Water and Your Business
When you’re running a business, flood water is the last thing you want to deal with,. However, sometimes it’s unavoidable when bad weather or faulty plumbing strikes. The key to combating flooding is understanding exactly what you’re dealing with before disaster strikes. These are the most important points to remember when it comes to flooding:
• Flood water is considered black water, or a category 3 issue.
• Black water contains a number of threats.
• You require professional help to clean up black water correctly.
Flood waters are rated on a scale depending on the source of the flooding. Clean water comes from burst water lines and other clean sources, gray water results from broken showers and other potentially chemical-carrying sources, and black water results from storm damage and other, potentially more dangerous sources. Understanding which type you’re dealing with is vital when it comes to keeping yourself and your employees safe during floods.
Out of the three categories, black water is the most dangerous by far. Floods resulting from storm damage are considered as a category 3 issue because they tend to carry sewage, chemicals, diseases and bacteria that they pick up from outdoor spaces. Avoiding direct contact with this water is imperative to avoid the transmission of illnesses and other serious issues.
While there are a few steps you can take to reduce the immediate damage of black water in your business, you should never attempt to handle the issue alone and without professional equipment. Allowing a professional cleanup crew to take care of your flooding issue is the best way to promote a safe work environment while getting the results you need to get your business operations back on track.
In the business world, informing yourself about an issue is always important when it comes to making smart decisions. This applies to dealing with emergencies such as flooding in the workplace. Prepare to deal with black water the right way, and never let yourself or your employees be caught off-guard.
Contact SERVPRO of Marshall, Starke, Pulaski and Fulton counties today!
Protect Your Home From Electrical Fires
Electric Fires can cause major damage to your home. Use these tips to help avoid an electrical fire.
A fire in your home can be devastating. Avoid the risk of injury, smoke and property damage by knowing the most common causes of electrical fires:
1. Old Wiring - Did you know that the lifespan of electrical systems in homes is 30-40 years but more than 30% of the nation's homes are more than 50 years old? Signs that your home's wiring may need to be updated include an over-reliance on extension cords and circuit breakers that blow or fuses that need to be replaced constantly. Consult with a reputable electrician to find out what updates your home needs to be safe.
2. Space Heaters - These portable heaters are not designed for long-term use. Portable heating devices should never be placed near combustible surfaces such as clothing, curtains, rugs, bedding or furniture. If you choose to utilize a space heater, look for a model that stays cool to the touch and has a built in automatic shut-off feature in case it is accidentally covered or left on.
3. Old, Outdated Appliances - Never use an appliance that has a worn or frayed cord. Never remove the grounding plug from a cord so that it can be used in a 2 prong outlet. That extra prong is designed to only be used with an outlet that can accommodate the extra electricity that this appliance draws.
Even when taking precautions, electrical fires can occur and have devastating consequences in your home or workplace. If you experience fire or smoke damage, call SERVPRO of Marshall, Starke, Pulaski and Fulton counties at 574-936-5849 day or night to speak with an experienced restoration specialist.
What You Can Do If You Have A Home Fire
Home fires can be devastating
While we all hope we never have to suffer through the experience of a house fire, it is important to know what to do if one should happen. Obviously, the first thing you should do is ensure the fire has been extinguished completely.
This can be done by someone in the home if the fire is small and can be put out easily and safely. Or by the fire department if the fire is too big and dangerous to safely extinguish by the homeowner. It’s important to note that it’s always best to call the fire department right as soon as a fire is spotted and to get everyone out of the home quickly and safely.
The Fire is Out. Now What?
While you may be anxious to start cleaning after a fire, you may be doing more damage than good. Normal household cleaners can be ineffective at removing soot and smoke -- and could even make it worse. It’s best to contact fire damage repair and restoration professionals, like those at SERVPRO of Marshall, Starke, Pulaski and Fulton counties, to get advice on what needs to be done and what not to do.
Fire damage repair and restoration professionals will be able to tell you what can be cleaned, what can be repaired, and what needs to be replaced. They will be able to give you estimates on what services need to be done in order to remove all fire and smoke damage, including smoke odors, from your home.
