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First Steps to Take in an Emergency

2/26/2021 (Permalink)

Family stands outside house fire When the unforeseen happens, it's good to have a plan in place.

Flooding from a burst pipe. A grease or electrical fire. A natural disaster. 

You hope it never happens to you, but what if it does? What do you do first, and when does your neighborhood SERVPRO team come into play?

First And Foremost

Do not panic. Stay calm and remember that safety is the most critical factor in these situations. Belongings can be replaced, but people cannot. 

Tell everyone to calmly evacuate the premises to a safe distance, obtaining only essential belongings, and only if safely accessible upon evacuation. Once outside, make sure everyone on site is safe and accounted for. 

If a fire or a collapsing structure, or if someone on-site needs urgent medical attention, make 9-1-1 your first call. After that, call your insurance agent.

In the event of a flood, try and move more important belongings to higher places or even higher stories of a multi-story home or commercial property. However, if floodwaters are moving fast enough, they can take you off your feet, so assess the severity of the flood to determine how urgently you need to evacuate.

What To Document

Write down any and every detail you can recall, and remember that no detail is too insignificant. Note anything that seems damaged or out of order. Any further information pertaining to a potential cause is essential.

And once it is safe to do so, don’t forget to capture visuals for your insurance agent. They will usually advise you on when is the right time to do this. Take photos, or even shoot video, on your smartphone if you can.

Contacting SERVPRO

After ensuring everyone is safely evacuated and contacting your insurance agent (and emergency services if a fire dictates it), call your local SERVPRO experts at (940) 514-8968. 

Our phones are manned 24/7, and we can advise on how to proceed, thanks to our free consultation policy. If it’s a small job you can handle yourself, that’s great! If not, there’s never been a job too tough for our team to tackle. 

Save our phone number, and remember that we’ve got your back!

What Can Cause a Toilet To Overflow in a Commercial Property?

2/25/2021 (Permalink)

Overflowing broken toilet A toilet overflow is a sign of serious problems in your sewage system.

Common Causes For A Toilet Overflow

Sewage cleaning can make a valuable difference in the performance of a building’s sewage system. A toilet overflow is a sign of serious problems in your sewage system. If you find yourself having to sop up a flood from an overflowing toilet, it may be due to:

  • A clogged waste pipe in the sewage system
  • Roots obstructing the waste pipe
  • A full septic system

Here are some common causes for a toilet that overflows without being flushed in Ponder, TX.

Clogged Drainage Pipe
One cause for a toilet overflow is a clogged pipe. If this is the cause of your flooding toilet, the water is considered category 3, or highly unsanitary water. Use protective gear when handling this type of flood. A toilet that overflows without being flushed is an indicator that the drainage pipe is clogged. Clearing a clogged pipe is severe and often requires professional attention.

Full Septic System
A foul odor spreading through the building, slow drains, a backed-up toilet, and a lawn that is healthier than usual are common signs that your septic system needs to be serviced. Commercial septic systems can service 20 people a day and should be pumped at least once every three years. Contact a sewage cleaning service to pump your septic system if you notice any indicators that it is full. Immediate response upon noticing the signs of a full septic tank will prevent severe water damages.

Old Sewage Systems
Older sewage systems were often made with clay or concrete materials, making it easy for tree roots to penetrate and clog the drainage pipes. The newer mixture of plastic and concrete materials does not allow tree roots to penetrate. An outdated sewage system is likely to develop clogs from invasive tree roots. This requires a professional sewage company to remove the older plumbing materials and install new pipes.
SERVPRO is a preferred vendor for most insurance agencies and can handle your sewage cleaning needs. If your building has category 3 water damage from sewage, contact your local SERVPRO for cleaning and restoration services. Updating old sewage systems and maintaining them can help prevent loss from water damage.

Tell Me More: Water Damage Repair

2/22/2021 (Permalink)

Water damage restoration Homeowners attempt to control water damage from an unexpected leak.

If you’re dealing with water damage in your home or commercial property, it’s important to remember that immediate action is crucial. The sooner you act, the easier mitigating damage and restoring your property will be. 

Call your local SERVPRO team at (940) 566-2277 for 24/7 assistance in any water damage cases.

What exactly do we do? Allow us to explain.

The Process

When you call, you’ll be a specialist who will guide you through several questions that will help us address your water emergency faster and more efficiently. Like we said before, calling us as soon as you can upon identifying a water damage emergency is crucial to the restoration process.

