How Water Damage Can Affect Your Business
Every business owner knows about risk; after all, starting a business is a risk in and of itself. Yet many business owners fail to consider the real possibility that they could be affected by disaster at any time, often when they least expect it. In fact, many commercial properties in the area have had water damages, which have negatively impacted businesses in several ways.
- Electronics can be destroyed. It’s no secret that water and electricity don’t mix, so it shouldn’t be a surprise that any affected electronics will likely be either faulty or unusable. Depending on your company’s reliance on technology, this can be an expensive blow to your operations. If you have important files, be sure to regularly back them up.
- Important documents can be ruined. Although most businesses have switched to digital records, we’ve found that many still have paper documents lying around the office. Unless you’ve already scanned these documents, water can cause documents to deteriorate and become effectively useless. Fortunately, our team has the ability to preserve wet documents, depending on the amount of damage.
- Mold can begin growing. Mold can be a major problem for any business. It can cause health issues, structural damage, and damage to your furniture and belongings. If water damage isn’t addressed quickly and thoroughly, it can encourage mold growth, which can occur in as quickly as 24-48 hours.
Water damage can do a number on your business, which is why it’s important you’re prepared if and when it occurs. If you do have water damage, you need to call professionals immediately. Our team at SERVPRO of West Concord is always available at 925-681-9093.
Tips to Prevent Mold in Your Commercial Business
Why should you worry about mold in your building? According to OSHA, some mold, over time, may cause structural damage to wood along with damage to furnishings and finishes. Use the following tips to help prevent mold growth in your business.
Take Care of Your HVAC System
Your HVAC system can quickly distribute mold spores throughout your building if there is a problem. Make sure your HVAC system receives regular inspections. Sometimes moisture condenses inside air ducts or leaks drip onto ducts from ceiling tiles, which can lead to mold growth inside the ducts. Make sure to keep the HVAC drip pans clean and unobstructed. Additionally, replace your filters as needed.
Clean out Trash Cans
While you might switch out the liners regularly, can you remember the last time you washed out the trash cans? It’s easy for bits of food and condensation to sneak beneath liners into the can, which is all mold needs to grow. Try washing out office wastebaskets about once a month to prevent mold growth.
Turn on the AC/Dehumidifier
Leaks aren’t the only way for moisture to accumulate in your business. High humidity levels can lead to moisture and mold as well. On hot days, fans can cool you off, but they don’t do much for humidity levels. Run your AC or a dehumidifier to cut down the humidity in the building.
Look for and Repair Leaks
Leaks from plumbing, windows, roofs, and more can lead to significant water damage in your business as well as an increased risk of mold growth. If you aren’t regularly inspecting your property, it’s easy for these leaks to o unchecked until they create a larger, more costly problem. Watch for telltale signs of a leak.
Disaster Recovery: Need to Know Facts for Small Business Owners
Natural disasters have an enormous impact on small businesses, especially start-ups and cash-only businesses. The livelihood of both the owner and employees are jeopardized, an a plan must be in place to protect all parties involved. The Federal Emergency Management Agency estimates that 40% of small businesses fail to re-open after a natural disaster. With preparation, you can greatly increase the chance of your business recovering.
An emergency plan should be formed when the business is formed. Insurance becomes a key component of this plan, requiring careful consideration of all assets and deciding on the best insurance policy. For example, will natural disaster or looting insurance be included or added on later? Use the following steps as a guide to develop a post-disaster plan to keep your business running after an emergency.
- Follow up with employees: Address their concerns, and note if they are able to find temporary work or aid in the recovery process.
- Develop a communication strategy: Delegate someone trusted to communicate with disaster relief services, suppliers, and financial institutions
- Keep your data safe: Have a back-up of your business' files in multiple locations. Consider cloud based services since the data is stored remotely and can be accessed from multiple devices.
- Seek a restoration expert: Restoration companies such as ours will come to your aid to listen to your concerns, minimize loss, fix damages, and find the best value out of your insurance coverage.
- File an insurance claim: Examine policy and make sure there are no gaps. Also ask the questions, "Are additional damages covered? What are my deductibles?"
- Disaster loan assistance: There are various government agencies and organizations that can help your business recover. Visit the U.S. Small Business Administration website to learn about their Disaster Loan Program to help fix property and restock supplies.
Preparation is vital to recovering from any disaster; no one is immune. With the right plan, your chance of re-opening will increase significantly. SERVPRO of West Concord is ready to answer your call and restore your small business back to new.
