Archived Blog Posts
Keep Sneaky HVAC Mold at Bay
Mold may be part of life, but it doesn’t have to be an overwhelming problem
Keep Mold in the HVAC System at Bay
Whether a new, old, small, or large business, the people running it have plenty of things on their minds. When it comes to the structure the business operates out of, it can be easy to overlook what can’t be seen. One area of maintenance easily forgotten is HVAC cleaning—a surprising key to mold prevention.
While mold can easily be spotted on walls, floors and areas prone to water, it can also hide in air ducts. Below are three steps to help spot and deal with sneaky mold issues.
1. Inspect the HVAC system. Unfortunately, mold is something that pops up quickly and never completely goes away. Fortunately, it’s easy to minimize its growth by regularly checking around the system for moisture—mold fuel. Any signs of moisture around ducts, vents and the system’s parts, such as blowers, could indicate it’s time for an HVAC cleaning. Also, check that the drain and condensation pans are draining and not retaining water.
2. Get the system cleaned. Mold doesn’t only need moisture to make its rounds. It can also grow on dust inside the ducts and vents. Cleaning vents help reduce the accumulation of mold and keeps airflow operating smoothly. Business owners in Chester Springs, PA, with the potential for mold in their vents, should call an expert to help resolve the issue quickly and professionally.
3. Preventive maintenance keeps the mold away. Once an HVAC system is cleaned, it's time to set up a regular maintenance plan. Change filters regularly to stunt future growth, and ensure that the filters are positioned correctly. Continue to regularly inspect the system and its components for any moisture buildup or improperly functioning parts. Additionally, regular general dusting and vacuuming can help air ducts stay relatively clean, keeping mold from serious growth. Lastly, be sure to set up an annual cleaning appointment with an HVAC expert.
Mold may be part of life, but it doesn’t have to be an overwhelming problem. While HVAC cleaning may not be on the priority list, its benefits can help put business owners’ minds at ease.
FASTER TO ANY DISASTER
SERVPRO's 1-4-8 Service Response Guideline.
FASTER TO ANY DISASTER
Fire and water damages are never scheduled. Will you be prepared? Whether it's a burst pipe in an apartment complex or an electrical fire in an office building; SERVPRO is always ready. There's no such thing as a small emergency when it threatens the welfare of the tenants and the revenue of the property owner.
SERVPRO Franchise Professionals can manage the damage. With more than 1500 franchises in 48 states and over 40 years of business in the cleanup and restoration industry, you can rest easy knowing help is on the way. SERVPRO Professionals always keep thorough and detailed communication throughout the restoration process to help keep you informed and in control. SERVPRO's reputation has been built through experience and training in mitigation damages ranging from single-family homes to skyscrapers, and even the Pentagon!
Because emergency situations are never scheduled, SERVPRO implicates the 1-4-8 method of Service Response Guidelines to ensure efficient and timely services. The 1-4-8 Service Response Guideline method means that:
1- Within one hour from notice of loss, a SERVPRO Franchise Professional will contact you to arrange for service.
4- Within 4 hours of loss notification, a SERVPRO Franchise Professional will be on-site to start mitigation services (if necessary).
8- Within eight business hours of on-site arrival, a verbal briefing of the scope will be communicated to the appropriate person.
This response method helps to ensure that SERVPRO Professionals may help to avoid revenue loss for property owners and minimize inconvenience to tenants. Timely restoration services along with SERVPRO's Professional equipment and industry-approved techniques can help you resume normal business functions and may save you time and money. Available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, SERVPRO Professionals will work hard to restore your property and your peace of mind.
The Fire is Just the "Starter"...
After a fire is extinguished, the process of restoration has just begun...
Fire damage is an unfortunate and significant event that comes in varying degrees. If you happen to experience a fire loss at your home or business, the extinguishing of the fire is just the start of a complicated process that we at SERVPRO of North East Chester County pride ourselves on being able to help you facilitate.
Beyond the accumulation of soot and smoke damage, fire losses also usually accumulate significant amounts of debris and fire extinguisher discharge (if water is not used). These materials may be hazardous and are certainly unwanted and need to be appropriately removed and cleaned up after. Our technicians at SERVPRO of North East Chester County are ready to spring into action and handle the aftermath.
Oftentimes after a fire loss, some contents of a home or business must be inventoried, packed, cleaned off-site, and sometimes stored while the affected areas are cleaned and restored. At SERVPRO of North East Chester County, we are organized and thorough in our approach to making sure that your belongings are accounted for and restored, so once your home or business is ready to be loved in again, your belongings are returned "Like it never even happened."
