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My Basement’s Flooded! What Now?

2/19/2020 (Permalink)

Completely flooded basement. It is visible line showing maximum water level higher than 7 feet. A basement flood can result in large cleanup and restoration bills

Ways To Get Your Home Back To Pre-Loss Condition

Discovering a basement flood at your Scottsdale, AZ, home can be an anxiety-provoking experience. Where do you even start the cleanup process? Take these steps for the easiest way to get your home back to its preloss condition:

1. Practice Caution

First and foremost, make sure that it’s safe to step into the basement. If there are electrical appliances, or if the water has risen above the electrical outlets, it isn’t safe to even touch the water; an electrical current will be traveling through the water. Cut the power off at the main breaker if you can safely reach it.

2. Investigate for Water Source

There are numerous possible causes of excessive water in the basement. The source may not be immediately apparent; it could be a burst pipe, heavy rainfall, foundation cracks or a sewer backup.

3. Dry Affected Area

A wet/dry vacuum comes in very useful for removing standing water and small bits of debris. Once the standing water is eliminated, open windows and doors and run fans. Dehumidifiers can also be a valuable resource to use for a basement flood since basements are often poorly ventilated.

4. Discard Unsalvageable Materials

There will probably be materials that you wouldn’t expect to be deemed unsalvageable from a flooded basement. These could include drywall, carpet, wooden furniture and other porous materials. Any porous items that can’t be fully dried within 48 hours usually need to be discarded as it’s likely mold has already begun to grow.

5. Contact Professionals

Water damage cleanup professionals will need to come to clean up and restore the major damage. Mold can begin to grow within 24 hours of the introduction to moisture. The professionals will make sure everything is dried and cleaned thoroughly and will return your home to its preloss condition.
A basement flood can result in large cleanup and restoration bills. Be sure to contact your insurance company to determine the extent of your insurance coverage.

When You Need To Call Restoration Experts

1/29/2020 (Permalink)

Three technicians introducing air movers in a building for drying purposes after water damage Water restoration cleanup in Rio Verde, AZ

When You Need To Call Restoration Experts

You may think that you can handle a pipe burst cleanup yourself. However, even a small flood can cause a lot of damage, especially if your belongings are not dried properly. That is why you should enlist the assistance of a water restoration company.
Water restoration businesses don’t just dry wet items in your Rio Verde, AZ, building. Professionals from these establishments can also remove sewage or mold. Experts can even find and address larger issues within the property before they cause more severe damage.
Cleanup specialists additionally have the proper training and equipment to do the job safely. If you attempt to restore the property on your own, you could put yourself, your employees and your building at risk for further harm. Instead, contact professionals when you see potential signs of water problems, including:

  • Floor damage
  • Mold
  • Wall damage

Damage Prevention

Even if you don’t have of these problems yet, you can still use pipe burst cleanup specialists to prevent possible damage. These experts will be able to find warning signs such as corrosion or condensation on the pipes. The professionals can then address the situation before it causes a major incident.

Emergencies

When you see a broken pipe or another water disaster, you need to call the professionals immediately. If you wait too long, mold will start to grow. This could cause even more damage and cost more money to fix.
A sewer cleanup company can help if there is a major toilet overflow or a septic problem. You should not attempt to fix these potentially dangerous situations yourself. Instead, your priority should be getting yourself and your employees out of the building. The same is true when there is obvious mold growth or when electrical wires may be exposed to the water.
Any major pipe burst cleanup should be handled by professionals. They can keep you and your employees safe while restoring wet items and preventing further damage.

How to Know if a Business’s Water Is Contaminated

1/24/2020 (Permalink)

Water May Be Contaminated warning sign Call a commercial building restoration specialists immediately if you are dealing with contaminated water

Things You Need to Know About Water Contamination

Contaminated water in a commercial setting can occur due to a variety of factors. Whether there has been a flood or a burst pipe, black water is never a pleasant sight for business owners. Fortunately, the professionals at SERVPRO have the experience and expertise that insurance agents and adjusters are looking for. To ensure that these restoration specialists address your needs properly, here is everything you need to know about water contamination that targets businesses in North Scottsdale, AZ.

