Archived Blog Posts
What to Know About the IICRC
The IIRC is a non- profit organization, that seeks to serve the cleaning and restoration community
Few Details You May Wish to Know About the IICRC
The Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification, also known as the IICRC, is an important organization responsible for setting standards for the property restoration community including those in Washington Township, NJ. Here are a few details about this organization you may wish to know.
1. Who They Are
A non-profit organization, this institute seeks to serve the cleaning and restoration community. There are 15 industry leaders chosen to sit on the board of directors. These professionals help ensure that the organization runs smoothly in a direction that represents the interests and standards of the industry, and help shape the recognized policies.
2. What They Do
The IICRC sets a series of standards recognized by federal, state, and local authorities for the cleaning and restoration industry. These standards are meant to ensure that every job is conducted with the safety of both building occupant and restoration team in mind, and that each project is completed with quality results. This organization also provides education and certificate training.
3. How They Serve
By creating industry standards and providing a mitigation certificate to those individuals trained in these policies through one of the many provided programs, this organization helps insure that those in the industry all work to a set standard. Standards help ensure that there is no confusion about the steps necessary to properly complete a job, and allows clients to know what to expect their chosen professional to do during restoration.
The standards set by the IICRC allow you to know that the professional restoration team chosen to work on your client’s property can perform the job to the same degree of excellence you seek to provide yourself. This non-profit organization seeks to provide globally set standards for every restoration professional to follow, ensuring that every job is performed with quality results. Choosing a certified professional can allow you to know what to expect from any restoration job.
How To Avoid Space Heater Fires
Space Heater Safety Tips
A space heater can provide extra warmth. It can also save on heating bills by allowing you to set the thermostat in your home in Blairstown, NJ, on low while still heating the specific rooms you are using to a comfortable temperature. A burned space heater doesn't help you, though. To avoid space heater fires, you need to follow a few simple tips.
Space Heater Safety Tips
Give It Space
The heating elements on a space heater give off an impressive amount of heat, but they can turn into a fire hazard quickly if they are crowded. There are several guidelines to make sure you have enough space around your heater:
- Maintain radius of three feet from flammable objects
- Don't use near combustible substances, such as gasoline
- Keep children and pets away from heater
- Set it on a level surface so it doesn't topple over
Turn It Off
To avoid having a burned space heater when you leave the room, remember to turn it off. Space heaters should never be left unattended while they are on, especially if you leave the house altogether. In fact, it's a good idea to unplug the heater when you are not at home. Keep an eye out for a frayed or otherwise damaged cord.
Keep It Clean
Keep your space heater clean to minimize fire risk. Dust and other debris can turn a functioning space heater into an electric fireplace in a hurry. Replace filters regularly according to the manufacturer's recommendation so that dirt does not infiltrate the heating mechanism. Follow maintenance instructions so that it not only lasts a long time but also does not become a safety issue.
A burned space heater can turn convenience into a nightmare. By following these simple guidelines, you can increase your creature comforts while still keeping you and your family safe. To avoid having to call for fire cleanup with a restoration company, choose a space heater that is safe and use it safely.
How Does Storm Damage Differ From Flooding?
Mold Damaged Wall Board
Property owners may have a hard time differentiating storm damage from flood damage. Commercial properties can sustain water damage from either source. There are a few major differences to keep in mind that may help you manage these risks.
Storms Versus Floods
The most general distinction is that storm water comes from above, whereas flood water usually overspills natural bodies or courses of water and covers at least two acres of ordinarily dry land. Storm damage to a commercial property may originate from a variety of causes such as
• High winds
• Heavy rain
• Tropical storms
Most business insurance plans provide protection from damage caused by storms. Property owners will need additional coverage to offset the expenses of flood damage. If your property is located on a flood plain, you should make sure you carry the policies necessary to protect your investment.
Flooding occurs when water overflows a body of water or watercourse such as
• Beaches or coasts
• Stormwater channels
Mold From Flood Damage
Mold growing from fallen ceiling damage
For water to be considered a flood, it must not only cover two acres but affect at least two properties. If a commercial property is located in a high-risk zone and the owner has a mortgage from an insured and federally-regulated lender, he or she is required to maintain flood insurance. Damage resulting from either flooding or storms can cause severe problems and should be planned for, prevented, and handled as soon as possible. Regardless of the source of moisture, the risk of mold and other secondary damage within a building can be just as severe.
Restoring Mold Damage From Storms and Floods
Restoration specialists can help property owners determine the precise causes of mold damage and the best solutions. If a commercial property in Blairstown, NJ experiences flood damage or sustains damage during a storm, contact a commercial mold damage restoration company as soon as possible.
3 Steps To Take if You Find Mold in Your Apartment Building
Mold Damage in Blairstown, NJ
If you live in an apartment in Blairstown, NJ and find mold growth in your building, you may not know what to do next. There are several crucial steps that both landlords and tenants can take to make the mold cleanup process easier.
1. Safely Remove Water
Where there is mold, there is often water, and floods or leaks are a common cause of mold growth in apartments. Mold spores tend to grow in damp, dark areas, so removing any water that you can safely remove can help to prevent further mold growth. However, if you are unsure whether or not you can remove the water without risking your health, then it’s best to ask for assistance from professionals.
2. Speak With Your Landlord/Tenants
If you are the tenant in an apartment, you will need to speak with your landlord to inform them about the mold growth. Alternatively, if you are a landlord, you are also responsible for informing your tenants about mold contamination. As the building owners, landlords are primarily responsible for the mold cleanup process and should prioritize the well-being of their tenants.