You Cook...We Clean!!!
We clean while you cook!!!
Everyone loves a home-cooked meal or dining out with friends at a favorite restaurant, but who wants to clean up the kitchen???
SERVPRO of North East Chester County is ready and willing to provide professional, deep cleaning of your commercial or residential kitchen! Our skilled technicians have the equipment and the know-how to restore your kitchen - the heart of your home or business - to a pristine state that looks, smells, and feels clean.
Our technicians will hit all of those hard-to-reach spots that probably haven't been cleaned since the appliances first came off the truck. Your kitchen will feel and smell so fresh you will want to host the next family dinner or friends' dinner party to show off your newly restored space.
Re-inspire your culinary staff with a professionally cleaned work space, and re-ignite their sense of pride and responsibility to maintain your restaurant kitchen. We take on the tough chores that you can never quite get to and can restore tired-looking, greasy equipment to a like-new luster!
3 Reasons Why You Need a Certified Water Damage Expert
IICRC certifications provide credibility in the industry.
There Are Three Reasons Why You Should Hire A Certified Water Damage Expert.
When you have a broken pipe in your business in Spring City, PA, and you know you need a water cleanup specialist, be sure they have the proper documentation from the Institute of Inspection, Cleaning, and Restoration Certification. Here are the top three reasons why this certification is important.
1. You Want Someone You Can Trust To Do the Job Right
The IICRC has certified more than 50,000 technicians and 6,500 firms worldwide. IICRC certifications provide credibility in the industry. They show that a technician has been trained and knows how to get the job done right. These facts should help build your confidence because you know that you are putting the restoration of your valuable property into the hands of a professional.
2. You Want Someone Who Knows Water Cleanup Methods
When it comes to water damage restoration, the IICRC offers certification as a Water Damage Restoration Technician. This certification shows that the technician understands water damage and knows how to perform remediation work. Study topics for this certification include effects, water losses, techniques, drying of structures, contamination, and sewer backflows. The WRT certification also serves as the prerequisite for the IICRC Commercial Drying Specialist, which is an advanced certification.
3. You Want Someone Who Knows How To Dry Commercial Structures
The CDS has demonstrated the ability to manage large drying operations for complex industrial, institutional, commercial, and residential buildings. These specialists are proficient in analyzing the anatomy of commercial properties and have improved inspection expertise and an advanced understanding of the drying process. It is not likely that you will find someone more suited to restoring your business as it was.
The IICRC certifies water cleanup professionals worldwide to provide you with the peace of mind that you will be getting your money’s worth when you hire a certified water damage expert.
The SERVPRO Emergency Response to Claims
It may be a relatively minor incident or a devastating loss. No matter the extent of the damage, SERVPRO is Faster to Any Size Disaster.
SERVPRO's Emergency Claims Response
Emergencies don't take place on a schedule. When your company experiences a disaster in South Pottstown, PA, you need help as soon as it occurs. Immediate repairs, protection against further damage, insurance claim services — it all has to happen fast.
Using the Emergency Response
A professional restoration service with agents available 24/7 can be your lifeline after you experience perils such as:
- Tornado or storm damage
- Water damage from rain or flooding
- High winds
It may be a relatively minor incident or a devastating loss. No matter the extent of the damage, SERVPRO is Faster to Any Size Disaster. When you call, a technician is available to take your information at any time of day. The company has more than 1,900 locations across the country. It can reach 90% of all United States ZIP codes within two hours.
While you can't predict when a disaster will occur, you can prepare. The Emergency Ready Plan is designed to give you a strategy before a catastrophe happens.
Technicians conduct a no-cost assessment of your property. You complete a profile document that contains a concise list of critical information you need after an emergency. You benefit from a plan with:
- A chain of command to authorize work
- Facility details such as priority areas and shut-off locations
- Assistance with claim services
Getting Back to Work Quicker
After a disruption, you and your employees want things to return to normal as soon as possible. The Emergency Ready Plan helps you go through the restoration process quickly and smoothly. Avoiding downtime ensures you keep up your levels of productivity and gets everyone back to work “Like it never even happened”.
A disaster can strike your South Pottstown, PA, business at any time. That doesn't mean you have to be unprepared. A fast-acting remediation company helps you with cleanup, restoration, and claim services — every step of the way.
A Guide to the Three Types of Water Damage
Three types of contaminated water and how to treat each one if your Phoenixville, PA, property is affected.
