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What Are the Standards for Commercial Mold Cleaning?

1/7/2020 (Permalink)

Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification SERVPRO is certified with the IICRC for water, fire, and mold damage.

What Are the Standards for Commercial Mold Cleaning?

Are there mold standards for professional cleanup? What does the government say is required for a building to be deemed sanitized? The United States Department of Labor does have an established guideline, dictating protocols for both commercial and residential property. If your business in Aventura, FL, is impacted by fungus growth, look over the safety manual and guidelines supported by the following organizations: EPA, OSHA, and IICRC. In addition, speak with a mold remediation company about how to get your establishment back up and running. You should witness the following steps.

1. Identify the Affected Regions

When a crew arrives, the workers must determine the origin of the problem as well as the extent of mold clean up. This may require testing, especially if the growth is not visible. The initial issue needs repair first. Then, allow experts to isolate the polluted area, preventing it from spreading. Do not permit employees into the space. In fact, the team should establish a boundary, trapping air into a certain location and preventing others from dragging spores into other rooms.

2. Prioritize Pollution Removal

The mold standards emphasize tearing out contamination above using cleaners. Sprays may be used to kill microbes; however, biocides such as bleach do not penetrate the porous substances, making it hard to determine whether fungus has truly been killed completely. Impacted structures such as carpet pads, drywall, and baseboards absorb moisture; thus, they should be thrown away and replaced with something new.

3. Use Industrial Equipment

Black mold decomposes, chewing away at wood and other organic matter. If it's missed, it could mean the structural integrity could be compromised. When your workers arrive, they should begin to remove moisture, cutting off the mold's source. The air handler isn't sufficient. Dehumidifiers should be used.
Yes, there are mold standards. Before you begin work on your establishment, look them over and speak with experts about how they intend to clean your place.

How To Salvage Electronics After a Fire

12/31/2019 (Permalink)

ic or chip in circuit board fire burn How to salvage electronics after a fire

How To Salvage Electronics After a Fire

Following an electrical fire in your Hollywood, FL, office building, you may be wondering if the blaze harmed your other electronics. You also may have to deal with water damage from the sprinkler system or hoses used to douse the flames.
Smoke damage is common after a fire, as well. Smoke can actually affect electronics in several different ways. Specifically, smoke:

  • Adds a magnetic charge
  • Leaves behind acidic soot
  • Produces black film

How Smoke Harms Electronics

Each of the above actions affects electronics in different ways. The magnetic charge present in smoke can short-circuit various devices, including computers and televisions. Meanwhile, the acidic soot created by smoke may cause your electronics to break down more quickly.
Black film may also form on interior parts of smoke-damaged items. This may make electronics overheat more frequently, which can shorten their lifespan.

How To Clean Electronics

If your building suffers an electrical fire, you should immediately contact your local emergency restoration services company. Experts will have the best tools for salvaging your belongings.
In the meantime, there are steps you can take to mitigate the smoke, water and fire damage to your electronics. Your computer hard drive should be removed so you can transfer its contents to another device. The professional cleaners can then work on saving the rest of the computer. You should also turn off and unplug any televisions in the building.

How To Clean Appliances

You probably have appliances in your commercial space, as well. Any microwaves or toasters in the kitchen should also be powered off and unplugged before the professionals arrive. You should also check your warranty records to see what damage is covered.
Computer cleanup after an electrical fire can be a complex process. While you can take some steps on your own to limit the damage, your best bet is to call in the restoration experts.

3 Surprising Types of Storm Damage

12/17/2019 (Permalink)

A kitchen wall covered with mold Mold damage in Hollywood, FL

Mention storm damage and the average homeowner’s thoughts immediately go to downed tree limbs and the like. But storm damage can include more things, from burst pipes to standing water. Knowing all the risks can help you prepare your Hollywood, FL, home for the worst. Here are three surprising types of storm damage - are you prepared?

What Causes Storm Damage?

Physical storm damage can result from many factors, depending on the type of storm. But the bigger cause of damage is often failure to prepare. Some ways homeowners fail include the following:

  • Not securing property debris
  • Not replacing old exterior elements, like windows
  • Not replacing aging interior elements, like pipes

Burst Pipes
Pipes typically burst due to cycles of freezing and thawing. Ice forms due to low temperatures, and frozen pipes expand. One or several episodes of this following a winter storm weakens the pipe, leading it to burst. Prevent this by insulating your pipes in advance.

