Recent Commercial Posts
How Do I Know If My Fire Sprinklers Are Working Properly?
It’s important to make sure that your fire sprinklers are in good working order before a fire occurs.
How Can I Tell If My Fire Sprinklers Are Operating Correctly?
Fire sprinklers are a great way to keep your building safe from fire and can help minimize the damage caused by fires. It’s important to make sure that your fire sprinklers are in good working order before a fire occurs. Regular maintenance and inspections of your Marion, NC, building's fire sprinklers will prevent damage or loss of life due to an unwanted or unexpected fire.
Fire sprinklers are a great way to help prevent fires.
Fire sprinklers are a great way to help prevent fires from spreading and causing extensive damage. They can also limit the amount of smoke that fills a structure during a fire, which makes cleanup easier.
When it comes to fire sprinkler systems, you have two main choices: fixed or portable. Each type has its own advantages based on your needs, but both will be able to stop smaller fires before they get out of control and cause major damage.
Fire sprinklers cannot completely contain a fire
Smoke detectors are a great way to detect fires, but they cannot completely stop or contain fires in your home. Fire sprinklers use water or foam to put out the flames and cool down hot spots. They also can limit the amount of smoke that fills a structure during a fire, which makes cleanup easier.
Fire sprinklers work by releasing water automatically when heat from an open flame reaches a certain temperature; this causes the sprinkler heads to open and release their contents onto the fire source. The amount of time it takes for this process depends on how quickly the sprinkler head opens and how soon after activation that water starts flowing out of it.
There are different types of fire sprinklers available depending on what type of space they're intended for (such as residential homes) so make sure you know which ones fit your needs best before installing them yourself!
Regular maintenance is crucial
It’s important to make sure that your fire sprinklers are in good working order before a fire occurs. As part of the inspection, check for any signs of damage and make sure that the system is functioning properly. If it isn't, replace or repair any parts needed to get it up and running again.
Fire sprinklers should be inspected annually by a qualified technician. They can fail without warning, which would leave you unprotected in the event of a fire. In fact, they are one of the best ways to help prevent fires from spreading and causing extensive damage—especially if you have an older home or building with wooden walls and ceilings (like many churches do).
When it comes to fire sprinklers, the best course of action is to get them checked out as soon as possible. If you don’t have a professional on staff who can do this, call a fire sprinkler company that offers their services. They can make sure everything is working properly so you don’t have any surprises when a fire starts up in your building! If your home or business in Marion, NC, suffers from fire and smoke damage, don’t hesitate and give our SERVPRO of Lake Lure Forest City team a call for all your fire damage cleanup and restoration needs!
How To Create a Solid Fire Preparation Plan
Your fire preparation plan must include simple evacuation routes.
Fire Preparation Plan
A fire in your building in Saluda, NC, requires swift action. You need a fire preparation plan so that you can evacuate your building quickly. A solid plan can also prevent excessive damage to the building itself.
A fundamental necessity for detecting problems and reducing fire damage is a reliable fire system. A good fire alarm and suppression system consists of a few key elements:
- Smoke detectors in or near every room
- Control panel that reports alerts to a central location
- Sprinkler system that activates when the temperature gets too high
A functional fire alarm system lets you know where smoke is located. According to fire restoration specialists, while a sprinkler system may cause water damage when it is triggered, this problem is relatively small compared to the havoc that an unchecked fire can wreak.
No matter where the fire is located or how big it is, you want to make sure you can get everyone out of the building in an efficient manner. Your fire preparation plan must include simple evacuation routes. Make a map of the quickest way to get out of the building from every location, ensuring that the route does not intersect with the path that firefighters will be used to put out the fire. Post the evacuation route in every hallway and beside every door.
In addition to alerts and pathways for escape, any disaster preparation plan needs a detailed list of what is expected of everyone involved. For example, who is in charge of making sure everyone is accounted for once you reach the designated safe space? Who is tasked with communicating with the emergency personnel if necessary? Make a checklist of what will need to be done in the event of a fire and who is responsible for each task.