The Three Types of Water Damage
Water damage can occur due to several reasons. But no matter the cause, the water will be placed into one of three categories based on the level of contaminants present. This guide will break down the three categories of contaminated water and how to treat each type if your property in Phoenixville, PA, is impacted.
1. Category 1: Clean Water
As its name suggests, clean water is free of any contaminants and therefore not harmful upon exposure. This type of water damage can present itself wherever there is a clean water supply line, such as an overflowing sink or hose. If you experience Category 1 damage, blot up or remove as much of the water as you can and get the area to dry as quickly as possible to avoid mold growth.
2. Category 2: Gray Water
Contaminated water featuring chemical or biological elements is known as gray water. While this water carries microorganisms or bacteria, it is not as severely unsanitary as the final category. A sump pump failure or overflown toilet without fecal matter can be classified as gray water damage, as can water with chemical elements in it such as bleach or detergents. This type of damage is a bit more severe and requires extensive cleaning to prevent further harm.
3. Category 3: Black Water
The most unsanitary of all contaminated water, Category 3 damage contains high levels of bacteria, chemical toxins, and other hazardous properties. This largely presents itself in sewage backup and floodwater, though Category 2 water can develop into Category 3 if it sits stagnant for too long. If your property is infiltrated by this harmful water, immediately call a water damage cleanup company.
These pros are fully equipped to remove the unsanitary water and disinfect the impacted space.
Knowing which category you are dealing with is important for the cleanup process, and often the water source will indicate the level of contaminants present.
3 Types of Damage a Winter Storm May Cause
If you have storm damage, call SERVPRO, we respond immediately and begin clean-up procedures pertinently. Contact us for your storm loss emergency!
There Are Three Types Of Damage That A Winter Storm Can Cause.
When winter weather strikes South Pottstown, PA, the resulting icy blasts of below-zero temperatures, high winds and heavy snowfall can have a serious effect on your home. Inspecting your home after a winter storm can help you gauge any type of damage so you can take steps to have it repaired, keeping you and your family safe.
1. Roof Damage
Extreme winter weather can wreak havoc on your home, but few areas are as vulnerable as its roof. High winds can peel off shingles and damage flashing, leaving your attic vulnerable to animals and moisture. Heavy snow can also cause areas of the roof to buckle or droop. If you notice this or other problems after a powerful storm, you can cover the area with a tarp or secure your attic until you can get assistance.
2. Burst Pipes
When temperatures drop below freezing during a blizzard, your home's pipes could expand as water freezes inside them. After several days of frigid weather, outdoor and indoor wall pipes may burst, causing flooding in and around your home. Water damage can cause mold growth and warping of wood flooring and furniture, but insulating your pipes by wrapping them in fabric or insulated foam can prevent this from happening.
3. Ice Dams
Periods of freezing and thawing can cause your home's gutters to malfunction during a winter storm. Clogged or slow-draining gutters may form ice dams, causing water to back up into your home and leave behind considerable water damage to your ceilings and walls. A storm damage and restoration service can assist by clearing and repairing your gutters to ensure they drain properly.
When a winter storm howls through South Pottstown, PA, the resulting damage to your home could be considerable. Knowing what to look for and when to call for assistance for repairs can keep your home and family safe, no matter the weather.
Commercial Storm Preparation
You can't prevent a rain storm, but you can keep it from disrupting day to day activities at your workplace.
Storm Preparation For Businesses
Many business owners in Spring City, PA, are inadequately prepared for a major rain storm event. Do you know how to protect your assets and employees in the event of a serious flood damage situation?
1. Site Assessment
One of the simplest things you can do to prepare your company for severe weather is to inspect the site. Ensure that the foundation has no major points of fluid entry and that the roof and gutters direct rainfall away from the base of all buildings. Trim any trees with dead branches, as these can become an airborne hazard during high winds. Most larger buildings will need a lightning rod, which must be maintained and properly grounded. If your site has windows that require storm shutters, draw them at the first sign of trouble.
2. Training and Readiness
Don't forget the human element. Since your employees are your most valuable asset, you must supply your workforce with sufficient information about how to respond to a severe rain storm. For tornadoes, designate an interior hallway on the ground floor as a temporary shelter. For hurricanes and other long-term hazards, ensure that your staff comply with local evacuation orders and other pertinent ordinances. If you keep normal working hours during a potential weather event, stay aware of outdoor conditions through a NOAA radio broadcast or website.
