Caring for the HVAC in Your Commercial Buildings
For the care of your HVAC systems in your commercial buildings, engaging a professional HVAC company to do maintenance on your system every spring and fall will ensure that the heating and cooling of your property is running as efficiently as possible. Inspection and cleaning of the wiring and mechanisms of all your HVAC units will be completed, which requires the kind of training these professionals have. The experience and expertise of such a company is invaluable to any business owner since the comfort of all interiors and the energy efficiency of the buildings themselves is important to residents, tenants, and the owner alike.
Here are some things you can do yourself as a commercial business owner both monthly and seasonally to maintain and prolong the life and efficiency of all your units and systems in between professional maintenance visits:
- Use high efficiency, pleated air filters. These types of filters have an electrostatic charge that works like a magnet to attract particles, such as those that carry bacteria.
- Keep HVAC units free of grass, leaves, and pollen. Make sure landscaping companies don’t allow grass to shower on top of any exterior units on the grounds.
- Clear two feet of space around all outdoor heating and cooling units.
- Inspect refrigerant lines each month.
- Replace air filter at least every 90 days.
- In summer, turn off the water to the furnace humidifier.
- In fall, replace the humidifier filter and turn on the water.
- Replace your carbon monoxide detector battery.
- Ensure outdoor AC unit is on firm and level ground.
- Clean AC condensate drain with bleach/water mixture.
Have your professional maintenance company check all your ductwork to make sure it’s sealed properly when they come to tune-up your HVAC. For more energy savings, preprogram the thermostats in your building.
Here at SERVPRO of Huron and East Seneca, we care about you and your business. When it comes to caring for the HVAC system in your commercial building, we are here to help. Visit our website, or call us today at: (419) 443-1790. We offer our services to a wide area across the greater East Seneca areas, including Green Springs, Milan, Wakeman, and more!
Top Three Places to Check for Water Damage
Anywhere you use water on a regular basis in your home is a place that can sustain water damages. Doing regular inspections of areas in your home or business that are most likely to develop these damages due to leaks and spills will allow you to take care of issues before they can become serious.
Here are the top three areas to check regularly for water damage:
Your laundry room. With the large appliances that are found in your laundry room, you will also find those nooks and crannies that are not cleaned as often, since these appliances are not easy to move. A small leak behind your washing machine can go unnoticed for quite some time and create large issues down the road. Add to that little drip the humidity in the air, and you have a recipe for the establishment of a mold colony, causing the need for mold remediation. Enlist help, pull the washer and dryer out from the wall regularly, and make sure the areas behind them are clean, dry, and disinfected.
You bathroom. If you are like most people, your bathrooms are cleaned thoroughly at least once a week, and these times are great for checking for leaks and drips. Look in the least traveled spots, such as behind the toilet and under your sink. If there are any leaks in these places, they can be a danger until they are fully dry. You may want to invest in a dehumidifier, as well, to prevent mold growth.
Your kitchen. This room is often described as the most popular room in the house, where everyone tends to congregate, cooking and drinking beverages. Lots of liquids are used here! Keep an eye out for spills and clean them up immediately to ensure that they are not attracting mold spores and insects, and check under your sink regularly, to avoid damages. Underneath the sink and refrigerator are places that can be damaged by water without anyone noticing, so get out your flashlight and make sure you see every corner clearly. If you find any mold growth, you should begin mold removal treatment immediately.
In addition to these top three places, other areas that can experience water damage are basements and cellars, covered patios and decks, and closets.
The team at SERVPRO of Huron and East Seneca Counties is ready to help you with any water damage concerns or issues in your home or business in the greater Huron and Seneca areas, including Norwalk, Clyde, Bellevue, and more! Large-scale cleanups after flooding and fire are our specialties, and we are mold remediation experts, too. Call us at (419) 442 1790, or visit our website.
Preparing Your Home for Winter Storms in Ohio
Here at SERVPRO of Huron & East Seneca Counties, we advise area homeowners to prepare homes and property for the coming winter storm season. Extreme weather can lead to power outages and disruption of communications, while damaging personal and business property and belongings. People even lose their lives in winter weather. Auto accidents on icy or snowbound roads and fires from improper heating methods are some of the main ways these tragedies can happen, while flooding and large snow accumulations can cause travel to become extremely dangerous and even deadly. It’s important to be prepared for many different serious situations to occur during winter here in Ohio.