We’ll arrive on-site with a team of Water Cleanup and Damage Restoration Technicians and Applied Structural Dying Technicians. The team will assess the situation to determine the extent of the damage and what steps are necessary to ensure a thorough, high-quality restoration of your home or commercial property. 

Next, we’ll bring in our powerful pumps and vacuums to remove hundreds or even thousands of gallons from your property, which helps prevent secondary water damage and mold growth. Then we’ll use specialized equipment to remove any remaining water before we begin drying and dehumidifying. 

Our experts use data like room measurements, inside temperature, and relative humidity to determine the proper number of air movers and dehumidifiers to dry your home or business. It’s a science, and one we know intimately.

We thoroughly clean all of the restorable items and structures damaged by the water, using several techniques we’ve perfected over the years. Our professionals are masters in sanitizing treatments and deodorizing your property.

Last comes the restoration, or the stage in the process in which we restore your home or business to its pre-water damage condition. This might involve minor repairs like replacing drywall or installing new carpet or warranting major repairs or even reconstructing an entire room. Whatever the situation necessitates, we’ve seen it before.

Don’t Forget

You can always reference our Water Damage Emergency Tips Guide for more info on what to do in a crisis.

What Could A Water Leak Be Costing You?

2/16/2021 (Permalink)

wet carpet in an office due to a water leak Commercial water damage in Denton, TX

What Could A Water Leak Be Costing You?

While some leaks are very obvious and easy to discover, smaller leaks are often left undetected. Even when you're aware that there might be a problem, leaks behind walls, or in the ceilings or floors can be difficult to find. There are many ways a water leak in your building in Denton, TX, could be costing you money.

1. On Your Water Bill
The most obvious and direct way a water leak can cost you money is on your water bill. A slow dripping leak can waste between seven to ten gallons of water per day. Severe leaks can waste closer to ninety gallons per day. This all adds up to your water bill. By not addressing small leaks, you are wasting money. Take the time to fix leaks as you discover them. The cost of the repair will likely be less than the amount of money wasted by allowing it to continue to leak.

2. In Equipment Repairs or Upgrades
Leaks left unaddressed could lead to the need for pipe repairs and plumbing upgrades sooner than you would have needed them. A small leak can lead to a pipe break if allowed to go on long enough.

3. In Damages
Broken or leaky pipes can lead to damage to the structure of your building. Pipes are generally hidden behind walls or under floors. When a leak goes undetected, this allows time for the water to seep into the building materials. Water-soaked floors and walls can be susceptible to mold, often requiring extensive cleanup and repairs or rebuilding. Water damage specialists can help you recover from large leaks that cause major damage.
In the age of bills being automatically paid or deducted from bank accounts, it is still a good idea to review monthly charges for utility bills. A sudden spike in your water bill could be a clue that you have a water leak hidden somewhere. Consult a plumber to help locate the source of the leak and fix it as soon as possible to avoid wasting more money.

3 Ways To Find Mold Growth in Your Commercial Building

1/26/2021 (Permalink)

Wall covered with mold due to humidity Mold can grow in nearly any environment if there is moisture present.

Use The Following To Determine If This Fungus Is Present In Your Building

If you’ve recently had water damage in your commercial building, you may find a few additional problems afterward. Whether the damage was caused by leaky plumbing, a broken appliance, or a storm in Krum, TX, mold is a common type of secondary damage. Some signs are easily noticeable while others may require the work of an indoor environmental specialist. 

1. Visible Discoloration and Textures
Depending on where the mold is located, it may be very easy to find. Mold growth can make itself known through discoloration on various surfaces. While you may first think of black mold, it can come in a variety of colors, from green to pink to orange. You may also notice different textures ranging from slimy to fuzzy.

2. Unusual Odors
If you cannot see the mold, you might be able to smell it. If there is a musty odor in the building without a clear source, there could be mold growing inside of the walls or underneath the flooring. If this is the case, a professional mold remediation company can perform a mold test to find it.

3. Professional Inspections
Mold can grow in nearly any environment if there is moisture present. Even if you cannot see or smell it, there may be a hidden infestation after water damage. An indoor environmental specialist will have the right training, experience and equipment to locate any mold for you. An inspection done by a professional is the best way to locate this growth if there are no physical signs.
Mold can continue to spread very quickly throughout your building if it is not removed. For this reason, it is important to have mitigation and restoration done as soon as possible. An indoor environmental specialist can perform a thorough inspection of the building to help determine what actions need to be taken.