Airing and Drying Things Out
One of the first things a fire repair company will do is get the smoke and moisture out of the air. This can be done with fans and dehumidifiers. Once the fire is out and you’re allowed to go back inside, you can open some windows near where the fire occurred to help start airing the smoke out of the house.
The other concern is water damage to your carpets and floors. This is usually a result of the fire department extinguishing the fire. If your carpets and floors are wet, it’s important to remove the water and moisture and quickly as possible. If not dried out, carpets and floors can occur further damage from mold and mildew.
Professional fire damage repair companies will usually vacuum out as much water as possible and then use fans and dehumidifiers to dry the carpets and floors out. They may also pull up the carpets to help dry out the padding underneath.
Battling Soot Before It Causes Worse Damage
Soot can be a huge menace to carpets, drapes, and upholstery. It can easily stain fabrics and cause further staining using standard cleaning materials. The soot must be removed before using fabric cleaners. It’s also important to limit traffic across carpet and floors that have soot on it.
Dealing With Smoke Odor In Fabrics
One of the most difficult things to get out of fabrics and porous materials is the smoke odor. Smoke odor can adhere to carpets, dust in air ducts, drapes, and furniture. Normal household cleaners and detergents usually won’t remove all of the smoke odors. To remove the smoke odors many times require special counteractants that are formulated to break up the smoke molecules in the fabrics and materials.
A professional fire repair company will be able to help with that. They will be able to apply these chemical and/or additive counteractants to carpets, fabrics and other porous materials to break up the smoke molecules. Once they are broken up, then they can be professionally cleaned.
Sometimes ozone treatments are needed to break up the smoke molecules and remove the odors. This is usually done with ozone generators which be dangerous if misused. Ozone treatments are another of many tools and treatments that a fire repair company will be able to help with if needed.
Treating Discolored Walls and Ceilings
Removing soot from walls and ceilings is another difficult task that is best left up to a professional. Professional fire damage repair companies will have the right tools and treatments to remove the soot without causing further damage or stains. Many will use special sponges to remove the soot. Others will use non-water based cleaners to remove the soot. Again when dealing with smoke and soot stains on walls and ceilings it’s best to consult a professional fire damage repair company.
Call the Fire Damage Experts for Fast Cleanup and Restoration
When dealing with fire and smoke damage, it’s always best to leave it to the experts at SERVPRO of Marshall, Starke, Pulaski and Fulton counties to handle the cleanup and restoration. The professionals at SERVPRO of Indianapolis West have the expertise and experience to handle home and commercial fire damage. If you should suffer from a fire, contact SERVPRO of Marshall, Starke, Pulaski and Fulton counties online or call them at 574-936-5849.
Commercial Water Damage
Water damage to your Indianapolis business can lead to lots of problems. It can ruin electronics like computers or even worse, cause a short which could lead to a fire. Water can also ruin any porous materials including fabric chairs and couches, carpets, drywall, ceilings, insulation and, wood. If not caught right away and remediated, it can also lead to mold growth that can spread quickly through the air ducts and through the air.
If you do experience water damage to your business, then you want to call the water damage experts at SERVPRO of Marshall, Starke, Pulaski and Fulton counties as soon as possible. When it comes to water damage, the faster you catch it and get it dried up and cleaned up, the better. Even the smallest leak can lead to lots of damage that may be hidden behind ceilings and walls.
Top Causes of Commercial Water Damage & How to Reduce the Risks
Below we will cover the top causes of water damage to businesses. We will also go over how to reduce the risk or at the very least catch the water damage quickly before it gets worse. Hopefully by understanding where water can enter into your building and cause water and mold damage, the better you will be at checking these trouble areas on a regular basis.
Faulty Appliances and Equipment
If your business has appliances and/or equipment that use water, they can develop water leaks that can start small but lead to lots of damage if not caught. These appliances could be dishwashers, sinks, ice machines, water fountains, water heaters, air conditioners, and toilets.
All of these, except for the toilet, tend to leak what is termed clean water. Clean water is water that usually contains no contaminants. While clean water can still cause significant water damage to porous materials, it doesn’t have as high of a risk of fast-growing molds occurring. The water can still mix with contaminants once it starts leaking from the source which usually results in gray water. Gray water can carry bacteria and contaminants that can promote fast mold growth.
