Commercial Fires in Your Building
If you own a business or manage a building, fire protection should be a primary concern. The best defense against commercial fires is to understand how a fire can occur and having a prevention plan.
Everything has a cause, so let's take a look at what can cause a commercial fire? The following are a few causes of commercial fires.
- Cooking equipment can build up oils and grease on them, when exposed to a certain level of heat, a fire can be sparked and ignited.
- Keep equipment clean and in working order. Heating equipment such as heaters, boilers, and furnaces can cause a fire when overheated or malfunction.
- Keep articles of clothing away from heat sources.
- Last in our list electrical fires can occur if your electrical wiring isn’t up to code or if you have too many items plugged in to an outlet be aware of all of these can be commercial fire hazards.
If your business location suffered from a fire loss or damage, don't think that your only option is to clean it up yourself. Call our team at SERVPRO of Kitsap County today to help get your damage back to normal "Like it never even happened."
Preparing for Flood Damage
Homeowners in Bremerton, WA, are like many homeowners all over the country: cognizant that flooding in any season is a potential threat and that working to minimize its destruction makes good sense. Investing time and effort ahead of a deluge is well worth the favorable outcome that can result from a proactive stance.
Proactive Flood Tips
There are many steps that homeowners can take to minimize flood damage in the event that waters rise. Some are straightforward inspection and maintenance issues that can be accomplished relatively quickly and easily.
• Clear debris from gutters and downspouts. If water can move freely through them, it has a better chance of being carried away from basements and foundations.
• Check that outflows from the home are fully operational.
• Install a sump pump or purchase an on-demand submersible pump and drainage hose, and regularly test them.
• Carry adequate flood insurance, especially if the home occupies an area prone to floods. Acquire sand bags and a source for filling them.
• Ensure that storm drains are clear and notify municipal authorities of any blockages that occur.
• Consider elevating appliances such as washers, dryers, and dehumidifiers in basements or other low-lying areas.
• Store irreplaceable documents and valuables off site, such as in a safe-deposit box.
Plan a Calm Response
In the event that flooding occurs that surpasses efforts to prevent its incursion, it is important to also have a response plan. Monitor local weather alerts and evacuate promptly if directed to do so. Assemble your family and pets. If staying at home is an option, move belongings to higher ground and place electrical appliances at the top. Cut power to avoid the risk of electrocution. Gather needed medications, food, drinking water, phones and their chargers.
It is important to remember that remediation services are only a phone call or email away. Storm damage and flooding remediation can begin as soon as travel becomes safe again.
For more on Bremerton click here.
Don’t Let Mold Call Your Washer Home
Cleaning your washer could prevent mold and mildew from growing
To thrive, mold needs someplace dark, damp, and at room temperature. It also needs a food source. In your home, a washing machine provides the darkness and dampness and the soap residue provides the food source. This is true for all washers, even in Bremerton, WA, but front-loaders are particularly susceptible.
Cleaning Your Washer to Remove or Prevent Mold
There are several steps you can take to remove or prevent mold and mildew. This should be repeated occasionally. Don’t wait for the mold smell to return or the residue to build back up. You can get special products to clean the washer, but the following home remedy should work just fine.
1. Clean the gasket with a solution of equal parts of water and white vinegar.
2. Make a solution of 1/2 cup baking soda and 1/2 cup water and put it in the machine’s detergent dispenser.
3. Add 2 cups of white vinegar into the drum and run a full cycle with hot water.
When this process is complete, any residue and odors that were present in the washer should be gone. Repeat if necessary.
Keep Mold Out of Your Laundry Area
When you are finished washing your dirty laundry, there are a few simple precautions that can keep mold away.
1. The presence of soap residue means that you’re are using too much or the wrong type. When it comes to soap, follow the manufacturer’s recommendations.
2. Leave the door open to let the inside of the washing machine dry. You can also wipe down the drum with a dry cloth.
3. If you have a dehumidifier, turn it on or at least make sure it is set to keep your laundry area humidity at an acceptable level.
Don’t Let a Mold Problem Get Away From You
Serious mold problems often get their start with moisture from the laundry area. If you discover that mold has spread beyond your washing machine, consider contacting local mold removal specialists to address the problem before it gets worse.
For more on Bremerton click here.