What to Do When Your Toilet is Leaking

1/13/2021 (Permalink)

Leakage of water from a toilet due to blockage of the pipe No one enjoys a leaking toilet

Steps To Take When You Find a Leaky Toilet In Your House

No one enjoys a leaking toilet. If you find one in your Denton, TX, home, it's imperative to fix the problem quickly. So, here are a few steps to take when you find a leaky toilet in your house.

Locate the Leak
First, you'll need to figure out where the leak is emanating from. The location can tell you a lot. If it's coming out of the top, there's a good chance that you'll able to engage in toilet repair. Unfortunately, a leak that begins from underneath the toilet points to larger issues. Here are some other places to check for leaks:

  • The feed line
  • The gaskets
  • The bowl (in case of any cracks)

You may be able to simply tighten the applicable bolts with a screwdriver or a similar tool. If it comes to pass that the leak can't be fixed, you'll probably need to replace your toilet.

Call Experts
Before going any further, it's wise to seek out help. Restoration experts can help you determine whether your leaking toilet is repairable, thus saving you substantial funds. If not, the professionals can handle the replacement process with care. Otherwise, you could end up severely damaging your house and your belongings.

Turn Off the Water
The last thing you want is to start a flood in your house, especially when it consists of water from an old toilet. In order to avoid this, turn off the water. There should be a shutoff valve somewhere behind the toilet. Try to drain the remaining water as well, especially if the toilet is being removed. This can prevent further leakage during the cleanup process.

Clean Up Surrounding Water
A toilet leak is bad enough without adding in a mold problem. One of the most essential things to do after discovering a leak is to mop up the water surrounding your toilet. If you don't want to ruin your towels, you can use paper towels and any available buckets.
A leaking toilet may certainly be a nuisance, but it can be dealt with efficiently. Just to remember to stay calm and act quickly.

How To Keep Your Fire Sprinklers Ready

1/13/2021 (Permalink)

red head of a fire sprinkler Keep your fire sprinklers ready

How do you know if your fire sprinkler system will do the job when the time comes? The only way to be sure is if you do your job by performing regular maintenance.

How Sprinkler Systems Work

Fire suppression systems are more complex than one might think. When a fire breaks out, the heat from the flames triggers the nearest sprinkler heads. Pressurized water pours from those specific nozzles. This way, the water is concentrated on the actual fire and your property suffers less water damage.

When You Should Inspect Your Sprinklers Aside from the sprinkler heads, there are a lot of valves and intricate piping that are hidden from view. All of these parts need to be routinely inspected to make sure your fire suppression system is in top shape. You should:

  • Inspect for manual valve positioning (they should be in the "open" position), leaks and build-up on sprinkler heads weekly.
  • Examine valves, system gauges, alarms, fire department connectors and system water pressure quarterly.
  • Conduct a professional assessment of your entire fire sprinkler system yearly.

By creating a routine for upkeep, you will know that if an incident does happen, you have done all you can to be ready.

What To Do After Sprinklers Deploy
While sprinklers do a great job of limiting fire damage, they can cause quite a bit of water damage in the process. If you suffer a property fire, it is best to reach out to a commercial fire and restoration services company in Ponder, TX, for help. These experts can give you an accurate assessment of the damages and offer help and advice for dealing with fire sprinkler cleanup.
Your property’s fire sprinkler system might not be on your mind all of the time, but knowing how it works and performing regular maintenance keeps you and your system ready for when it needs to fight flames.

Common Types of Damage From Storms

1/13/2021 (Permalink)

Debri blocking road during a storm Storm damage

What Types of Damage To Expect From Different Storms

After a disaster, such as flooding, you will need to have a remediation company come and assess the damage. However, it is still good to know what types of damage to expect from different storms.

High Winds
High winds are often associated with tornadoes and hurricanes. Severe winds can fall into the following categories:

  • Straight-line winds
  • Downdrafts
  • Downbursts
  • Microbursts
  • Gust fronts
  • Derechos
  • Haboobs
  • Bow echoes
  • Tornadoes
  • Cyclones

Damage from high winds can occur on your home, landscaping, and asphalt. Fallen trees and poles can damage your home. Additionally, winds can tear away window screens, siding, and roofing. In extreme situations, your roof may come completely off.

Winter Storms
Winter storms include snow, ice, and freezing rain. Blizzards and heavy snow can cause damage to your structure, roof, siding, and gutters. Additionally, they can be associated with high winds. Ice and freezing rains can lead to water damage in homes.

