Recent Commercial Posts
Sourcing by Smell: How To Find Mold
Mold smell may be unpleasant.
It’s unmistakable, it’s musty, it’s overpowering, and it’s proven impossible to pinpoint: It’s a mold smell. When your Old Town Riverside, CA, business has been overtaken by the malodourous sensation, it’s a sure sign of mold growth – but where? Using the five common senses and some modern technology, you can pinpoint the location and perform remediation to leave the building safe, clean, and odor-free (at least from a fungus smell).
Using the Five Senses
While all senses can affirm the presence of mold, only a few should be utilized to confront the growth. After assuming its presence due to the suspicious mildew smell, it can be frustrating to not see any visible signs of growth. Keep in mind that mold may be invisible to the human eye because it develops in dark, moist places:
- Behind walls
- Underneath carpet or floorboards
- Inside heating and ventilation ducts
Following the mold smell should lead you to an area where it is most pungent, even if that may be the ceiling or an interior wall. From there, it is important to protect the other three senses by limiting exposure to the infected area.
The sooner the mold problem is remediated, the sooner business can return to normal operation. A mold remediation team can utilize infrared cameras to check for mold growth in the areas invisible to regular sight:
- Infrared cameras can cover large areas in a short amount of time, efficiently identifying the growth and allowing remediation to begin sooner.
- Images of heat radiation can identify areas of moisture (a necessary element for mold growth).
- Temperature gauges can also be read, identifying areas that may be encouraging spores to develop.
Once the location has been identified, pictures can be taken to measure the impacted area and present options for remediation. Mold smell may be unpleasant but is a key indicator of its even more unpleasant source. Follow your nose, and call the pros!
Keep Your Business Operational During a Power Outage
Buy a portable generator and make sure you get one that is strong.
A big storm in Beaumont, CA, can shut your business down for days, maybe even weeks. A power outage will shut down computers, affect security systems, shut off refrigeration capability and turn your building dark. It's always a good idea to have a backup plan and to prepare for the worst. Business interruption insurance can reduce the impact on your company's bottom line. Contact with a local storm remediation team allows you to get to work on recovery in a matter of hours. Anything you can do to minimize the scope of storm damage is time and money well spent.
The Importance of Keeping Your Business Going
With some forethought and consultation with experts, a power outage can be handled with some grace and style. Consider these steps to protect your business from a major storm:
- Install an uninterrupted power supply source for all computers; this allows the computer to run on battery power and at least allows time for saving critical files.
- Make use of the pervasiveness of WiFi; this enables you to use your phone for emergency communications.
- Buy a portable generator and make sure you get one that is strong enough to power up critical systems such as computers or refrigeration.
Keeping part of your business going is better than having everything shut down. A good plan may still allow you to service customers, keep employees occupied and save vital inventory.
The Value of a Plan
There are many facets to a storm preparedness plan. It's not something you can make up under pressure. Some things to consider include making sure your insurance protection is current and will cover losses. Employees can be a big asset if they are trained in what steps to take during a power outage. Knowledgeable employees will also increase the safety of customers. Finally, make sure you have a plan in place to speed up the storm damage recovery process.
How To Tackle a Clogged or Slow Drain
A clogged drain can lead to all kinds of problems.
A clogged drain can lead to all kinds of problems for your business in Yucaipa, CA. As soon as you discover a slow drain, it is necessary to intervene and prevent costly consequences.
What Can Cause a Clog?
Sinks and toilets at your business that drain slowly indicate that something is stuck somewhere in the plumbing system:
- Food falling down the sink drain after washing dishes
- Hair collecting in a sink drain
- Paper towels, personal care items and other objects getting flushed down a toilet
- Soap scum building up in drains
Ultimately, anything except water can contribute to a clog and other plumbing problems, but there are various ways to deal with something trapped in a drainpipe.
What Are the Best Ways To Troubleshoot a Clogged Drain?
Plumbing clogs at your business are inevitable, but you can troubleshoot them to determine their severity. For sinks, you can start by removing the drain stopper. Debris that becomes entangled on the stopper can interrupt the water flow, but removing the litter often helps. If this does not work, the clog may be deeper within the drainpipe and require a plunger to access it.
