Do You Have Mold In Your Home?
Mold in kitchen
If you have an unexplained rusty, green or black stain slowly spreading across your wall or ceiling, it may be mold. Household mold is a microscopic fungus that loves moist environments, such as bathrooms, laundry rooms, and kitchens. A mold infestation can become a health and property-damage risk for your home if you fail to address it promptly.
Mold growth is beneficial in the outdoors, where it helps break down organic substances in soils. When mold finds its way indoors, it can cause serious damage to drywall, wood and other porous surfaces. Though there are thousands of mold species, only a small number are likely to be toxic. Black mold is a variety that may cause health effects to humans and pets and can cause serious damage to your home.
Where Does Mold Usually Grow?
Porous surfaces in high humidity environments are the perfect habitat for mold. Here are some common surfaces and locations where home mold growth occurs:
- On drywall
- On wood
- In carpets
- On books and paper products
- Near a water leak or water damage
- In crawl spaces
- Under sinks
The best way to detect mold is to pay close attention to your senses. What you see and what you smell will help you find a problem before it gets out of hand. A musty odor in a laundry room or bathroom could indicate mold. An unusual stain on a wall or ceiling is often a sign of mold.
What Should You Do if You Suspect Mold?
If you have noticed signs of mold growth in your West Glenn Estates, AZ, home, your best strategy is to have the problem area inspected by a professional mold remediation company. They can test to diagnose the problem and recommend a safe and effective cleanup protocol.
Mold damage occupies a wide spectrum of risk. Some molds may clear up once the high humidity is mitigated. Harmful varieties can be very destructive to your property and structure and can require costly interventions and repairs. Consulting a mold expert is the best way to protect your beloved home from a costly cleanup and restoration process.
3 Ways Fire Restoration Helps Homeowners
Fire damage in Grand Manor, AZ
3 Ways Fire Restoration Helps Homeowners
From 2013-2017, the National Fire Protection Association estimates that approximately 354,400 home fires occurred on average each year, leaving homeowners to tend to the destruction. Such devastation can be emotionally overwhelming. Where do you even begin? Start with contacting a fire restoration company in Grand Manor, AZ, to assist in the recovery. They have the knowledge and tools to put your place back together again.
1. Seek Testing
Once the property has been cleared by fire personnel, call the experts to evaluate water and smoke damage. Don't wait. Allowing anything to linger wastes time and could only further the issues. Many restoration companies work 7 days a week, staffed regularly with appropriate technology to handle your immediate needs. When the crew arrives, they'll survey area and perform any assessments, determining the extent of the trouble.
2. Cover and Dry
The fire restoration team should quickly begin placing tarps and boards over exposed sections, securing the premises from not only the environment but unwanted trespassers. The fire most likely created holes and cracks, exposing your home. You want to prevent rain or wind from creating hazards as well as keep unwanted animals and robbers out. Once the team has taken care of the vulnerable areas, they'll get to work drying out wet zones. The fire crew most likely had to use the hose, dousing the roof and walls with water. If the humidity is allowed to linger, mold could grow. Therefore, industrial dehumidifiers are used to pull the excess moisture back out.
3. Scrub and Repair
Damage cleaning is more than wiping something down. The specialists must sanitize, mend and cleanse. Using high-tech equipment, they clear away the soot and smoke. Then, they'll begin working on fixing any structures or salvaging personal valuables. During this stage, they treat odors and stains. Finally, the building receives attention, patching, painting, and rebuilding until the residence is a back to normal.
Disaster may strike. If it does, allow fire restoration to ease the process. They can evaluate and care for your land.
How To Effectively Prepare for a Disaster
Business preparedness should include a continuity plan
You dread the thought that a large-scale emergency could ever occur in your workplace. Many people will never experience one, but this doesn't mean you shouldn't be ready. Proper preparation can reduce feelings of fear and uneasiness. If something terrible does happen, disaster preparedness will help minimize the damage and help you respond appropriately.
