, but it doesn't have to be devastating if you know what steps to take after the fire is put out. You can save time and money by seeking the help of fire damage restoration services right away.
Tips to Choosing the Right Water Damage Restoration Company
Water damage can be serious.
Dealing with damage from a flood or a burst pipe in your home is stressful, and the last thing you want to do is deal with an incompetent or unprofessional water damage restoration company. It's not uncommon for people who have never dealt with flooding before to get overwhelmed by everything they need to do to handle their flooded home or business. That's why we put together this blog post about tips for choosing a water damage restoration company - because we want everyone who has been impacted by flooding to get help from an expert!
Choose a water damage restoration company that can perform the following:
Provides a thorough plan for dealing with damage.
Whether it's a business or your home, you want to work with an expert who has the tools and expertise necessary for getting started right away. A reliable and experienced water restoration technician should be able to provide accurate assessment, a checklist of things that need to be made, and an estimate of costs so you will know exactly what to do before you proceed with the water damage restoration services.
Employs certified and well-trained staff.
When looking for a water damage restoration company, look for ones that are appropriately certified and insured in your state. Moreover, consider the expertise of their water restoration technician. Find out the level of training and experience they have and if they are certified to do the job.
Responds immediately when there is an emergency.
It's critical to choose a water restoration business that can respond immediately when you call, as water damage only gets more serious with time. Choose one that responds to calls 24/7 especially that Florida is one of the top states that are most at risk of flooding.
Has a good reputation in your area.
You'll want to do your research about local water damage restoration companies before making a final decision. Look for one that has good reviews and is highly rated by its customers so you can be confident that they will do a good job. See if their customers were satisfied with the work they provided.
Knows how to help you in filing your insurance claims.
Filing for an insurance claim requires thorough documentation of the damage. You can make a lot of mistakes while filing if you don't know what to do. The best water restoration company will have the expertise and experience in this area so you can be sure that they will handle the job properly. You want to choose a company that can help you navigate the insurance claims process so you can file a proper one that can result in full compensation.
When your property and life are destroyed by a water catastrophe, you require assistance that you can trust. It can be overwhelming to deal with everything on your own, but you must take the actions necessary to restore things in order. By following these few tips, we hope you can hire expert water damage restoration services that can help your property look new again.
Basic Procedure For a Fire Restoration Project
Fire damaged room
Seeing your home go up in flames can be an emotionally draining experience. However, you have to act quickly to prevent further destruction. Any delay could potentially drive the damage cleaning costs through the roof as the structure sustains more water damage, and mold builds up in the walls.
Here’s the basic procedure for a fire restoration project:
- Initial contact
- Board up and tarp
- Cleanup and rebuilding
Call a Restoration Company
Call a fire restoration service as the first thing you do after getting off the phone with insurance. Regardless of the time of day, a representative from the cleanup service should pick your call and schedule an inspection ASAP. Consider that as an essential feature of a restoration company when shopping around.
The cleanup service should come to check out the damage. During this visit, the expert will be assessing the extent of fire, soot, and smoke damage throughout the house. They will also identify things that can be salvaged and those that need replacement. At the end of this exercise, the service should be able to give an accurate quote for the job.
Board up and Tarp Services
On the first day of work, the restoration team will start by sealing any holes in the house. For example, if a fire burns a hole through the roof, sealing it will keep rainwater out, preventing further water damage and mold growth.
Clean up and Rebuilding
Your average restoration services will clean up the soot, get rid of burnt materials, and remove water from a fire-damaged home. Only the best will go the extra mile to rebuild the structure and make it habitable. Look for a service that covers cleanup to finishing work and everything in between.
Generally speaking, fire restoration is a multistep process that will breathe life into your burnt structure, making it a home again.
How Do You Get a Mold Assessment for Your Home?
Mold is likely to grow somewhere in your home at some point.
Before a home can have its mold problem addressed, it needs to have a high-quality mold assessment done. There are two basic ways to do this: either run a DIY test or have a professional inspection. In all cases, experts recommend having a professional do it.
What Is Black Mold?
In its natural environment, mold is kept in careful check by the sun. It can only grow in areas almost continuously in shade and subject to dampness. It also must compete with other fungi for the nutrients needed for its growth when it grows outside.
All mold needs lots of moisture to grow. Inside a home, this normally comes from sources such as
- Plumbing leaks
- Sewer leaks
- Roof leaks
Mold can really find a safe harbor indoors. It loves to grow on cellulose, such as that found in wallboard and wood. Plus, mold spores are everywhere, with hundreds found in a typical cubic meter of air. This is normally harmless and of no concern. However, it becomes a problem when exposed to frequent excess moisture.