Roof Damage
Wind and even hail can cause major roof problems. Gusts lift shingles, while hail dents and dings them. Both can create openings that let water inside, setting the stage for new problems. Inspect your roof annually and cover holes with heavy-duty tarp.

Mold
Few homeowners associate this common household problem with a storm, but a storm can be what initiates it. Water can get into your home via a pipe burst or roof damage, creating the perfect moist environment for mold to thrive. Prevention can involve the previous tips for pipes, as well as caulking up holes in your home that could let in rising waters during a storm.
Be it a burst pipe or a broken window, storm damage can create high bills that your homeowner’s insurance may not cover. Prepare in advance using these tips from your local water cleanup expert and you’ll be ready for whatever the storm brings.

Understanding Contaminated Water Types

12/5/2019 (Permalink)

Protection and housing Clean water is the least problematic type, it could be from roof leaks

All water isn’t the same, and that becomes most apparent when you’re dealing with the aftermath of a flood. Floods are notorious for leaving bacteria-laden, contaminated water. Understanding the different types of water contamination can help you understand how to approach flood damage in your Hollywood Lakes, FL, home.

Different Contamination Sources

Water may all be comprised of the same chemical elements, but it doesn’t all come from the same place. Water can be contaminated by everything from agricultural pollution and factory waste to oil or human waste. Once contaminated, water can spread diseases like cholera, dysentery and more. The level of contamination determines which category water falls into:

  • Clean water
  • Gray water
  • Black water

Clean Water

Clean water is the least problematic type. Typically sourced from roof leaks, tub overflows, appliance malfunction and similar sources, this water doesn’t have contact with human or animal feces. While this water can cause mold and mildew damage, it doesn’t pose a threat of disease.

Gray Water

The second type of water, gray water, is in the middle of the spectrum. Not quite clean, but not terribly dirty, this water is best described as mildly contaminated. Sourced from sump pump failures, toilets or dishwasher supply lines, this type of water contains a mild level of contaminants. If not properly removed, it runs the risk of progressing to black water.

Black Water

This water is at the top of the list of contaminated water, and for good reason. This water is often contaminated with hepatitis, cryptosporidiosis and worse. It usually comes from toilets, and has made contact with human feces or sewage.
The type of water left in your home after a flood can directly influence your flood damage cleanup plan. Understand different contaminated water types and consult with a water damage specialist to form the best plan for how to remove each of them safely.

Effective Ways to Assess Mold Damage

12/2/2019 (Permalink)

Assessing mold damage With the right approach and help, you can clean up the mold and feel good at staying in your house.

As a homeowner, you expect to make repairs and improvements from time to time. You know things will break and that systems will wear down and fail. However, you never want to discover mold. Unfortunately, many people confront this issue and look for the right mold assessment to know how to move forward. 


Where Mold Grows


Microscopic mold spores are always present inside and outside your home. It can find its way indoors through openings in the structure such as windows, doors and other gaps. The fungus may also come in with people and animals entering the house. In damp and humid areas of the house, black mold can quickly grow and be visible. Some common places include:

On shower walls
behind or at the base of toilets
On food in the refrigerator or cupboards
On walls

Determining Mold Levels


If you see issues such as mildew or leaky pipes, mold might not be far behind. An environmental hygienist can help assess the situation. These professionals not only come up with safety guidelines in buildings, but they can also recommend proper cleaning procedures. An environmental hygienist may also analyze a home mold test and deliver the results. The hygienist can tell you what type of mold is present and how fast it is growing.


Certified Mold Specialist


This professional has expert training and experience in examining black mold and other forms of the fungus. The specialist may work with a professional mold remediation company to help develop a plan to get mold levels under control. This professional can not only detect the presence of mold but will be able to determine its growth source.


If you are worried about mold growing in your house, professional assistance is available. Don't try to handle this on your own.

Why Should I Board Up My Home After a Fire?

11/27/2019 (Permalink)

Window boarded up It’s important to board up your home right away to avoid additional damage to both the structure and your finances.