Traces of Sediment

In some cases, determining whether water is contaminated is as simple as observing its appearance. If there are traces of sediment in the liquid, it has likely become polluted in some way. Be sure to look for the following signs of sediment when inspecting potentially contaminated water:

  • Dirt
  • Sand
  • Clay
  • Sewage or waste

If you notice any indications of black water, be sure to call SERVPRO professionals immediately. This type of water can cause severe damage to a business, especially if it isn’t removed right away.

Unpleasant Smell

To determine whether the water in a business is contaminated, it’s often helpful to use your senses. A strong and unpleasant smell that comes from floodwater or a broken supply line likely points to water that has become polluted at some point. If this is the case, be sure to request professional assistance as soon as possible. Water that has begun to emit an unfavorable scent may have already accumulated various forms of dirt or sewage that can lead to serious forms of water damage if left untreated.
If a business is dealing with contaminated water, calling commercial building restoration specialists immediately is crucial to the safety of the company. Thanks to the highly effective methods and solutions that the experts at SERVPRO utilize, insurance agencies all over the country confidently turn to them as their preferred vendor in any disaster.

What You Need To Know About Mold Toxicity

1/10/2020 (Permalink)

Fungi Fusarium which produce mycotoxins in cereal crops that affect humans and animals Mycotoxin is a scary word, and mold is nothing to be taken lightly, but in most cases, the situation can be cleaned up

When dealing with mold in a business, it's smart to cut right to the chase: are molds toxic? After all, molds are a type of fungi, part of the group including yeast, mildew and mushrooms, and everyone knows that mushrooms can be deadly. A mycotoxin is a special type of mold that can be found in association with foods.

How To Identify Mold

Most people know mold when they see it. It is usually a dark or green blotch found growing on a bathroom wall or ceiling. It can be identified by some of the following characteristics:

  • It exudes a musty odor
  • It grows in a damp, moist environment
  • It forms colonies that grow in irregular patterns

Mold is formed by microscopic spores, and it is a naturally occurring organism. A mycotoxin will not necessarily be present with most molds, but it is a good idea to get things checked out quickly. A mold mitigation team in Scottsdale, AZ, can arrive on the scene and do an inspection and damage assessment. This can tell you what type of mold is present and what steps to take to remove it.

How To Clean Mold

Proper mold remediation is the key to the removal of excess amounts of mold at a business. This often involves finding a water source such as a leaking roof or a broken pipe. Mold thrives in high humidity. Once the moisture has been removed, the mold can be cleaned up with a variety of advanced procedures. Mycotoxin is a scary word, and mold is nothing to be taken lightly, but in most cases, the situation can be cleaned up "Like it never even happened."

How To Choose the Best Fire Insurance Protection for Your Business

12/30/2019 (Permalink)

Warehouse Fire Inside Commercial fire damage in Rio Verde, AZ

Fires can be so destructive because even a small fire can cause extensive smoke damage to equipment, inventory and other property. While it may be hard to imagine facing fire damage at your Rio Verde, AZ, place of business, it’s important to protect yourself with adequate property insurance.
Fire coverage is generally part of your basic commercial insurance policy. Choosing the right level of coverage is essential. If you do have a fire, you’ll want to focus on the cleanup and restoration, not on the fear of devastating financial consequences.

3 Levels of Fire Coverage

Three forms of fire coverage are available to business owners. The causes and the types of damage covered vary between the levels.

Basic Form – This most basic level contains a specific, short list of covered perils or causes. Examples of perils covered in a basic commercial insurance policy include fires caused by explosions or lightning.
Broad Form – This level covers everything in the basic form and allows for specifying additional perils and secondary damage provisions. Water damage caused by fighting the fire would be an example of an additional Broad Form provision.
Special Form – This is the most expensive and comprehensive level. The only perils not covered will be specifically noted, and anything not mentioned is considered allowable for coverage.

The Best Choice for Your Business

Ideally, you would have Special Form commercial insurance with few exclusions, but the premium cost can be prohibitive for some businesses. A Broad Form policy may be sufficient if it is designed with your risk in mind.
Your structure’s age, hazardous equipment and the presence of tenants are examples of risk factors. Your insurance agent or local fire restoration specialist can help you assess your risk. Then you might choose a Broad Form policy that includes the perils associated with your risk factors.
“Better safe than sorry,” has never been more apropos than with insurance protection for fire damage. Taking the time to assess your risk and choose the best coverage may help you sleep better, knowing you and your property are protected.