3. Request the Testing of Affected Areas
In order to understand the safest way to eliminate mold and to clean the surrounding area, it’s often important for the areas affected by mold to be tested. Whether you are a tenant or a landlord, requesting that professionals test the area is generally an important step to take. Once the type of mold has been identified, professionals will be able to give you a better idea of how long the cleanup process will take and if there is also growth elsewhere.
Whether you are a landlord or tenant, finding mold in your building doesn’t have to result in a long mold cleanup process. Many people find it helpful to employ mold removal professionals to ensure that mold is safely eliminated.
4 Tips for Traveling During Storm Season
Have a plan for Traveling during winter storms
Storms can happen any time in Hackettstown, NJ. Heavy rains and strong winds can cause damage to your home, but they can also affect your ability to travel. While a storm remediation service cannot help fix your travel plans, it can help repair any damage done to your home. If you want to travel, however, you can remember these four tips to help you avoid a canceled flight and have the best trip possible.
1. Have a Backup Plan
Planning a trip during storm season can be risky, but you don't always have a choice. If you must fly when bad weather is likely, try to have a backup plan ready. This could include buying a travel insurance plan to help you reserve a new seat if your original flight is canceled. You may also want to consider having alternate travel dates in mind just in case.
2. Get to the Airport on Time
Even if you get an email telling you your flight has been delayed, you may still want to get to the airport in time for the original flight departure. The weather may clear up, which could allow the flight time to be moved back up. If you end up with a canceled flight, you are already at the airport to figure out a new travel plan.
3. Know Who To Call
Before you get to the airport, you may want to find out who you would have to call should your flight get canceled. Calling the airline directly can help you figure out a new flight if yours gets canceled. You may be told to go to the airline desk, but that will leave you waiting in line for who knows how long.
4. Pack Light
A canceled flight could require you to quickly change your travel plans. If you have to check bags, there's a chance you may lose some of your luggage in the shuffle. Keeping everything in carry-on bags ensures you can keep track of all of your belongings.
Traveling any time can be stressful. Keeping these storm tips in mind can help you have a great trip.
How To Stay Safe When a Thunderstorm Threatens Your Business
Keep any trees or shrubbery surrounding your business trimmed.
How To Stay Safe When A Thunderstorm Threatens Your Business
When a rain storm threatens your business, it’s important to protect not only your building, but also any employees and customers who are trapped inside. Knowledge of proper storm procedures can mean the difference between a safe outcome or possible injury or death. By keeping a few guidelines in mind when inclement weather hits, you can ensure your business in Hermon, NJ emerges safely.
1. Keep track of weather reports.
During peak thunderstorm season, you should familiarize yourself with your local emergency weather warning system and sign up for automatic text or email storm alerts. Monitor the weather using an online radar tracker every day, so you’ll have a head start if a system is approaching. A few hours of advance notice should give you adequate time to prepare your business and evacuate the building if necessary.
2. Avoid standing near windows.
High winds during a rain storm have the power to shatter glass and severely injure anyone in the building. If a storm hits while employees or customers are inside your business, direct them to an underground basement or gather everyone in the center of the building away from windows. Keep any trees or shrubbery surrounding your business trimmed to prevent strong winds from blowing them into the glass.
3. Stay inside until danger passes.
Just because it’s stopped raining and storm clouds have passed over doesn’t mean it’s safe to go outside. Flash flooding, fallen debris, and downed power lines can pose potential hazards in the aftermath of a storm. Keep staff and customers inside the building until local news and weather reports confirm it’s safe to venture out. If your building floods from heavy rainfall, try to keep everyone away from waterlogged areas and contact a certified water damage restoration company immediately to assess the damage.
A heavy rain storm moving toward your business can be frightening, but remember to stay calm and follow proper safety procedures before and after the storm. Protecting your employees and customers should always be your first priority in an emergency.
The 3 Most Common Home Fire Causes
Smoking is one of the most preventable causes of a home fire
The 3 Most Common Home Fire Causes
The most common causes of home fires can be prevented with basic fire safety measures and equipment. Find out more about three common fire causes to make more informed home fire safety decisions.
Cooking often involves a combination of hot stoves or ovens, open fire, and flammable substances,
such as animal or vegetable oils or grease. It is important to monitor food while cooking. If you are cooking something that takes a long time, periodically check in on the progress to prevent burning. Make sure that smoke detectors in this part of a home are functional. A fire extinguisher can promote kitchen safety, but may also cause grease fires to spread. Keep baking soda and salt near the stove to smother these types of fires before covering flames with a metal lid or another pot.
Malfunctioning furnaces or the improper use of space heaters are common causes of heating fires. Schedule regular furnace inspections and perform periodic maintenance. Only operate a space heater on a hard, non-flammable surface while attended and at a safe distance from combustible materials.
Smoking is one of the most preventable causes of a home fire. Avoid smoking in bedrooms or after taking medication that may cause drowsiness. Use stable ashtrays when smoking indoors and ensure that cigarettes are completely extinguished before leaving the room. It is safest to smoke outside and provide a wind-proof disposal solution, such as a bucket filled with sand.
Cooking, heating, and smoking are three common fire causes. A homeowner may be able to prevent or limit the damage resulting from a home fire by taking precautionary measures and installing and testing fire safety equipment such as smoke detectors and fire extinguishers. A damage restoration and fire cleaning service can help if a fire breaks out for any reason at a residence in Washington Township, NJ.