3 Ways To Deal With Commercial Rentals and Dated Piping
Check pipes frequently to prevent future flooding
An older commercial rental can require special considerations regarding maintenance. The pipes could consist of outdated materials such as polybutylene that are no longer used because of longevity concerns. Even worse, you may not receive your landlord’s permission to do any systematic overhaul to prevent future problems. Here are three ways you can maintain the property during your tenancy.
1. Maintain a Dialogue With Your Landlord
Depending on the lease agreement, some responsibilities may lie with the landlord. You should immediately inform your landlord of noticeable problems, such as leaky pipes, so the issue can be remedied or documented. By practicing diligence, you can stop the blame from being misattributed to gross negligence.
In addition, you should take photographs of the damage when it’s first noticed. You can then forward these on to the landlord to show the situation and potentially urge her to act.
2. Evaluate Risks and Watch Weak Areas
Even if you don’t own the building, you should still familiarize yourself with its structural risks and flaws. For example, your utilities could be connected with polybutylene pipes that deteriorate from the inside when exposed to tap water.
You should recommend replacing the system to the landlord if you notice multiple rusted, flimsy, old, weak or damaged pipes. By keeping on top of your rental’s wellbeing, you can prevent costly repairs and shutdowns.
3. Know Your Insurance and Responsibilities
In case your landlord is cleared of responsibility due to your lease or your own provable negligence, you should familiarize yourself with your renter’s insurance policy. By knowing your entire policy, you can utilize it effectively in dire situations. It is beneficial to evaluate and adjust your policy’s coverage to compensate for your lease’s exceptions.
Scheduled, regular maintenance of old pipes, regardless if they are polybutylene, ensures your Bremerton, WA, business remains operational. In the event that water does seep in, a damage restoration service can remove the flood and restore damaged assets. With your best efforts to maintain the rental’s condition, however, you can mitigate the risks of water damage.
For more on Bremerton click here.
Apartment Living & Damages
In an apartment community, residents will sometimes share walls from the sides, from above and below. When a water damage occurs, it can turn a small issue into a big one, fast. As a water damage could not only affect one residence but multiple residences. You never know when an emergency situation will occur, but it’s in your best interest, as well as in the best interest for other residents, to always be prepared for anything. Taking these measures today to help avoid water damages in the future.
- Stay in touch with your neighbors & property managers when there are traveling plans: Many people go on vacations throughout the year. Talk to your trusted neighbors about having your water shut off while they’re gone or, alternatively, having someone check on the apartment from time to time while you’re gone. If a water leak occurs while they’re away and no one is checking in, a small problem could potentially turn into something much worse.
- Check on appliances routinely: If the property you stay in comes with a fridge, dishwasher, and/or washer/dryer in the unit, you should closely monitor the age of the appliances as well as regularly inspecting them for cracked or damaged hoses or connections. Keep in mind that washer hoses should be replaced approximately every five years. It’s a good idea to replace washers and dryers before a problem arises. It may cost money that you didn’t want to be spending right now, but it could save you, and the property management company, a lot of money and a potential headache down the road, if handled before a loss happens.
- Fix old or damaged roofs when the weather is right: Don’t wait for a big rainstorm to find out that the roofing for your building needs replacing or to be repaired. If you feel like there is an area in your ceiling, (if you are located on the top floor,) that needs attention, make note of it to your property manager. The company managing the property should be having the complex buildings roofs looked at during the dry season to best avoid water damage in the wetter seasons.
If you are a renter or a property manager or owner and you think there might be a water damage situation, don’t forget to call SERVPRO of Kitsap County. We are dedicated to responding immediately when you contact us. A fast response lessens the damage, limits additional damages, and reduces the overall potential cost. Let us help you make your loss “Like it never even happened.”
What We Use To Help You
You will see various types of climates and ecosystems all across the world. In the Pacific Northwest, we have a wetter environment than the rest of the state which has more of a desert ecosystem. With that wetter climate, homes are more prone to moisture. When un-attended to, it can lead to mold growth. Here at SERVPRO of Kitsap County, we pride ourselves in being the premier mitigation and restoration company in our industry. To help establish and maintain that that level, we take into consideration the products and methods we use and perform to properly help you, your family, and your building structures to the best way possible.