Make a Continuity Plan
An incident such as a fire, flood or massive storm could have severe effects on your business. If you don't have the right procedures in place, you may have to cease operations for a time. This could impact your productivity and people's ability to make a living. Business preparedness should include a continuity plan. This entails:
- Backing up pertinent files on offsite servers or online
- Having plans to allow people to work from home
- Establishing effective communication methods
Have the Right Supplies
When it comes to disaster preparedness in Glendale, AZ, you can't do without certain items. Your office should have plenty of bottled water in reserves. Keep extra batteries and flashlights on hand. Assemble several first aid kits and make them available throughout the building. Keep a few sets of reliable tools handy as well as sanitary supplies for your employees. Warm blankets and towels may also come in handy.
Know How To Evacuate
When you were in school, you probably practiced fire alarm drills. You should do the same in the office. At least once a year, go through the evacuation procedures with your employees. Everyone should know how to get out of the building safely in different types of emergencies. Establish a meeting place away from the building.
Coordinate With Others
Talk to other businesses in the area and combine your efforts in emergency preparedness. Know which organizations to call in the event of different incidents. You should be familiar with local disaster response and cleanup teams too.
Every business needs to know the basics of disaster preparedness. If you don't have a plan, start making one today.
5 Steps of the Water Cleanup Process
Drywall removed after water damage in Peoria, AZ
5 Steps of the Water Cleanup Process
A pipe burst in your home in Peoria, AZ, can leave you with a big mess. One of the first things you need to do when this happens is call the professionals. Your plumber and water cleanup specialists can help you get your home back to normal in five basic steps.
1. Tear Out Damaged Materials
The first thing technicians have to do is remove materials that bar access to the broken pipe, need to be restored or just aren't salvageable:
- Wall blocking the broken water line
- Saturated drywall and flooring
- Ruined carpets
- Soggy ceiling tiles
- Waterlogged belongings
2. Remove Excess Water
Flooding from a broken pipe can spill a lot of water into your home in a short amount of time. Technicians may have to extract standing water with industrial pumps to clear the space.
3. Dry the Remaining Structure
After the major damage has been removed, the remaining area is probably still wet from the pipe burst. Specialists dry the area as quickly as possible to prevent secondary damage such as mold growth. If the air in your home is particularly moist, they can also bring in a dehumidifier to bring humidity back to acceptable levels.
4. Restore Damaged Items
Your personal belongings that got caught in the flood may be able to be restored. Documents, pictures, electronic equipment, and furniture can often be fixed, even if they have a little water damage. After they are tried, technicians can determine whether they need to be repaired or thrown out.
5. Rebuild Structure
The last step of the restoration process is making your home look like new again. Restoration experts can make it look "Like it never even happened," by rebuilding walls and replacing flooring to match what is already there.
No homeowner wants to have a pipe burst in the house. If it happens, though, it is helpful to know what the restoration process is going to look like.
Disaster Preparedness Basics for Your Business
Prepare a disaster kit with first aid for your business in case of an emergency
When a fire or flood threatens your building, you could be vulnerable to significant property damage. Severe weather events can quickly create emergency conditions. Formulating an emergency response plan for your company may help you avoid costly restoration due to a severe weather disaster.
When your business is disrupted by an emergency event, it takes time and costs money to return operations to normal. Developing a business continuity plan will help prepare your property and staff for a disaster and minimize lost revenue and profits. A BCP is a detailed emergency strategy that includes three primary elements:
- Conducting a business impact analysis can help you identify the potential effect a disruption may have on your corporate functions and processes.
- Selecting and training a business continuity team will establish a core group that is ready to activate your emergency response plan.
- Developing the systems needed for operating through an emergency disruption will enable your staff to quickly assume their continuity team roles and keep your business functioning.
A good business continuity plan is a detailed document that requires time and research to develop. Disaster preparedness websites and disaster remediation services generally provide detailed guides for creating BCPs.
Emergency Readiness Basics
While a BCP is crucial for addressing emergency conditions, a few common-sense basics should be in place at all times. Consider registering with local emergency notification services and preparing a disaster kit with first aid, water, food, flashlights, and batteries. Posting emergency contact information and a map with evacuation routes clearly marked are simple solutions that can be invaluable during a chaotic time.
If you have experienced an emergency disruption to your Weedville, AZ, business, you know how stressful and costly disaster remediation can be. A business continuity plan is your best chance for minimizing your losses. Understanding the elements of emergency preparedness and business continuity may help streamline the cleanup and recovery process should you experience a disruption.