3. Other Considerations
Your insurer can assist you with a business continuance plan should a thunderstorm make normal operations impossible. Retain paper copies and digital backups of all policies, records, and tax information. If you anticipate filing a claim, contact your adjuster as soon as possible. You will also likely need a qualified professional service to help with flood cleanup.
You can't prevent a rain storm, but you can keep it from disrupting day to day activities at your workplace. Safeguard your employees and your inventory by preparing for every type of severe weather.
How Business Interruption Insurance Can Help After a Fire
Following a fire, you may be required to evacuate your property while a fire cleaning crew assesses and repairs the damage.
How Business Interruption Insurance Can Assist Following A Fire
A fire can devastate your business in Phoenixville, PA, can displace you and your employees. However, having a contingency plan that includes an insurance policy with a business interruption rider can help you continue working. In addition, your policy may help you pay for various expenses, including the following when a business fire forces you out of your space.
After a fire, you may need to evacuate your space while a fire cleaning crew assesses and repairs the damage. Your clients and vendors may expect business as usual, and insurance can help you pay to move your operations to a temporary location equipped with everything you need to run your business, including:
- Phones, scanners and computers
- Desks, chairs and other furnishings
- Utilities and other services
Rent and Mortgage Payments
Although you and your team may operate from a different location, you must still pay the rent or mortgage on your fire-damaged space. Business interruption insurance can help you pay to maintain both, while a fire cleaning service ensures you can return to your original business home.
A business fire can damage the inventory you plan to sell, leading to significant income losses. Your insurance representatives can review your profits from prior months and recommend reimbursement for profits that you will not receive due to the damage to your inventory.
After a fire, you will likely need all hands on deck to ensure you can meet your operational needs. However, if your income drops significantly, you may struggle to meet your payroll obligations. Fortunately, you can maintain your entire staff when you rely on insurance to cover your staff's wages.
You may need to train your staff to operate new equipment, perform new tasks or learn other procedures following a business fire. Again, insurance can help relieve the financial burden accompanying training your staff.
A disaster at your business in Phoenixville, PA, does not need to shut down your operation when you have business interruption insurance to help you with your expenses.
When Does Mold Growth Follow Flooding?
Maintaining low residual moisture levels afterward can prevent mold growth at a residence.
When Does Mold Start To Grow After Flooding?
If flooding has recently affected your home in South Pottstown, PA, you are likely to be concerned about the effects of water damage and mold growth. Fungus may develop within just 24 to 48 hours of primary damage. Restoration experts classify flood water as highly contaminated Category Three Water because it may contain solid waste in addition to bacteria, chemicals and other dangerous debris. Learn more about mitigation measures to limit primary storm or water damage and prevent mold.
The First Two Days
The most important mitigation measures should be taken within the first 24 to 48 hours after flooding occurs. If you have remained at home during a flood, contact a mitigation and restoration service as soon as possible. If you have evacuated, schedule a consultation immediately after returning to a damaged residence. It is ideal to have trained professionals take the following steps within the first two days:
- Assess damage
- Extract standing water
- Tear out damaged materials
- Clean and disinfect
These measures can limit primary damage and discourage mold growth. Porous materials such as carpet, drywall and insulation are difficult to disinfect and may pose an elevated mold risk. These materials should be torn out and the affected area cleaned, disinfected and permitted to dry prior to restoration.
The Week After Flooding
In the event of an evacuation, damage may be left standing for longer than 24 to 48 hours. It is important to take the measures listed above as soon as possible to limit damage. Over the next few days, the affected area should be dried. Storm damage mitigation professionals may recommend using air movers, fans or dehumidifiers.
Ideally, mitigation will commence within 24 to 48 hours of water damage. It is crucial to remove standing water as quickly as possible. Maintaining low residual moisture levels afterward can prevent mold growth at a residence in South Pottstown, PA.
3 Ways To Eliminate Odors After a Flood
If this odor is detectable after a flooded residence has been cleaned, disinfected and dried, a homeowner should arrange for professional mold testing
After A Flood, Here Are 3 Ways To Get Rid Of Odors.
Flood water is highly contaminated and can cause undesirable odors to linger at a residence in Phoenixville, PA. Secondary damage, such as mold growth, can intensify a musty smell and cause odors to return even after remediation treatments. Here are three ways to get rid of flood-related odors.
1. Clean and Disinfect the Affected Area
After standing water has been extracted from a residence, it is important to clean and disinfect the area that was flooded. Porous building materials and contents should be considered sewage loss and disposed of, as these materials are difficult to disinfect and may support the growth of odor-causing bacteria or mold. Removing every trace of flood residue is the first step toward banishing undesirable odors.
