Protecting Your Business From Partial Fire Loss
Fire damage to commercial building in Tempe, AZ
Fire damage can be devastating to your commercial building. Even if the blaze was contained quickly and the damage appears minimal, restoration can be costly, putting your business at risk of bankruptcy. Certain steps must be taken to ensure your business is protected from fire loss.
Assessing the Damage
When a building and all of its contents have not been completely destroyed by fire, it is considered a partial loss. This is a term used by insurance companies to determine the proper protocol for working with the client to recover their business. The insurance company will assign their own adjuster to inspect the property, but the business owner should work with a number of other specialists, including:
- Contractors and structural engineers
- Plumbers and HVAC specialists
- Air quality inspectors
Remember that a fire is dangerous for more than its flames. Smoke damage, excessive heat, and mold and water damage can all ruin the integrity of the building and the contents within, so it is imperative to ensure you understand the full extent of the damage before moving forward with restoration.
Restoring Your Business After a Fire
Once the full extent of the partial fire loss has been determined, it is time to work with a qualified fire restoration service. These specialists in Tempe,AZ, have equipment designed specifically to restore walls, furniture, electronics, and other items in the business by eliminating odors and damage caused by smoke, water, and other elements.
Final Tips on Working with Your Insurance Company
After a partial fire loss, insurance companies are expected to restore your business to a uniform and consistent appearance. In other words, every effort should be made to get your business looking and feeling like it did before the fire. As such, pay close attention to your policy should disputes arise. Common challenges may include an unwillingness to pay for new flooring that matches undamaged areas, damage to outdoor landscaping, or air quality concerns. Following a few basic steps and ensuring a solid understanding of your insurance policy will help minimize the damage to your business, both physically and financially after a fire.
Keeping Your Commercial Building Dry During a Storm
Building envelope in Tempe,AZ
One of the best ways to minimize damage caused by water or black mold in your Tempe,AZ commercial space is to safeguard the building against leaks and other moisture problems before they occur. Regular maintenance of your building’s major defenses, while costly up front, will be more cost effective in the long run due to the expensive nature of repairing any type of damage. Proactively working to keep water out of your building during storms is one of the most efficient ways to protect your business.
Take Preventative Measures
The overall integrity of your commercial building should be defined by the sum of its parts. This is because weather and the elements, such as rain damage, can occur from a myriad of sources. A comprehensive effort to safeguard the space, known as a building envelope, ensures that equal attention and resources are invested into preventing water damage from all possible sources, including:
- Leaks from the roof, walls, windows, doors, or other areas in which water is able to enter the building
- Humidity and vapor that is not properly ventilated through the space
- Improper or inefficient drainage systems in and around the building
Maintain Your Systems
Rain damage is one of the most common causes of mold and other problems, and is also the most difficult for your building envelope to prevent. You can help the situation by installing and regularly maintaining a comprehensive drainage system. Drainage can also include surfaces and gutters that slope away from the building. Ensure all high risk areas such as windows and doors are protected by proper sealants, and consider installing overhangs and other screens that divert water away. Whenever in doubt, always consult an expert specializing in the prevention and cleanup process of rain damage. Proactive work to prevent water damage will help protect your business during a storm while potentially saving you a fortune in cleaning and repair costs.
Spores 101: An Introduction to Mold
Basement with mold
Owning commercial property in Tempe,AZ, can be very rewarding, but it's not without its challenges. Chief amongst them is the potential for mold. From mildew to black mold, here's an overview of every property manager's least favorite fungus.
What Is Mold?
Mold is a fungus that develops from spores. These itsy-bitsy spores travel through the air and set up shop on organic matter around your building, including the dead skin cells humans leave just about everywhere. The damper and warmer the area, the more enticing it is to mold, so it's commonly found in the following areas:
In short, any area of your building that has a moisture problem or has experienced water damage may be prone to mold growth.
What Are the Different Types of Mold?
All mold isn't created equal. Mildew, for example, is a very common type of mold that's commonly found in bathrooms. It takes the shape of small, black spores, and it's usually easy to clean up with a commercially available cleaner or a 2:1 mix of white vinegar and water.