Here are some essential safety tips you can observe to get ready for the coming winter season:
- Trim bushes and trees. Remove dead trees and tall bushes and all broken branches from around your home. These can cause injury and damage the roof of your house if they fall during extreme weather involving wind, ice, or heavy snow accumulation.
- Clear clogged rain gutters. When snow melts, it needs to be able to flow down your rain gutters and away from your roofing. If there is dirt and debris left in your gutters from last spring, the water will pool and begin to back up, possibly damaging even interior wall spaces in your home, and this can even lead to mold growth, causing a need for mold removal on top of the storm damage. A rain gutter that is full of dirt can become heavy and can pull away from the building, creating another set of issues.
- Check chimney and heating equipment. Have your chimney inspected and cleaned after winter and again before it comes around again, to prevent chimney fires. Your HVAC system also needs to be inspected, and all ducts clear and ready for use. Change out all your filters in the system, as well. If any space heaters are to be used, make sure they are in great shape and that everyone in the house knows the proper way to use them and when. They should never be left on if there is no one in the room.
The team at SERVPRO of Huron and East Seneca Counties cares about your safety and the safety of your loved ones and your property, and we operate in the greater Tiffin and Sandusky areas, including Fremont, Willard, and many more cities in the area! We are experts in water damage restoration, as well as fire damage cleanup and restoration. You can call us any time at (419) 443 1790.
Tips for Environmentally Friendly Mold Cleaning
Commonly found in both homes and commercial buildings, mold growth can cause a lot of problems, including health issues if left untreated. It needs moisture to grow and thrives in damp conditions or in spaces that have poor circulation and high humidity. Bathrooms and showers are two places that can be attractive to mold colonies. The spores of mold can irritate the eyes, nose, and throat and create respiratory conditions, including asthma, in some individuals while long-term exposure can severely compromise human health.
Examine your home or business premises for mold growth. It may be obvious, but it can also go undetected in air-conditioning ducts and ceilings or other places that are often damp. If found, you can employ many mold remediation methods to get rid of it, but some of the more common ones contain toxic chemicals that are not friendly to the environment. There are some simple, cheap, and non-toxic methods that are not dangerous, however, and we will share them here with you.
If your affected area is small, such as the shower, you might want to go ahead and tackle it yourself. There are several DIY home remedies to kill mold that won’t harm the environment:
- Hydrogen Peroxide. Dilute ½ part hydrogen peroxide to 1 part water and wash moldy surface.
- Baking Soda and Vinegar. Dilute 1 part vinegar with 1 part water and mix in 2 parts of baking soda to 1 part of the vinegar solution, which will form a thick paste. Spread paste over the mold and let it dry, then scrub it off. Repeat if necessary.
- Environmentally-friendly dish soap and Borax. 1 squirt of dishwashing liquid and 1 teaspoon of borax to 1 quart of water. Sponge solution onto moldy surfaces, rinse and let air dry.
Profession Grade Green Cleaning Solvents
If your problem is more severe, a commercial mold cleaning solvent may need to be employed. There are environmentally friendly mold remediation cleaning agents available that are typically biodegradable, pH neutral, and contain no toxic or harsh chemicals or pesticides.
If you are searching for more information on our services on mold removal and cleaning, click here.
We are always ready to help with your mold remediation projects. Call us here at (419) 443 1790, or visit our website: SERVPRO of Huron and East Seneca Counties.
Coming Up with a Family Emergency Plan
Make sure your loved ones are safe and their basic needs are met by developing a family emergency plan to put into place in the event of a disaster by having a plan. It is easy to panic during an emergency, so being prepared can help to minimize that panic and enable you to help your family in a calm and safe manner.
An emergency plan should include a disaster supply kit and essential supplies, and they should be easily accessible in a place that is pre-arranged.
A disaster supply kit should include medical supplies, medications, non-perishable foods and water, batteries, blankets and clothing. When you are putting your kit together, make sure the items you include meet basic needs - don’t worry about luxury items. The basic necessities are food, water, clothing, and shelter, so focus on making sure your family has these items.
An emergency plan that is easy to follow is also a good idea. If your family includes older children or adults, you will want to make sure that they can remember what to do, so keep it as simple as you can, using places that are familiar if possible. In the event of a house fire, for example, direct your family to a safe meeting place that is close by, like a neighbor’s house, and for a large scale emergency, use a familiar building in the area such as a church or school, where the family can meet up.
Directives for each member will ensure that everyone knows what they are supposed to do during an emergency. Each family member can be assigned a partner to keep track of, for example, and someone can be in charge of carrying the emergency kit to the meeting place. Discuss it together and pick the best person for the job.