Four Ways to Remove and Prevent Plant Mildew
Plant mildew can be harmful to your plants
Getting Rid Of Mildew
Mildew is a specific kind of mold that grows on living plants. It has a powdery appearance and is usually white or gray in color. Because plant mildew can affect the health of your plants, it is important to remove it. There are a few ways that you can get rid of the mildew on your plants and prevent it from coming back.
1. Wash the Plant With Water
One way to remove mildew growth from an affected plant is to wash it with a water spray. This should remove most of the mildew that has accumulated on your plants. Be careful, however, about overwatering your plants. It can help to water the roots of your plants instead of just wetting the leaves.
2. Prune the Plant
Removing the sections with the most plant mildew is a good strategy. Pruning the infected areas of the plant can keep the growth from spreading. It can also prevent mildew from reappearing by improving the air circulation through and around the plant which keeps it from becoming too moist.
3. Move the Plant to a Different Environment
Certain environments can promote mildew growth on your plants. If you are experiencing a wet and humid climate in Bowling Green, KY, you are more likely to have this problem. Moving your plants to an area with more sunlight can be helpful. You should also make sure that your plants have plenty of room, as overcrowding them can also result in mildew.
4. Make Sure to Keep Your Plants Healthy
If you do not take proper care of your plants, they are more susceptible to mildew. If you keep them strong and healthy, you can make them less vulnerable to this kind of growth.
Plant mildew can be very harmful to your plants, so if you find any, be sure to remove it as soon as possible and take steps to keep it from returning. A mold removal specialist may be able to help you figure out the best course of action.
How to Clean Electronics After a Fire
Unplug all electrical devices and leave them off
There’s a lot to worry about during and after a fire in your office. Next to the safety and well-being of your staff, you have concerns about the extent of damage to your equipment and supplies. Whether an electrical fire or other type of fire damaged your electronics, there are ways to minimize the problems and even restore the items.
What Can Happen?
Even minor fires in your Oxford Township,NJ, office can threaten your sensitive equipment. You want to act quickly to evaluate the damage. Fire and smoke damage can harm electronics in the following ways:
- Soot. Smoke will leave behind a layer of soot, which carries acidic properties. High concentrations of acid can ruin computers, printers, and other equipment.
- Smoke causes magnetic charges. You don’t want a magnetic charge to come into contact with any electric item. This can destroy circuits on any device.
- Overheating. Smoke can bring a nasty black film, which will settle on electronics. This can lead to overheating issues, reducing an electronic item’s life.
What Can You Do?
Your first step after an electrical fire is to unplug all electrical devices and leave them off. No matter what, don’t plug them back in or try to start them up again. This can cause further damage. Before you try to handle any of the clean-up yourself, call a trained professional. Expert fire and smoke cleanup companies can take care of damage effectively and in a timely manner.
Why Call the Pros
A professional has both the knowledge and equipment to properly handle computer cleanup. The team will use specialized methods to prevent further problems and will give you the best chance of using your computers, printers, televisions, and other devices once again.
No one wants to deal with an electrical fire. If you face this daunting task, make sure you let a competent specialist employ the right skills and training to help you out.
Can My Carpet Be Saved After Water Damage?
Hot water extraction on carpet in Washington Township, NJ
If your home in Washington Township, NJ, has recently gone through water damage that affected your carpets, it doesn’t necessarily mean they need to be replaced. In the case of a pipe break, they could possibly be saved.
Types of Carpet Cleaning Services
When looking for a professional residential restoration company, you should be able to find a list of the types of services they provide. These may include the following treatments:
- Bonnet cleaning: This method is gentle enough for short-piled carpets.
- Hot water extraction: All types of carpeting can benefit from this cleaning technique.
- Dry cleaning: This may be necessary when there are color-fastness issues.
- Showcase premier cleaning: Known as one of the most thorough cleaning methods, it’s best for highly-soiled flooring.
- Deluxe precondition and rinse: This will deep-clean and restore your carpets.
A typical carpet cleaning should include extracting the moisture, sanitizing the area and drying it. These procedures should bring most carpets back to life, depending on the condition they're in.
How To Know Whether To Restore or Replace Your Carpets
Carpets are highly absorbent, so when water damage occurs, it’s normal to replace them with new flooring. However, if the cause of damage is from a clean water source such as a pipe break, it’s possible to have it cleaned and restored to its original condition. In some cases, the carpet may be even cleaner than before, which could improve your family’s health.
In the event of gray or black water contamination, your carpets should be replaced since it’s highly likely that the water will contain bacteria that can affect your home and health. The longer that your carpeting is saturated, the more likely it could lead to mold, mildew and unpleasant odors.
If there is a pipe break in your home that has damaged your carpet, you may be able to rescue it through a professional restoration service. Although you may be able to clean some of the affected areas yourself, it’s always a good idea to contact a team of professionals who can ensure that your carpets will be safe from any further damage.
What to Do When Your Basement Has Flooded
Flooded basement in Washington Township, NJ
What Steps Should You Take?
When you own a home in Washington Township, NJ, there's always a danger that your basement can become flooded, whether from a broken pipe, a bad storm or other causes. The aftermath can be overwhelming, especially if it's never happened to you before. When there's a basement flood, it's important to take care of the problem quickly before more damage occurs.
1. Call the Insurance Company
Hopefully, you have insurance coverage for flooding. Call your agent and find out what you can expect to be reimbursed for. This can be helpful if the flooding is severe, and you need to call on a water remediation company to assess the situation and do the necessary work to get the basement back in order.
