Checking Your Commercial Property For Mold
From heavy rainstorms and thunderstorms to extreme heat and unstable weather, you’ve come to expect it all during the summers. High temperatures paired with humid conditions will create an environment that is just right for mold to establish itself in your commercial property, too. Mold thrives in dark, moist, and unventilated places such as closets, warehouses, and office storage, and since the spores are always in the air looking for a place to land, it’s smart to check your commercial property routinely to see if a colony has established itself. It’s really the best way, and often the only way, to stay on top of a possible mold issue, and we here at SERVPRO of Huron and East Seneca Counties.
You will definitely want to take a look around a day or two after wet weather during the warmer months. Move machinery, furniture, and office equipment so you can see any of the places where the walls join the floor and in the corners. Check out the ceiling carefully, while you’re at it. This is a great time to schedule an upgrade of your interior lighting if that lighting is insufficient. Regular inspections can also keep you informed as to whether your roofing or walls have experienced any kind of damage that can result in leaks, which is another ideal spot for a mold colony to get started.
The best way to handle mold - or any damage related situations - is to use preventive measures in the first place. Here are a few ideas that we here at SERVPRO of Huron and East Seneca Counties recommend that can help:
- Keep all your workspaces well-ventilated
- Use a dehumidifier, especially during the more humid months
- Make sure exterior doors and windows are properly sealed
- Organize all stored items on shelves, using the floor and walls as little as possible
- Don’t store cardboard in storage areas - this can also attract spiders
- Remove any standing water immediately and dry the area as thoroughly as possible
- Trim back shrubs and plants near structures
- Keep your roofing in good condition
If you suspect that your home or business has developed a mold problem, SERVPRO of Huron/East Seneca Counties has all the skills and training necessary to take care of it, so give us a call. We are also experienced in cleanup after water damage and fire damage.
HVAC Maintenance For Your Business
When you own a commercial property, you know that regular maintenance is an important part of keeping your organization running the way it should. Equipment and machinery need to be cared for properly so that you don’t lose business, time, or money. With summer coming, an important maintenance aspect of your business is the interior environmental climate you provide for your staff and clientele, so proper HVAC maintenance is certainly going to be high on your list of maintenance to-dos, and here at SERVPRO of Huron and East Seneca Counties.
You may want to consider setting up a contract with a professional HVAC company if you own a large amount of square footage. The owner of a smaller business might be able to maintain their system themselves, while larger companies are probably going to need professional assistance maintaining their HVAC systems.
A professional that handles large-scale maintenance of this kind will have a predetermined schedule that will include tune-ups, clean-and-checks, and other services whose purpose will be to keep your HVAC system and units performing at their best.
Changing all the filters and humidifier pads on a regular basis is an important action that will prolong the life of your system, and your HVAC company will include that in your contract.
Test your natural gas heating system to see if carbon monoxide is being released into spaces in your building. This is a project that would be difficult for anyone without the necessary training. With the right equipment, a professional HVAC maintenance company can determine oxygen levels, carbon monoxide levels, and flue temperature, allowing your furnaces to be adjusted for optimum performance.
Before you engage a professional on a maintenance contract, consider both the costs and the benefits. Some companies will provide priority service calls at reduced rates for customers who have maintenance contracts, and if you choose this option you will have the peace of mind that comes from knowing there is an experienced team doing all those regular inspections and necessary maintenance on your behalf, while you get on with the business doing business.
Here at SERVPRO of Huron & East Seneca Counties, we are HVAC system experts, and we have all the experience necessary to keep your system functioning properly year-round. We are fire damage and water damage specialists, and we handle mold remediation and prevention, too.
Sources of Fire Damage To Avoid This Summer
During the summer, we barbecue and use our firepits, and we have bonfires (if you live in an area where such activities are approved.)
Many of us spend time cleaning out our garages or getting our landscaping done, and this creates trash that will need to be disposed of, which often entails a call to the city waste management department. The trash will then be waiting curbside or near our homes or businesses for pickup, sometimes for several days or even weeks.
Then there are those renovation and construction projects that get scheduled for summer, and these also create waste that can take time to remove.
One stray spark from a Fourth of July sparkler near a dry pile of wood from fencing or roofing can turn a fun night into a disaster, and a lack of good sense near a fire pit can change everything in a second. Here are a few tips to help you avoid fire damage this summer.