By using our Benefect product, we have already started the trend in using a safer and still efficient method to remediate mold growth. Here are a few pieces of information from the company that created it; “Benefect - The active ingredient in Benefect is a highly specialized thyme oil that has natural germ-killing capabilities proven to be equal to the leading traditional ingredients but is Generally Recognized as Safe (G.R.A.S.) by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. The concentration of thyme oil allows Benefect to kill tuberculosis (TB) in just 5 minutes!”
Along with the main product, we also use the disinfectant variation as well for some of our services.
“Benefect Disinfectant contains botanically pure plant extracts and has been proven to kill over 99.99% of bacteria, fungi, TB, and HIV. Benefect has been approved by the US EPA as a high-level disinfectant, fungicide, tuberculoid, and Viricide (against HIV-1) that requires no rinsing or wiping after application on any surfaces including construction materials.”
The crew at SERVPRO of Kitsap County knows how hectic and scary at times, it could be to see mold growth in your home or business, but rest assured, we are here to clean up that problem “Like it never even happened.” If you have prior water damage that has resulted in mold growth or want us to come out and take a look at the mold and mildew in your home, give our staff a call today; 360-373-1290. Just remember, we are always here to help.
For more information of the Benefect products that we use, or the background information on it, check out the link here: http://benefect.com/index.php
Why Every Business Should Consider Buying a Flood Insurance Policy
When flooding occurs it can become a challenge
No place is immune from storms that can potentially cause severe damage to your business. When a destructive storm hits, insurance policies act like financial safety nets, allowing businesses to recuperate damaged or destroyed property. However, insurance companies see flood damage and storm damage as entirely different entities that require separate policies.
Examples of Storm Damage
Wind and hail are examples of natural phenomenon that can cause significant damage to your building’s exterior infrastructure. Examples of potential damage include the following:
• Loosened or detached shingles and siding
• Cracked roof surfaces
• Broken windows
• Damaged or destroyed outdoor equipment
Heavy Rainfall and Flooding
Some severe storms bring heavy rainfall which, if not drained properly, can saturate an area and cause flood damage. To be officially classified as a flooded area, the general rule is the land must be at least two acres in size and a normally dry region. An area where two or more properties are inundated with water can also be classified as a flooded zone.
Flooding can also occur inside your building, especially if the roof or windows were compromised in a storm. In this case, the distinction between flood and storm damage comes down to when the destruction occurred. While this may sound like a minute detail, it is a crucial determination for insurance purposes.
Property Insurance vs. Flood Insurance
Not all insurance policies are created equal, and there is a distinct difference between flood insurance and business property insurance. Most property insurance policies will cover damage resulting from storms, such as damaged windows, roofs and siding. However, if the storm causes flooding and the primary culprit of the damage was flood waters, your property insurance policy will likely not be applicable. Instead, you will have to file a claim on an existing flood insurance policy.
Unfortunately, not every business chooses to purchase flood insurance, creating the potential for substantial financial loss.
Purchase a Policy for Peace of Mind
When flood damage occurs, navigating the restoration and cleanup process can be challenging and timely, particularly if your business lacks adequate insurance. It’s hard to predict when the next severe storm will hit Bremerton, WA. Purchasing flood insurance can provide peace of mind, so why delay?
For more on Bremerton click here.
Why Every Tenant Should Consider Renters Insurance
Renters insurance is a must for your personal assets and out of pocket expenses incase of a fire
Renting an apartment can be an ideal living arrangement for many people in Bremerton, WA. Tenants are usually not financially responsible for their residence’s repair requirements and maintenance needs. Some landlords may require every tenant to have a renters insurance policy, but this is not always mandatory. However, every renter should consider obtaining a policy because it provides financial protection in the event of a disaster, such as an apartment fire.
Repairing the Damaged Building
In the event of an apartment fire, your landlord’s property insurance will cover the cost of the building’s repairs and restoration. While the landlord’s assets are insured, protection does not extend to tenants and their personal property.
Replacing Lost Possessions
As a tenant, your personal possessions are your responsibility and will only be insured if you purchase a renters insurance policy. If you do not have insurance and your personal property suffers significant fire damage, you will have to pay out-of-pocket to replacement everything damaged or destroyed, and this could be extremely costly.