2. Protect Yourself
If basement flood has reached above the electrical outlets, there can be danger of electrocution. Even if there's only an inch or so of water, you should wear rubber boots just to be safe.
If the amount of water is manageable, and the electrical service panel is in the basement, set down dry lumber or a use a step stool to get above the water and shut off the basement circuits. Then plug in a wet/dry vacuum into an upstairs outlet and use it to get the excess water out of the basement. For more severe flooding, you may have to rent a heavy-duty pump.
If there are gas appliances in the basement, you should turn off the gas at the meter. The meter can be found outside the house. Turn the stub on the side of the meter with a wrench, making it perpendicular with the pipe.
3. Call a Professional
The best thing to do may be to call on a professional water remediation specialist. They are specially trained to handle the aftermath of a basement flood, and can check for any secondary damage such as mold. While you may want to handle it yourself, these experts can make sure your basement is dry, clean and sanitary, and completely restored to the condition it was in before the flood.
Protect Your Home and Family With These 3 Fire Alarm Tips
Replace your smoke alarm
Fire Prevention and Detection
There are several ways to protect your Oxford Township,NJ, home from damage or danger, especially when it comes to fire prevention and detection. You may believe that having a fire alarm present in the kitchen or main room of your home is adequate protection; however, since fires can start anywhere and grow quickly, it is important to understand how effective your fire detection tactics are before a fire breaks out.
1. Review the Current Number of Alarms
While having a smoke alarm on the main floor of your home can give you a measure of protection from fire and reduce the chance of major smoke damage to that room and its contents, it may not have the reach to detect fires in other areas of your home. For example, if the fire starts in the basement, the alarm may not sound until the blaze has grown large enough to reach the first floor from below. Consider placing a smoke detector on each floor and inside each bedroom for optimum protection.
2. Test and Change Batteries Annually
Choosing a specific day to replace the batteries in each fire alarm inside your home can help you remember to service them all at the same time. One way to remind yourself is to set a notification on your phone or calendar the day the clocks fall back in late fall so you can be sure each alarm has fresh batteries for the coming winter, when the risk of fire damage increases due to the use of space heaters, fireplaces and candles.
3. Examine and Replace Older Smoke Detectors
If any smoke detectors in your home are 10 years of age or older, you might want to replace them with newer models. Older alarms might fail when you need them most, which can result in disaster. If you want to add new alarms to your home as well as replace old ones, ask a fire damage and restoration service to advise you about where to place them.
Understanding fire alarm maintenance can help you protect your Oxford Township,NJ, home. The more you learn, the better the chances you can prevent the devastation a house fire causes.
How To Keep Your Business Running in an Emergency
Commercial water and fire damage in Mount Hermon, NJ
Business Continuity Plan
One of the biggest fears for business owners in Mount Hermon,NJ, is losing any momentum they have gained when disaster strikes. But once you have a business continuity plan in place, there is no need to fear stalled progress. Whether you have a new or an established company, protect your assets by building a plan specific to you.
1. Conduct a Business Impact Analysis Survey with your more experienced employees. You will need to assess the most vulnerable areas in your company and determine how to keep the risk of loss low. Where will you conduct your business if you have to vacate the premises, for example? When is the best time to contact commercial building restoration services? With a thorough assessment of your company’s needs, you can be better prepared to continue work, whether that means renting out an area from a nearby facility or having a temporary workplace set up.
2. Develop an emergency response team. Your team should be willing and able to handle its daily responsibilities and emergency response training. If you choose, you can have yourself or the team leader trained as a Business Continuity Plan Professional by taking a course from the Disaster Recovery Institute International. A certified professional can direct your team with efficient loss prevention techniques.
3. Update your emergency response plan with new training and revisions. As your business grows and changes, your plan will need to grow and change with it. Keep your employees informed of any changes and the reasons behind them. That way, when an unexpected setback occurs, you are ready.
In the event of flood, fire, or other emergency, you would hate to lose business because you had no plan to keep the wheels running. No one can expect when a flood or fire will occur, but you can prepare for the unpredictable at any time. No occasion is better than the present to develop a business continuity plan.
Mold Myths Dismantled
Mold damage in Mount Hermon,NJ
Mold is a topic nobody thinks about unless they’ve found some. By then, they’re usually frantically searching for fungus cleanup tips. That can take you into the depths of the internet researching sketchy DIY bleach formulas and the like. Mold myths can waste your time at best and worsen your Mount Hermon,NJ, mold problem at worst. Get up to date on the latest mold myths and learn how not to cleanup mold.
Mold Myths Typically Center On
- How mold should be removed
- What mold is
- What causes mold
Each can cause you to endure a mold problem longer than necessary, so it’s important to dismantle these fungus cleanup myths.
Myth 1 – Bleach Is Best for Mold Removal
Many people immediately turn to chlorine bleach for stopping mold growth. But while bleach is good for many things, mold removal is not one of them. That’s because it doesn’t penetrate porous materials to get to where mold roots live and thrive. Bleach also contains water, a big no no when preventing mold.
Myth 2 – Your Business Can and Should Be Totally Mold Free
As much of a problem as they can be, mold spores are a natural part of the environment that are all around us every day. There’s not truly a way to remove every single mold spore from your business and that’s ok – mold’s only an issue when its concentration reaches super high, visible levels.
Myth 3 – Mold Is Harmless
Mold is going to be in your environment, but letting it grow unchecked isn’t a great idea. Mold allergies are well documented and mold’s destructive effects on walls, floors, furniture and the like are undeniable.