Another type of mold that’s commonly found in commercial buildings is black mold. This is actually a catch-all term for a variety of different strains of mold, some of which will provoke a response in humans, some of which won't. All of them should be treated promptly by a mold cleanup company that has the expertise and equipment to rid your location of mold once and for all.
How Can I Tell If I Have Mold?
Visible mold usually looks like dark spots. Picture a spray of ink, for example, or a dusting of chocolate cookie crumbs.
You may smell mold before you can see it, however, given its affinity for out-of-the-way places. It's usually identified by an odor that can be described as musty, damp, or woodsy.
Knowledge is power when it comes to mildew and black mold. If you think you have mold growth at your commercial property, the smartest course of action is often to contact a professional mold remediation company that can return your building to normal as soon and as safely as possible.
How To Remove Smoke Odor From Your Home
Whether you’ve experience a small home fire, had a smoky fireplace, or another issue that caused your home to endure smoke damage in Tempe,AZ, effective smoke cleaning can be very difficult to fully remove the smell and get your home back to the way it was, “Like it never even happened”. It often requires using advanced techniques or equipment that many fire remediation companies have.
Air Filtration Devices
The first thing that can be done for smoke cleaning is to use an air filtration device to completely filter all the air in your home and make it safe to breathe again. Some filter options include:
- True HEPA Filter: High Efficiency Particulate Arresting is the highest quality air filter available and is certified to remove 99.97% of all particles down to 0.3 microns in size.
- Activated Carbon Filter: Often used along with a HEPA filter, this is most useful in removing gases, chemicals, and Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs).
- Ionizer: Using electricity, an ionizer emits negative ions which causes airborne particles to collect into the air filter or onto the floor or walls. This can reduce allergens in the air to as small as 0.1 microns.
Ozone machines can be plugged in anywhere and release ozone into the air. The oxidation that occurs changes the chemical structure of smoke, other odors, and even bacteria, viruses, mold, and more. After a few hours, the smell is usually completely removed from the room.
Using this type of equipment, a deodorizer is heated and sprayed in fog form. Because of this delivery method, it is able to penetrate very small areas and is incredibly effective in eliminating even the most stubborn odors.
Individuals living in the home that have a compromised immune system, young children, and the elderly can be very sensitive to smoke. There are many options on the market to clean smoke smell from your home., but if you’re not ready to purchase new equipment for smoke cleaning, most fire restoration companies are well equipped. An expert can remove the smoke odor from your home, to the degree that you’ll forget it was ever even there.
How a Security Fence Can Protect Your Business After a Fire
Fire loss in a Tempe, AZ building
In the unfortunate event of a fire, you want to do everything you can to protect your business in Tempe,AZ, from further damage. Installing a security fence can help keep your building safe from various types of harm in the aftermath of a fire. Below are some key benefits of having protective fencing installed on your commercial building’s property.
Keeps Building and Property Clean
After a fire, some visitors might attempt to help out during the recovery process. While they may have good intentions, allowing them to step onto your property or into your building can create additional damage. Some ways people could cause further harm include:
- Bringing dirty water into building
- Spreading soot particles throughout property
- Bringing traces of smoke into building
These factors can aggravate the damage already caused by the fire and make the recovery process more difficult. Having a fence surrounding your property helps to prevent this behavior from occurring.
When you have a security fence preventing access to your building, it can thwart intruders and other unwanted visitors. Some people may see your damaged building as an indication that no one is inside and use that as an opportunity to vandalize the property or steal valuable items. Fencing also tells your employees that they aren’t yet permitted to enter the building in case they wish to check the condition of their personal belongings.
Helps Support Insurance Claim
If you plan to make an insurance claim for fire damage, your policy will likely require you to take reasonable measures to protect your property from additional damage. Having a protective fence installed is an effective way to prevent further harm, and it shows your insurance company that you’ve made an effort to keep your property safe.
When your commercial building is guarded by a security fence, you can be one step closer towards a full recovery. Be sure to have a fire restoration specialist assess your property to ensure that all damage is properly taken care of.