All of these scenarios are sources of fire damage to avoid this summer. Here are some ways to stay fire-safe:
- Make sure your family and other loved ones understand fire safety before they start roasting marshmallows or cooking burgers. Everyone should wear shoes around a barbecue or fire pit, and young children will always need assistance.
- Schedule trash pickup immediately to avoid large amounts of dry material from sitting in your yard.
- Remove dry, dead vegetation from around your home or business premises so that if a fire breaks out this material won’t provide more fuel.
- Make sure the person responsible for filling the propane tank and using the barbecue understands how to properly handle volatile fuel sources.
- Follow the laws of your city and county when it comes to the use of fire, and this includes fireworks. Many people ignore these regulations, but keep in mind that one stray spark on a roof can bring down a house and threaten an entire neighborhood.
If you do experience fire damage, the SERVPRO of Huron/East Seneca Counties team is here to help. We are experts in cleanups after fire or water damage, no matter how big or small, and we are also mold remediation specialists. Call us today for assistance.
Fire Prevention Tips This Summer
Summer is all about cookouts, and we can hardly wait! Those long, warm nights are wonderful to sit out in, looking at the stars, and enjoying your friends and loved ones. The days can be pretty warm, too, and our HVAC systems will be working harder than usual. We’ll be cutting the grass and taking care of our yards, and all of these items we have just mentioned have one thing in common: they can each be a fire hazard.
Here are a few tips that can help lower the likelihood of a summertime fire in your home or business.
- Caring for your HVAC. Dust is likely to settle on the electrical components of your HVAC unit during the dry weeks of summer, which causes tracking faults that can lead to fire. Running multiple units at the same time consistently over time can result in both overload and overheating, which are also opportunities for fires to start. Keeping your HVAC clean from dusty conditions is important so that you can prevent a fire.
- Servicing your lawnmower. Follow the manufacturer’s recommended maintenance and care schedule on your mowing equipment, and be sure to remove debris and grass clippings from the cutting units, mufflers, and engines on a routine basis. Never refuel your mower when it is overheated.
- Storing your gas properly. The risk from fire is heightened by high ambient temperatures and relief valves that open at pressures that are too low. Always store gas cylinders upright and always out of doors.
- Practicing safe grilling. If you keep a grill onsite at your business for company cookouts, make sure it is stored away from your buildings and away from overhanging branches. Be sure to maintain a safe zone of at least three feet around the grill, and regularly remove any grease or gas buildup from the grills and trays. Never leave your grill unattended under any circumstances, and keep an eye on small children while fires are burning.
- Auditing fire alarms. Fire prevention should always include auditing all your fire alarms and fire extinguishers. Be sure to replace any old or burned out batteries, or recharge your extinguishers regularly.
Here at SERVPRO of Huron/East Seneca Counties, we care about fire safety, and we care about you. If you have experienced damages from a fire, or from water or flooding, give us a call! We are experts in cleanups from all kinds of disasters, both large and small, and we are also mold remediation specialists.
Dealing With Water Damage In Your Attic
When you experience water damage in your attic, it can often go unnoticed. After all, no one goes up in their attic very often. If you DO have water damage and it isn’t addressed right away, it can cause even more damage to the areas below the attic, and mold can even become an issue, as well. The signs of water damage usually include water stains or musty odors in your home. It is vital for you to take proactive steps to assess all damage as soon as you notice it, in order to avoid expensive repairs and health effects that can come from a mold colony.
Begin by evaluating the damage. Where is the water coming from? Could it be a pipe that burst or a hole in your roof? Make sure to check your roof for leaks on a regular basis. The water damage in your attic can also be caused by a lack of ventilation; humidity can get trapped in the attic and cause condensation buildup - an ideal breeding ground for mold. Be sure to turn off all electrical items before touching anything, just to be safe.
Next, inspect your attic for mold and fix any leaks. Mold can grow in as little as 24 to 48 hours after an area gets wet and stays that way. In case of mold, be sure to take protective measures and wear personal protective equipment, such as gloves and a facial mask in case your mold situation has become one that could cause health issues.
If you discover that a mold colony has established itself in your attic and that it has grown way beyond your ability to handle it correctly, it’s best to contact the professionals. They will have the mold remediation skills necessary to get the situation under control as soon as possible. It is also advisable to contact a professional before attempting to fix any leaks unless you have the proper tools and skills to do so.
SERVPRO of Huron & East Seneca Counties is always ready to help and assist you with any water damage, fire damage, or mold infestation. We are experts at all cleanup projects both large and small, too.