Every business owner dreads the thought of a fire in his or her building, but it's still important to be prepared. The key factors in a solid fire preparation plan are minimizing damage and getting everyone to safety.
How Can SERVPRO Help With Your Insurance Claim?
SERVPRO's disaster mitigation crews can arrive at your property faster than any other service.
How Can SERVPRO Help With Your Insurance Claim?
Recovering from a fire, flood, or any other disaster at your commercial property in Spindale, NC, could be overwhelming, and navigating an insurance claim can add to your headaches. Fortunately, you can rely on claim services as part of the emergency response assistance SERVPRO offers.
You can count on the fastest possible response from professional teams who know how to prevent further damage to your place of business. SERVPRO's disaster mitigation crews can arrive at your property faster than any other service to prevent secondary damage from:
- Mold due to sitting water after extinguishing a fire or a plumbing-related flood
- Chemical contamination of the air due to burning synthetics
- Electrical fires due to water-soaked wiring
Immediate disaster response can prevent secondary damage to increase your insurance provider's likelihood of covering your losses.
A Full Range of Claim Services
Gathering everything your insurance provider needs to process your claim can be challenging, especially if you cannot access your property following a disaster. Fortunately, you can rely on SERVPRO's claim coordinators to inventory and photograph your losses, provide repair or replacement estimates, and communicate directly with claims adjusters to ensure the processing of your claim as quickly as possible.
Reliable and Trustworthy
You can count on a thorough and effective cleaning and restoration of your property by SERVPRO's urgent response teams. Your insurer can also expect a fair and accurate assessment of your losses from a team that works directly with adjusters to avoid unnecessary delays and inaccuracies when processing your claim. In addition, emergency mitigation efforts that focus on preventing further damage help you return to business as quickly as possible, and insurance companies avoid overspending on claims.
Business owners in Spindale, NC, who rely upon SERVPRO's urgent response and claim services following a disaster have the satisfaction of returning to businesses that look "Like it never even happened."
Tips for Dealing With a Partial Loss Business Fire
Fire damage in a building in Marion, NC.
Dealing With a Business Fire That Caused a Partial Loss
While property losses from fires in the U.S. fluctuate from year to year, the trend in recent years has been upward. In 2020, fires caused nearly $22 billion in property damage, an increase of nearly $8 billion from 2019. Not all of these fires caused complete and utter destruction; many were labeled as partial fire loss. This means that significant structures and objects remained, which brings up the need for a fire assessment team to come in and decide what can and cannot be saved.
The Process of Commercial Fire Restoration
Trained recovery technicians come to a site in Marion, NC, soon after the flames have been put out. Their job is to assess the damage and come up with an orderly and efficient plan to restore a business as though the fire never happened. At first, the team prioritizes safety and preventing additional damage to the facility and then moves on to the following steps:
- Debris removal
- Water damage cleanup
- Soot and smoke damage cleanup
- Content cleaning
- Cleaning and sanitizing
- Restoration of damaged structures
In a partial fire loss, technicians identify items that are good candidates for cleaning. This can save money, though not all items can be restored successfully.
The Process of Insurance Reimbursement
While the insurance process can seem complicated after a fire, there are ways to make things run more smoothly. Dealing with a full-service restoration contractor often speeds up the process and reduces expenses in the long run. A single contractor with a designated project manager can send an itemized list of services and expenses to the insurance adjuster. This provides clarity and simplicity and eliminates mistakes and questions.
Every commercial fire is a little bit different and dealing with a partial fire loss can be a challenging situation. Following an orderly and professional process is likely to get the best results.
4 Important Steps in the Mold Remediation Process
Water damage can lead to mold growth.
The Remediation Process
If your Columbus, NC, building has been water damaged, then it is not unlikely that you will also have some black mold growth. This fungus grows quickly in moist environments, forming colonies in as little as 24 hours. You can expect the following to take place during the remediation process.