Toilet clogs can be frustrating because they usually involve exposure to waste. Flushing anything other than quickly dissolvable waste and toilet tissue can plug a toilet. Plunging helps use the water in the bowl to wash over the clog and release anything that becomes stuck.
When Should You Call a Plumber?
If you cannot eliminate a clog quickly, you may need a plumber to diagnose and repair the problem. Sometimes treating a clog or slow drain is as simple as using the appropriate tools and techniques, but you may discover that you have a more intricate issue.
If a clogged drain causes a flood at your business in Yucaipa, CA, or a fire or other calamity strikes your commercial property, a local disaster restoration service can handle the clean-up and help get your business running smoothly again.
3 Locations Mold Might Hide in Your Commercial Building
Mold growth in Calimesa, CA
Three Locations Where Mold Can Hide
When you own a Calimesa, CA, commercial property, there are many actions you can take to protect it. However, one factor you might not consider is the presence of damaging mold. Many types of fungi, including black mold, can cause serious damage to your building, even in dry climates, and there are three locations where it might hide.
1. On the Roof
Roof leaks can occur without warning and you may not notice the problem until water damage becomes plainly visible. These leaks can cause mold growth in your building’s attic, which may spread to stored items, such as valuable invoice documents. Having your roof checked annually and remaining aware of any moisture can prevent these issues.
2. In Restrooms
If your business is located in an arid state, this does not mean you need not worry about needing professional mold cleanup services. Some rooms are naturally humid and may be vulnerable to leaks, such as your employee restroom. Leaking toilets, overflowing sinks, and dripping pipes can all cause mold growth, so monitoring the area carefully for black mold and other types of fungi, especially if you discover a leak, can help you pinpoint and manage problems before they begin.
3. HVAC Systems
Because your building’s heating, ventilation and air conditioning ducts are hidden from sight, they may develop mold due to condensation within the system. This may happen if the unit is the wrong size for the building or due to age and wear. A musty odor that occurs when you turn the system on can tip you off to the presence of mold. Calling in a mold remediation and restoration company can resolve this problem, as can scheduling future inspections and cleanings.
Black mold and other types of damaging fungi can have a serious impact on your Calimesa, CA, commercial building. Remaining vigilant and monitoring places where it hides can help you to better protect your investment.
How Fire Sprinklers Protect Your Property
The sprinkler head in your office ceiling is only one small part of your property’s fire system
When you walk through your business, how often do you think about your fire sprinkler system? If you were asked to explain how it works, could you? Knowing how your fire suppression system works can give you peace of mind and help you be ready for any fire-related situation.
How Sprinklers Work
The sprinkler head in your office ceiling is only one small part of your property’s fire system. Behind your ceiling and walls is an intricate piping system that holds pressurized water ready to douse flames. When a fire starts, the heat from the blaze triggers the closest sprinkler head and the system releases water from that particular nozzle. The water goes where it is needed most.
How Sprinklers Do Not Work
There are a lot of misconceptions about fire systems and reliability. The greatest fear business owners have is accidental deployment that could result in a lot of water damage. This rarely happens. Here are some other myths about sprinkler systems that the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) has debunked:
- Any type of smoke will set the system off
- Smoke alarms will activate your sprinkler system
- All of the sprinklers go off at once
- They create more damage than they prevent
While no fire sprinkler system is full-proof, a properly installed and maintained one gives its owner far more protection than problems.
How to Handle Deployed Sprinklers
While the myth about excessive damage is not true, if you do have a fire and your sprinklers go off, there will be water damage. If this happens, you should call a local commercial fire and restoration services company in Riverside, CA, to inspect and help with the damages and fire sprinkler cleanup to get your business back to normal.
Understanding your fire sprinkler system might not seem like a priority, but you need to know how it works to keep it in firefighting shape.
