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Securing Your Property After a Fire

1/10/2020 (Permalink)

Building destroyed after a fire, security fence Give SERVPRO a call after commercial fire damage.

How Can You Secure Your Property?

After a fire at your property in Oviedo, FL you may have more to worry about than fire damage. Security at a fire-damaged property can be difficult, when often areas exposed by fire make any locking doors defunct; security systems may be too damaged to operate. You may have to contend with looting, or with animals entering open areas. So how can you secure your property?

The Best Steps to Take

While your property won’t be wholly secure until it’s been completely restored and all security systems effectively replaced, you can still take precautions to prevent vandalism and other issues. Those precautions include:

• Boarding up any openings in the building. If the building doesn’t provide easy access, many looters and vandals will give up before they might get caught trying to pry the boards free. This can also help keep animals out.
• Installing motion sensor lights. Putting motion sensor lights around the property in the short term can stop many animals and looters in their tracks, and will usually scare both humans and creatures away.
• Removing anything that survived fire damage from the property. This should be a major part of fire cleanup anyway, but if you remove anything surviving of value from the property, this removes the temptation to loot as well.
• Putting up temporary fencing. Temporary fencing such as chain-link fencing gives you the option to at least put a padlock on the fence, and add an additional deterrent to invasion.

While none of these methods are foolproof, they’re still a good stopgap in the short term while you take the chance to assess fire damage and make plans for cleanup and restoration. No property owner deserves to lose what things of value they have left after already suffering the devastation of a fire. Take precautions, and secure your valuable property before human or animal invaders can do additional damage.

Why You Should Act Quickly With Water Damage?

1/10/2020 (Permalink)

White water pipe leaking Fix plumbing leaks quickly. The steady stream of the leak will attract mold growth and become a bigger problem

Why You Should Act Quickly With Water Damage?

When water damage appears, you may wonder what steps you need to take. Should you just call a plumber, or do you look to take on extra measures? Because fluid acts as a catalyst for fungus, leaks and puddles mean more than simply grabbing paper towels and replacing a fixture. Business owners in Winter Springs, FL, need to seek immediate assistance to determine whether an underlying complication has developed. Then, the experts should complete the following steps.

1. Find It Fast

Mold growth occurs quickly, often within one to two days. That means that a small leak could become a significant hazard within a short amount of time. Keep an eye open for changes. Ceilings may look discolored, carpet might seem damp and a musty odor could permeate the room. Any of the symptoms should be treated seriously. Call in a mold remediation team to inspect the establishment, determining how much of the space is affected.

2. Attend to the Issue

Water damage needs immediate attention. The initial trouble needs repair, and moisture removal needs to happen. Have industrial dehumidifiers brought in to treat the space, and trash anything polluted. This includes carpet pads, baseboards and drywall. These objects, because they are porous, cannot be thoroughly sanitized. Have them replaced with new materials.

3. Keep It Clean

Establish routines that encourage mold prevention. Since spores travel in the air, they can move about a location through the vents. Air conditioning companies can clean vents, sucking out the dust and particles that harbor there. This could help reduce exposure. In addition, vacuum regularly with a device that uses a HEPA filter, pulling up anything that might harbor within carpet fibers. Since the carpet pad can also host spores, have them steam cleaned once or twice a year. The industrial system can draw out hosts hidden within the padding. Finally, wipe down fixtures regularly.
Pay attention to water damage. By putting it off, you could exasperate the occasion, putting your building and, thus, your business, at risk. Have professionals sanitize it and remove any contaminated sections.

3 Tips To Prepare Your Business for a Dangerous Storm

12/24/2019 (Permalink)

Emergency kit supplies: water bottle, matches, rope, flashlight, blanket You might need to consider an emergency kit supply

Natural disasters can strike at any time and can damage your business so profoundly that recovery can be difficult. Disaster preparedness can help you and your staff mitigate the harm done by storms, floods and other similar incidents. More importantly, you can keep employees, visitors and consumers safe from hazards until the situation calms down. As you create a disaster plan, consider the following tips.

Gather Emergency Supplies

Powerful storms can force everyone inside the building and can cut access to services such as electricity. This means people can miss out on essential survival elements.

  • Food
  • Fresh, clean water
  • Warmth
  • Clean air

Work with employees to create personalized emergency kits that satisfy these basic needs. Be sure to include other important survival items, such as battery-operated flashlights and radios.

