3 Ways To Protect Your Building From Winter Storms
Flooded building due to a broken pipe in Dawsonville,GA
Winter storms in Dawsonville,GA, may seem like outdoor problems, but the freezing temperatures they bring can cause issues inside your commercial property as well. A burst pipe can flood the building, and pipes burst easily when they freeze. Fortunately, there are measures you can take to ensure that the pipes in your walls stay warm and intact, even during a winter storm.
1. Insulate Pipes
Most of the pipes in your building are inside the walls, which means they may be isolated from the warmth the rest of the building enjoys. Because of this, it is imperative that you insulate your pipes, particularly those that run along the outer perimeter of the building. A frozen pipe can occur in no time if it is not protected from external temperatures.
2. Drip Water
When water drips through the faucet into a sink, the water in the pipe must keep moving in order to supply it. This can keep your pipes from freezing. It may seem wasteful at first, but the payoff justifies the minor excess. If you don't want to return from your weekend to discover that a burst pipe has left hundreds of gallons of standing water in your building, it may be profitable to accept the lesser waste of strategically dripping faucets.
3. Set Thermostat
Knowing that no one is going to be in the building every night and weekend may tempt you to turn off the heating system while the building is empty. This is not a wise idea. By keeping your building at the same temperature overnight and at a minimum of 55 degrees Fahrenheit over the weekends, you can keep the pipes warmer and less likely to burst.
A burst pipe can cause just as much, if not more, damage to your building as a basement or roof flood can. While remediation experts can fix the problem, it's best to make the effort to prevent it in the first place.
When Does Secondary Damage Form?
Mold caused by water loss in a Cumming,GA home
When there's a flood in your Cumming, GA, home, what goes through your mind? You likely think about the damage that could be caused by the standing waters. Did you know that some of the damage you think of, such as black mold, may in fact be considered secondary damage? This secondary form of water damage isn't caused by the initial surge of water. Instead, it is usually formed when one of the following takes place:
- A leak is not properly repaired.
- The humidity is not controlled.
- The flooding is not addressed quickly.
Understanding when more damage may occur can help you and your residential water cleanup team create the best repair plan possible.
If you try to handle water damage repairs on your own, you may end up missing some important steps. This poorly planned cleanup could lead to unexpected problems down the road. For example, you may miss signs of a hidden leak. Even after you clean up the initial water damage, more liquid may be pooling inside your walls because you didn't fix the hidden problem. Forgetting to address high humidity could also lead to more damage after the flooding is addressed. High levels of humidity in your home could be enough to lead to black mold growth.
Not only do you have to know how to properly cleanup after a flood, but you have to make sure the repair process is started as quickly as possible after the standing water makes its way into your home. Dawdling at all can allow clean water to degrade and become contaminated. This increases your chances of having to deal with mold growth and other secondary issues.
Not all flooding is going to lead to secondary damage especially if you make sure to address the issues quickly and properly. Failing to take care of standing water can lead to extra problems, such as black mold growth.
The Steps of the Clean Water Mitigation Process
Commercial water damage in a Dawsonville, GA office
Finding out that you need water cleanup in your commercial building in Dawsonville, GA, is never fun. If you must require the services of water mitigation specialists, however, clean water remediation is usually the least problematic. Here are the steps you can expect the technicians to follow during pipe burst cleanup.
1. Initial Consultation
As soon as you call, the representative on the other end of the line may ask questions designed to get to the root of the problem. This helps the company plan which equipment to bring to your building and can make the process flow more smoothly.
2. On-Site Assessment
The real plan is formed when technicians arrive at your property. They inspect the building and determine a course of action. They may also provide emergency services, such as shutting the water or power off to the area if you have not already done so.
3. Water Extraction
Using industrial pumps, the professionals remove water from the area. The sooner the pipe burst cleanup begins, the less likely you are to experience secondary damage, so it's imperative that as much water is removed as quickly as possible.
4. Surface Drying
To prevent mold, everything must be dried. Dehumidifiers tame the moisture in the air; fans and wet vacuums pull water out of fabrics and off surfaces.