What to Do About a Severe Toilet Overflow
Toilet overflow in Banning, CA
Many people have dealt with a toilet overflow, whether at work or home. While not a pleasant event, most of these situations aren't serious and require a quick fix and cleanup effort. However, if there are major issues with the plumbing, and the toilet overflow affects two floors or more in your building, you'll need professional help. Flooding to this degree probably indicates sewer damage and other concerns. Make sure you address this emergency quickly before it becomes a health hazard.
Typical Causes of a Toilet Overflow
While this can be a common problem in Banning, CA, it is not one you will want to see in the workplace. Understanding what leads to a flooded toilet can help you prevent future incidents. You will also be prepared for cleanup and any restoration needs. Here are some common reasons this happens:
- A clog in the toilet or the pipes
- Blocked vents, or pipes that connect to the plumbing fixtures in the building
- Blockage from the main sewer line that runs from the street to your building
Your Response to the Flooding
If a toilet in your building overflows, and water leaks onto the floor and the level below, there are some immediate steps you should follow. You should first shut off the water to the toilet. The supply valve should be on the wall behind the unit. You can also remove the lid and lift the float ball above the waterline. Next, contact the sewage company: flooded toilet, a plumber and a professional flood cleanup company.
Let the Pros Go to Work
You should never try to clean up after sewer damage on your own. Professionals have the right equipment to safely manage the cleanup process. Technicians also have the skill and experience to remove the water, repair the problem that caused the flooding and make your workplace clean and safe again.
Having sewer damage in your building can make it impossible to continue working in the facility. Make sure you follow these steps if you encounter problems.
5 Tips to Prepare Your Building for Spring Flooding
Remember to have your gutters and downspouts clean for spring weather (or spring thaw for cold areas)
Prepare Your Property To Face The Spring Thaw
Spring weather can be quite unpredictable. Seasonal rain storms, rapidly melting snow and countless other conditions can all drastically increase the chances of your commercial building in Calimesa, CA, succumbing to flooding. Luckily, there are several steps you can take to help prepare your property to face the spring thaw.
1. Check the Drainage Systems.
Make sure your outdoor flood drains aren't blocked by any type of obstruction. Clear any debris from the gutters on your building's roof and double-check any floor drains your building might have to ensure that they're unobstructed as well.
2. Remove Any Snow Around the Building.
Rapidly thawing snow is one of the greatest contributors to the spring flood. Remove snow from around your building's foundation and from the top of its roof. Doing so can help the melted water drain away from your property, thus reducing your risk of falling victim to flooding.
3. Test Your Sump Pump.
Ideally, you have been managing and maintaining your sump pump all winter. If you haven't, then testing the device is especially important. Check for a frozen pipe, and make sure to clear any debris out from the machine that could obstruct drainage.
4. Elevate and Waterproof Important Items.
Any important possessions, such as electronics or valuable documents need to be moved to higher floors in your building and sealed in waterproof containers. Preventing water damage is significantly easier than attempting to salvage soaked documents or electronic devices.
5. Hire a Professional to Inspect Your Building's Roof.
If your building's roof has been buried underneath a layer of snow all winter, then it could have potentially sustained damage that you haven't noticed yet. It's a good idea to have your roof professionally inspected to make sure that it's ready to withstand storm and flood damage.
The spring thaw can bring about drastic floods that can cause massive amounts of water damage to your commercial building. Taking the proper precautionary measures can certainly help reduce the amount of damage your building suffers, but complete protection is never a guarantee. Contact flood remediation experts if your property has sustained damage from flooding.
How To Keep Your Business Prepared in Case of a Fire
Have inspections done regularly to catch potential hazards before they become a problem.
It may not be second nature to think about a fire happening in your business, but fire preparation is necessary to keep you and your employees safe and to protect your Banning, CA building. Be sure to take the following steps before you find yourself in an emergency situation.
1. Make Sure You Have Insurance
Paying for fire damage repairs out of pocket can be pricey and can potentially have a negative impact on your business. If you don’t already have insurance that covers this type of damage, consider adding it. Ensure that it covers the following:
2. Maintain Your Fire Alarms
Making sure your fire alarms are working properly is an essential part of fire preparation and should never be overlooked. You should have at least one alarm on each floor, and they should be tested at least once a month.
