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Understanding Emergency Board Up Practices

5/15/2019 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Understanding Emergency Board Up Practices Emergency board up services in Colorado Springs, CO

Understanding Emergency Board Up Practices

Fires can be destructive forces that feed on wood, insulation and other substances that make your home as its kindling. Therefore, depending on the emergency response time to your home, significant damage may occur before the blaze is extinguished. While the resulting material loss may be substantial, it is necessary to protect the surviving structure from further damages, which is where professional board up services come into play. By mitigating any further loss, these services help to reduce homeowner liability and improve the chances of a successful restoration.

1. Boarding

An emergency board up occurs quickly after a fire has been extinguished. A restoration company will enter the property, assess the structural integrity of the home, and then begin the process of securing the assets from would-be intruders, animals or other natural phenomena. Boarding up is typically used to cover any broken windows or unsecured doors. However, it may also be used to cover any holes in the walls of the building. Primarily, boarding a property will aim to secure the vertical structure.

2. Tarping

Aside from the board up process, it may be necessary to use tarps to cover any hole in ceilings or upper floors. Tarps are primarily used to cover large horizontal holes in the structure. The practice of tarping secures the property from exposure to the natural elements.

3. Mitigation

The boarding up and tarping services are used to mitigate the potential for further property loss. Most insurers require homeowners to protect their homes from further damage, and this mandate is a prerequisite to receiving aid or their policy’s coverage. Therefore, mitigation through quick response boarding and tarping services is often necessary for securing funds to help in the restoration efforts.

4. Restoration

You can contact a fire damage specialist in the Colorado Springs, CO, area to help with your restoration efforts. These companies should be able to walk you through the process of mitigation and insurance protocols. However, you should also contact your insurer.

Board up services are only a piece of the restoration puzzle, but they are instrumental in the process. Therefore, after a fire, hire a restoration company to secure your property.

Protect Your Property From Storm Damages

5/8/2019 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Protect Your Property From Storm Damages Other inspection maintenance should include trimming trees

Protect Your Property From Storm Damages

Exterior maintenance is an ongoing concern for commercial property owners. The issue becomes even more important when storms threaten. The best way to avoid expensive trouble, especially during seasons of high winds and extreme weather, is to schedule routine inspections. This makes it possible for property owners to target problems before they get to be too large.

Some crucial areas to target include

  • Membranes, such as on roofs and around windows
  • Drains; watch for debris and other things that lead to clogs
  • Aging roof shingles
  • Foundations; watch for cracks and weak areas

Regular Maintenance

Whether you perform visual inspections yourself or schedule inspections through professional construction and damage remediation professionals, it's important to keep your building maintained. For example, keep the areas around exterior appliances and electrical equipment clear, for easy access and for a clear view during inspections. Other inspection maintenance should include trimming trees and shrubbery, clearing out rain gutters and spouts, and providing access to doors and windows.

Potential Trouble

During the building inspection, watch for problem areas and plan for potential risks. For example, intruders often take advantage of times of crisis to break into properties. Be sure you can secure doors and windows quickly when storms hit. You may also want to learn more about how storms affect buildings. For example, during tornadoes, buildings may become pressurized, causing windows to burst. Ask inspection and remediation professionals what the risks are in Colorado Springs, CO.

Other trouble spots may include the following:

  • Power lines that could fall onto your buildings
  • Tree branches that may break off during storms
  • Weaknesses in the property perimeter

Professional Advice

It's important to note any suggestions and recommendations made by the professionals during a building inspection. In addition to tips about exterior maintenance, you may get valuable information about reducing property damage when storms arise and decreasing any risks to personnel, customers, and inventory.

A regular inspection and exterior maintenance schedule could prevent expensive damages. Don't wait for storm warnings to prompt action. Keep your Colorado Springs, CO, business safe from storms with preventative steps.