2. Make Sure Mold Is Not Growing
Homeowners can discourage mold growth by running a dehumidifier to maintain indoor relative humidity levels between 30 percent and 50 percent. The telltale musty odor associated with mold is caused by microbial volatile organic compounds released as off-gases during the growth cycle. If this odor is detectable after a flooded residence has been cleaned, disinfected and dried, a homeowner should arrange for professional mold testing.
3. Use Odor Remediation Methods
If no indications of active fungus growth are detected, a homeowner can pursue odor remediation. Damage restoration experts may recommend the use of a HEPA air scrubber to filter out odor-causing particles followed by specialized neutralization treatments such as ozone or hydroxyl generation, thermal fogging or vapor modification.
It is necessary to mitigate primary storm or flood water damage and ensure that secondary damage is not present before attempting to eliminate odors. If mold growth is present, odor remediation will not have the desired effect and will only temporarily mask indications of a larger problem. For the best results, homeowners should rely on an all-in-one mitigation and restoration service located in Phoenixville, PA.
3 Main Causes of Leaky Faucets
Over time, minerals in the water eat away at the valve seat, causing it to corrode.
The 3 Most Common Causes Of Leaky Faucets
Did you know that a leaking faucet can waste a swimming pool’s worth of water every year if not repaired? This adds up to about 10,000 gallons of water per leak. If your house in Kimberton, PA has a drip that just won’t quit, you can fix it yourself if you know the basics. Read on to discover the principal causes of leaky faucets and what to look for when repairing them.
1. Faulty Washer
A washer is a thin metal or plastic disc with a hole in the middle that functions as a spacer or to distribute load in compression-style faucets (those with separate handles for hot and cold). Whenever you turn the dripping faucet on or off, it subjects the washer to friction that wears it down. Take the old washer to a hardware store to find the correct replacement part and install it in the faucet. Incorrectly placed washers can also cause leaks, so if the leak continues, try adjusting it.
2. Damaged O-Ring
Cartridge faucets use a single valve to control the flow and temperature of water, and contain rubber o-rings that form a seal near the handle or spout. (This style of faucet often has a decorative cap on the handle if you’re unsure what kind you have.) Find the o-ring inside your leaking faucet and replace it with a new one.
3. Worn Valve Seat
The valve seat is another component of a compression faucet and is the connection between the spout and the faucet. Over time, minerals in the water eat away at the valve seat, causing it to corrode. This happens faster if you have hard water, and will probably be apparent upon inspection of the part. Cleaning or replacing the valve seat should enable you to have a fixed leak.
If left alone, a leaking faucet can cause more extensive damage that requires the help of emergency restoration services. Save yourself unnecessary stress and expense by fixing those drips as soon as you discover them.
Do Renters Insurance Policies Cover Fire Damage?
A tenant should assess the terms of a policy before he or she needs to file a fire damage claim for the contents of an apartment.
Is Fire Damage Covered By Renters Insurance?
Renters insurance can cover damage to a tenant's property after a fire at an apartment or rental house in South Pottstown, PA. Structural damage should be covered by the property owner's insurance policy. Find out more about what rental policies do and do not cover, and how to file a claim.
What Is Covered
A renters policy provides coverage for the contents of an apartment or rental home. This includes items such as:
- Personal effects
Renters should select policies that cover replacement costs rather than actual cash value. This policy may also include limited amounts of loss of use and liability coverage. The latter can be helpful in the event that a third party sustains an injury on or near the property due to the fire.
What Is Not Covered
Renters insurance does not cover structural damage. The owner or landlord will need to file a separate property insurance claim for:
- Building materials
- Included contents
- Fire restoration
The process of filing a claim calls for documenting damage, a visit from an adjuster, and filing proof of loss. It is the owner's responsibility to clean up fire damage or hire a mitigation and restoration service.
Filing a Claim
A tenant should contact their insurance provider as soon as possible after a fire. The policyholder can also take several measures to support their claim, including:
- Documenting damage
- Gathering receipts
- Listing damaged contents
A renter may want to contact a restoration company to determine whether certain items can be cleaned or repaired rather than replaced. The policyholder can obtain an estimate and submit this information to the insurer.
It is important to know precisely what a renters insurance policy covers. A tenant should assess the terms of a policy before he or she needs to file a fire damage claim for the contents of an apartment or house in South Pottstown, PA.
3 Steps To Handling Water Dripping From Your Light Fixtures
While finding water in a light fixture can be a strange sight in your home, it is no less dangerous to your home than any other water leak.