While mold and fungus cleanup can seem urgent, making sure you’re not worsening the problem is most important. Pay attention to mold myths and you’ll understand what to do, what not to do, and when it’s time to get professional mold help.
How To Ensure You Find All the Smoke Damage in Your Building
Smoke damage in a Oxford Township,NJ commercial property
Smoke Penetrates all Surfaces
If you have a fire in your building or there is a fire in a nearby building in Oxford Township,NJ, you could suffer smoke damage. Getting rid of it requires being aware of where it is, which can be a difficult thing to do. You have to understand how smoke moves through a building and how it damages items.
1. How Smoke Moves and Settles
Smoke seeks out cool areas, so it is most often found in higher areas of the building. If you have a second story, expect to find excessive smoke damage in that area compared to the other areas of your building. Be aware that you must clean even those areas without visible damage if smoke penetrated them. While damage can be invisible to the eye, it usually leaves behind a dry and powdery or sticky residue.
2. How Damage Occurs
Probably the most obvious result of smoke you will notice is soot damage. This usually causes a staining or yellow discoloring on the affected item. Do keep in mind that it may not show up right away. This is especially true when it comes to walls, flooring and other porous materials, such as stone. It may also result in the corrosion or tarnishing of metals.
3. How Important Smoke Cleaning Can Be
You may notice a lingering odor if you fail to get every exposed surface clean because smoke gets locked into fabrics and carpet. Even a small area left uncleaned can make the whole building smell of smoke. Sometimes the only solution is to contact smoke remediation specialists. They will help you know if the tiny smoke particles are so embedded into the materials that you have to remove the items.
After a fire in Oxford Township,NJ, it is imperative to remove all the smoke damage in your building. If you do not understand how smoke moves through an area, it can make this process difficult. However, being aware of what you face in terms of damage allows you to get your building back to its pre-fire state.
3 Steps to a Fresh Home After Flooding
Water damage restoration in Oxford Township,NJ
Restore Your Home After Flooding
Restoring your home after flooding is hard work but well worth it. As long as you keep these three steps in mind, you can prevent mold growth, protect your health, and revitalize your home.
1. Clear Your Space
Get all the water you can out of your home, and remember that a wet/dry shop-vac is your friend. Dispose of any items that are waterlogged. Lay out a tarp in a dry, sunny area for anything you want to keep. Wood and metal items can be dried out and refinished or painted. Photos may be a bit damaged, but many can be restored digitally.
2. Inspect the Walls
Water can get into the tiniest of cracks and lead to mold growth. If you can slip a sheet of paper into a spot, it's possible for water to get through. You’ll need to find those spaces in your walls and flooring.
Carefully feel around. Is anything soft that shouldn’t be? Do you hear anything when you walk around or knock on walls? Examine all the corners you can find. You may need to pull out baseboards and other trim. Wall-to-wall carpet will likely need to be replaced.
3. Dry It Out
Open up all the windows and use high-powered fans to begin the drying process. If available, use specialized heaters and lamps on the damper areas. If water has gotten into your walls and floors, or if you suspect there might be mold, it’s time to call mold remediation specialists. They have the mold removal equipment, industrial fans and heaters, cleaning products and professional expertise required to get your home back to a clean, fresh state.
Water in your Oxford Township,NJ, home isn’t the end of the world. With hard work and a little help from the pros, your home and possessions can be cleaned, repaired, and restored so you can move on from mold growth and get back to creating memories.
7 Steps To Prepare Your Company for Disaster
Have an evacuation plan to prepare your company for any disaster in Oxford Township,NJ
Catastrophic events happen almost everywhere, and Oxford Township,NJ, is not exempt. Disaster preparedness is a must for every company, and there are several ways to ensure the safety of your employees and your business.
Steps you can take to be sure you are ready for various types of incidents.
- Assess every risk. Your business should research every potential risk and disaster, both common and uncommon. It’s crucial to know what you’re getting into before something happens.
- Have a continuity plan. Analyze your finances and business procedures to pinpoint what is needed for your company to continue on after a disaster. This includes hierarchy of power, emergency payroll, backed-up accounting systems, data recovery plans and more.
- Stay up to date on your insurance coverage. Fully understand what your insurance covers and what it does not. Know how to file efficient claims if needed.
- Have an evacuation plan. Evacuation plan maps should be posted throughout the entire building to indicate the best ways to escape when necessary.
- Have a shelter plan. Just as evacuation maps are posted, shelter plans should be posted as well. Whether it’s a tornado, earthquake, lock-in or severe storm, you should have multiple shelter areas that are quickly and easily accessible to everyone in each part of your building.
- Plant first-aid kits and supplies throughout your building. Emergency supplies are incredibly important for disaster preparedness. Keep several of them in safe places.
- Keep employees informed. Whether it’s through regular meetings, drills or memos, make sure your employees are not only aware of your business preparedness plan, but fully understand it as well.
If disaster does hit, all is not lost. Recovering is possible with a great disaster preparedness plan and a little help. Have the information of restoration specialists on hand in case of an emergency. Incidents happen, even in Oxford Township,NJ, and your company should be prepared.
How Long Does the Average Water Damage Cleanup Take
Water remediation in a Washington Township,NJ home
If you have to deal with bursting pipes in your Washington Township, NJ, home, you may want to know how much time the job will take before you start. While your residential water remediation team could give you an idea of the length of your cleanup, it's important to remember that special factors might change the timeline. Some things that could make your project take longer include the following:
- Wood floors
- Mold growth
- Sewage leak
Barring these special circumstances, the average home flood recovery takes between three and five days. Check out this guide to figure out why a water cleanup takes this long.