3 Tips for Preventing Post Flood Mold

4/25/2019 (Permalink)

Storm Damage 3 Tips for Preventing Post Flood Mold Mold growth in a Colorado Springs kitchen

3 Tips for Preventing Post Flood Mold

If your Colorado Springs, CO, has experienced flooding after a storm, then you may be worried about the possibility of mold growth. Fortunately, there are a number of things you can do to help mitigate this potential problem. Many mold remediation professionals recommend the following

1. Thoroughly Dry the Area

The first step to take care of in the event you may have mold damage is to completely dry any area affected by water. In many cases a professional restoration company may use a dehumidifier. Getting rid of the water can help make the area inhospitable to mold spores.

2. Have an Expert Test for Mold

On some occasions the potential mold growth may not yet be visible. If you believe you may have mold in your home, even after drying and sanitizing the flooded area, then a professional may be able to perform a test. Testing can include taking air samples, pulling a sample from an at-risk material, or taking a surface sample. If mold has been found, then your mold remediation professional can formulate a plan for mold removal.

3. Clean Any Water Damaged Items

Another common tip for complete mold removal includes thoroughly cleaning any items that may have been affected by the storm damage. Mold spores can grow on any organic material that contains moisture. This can include carpeting, wood, upholstery, and even drywall. Fortunately, there are a number of methods to properly clean and sanitize these items.

Because mold growth usually occurs in damp areas, thoroughly drying any flooded areas can help prevent this type of problem. If you believe mold has already set in you can have a professional test for spores. It is also a good idea to properly clean any items affected by the water damage as well. If you have any questions a professional may be able to help.

The 4 Stages of Sewer Damage Cleanup

4/18/2019 (Permalink)

Water Damage The 4 Stages of Sewer Damage Cleanup Mitigation experts may recommend increasing ventilation with air movers

Four Stages of Cleaning a Sewer Backup at a Commercial Property

Sewer cleanup procedures are intended to prevent building occupants from coming into contact with sewage or contaminants. It can take several hours for mitigation professionals to eliminate damage and a few days for the affected area to dry. Learn more about the four stages of cleaning a sewer backup at a commercial property in Colorado Springs, CO.

1. Extraction

Removing standing water and solid waste is the most critical stage of cleanup. The longer Category Three water is left standing, the higher the risk for severe primary and secondary damage to building materials and contents. It is ideal to extract water within hours of a backup.

2. Tearing Out Damage

Porous building materials and contents can sustain irreparable damage from exposure to waste water. Carpet, drywall, insulation and even ceilings beneath areas that experience a major sewer backup may need to be torn out and replaced. Sewer cleanup experts will tear out ruined materials prior to cleaning and disinfecting the area to prevent recontamination.

3. Cleaning and Disinfection

After standing water and damaged materials have been removed, the area exposed to contaminated water should be thoroughly cleaned and disinfected. This step is critical for reducing contagion and mold risks.

4. Drying

The affected area must be completely dry before restoration can proceed. Any residual moisture in a structure when rebuilding starts can increase the risk of mold growth. Mitigation experts may recommend increasing ventilation with air movers or fans and running a dehumidifier.

These are the major stages of a sewer cleanup. Depending on the severity of damage caused by a flooded toilet or sewer backup at a building in Colorado Springs, CO, it may take damage mitigation experts several days to progress through all of these stages. Non-professionals may not be able to work as quickly or eliminate every trace of contamination that could continue to support bacteria or mold growth.

Facility Maintenance: Cleaning Moldy Carpets

4/11/2019 (Permalink)

Commercial Facility Maintenance: Cleaning Moldy Carpets Vacuums with HEPA filters can help with carpet cleaning

Facility Maintenance: Cleaning Moldy Carpets

Carpet cleaning is likely part of any property’s maintenance routine. However, when dealing with mold growth, regular cleaning must be adjusted, and special precautions taken to reduce the spread of mold spores and to control the risks of further contamination.