Create an emergency checklist and put it somewhere memorable. It should include emergency contacts such as addresses and phone numbers. Add important items to the list to take from the home, like spare car keys, vital records, and pets.
Natural disasters may knock out power, contaminate drinking water, or make it difficult for first responders to get to you. Have an emergency food supply, consisting of canned and non-perishable items, including bottled water. This is especially important for families that reside in areas prone to events such as blizzards, hurricanes, earthquakes and wildfires.
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Here at SERVPRO of Huron and East Seneca Counties, we care about you and your family. Be safe! (419) 441-1790.
Keeping Your Break Room Clean
The break room is a popular space, a place where the staff comes together to eat, visit, and relax during their lunch hours or mid-shift breaks. It’s the spot that will be used for the occasional potluck put together for holidays or staff birthdays, or perhaps a celebration of retirement or awards earned. Keeping this common area as clean and comfortable as possible is good for morale, and will play a part in the happy memories your employees will have of working for you.
When outfitting your break room and considering appliances and furniture, comfort should be the first word that comes to mind. This room needs to be the place your workers go to relax, so chairs and tables need to be large enough for a crossword puzzle game or to hold several trays of food during a potluck, and the chairs should be easy on the back and seat. Just as importantly, though, they should be constructed of materials that are easy to clean and disinfect and are able to stand heavy usage and the test of time.
The appliances chosen need to be user-friendly and placed so that anyone from the shortest to the tallest can use them conveniently, and they also should be simple to clean and maintain. No one likes to use a microwave that is covered with samples of the last week’s lunches inside!
A cleaning checklist should be available, and a team should be designated to care for this area of your business. You can get input from the whole team as to what should be done and when, and then everyone will be on the same page to keep your break room spic and span.
If water or fire damage happens, call a professional cleaning company to come in and get you back to normal. For heavy duty cleaning projects such as stripping and waxing floors or washing walls and ceilings, this type of company can be a great help, too.
The team at SERVPRO of Huron and East Seneca Counties is here to help with all your cleanup needs, large or small. Call us today at (419) 443 1790.
Top Three Places to Check for Mold
Mold is odorous, unsightly, and even dangerous to our health, and it can show up very quickly. Knowing where to look and what areas are most vulnerable can help keep you a step ahead of a mold issue.
Here are the top three areas to check regularly for mold growth in both home and business:
BATH AREA. Most bathrooms are cleaned thoroughly at least once a week, this is the perfect time to check for mold. Look in the least traveled areas, such as corners of the linen or storage closet, behind the toilet, under the sink. If there have been any leaks in these places in the past, these areas are in danger until they are fully dry. If you detect a brand new leak or drip, have it corrected immediately. You can invest in a dehumidifier for your bathroom, as well, and that can be a great tool in the fight against mold.
KITCHEN/BREAK AREA. The rooms of your home or business that are used for food prep are often as busy as the bathrooms, and water is a big part of that usage, of course. Keep an eye out for spills and leaks and clean them up immediately to ensure that they are not attracting mold spores, which are always in our air and cannot be removed.
The laundry room. This room in your home has nooks and crannies that are not cleaned as often since no one ever sees them. Add to that the humidity in the air and possible unseen leaks or drips, and you have elements present that will encourage the possible establishment of a mold colony. Enlist help to pull the washer and dryer out from the wall regularly and make sure the areas behind them are clean, dry, and disinfected.
Other areas to keep an eye on in your home and business: hall closets, garages, storage units, warehouses, and basement areas.
SERVPRO of Huron and East Seneca Counties is always here to help you with any issues related to mold and its remediation. Large-scale cleanups after flooding and fire are our specialties, as well. Call us at (419) 443 1790.
Roof Repair to Prevent Water Damage
We all look forward to summer, with its pool parties and vacations. But summer also brings with it some unpredictable weather at times, and a home or business owner will want to be ready for water, and possibly lots of it. Here are some things to keep in mind when it comes to the most vulnerable spot of your home or business: your roof!
Regular Maintenance: At least once a year, you should clean the cobwebs and dust from your ventilation and exhaust systems. Caulking around pipes and vents is always a good idea, and exposed metal will rust and deteriorate, so make sure those points get painted to protect them. Remove leaves, dirt, and debris from your gutters to avoid water damage from backed-up rainfall or melting snow and ice. Prevention is always a great idea!