What Is a Mold Assessment?
When a mold remediation expert performs an inspection, it doesn’t just include a test. They bring commercial equipment, such as a hygrometer and infrared camera, to search for hidden water leaks.
Black mold is a serious problem, but even worse is the water damage being caused by the leak. If it goes on long, it can easily cause thousands of dollars in damage – and it might not be covered by insurance if you’re found negligent. Indoor mold growth is always a key sign of dampness getting where it shouldn’t, so never ignore it.
However, it differs from mildew. Mold only grows on porous surfaces with nutrients available as food. Mildew grows on grout and tile and usually can be easily cleaned up by the homeowner with a solution of bleach and water.
A good mold assessment can find hidden water leaks before they cause severe damage. A simple DIY test isn’t enough information to make a proper appraisal, though.
3 Ways to Mitigate Wind Damage
Wind can cause serious damage to your home.
Three Ways To Limit Wind Damage
Damage caused by wind can occur alongside storm damage or separately due to strong gusts. In the worst-case scenario, wind damage to the roof, windows or any other part of a commercial structure could result in a roof leak or expose the interior. Here are three ways to limit wind damage to the exterior and interior of a commercial building.
1. Inspect a Structure for Wind Damage
After a windstorm subsides, the owner or manager of a commercial building can identify several signs of damage. Missing shingles may be evident on a pitched roof or on the ground. It may also be helpful to go up on the roof or arrange for a professional roof inspection after windy weather.
2. Board Up or Tarp Over Breaches
Any breaches in a structure should be covered. While missing roofing materials may lead to a roof leak, a broken window or damaged door can leave a building open to the intrusion of flying debris, rain or trespassers. Board up accessible openings in a building or use tarps and anchor boards to prevent rain from penetrating into damaged roofing until repairs take place.
3. Restore Damage As Soon As Possible
It is a good idea to repair a damaged roof or other types of damage caused by wind sooner rather than later. Even if high winds are expected to continue, a well-maintained or recently repaired structure may be less susceptible to repeated damage, whereas a structure that has already sustained damage may suffer more severe storm damage.
High winds can cause a roof leak and damage the enclosure of a commercial building. If loose flashing or the failure of a window or door compromises any part of a structure, storm damage restoration will be necessary to address external problems that expose a building interior to storm damage.
Why Mold Grows in HVAC Air Ducts
You can find mold growth in the humid and dark areas of your HVAC system.
Mold can grow in most areas of commercial buildings in DeLand, Florida, especially if they provide the right conditions. Its effects are dangerous for building materials, causing severe damage if left untreated. HVAC systems circulate mold around the building and provide the humid conditions it needs to thrive. HVAC cleaning is especially important for commercial buildings to prevent the growth of unwanted mold.
The Conditions for Mold Growth in HVAC Systems
You can find mold growth in the humid and dark areas of your HVAC system, such as:
- The drip pan
- The AC evaporator coils
- The air ducts
Mold thrives in moist environmental conditions where it can find a host with the right nutrients. The dust in the ducts provides mold with nutrients and the dark, humid environment gives it the preferable conditions to grow. If the drip pan and AC evaporator coil are not cleaned regularly, they can also provide fungus the essential conditions for growth. It is important to conduct routine HVAC cleaning to prevent these parts from becoming worn or damaged.
Mold Prevention for HVAC Systems
To prevent mold growth on HVAC systems, make sure the air filters are routinely cleaned or replaced. HEPA filters are capable of filtering out the smallest air particles, making them ideal for filtering mold spores. Regular professional HVAC maintenance is also an essential part of mold prevention. It is recommended that this be done twice a year for commercial buildings. Routinely inspect your HVAC system for mold on air vents. Cleaning vents regularly will also prevent additional mold particles from circulating through your HVAC system.
Regular HVAC cleaning is necessary for mold prevention for commercial buildings and should be done by a professional mold cleaning service at least twice a year. If you have mold damage in your building, it is likely the mold is traveling through your HVAC system. Good filtration and regular maintenance can prevent mold growth and make your commercial building a cleaner, health-friendly environment.
4 Candle Alternatives for Fire Safety
Strings of lights are designed with fire safety in mind
Here are Four Fire-Safe Candle Alternatives
Candles are used to create decorative lighting effects or release fragrances. Whether you are looking for safer mood lighting or a way to diffuse a scent without any risk of a candle fire, here are four fire-safe candle alternatives.