1. Control Ventilation

The main rule when dealing with mold problems is to control ventilation. Typically, ventilation is encouraged in a property to reduce the risk of fungal development, but when dealing with an infestation, the focus is on lowering spread within the facility. Therefore, the contaminated area should be sealed off with plastic, including thresholds and vents. You can open an exterior window, placing a fan in the opening blowing outward, which will help to force spores out of the building as the carpets are cleaned.

2. Scrub

Moldy carpet cleaning requires a stiff, dry brush. Gently scrub the affected areas, freeing the surface mold. Sweep or brush the loose material into a bag, seal it and discard it. While you can use a vacuum with a HEPA filter for this, keep in mind that you will need to clean the vacuum thoroughly before using it in other areas of the property. If you do not clean the vacuum, you risk exposing other areas to mold development.

3. Use an Appropriate Cleaner

Do not use bleach. Bleach is for a nonporous surface. When used to clean mold from porous materials, it may contribute to further growth. There are some commercial mold cleaners available, but make sure that they are for mold, not mildew and that they can be used to clean porous surfaces.

4. Consult with a Specialist

A better choice for mold removal is to hire a remediation specialist in the Colorado Springs, CO, area. These professionals are certified and experienced and are likely aware of all safety precautions and chemicals needed to restore your facility.

While carpet cleaning is a routine part of property maintenance, mold removal is not. Therefore, ensure you follow basic cleaning practices to limit further exposure or hire a professional to eliminate the problem for you.

4 Steps Toward Safeguarding Businesses From Storm Damage

3/19/2019 (Permalink)

Why SERVPRO 4 Steps Toward Safeguarding Businesses From Storm Damage Keep emergency supplies handy

4 Steps Toward Safeguarding Businesses From Storm Damage

Even businesses with strong disaster plans are affected by major storms, flooding, or fires. Forty percent of all businesses affected by disasters won't open their doors again. Within one year after the mess has been cleaned up, another 25 percent will fail. This is bad news for just about everyone involved. Fortunately, insurance providers, business owners, and community leaders can take preventative steps before disaster recovery is necessary.

1. Establish Written Business Continuity Plan

These documents should contain the procedures to take when disasters threaten, during disasters, and during the recovery period. For example, if storm damage is severe, business owners may need to relocate the workplace temporarily. Other elements of this plan may include phone trees, information technology procedures, and emergency evacuation responsibilities.

2. Schedule Regular Employee Trainings

It isn't enough to cover these storm response procedures in one workshop. Employees need to be familiar and comfortable enough with the steps that they remember and carry them out with ease. When employees are clear about their individual responsibilities and have performed them several times in non-emergency situations, they are more likely to respond calmly during a disaster.

3. Keep Emergency Supplies Handy

The right equipment and supplies are vital to the success of a disaster recovery plan. Business owners should have first-aid kits, flashlights, and other emergency supplies within easy reach for employees. Other equipment, such as clean water, food, a generator, and even blankets could further safeguard the well-being of company personnel.

4. Store Copies of Key Information in Multiple Sites

During a storm, it may be impossible to access phone numbers through workplace computers. After a flood, in-house copies of insurance policies may have been thoroughly damaged; a hard copy kept in another location could provide needed information. Contact information for cleanup and recovery professionals should be included.

Successful disaster recovery actually begins long before storms hit Colorado Springs, CO. Communities, business leaders, and insurance professionals can do their part in protecting residents by providing documents and resources that increase participation in business continuity plans.

Hunting Down, Eliminating and preventing a Mold Infestation

3/18/2019 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation Hunting Down, Eliminating and preventing a Mold Infestation Bathrooms with a shower should be properly ventilated to prevent mold growth due to humidity

Mold Infestation 

The goal of most homeowners is to maintain their property, preventing damage and ensuring that their family has shelter. Mold damage is likely the worst nightmare for many of these diligent owners as it potentially threatens their desire for a sustainable shelter. Therefore, to reduce the threat of impending mold infestations, it is vital for homeowners to hunt down and eliminate existing threats while instituting preventative measures to ensure their home’s longevity.