5. Restoration Process
Even if the water damage is a result of a supply line breaking, that doesn't automatically mean the damage wasn't extensive. Walls and insulation, as well as ceiling tiles and flooring, may still have to be removed and discarded. The restoration experts then replace them and try to make sure wallpaper, paint or tiles match up before the job is done.
Even if your damage is a case of pipe burst cleanup, it's best to take care of it as soon as possible. By mitigating clean water damage quickly, you can avoid secondary damage and get back in your building.
Cleaning Out Your Closet… And Pantry… And Basement… And: What Can You Salvage After a Flood?
Flooded room after heavy rain in Dawsonville, GA
A flood has hit you, and now the long process of content cleaning begins. While you will likely want to keep everything and salvage as many memories as possible, the unfortunate reality is that flooding causes black water, which is toxic for both humans and pets. This does not mean that everything must go, but it does mean that you may have to part with some things that hold significant intrinsic value.
1. Nonporous Materials Can Likely Be Saved
As nonporous materials are things that cannot be penetrated by the water, these types of items can typically be salvaged. Some examples of nonporous materials are solid plastics, ceramics, metal, and glass, meaning that most dishes and even jewelry can be saved; however, all will have to be extensively disinfected.
2. Porous Materials Likely Can’t Be Saved
Unfortunately, as porous materials can easily be penetrated, these types of items likely can’t be saved. Some examples of porous materials are paper, wood, carpeting, drywall, insulation, and laminate, meaning that any photographs, draperies, flooring, and drywall that has been exposed to water should be removed because no amount of content cleaning will eliminate all the contaminants.
3. Seek Assistance from Professionals
It is understandable to be overwhelmed in this process. Flooding is invasive and destructive by definition, and no amount of preparation can prepare you for the emotional turmoil of a damaged home. Fortunately, you don’t have to make the decisions of what’s salvageable and not on your own because there are likely several restoration specialists in Dawsonville, GA, who have the expertise to make that decision for you.
Content cleaning can be an exhausting process because it stresses you not only physically but emotionally; however, if you can go at the cleanup process systematically dividing items between porous and nonporous materials, you may find the process a little easier.
Do Air Purifiers Remove Mold?
Mold damage behind kitchen cabinets in Cumming, GA
Do Air Purifiers Remove Mold?
Mold infamously reproduces by traveling through the air and finding a damp area to grow and spread. It makes sense that air purifiers can prevent mold from spreading in your home, but do they really work? This informative article can give you a better idea concerning mold removal and whether air filtration can work for you.
What Air Purifiers Do
A purifier removes contaminants from the air, such as dust and pollen. This can be helpful for people with allergies or asthma. Luckily there are specific purifiers that can remove mold from the air. These machines have HEPA filters.
HEPA stands for High-Efficiency Particulate Air and is designed to trap airborne particles that are 0.3 microns or larger. This type of air filtration is recommended by most health agencies such as the EPA and the American Lung Association.
Why They Are Useful
Most mold spores span 1-30 microns, which means that the HEPA filter can remove the spores from the air. By using a purifier, you can prevent spores from spreading or contaminating other parts of your home in Cumming, GA. It can also protect you and your family members from inhaling any spores.
When Professional Help May Be Needed
You can prevent mold from spreading, but what happens when mold has already spread throughout your home? This might require the help of mold removal specialists. Here are some reasons you should consider doing more than just purchasing an air purifier:
- The mold may already be spreading
- Spores may be embedded in furniture and other porous objects
- Leaks or condensation may be a big issue in your home
If these problems are familiar to your house, then you should seek expert advice and help. Complete removal of all mold is important.
Air filtration can help prevent mold if you use a purifier that uses HEPA filters. Doing this can stop the spreading of airborne mold spores, but you might need professional help to remove past or current mold growth.
More Than Flames: Recovering From a Business Fire
Damage fire in a Dahlonega, GA home
When your business is affected by fire, your first thoughts will naturally turn to the safety of your employees and customers. Soon after that, the dread of potential damages may settle in. After all, the extent of fire damage goes far beyond what the actual flames touch; you'll also have to handle smoke and water damage. While waiting for fire fighters to arrive, remember these safety tips:
- Follow established evacuation protocol for the safety of all staff members.