1. Battery-Powered Candles
A flameless electric alternative to candles can be placed anywhere for decorative or lighting purposes. Electric candles come in a wide variety of colors, heights, thicknesses and designs. Some battery-powered models are also designed to release fragrances.
2. Strings of Lights
Another way to get a candle-lit look is to string up Christmas or fairy lights. Strings of lights are designed with fire safety in mind. Choose from strands of single-color or multicolor bulbs. It is also possible to set up lights to blink or flicker if desired. Ultra-efficient LED bulbs make replacements affordable and keep energy costs low.
3. Candle Warmers
A candle warmer may be the best option among these candle alternatives for fans of scented candles. A warmer makes it possible to enjoy these fragrances with a much lower fire risk. A warmer may be a base on which a candle sits or resemble a lamp.
Reed diffusers do not resemble candles. For a different look, reeds in oil can be an attractive, creative and flameless way to release a scent. Diffusers have an even lower risk of fire than an electric candle warmer.
Most candle fires occur around the holidays. Battery-powered candle alternatives and strings of lights are safer options for illuminated decorations. Warmers and diffusers are useful for spreading a fragrance throughout a home with a lower risk of fire. If a fire starts due to a candle or any other cause, you should attempt to extinguish the flames or contact the fire department. Fire damage restoration experts can restore or replace damaged building materials at a residence in Volusia County.
Routine Bathroom Maintenance Can Prevent Leaks
Bathroom maintenance can prevent leaks
Timely Bathroom Maintenance Can Prevent Leaks
If you own a home or rent, it's a good idea to become familiar with your plumbing system. This could save you time and money as well as prevent a major problem. The mainline brings freshwater into your building, and from there, you have several supply lines that eventually bring water to individual faucets and appliances, often by way of smaller branch lines. Supply line damage, since it usually carries a large amount of water, can quickly flood your home in Seminole County. Therefore, a smart homeowner pays attention to the condition of the supply lines.
The Need for Maintenance
If you have resided in your location for years, you might even know the history of your supply lines and when they last received maintenance. Knowing the following facts will help you keep tabs on the potential for a supply line leak:
- The age of the pipes
- The material of the pipes
- The date of the last major plumbing upgrade
- The length of any warranty from the plumbing contractor or the pipe manufacturer
Some materials last longer than others. Plastic piping becomes vulnerable to supply line damage after about five to eight years; of course, it could last much longer, but it usually will be not be warrantied for any longer. On the other hand, steel braided piping often has a lifetime warranty on materials.
The Need for Water Cleanup
Whether it is from supply line damage or a bathroom leak, water escaping into your home is a serious problem. A professional water remediation team can act quickly to limit the damage. Trained technicians will arrive Faster to Any Size Disaster and remove standing water before it has had time to cause structural damage to floors and walls. They will use powerful vacuums and air dryers to rid the home of excessive humidity, which is often a condition that invites mold growth. If you suspect your supply lines are worn, it might be time to have a plumbing contractor check things out.
What Is Causing Ceiling Tile Discoloration?
Water and mold damaged ceiling
Three Causes Of Ceiling Tile Discoloration
Most commercial facilities have drop ceilings with ceiling tiles. It is not uncommon for these tiles to become damaged over time and require replacement. However, many facility managers may be disheartened to find a single tile or several tiles with stains and assume tile mold. While your mind may immediately jump to mold growth, any remediation service in Volusia County will likely explain that mold is possible, but there are at least three other causes, especially if the staining is recent.
- Plumbing problem
- Roof leak
- HVAC system issue
If your facility is multi-story, then the tile discoloration is likely the result of plumbing issues and not tile mold. Ceiling tiles are incredibly porous and will soak in the water, causing a stain to appear on the other side. Fresh water stains typically look damp; they will likely turn the tile a shade of gray, especially if the tile is a lighter color naturally.
If your facility is a single-story, then you may have a more significant issue than a minor plumbing leak. A roof leak can also result in the discoloration of ceiling tiles because of water damage. You may want to inspect your roof around the area of the staining to ensure that there is no existing external damage.
HVAC System Issue
If your facility has roof-mounted HVAC units, it is possible that the staining is a result of leaking from the condensation line or system and not mold. If you have an A/C unit above or near where the staining appeared, then you may want to contact an HVAC repair specialist.
While tile mold is a concern for any business because of the inevitable business interruption, it is not always the reason for tile staining. If you are genuinely concerned about the possibility of mold and cannot find any other likely causes for the staining, then contact a mold remediation company for a property assessment.