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Did you know?

6/24/2019 (Permalink)

Residues (such as burning plastics or the soot from furnace disorders) form long chains of ionized smoke particles that assemble in corners or at junctions of walls and ceilings which are called smoke webs!

The picture is from a fire damage that our large loss division assisted with out of state. The building had 35,000 square feet that was affected, it took our team a few weeks to completely clean the facility. 

Does your business have a plan? Check out these tips:

Protect your people : Your employees are your most important business asset. These tips can help prevent them from being injured in a fire.

  • Fire Plans: Make sure your employees know what to do if there's a fire, including calling 911 immediately. Conduct a fire drill at least once a year to keep employees aware of your workplace fire safety protocol. 
  • Evacuation Plan: In larger buildings, post a fire evacuation plan in several spots around the workplace. Never include elevators in an evacuation plan; always use the stairs. 
  • First Aid: In case of fire injuries, your employees should be familiar with the location of the first-aid kit, which should be kept where possible hazards can occur most-such as in the kitchen.

How to Restore Damage When a Toilet Floods Two Floors

2/26/2019 (Permalink)

 

When a toilet floods in a commercial property, the resulting water damage may affect more than one floor. If water works its way down through building materials, it can lead to significant sewer damage that requires restoration. There are five steps you should take to clean up the damage and restore your property to sanitary condition.

1. Clear the Clog or Backup

Depending on whether the toilet is flooding due to a clog caused by inappropriate materials being flushed or a backed up sewer line, you may need to contact a plumber or sewage company. Until the problem is fixed, the leak may continue or become worse.

2. Remove Standing Water

Limit the severity of the leak between floors by eliminating all standing water near the flooded toilet. You will still need to determine the extent of the damage to building materials such as floors and ceilings. 

3. Consult Restoration Specialists

Commercial water and sewer damage restoration experts can help you determine which materials will need to be replaced. These experts can also help with cleanup and remediation.

4. Clean and Disinfect the Area

Toilets that flood tend to lead to a leak of Category Two or Category Three water. Category Two water or gray water may contain bacteria or chemicals but does not contain solid waste. Category Three or black water contains solid waste. Either type of leak calls for thorough cleaning and disinfection.

5. Dry the Affected Area

Take measures to dry the area affected by sewage damage as quickly as possible. This can help to prevent mold and other secondary damage from starting to develop.

When you experience sewer damage in a commercial property rely on the skills of professional plumbers and restoration experts. These specialists can resolve the problem quickly and completely, enabling the tenants of the building to get back to business.

Preparing Your Business for a Flood: 3 Tips

2/26/2019 (Permalink)

 

When flooding affects your business may be at risk. If flood waters are powerful enough, they can force their way into your building and cause damage to floors, walls and your inventory. However, if you know that a flood is imminent, there are a few ways you can protect your business and minimize the destruction that a natural disaster like this might cause.

1. Make Backup Copies of Important Data

If you know your building might suffer storm damage, it is important to make data backup a high priority. Shipping records, customer data and inventory records may not be retrievable if your computer system is damaged by water, so having multiple files of this information can save you time and money in the aftermath of the flood. Consider cloud storage for real-time data retrieval. 

2. Rent a Sump Pump 

If your building sits on low ground and your basement or crawl space is prone to flooding, then you may want to invest in a sump pump. This machine, which is often used by flood damage and restoration service technicians, drains away excess water from the area where it located. Portable and underwater pumps can reduce the amount of standing you might encounter after the flood. 

3. Do Not Hesitate To Act 

Flood damage can happen quickly, especially in the case of flash floods. If you suspect this might happen, evacuate your business quickly and ensure that customers and employees are safe. Heavy rains can cause this type of flood, so it is wise to be vigilant and watch your local weather to be aware of any watches or warnings. If you realize a flood is imminent, shut down vital systems and try to seal off doors and windows after the building is empty. 

When flooding impacts, you may be concerned about the best way to protect your business. However, knowing how to take action and prepare yourself for a flood can reduce the damage and give you peace of mind both before and after the event. 

What Happens to You Solar Panels During a Storm?

2/26/2019 (Permalink)

You shouldn’t have to worry about panel damage, no matter what the weather is like outside.

Storm of all sizes come through, during various parts of the year. Many of these storms cause little concern and do little, if any, damage to your home. This doesn’t mean you don’t worry about the possibility of weather doing harm to your home. For example, high winds, rain, and other conditions may beat upon the solar panels in your roof. It’s important to understand what these items can withstand. 