Getting Prepared for Bad Weather
Business owners control many things, but weather isn’t one of them. Be it a snow storm, heavy rain or flooding, sooner or later, bad weather is bound to cause an inevitable hiccup in your business. Are you ready? The time to prepare is not when the forecast predicts a hurricane. Check out these ways to prepare your business for bad weather in West Concord long before it shows up.
Create a Bad Weather Plan
Surprisingly, while business owners make a written plan for many things, weather isn’t always one of them. But bad weather can create a perfect storm of issues, from pipe burst issues to logistical problems. Before those worst cases scenarios become realities, come up with a plan for how to operate in bad weather. It should cover
- Who will communicate with employees in a weather crisis
- Evacuation or shelter
- What the overall business weather policy is
There are times when weather poses immediate danger. One example is if a snow storm leads to a fallen tree or debris that damages part of your facility. Having a plan for leaving the building is ideal for such scenarios. Outline the route employees should take to safety and have appropriate maps to ensure everyone knows how to get out. After your employees, protecting your building is the next priority. Invest in backup generators to keep critical devices running and safe while you’re out of the office for bad weather. If flooding is expected, gather sandbags for doors and windows and consider moving furniture and electrical equipment to higher levels to prevent water damage. Whether your business is devastated or merely derailed by a snow storm or other bad weather depends a lot on how well you prepare. Use these tips as a starting point for facing bad weather and storm damage with ease.
What is a Small Business Fire Safety Plan?
If a fire breaks out in your office, responding promptly and effectively can keep your employees safe and prevent damage to the premises and valuable equipment. As a business owner responsible for the safety of your employees, drawing up and sharing a fire safety pan with your team and your city fire protective service is essential.
As a general rule, a fire safety plan provides relevant information about a building’s layout, its fire protection systems and equipment, and its emergency evacuation procedures. If you don’t own the building, the owner should hopefully have a fire plan that you can review and adapt for your business. However, to ensure you’re following best practice, contact your local fire prevention department for a template or guidelines.
The plan should include floor plans that show evacuation routes from each floor, along with fire exits, places of refuge and external meeting points. An additional floor plan designed to aid the fire department should show fire protection systems, and include a description of the building, along with potential access issues for fire fighters. The plan should also specify how the fire alarm system operates and whether it communicates directly with your local fire service as well as the nature of fire protection equipment, such as extinguishers and sprinklers, and the location of standpipe and hose systems. There are normally additional requirements for tall buildings and industrial units.
An important element of your plan is an up-to-date list of your staff, contractors and visitors on site, enabling an audit in the event of a fire. This list can also indicate team members with specified fire safety responsibilities. To ensure all employees are aware of your fire safety plan and what to do if they discover a fire, make this part of on boarding, and carry out regular drills help ensure all your employees become familiar with evacuation routes.
Putting together a fire safety plan might feel like a chore, but there are no short cuts when it comes to safeguarding your people and your livelihood. A well- thought-out plan gives everyone peace of mind and helps the fire service do its job effectively.
What are Common Pieces of Equipment Used During Mold Remediation
There are a variety of tools and equipment that are often needed during mold removal and remediation. Common protective gear used during remediation can include:
- Goggles that protect the eyes
- Hair masks
- Disposable gloves and disposable shoe coverings
- Masks that filter out most mold spores
Why Does the Equipment Matter?
Mold spores aren’t visible to the naked eye, but they can still be hazardous. Protective gear helps to ensure the person involved in the mold remediation process remains safe. Wearing improper equipment and then moving the equipment to an area in your home that isn’t affected by mold can actually increase the spread of the spores. For this reason, disposable equipment is often used.
If you’re dealing with mold growth in your home or business call SERVPRO of West Concord! We’re available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. (925) 681-9093.
Is Your Business Prepared for Disaster?
Many businesses are not prepared to respond to a man-made or natural disaster. Statistics show that, of the businesses that close because of a disaster, at least one in four never reopens. Small businesses are particularly at risk because they may have all of their operations concentrated in one location that is damaged or destroyed. That is why disaster planning is a critical part of every business’ operational objectives.
SERVPRO of West Concord is an experienced specialist in the mitigation and restoration of commercial properties of all shapes and sizes. We have a long history of dealing with business interruptions and working expediently to get these businesses back up and operating quickly.
Water extraction, humidity control, emergency power, document drying, emergency lighting, electronics cleaning, textile cleaning, temporary power, temporary fencing are among the services that SERVPRO of West Concord can handle to help get a business under control and secured.
Being a leader in the commercial restoration industry requires a lot more than simply drying a building. It revolves around putting in place the right strategy for getting the business back up and running as quickly as possible. The longer a business is offline due to an emergency the more customers they stand to lose to competitors.