1. Building Inspection
Before any work can be done, the mold remediation company will need to inspect the building. This will allow them to determine the extent of the damage and the locations of the mold growth. They will check for mold in both obvious places as well as more hidden areas.
2. Mold Containment
Before the mold can be removed, the area should be contained. This is often done with the use of tarps and negative air pressure. This keeps mold spores from moving throughout the rest of the building during remediation.
3. Mold Removal
Depending on the severity of the black mold growth, removal can be a lengthy process. During this stage, some building materials may need to be taken out as well. Drywall, insulation and carpeting along with other absorbent materials can soak up water, resulting in large amounts of mold growth. Antifungal treatments will be used to help prevent the mold from returning.
4. Cleanup and Restoration
After water damage, the building is likely not the only thing to be affected by mold. Furniture, paper documents and other items can become a source of mold growth as well. Mold cleanup can be done for many of your belongings. Carpets may need to be replaced during the restoration, and walls may need to be repainted.
While it may seem time-consuming, each step in the remediation process is necessary to return your building to a safe and pleasant environment. If not removed properly, black mold can return and spread throughout the building. A professional service can perform cleanup and repairs to both the building and affected belongings.
3 Alternatives to Sand Bags to Protect Your Business During a Flood
If your business suffers flood damage, give SERVPRO a call. Our team of flood damage experts will restore it efficiently.
3 Flood-Proofing Alternatives To Sand Bags For Your Business
For many years, sand bagging was the first line of defense against flooding. While this method may keep water out of your building for a short time, it requires some heavy labor and can also leave property owners with a big mess. A wet sand bag can hold pollutants and contaminants, which can pose hazards to humans and the environment. Fortunately, there are reliable alternatives that can be safer and more effective. If you own a business in Forest City, NC, consider the following choices for preparing your property for a flood.
1. Inflatable Flood Dams
An inflatable dam is filled with water and placed as a barrier around your building. These are especially useful because they can protect against high water levels. Set up is typically very fast and convenient. Unlike a sand bag, the dams are usually reusable and can be easily stored between uses. Variations in design can make it easy to find the right style to suit your needs.
2. Portable Flood Fencing
Portable flood fences can be installed around the perimeter of your property in relatively little time and can provide significant protection from flood damage. This temporary barrier shields against debris, as well as rising water. Some options include anchors, which can be helpful in a weather event with high winds. Flood fences can be reused multiple times and will need to be cleaned and dried before storing.
3. Plastic Poly Tube Flood Barriers
Plastic poly tubes are another helpful design that can offer effective flood protection. These tubes can be as long as 50 feet, and are usually filled with dirt or sand. Once filled, these barriers can be placed exactly where you need them to prevent water from entering your building.
These sand bag alternatives can provide a quick and convenient solution to help protect your business from flooding. If your property does sustain water damage, be sure to contact an emergency restoration service right away.
How To Find and Fix a Water Leak
A water leak can cost a building owner or business a lot of money over time.
How To Find and Fix a Water Leak
A water leak can cost a building owner or business a lot of money over time. If you notice a water bill increase, it may be due to a leak somewhere on the premises of a commercial structure. Here are a few ways to locate and stop a leak.
Check for Drips
Dripping is often one of the first indications of a leak. Look for signs of
- Damp walls or floors
- Droplets clinging to surfaces
- Dripping plumbing fixtures
- Water around the base of toilets or appliances
The sooner you identify the source of a water leak, the less damage may take place. A pipe break is likely to be more noticeable and result in immediate damage. Shut off the water supply and contact a plumber to fix a burst or leak.
Search for Stains
Leaks that have continued for some time will result in staining. Inspect ceilings and walls for any signs of discoloration. A leak will not go away on its own. If you see new signs of staining, a leak is probably present and should be fixed. Water damage restoration experts can mitigate primary and secondary damage.
Ask the Experts
If you cannot locate the source of a leak on your own, contact a plumber or leak detection specialist. These professionals can
- Test potential risk areas
- Troubleshoot low water pressure
- Use thermal imaging technology
Experts can minimize the extent of damage caused by a leak. It is advisable to seek assistance sooner rather than later.