Remove the Water
The first step in the process is to remove the moisture from your home. Depending on the type of water damage you have sustained, you may need to drain standing floodwater, soak up minor leaks or simply reduce the humidity in the air. To properly get rid of the problem, your experts will have to determine the source: bursting pipes or a leaky roof, for example. This allows them to stop the flow so they will not have to dry out your home more than once.
Repair Damaged Areas
Once the professionals fix the broken pipe and remove the water, they move on to the restoration portion of the cleaning. This step may include scrubbing personal possessions. It could also involve ripping out and replacing damaged building materials. Essentially, repair teams remove the affected elements of your home in preparation to put everything back the way it was before.
Return the House to Normal
The final step in the cleanup is to make sure your home is returned to normal. This could mean staining floors or painting walls. Remediation can help you get your home looking like new relatively quickly. You shouldn't have to live with the effects of a flood for the foreseeable future.
Bursting pipes can affect your home in a wide variety of ways, but these disasters don't have to affect you for long. Most cleanup processes can be completed in less than a week.
Dealing with Sewer Damage to Two or More Floors
If your business has sustained sewer damage to more than one floor due to flooded toilets, you will need to get the situation under control quickly.
If your Phillipsburg, NJ, business has sustained sewer damage to more than one floor due to flooded toilets, you will need to get the situation under control quickly. You'll likely have some structural damage, as well as contamination from black water. The longer you wait, the more likely you'll sustain more damage and exposure to harmful bacteria and mold. It's important to call a professional sewage company right away. A water damage restoration service will be able to come out in a few hours, and following the steps outlined below, quickly assess and deal with the problem.
1. Problem Assessment
Once they arrive, the restoration experts will look at the sewer damage to determine what kind of specialized equipment needs to be deployed. They will test the water to find out what kind of contaminants are present, so that they can know which types of cleaning and disinfecting agents should be used.
2. Removing Building Contents
The next thing the restoration experts will do is remove all contents, including furniture, office equipment and documents, from the affected floors of the building. Some items, such as saturated carpets, may not be able to be salvaged, but whatever can will be dried, cleaned and disinfected using specialized cleaning methods and equipment.
3. Water Extraction
As soon as everything is cleared out of the sewage-damaged area, the technicians will begin the process of removing the water from the building. They will use heavy duty equipment such as sump and trash pumps, as well as truck-mounted extraction units, to pull out all the water and debris. Any wet, contaminated materials such as damaged ceiling tiles, flooring and drywall will be removed at this time. Any affected surfaces will be completely cleaned and disinfected.
4. Excess Moisture Removal
Once most of the water has been extracted and the surfaces cleaned and disinfected, further steps will be taken to remove any residual moisture from hard-to-reach places. Special-purpose air movers and dehumidifiers will be employed to make sure every inch of the damaged area has been thoroughly dried.
5. The Restoration Phase
Once everything has been completely dried and sanitized, the reconstruction of damaged areas can begin. This might involve minor repairs to drywall and repainting, or might entail the rebuilding of entire rooms of the structure.
When sewer damage affects your commercial building, don't panic! By following the procedures outlined above, a professional restoration company will have your business back to normal in no time. For more information, visit http://www.SERVPROwarrencountynj.com/.
Flood Damage: Steps to Take before an Insurance Claim
Flood season in Phillipsburg, NJ, is intense and often leaves most homeowners scratching their heads wondering what they’re supposed to do.
Flood season in Phillipsburg, NJ, is intense and often leaves most homeowners scratching their heads wondering what they’re supposed to do after a flood has hit their home. The main thing, if you have flood insurance, is to take the necessary steps toward making a flood claim.
1. Begin Cleanup Immediately
While many people believe that you have to leave your house as it is until an insurance adjuster can view the damage, that is not likely the case. Many insurance companies prefer homeowners to begin the initial cleanup so that when adjusters come out, they can more clearly see the damage, and provide a homeowner with a better assessment.
2. Contact Your Flood Insurance Company
You can contact your flood insurance company as you begin the cleanup process. Making this initial contact allows the insurance company to start the process of an insurance claim. Additionally, notifying your insurance company will enable you to ask any questions about the do’s and don’ts of the cleanup process before an adjuster arrives.
3. Take Pictures
Most insurance companies will require you to take inventory of any damaged items, which includes providing proof of loss. By taking photographs and organizing them with receipts, you can help speed up the flood claim process as well as ensure that the adjuster is well-informed about all of the damage caused by the flood.
4. Keep Damaged Material
While it may seem that taking photographs is enough to prove damage and loss, your insurance company may require the actual evidence and visual inspection by the adjuster. Though you may be required to hang on to any damaged furniture or items as evidence, you do not need to keep them inside your home where they can hinder the cleanup process. It is perfectly okay to place any damaged items in your garage or elsewhere.
When following the steps above, a flood claim is a pretty straightforward process, requiring the homeowner to streamline the adjustment process by cleaning any damaged areas and documenting any loss. For more information, visit http://www.SERVPROwarrencountynj.com/.
3 Ways To Manage a Mold Problem
These mold prevention methods can prevent water damage from escalating into mold damage.
Mold spores are everywhere, but you can take measures to keep them from multiplying in your home. Address water damage from any source such as a leak or flood before mold growth starts by following these three mold prevention tips.