Hail Stones

Hail storm may be rare in your area, but when they hit, they can create problems for homeowners. You may be worried about panel damage when hail starts falling. However, you can have peace of mind knowing that these panels should be in good shape under these conditions. 

• The panels are made of tempered glass and a highly flexible material.
• The panels are built to withstand impact from rock, hail or other materials.
• Panels are usually only damaged from hail when stones hit the same spot repeatedly. 

Wind

This probably worries you more than hailstones, especially if you live in an area where hurricanes are common. While high winds can cause roof damage, they are much less likely to cause panel damage. This is because your solar panels are designed to withstand up to 140-mph winds. This means they can hold up against hurricanes and certainly other less potent storms. 

Snow and Rain

If you purchase a high-quality set of panels, they should last 25 years or more. They are well-equipped to do their jobs well in the middle of a rainstorm or a snowstorm. The glass portion of the panels has protection to ward off any negative effects from precipitation. 

When you purchased your solar panels, you may have been concerned that they would succumb to the elements. However, you shouldn’t have to worry about panel damage, no matter what the weather is like outside. For more 

Is Smoke Damage Covered By Insurance?

2/26/2019 (Permalink)

 

If your commercial building or one adjacent to yours recently sustained a fire, and you are left dealing with smoke-related damage, you may be worried about making a claim with your insurance company. Is smoke damage a covered loss? Read on to learn everything you need to know about smoke claims to put your mind at ease.

Soot Damage and Insurance

In most cases, damage from smoke will be covered by your commercial insurance policy. This is even the case if the fire occurred at a company right next to yours. However, there are some steps you need to take to properly file your claim and increase the chances of it being accepted. They are as follows:

  1. Contact your insurance company to report the smoke damage and file a claim.
  2. Assess your loss and prepare a smoke cleanup plan with the help of professionals.
  3. Record proof of any damage and repairs through photographs, receipts and other documents.
  4. Prepare for the insurance adjuster to arrive for surveying purposes.

Following the steps above will increase the chances of restoring your property as best as you can. Having a solid plan in place will also make it more likely that your insurance company will approve your claim.

Smoke Cleaning Assistance

As you can see above, creating an action plan for cleanup is one of the most important parts of this entire claims and restoration process. A reliable , fire damage restoration company should be able to arrive on an emergency basis, assess the situation and help you build a cleanup plan that will likely include reducing odors and eliminating smoke from your building.

Smoke damage isn’t always easy to deal with, and communication with your insurance provider can be even more frustrating. Following the steps above and knowing where to turn for cleanup help can make your business’s post-fire future more positive.

Under Construction: How To Prevent Water Damage

2/26/2019 (Permalink)

 

A building doesn’t have to be fully constructed to have water damage. Construction projects are often delayed by water piperepair and the subsequent damages a busted pipe causes. To keep your construction business in , as profitable as possible, you want to prevent the flooding you can and mitigate the rest quickly.

The Cost of Damage

Any delay during a project can cost you money. When you have to stop construction because of a broken pipe, there are several expenses involved:

  • Extra labor needed to conduct the repair and rebuild the damaged area
  • Mitigation charges from professional water remediation services
  • Additional materials needed to rebuild the damaged section

Non-monetary costs of the delay may include damage to your reputation and potentially impatient client response. Your insurance may cover some of the financial burden, but repairing the relationship with your client is your responsibility alone.

The Prevention of Damage

Timely water pipe repair is a great solution, but it’s even better to avoid flooding in the first place. Before construction begins, create a plan for careful on-site water management. Institute a drainage system, and test pumps and plumbing before major work begins. During construction, it’s easy to let your plan fall to the wayside, so hire people to make sure your team follows the guidelines you set forth. They should monitor piping systems and help keep the air pressure in the pipes under control. Finally, keep water mitigation specialists on speed dial to ensure that, if there is a problem, you can get it resolved before a large area of your site is flooded.

Preventing water at your construction site increases the chance that you may never have to worry about water pipe repair. By keeping water sources closely monitored and structuring drainage systems wisely, you are more likely to stay on schedule, and that helps you please your client.