3. Reduce Fire Hazards
There are many things that can create an increased risk of fire in your building. They can range from overloaded outlets and blocked windows and doors to faulty wiring in the electrical system. Have inspections done regularly to catch potential hazards before they become a problem.
4. Create an Escape Plan
Another important part of disaster preparation is creating an escape plan. Locate all potential exits, including windows on lower floors, and determine multiple exit paths from each area of the building. You should practice the plan at least twice a year. Posting maps in each room of the building can be helpful as well.
5. Make Copies of Important Documents
You probably have many documents, both physical and digital, that are important to your business. Making sure that you have copies of paperwork can help limit the damage if a fire does occur. Make physical copies of paper items, and back up files to external or cloud storage.
Taking the right steps toward fire preparation can help minimize its effects on your business. However, you may still end up dealing with fire or smoke damage. A cleanup and restoration company can perform mitigation and repairs so you can get back to work more quickly.
Simple Tips to Filing a Fire Damage Claim
Fire damage in North Riverside, CA
When you purchased your commercial property insurance, you probably never expected to be the victim of a fire in the office. This emergency could cause widespread damage in the workplace. Without the right plan, you could face some expensive cleanup. Thankfully, once you make a fire claim, you can expect to have the financial help you need to rebuild.
The Right Response
In the immediate aftermath of an office fire, you need to take appropriate steps to ensure you effectively file a fire claim. After safely getting out of the building, make sure you do the following:
- Contact the fire department and other first responders.
- Contact a professional fire remediation company to start the cleanup process.
- Call your insurance agent to report the incident.
After making an initial call to the insurance company, you should collect vital information to share with your agent in a subsequent conversation. If it's safe to re-enter the building, and if authorities allow it, take pictures of the fire damage. If you cannot go inside, coordinate with cleanup technicians to get these photos. You should also document equipment, materials and items that were damaged or lost in the fire. Make sure you are accurate and honest as you furnish this information to the insurance company.
Coordinate With the Cleanup Company
You will work closely with the fire restoration team and your insurance company during the cleanup and rebuilding phase. Once your insurance company approves your claim, it should pay the restoration crew for its services. Communicate often with your agent. Be prepared to answer questions and provide much information as requested. In the meantime, if you have to pay for any repairs before getting your settlement money, keep the receipts and records so you can give these to the insurance company.
Despite your best preparation, you may not be able to prevent a fire in your North Riverside, CA, building. If you have to file a fire claim, follow these guidelines.
How To Address Mold in Your Air Conditioning Ducts
Black mold damage in Riverside, CA
When you think of mold damage in your building, you probably picture large spores lurking on the walls or ceilings. Sometimes, however, the black mold is less obvious. It may be hiding somewhere in your Riverside, CA, commercial property.
Air ducts are a common location for mold. They feed off the dust and moisture that is common in HVAC systems.
Musty odors and black dust near the air vents are signs of a possible mold problem. If the issue is not properly handled, the mold could spread and cause severe harm to your property.
Removing Air Conditioner Mold
Mold thus needs to be addressed immediately. Below are the basic mold cleanup steps:
- Have a certified inspector check the property for mold
- Replace the insulation, if necessary
- Disinfect the ductwork
- Find and address the source of the mold growth
Cleaning black mold improperly can just cause additional damage. Instead, you should use specialists who know how to remove the mold and prevent it from coming back.
Limiting Mold Growth
Because the black mold cleanup process can be costly and time-consuming, you should take steps to prevent an infestation before it starts. That means making sure your property has clean ducts. Bring in a technician at least twice annually to perform maintenance and fix any issues.
Dust and debris within the air conditioning vents can also promote mold growth. You should thus get the filters changed regularly.
There are also steps you can take to limit mold growth in the rest of your building. Be sure to dry wet areas immediately, clean clogged gutters and lower the indoor humidity.
Black mold can damage building materials and temporarily shut down your commercial property. Since mold often grows in damp places, you should regularly clean and inspect your air conditioner ducts. If you see spores or smell an unusual odor, mold remediation specialists can address the problem before it gets worse.