SERVPRO of West Concord provides an Emergency Response Profile (ERP) as a FREE service. This ERP is a concise and individual report that puts all the information in one place that a business needs in case of a disaster. Contact SERVPRO of West Concord to schedule for your free visit and report that places all the information you will need in one booklet, binder, or flash drive to help you get the help you need when you need it.
What to Consider When Choosing a Full Service Fire Damage Restoration Company
SERVPRO of West Concord provides each certified estimator with a kit that helps provide damage estimates during your homes initial inspection. This kit helps test fire and smoke residues on your home’s structure and contents to determine whether restoration through cleaning remains possible.
If you agree to allow SERVPRO to handle the fire restoration in your home, we work with your insurance adjuster to stay within your policy limits and keep you informed throughout the process. We can provide you with quality cleaning and restoration services that help limit any losses you might experience. If you have concerns about specific areas of your home or want special attention given to family heirlooms, make sure to let your on-site restoration supervisor know.
SERVPRO of West Concord technicians handle a variety of specialty fire restoration services that focus on electronics, art, collectibles, books, and other personal belongings. Even if we do not offer these services directly, we have a relationship with a sub-contractor who does. Full-service solutions you can count on while you direct your attention to keeping your family safe.
SERVPRO of West Concord provides quality fire damage solutions to customers throughout Concord and surrounding areas. Call today to begin work with a cleaning and restoration company that you can trust to deliver quality results. (925) 681-9093.
Most Commonly Used Drying Equipment with Water Damage Restoration
Commonly used equipment includes:
- Air Movers: Used to accelerate air flow and evaporation of moisture from materials for restorative drying.
- Dehumidifiers: Used to reduce moisture levels, accelerate the drying process in water restoration
- Floor Drying System: These are high-pressure air mover mats, used during water restoration to dry hardwood floors. This system draws evaporated moisture out of damages areas and creates a vacuum seal on mats to move air from the subfloor to the surface.
- Air Scrubbers: used for cleaning and controlling air quality in restorations.
- Hygrometers: Moisture meters used to detect or monitor moisture in most building materials.
- Submersible pumps: drains standing water from any surface - ideal for flooded basements, farm use, draining standing water from swimming pools, fountains, flooded basements, etc.
- Extractors: usually used for water extraction from carpet and hard surfaces.
A successfully water damage restoration always begins once the standing water has been removed - though it may not be visible in puddles. Nevertheless, there are specific methods used for each and every situation.
If Your Home Gets Caught in a Flood, Count on SERVPRO for Assistance
Flooding is a normal part of our lives, so cleaning up from water in our homes is a regular occurrence for residents and restoration services. Performing a water cleanup in West Concord takes much more than just a large Water-Vac and a push broom. SERVPRO of West Concord have to identify the category of water that floods a home to determine the cleaning method and what precautions they need to take to keep our technicians and the homeowners safe.
Category One is Clean Water. It does not contain waste products. Burst pipes, leaking faucets, and some failing appliances are the usual sources of clean water. Natural disasters can damage roofs and expose homes to rain and snow. This category presents minimal health risks during removal and requires no special requirements for cleanup. If the water flowed over the soil before entering the home, however, it is not considered clean water. As a caveat, if rainwater intruding through the attic soaks through insulation and items, it is not clean water.
Category Two is Gray Water. It is water that was used but does not contain human waste. This category includes water from an overflowing washer that drops detergent-filled water on the floor. An overflowing toilet with no solid waste also is included in this category. Gray water is not a vector for spreading disease, but people can become sick by touching it, drinking it, or walking through it without protective footwear. Carpet soaked in gray water needs thorough cleaning for restoration and furniture needs to be sprayed or wiped down with an anti-bacterial cleaner.
Category Three is Black Water. This unsanitary water often contains human waste and presents a health threat to anyone who comes in contact with it. SERVPRO technicians wear protective gear while removing it from each home. Before starting removal, our teams also spray the surfaces with anti-bacterial and anti-fungal cleaners to reduce the risk. They treat all floodwater as black water since it is impossible to know what it traveled through before it entered a home. Team leaders dispose of carpets soaked in Black Water and only recommend attempting to clean high-value rugs since technicians can lift them from the floor and soaked them in a biocide solution that kills all living organisms.
SERVPRO cannot emphasize enough the need for grappling with floods differently than from a water line leak. Safety first, and we are proud to help our neighbors. If you’re dealing with flooding don’t hesitate to give SERVPRO of West Concord a call. (925) 681- 9093