- Avoid sources of electricity and watch your footing. These are two of the most likely sources of injury.
- Don't reenter the building.
Putting Out the Flames
Before they enter your building, firefighters will assess the situation to determine the best way to safely contain and subdue the fire. Most often, they'll use their fire hose and water to smother the flames and cool the area. After smothering the fire, chemical retardants may be used to prevent further chemical reactions, including new fires from electrical sparks.
Assessing Fire and Water Damages
After the fire has been put out, you'll find that firefighters have used a lot of water to put out the fire. Flooding and extensive damage from water could be problems. Unfortunately, your business property may be still dangerous. Lingering smoke and chemical fumes could be present. Reach out to your insurance company to discuss the involvement of fire restoration professionals. Before hauling anything out on your own, remember that water-logged items are heavy and hard to handle.
Resolving Odors and Smoke Residue
Finally, there may be smoke damage and odors that must be resolved. Those odors may have a variety of sources. Fire damage restoration professionals have the equipment and training necessary to restore your business to it's original condition. These services include removing the remains of soot from your carpets and smoke odors from your furnishings.
Avoid further damages and injuries following a fire by allowing professionals to handle fire damage and restoration. You'll have plenty of other things to focus on as you reach out to Dahlonega, GA, customers and vendors during this time.
Responsibilities of a Commercial Tenant During a Rental Flood
Flood damage in Dawsonville, GA
When a flood hits your rented business property in Dawsonville, GA, you may be wondering who is liable for the damage. It may depend on circumstances of local law and lease agreements, but it’s often like a residential lease. Knowing what coverage is offered to a tenant by renting and what’s covered by renter’s insurance teaches you your legal responsibilities if a flood happens.
Lease, Law and Understanding
In a traditional lease, the process of addressing damage is often by a standard procedure:
- A tenant pays lower amounts to occupy a property while the owner handles any damages to the property that are explicitly not the tenant’s fault.
- If there is an unsafe condition or damaged part of the property caused by a flood or other event, the tenant has an obligation to write the landlord about it.
- The landlord has an obligation to repair any reported problems in a timely manner.
Depending on state law and the language of a commercial lease, all repairs may fall on the tenant. It is advised to consult the original lease to see what any specified conditionals on flooding and other damage. Some states have laws or court rulings that establish the landlord’s responsibility regardless.
For Everything Not Covered, There’s Other Coverage
The landlord has no obligation to cover property inside the building. It is up to the commercial property’s occupant to obtain renter’s insurance to protect assets inside. As a standard, this insurance coverage offers protection against unintentional damage alongside vandalism and theft. Sometimes, flood damage is not included and offered as an additional service, but it is advised in regions prone to flooding.
Restoring the Building Once Coverage Is Figured Out
Renter’s insurance is used to restore and replace damaged business assets or the building. Restoration is typically accomplished by using a commercial damage restoration company. Working out the coverage with the property owner will speed the damage restoration process up to get your business’ location restored and functional quickly.
Is All Flood Water Dirty?
Damaged facility by a broken pipe in Cumming, GA
If you have dealt with any sort of flooding in your Cumming, GA, home, you may have heard the water damage cleanup crew talking about dirty water. Typically, the waters that fill a home fall into one of three categories:
As a homeowner, it can be beneficial for you to have some understanding of these different types of flood water. Learning what makes contaminated water contaminated can help you better assess emergency situations in your house.
The first category of flood water is often called clean. If the flood source is a broken supply line or leaky shower head, chances are the water does not have any contaminants in it. While any water can do damage to your home, anything from a clean source is easier to cleanup if addressed quickly because it does not already contain spores and bacteria.
The second category is contaminated water. Some professionals may refer to it as gray water. Floods that fit under this description contain bacteria and viruses. Often, this flooding comes from some type of appliance overflow. The water that seeps out of your dishwasher hose, for example, may have some bacteria already in it.