Three Steps To Dealing With Water Dripping From Light Fixtures
Though you might assume any major water leaks you’d come across in your Charlestown, PA, home would materialize from something like a faulty toilet or a leaky faucet, finding dripping water in your light fixtures is actually a common occurrence. If you’re new to the problem, however, it can be hard to determine where to start in dealing with the water leak and possible ceiling damage. Here are three crucial steps to take if you find yourself needing to stop the spread of water leaking through your fixtures.
1. Turn off the electricity to your home through the breaker box. While merely shutting off the light switch of the affected light might seem like the best idea, this can be dangerous and should be avoided. After all, any contact with the electrical current from the fixture and the source of water can cause electric shock, so going straight to the breaker box is vital to staying safe.
2. Shut off the water supply to stop any leaks. While the electricity is off, it’s also important to contain the spread of water by shutting off the main water valve to your home. Depending on where the water in the light fixture is coming from, leaving the water running can create more ceiling damage or extensive problem areas inside your walls.
3. Contact a qualified restoration crew to address the situation. Once you’ve properly contained the area as safely as you can, it’s best to let experienced water damage restoration technicians handle the cleanup. After the source of the leak has been repaired and the resulting damage assessed and restored, an electrician can then suitably fix your affected light fixtures, as well.
Be Prepared for Even the Oddest of Water Leaks
While finding water in a light fixture can be a strange sight to see in your Charlestown, PA, home, it’s no less dangerous or damaging to your home than any other water leak on the property. For this reason, it’s crucial to act quickly and call upon others to help you restore your home before any more damage occurs.
Cleaning Water From a Wood Floor Helps Prevent Major Damage
Sometimes SERVPRO can save hardwood floors and sometimes they need to be removed and replaced. Call us before it's too late.
Cleaning Water From A Wood Floor Aids in the Prevention of Major Damage
Water and wooden floors in your Charlestown, PA, building don't mix well. After a leak, pipe burst or flooding in your facility, it doesn't take long for damage to set in on your hardwood flooring. It's critical to clean up the water as soon as possible to avoid replacing the wood.
To get started cleaning up a wet floor, you'll need:
- Shop vacuum
- Brush with stiff bristles
- Absorbent cloth
- Rubber gloves
- Mild detergent
Removing the Water
Time is of the essence when cleaning up a wood floor. Fibers in the wood will begin to absorb moisture quickly but release it slowly. Begin by using the shop vacuum and squeegee to draw out as much water as possible. Scrub the floor with detergent and a stiff brush to remove as much dirt and mud as you can. This process will help prevent mold growth, as mold thrives in moisture and feeds on organic material in the dirt. If the flood or pipe burst has already caused mold growth, a restoration company can mitigate damage.
Drying the Floor
Begin the drying process by increasing airflow. Open doors and windows and use fans to move fresh air throughout the space. Try putting a fan in a window or open door, then opening doors or windows on the opposite side of the room. This creates cross-ventilation to move moisture out of the area.
It's essential to dry the wet floor slowly and avoid applying heat. Wood that dries too quickly or is exposed to a heater can crack or split.
Refinishing the Floor
If your wood floor has minor warped or cupped areas, you can use a drum sander to repair them. Boards with heavy damage will need replacing. If floorboards are lifted at the ends, you can face-nail them back in place.
Cleaning up quickly after a pipe burst or flood in your Charlestown, PA, facility can help you avoid major issues down the road.
What To Do if You Smell a Musty Odor From Your AC
Black mold is a tiny organism that can create significant problems if not addressed in a timely manner. Call SERVPRO for more information.
What Should You Do If You Notice A Musty Odor Coming From Your Air Conditioner?
As a commercial property owner or manager in East-West Pikeland, PA, you know there are many tasks you must perform to keep buildings running smoothly. If you’ve ever noticed a musty odor when you run the heating or air conditioning, it might be time to check the ducts for black mold. An understanding of the signs, and how to prevent mold in the future, will help you identify the problem. Here are a few things to look for.
Signs of Mold
Even though it is small, mold leaves signs that will alert you to its presence. When determining the source of a musty odor, the first thing you should do is check for the telltale symptoms of mold:
Black dust near air ducts
Moisture or discoloration on floors or walls
Foul odors when air is flowing
If you notice any of these signs, the best thing to do is call a mold remediation specialist. Cleaning and sanitizing mold-affected items requires specialized equipment and expertise, so this is not a DIY situation. If you try to clean it on your own, you'll likely make the problem worse.