It is important to locate and fix a water leak as soon as possible. An undetected leak can cost building or business owners a lot of money and result in water damage and an increased risk of mold growth. If you suspect that a leak is present but cannot locate the problem, contact a plumber or leak detection service located in Tryon, NC.
3 Ways Professionals Eradicate Smoke Damage
Smoke damage cleanup in Mill Spring, NC
Three Ways To Remove Smoke Damage
When you think of fire damage, you probably see flames consuming a property, tearing the structure down. However, there is also another large issue in these types of disasters: smoke damage. For this reason, smoke cleaning practices can be imperative in dealing with any fire-damaged property in Mill Spring, NC. Here are three ways professional restoration experts may tackle this issue.
1. They determine the most effective cleaning method. Different materials call for varied ways of cleaning. For light damage, dry cleaning is often best. For heavier damage, wet cleaning may be required. Although wet cleaning is typically the stronger method of cleaning, it can’t be used for all materials. For everything else, spray-and-wipe cleaning and foam cleaning help. Additionally, there is abrasive smoke cleaning, which involves strongly scrubbing, and immersion cleaning, which involves soaking items in solution.
2. They move damaged items. Moving contents to a smoke-free location can help eliminate odor, giving it a chance to air out in a fresh environment. It can also protect the items from further damage that could occur if they are left in a fire-destroyed building. Finally, it clears space so building restoration can happen quicker.
3. They improve air quality. Generally, the main issue with smoke odor damage is the low quality of air after a fire. The smoke lingers, creating an unpleasant smell. One way to combat this is to change the HVAC filter, but professionals often use an air filtration device, ozone machine, or thermal fogger to improve the air. One thing you shouldn’t do is turn on any ceiling fans, because their wiring could be ruined.
The above practices of smoke cleaning can help move the restoration process along, eliminating stress. Damage from fire doesn’t have to be debilitating if the correct steps are taken to restore a building’s contents. By relying on professionals to correctly clean and move objects and improve the air quality, you can be on your way toward recovery.
3 Ways Mold Sneaks Into Your Air Ducts
Mold in an air duct system.
How Mold Enters and Forms Inside Ventilation Systems
HVAC cleaning can be an intimidating process for business owners in Forest City, NC. However, if air ducts aren’t inspected often, they can accumulate mold and spread it throughout the building. In order to completely solve a mold problem, you may need to understand how mold enters and forms inside the ventilation system.
1. Using the Air Ventilation System Before Mold Removal
Since moisture builds up when there is no air circulation, it’s easy to assume that air vents help prevent mold from growing. However, if mold has already formed, you may expect a completely different outcome because mold can travel easiest when it dries out. If you switch the air vents on before a HVAC cleaning professional comes in, you may be helping the mold find a more suitable area inside the building to grow.
2. Dust Accumulation Inside Vents
How does mold form inside vents if the airflow pushes it around? While an air ventilation system isn’t running, dust can form inside the ducts. Conversely, mold may also settle on the dust in the vents along with any moisture that has been sucked in. Since dust is often an accumulation of small organic particles, it can become a perfect food source for mold in the vents. That’s why you should consider cleaning vents routinely to help prevent mold in the ducts.
3. Moisture Inside the Duct Work
When a building is humid and the air conditioning is turned on, it sucks the moisture out of each room and through the vents. Along with an entire air duct system, there are several nooks and cracks in which the moisture may tend to accumulate. Since mold prefers a good source of moisture, it may start growing in these cracks and eventually spread onto the outside of the vents.
If you are a property owner in Forest City, NC, you may wonder whether or not mold has invaded your air ducts. A professional HVAC cleaning service may help you find and eliminate mold from within your ventilation system.
3 Ways To Eliminate Flood Odors
A thermal fogger is used to eliminate odors.