What To Do First If Your Basement Floods
Basement flooding in Glendale, AZ
Initials Steps to Take if Your Business Has a Basement Flood
Water seeks the lowest possible level. When a sump pump fails or floodwater enters your business, the basement is vulnerable to water damage. If your Glendale, AZ, business has a basement flood, you may benefit from this overview of the initial steps to take.
Before people or animals contact the floodwater, it’s important to safely disconnect your electrical power. If the panel is inaccessible, you can call the power company or a flood restoration service to assist you.
When the electrical has been disconnected, consider the following precautions before entering the flooded area:
- Wearing protective gloves, boots, and coveralls can prevent injuries.
- Closing the area to pets and children will protect them from potential danger.
- Placing fans and opening windows in the area will begin drying out the wet surfaces and help prevent mold growth.
These basement flood precautions will help ensure you are safe while assessing the damage and beginning the cleanup.
Develop a Cleanup Strategy
It’s important to assess your level of damage. When floodwater enters your business at ground level or below, it is considered extremely contaminated. It can contain sewage and chemical contaminants. If you have more than an inch or two of pooled water, it is recommended you consult with a water damage expert.
You can begin removing wet items and placing them in a garage or other drying area if your basement flood is very shallow. Wearing protective gear, use a wet vacuum to extract the water. You may need to power the equipment from a neighbor’s electricity or a generator.
Consult Your Insurance Agent
With cleanup underway, it is smart to contact your insurance agent. If you have flood insurance coverage, you should be able to file a claim for cleanup and restoration costs.
A flooded basement can feel overwhelming for a business owner and the staff. After addressing safety, you can assess your cleanup options based on the contamination level. Flood cleanup can be a long, time-consuming process for your company. The sooner you consult an expert and get the process started, the sooner your company will be back to business as usual.
Understanding Commercial Insurance and Mold Damage
Black mold damage on wall in West Glenn Estates, AZ
You don't want to think about it, but eventually, chances are good that some type of incident will affect part of your office building. Disasters such as floods, fires and high winds can inflict severe damage in the workplace. Mold is another common culprit that people in West Glenn Estates, AZ, encounter. You're glad you have commercial insurance; however, your policy may or may not cover the cost to clean up the mold and replace ruined materials.
When You Should Have Coverage
You purchased commercial insurance for situations such as mold growth and the issues it can cause. You can expect your provider to accept and pay on your claim where the appearance of mold comes due to the following:
- Unexpected events such as a burst pipe under a sink or in the ceiling or walls
- Sudden appliance failure such as a ruptured water heater or a defective dishwasher
- Water left behind in the office after firefighters put out a fire
Be aware that even if your insurance provider accepts your claim, it may not pay the full amount to cover the mold damage. Many policies have coverage limits that don't add up to the full cleanup amount. Paying a professional mold removal company to eliminate mold and replace building materials can cost tens of thousands of dollars. Check with your insurance agent and ask about your policy maximum.
Don't Expect Help
Routine inspections and maintenance of your building's HVAC and plumbing systems are vital. You should also regularly assess the integrity of the roof, foundation and other areas where water could infiltrate the facility. If mold growth starts because you neglected these duties, your insurance agent will deny your claim. You could, however, purchase mold insurance to help you with the repair and cleanup costs.
Commercial insurance can give you peace of mind after a disaster. If you do your part to prevent mold, you shouldn't have to wonder whether your plan will cover any future cleanup and remediation needs.
Category 1 Water Does Not Mean Category 1 Water Damage
Any broken pipe or supply line in commercial buildings in Peoria, AZ can lead to severe water damage. Experts in commercial restoration know that no two water damages are alike; a lot depends on the category of water involved. If you’re dealing with water damage due to category 1 water, you are exposed to sanitary water. Clean water does not pose a substantial risk to your health. What is category 1 water exactly, and what damage can it cause?
1. What Is Category 1 Water?
Category 1 water starts from a sanitary source. Examples for sanitary sources are faucets, toilet tanks, and drinking fountains. Water that falls into this category poses minimal risk of exposure through inhalation, skin, or oral consumption. Nevertheless, be advised that this water can turn into unsanitary water based on time and temperature. Just because it’s category 1 water doesn’t mean that it cannot cause extensive damage. Clean water can cause four types of water damage.
2. What Are the Main Types of Water Damage?
Class 1 is the easiest to deal with as only small amounts of water are involved. Absorption and evaporation are minimal issues. The damage is limited to one room or one specific area. Carpet is only slightly or not affected at all, and only materials with low porosity have absorbed water.