3 Ways To Operate Your Business During a Power Outage

12/24/2019 (Permalink)

Broken snapped wooden power line post with electrical components on the ground after a storm Power outage in North Scottsdale, AZ

3 Ways To Operate Your Business During a Power Outage

The productivity of your North Scottsdale, AZ  business can suffer if a storm leads to a power outage. Electric energy is essential to activate nearly all devices in the building, and without it, your employees can lose access to work and fall behind strict deadlines. Fortunately, there are alternative options that can allow your workforce to catch up on any assignments with little to no delay.

1. Using Backup Generators

The most common solution to an outage is a portable generator. This device is an electrical generator powered by an engine that can provide the building with enough energy to function for a limited time. Use it to accomplish low-energy tasks and catch up on important work before power returns. Just remember that the generator uses gas like a regular engine, so keep it in a ventilated location and provide proper maintenance to avoid malfunction or fire hazards.

2. Installing UPS

A power outage can be a nasty surprise when you work on a computer, as it can shut it down immediately and damage any unsaved files. Avoid this incident by installing an uninterruptible power supply (UPS) in each business computer. This device provides emergency power drawn from the computers' own batteries. This will give you and the employees enough time to finish work, save files and turn off the devices safely.

3. Finding Wi-Fi Connections

Your Wi-Fi router may shut down after an outage, but there are other ways to use this resource. You can use the company cellphones and data plan to create a hotspot that provides wireless internet. Additionally, the employees' own homes, restaurants and stores can provide free Wi-Fi. Remember to compensate employees for working offsite and use the connection to complete assignments and contact necessary services such as storm cleanup and restoration.
Storms can greatly disrupt your business and create a profit loss. Find the right solution to prevent a power outage from damaging your establishment.

What To Do About Basement Floods

12/12/2019 (Permalink)

Completely flooded basement. It is visible line showing maximum water level higher than 7 feet. Flooded basement in Scottsdale, AZ

A basement flood is a major inconvenience. Knowing some common causes of flooded basements can help you prevent this from happening to your Scottsdale,AZ, home.

Why Basements Flood

There are many reasons you may find water in your basement. The following are some of the most common:

  • Insufficient sealing
  • Incorrectly installed downspouts
  • Poor landscape grading
  • Leaking water heater
  • Leaking pipes

Basements should be properly sealed to keep out moisture. Downspouts should be placed at least five feet from the exterior basement wall and should be directed away from the home. Additionally, the yard should slope downward from the house so that water can flow away. These precautions should prevent water from entering your basement from outdoors. However, water from indoor sources poses just as much risk. Make sure to repair any indoor leaks as soon as possible. If you have a sump pump, perform routine maintenance on it so that it can remove any water before it becomes a problem.

How To Clean a Flooded Basement

If you do experience a basement flood, it is important to clean up the area as quickly as possible to prevent mold growth and structural damage. First, remove the standing water using pumps or a specialized vacuum. Then, you will want to remove all soaked items so that you can address them separately. Make sure not to return these items to the basement until they are fully clean and dry. Next, use fans or a dehumidifier to dry out the rest of the moisture. Depending on the level of contamination in the flood water, you may need to sanitize all the surfaces that came into contact with it.
Precautionary measures go a long way toward preventing a basement flood. However, you may still find water damage in your basement. If you feel overwhelmed by the cleanup process, a certified restoration team can help you get your basement back to pre-flood condition quickly and safely.

3 Ways to Keep Working During a Power Outage

12/6/2019 (Permalink)

Generator on outside of building. A portable generator can be a great investment for your business.

While a storm in Scottsdale, AZ might not always mean disaster, it can sometimes put a hold on your workday. Many tasks require electricity as well as a strong connection to the internet. If there is a power outage in your building, you could call it day, but there are some alternatives you may want to consider first.


1. Use a Generator


Smaller models are generally not made to be run for more than a few hours at a time, but it can help you reach a decent stopping point for your work. It can also give you a chance to save your documents and reduce the risk of losing important information.


2. Find an Alternate Location


Many public places have access to free Wi-Fi, so you could easily move over to a coffee shop with your laptop to get some more work done. However, this is best used as a short-term solution. If you need to continue working for longer periods, you may want to have everyone work from home.