To reduce the risk of water leaks from your appliances and equipment, it’s usually a good idea to check all piping, tubes, filters, and other areas that may cause leaking. Also, do a spot check around the appliances and under them for any standing water or water stains.
Leaky and Backed Up Pipes & Drains
Leaks from sewer pipes and backups from drains is also a common cause of water damage to a business. This could be a backed up toilet or a clogged pipes that cause water to back up and escape through the drains. Also common in flood-prone areas is sewer water backing up through floor drains from sewer lines that are at capacity and overflowing.
The water from these sources tends to be gray water or black water. Black water is sewer water that can contain all types of waste particles that may be dangerous to one’s health and can also lead to fast mold growth. This is usually where you will find dangerous black molds occurring. If you experience water damage from black water, it’s important to call the water damage experts at SERVPRO of Marshall, Starke, Pulaski and Fulton counties as soon as possible. Black water can also be found in severe floods.
A leaking roof is common in homes and businesses throughout Indiana. With many businesses, the roof is usually flat. If the drainage for the roof is blocked, water can pool up and cause a roof collapse. Even if the drainage is fine, water can still find its way inside through cracks and damage to the roof membrane, flashing, and damages to seals around pipes and vents.
To reduce the risk of leaks from your roof, it’s a good idea to check the roof every few months for any deteriorating seals or storm damage. If you experience extreme weather like hails or high winds, then you want to check the roof as soon as it is safe to ensure the weather has caused any damages to the roof that may lead to leaks.
Call the Water Damage Experts for Fast Cleanup and Restoration
Sometimes no matter how much care you take to reduce the risk of water damage to your business, it still occurs. If that should happen, it’s important to contact SERVPRO of Marshall, Starke, Pulaski and Fulton counties immediately. Whether it’s a small leak or substantial flooding and water damage to your business, the experts at SERVPRO of Marshall, Starke, Pulaski and Fulton counties can make clean up and restore the damage as if it never happened. You can contact SERVPRO of Marshall, Starke, Pulaski and Fulton counties online or call them at 574-936-5849.
Here at SERVPRO of Marshall, Starke, Pulaski and Fulton counties, we offer a number of commercial restoration services. We thought it would be nice to cover those briefly:
You can have fire or water damage in any kind of structure. We understand the complexities what go along with different buildings. Every different commercial structure brings a different challenge.
SERVPRO of Marshall, Starke, Pulaski and Fulton counties is ready to respond immediately and work quickly to clean or restore your business. We understand that your property’s appearance is important and that every hour spent restoring is an hour of lost productivity. When you need a restoration or cleaning professional, SERVPRO of Marshall, Starke, Pulaski and Fulton counties has the training and expertise to help make it “Like it never even happened.”
- Small Office Buildings
- Large Office/High-Rise Office Buildings
- Apartment Buildings
- Small Retail Stores
- Large Retail/Big-Box Stores
- High-Rise Residential
- Manufacturing & Industrial
If your commercial building needs assistance, please give us a call at 574-936-5849.
Getting Prepared for Spring Rain!
Be prepared for heavy spring rain!
While many of us look forward to the changing season of Spring with the warmer weather and the trees and flowers starting to bloom, there is one part that isn’t so great. Springtime always seems to bring plenty of rain and plenty of rain always brings a higher risk of water damage to your home.
With the increased showers as well as high winds, roof damage can happen or be revealed as water seeps through your roof and damages your ceilings and walls. To reduce the risk of roof leaks, you should inspect your roof for any damages from the winter and inspect it after every major storm.
The most common cause of roof leaks is a damaged or missing shingle from storms or fallen branches. If you do experience water damage inside your home from the ceiling or wall, you will want to contact a professional from SERVPRO to inspect the damage, remove the water, an remediate the damage.
Window & Door Leaks
Another common source of water damage is from old or damaged windows. Water especially from a huge storm can blow into cracks and crevices around your window causing water damage that may not be discovered quickly allowing mold to develop and cause further damage.
Make sure to inspect around your windows and doors for cracks or old caulking that has peeled or cracked off. You can usually caulk any small cracks or crevices to ensure water doesn’t seep into your home causing damage.