Class 2 damage is characterized by larger amounts of water and a higher evaporation rate. At least all the carpet in a room is affected and walls are soaked in water up to 24 inches. The structure and substructure have absorbed moisture.
Class 3 water damage means that enough water has filled the area to be evaporated into or absorbed by everything in the room. It’s not uncommon that the water comes from overhead. Walls, insulation, ceilings, carpets, and sub-floors are saturated.
Specialty drying situations fall into class 4. Enough time has passed for water to affect materials with low porosity, including brick and concrete.
Clean water might be sanitary but it can be responsible for extensive damage. As soon as you notice a broken pipe or supply line, it’s important to take action.
3 Essential Elements of Business Fire Preparedness
Working smoke alarms are your best defense against a business fire
3 Essential Elements of Business Fire Preparedness
A fire can cause serious damage to business property. It’s hard to imagine having a fire in your Grand Manor, AZ, business, but it’s important to be prepared. Creating a fire prevention plan or bolstering an existing one can significantly reduce your risk of serious fire damage. This discussion may help you formulate the best plan for your situation.
1. Smoke Alarms
Working smoke alarms are your best defense against a business fire. They will detect the problem and loudly notify you. If your alarms are malfunctioning, they may fail to protect you. Consider the following seasonal maintenance practices for your smoke alarms:
- Testing each alarm monthly to confirm proper warning siren operation
- Replacing the batteries every 6-9 months or obtaining a unit with a permanent 10-year battery
- Carefully vacuuming the alarm openings to remove any dust or cobwebs
It’s important to stay current with alarm inspection and maintenance. Only a working alarm can alert you to call emergency services before you incur extensive damage.
2. Evacuation Plan
It’s important to prepare your staff for a business fire by having a fire safety meeting. The goal is an emergency escape plan that will facilitate evacuation from your building. Your local fire restoration specialist will generally be glad to visit your business and help you formulate the best plan for your unique situation.
Start with walking the building with your staff, identifying the best evacuation route for each office and room. Storing escape ladders in upper-floor offices will facilitate window evacuation, and having fire drills once or twice a year will keep your staff familiarized with the plan.
3. Fire Extinguishers
You will undoubtedly be grateful for a few well-placed fire extinguishers if you have a business fire. If your building is very large, your local fire specialist can recommend the best number and placement for your situation. Make sure your staff is familiar with fire extinguisher operation.
Proper fire preparation is easy to neglect, considering the demands of everyday business operations. Taking the time to implement a good plan can save lives and property. It could be the difference between a little smoke damage and complete property destruction.
4 Facts About Black Water
The most serious situation is Category 3 or black water
4 Facts About Black Water
If your business in Peoria, AZ, has experienced any flooding, you will need to assess the type of water damage that has occurred. Water that comes from a safe source such as an overflowing faucet is considered clean and is labeled Category 1. Water that may contain bacteria and comes from a known source such as a dishwasher or washing machine is considered Category 2. The most serious situation is Category 3 or black water.
1. It Can Potentially Cause Harm
Category 3 water contains certain chemicals, sewage, or microbes. If accidentally consumed this type of water can cause extreme harm or even death. Illnesses such as E-coli or campylobacteriosis can be spread through human waste. People may even experience respiratory effects if exposed to airborne endotoxins released by the bacteria.
2. It Can Come From Outside Your Business
While many people know that overflowing toilet water with feces is unsafe to come in contact with, water damage caused by outside sources such as an overflowing river or seawater is also considered Category 3. This is because there is a wide variety of harmful substances or chemicals from outdoors that can have dirtied the water.
3. Clean Water Can Turn Into Black Water
If your business experiences a flood but the water is only Category 1 or 2 water, you still need to act as quickly as possible. Depending on the situation, it can degrade into Category 3 in three days or less.
4. It Needs To Be Professionally Cleaned
You should never attempt to clean Category 3 water on your own. To ensure the area is completely sanitized and that no harm comes to anyone in the building, you should immediately get in contact with a water damage restoration company.
If your business is ever flooded due to a sewage backup or outside source, it is imperative that you act quickly. Never try to clean the black water yourself. Instead, evacuate the area and get professional assistance right away.