1. Search Damp Areas

Mold and mildew growth are likely found in damp areas, like crawl spaces and basements. Performing a thorough search of these areas may allow you to pinpoint potential problems before they manifest into larger infestations and concerns. If you come across any suspicious substances, you may wish to test them before removal.

2. Test Organic Materials

Mold damage, if caught early, does not have to entail full-scale property evacuation. If you come across something that you suspect to be mold, call in an environmental hygienist to test the substance. If it is mold and it is restricted to a small area, you may be able to remain on-premise while the issue is remedied. However, that depends on the results of testing and the type of mold.

3. Remove and Resolve Issues

If you do uncover areas of significant mold growth, call a mold remediation specialist in the Colorado Springs, CO, area. These professionals should be certified by the IICRC, the nationally recognized certification of restoration and cleaning professionals.

4. Purchase Dehumidifiers and Ventilation Systems

When the issue is resolved or before you have a problem, purchase dehumidifiers and ventilation systems to ensure that your home is free of excess moisture. Areas susceptible to high humidity, such as basements, laundry areas, bathrooms, kitchens and attics, likely require some type of moisture prevention to reduce the risk of mold development.

Many homeowners find the threat of mold damage anxiety-inducing. However, with proper inspection, assessments and preventative measures, you can significantly reduce the threat of mold problems.

Replacing an Old Toilet

3/18/2019 (Permalink)

Water Damage Replacing an Old Toilet Leaking toilet in Colorado Springs, CO

True, with proper upkeep and maintenance, a toilet may last longer than initially expected, but the day will come when the seals fail, and wear gives way. When this happens and your left with a broken and leaking toilet, you will need to replace the old with a new toilet, and that can be done relatively simply.

1. Remove the Old Toilet

An old toilet can fail for many reasons, but whatever the reason, to avoid a significant water and possible sewage disaster, it is wise to remove the toilet and replace it. The steps for removal are straightforward.

  • Shut off and remove the water supply line.
  • Use water solidifier to dry up any remaining moisture.
  • Remove the bolts and toilet from the floor.
  • Remove the wax ring.
  • Block sewer gases by stuffing a rag into the exposed drain.
  • Remove and repair or replace the flange, if needed.

2. Installing the New Toilet

While a leaking toilet may not be cause for replacement, a new toilet does provide some security as a thorough fix. Thankfully, the installation of a new toilet is as straightforward a process as the removal.

  • Install the new bolts into the flange.
  • Press the wax ring onto toilet base.
  • Remove the rag from the floor drain and set the toilet in place, over the bolts.
  • Secure the toilet by using cap bases, washers and nuts.
  • Prep the tank by installing the inner workings and the bolts.
  • Secure the tank to the toilet bowl by sliding the bolts through the predesignated holes.
  • Attach and tighten all bolts, and turn on the water supply, checking for leaks.
  • Install the seat, and you’re finished.

Since not every toilet repair or replacement goes smoothly, it may be wise to have a plumbing specialist in the Colorado Springs, CO, area on standby. These individuals can swap out your toilet in no time.

While there can be numerous reasons for a leaking toilet, age may be a factor. If age is the underlying cause, then replacement is a wise decision and can be performed by you or a professional.

Why You Need an Immediate Response to Water Damage

2/18/2019 (Permalink)

Why SERVPRO Why You Need an Immediate Response to Water Damage SERVPRO of North Colorado Springs offers 24 hour emergency response service

When flooding and other water disasters affect your Colorado Springs, CO, home and family, you don't want to wait several hours for regular business hours. You need solutions immediately. SERVPRO water damage mitigation professionals offer 24-hour emergency response services. This means that if a pipe bursts on a holiday, technicians are available to respond. If heavy storm damages leave your home exposed to flooding, a fast response could prevent further harm.