Create a Medical Plan

Powerful storms can also restrict staff and visitors from seeking medical assistance. As part of your disaster preparedness plan, you might need to consider potential medical emergencies. Supply offices with medical kits that include first-aid basics such as band-aids, gauze, and blankets. Additionally, talk to employees about their specific medical conditions and incorporate them into the plan. Finally, encourage staff and crew members to take CPR and first-aid lessons as these methods can keep others healthy and safe.

Expect Business Disruption

Business preparedness is also an important aspect of your disaster plan, since a severe storm can heavily impact productivity and output. Think about any potential scenarios that could affect the business and create appropriate responses for each one. If the building is flooded or suffers from water damage, contact an emergency remediation company for inspection and repairs. Create back-up systems for important customer data. Consider alternatives to important utilities such as portable energy generators.
If a storm or another disaster hits Oviedo, FL, it can hurt your employees, your property and your operations. A comprehensive disaster preparedness plan can help your organization stay strong throughout any emergency.

What To Do First When Your Basement Floods

12/12/2019 (Permalink)

Completely flooded basement. It is visible line showing maximum water level higher than 7 feet. Flooded basement in a Geneva, FL home

What To Do First When Your Basement Floods

When your sump pump fails, or storm water breaches your home, your basement takes on water quickly. If water has ended up where it doesn't belong in your Geneva, FL, home, you might benefit from this discussion on responding to a basement flood. Safety will be your first concern.

Essential Safety Considerations

Before anyone contacts the flood water, it is essential you disconnect your electrical panel, so no electricity is running through your home. If your panel is in the flooded area, it’s recommended you call your power company or a flood remediation service. They are trained to safely disengage your electrical.
Once the electrical is addressed, consider these additional precautions before entering the standing water:

  • Closing the area off to children and pets will protect them from possible hazards.
  • Wearing waterproof boots and gloves can prevent injuries.
  • Opening windows will ventilate the basement and begin drying the water-damaged surfaces.

Following these precautions can make your cleanup and restoration process safer and easier. Now you can assess the best cleanup strategy.

Basement Flood Cleanup

If water enters your home at ground level or through a failed sump pump, it’s considered to be highly contaminated. It can be dangerous to clean up without professional support. Specialists can safely and quickly remove the water and begin the restoration process.
If your standing water is very shallow and your electricity is off, you can begin removing wet items and placing them in a drying area, such as a garage. A wet vacuum is the best way to extract the water from the basement. You may need to run an extension cord to a neighbor or obtain a generator.
Once the water is removed, it makes sense to consult your agent about insurance coverage. If you plan to use professional cleanup assistance, you can inquire about coverage for water remediation services.
A basement flood can be unsettling, and the initial chaos stressful. After fully addressing safety concerns, you can determine your cleanup strategy based on the extent of the damage. The process may take a little time, but each step will move you closer to restoring normalcy to your life and your home.

Splitting the Work of Fire Recovery Efforts

12/12/2019 (Permalink)

Warehouse fire inside Fire in an Oviedo, FL warehouse

A fire in your Oviedo, FL, business can mean serious financial losses, especially as water, heat, and smoke damage set in. You may find that equipment and inventory that weren't directly damaged by flames have still been ruined because of the water used in quenching those flames or by greasy soot that settled after the fire is out. Additionally, there may be holes in the roof and walls or broken windows.

What Should You Do?

Even after the fire has been put out, there are things in the water and soot that could make you sick or cause injuries. Rather than trying to clean up, a task best left to fire and smoke cleaning professionals, you should turn your attention to other tasks:

  • Address any injuries. Your own safety and the safety of your staff and clients should be your top priority.
  • Contact your insurance company. Your agent will let you know what you should do first. The company may also recommend a fire and soot damage recovery provider.
  • Take care of employees and customers. Even if personnel and clients weren't present when the fire occurred, the situation may still cause difficulties or rough emotions.
  • If you don't own the building, contact the landlord or property owner.
  • Make sure you share contact information with emergency response professionals, insurance representatives, and other experts.

At this point, one of the most important things for you to remember is that there are many safety and health risks to you and anyone else who enters your building. Leave the bulk of the cleanup to the professionals.

What Do Professionals Do?