If you’ve experienced a residential fire, you know that the immediate aftermath can be devastating. Your home suddenly becomes vulnerable to all types of extraneous elements. Meanwhile, your family might be displaced for weeks or even months until the fire damage is repaired. The sooner you take action, the less risk you have of:


1. Additional Damage
Doors and windows can be destroyed by fire, leaving the home open to all types of intruders, including vandals, animals and weather. A damaged house that appears to be abandoned is considered by some people to be an open invitation to trespass; it’s a pretty safe bet that they’ll be up to no good. Animals might see the house as an opportunity to look for food and shelter. Additionally, any open areas can be susceptible to the ever-changing outdoor conditions such as freezing temperatures, rain and wind.


2. Additional Loss of Property
When you board up your home it makes it much more difficult for potential burglars to gain access. Instead of going in through a window or door, they would have to pry up boards, requiring more time and energy than they might want to invest.


3. Loss of Insurance Coverage
After a disaster, it’s your responsibility to take every measure possible to protect your property from further damage. Most insurance policies have certain requirements such as an emergency board up of a damaged structure. If this action isn’t taken, the insurance company might refuse to pay some or all of the claim.


4. Liability
Even if someone who isn’t authorized to be on your property (especially a child) trespasses and gets injured, you could be liable for their injuries.
Choosing to board up after a house fire means that your home will be safe from the elements so that the restoration process will go as smoothly as possible. Be sure to call fire cleanup professionals to get your home back up to code as soon as possible.

When the Sump Pump Fails

11/12/2019 (Permalink)

Installation of a new sump pump and the removal of the old obsolete rusty one with a high angle view of the pumps. Your pump needs routine maintenance, such as regular inspections, cleaning, and minor repairs

When the Sump Pump Fails

Flood cleanup equipment, such as a sump pump, tends to be machinery you need, without fail, when an emergency arises at your Hallandale, FL, property. During heavy rains, it's particularly important for the pump to be working, especially if you live in an area where the water table is high, or the soil drains poorly. Your basement or crawl space could be at risk if the pump fails for any reason:

  • Excess water can lead to mold or mildew growth.
  • Basement flooding can negatively impact the home's foundation.
  • Any building materials and belongings could be damaged.


Unfortunately, from time to time, a pump doesn't activate when it should. When this happens, you need another solution.

Prevent Water Damage

Even a small amount of water or moisture in the crawl space can lead to mold growth or standing water that rots the beams or posts of the structure. When your existing pump equipment isn't working appropriately, you can begin by mopping up the water you can reach. If the water is deep, you may need to use a bucket to bail as you wait for water damage professionals to arrive. Remember to move the water at least 20 feet away from the home.

Pump Out More Than Water

When professionals get to your home, they may use a trash pump and a truck mount to tackle the remaining mess. This type of equipment can handle solids and debris that your sump pump may not have handled well. The truck mounting increases the stability of the machinery and makes it easier to transport to flooded locations.

Professional Machinery for Major Disasters

Your pump needs routine maintenance, such as regular inspections, cleaning, and minor repairs. Refer to your owner's manual for the specific maintenance needed. In the event that your pump isn't working correctly or just isn't enough to handle the type of debris in your Hallandale, FL, basement or crawlspace, a trash pump and professional equipment may be the answer.

Common Causes of Hotel Water Damage

10/29/2019 (Permalink)

Water damage in bedroom At SERVPRO, we are dedicated to providing expert commercial building restoration services for hotel water damages of all kinds.

Maintaining a hotel property is an important, yet often daunting task. From keeping guests happy to keeping all of the day-to-day functions of the hotel operating smoothly, running a hotel efficiently is imperative to keeping business afloat and successful. When it comes to the upkeep of a hotel property, water damage is one of the most challenging issues to overcome. With thousands of people coming in and out of a hotel and using its amenities, even the slightest of water damage can become a huge setback. Issues like flooring damage and electrical wiring damage can be costly in a variety of ways.