3 Ways To Maintain Your Home's Sump Pump
Your home sump pump can help prevent flooding in the basement of your home in Tempe, AZ
Ways You Can Maintain Your Home's Pump
Your home's sump pump can help to prevent flooding in the basement or crawlspace of your home in Tempe,AZ. However, without pump maintenance, your pump may not work effectively. Fortunately, there are various ways you can help to maintain your home's pump.
1. Visually Inspect the Pump
Inspecting your pump can allow you to notice potential issues that are often easy to fix, such as your pump being unplugged or leaks. It can be easy for your pump to become unplugged from an outlet, and an unplugged pump cannot divert water out of your crawlspace or basement. Plugging your pump back in is a simple, quick solution. An unnoticed leak can also cause water damage to your home, and in order to rectify the issue, you may find it useful to contact emergency restoration services. However, quickly noticing a leak and contacting a plumber to fix the issue can help to prevent water damage.
2. Test the Pump
Regularly testing your pump is often an important part of pump maintenance. However, many homeowners are unsure of how to test their home's sump pump. In order to see if your pump is working, you can pour a small amount of water into the sump pit. If your pump is working, water should be drained from the area; if your pump isn't working, the pump may not turn on and remove the water.
3. Invest in Backup Supplies
Pumps that use batteries should have their batteries replaced once a year, though in some cases, you may need to replace the battery to your pump more frequently. It's helpful to have a battery ready in case of an emergency. Additionally, you might want to consider having a backup pump. During storms with heavy rain, a backup pump can be useful if there is a power outage or if your pump struggles to handle a large amount of water.
Knowing how to keep your sump pump working optimally can help to protect your home from flood damage. Inspecting the pump, performing regular tests and investing in backup supplies can help to ensure your pump can help to prevent flooding in your home.
Three Reasons To Repair Water Damage Quickly
Removing water from a large building
3 Reasons to Schedule Water Clean Up and Repair the Damage
Water damage can be disastrous, and if a flood occurs at a commercial building in Tempe,AZ, it is very important to repair the damage as quickly as possible. Here are three reasons why it is imperative to schedule water clean up and repair the damage soon after a flood.
1. Every Moment Counts
When a flood occurs, act right away to salvage items and prevent further damage to a building. If a flood is caused by a broken pipe in an office, for instance, turning off the water supply immediately can be a great step to take. It may also be beneficial to quickly call professionals who handle water clean up and restoration services. The longer that flood water remains in a commercial building, the higher the chances are for mold and/or secondary damage to develop. Swiftly repairing the broken pipe (or the cause of the flood) and removing the water can prevent additional problems at the property.
2. Keep Costs Down by Acting Quickly
Water damage can create a costly situation at a commercial structure. If the damage has occurred at an office, these costs could quickly add up because employees may not be able to access the building until renovations are complete. This could mean a loss in revenue for a business owner, and this is another reason why it may be crucial to handle the damage at once.
3. Inspect the Building To Prevent Future Damage
Soon after a flood, whether it is caused by a natural disaster, a broken pipe, or due to some other reason, schedule an inspection of the entire building. There may be areas of the structure that need significant repairs to help prevent future water damage. If a flood occurs once, it could happen again. Inspecting the building with professionals may help avoid another disaster.
Dealing with a flood and water clean up promptly is critical. Doing so may help repair and restore the commercial building quickly “Like it never even happened.”
How to Save Water Damaged Items
Drying up affected area in a Tempe, AZ home
Tips to Help Save Your Property from Water Damage
Whether it’s from a pipe, a leaky roof or a flood, water in home environments can be difficult to deal with. Not only can the structure of your house be affected, but your belongings may be as well. If you don’t handle these items properly, you could make matters worse. If you have water damage in your Tempe,AZ, home, using the following steps may help save your property.
1. Clean and Sanitize
If the water has come from a broken pipe, then you may not be too concerned about sanitizing your items, since this water will generally be clean. However, in cases of floods or storms, this is a very important step. Black water from a flood carries many contaminants with it, including harmful bacteria and sewage waste. Because coming into contact with this water can be hazardous, it is a good idea to hire a professional service to remove it from your home.
2. Wash Clothing and Soft Objects
For smaller items such as clothing or stuffed toys, a run through the washing machine and dryer may return them to their previous condition. Do not allow them to sit or you risk a fungal growth, as porous objects easily hold mold spores and moisture. If you have products that cannot be put in the wash, dry cleaning is an option as well. This process uses a chemical solvent to clean materials.