The third category is called black water. This is the most contaminated flooding that can affect your home. Sewage backup and outside water often falls into this category. This type may have feces, microbes and harsh chemicals in it.
Even if your flood starts off as clean, you need to address the water buildup as quickly as possible. Even clean water can start to degrade. As the water from your supply line runs through your walls and into your basement, it may pick up bacteria that turns it into category two water.
Ways to Prevent the Spread of Mold During Cleanup
When you have mold growing indoors, spores are more abundant leading to further spread of mold in your building.
By the time you discover mold, from seeing it or smelling it, you already have a big problem. Mold spores exist in the air all around you and are never fully gone. The problem is when spore populations are excessive and when they encounter a damp environment indoors, where they take hold and grow. Mold thrives anywhere with moisture and oxygen, including in Cumming, GA. Indoors, you often find mold on materials damaged from water, such as from a leaking roof or a broken pipe. It's critical for mold cleanup to begin as quickly as possible, even in the first 24 hours, to prevent the fast growth and development of additional colonies.
Since spores are so small, they easily find their way indoors flowing in your ventilation system and even hitching a ride on your clothing. With particles dispersing that easily, how can you avoid mold contamination in other parts of your building especially during cleanup procedures? Well professional mold remediation specialists minimize further contamination through two key practices.
1. Containment. Professionals help limit mold contamination by creating a containment area. Ventilation and fans are turned off and a negative air chamber is created using basic principles of airflow, where air moves from high pressure to low pressure areas. This in conjunction with physical barriers helps prevent the escape of spores from the contaminated area during mold cleanup.
2. Air Filtration. Mold spores are tiny, microscopic particles and exist naturally in the air. To prevent additional spreading of the spores from the mold contamination area, filters knowns as high-efficiency particulate absorber (HEPA) are used with all air scrubbers and vacuums. These filters trap the tiny particles and prevent the airborne distribution to other parts of your building.
When you have mold growing indoors, spores are more abundant leading to further spread of mold in your building. The process of mold cleanup is a serious task that should be done with deliberate care and consideration. Thankfully, professional mold remediation specialists use careful containment and filtration methods during removal of mold-infested materials, minimizing the spread of mold in your building. For more information, visit http://www.SERVPROforsythdawsoncounties.com/.
How To Properly Use a Fire Extinguisher: The PASS Method
Keeping these simple tips in mind will help to ensure that you are getting the most out of your fire extinguisher in an emergency.
Having a fire extinguisher in your home is never a bad idea, but it won’t be of much use if you don’t know how to properly operate it. When an emergency happens, seconds can mean the difference between a minor kitchen fire and total disaster. Thankfully, there are a few basic tips and one simple acronym that can help you and your family to easily remember the basics of using an extinguisher:
• Assess the size of the fire. Extinguishers are meant for smaller fires still in their infancy, known as the incipient stage. If the flames have grown taller than an average adult (5-6 feet), your extinguisher won’t help. Evacuate the home immediately and call 911.
• Check the available pressure. If the flames are still incipient, the next step is to check the pressure gauge on your fire extinguisher. A needle in the green means you’re good to go. If it falls anywhere outside of this acceptable range, abort and get your family out of the house.
• Position yourself appropriately. Learn and memorize the effective discharge range of your extinguisher ahead of time. Before you begin, position yourself as far away as possible while still ensuring that the discharge will reach the fire itself. Have an exit strategy in mind in the event that the flames are unable to be controlled.
• Utilize the proper technique by remembering the PASS method:
P – Pull the pin from the handle.
A – Aim the nozzle at the base of the fire.
S – Squeeze the trigger to initiate discharge.
S – Sweep from side to side while continuing to aim for the base until the fire is out or the extinguisher stop discharging.
Keeping these simple tips in mind will help to ensure that you are getting the most out of your fire extinguisher in an emergency. Once the flames are out, contact a professional cleanup and restoration specialist in Cumming, GA, that can help repair any fire damage and remove smoke odors from the home. For more information, visit http://www.SERVPROforsythdawsoncounties.com/.