Three Ways Commercial Restoration Services Can Eliminate Flood Odors
If your commercial property in Rutherfordton, NC, has recently flooded, undesirable odors may linger long after floodwaters are gone. Restoration experts can identify and eliminate the sources of these odors as part of the storm or water damage recovery process. These trained professionals can prevent or identify and mitigate mold growth and determine the full extent of sewage loss. Here are three ways commercial restoration services can eliminate flood odors.
1. Thoroughly cleaning or removing contaminated porous materials. Any porous materials that remain intact after flood cleanup may be sources of persistent odors. Whether carpets or other porous contents or affected building materials were not thoroughly cleaned or disinfected or mold has begun to develop, a certified restoration service can identify why odors continue to linger. These companies are equipped to perform air sampling and testing if necessary and check for any signs of mold growth.
2. Clean air ducts and HVAC systems. Air conditioning and heating systems circulate air and odors throughout a commercial property. A certified restoration service can clean ductwork, vents, and other system components to put a stop to the recurrence of undesirable odors.
3. Use clean-up treatments to eliminate odors. Certified restoration professionals use treatments such as ozone or hydroxyl machines, fogging, and filtration systems to get rid of every trace of odor on the premises. These methods can help to get rid of stubborn flood odors that persist even after other cleaning methods.
Whether restoration experts trace the source of the odor in your commercial property to incomplete cleanup of floodwater or to mold growth, a storm and water restoration service in Rutherfordton, NC, can help you get rid of the smell. If damaged materials are the culprit, you may be able to file an insurance claim for sewage loss and replace contents or materials that need to be removed to eliminate an odor.
Preventing Mold From Growing in Your Facility
Mold can grow anywhere
Mold spores exist in almost every environment, even in conditions not suitable for mold growth. However, once they find a source of moisture, it doesn't take long for them to take root in your Forest City, NC, facility. Rather than dealing with it after the fact, it's best to learn about mold prevention.
How Does Mold Grow?
Mold growth happens with just a few conditions:
- Food (surfaces containing cellulose, like wood or ceiling tile)
- A temperature between about 40 and 100 degrees Fahrenheit
If the first three conditions are present in your facility, it's easy to see that spores can find a suitable environment once moisture is introduced.
Common Sources of Moisture in Buildings
Mold prevention means finding the most common sources of moisture in your facility.
You may find water in your HVAC system drain pans. Drains can become corroded or plugged with dirt, causing them to overflow into ducts and surrounding areas.
Ceiling tiles are porous and can absorb moisture from a roof leak. Tiles are usually made of cellulose-containing materials that feed mold. Moisture can collect in tiles around vents and pipes, areas susceptible to dirt and water leaks.
Like ceiling tiles, carpet and drywall are porous surfaces that absorb moisture. If you have water damage, a commercial building restoration service can help you dry and replace materials as needed.
Paper left in humid or damp places can provide a food source for mold. Take care to store paper reams or files in places with low humidity. Avoid storing boxes of paper on basement or concrete floors. Moisture can travel through masonry and leave behind mold on its surface.
Watch for mold on electrical equipment, cable and fixtures. Warm, moist air can travel through gaps around outlets on exterior walls and ceiling-mounted light fixtures. If electrical conduit has been flooded, moisture can remain inside.
Keeping an eye on areas in your building that are susceptible to moisture is the key to mold prevention. A little maintenance can prevent damage in the long run.
Protect Against the Unexpected with Business Interruption Insurance
Business interruption is important no matter how size the company is
Protect Against the Unexpected with Business Interruption Insurance
As a savvy business owner in Marion, NC, you know how important it is to have commercial property insurance. While hopefully, you will have few or minimal claims, if a business fire or other major event happens, it may mean a devastating loss beyond your belongings. Being forced to temporarily close or relocate can add up, which is why business interruption is important no matter how size the company is.
What Does It Cover?
Also known as business income protection or profit protection, this coverage is often part of your main commercial policy. It provides funds to help cover the cost of lost income and other additional costs that incur due to a major loss. While every policy is different and will provide different levels of funding, the majority of business interruption policies will cover:
- Sales and revenue lost due to the fire.