How To Prevent Mold Damage In Your Commercial Building
Mold can be beneficial; cheese and medicines are made from mold, and it plays a necessary part in the natural world, too, by decomposing organic matter. However, it can be a dangerous organism when it establishes a colony in your commercial building. The spores spread easily through the air and once a colony has started it can never be completely eradicated. It can grow anywhere: on the carpet, paper, inside walls, and on food.
Here are three tips to help you in the prevention of mold damage in your commercial building:
- Handle Issues Immediately: Leaks and flooding aftermath need to be cleaned up and dried as soon as possible. Keep an eye open for stains on ceilings and walls so that you can identify any leaks that may be happening behind the scenes. Keep your rain gutters clean and in good repair to ensure water is properly diverted from the foundations and low-lying areas around your commercial building. Mold grows where it’s wet and can take over within 24-48 hours.
- Proper Workspace Ventilation: Make sure all work areas are properly ventilated. Any appliances or machinery that produce moisture need to be vented to the outdoors. Using a dehumidifier can be a solution, especially during the more humid months of the year; today’s energy-efficient materials can actually cause a building to hold moisture indoors.
- Mold-Resistant Products: When doing repairs or renovations, choose mold-resistant products, such as drywall or sheetrock. Many paints on the market today contain mold inhibitors, as well. These paints are especially good for use in bathrooms and other areas where the air stays moist most of the time.
In the event that a mold problem has developed in your commercial building, contact the team here at SERVPRO of Huron/East Seneca Counties for assistance. We are water damage, fire damage, and mold prevention experts.
Flood Damage Prevention Tips For Your Business
Damage from flooding can cause serious issues to your business, and you may experience everything from a weakening of the foundation of your building that causes structural damage or a mold infestation from all the damp areas left behind. Excess water easily creates mold and mildew in the right environment, which can become dangerous very quickly.
Here are some flood damage prevention tips for you to help ensure that you and your business are prepared in case flooding occurs.
Keep your gutters clean. Clogged gutters will also cause water to back up and drain down inside the walls of your building, causing issues in the interior. By keeping the gutters clean, it ensures that they will not overflow and cause the water to go where it should not be. You may need to call the professionals if your gutters are out of reach of an average ladder, or if you just don’t have time.
Direct your downspouts. Direct all downspouts to send water 5 to 10 feet away from the structure; you can install tiles below the flow that will direct the water and will prevent erosion.
Proper drainage. Make sure there is good drainage surrounding your business. It is definitely undesirable for rainwater to be standing in an area near the base of your establishment for any long periods of time. The yard or land surrounding your building should be properly sloped to ensure that flooding does not occur and affect your foundations.
Fix all water leaks. Check for any leaks both in and outside of your business, whether it is plumbing pipes, drainage, or appliances, and if you see those telltale signs of water damage, be sure to get any issues fixed right away. It is important to identify any leaks before they develop into a serious issue.
Roof Inspections. It is recommended that you inspect your roof at least once a year for leaks or missing shingles. Damaged shingles and deteriorating caulking will need to be handled as soon as possible, to avoid issues when heavy rains arrive.
If you experience serious flooding on your business premises, be sure to evacuate everyone from the building as quickly and safely as possible to higher ground and call the necessary authorities, and remember that the SERVPRO of Huron/East Seneca Counties team is here for you when it comes to handling water damage, fire damage, and mold remediation.
Scheduling Regular Cleaning And Maintenance
The appearance and condition of your physical property speak volumes about you as a business person. When a client comes to see you in your place of business, what they see first will determine their opinion of what you do. It is a wise business decision to establish routine cleaning and maintenance for your organization, including all offices, warehouses, and entryways.
For example, if your entries, walkways, and landscaping are well-kept and in good repair, your clientele will notice, and if the opposite is true, they will notice that, as well. Ensure that your waiting area, the first thing a customer will see when they step inside, is comfortable, cozy, and properly lit. The seating should be in the best shape possible, and it should not need to be cleaned from spots or spills. When your customer uses your public restroom, it should be a pleasant experience, as well. Your client will see all this and act accordingly. If you haven’t been paying enough attention to your property, you will probably pay a price through a loss of business. No smart business owner wants that.
When it comes to keeping your premises in top condition, the very best way to make sure it all gets done is by scheduling regular cleaning and maintenance. This way you can have peace of mind knowing that all your needs are being taken care of in a timely manner.