When Oviedo, FL, fire and smoke damage professionals arrive, they may begin by securing the property and boarding up any holes in the structure. Next, technicians will assess the extent of the damage and create a plan of action for their smoke cleaning efforts. After completing the cleanup steps, technicians will work on repairing and renovating the building and some of the items inside.

When fire and smoke damage has put your business on hold, direct your attention to safety and protecting yourself against financial losses. Turn to professionals for the cleanup and restoration work.

3 Causes of Mold Growth in the Home

12/4/2019 (Permalink)

Black mold is a common problem for many homeowners. This fungus can be found in many environments and grows easily when it has access to moisture. If you have found mold in your Oviedo, FL house one of the following may be the cause.

1. Storm Damage

There are multiple ways in which storm damage can contribute to the growth of black mold in your home. Perhaps the most obvious is flooding. Floodwater is highly contaminated and can carry mold spores along with bacteria and sewage. If this water sits in your home for an extended period, it is likely that mold damage will occur. Less severe instances of damage, such as leaking roofs or water inside the walls can contribute to mold in these areas as well.

2. Broken Pipes or Appliances

Another common cause of black mold growth is broken or damaged pipes or appliances. These are often clean sources of water that will not bring additional contaminants into the home, but the moisture can cause the fungus to spread. Even small leaks can create problems if they are not taken care of right away. In this case, it is a good idea to turn off the water source to your home to prevent further water and mold damage.

3. High Humidity

In some cases, the appearance of mold is not caused by damage but by a moisture problem. If you have high levels of humidity in your house, mold may begin to grow on various surfaces. One way to help prevent this is to clean everything regularly and make sure to dry your shower and sinks after use. Keeping windows open while cooking or showering may help as well. You can also use a dehumidifier to reduce moisture in the air.

If you find mold in your home, you should have it removed quickly to prevent it from spreading. A mold remediation company can perform an inspection to locate any areas with excessive growth. After the area has been blocked off, mold cleanup will be done to keep the fungus from returning.

3 Ways To Curb Cigarette Fires

11/29/2019 (Permalink)

Ashtray with lots of cigarette butts Ashtrays should never be placed on your lap, on the couch or anywhere else that involves a potentially flammable surface.

Despite the sharp decline of smokers across the nation, the real risk of a cigarette fire has remained ever-present. Despite being easily preventable, fires caused by people smoking are some of the most common home conflagrations. Follow these easy steps to minimize the risk of a cigarette-stoked fire in your Oviedo, FL home.

Learn the Facts About Smoking Fires

The risk of property damage or injury in a cigarette fire has improved over the years. In fact, experts estimated such fires dropped by 73 percent from 1980 to 2011. But when these fires do occur, they can be devastating due to some of these reasons:

Smokers are often impaired when the fire starts.
Fires frequently begin in bedrooms, where there are many flammable materials.
Smoking fires usually occur when people are sleep.

Fortunately, it is relatively simple to avert problems from careless smoking habits. Just follow these simple but vital safety rules to avoid the need for fire cleanup.

Never Mix Alcohol or Sleep and Smoking

Smoking is often done to unwind but beware of getting too relaxed. Smoking when you are tired or drinking alcohol can lead you to doze off. That’s often when people drop a cigarette, which is one of the top ways that these fires happen. Instead, smoke only when you are awake, sober and alert.

Keep Ashtrays Safe

Ashtrays should never be placed on your lap, on the couch or anywhere else that involves a potentially flammable surface. Instead, invest in heavy, non-tip ashtrays. Put them on non-flammable, flat surfaces and keep them there to curb an ashtray fire.

Use Safer Lighters

The lighters used by smokers can be a major source of fires if kids get their hands on them. Keep everyone safe by using child-resistant lighters and keeping them in your pocket or in another safe place.

The only thing worse than a house fire is one you could have prevented. Minimize the risk and expense of cigarette fire cleanup and restoration by using these tips and keeping your family safe.

An Explanation of Black Water

11/15/2019 (Permalink)

Rising water after storm Flooded home in Chuluota, FL

In many instances, water is a welcome sight. It's great for recreation and photo opportunities, handy for cleaning and, of course, it's essential to sustain life. You never want to see flood water in your home, though. This emergency situation could cause significant damage to your Chuluota,FL, property. Water damage isn't the only thing you need to worry about when it comes to flooding. The water can be harmful to you, your loved ones and your pets.