1. Eliminate Moisture: Mold cannot thrive without moisture present. Call a plumber if necessary to quickly repair any leaks. You should then thoroughly dry the affected area to limit the amount of primary and secondary damage. Take steps to prevent moisture from collecting or lingering in rooms in your home where water is frequently used, such as the kitchen or bathrooms. You may want to run a dehumidifier to dry out porous or semi-porous building materials and contents.
2. Survey the Damage: After water damage occurs, you should survey the extent and come up with a strategy to quickly remove all water and dry wet materials and contents. Keep in mind that items exposed to Category Two grey water or Category Three black water, which may contain contaminants or sewage, will also need to be cleaned. You may want to rely on the expertise of damage restoration professionals to perform this cleanup and prevent mold from starting to grow.
3. Replace or Restore: Determine which damaged materials or items need to be thrown away and replaced and which items should be restored. Perform a cost-benefit analysis to determine the most practical approach. There are a variety of methods for restoring delicate items such as paintings, leather, or upholstery. You may need to tear out and replace carpeting or drywall.
These mold prevention methods can prevent water damage from escalating into mold damage. Keep in mind that mold growth may begin in as little as 24 hours after a leak or flood. Follow these tips and do not hesitate to rely on the expertise of mold remediation specialists in Phillipsburg, NJ. For more information, visit http://www.SERVPROwarrencountynj.com/.
How to Clean Content Post-Flood
It can be hard to let go of control over your items during content cleaning, especially ones that are vital to your business.
If a storm in Phillipsburg, NJ, recently caused your commercial building to flood, you are probably wondering if and how you can clean your valuable items that have been damaged or soiled by black water. There are typically two types of items and different ways to approach content cleaning for both.
Non-porous items will not be penetrated from water in a very severe way. You will recognize which items are non-porous at your place of business because they will most likely be made of one of the following materials:
These types of objects can typically be restored from flood damage with help from a contents restoration company that has professional experience in content cleaning, especially where items affected by black water are concerned. Some may not even need restoration at all. For instance, a plastic storage container can likely be dried off and sanitized to return to its original state. It always helps to inspect each item to determine the level of cleaning that will be required.
Porous materials, such as paper, will likely get soaked all the way through by water after a flood and may even need to be disposed of. However, the company that helps you restore your non-porous items may be able to help you restore certain objects, such as photographs from your employees’ work spaces or important business documents.
While electronics are typically not porous in the same way that paper or other delicate materials are, cleaning them is both difficult and dangerous and needs to be handled by a qualified, experienced technician. Never attempt to repair water-damaged electrical items yourself.
Get Help When You Need It
It can be hard to let go of control over your items during content cleaning, especially ones that are vital to your business. However, there are many cases where help from a technician, a restoration company or even a trusted friend can go a long way in helping you restore your valuables in the quickest and safest way possible. Follow the advice laid out here and seek assistance when needed to increase your chances of restoring your items. For more information, visit http://www.SERVPROwarrencountynj.com/.
When Is a Flooded Basement Covered by Insurance?
There are some things even the most DIY homeowner cannot fix, and sometimes insurance doesn’t cover repairs for a basement flood.
A basement flood is a pretty big catastrophe, but it’s not the end of the world. Insurance companies cover some extent of the damage, depending on the cause and the type of insurance coverage you have. Here’s how to figure out if your basement flood is covered and what to do if it’s not.
Consider the Cause
The following causes are usually included in homeowners insurance coverage:
? Accidental (e.g., fire)
? Sudden (e.g., explosions)
? Damage to the home from something broken inside (e.g., water damage from a ruptured water heater or a burst pipe)
? Weather damage
? Fallen tree damage
All of the above are included under dwelling coverage. Other forms of damage are not covered by most homeowners insurance policies:
? Poor maintenance of appliances and utilities
? Failure to repair faulty appliances and utilities
? An outside sewer, drain or sump pump causing water backup
? Flooding, particularly if it’s from an outside source
It will also not cover the cost of replacing faulty appliances and other sources of damage. To get a better idea about specific damages that will be repaired, contact your insurance provider.
Other Types of Insurance Coverage
Some homeowners get additional personal property coverage. It pays for damages to your belongings by covered risks. Like health insurance, you would end up paying a deductible before coverage begins, and the deductible amount depends on the coverage you want.
Another common add-on policy is flood insurance, since traditional insurance policies don’t cover this form of disaster. The federal government provides this type of coverage. While most people understand that high-risk areas need flood insurance, it’s easy to assume that low and moderate-risk areas might never experience a basement flood or a flooded house. Similarly, there is an add-on for water backup coverage. It might pay for the cost of replacing furniture or removing water.
There are some things even the most DIY homeowner cannot fix, and sometimes insurance doesn’t cover repairs for a basement flood. A professional cleanup and restoration service in Phillipsburg, NJ, can resolve any remaining issues quickly and efficiently. For more information, visit http://www.SERVPROwarrencountynj.com/.
What Happens if Smoke Damage Affects Your Workplace?
After a fire and smoke damage, your insurance company and a competent cleanup company will work closely with you to ensure a seamless process.
When you think of a fire, you probably worry about the potential devastation and destruction the flames can cause. While this is a valid fear, you can’t discount the effects of smoke damage. This presents health concerns and can be difficult to eliminate. Cleanup in your Phillipsburg, NJ, office can be costly as well, but fortunately, your fire insurance policy should cover it.
Call Your Insurance Company
If your company has fire insurance coverage (and hopefully you do), you need to call your agent as soon as the fire crews put out the blaze. Your agent will want to know the extent of the damage and where the fire occurred.