Broken Sump Pump
If you have a basement, you understand the importance of a sump pump. Without one water can seep into your basement and cause lots of damage. One of the most common causes of a flooded basement is a sump pump that stopped working.
To prevent this from happening, you can do three things. You can get a backup battery for your sump in case the power goes out. You can get a backup sump pump that is usually set to come on if the water rises above the normal level for your working sump pump. So if your working sump pump either stops working or can’t pump the water out fast enough, you backup will kick in.
The last thing you can do is install a water sensor alarm on the floor near the sump pump. While you may still have some water damage, at least you will be able to catch it fast and have a SERVPRO professional come out to pump out the water and dry out your basement.
If the foundation around the base of your home and the basement walls cracks, water can seep into the basement or crawl space. A sump pump won’t help you since the water is seeping through the walls as opposed to being channeled to the sump pump.
Usually people discover foundation cracks after a big storm or when a gutter is clogged and the water is falling right by your house. Repairing foundation cracks can be a very expensive job depending on the situation but without the repair, there is no way to prevent the water leaking into your basement or crawlspace.
It never hurts to walk around the perimeter of your home checking for any potential foundation cracks as well as checking any bare walls in your basement and/or crawlspace.
Call the Pros of SERVPRO for Water Damage This Spring
If you should suffer water damage whether from Spring weather or a cracked pipe or an overflowing bathtub or toilet, call the water damage cleanup experts at SERVPRO of Marshall, Starke, Pulaski and Fulton Counties at (574) 936-5849 for 24-hour emergency service.
At SERVPRO of Marshall, Starke, Pulaski and Fulton Counties, we have specialized equipment, professional training, and certifications that allow us to restore your home to its pre-water damage condition.
The Damages Water Can Cause
Water Damage in Basement
Do you have a small roof leak or a water spot on the floor where bathwater splashes? While those little leaks and water stains may seem inconsequential, huge damage and potential health risks could be hidden underneath the surface. So what are the signs you should be looking for of further water damage to your Indianapolis home?
If you have a small water stain on your ceiling, you first want to determine where the water came from. If you have access, above the ceiling like an attic, you can get up there and look for signs of a water leak from the roof or a leaking pipe. Even condensation from a pipe can cause water to drip and stain a ceiling over time. The source of the water leak is not always right above the water stain. Water from a leak can travel down the wood framing, across wires, along pipes and other structural pieces behind your home's ceilings and walls.
If you are unable to look behind the wall or ceiling, you may want to call water damage restoration experts like us at SERVPRO of Marshall, Starke, Pulaski and Fulton counties. We have the expertise and tools to examine the full extent of the water damage and determining the best steps to take to repair the water damage and stop any further damage from happening.
Another sign beside a water stain of water damage is a soft spot on your home's walls, ceilings or floors. This happens a lot around bathtubs, kitchen sinks, windows and external walls. While there might not always be a water stain or obvious sign of a water leak, a spot where you can push in on the floor or wall or ceiling can be a sign of water damage that is hidden below the surface. This could be an easy restoration or a potentially difficult one where there could be mold damage and extensive damage to the house's structure.
In any case, the sooner you call us, the faster the damage can be stopped and repaired. When we come to a home with potential water damage, we work quickly to identify the source of the water damage, the areas of the home that have been affected, and the steps to take immediately to stop the water leak and restore the water damaged areas as if nothing ever happened.
While a simple roof leak or water stain can be covered up, the unseen damage that mopping up the water or painting over the water stain can't fix could be even worse and getting worse as time goes by. Don't risk damaging your home from water by ignoring or covering up the problem. Call us immediately so we can find and stop any further damage from happening to your home and to your health.
Be Storm Ready
All roof leaks aren't obvious, make sure you are storm ready with SERVPRO!
When Dealing with Leaks, Take the Following Steps to Minimize Damage:
- Clean up any puddles – standing water will soak in to wood and lead to permanent damage, warping and eventual rot.
- Catch drips – yep, the old bucket under the drip. You want to capture any drips you see so that puddles don’t form
- Find the source of the leak NOW!
- Fix the leak ASAP
The important thing is to find what’s causing the leak. Most rain induced leaks start in the roof. You do NOT want to be climbing around the slippery wet roof during a rainstorm.