You Can't Wait a Single Day

The first hours after your home is affected by water damage, many things begin to happen.

  • Furniture swells and breaks down.
  • Metal items tarnish and rust.
  • Fabric and paper items become stained.
  • Mold or mildew take hold.
  • Drywall weakens and swells.

An immediate response puts the progression of damage on hold while a corrective course of action is put into place.

It's Expensive To Delay

Many situations requiring cleaning and restoration must be addressed immediately. This is because water damage takes place within minutes. Within a short 60-second period, walls, floors, and upholstery absorb water. Finishes on tables and chairs begin to bleed. Cherished photographs start to warp and discolor. If you have to wait more than a 24-hour period for professionals to arrive, the damage becomes much harder to address.

If you have to wait just two days for services, mold may begin to spread. Important framing may warp. Metal fixtures begin to corrode. Paint blisters and wood flooring swells. As damage increases, the efforts and cost of restoring your home increase rapidly. In some cases, the structural safety of your home could be affected.

What a Quick Response Looks Like

SERVPRO franchises in Colorado Springs, CO, are always open, so technicians are ready to respond within a single hour. Before four hours pass, professionals will be at your home. Within eight hours, a plan of action will be in place, and you will be well on your way to getting back on track. A fast response to flooding is crucial; take advantage of 24-hour availability for the protection of your home.

EMERGENCY READY PROGRAM

2/15/2019 (Permalink)

Commercial EMERGENCY READY PROGRAM Many businesses have an emergency contingency plan in place, but few have a plan to get back into their buildings following a disaster.

Up to 25% of businesses close down following a disaster, according to the latest research. Of the businesses that survive, the overwhelming majority of them had a preparedness plan in place. Pre-planning can serve as an insurance policy aimed at peace of mind. And knowing you are “Ready for whatever happens” speaks trust to your clients and employees that, in the event your business is affected by a disaster, they don’t necessarily have to be.

By developing a SERVPRO® Emergency READY Profile for your business, you minimize business interruption by having an immediate plan of action. Knowing what to do and what to expect in advance is the key to timely mitigation and can help minimize how water and fire damage can affect your business.

EMERGENCY READY PROGRAM

  • A no-cost assessment of your facility. This means there is no need to allocate funds, giving you a great value at no cost.
  • A concise Profile Document that contains only the critical information needed in the event of an emergency. It will only take a little time to complete and will not take you away from current projects. But it will save a lot of time if ever needed.
  • A guide to help you get back into your building following a disaster. This can help minimize the amount of time your business is inactive by having an immediate plan of action.
  • Establishes your local SERVPRO® Franchise Professional as your disaster mitigation and restoration provider. You have a provider that is recognized as an industry leader and close by.
  • Identification of the line of command for authorizing work to begin. This saves time so we can begin the work of mitigating the damage which can save you time and money.
  • SERVPRO® is a sponsor of the American Red Cross Ready Rating™ program. A free, web-based program designed to help businesses, organizations and schools become better prepared for emergencies.
  • Provides facility details such as shut-off valve locations, priority areas and priority contact information. Having a quick reference of what to do, how to do it and who to call provides solutions in advance of an emergency so that during the emergency you are “Ready for whatever happens.”

Ready to get started?

Call SERVPRO of North Central Colorado Springs locally owned and operated—so we’re a part of this community too. We are also part of a national network of over 1,700 Franchises, which enables us to respond quicker with more resources. For major storms and disasters, we can call upon special Disaster Recovery Teams strategically located throughout the country.

SERVPRO of North Central Colorado Springs proudly serves Colorado Springs, Fountain, Security-Widefield, Black Forest, Peyton, Calhan, Woodland Park, Ellicott, and all of Elbert and El Paso County. Call us with your mitigation concerns at (719) 266-0881.