Answering the Call

2/26/2019 (Permalink)

When Hurricane Harvey left his wake of destruction the Emergency Response Team from SERVPRO answered the call sending teams to . Taking supplies and equipment our teams went down to help the residents and were humbled by the generosity of a community that didn’t have any clue how they were going to recover financially, much less emotionally from the impact of the storm. Rescuees were evacuated by boats from their homes and neighborhoods, leaving everything behind, but the spirit of giving and resilience impacted the teams from Knoxville.

The long-standing relationship between SERVPRO and the insurance companies helped our teams make a big impact and quickly. The insurance adjusters were recommending people call SERVPRO because it was a name that they could trust. Our teams were able to start water mitigation quickly and come alongside homeowners and other countless volunteers to help these families begin to get some semblance of recovery started.

Imagine your home with six to eight feet of standing water with the rescue boat pulling up outside and telling you it was the last call. Our team was humbled time and time again meeting over a hundred different families that had met that fate and yet met our team with smiles on their faces. Unanimously our team was impacted, and have spoken so highly of these families since their return.

SERVPRO of Bethesda/Potomac are professionals at serving you. That is why we are here, and that is what we do.

Exploring the Science of Drying

2/26/2019 (Permalink)

Did you know, there is actually a science behind the process of drying? The knowledge of psychometrics is essential to restoring a water damage structure to its preloss condition. While your initial reaction may be to grab a few towels to mop up the mess and places a fan or two around the damage, professional service may be necessary. 

What exactly does “speed up Mother Nature” mean? A wet building can often dry naturally because the environment always seeks equilibrium. When materials are wet, moisture will naturally move to drier air at the surface of the material-but only if the air is, indeed drier. The only problem is, nature takes too long and secondary damages may occur while the building is drying out.

SERVPRO has been trained to use top-of-the-line equipment to help Mother Nature along, including equipment to help dry hardwood floors, tough-to-reach spaces inside walls, and much more. Your local SERVPRO Franchise Professionals also use state-of-the-art monitoring equipment and a proven scientific process to help speed the drying of your home or business.

SERVPRO is proud to utilize a newly developed tool SERVPRO DryBook.

The SERVPRO DryBook is a proprietary tool allowing us to capture and track the steps of restoration project according to industry best practices and standards. This ensures your restoration is done properly and efficiently. It also improves results and restores your property at a faster rate, getting you back in your home sooner.

3 Things You Should Know About Electronics Damaged by Fire

2/22/2019 (Permalink)

3 Things You Should Know About Electronics Damaged by Fire

Recovering items that have been damaged by a fire in your home and staring the fire cleanup process can be a difficult. However, many people are unsure how to handle electronic items that have been damaged. There are several tips that can make it easier to handle and clean damaged electronics.


      1. Don’t Use Damaged                      Electronics

After a fire, you may be tempted to test out your electronics to see what is damaged and what still works. However, using electronics that have been impacted by soot and smoke damage can actually cause more damage to the items, and could potentially cause a fire. Instead of plugging in or turning on damaged electronics, try to avoid moving them in order to prevent further damage from occurring.

     2. Damage Can Be Hidden

Some electronic items may have visible marks that indicate the item has been damaged. However, electronics can often appear as if they are undamaged if the majority of the damage has occurred within the electrical components. Electronics that have been damaged by smoke are susceptible to overheating, so in the fire cleanup process, it’s often best to not use an item if you are unsure whether or not it has been damaged.

     3. Act Quickly

It is often possible for electronics to be restored, but time matters when it comes to restoring electronics. The longer an electronic item has soot in it, the more damage that is likely to occur. However, it can be hard to restore these items without the proper equipment. it’s often important to move the items carefully or have the items professionally removed to ensure that soot throughout the home isn’t disturbed.

Knowing that electronic items that are damaged shouldn’t be used, understanding that damage is not always visible and knowing to act quickly to restore your electronics can make the fire cleanup process easier. However, if you need assistance with the cleanup process, it could be useful to contact fire damage restoration professionals.

SERVPRO of Bethesda Potomac can handle a fire loss from start to finish

2/22/2019 (Permalink)

SERVPRO  can handle any size fire loss from start to finish. We have an in house construction team that does top quality work all over Las Vegas. 

After a fire it is important to get the home or business cleaned up as much as possible. If there is standing water, it will need to be extracted and then the structure will need to be dried. 

After all of the water is removed, SERVPRO can begin the cleaning process. In many cases there will need to be air purification through the use of air scrubbers. SERVPRO has all of the necessary professional cleaning products to get the home or business clean and ready for repairs. 

If you have any questions, feel free to reach out to us at anytime.