A professional cleaning and restoration company can sit down with you and create a schedule for a routine cleaning and maintenance schedule that will work just right for your business. They can come in and assess what needs to be done, and then get it done in your timeframe. No more concerns about the little things like light bulbs or dirty walkways, and if the carpet needs to be deep cleaned, they will schedule that with you and take care of it while you run your successful business.
Our SERVPRO of Huron/East Seneca Counties team is skilled and experienced in completing all your cleanup and maintenance projects, and we have the expertise necessary to get the job done and get it done right. We are experts in water and fire damage, and we handle mold remediation, too.
What To Expect From A Fire Damage Restoration Project
A home or commercial fire is extremely disruptive to your life and the cleanup can be a nightmare to deal with. Once the fire is put out and you know that everyone is safe, you will have to start considering all the property damage.
A fire creates corrosive byproducts when synthetic materials burn, and along with soot and smoke will cause serious damage to surfaces and furnishings. This damage will reach into areas that the fire did not actually burn, as well, so the fire damage restoration needs to begin right away.
Here’s what to expect from a fire damage restoration project:
- Assessment. Your restoration professionals will start by thoroughly assessing your property, noting all the damage. Water damage will be noted, as well.
- Cleanup. All damaged items, including furniture, appliances, machinery, and personal belongings, will be removed from the premises. Your technicians will help you to determine if objects can be saved; if so, they will be taken to an off-site facility for cleaning and restoration.
- Stabilization. A fire can cause significant damage to the structural integrity of your building, which will cause it to be unstable and unsafe. The professionals will secure your home or business by covering any gaps in your roofing and by boarding other areas to ensure the premises are stabilized.
- Water Damage. Your restoration specialists will remove the water that was used to put out the fire and dry any affected areas using specialized equipment to prevent mold growth and other related issues.
- Soot and Smoke. The technicians then remove tarnishing that is caused by soot and corrosive byproducts using powerful restoration industry cleaning products. Smoke odor removal will also be done at this stage using hydroxyl technology and ozone generators to remove the odors, for example.
- Disinfection. Once the major damage has been handled, your restoration technicians will completely clean and disinfect your entire premises. This will include all structural elements, furniture and appliances, and all other items covered debris or residue.
- Final Restoration. The last stage is the repair work that will be necessary to get your premises back to their pre-fire condition. This will include reconstruction of damaged structural elements, remodeling and painting, and installation of new drywall and flooring.
If your home or business experiences a fire, call us here at SERVPRO of Huron/East Seneca Counties right away. We are fire damage restoration professionals, and we are ready to help at a moment’s notice.
Why You Need To Act Quickly After Water Damage
Water damage to your home or business can be a devastating experience, and it can happen to anyone. Flooding can be caused by heavy rains, a sewer backup, appliance or sump pump malfunctions or broken pipelines. Knowing what to do beforehand and acting quickly will go a long way towards alleviating the panic and confusion that can often set in after this kind of disaster.
Today, we would like to share a few of the immediate steps you should take after water damage occurs to your property.
Safety is the first and foremost consideration for any homeowner. Take immediate steps to ensure that every person involved is safe from injury. You may be forced to leave the premises if the water damage is bad enough, so you’ll want to make sure right away that it’s also safe to return when you have to start dealing with the after-effects.
Here are a few important steps you should consider taking right away that will help you:
- Turn off all power. Unless it will require you to enter wet areas or stand in water to do so, make sure that there is no power running to flooded areas. Call an electrician if this cannot be done safely. An electric shock can be debilitating and even deadly.
- Wash all dinnerware, glassware, and flatware that may have been affected by dirty water to right away avoid catching, and spreading, sickness. Water that comes from rivers or creeks may not be as pure as you might think, while we all know what a broken sewer line will do. Any standing water that is contaminated will cause issues and can cause some really unpleasant odors that you may not be able to easily eradicate, so getting this water removed quickly will help to keep that from happening.
- Dry out your home or business premises as soon as possible. Your home will probably remain damp for some time, even if you have been successful in removing standing water—especially if you live in an area that is humid already. Portable fans and dehumidifiers will be a big help here.
If you need the help of a professional restoration company, call us here at SERVPRO of Huron/East Seneca Counties and we can be there right away to help you ensure that your home or business is safe and dry. We are proud to serve our friends and neighbors here in Huron and East Seneca Counties.