Types of Flooding

Water can make its way into your home in many ways. A simple issue such as an overflowing sink or leaky pipe or faucet may be easy to clean up. However, there are other causes of a flood that can cause much more concern.

Burst pipe
Sewer backup
Breakage of the main city water supply line
Severe storm

The Problem With Flood Water

Water damage from flooding is categorized in three ways: Category 1, Category 2 and Category 3. The third category is the most troublesome because it can be harmful, even lethal, to humans and animals. This type of water is known as black water. It is so named because it contains raw sewage, including human feces, as well as other hazardous materials such as silt.

Stay Away

If a broken sewer line or overflowing toilet causes a flood and water damage in your home, you need to evacuate immediately. Touching the water can cause you to become extremely sick, while ingesting it can kill you. Avoid coming into contact with this type of water. Only professional flood mitigation specialists should get into such water. These crews have the proper protective equipment and will use the right tools and safely remove the water. The team will also thoroughly dry and sanitize the affected area so you can return to your home.
To repair water damage and to remove Category 3 water, make sure you call the pros. This will give you peace of mind and help you avoid significant problems.

3 Tips on How To Prevent Commercial Flood Damage

10/29/2019 (Permalink)

Roofer installing Roofing felt with heating and melting roll of bitumen roll by torch on flame Roofer installing roofing felt in Winter Springs, FL

3 Tips on How To Prevent Commercial Flood Damage

Protecting your commercial building is a major priority, especially if you are a Winter Springs,FL, business owner. The location may be vulnerable to extreme weather and suffer from wind and flood damage, negatively impacting your business. While commercial building restoration services can help you bring the establishment back to its former condition, you can also stay proactive and find ways to reduce the destruction caused by a flood.

1. Modify the Building's Design

One of the most effective ways to stop flooding from entering the building is through design and construction. Certain building and landscaping features can direct the water flow away from the building or encourage elevation from the ground level. Even if the building is finished, you can make additions that can mitigate the impact of water, such as landscapes that prevent buildup or elevation away from flood-risk areas.

2. Perform Floodproofing

As you look for measures to decrease the possibility of flood damage, consider floodproofing several areas within the business. This practice involves evaluating potential weaknesses within the building and fixing them. Some of these measures include installing waterproof coating to the building's outer walls, patching and caulking foundation cracks and replacing window glass with impact-resistant alternatives. A sump pump in the basement can also keep the site dry.

3. Clear the Drain System

An important asset to preventing storm damage is the outdoor drain system. A flat or slightly sloped roof allows water to build up and weaken the structure of the building. A drain system, consisting of downspouts, gutters and other outside drains, redirects the accumulated water away from the location. Find and repair any damage done to these drains and clean them up regularly for leaves and debris to prevent clogs during stormy weather.
Your commercial establishment may be under the threat of flood damage, especially if it is located in a flood risk zone. Take the necessary steps to stop or control this damage and save your business.

3 Things To Do After a Pipe Breaks

10/15/2019 (Permalink)

A plumber fixing a pipe Plumber fixing a pipe in a

3 Things To Do After a Pipe Breaks

If your Oviedo,FL, home has experienced or is at risk for bursting pipes, you may be wondering about the appropriate cleanup steps to take. Fortunately, there are a few things you can do to get your home back in working order.

1. Turn Off the Water

One of the first steps to help prevent further water damage is to turn off the water to the affected area. Depending on the location of the pipe break, this may mean turning off water to a selected area such as a bathroom, or in extreme cases to the entire home. Doing so can protect against any additional flooding until a professional can assess the damage and take care of the repairs.

2. Contact a Restoration Professional

Because bursting pipes can be a complex problem, it's best to contact a plumbing professional as well as a water damage restoration service to conduct any repairs. They will not only be able to assess the problem and find the source of the original pipe break but also look for any related damages, make repairs, and in some cases offer mitigation steps for the future.

3. Repair or Replace the Pipe

You should also consider whether it's best to replace or fix broken pipe. Consider the material of the pipe, its age, its location in the home, and its function when making this decision. Depending on the situation, a replacement may be a better option than a simple repair. Your restoration professional should be able to make any recommendations about this process.
If you've experienced bursting pipes at your residence, one of the first things to do is turn off water to the broken pipe. You will also want to contact a local water damage restoration professional to help with repairs. These professionals can determine if a repair or replacement is the better solution for your pipe damage problems.