3. Allow Wet Items to Dry
Once your items are cleaned, they should be allowed to dry thoroughly. If all of the water in your home has not yet been removed, you should consider relocating your belongings. If your home has multiple levels, you may want to move wet items to a higher floor. For those where sun damage is not a concern, bringing them outside may help them to dry more quickly.
No matter where the water in your home has come from, you should act quickly to prevent long-term damage to both the building and your belongings. A water restoration company can perform necessary repairs as well as cleanup.
3 Ways to Prevent Mold Growth in Your Bathroom
Clean your bathroom at least once a week
3 Ways to Prevent Mold Growth in Your Bathroom
Bathrooms are one of the most common places for mold to grow in the home in Tempe,AZ. Bathroom mildew usually grows due to the intense amount of humidity that most bathrooms let off. It is nearly impossible to prevent moisture from entering most bathrooms, but there are some ways to help prevent mold from growing in these environments.
1. Use a Swamp Cooler
Mold loves moisture, and bathrooms are typically the moistest room in a home. Swamp coolers can help you control a humidity problem to prevent any mildew from growing. They help dry out the air in your bathroom to prevent mold or mildew from growing. That being said, they are not completely effective, so other measures should be taken. Keeping your bathroom clean and doing a regular check for mold or mildew growth can help prevent expensive and costly issues.
2. Wash Your Shower Curtain
Shower curtains are one of the most prominent places for mold to grow. Often times people do not think about washing their shower curtains. When you shower, moisture gets on the curtain and can often stay there for hours. Pulling the curtain out straight can help the moisture dry faster. Also make sure to wash towels, washcloths and bath mats on a regular basis as these can also attract mold. If you notice any mold on your towels or mats, be sure to call a mold remediation specialist right away.
3. Keep it Clean
The bathroom is one of the most dreaded places to clean but is also one of the most necessary. Because of the excessive moisture in bathrooms, mildew and mold can run ramped in these areas. Using a squeegee after each shower is a pain but very effective in preventive bathroom mildew. Use the proper cleaning supplies each time and try to clean your bathroom at least once a week.
Cleaning your bathroom properly can go a long way but may not always prevent bathroom mildew. It is important to check your bathroom for mildew or mold on a regular basis, and you should call a professional if you notice any signs of mold growth.
4 Tips for Removing Cigarette Smoke From Your Home
An air purifier is a useful tool for getting rid of bad odors in your home for good
Four Tips to Help You Start the Home Deodorization Process
Whether you are a smoker yourself or you’ve recently moved into a home that has a lingering smoke smell, you surely don’t want to smell smoke in your home in Tempe,AZ. Since odors from cigarette smoke penetrate surfaces in your home and is naturally resilient to cleaning, you will need to use a variety of methods to completely remove the smell. Here are four tips to help you start the home deodorization process.
1. Lay Out Natural Deodorizers
While home remedies might not be effective at tackling an extensive smoke odor problem, they can help remove the smell of smoke over time or after smoke has just entered your home. Here a few natural deodorizers you can try:
• Baking soda
• Coffee grounds
• Vanilla Extract
2. Thoroughly Clean All Surfaces
Since smoke can quickly penetrate your walls, carpets, furniture, and clothes, you will need to thoroughly clean every surface of your home as part of the home deodorization process. This includes cleaning all laundry and linens, steam cleaning and deodorizing your carpet, and cleaning hard surfaces with vinegar and water.
3. Let Odorous Air Exit Your Home
While opening a window won’t make the smell of smoke go away on its own, it will help let out some of the odorous air. You should keep windows open throughout your home to promote circulation while you’re cleaning.
4. Use an Air Purifier
An air purifier is a useful tool for getting rid of bad odors in your home for good. These purifiers work by using a filter to remove odorous particles from the air, clean them, and then releasing the clean air back into the room.
While these home deodorization methods can be very useful in ridding cigarette smoke from your home, they won’t work for everyone. If nothing you do seems to eliminate the smell, get the help of smoke cleaning specialists to make your home smell fresh and clean.