• Detail equipment you lost or that was damaged.
• Detail areas of your office that was damaged or had smoke damage issues.
• Take photos after firefighters put out the fire.
Insurance Company Assessment
Your insurance agent will inspect your building after you make a claim. You can have peace of mind knowing that your policy should cover damages from the smoke even if the fire originated in a building next door.
Get the Pros Involved
Once you know your insurance company will take care of cleanup costs, you need to get a qualified fire cleanup company on the case. An experienced, skilled team will handle smoke cleaning to help rid your building of unpleasant smells. The specialists will also handle other consequences such as soot damage.
Get You up and Running
You can’t afford to be out of your office too long. Luckily, the best companies can work quickly and efficiently. After the cleanup process, the team will remove and replace damaged items such as drywall, flooring, and your roof.
After a fire and smoke damage, your insurance company and a competent cleanup company will work closely with you to ensure a seamless process. This will allow you to focus on maintaining your business. For more information, visit http://www.SERVPROwarrencountynj.com/.
Getting Standing Water Out of Your Building
When a storm passes through Washington Township, NJ, you never know what to expect. Your commercial building could be left untouched, or you may have to deal with standing water in your lower levels. When the damage is more severe, you have to know what to do next. Calling in a storm restoration professional can help you react quickly and smartly. Removing standing water from a building requires the use of special equipment and fast actions.
Know What To Use
Standing water can lead to major structural problems and mold growth if allowed to linger in your building for too long. Because the issues can be huge, you need to know what equipment to use. Often, this type of remediation requires the following:
• Truck mounts
• Trash pump
This commercial-grade machinery can pump out liquids, sludges and solids, which means you don't have to worry about sifting through the dirty water to let the machine run smoothly. Instead, the professionals come in, hook up the hoses and start pumping out your unwanted water.
Know How To Prepare
Once the water has been drained out of your building, you likely don't want to repeat the process ever again. While the professionals can do a good job of helping you dry out the space, it requires a lot of work and can cause your business to lose production time. You can reduce the chances of standing water filling up your building after a storm by installing a sump pump. This pump sits in a hole and works to remove water as it starts to fill up a space. In other words, it works to stop flooding before it leads to standing water.
Storms can often leave you surprised. No one expects to find two feet of standing water in his or her building, but it does happen. If you ever find this unpleasant surprise on your property, you need to hire someone who has the equipment needed to remediate it.
3 Parts To Check When a Commercial Toilet Keeps Running
Your Washington Township, NJ, commercial building’s toilets need to run efficiently for the comfort of your employees and customers. However, when a plumbing issue like a toilet overflow happens, it can be unpleasant for everyone. This problem may be caused by a variety of issues, but some can be fixed without the assistance of a plumber. If a toilet keeps running, there are several parts you can check before you call in a flood damage and cleanup service to ensure your bathrooms are properly dried and deodorized after an overflow.
1. The Gasket
Once you turn off the water, the first step to take is to open the winter flushometer. This is the part that causes a commercial toilet to flush efficiently. Use a screwdriver and a wrench to remove this unit’s lid. The gasket is usually located directly under the lid. If it contains a lot of debris or buildup, carefully remove and clean the gasket thoroughly.
2. The Weep Hole
A commercial toilet’s weep hole controls its suction, so when it gets clogged, this may affect water flow and cause a continuous flush. When you remove the toilet’s gasket, take a close look at this small hole. Clean it carefully with a slim tool and ensure all the sediment and other debris is cleared out. This may stop a toilet from flushing constantly and prevent a future toilet flood.
3. The Flange Cover
If this part is loose or corroded, it may be affecting the unit’s proper operation and contribute to a toilet overflow. Note how much water you find under the cover. If there is enough to run over when you remove it, there may be a leak in the gasket or the cover might be faulty, and one or both could need replacing.
When your Washington Township, NJ, commercial building experiences a toilet overflow, it can be embarrassing and unpleasant. However, you may be able to repair it by checking and cleaning a few important parts inside the unit to prevent future floods.
Hidden Dangers of Water Damage
Flood water from a broken pipe can strike your home and leave standing water covering your floor. While many sources may describe how to clean the damaged area by yourself, the problem is often the unseen damage left behind by the water. Rather than tackle the situation by yourself, consider these hidden problems.
Categories of Water
Although the water flooding your home may look harmless, there is a real possibility the liquid is filled with harmful substances. Flood water has been classified into three categories to help water restoration and remediation professionals understand the danger levels of contaminates:
- Category 1: This water comes from a clean source such as a broken pipe and is considered safe.
- Category 2: This water contains a minor amount of contamination and is judged as unsafe.
- Category 3: This water is grossly contaminated and often comes from sources containing fecal matter, harmful chemicals, or pesticides.
Determining the danger level of the flood water in your home can be a difficult task. That is why most homeowners rely on a professional team to remove the contaminated water and sanitize the area.
Days and weeks after the water is gone, signs of secondary damage can suddenly appear. Mold colonies can emerge from still-damp areas of the home such as behind floorboards. The lower portion of walls can begin to sag, crack, and crumble. Tiles can start moving and the grout surrounding the ceramic area may disintegrate. Hardwood floors may also show signs of buckling and warping. Sadly, secondary damage can make an appearance long after your insurance company has settled your water damage claim.
A quick response is often the answer to eliminating water damage problems. Whether it is a broken pipe or torrential rains that flood your home in Washington Township, NJ, removing the water in a timely manner can minimize hidden damages and mitigate unseen hazards.