3. Do Offline Work


Another option you have is to simply work without power. If there are tasks that you can do without being connected to the internet or a power source, then you can focus on these until the power outage is over. This allows you to remain productive without having to leave the office in search of another suitable place to work. Once the electricity is back, you can return to work as usual.


If the storm is severe enough to cause a power outage, then it could potentially cause some other problems for your building as well. High winds could loosen roof tiles or shutters, and rain could cause leaks or flooding. If this has happened, a cleanup and restoration service can help. They can perform mitigation and repairs to return your building to its previous condition.

Where Does Mold Grow?

12/2/2019 (Permalink)

bathroom fan Inspecting your home frequently can prevent mold damage

Every home is susceptible to mold damage. With plumbing lines running through walls and humidity levels giving way to fogged mirrors, it is surprising that more homeowners don't understand the risk. That is why you should have your home inspected by remediation experts in Scottsdale, AZ, every so often, to ensure that your house is safe. However, if you are not ready to find a professional service, then at least inspect the five most common areas for mold to develop in your home.

Kitchen
Laundry room
Bathroom
Basement
Attic

Kitchen


While it might not seem like the kitchen is a likely place for mold growth, especially since you use this room frequently, think again. Kitchens often have increased moisture in the air because of cooking, and if that moisture is not adequately vented, then you can end up with a mold problem.


Laundry Room


Next place to inspect for mold and mildew growth is your laundry room. The washer and dryer can create an environment for high humidity, which is a direct cause of mold development.


Bathroom


Similar to laundry rooms, a bathroom experiences high humidity and moisture levels in the air while taking baths or showers. Mold damage loves excess moisture. While bathrooms often use mold-resistant building materials, the HVAC and insulation are still susceptible to mold growth.


Basement


Basements are prime environments for mold because they are often poorly ventilated and full of moisture due to mechanical closets and exposed piping. Therefore, it is recommended that dehumidifiers be placed in basements to help reduce the risk of fungal development.


Attic


Last, attics often go unnoticed. While roof vents might help to deter a moisture problem from developing, if there is a hole in the roofline that goes unnoticed, then mold spores can take root and multiply.


Mold damage is a problem that every homeowner needs to be keenly aware of. By inspecting the rooms that are most susceptible and installing prevention measures, like dehumidifiers, you can prevent a possible issue from developing. However, it doesn't hurt to have a professional home assessment either.

How To Put Out a Grease Fire

11/27/2019 (Permalink)

dirty stove top Grease fire can spread quickly, keep your stove tops clean

That home-cooked meal may taste good; however, it could put your property at risk, especially during times when oil is involved. After all, when hot, this liquid has the tendency to fly, burning the chef and possibly starting flames. If this happens, you'll need to react quickly and understand appropriate safety protocols. Grease fire, in fact, requires special care; therefore, homeowners in Scottsdale, AZ, should know the proper steps to smother it.


1. Be Prepared


Oil and water don't mix, and this combination does not help put out blaze. Instead, stock your home with a fire extinguisher designed to halt the combustion. Three are three types of devices: A, B and C. Usually level B, contains chemicals to end oil fires. Check the label on the canister, ensuring you have purchased the correct one. Then, locate a spot to store it, thinking about ease of use. You want to be able to grab it quickly. Also, as you cook, think prevention. Don't keep towels or other cloth items within the vicinity of the stove. You don't want sparks to land on it.


2. React Quickly


At the first sign of a problem, seek ways to cut off the oxygen supply. Without the gas, the flames cannot build. Turn off the burner or oven. Then, grab a metal cover and place it on top, hoping to eliminate the situation. Grease fire may also be stopped with baking soda and salt. Be careful with this attempt though. The wrong ingredient could make it worse. If these early attempts fail, try the extinguisher, remembering to pull the pin and aim low, moving it from side to side.


3. Get Help


If you cannot handle the situation, then leave the room and call 911 for help. Next, call a fire restoration company, and have them evaluate kitchen, determining the extent of fire cleanup and needs for repairs. The specialists have equipment to remove smoke and soot, as well as deodorize the room. In addition, they can assist in salvaging some valuables.


Be proactive. Grease fire can spread quickly. Understand what can extinguish the flames and know how to proceed.