Schedule Repairs Right Away: Don’t hesitate to call a professional immediately if you see curled or buckled shingles during your maintenance inspections. If shingles are missing, that’s something that will need to be repaired before storms hit. Putting these types of repairs off can be expensive in the long run, so don’t wait.
Attic/Crawl-space Inspection: Your attics and crawl-spaces can tell you a lot. If there is any developing issue with your roofing, one of the first places you will see water damage will be here. Look for discolorations and warping or buckling in the materials used, and if you see any signs of mold beginning or detect any musty odors, you will know that you may have some repairs that need to be done right away. Water stains in the attics and crawl-spaces might also be a sign that it’s time for a new roof.
UTILITY BILLS: As a home or business owner, you are always keeping an eye on your costs, and if you notice that your utility bills seem to be creeping up, it might not be higher prices. It could be that you are losing heat or cool air through a roof that needs attention. Enlist the help of a professional to see if that might be the case and to perform any necessary repairs.
Here at SERVPRO of Huron and East Seneca Counties, we have a lot of experience in the area of cleanups after water and fire damage. Mold remediation is also one of our specialties. Call us today at (419) 443 1790.
Fire Safety in the Office
Practicing fire safety in your business will save you time and money and keep the people you work with safe. Here are some tips that will help you:
- Have high-quality smoke detectors installed on or near the ceilings of your office in all areas where people gather to work and be sure to include storage areas, warehouses, and outlying buildings. Installing Carbon Monoxide alarms in the same areas is a wise choice, as well, since CO is an odorless and colorless gas produced by burning fuels and can be difficult to detect.
- Ensure that you have multipurpose fire extinguishers readily accessible in several areas of your property, and make sure your staff knows where they are and how they are properly used.
- Schedule HVAC unit inspections on a regular basis. Employ a professional for these types of specialized tasks.
- Create an escape plan for your staff, and take the necessary steps to ensure that everyone understands it and can follow the plan in case of fire. Post your evacuation plan in public areas so that both your staff and customers are aware of where to go in the event of a fire. Second story buildings should have an escape ladder, and post warnings near any elevators that they are not to be used in case of a fire.
- Contact your local fire department for tips and directions on the requirements for businesses in your area to promote fire safety. You can schedule an inspection by the Fire Marshall to ensure that you are compliant with all area rules.
- There are remote monitors available today that can alert you if there is a fire in your buildings while you are absent. They can be plugged into an electrical outlet easily and connected to your internet, and the downloaded app will send you updates and notifications.
- During repair or remodeling to your business property, make sure fire-resistant building materials are used whenever possible.
Call the team here at SERVPRO of Huron and East Seneca Counties for assistance with fire safety. We are always available for large-scale cleanups after fire and water damage in both residential and commercial properties, as well. Our phone number is (419) 443 1790. We’re here to help!
Keeping Your Home Stormproof Year Round
Inclement weather can happen any time of the year, whether it’s a summer tornado, fall hurricane, a winter snowstorm, or a heavy spring rain. You will want to make sure your home is stormproof all year
Here are some preventive tips that can help:
- REGULAR INSPECTIONS. Inspect your entire property every quarter, keeping the upcoming season in mind. The weakest spots in your home are the windows. Make sure your house has been equipped with highly-rated protective windows. Storm shutters are also extremely helpful as an additional layer of protection and security against high winds and airborne debris.
- SAFETY FOR LOVED ONES. Your loved ones need to know what to do in case of a storm. Have a plan of action and discuss it with those you care about. It’s vital to stay protected indoors, and if the weather gets extremely severe, such as with tornado or hurricane activity, you will want to retreat to the basement area or the most interior room of the house. Choose a space with no exterior windows.
- MIND YOUR ROOF. Another vulnerable point in your home is your roof. Use highly rated shingles that can withstand the harshest weather. Inspections of your attic can also tell you a lot about the condition of your roofing.
- OUTDOOR TIPS. When planting your garden and choosing garden furniture, keep storm seasons in mind. Maintain your trees by removing branches that are not strong; these can become dangerous when torn off and thrown around by high winds. Before ice storm season, make sure tree limbs are pruned back from all power lines. Get rid of rock and gravel landscaping as a strong wind can send these materials flying. A little extra work now can save time and money later. Be safe!
Here at SERVPRO of Huron and East Seneca Counties, we are always concerned about your safety. We are equipped to assist with cleanup after fire or water damage, and mold remediation is one of our specialties. Call us at (419) 443-1790 in the event of bad weather issues, or visit our website: SERVPRO of Huron and East Seneca Counties