Here’s a quick check-list of what to look at when dealing with a roof leak:
- Find where the leak is on the ceiling of the room below. That will lead you to a puddle or soaked insulation in the attic.
- Look for water stains, drip marks, etc. on the rafters above the wet insulation.
- Trace the water up the rafter. It should point right at the leak in the roof.
- Check chimneys where they cut through the roof. Mark the area at the highest point where you see the leak start. This is invaluable for whomever has to fix the leak.
If you do narrow it down to a roof leak, you will need to contact a roofer to fix the leak, and SERVPRO of Marshall, Starke, Pulaski and Fulton counties can handle the water damage.
If you have water damage in your home, give us a call at 574-936-5849 and a technician will come and check it out!
An emergency preparedness kit will help you be prepared for the unexpected.
Between tornadoes and flooding and fires, the amount of natural disasters that have been occurring left and right has been dizzying. While our team here at SERVPRO ofMarshall, Starke, Pulaski and Fulton counties offers free services for businesses to create an Emergency Preparedness Profile, we wanted to highlight important basic items you might need if you and your family happened to be caught in a natural disaster.
You never know when disaster might strike—Don’t let it catch you off guard.
With help from Ready.gov, we were able to compile a list of important things that even can save your life in the event of an emergency. Be sure to remember specific things that your family might need, like medications, epi-pens, and even pet food!
Assembling Your Kit
When you assembler your kit, make sure to store items in airtight plastic bags and keeping everything in plastic bins. This makes them easy to carry, and easily accessible.
A basic emergency supply kit could include the following recommended items:
- Water - one gallon of water per person per day for at least three days, for drinking and sanitation
- Food - at least a three-day supply of non-perishable food
- Battery-powered or hand crank radio and a NOAA Weather Radio with tone alert
- First aid kit
- Extra batteries
- Whistle to signal for help
- Dust mask to help filter contaminated air and plastic sheeting and duct tape to shelter-in-place
- Moist towelettes, garbage bags and plastic ties for personal sanitation
- Wrench or pliers to turn off utilities
- Manual can opener for food
- Local maps
- Cell phone with chargers and a backup battery
Additional Emergency Supplies
Consider adding the following items to your emergency supply kit based on your individual needs:
- Prescription medications
- Non-prescription medications such as pain relievers, anti-diarrhea medication, antacids or laxatives
- Glasses and contact lense solution
- Infant formula, bottles, diapers, wipes, diaper rash cream
- Pet food and extra water for your pet
- Cash or traveler's checks
- Important family documents such as copies of insurance policies, identification and bank account records saved electronically or in a waterproof, portable container
- Sleeping bag or warm blanket for each person
- Complete change of clothing appropriate for your climate and sturdy shoes
- Household chlorine bleach and medicine dropper to disinfect water
- Fire extinguisher
- Matches in a waterproof container
- Feminine supplies and personal hygiene items
- Mess kits, paper cups, plates, paper towels and plastic utensils
- Paper and pencil
- Books, games, puzzles or other activities for children
Maintaining Your Kit
After assembling your kit remember to maintain it so it’s ready when needed:
- Keep canned food in a cool, dry place
- Store boxed food in tightly closed plastic or metal containers
- Replace expired items as needed
- Re-think your needs every year and update your kit as your family’s needs change.
Kit Storage Locations
Since you do not know where you will be when an emergency occurs, prepare supplies for home, work and vehicles.
If you find yourself the victim of disaster, give us a call at 574-936-5849.
If you've been outside lately, you will notice that it is that time of year again...The rainy season! And along with rain comes roof leaks.
Roof leaks can cause all sorts of damage to homes. They can be small, or they can cause large floods.
However they come, if your home suffers water damage from a roof leak, SERVPRO of Marshall, Starke, Pulaski and Fulton counties can restore it.
Many times you don't realize your roof is leaking until a major event happens. Slow leaks can build up over time and become large leaks that become noticeable. It is important to have a professional who can assess the damage and look for signs of secondary damage such as Mold from prolonged leaks over a period of time.
If you suffer water damage from a roof leak give us a call today, we are ready to help. 574-936-5849.