What Renter’s Insurance Covers
A renter’s policy provides peace of mind. Many affordable options exist on the market that will protect your financial interests and help you replace personal property in the event of a variety of situations. The specific coverage of every policy differs, but most policies will help tenants replace items damaged or destroyed by the following means:
• Windstorms and hail
• Smoke damage
• Water damage from leaking pipes and overflowing water
Besides helping you replace damaged or stolen property, many renters insurance policies also cover the cost of additional living expenses, such as a hotel room, in the event you are temporarily displaced from the leased property.
A Worthwhile Investment
Renters typically value their possessions but may not take ample time to consider their combined value. In the event of an apartment fire, you could potentially lose all your personal property. Although a professional cleanup and restoration team could possibly repair some of your damaged belongings, it may be extremely costly to replace everything lost. Obtaining a renters insurance policy is the best way to financially secure your personal assets and avoid excessive out-of-pocket expenses.
For more on Bremerton click here.
How To Clean Up Sewer Damage
Sewage back up can cause damage with your home or business
You walk into your home in Bremerton, WA, and immediately you smell it. The telltale odor of sewer backup permeates the air. You find the problem and call restoration experts who specialize in sewer cleanup. After doing so, you should shut off the water and power to the area and then leave the space to keep you and your family safe from the contaminated water. When the professionals arrive, this is the process they are likely to follow.
Containing the Sewage
The first step of the cleanup process is stopping the spread of the contamination. There are several parts to this step:
• Technicians don protective gear to keep themselves safe.
• Remove and bag any affected items.
• Identify the perimeter of the area the contaminants have reached.
• Seal off the area so that microbes and bacteria do not go any further.
Removing the Water
After the damage from the flooded toilet has been identified and contained, the next step of sewer cleanup is water extraction. Using industrial pumps, technicians remove as much of the water as they can from the area. The faster water is removed, the faster the actual cleaning process can begin.
Assessing Items and Materials
Certified experts are trained to recognize which items can be cleaned and which items need to be discarded. After water is removed, they discard unsalvageable items and put others aside to be restored.
Drying the Area
At this point, nothing remains that can't be dried and saved, so the intense drying process begins. Technicians increase air flow and use dehumidifiers to completely dry the area and prevent mold growth.
Disinfecting Items and Materials
Even though the area is dry, it is still not clean. Bacteria may still be on the remaining floors and walls, so they need to be professionally disinfected. Salvageable materials and items are restored and returned to the area.
At this point, everything is dry and clean. The sewer cleanup process concludes with walls, floors and other essential items that had to be discarded being replaced.
For more on Bremerton click here.
Water Damage After a Storm
After experiencing any sort of water damage, time is of the essence for your home and you’re your belongings. Professional home restoration services can be a vital benefit for property owners who are aiming to protect not only their home, and memories, but also their investment for all its entirety. In the situation of damage from a storm, restoration needs to be assessed and dealt with promptly. Sometimes expert water restoration services may be needed in the event that moisture entered the building. Flooding, roof damage or ground water that is able to enter the building can pose a major risk to the structure, but in a bigger picture; the market value of a home.
Wind storms and the results of high wind speeds nearby can cause a multitude of damages or issues to a home. From light amounts of debris on your property, to a tree limb now sticking into your roof, even minor storm damages can cause headaches for you, as well as your wallet. Especially in situation where water intrusion occurs and goes undetected for any amount of time. Be aware of companies in your area that are reliable and certified such as a local SERVPRO company. Having a sump pump or licensed roof repair service can also be vital when it comes to ensuring appropriate remediation. From occasional water damage, to the rare instances such as damage to your roof and causing it to rain inside your home, it’s worth it to research and find the best solutions for your remediation and repairs. When attending to any damage to your building, the point of doing everything promptly and correctly is pertinent and may be just as serious when it comes to maintaining the resale value of a home.
Dealing with either initial water damages or situations created by a storm that have caused issues for your home, there are things you should always be aware of and know how to handle appropriately. Preparing for disaster can always be handy and in your favor. First and foremost, make sure you and the building occupants are safe, then attend to calling in the professionals to aid the building of its damages. SERVPRO of Kitsap County is here to help any day, at any time to make sure your building feels, and looks “Like it never even happened.”