Hail can happen anywhere, even in Denton, TX. However, the Mid-West sees the most hail. Hail storms often occur from May to September. The ice pellets will typically range from .2 to 1.75 inches. However, they can be much larger and cause extreme damage.
Hail damage is not always noticeable at first. It is often including cracked shingles, bent vents, and damaged gutters. Additionally, siding can be damaged. The worst part about this type of storm is that the impact can damage structural materials. Hail damage requires an immediate evaluation. Otherwise, you could end up with water flooding into your home.

Lightning storms happen everywhere and often bring fire damage. Even homes with a lightning rod could see damage to appliances, wiring, satellite dishes, antennas, communication lines, and steel structures. Unless your home is on fire, stay indoors during a lightning storm to avoid getting struck.
Storm and flood damage must be repaired quickly. Therefore, it helps if you know what types of damage are associated with different types of storms. Be on the lookout for flooding after any storm. If you are not comfortable making the repairs yourself, hire a contractor as soon as possible.

Following Mold Standards Key to Removal

12/22/2020 (Permalink)

Mold Quarantine Mold remediation services in Denton, TX

With so much going on in the day-to-day operations of your Denton, TX, business, facing facility issues can be overwhelming. If that issue is mold-related, cleaning it up may not be a simple task. Along with EPA and OSHA, the IICRC has established industry-wide mold standards. When you choose a mold remediation and restoration specialist who is certified in those requirements, it provides confidence that the problem will be correctly resolved.

Remediation Plan

When dealing with black mold, a number of questions play into what the remediation plan will look like. These include:

  • Is there visible moisture damage?
  • How long have building materials been wet?
  • Are there additional moisture problems?
  • Have there been complaints about a musty smell?
  • Are building occupants reporting musty or moldy odors?
  • Have there been any renovations or changes in the maintenance schedule?

The answers to these inquiries help determine the mold standards that should be included. If the affected area is under 10 square feet, the work needed may be minimal. Anything over that size may involve extensive effort. Regardless of the damage, a professional plan will identify, correct, remove and mitigate the growth.

Cleanup Methods
Professionals have an arsenal of mold clean up tools and processes. They follow common standards, such as wet vacuums for extracting water and certified mold cleaning products for wiping surfaces, which are key to stopping the spread of mold. These experts also utilize PPE and other high-tech equipment, including a HEPA vacuum and different containment tools, to eliminate the source of the problem. There are also standards for the removal and disposal of damaged materials to ensure other areas of the building are not contaminated.
If a pesky fungus rears its head in your business, ensuring the problem is properly taken care of is imperative. Trusting a company certified and experienced with mold standards can help make it “Like it Never Even Happened.”

Immediately Addressing a Water Loss Minimizes Business Interruption

12/22/2020 (Permalink)

Drying equipment placed in a building Commercial water damage in Ponder, TX

Business owners in Ponder, TX, know that the unexpected will eventually happen. Staying on top of insurance and putting emergency plans in place are keys to navigating events, such as flooding from a broken pipe. Along with due diligence regarding the structure, a focus also needs to be on what a business interruption may mean. Being prepared for downtime, lost revenue and other negative effects can make or break a business.

Formulate a Plan

Although some things are unavoidable, having a good grasp on potential risks, what they may mean to the business and how to bounce back is necessary. A good plan addresses the following:

Determine Risks – Every business is different and may face different issues that could result in an interruption. Along with potential environmental problems, such as flooding, the human factor also needs to be considered. Once the risks are known, it is easier to figure out which may be preventable.
Know the Cost – Analyzing the risks includes calculating their costs. Factors that come into play include lost income, additional expenses and possible penalties.
Have Insurance Coverage Clarity – Insurance is easy to forget about until it is needed. If large water damage, do you know what will and won’t be covered?
Take Prevention and Mitigation Steps – Once the risks are known, you can determine if they can be prevented, deterred or mitigated and create a plan that addresses that.

Make Cleanup a Priority
With a plan in place, facing flooding is a little more manageable. The plan to minimize losses does require immediate action to be taken. Along with filing a claim, contacting a water damage and restoration specialist should top the list. The next step is taking steps to stop the damage from happening. Along with finding the source of the problem, water removal and drying process should be started as soon as possible.
Running a business comes with many unknowns, but how to deal with a loss from flooding or other event doesn’t have to be one of them. Creating a plan of action may minimize claim losses and get your business back to "Like it never even happened," faster.