After your building is free of black mold, you’ll want to prevent it from coming back. Here are a few simple things you can do:
- Improve ventilation
- Keep gutters clean
- Change the HVAC air filter regularly
- Install a humidity sensor
- Inspect bathrooms and kitchens for water leaks
These tasks will help you keep your building free of excess moisture, which causes mold growth. Depending on your climate, you may want to consider a system-wide dehumidifier to keep levels under control. In addition, you can schedule an annual duct cleaning to ensure mold doesn’t grow unnoticed.
Black mold is a tiny organism that can create significant problems if not addressed in a timely manner. By ensuring your building has clean ducts, you’ll maintain a good space for everyone inside.
How To Create a Business Continuity Plan
A continuity plan can help business owners deal with storm or flood damage.
What Is a Business Continuity Plan and How Do I Make One?
A continuity plan can help business owners cope with storm damage or flooding at a commercial structure in Phoenixville, PA. Owners should take the following measures to limit lost revenue due to unexpected setbacks.
Perform a Business Impact Analysis
Any successful plan for continued operation after a storm or disaster calls for accurate operational data. Business owners should make several calculations:
- Average expenses and revenues
- Risk assessments for floods, storms and other types of damage
- Scenarios that could interrupt business
- The effects of supply shortages or service delays
This analysis can help owners make more informed choices with regard to property insurance policies and interruption riders. A gap analysis is another important component of a complete impact analysis.
Come Up With Continuity Options
Once a business owner has assessed the situation of a business and identified potential problems, the next step is to come up with solutions. A continuity plan may include measures to lower the total of an interruption claim or avoid the necessity of using this coverage:
- Reducing continued costs during closure
- Moving to a temporary location
- Operating out of an undamaged portion of the primary location
If specialized equipment or other issues prevent a business from operating, it is a good idea to file an interruption claim. This commercial policy rider can offset continued expenses such as rent or payroll until a business reopens. Business owners may want to refer to federal guidelines when developing a plan.
A plan cannot succeed without trained staff. Business owners should delegate responsibilities and complete training in advance of an interruption. Maintain open lines of communication in the event of a disaster.
These are the major stages of developing and implementing a continuity plan. If a business sustains storm damage or suffers from flooding in Phoenixville, PA, owners should rely on the expertise of damage mitigation and restoration professionals.
The Top 4 Recommended Locations for Fire Alarms in Your Home
Make sure a fire alarm is located 10 feet from your kitchen rather than inside it since smoke or steam from cooking can easily trigger it.
The Top 4 Places In Your Home Where Fire Alarms Should Be Installed
While you might assume that when you bought your home in Chester Springs, PA, that it came already installed with all the smoke alarms you need to keep your family safe, this is not always the case. As more research has been conducted over the years on fires and how they spread, requirements have changed. Many older homes do not meet these standards which can be dangerous in the case a fire does occur. Keep your family safe by ensuring a fire alarm is located in the following four locations!
The National Fire Protection Association suggests the placement of a fire alarm in every bedroom of the house. This ensures that if a fire occurs while your family is asleep, the alarms will wake quickly wake up everyone.
2. Outside Every Sleeping Area
Not only should alarms be inside every bedroom, there should be a smoke alarm right outside the room or any other sleeping areas as well. This is so you can react and start to escape before any fire or smoke even enters your room.
3. 10 Feet From Your Kitchen
Kitchen fires result in approximately 50 percent of all home fires, many of which result in serious fire damage to your home. Make sure a fire alarm is located 10 feet from your kitchen rather than inside it since smoke or steam from cooking can easily trigger it.
4. Every Level of Your Home
Ensure that there is as least one smoke alarm on every level of your home. Don’t forget your basement! Serious fire and smoke damage can occur from an undetected fire that starts in the basement.
It doesn’t take long for a house fire to quickly get out of hand! That’s why it is so important to have all the required fire alarms installed so you can quickly get everyone out of your house and get in contact with the fire department and a fire restoration company to minimize the fire damage to your home.
Mold and Evaporative Cooling
SERVPRO has the expertise and trained technicians and equipment to knock out the mold in your home. Call us when you need it most!
Evaporative Cooling And Mold
Residents in Phoenixville, PA, want to stay cool in the summer months. However, your home cooling systems can harbor hidden fungal agents if not properly maintained. Read on to learn how to address a leaking swamp cooler and other pressing problems.