Not only does the hotel need to handle the costs of water damage restoration, but they must also deal with the potential lost income of closing down or reducing the number of available rooms during the repairs. In addition to dealing with damages to the actual hotel, hotel staff must also consider the issue of damaged personal belongings of their guests. Keep in mind the following common causes of water damage in hotels:

  • Overflowing bathtub or bathroom sink
  • Toilet leaks
  • AC unit overflow
  • Water heater leaks
  • Broken shower drain
  • Sewer line back ups

The consequences of hotel water damage are far-reaching, especially when not handled immediately. Something that may start as a simple carpet repair can turn into ceiling damage below, electrical wiring issues, mold growth and more. As such, hiring a trustworthy, professional hotel water damage repair and restoration team is imperative. At SERVPRO, we are dedicated to providing expert commercial building restoration services for hotel water damages of all kinds. Contact our hotel water damage recovery team today to learn more!

Basic Water Supply Line Know-How

10/23/2019 (Permalink)

pvc pipe for water piping system PVC pipe for water piping system in Golden Beach, FL

Basic Water Supply Line Know-How

At the very least, a homeowner should know what type of equipment they are working with in their bathroom. How else would you know how or when to maintain it? If you suffer supply line damage in Golden Beach, FL, the specific type of line you have could determine your warranty and the procedure moving forward.

Plastic

There are two types of plastic pipes: CPVC or PEX. CPVC is not looked upon favorable in the industry, and only has a 5-8 year warranty. It cracks easily in a freeze and uses glued fittings, making it susceptible to bathroom leak. On the other hand, PEX has a 25 year warranty. It is a relatively new material for pipes, so it isn't well known how water will effect it after 40 years. PEX offers several benefits, and is quickly gaining confidence in the plumbing world. It is:

  • Relatively inexpensive
  • Installs quickly
  • Very flexible

Braided Steel

Braided steel supply lines are the latest development in plumbing technology. They are known for lasting an incredibly long time and are extremely hardy, so they usually come with a lifetime warranty. Essentially, the line is a rubber tube enclosed by a braided steel jacket. This makes it very flexible, so these lines are also good for small spaces. Braided lines rarely suffer supply line damage.

Flexible Copper

Copper used to be the industry standard, but has recently fallen out of favor as the preferred pipe material. According to plumbers, it's usually good for about 40 years if it doesn't suffer any acute damage. The pipes are moderately flexible, and are usually shaped during installation and then secured to a surface with a coupling nut. However, copper is notoriously soft, and known to suffer a supply line leak easily. Copper is also easily effected by other metals and substances that come into contact with it.
Supply line damage is a common household issue, so know your pipes and keep track of your warranty in case it happens to you. You may even consider evaluating and upgrading your line before the worst happens.

3 Areas To Check for Hail Damage

10/23/2019 (Permalink)

Missing roof shingles If your roof is shingled, then this is one of the first places to look for hail damage

Types Of Damage That Hail Can Cause

Inclement weather can bring a lot of trouble for your Royal Poinciana, FL, business. When the conditions are right for hail to form, your building may sustain a considerable amount of storm damage. Thunderstorms may be fun to experience from time to time, but the hail damage they can bring can be quite devastating. If you have experienced roof damage from a storm, then you are probably wondering what the extent is and how to identify it. Learn about some common types of damage that hail can cause.

Shingles

If your roof is shingled, then this is one of the first places to look for hail damage. Whether your shingles are composition or single material, they can be damaged by forceful storms. Damaged shingles look different based on their material. If you have asphalt or composition shingles, for example, look for areas that are soft to the touch and black. Wood shingles often split, so look for cracks with sharp edges and an orange-brown color. Storms can also rip shingles off completely, so check for missing shingles.

Insulation

Roof damage can go deeper than the exterior of the building. Hail can puncture your roof and give way to leaks. If the hail is strong enough, it could even puncture your roof's insulation. The hail can create cracks that leak and lead to wet insulation. Wet insulation becomes less efficient as moisture degrades it.

Attics

Hail damage from severe storms can trap water in your building's attic. Water that seeps into your attic can create mold and structural problems. If your roof has been hit by hail and now suffers from water damage, you should contact commercial water damage restoration professionals to mitigate the damage as soon as possible.
After a storm, you may be unsure how to get your business back up and running. Roof damage from hail can feel overwhelming, but taking action quickly can get you back on track quickly and safely.