- Evacuation or temporary relocation due to inaccessibility.
- Expenses incurred advertising a temporary move and work involved in making the move happen.
- Loan, rent and utility costs for the damaged property.
- Payroll expenses.
Types and Length of Coverage
In general, businesses often have two types of insurance: business owner policy and general liability policy. The first often covers the damage to equipment, inventory and property loss. The latter is the general policy that covers fire cleaning and restoration services and other related expenses when filing a claim. Whether it’s time to renew or get a new policy, business owners should sit down with their insurance agent and review exactly what will be covered. If an incident happens, it is best to be prepared instead of surprised by a lack of coverage. Another important factor to consider is how long it will provide coverage, which typically starts immediately after the claimed loss. In some cases, there may be a waiting period.
A business interruption can quickly add up to lost revenue and unexpected bills. Staying on top of insurance is key to getting back to normal operations.
Common Business Losses From Water Damage
Don't let water sideline your business.
A business in Marion, NC may suffer a number of losses after sustaining water damage, which can be caused by accidents or maintenance issues, or a combination of both of these factors. Damaged pipes can lead to flooding, or an improperly maintained fire sprinkler system can discharge water when no fire is present. Here are some common business losses associated with this type of issue.
1. Building Structure
Depending on the location of any destruction, the building structure itself may be affected. Walls or flooring may need to be torn out and replaced. A leaking roof can cause damage to the ceiling, and both the roof and ceiling may need to be repaired.
Demolition may also be required simply to access the source of the water. Any sort of activity of this type may result in additional expenses.
Leaking pipes in the walls or ceilings of your building can cause damage to business assets. These items may include essential equipment, furniture, or even inventory. Flooding is not even necessary to incur harm of business assets, as even small amounts of water can contribute to significant losses.
Damaged pipes can also lead to the malfunction or destruction of essential building systems. Your business will then need to repair or replace these systems, such as your fire sprinklers, electrical equipment, or plumbing components.
3. Business Revenue
While your business is preoccupied with repairing water damage, revenue opportunities are passing you by. Problems such as these divert both attention and funds from business development and marketing. It may be difficult to quantify lost business revenue, but it can still be quite significant.
Regardless of the causes of the problem or the extent of the water damage repairs required, business losses can range from minor to catastrophic. Whether damaged pipes resulted in a plumbing leak that was confined to a bathroom, or a broken water main let loose a flood of water through your entire operations center, every business must plan for the inevitable losses that will follow.
Situations That Warrant Protection Against Flood Damage
Flooding can cause major damage
You take good care of your commercial property in Lake Lure, NC so that weather and other problems don't damage your building. You properly insulate your pipes and you make sure that gutters are clean and your roof is in good condition. Certain events, however, can flood your building despite even the best preparations. When these situations occur, you may need to have flood insurance to cover the cost of recovery.
If a hurricane hits your area, it doesn't really matter whether your gutters are clean. The storm and the continual rainfall that probably follows may cause certain problems for your property:
• Standing, contaminated water, especially on lower levels
• Damaged equipment and furniture
• Weakened walls, floors or ceilings
Your building may flood and sustain water damage when storms arise. If you have flood insurance, you have a way to pay for remediation services, even if the damage turns out to be extensive.
Some storms don't cause damage at the time they occur but rather after their effects start to dissipate. When heavy snows start to melt, the runoff has to go somewhere. If there is too much of it or if it melts too quickly, it can flood your building. Your commercial insurance portfolio should contain policies that take this possibility into account.
Some disasters have little to do with the weather and more to do with the weakening of structures made by humans. Levees and dams are built to control the flow of water and keep it from overtaking an area. When such a structure breaks, the water it releases goes everywhere, including your commercial building. Documenting the event as well as the damage it causes can help your insurance adjuster determine how much your policy should cover.
If you live in an area that floods regularly, regional law may require you to have flood insurance. Even if you don't, however, it's a good idea to have extra coverage just in case you need it.