1. About the Appliance
A swamp cooler is an air cooling system designed for climates with consistently low humidity during the summer. Because the saturation of water in the air is so low in these arid climates, it is easy for water molecules to evaporate, removing heat energy from the air during the transition. Most swamp coolers have a fan that blows air over a porous cellulose pad. This air is circulated through the house in a similar manner to conventional compressor-based air conditioners.
2. Mold Conditions
Unfortunately, because these swamp cooler units operate in warm climates and introduce moisture, they are potential sites for mold growth. This phenomenon is exacerbated by the dark conditions inside the unit and the air ducts, since direct sunlight tends to suppress mold. Other mold issues can arise due to a leaking swamp cooler, since any water that spreads beyond the direct path of the fan can build up without evaporating. This also encourages mold to grow.
If mold is in direct contact with the cellulose pad, simply purchase a replacement for your make and model of evaporative cooler. Acquire a HEPA filter for your home and ensure adequate air circulation until you can be sure that any particle contaminants are clear. If the unit leaked water into surrounding construction materials such as drywall or flooring, contact a qualified mold damage restoration service.
Remember, while the energy savings of an evaporative cooling system are substantial, they also come with certain risks. Prevent a leaking swamp cooler from becoming a major mold problem by maintaining your unit.
Fire Insurance: Why It’s Important
SERVPRO is here to help in your time of need. We are fire damage restoration experts who are available 24 hours a day to respond when you need us.
Why Do You Need Fire Insurance?
Fire insurance is essential, especially for commercial and industrial properties. While this type of insurer is excellent in the event of a fire, it is also important to note the significant coverages of most of these insurance policies.
1. Fire Damage
The most obvious coverage is for fire damage. While it is true that some business policies will cover certain losses, it is important to note that policies specific to fire disasters will likely cover all aspects of fire damage with minimal pushback from your insurer.
2. Suppression Systems and Tools
Additionally, fire insurance will likely cover any necessary maintenance expenses of your fire suppression system and equipment. This means that if an annual inspection uncovers some serious issues with your sprinkler system, then your policy will likely cover the cost of repairs.
3. Utility Repair
If a fire occurs, and not only the structure of your property is damaged, but also the utilities running throughout your facility are as well, then a fire policy will likely cover the costs of repair. This goes for damaged plumbing, electrical, gas lines and even ductwork. The coverage should also extend to duct cleaning as well, ensuring that harmful chemicals from the smoke and fumes are cleared of your HVAC system.
4. Mitigation and Restoration
Lastly, insurance geared toward fire disasters may even cover the costs associated with fire restoration. Your insurer and a disaster restoration specialist in the Phoenixville, PA, area can shed more light on the specifics of this type of coverage. However, these specialists are experts in the areas of fire and smoke cleanup which is what your policy was created for.
Fire insurance as a stand-alone policy or an addendum to your current business policy is a wise decision for your commercial property. These policies provide security in the event of significant property loss due to fires, which are more common in commercial real estate than residential properties.
How to Tell if You Must Replace My Carpet After a Flood?
Is water damage present in your home? Call SERVPRO for all your restoration needs. Our crew is always available for you!
How Can I Tell If My Carpet Needs to Be Replaced After a Flood?
Water damage can come in various levels of severity and size—from a pipe break dribbling water into a wall, to excess rain flooding an entire basement. Regardless of the issue, you may have to repair or replace parts of your home. If you’re not sure whether the floorings needs attention, pay attention to warning sides that it’s time to tear out your carpet and lay down something new.
If water finds its way onto your floor, you have a few options to remedy the situation. Minor issues require a quick fix, while more widespread flooding will deem a complete replacement. Here the possibilities when a pipe break or other water problems damage your flooring:
- Hand-dry the floor with towels.
- Dry the floor with towels and blow-dryer.
- Clean the carpets with professional-grade machines.
- Replace the carpets.
When to Replace: Black Water
Raw sewage flooding is perhaps the worst type of flood you can experience in your Spring City, PA, home. A sewer backup or major toilet leakage could send dangerous microscopic pathogens into your home. Known as black water because it contains human feces, this flood water can harm or even kill you. This will require complete restoration.
When to Replace: You Didn’t Immediately Discover the Water
If you can detect a leak or other water issues quickly, you can often salvage carpet, drywall or other parts of your home. However, if the flooding starts while you’re not at home, and water sits on the floor for days or even hours, you probably won’t be able to save the flooring. There will be too much saturation, and you should call a professional cleanup company to tear out the carpets.
There’s no reason to take chances when it comes to a pipe break and significant flooding in your house. If black water or standing water infiltrates your carpet, plan on letting a professional replace it.