Flooding at Your Place of Business
Preparing for a flood is one of the smartest things that a business owner can do, even if they are not in an area typically prone to flooding. Statistically, 90% of natural disasters involve flooding and commonly impact areas that are not usual flooding targets.
Increasing your emergency preparedness by planning for a flood is a great idea not only for the safety of yourself and your staff but also for the continuity of your business. By planning in advance and preserving documentation, you can be more prepared to reopen after the flooding passes.
How to Prepare
It is not uncommon for business owners to not know where to start on flood preparations, but thankfully there are many resources out there. Some things to do include:
- Use the FEMA Flood Map and locate your building in order to determine any geographical risks you might face.
- Place copies of important documents in a secure location you will be able to access following a flood.
- Educate employees on your official flooding action procedures, which will ensure everyone knows what their role is in a flood scenario.
- Identify evacuation routes from various locations around the building and host regular drills.
- Consider the idea of adding flood insurance to your business policy.
- Store non-perishable food and water in case you face wait times for emergency personnel to arrive.
- Raise up any valuable electronics out of the water’s path.
How to Decide What Documents to Copy
When it comes to copying documents, it is better to have anything you think you might need instead of failing to remember something. Some important things to include are:
- An outline of your business continuity tasks
- Means of contact for any staff members and third-party services you may need to contact
- Your insurance agent’s contact information
- Detailed steps for recovering computer files that have been backed up
- Financial documents such as bank account information
If your business has experienced a flood, we are always here to help. Call us at 805-733-8911 to get our team of professionals to your business quickly so you can get back on track.
Why You Need Deodorization After a Fire
Smoke and Fire Deodorization
Strong smells often linger after having a fire. The type of smells that develop are determined by the type of material that was on fire or smoldering. A hot fire that burned natural building materials will smell different than that of a protein fire from frying or a slow smoldering fire that burned plastics and rubber. These odors can cause years of problems if they are not handled by a professional. At SERVPRO of Lompoc we employ a multi-step approach to deodorization.
The first step in deodorization is to find the source. In the case of a fire the area may be obvious, however there are many causes of odor that may not be easily noticed. Once the source is found by our trained technicians we must remove it.
The next step in the process is to clean the effected areas. Many of the soot particles are deposited both on and often inside certain building materials depending on how hot the fire was. Our technicians are trained on different cleaning strategies dependent on the surface to be cleaned and the soils deposited.
We employ a combination of pairing and masking deodorization techniques depending on the situation. Hot fires open the pores of building materials where foul smelling soot can be deposited. When the fire is extinguished and the materials cool down, the pores of these material shrink, thus trapping odor molecules inside. In such cases we will use a pairing agent along with a Hot Thermal Fogger to reopen the pores. The pairing agent will attach to and change the odor molecule so that it no longer smells.
While sealing of wood is not always required, we will often do this on studs and structural members. One of the reasons for sealing is because these building components are often covered up by drywall, or they are located in hard to reach areas. Summer brings hot weather and as building materials heat up, these materials are capable of releasing odors. Sealing ensures that any soot not completely eliminated from cleaning remains trapped.
The Timeline of Your Water Damage Repair | SERVPRO Lompoc
The annoyance and ruination of water damage happens to U.S. homeowners a troubling 14,000 times a day. Statistically speaking, it’s happening at least once somewhere in America while you read this paragraph. And there it goes again.
Obviously, we hope your home stays bone dry as long as you live there, but should the day arise when you need emergency assistance from SERVPRO, here’s how all that will go.
Emergency Contact. When you reach out in a panic, we’ll reassure you and walk you though some guiding questions to help us understand the situation and start putting a plan together. Then we’ll set a time to meet in person. All of this will happen quickly.
Inspection and Water Damage Assessment. Once we arrive on the scene, we can flesh out the plan and stop any water that may still be flowing. We’ll make sure you know if the encroaching water has created any hazards on your property, and we’ll also give you an idea of the items or materials that will likely need replacement.
Water Removal. You’ll never get all that water out with a bucket or a regular water vacuum. That’s why we bring our pumps to make quick work of it.
Damaged Material Removal. The items that are unable to be restored can now be hauled away, expediting the process of restoration for the items and materials that remain.
Cleaning, Sanitizing and Deodorization. Water damage can leave a yucky mess. We’ll use our tools and some old-fashioned elbow grease to rid your home of unwanted stains, smells and depending on the nature of your emergency, harmful contaminants.
Drying. It’s only a short while after water invades that mold begins to grow. Even after the water is pumped out, your home will need some dehumidifying and drying out.
Monitoring. We’ll be carefully watching the entire process, making sure every box is ticked and every surface is cleaned and dried. Don’t you worry about a thing.
Repairs and Construction. Now that everything is dry and in order, we can go about the finishing touches, which may range from replacing carpet to reconstructing entire rooms. Large or small, we’ll be there to oversee every aspect of your water damage restoration.
When water damage strikes, make the call to SERVPRO for A-to-Z cleanup and restoration. We’ll make your damaged property look “Like it never even happened.”
Catch Water Damage Before It Occurs | SERVPRO of Lompoc
Nobody plans for water damage. There’s no water damage “season” we all look forward to like winter holidays—“Ooh, I hope we get a new refrigerator supply hose leak this year!”
And yet, water damage happens on occasion whether we want it to or not. And though it may not choose a defined date or time to occur, if you’re watchful, you may be able to catch some of its likely manifestations before they happen. Let’s check a few spots.
Toilets. There are only a few spots to check your toilet for leaks, and the most common are the flapper (inside the upper tank where the water flows into the bowl) and the valve seal, the rubber ring on the underside of the tank.
Appliances. Any appliance that uses water is going to use hoses and washers that may give way over time. Keep an eye on your fridge, dishwasher and especially the supply hose for your washing machine. Oh, and how old is your water heater? Units over 10 years old have been known to explode.
Clogged gutters. This is one scenario over which you can exert a great deal of control, because it’s a fairly simple matter to check your gutters occasionally and clean out the debris, dirt and leaves that would work together to cause a dam to form in your gutters. Now where’s that ladder?
Roof damage. Your roof’s job is tough. It works hard day after day, taking a beating from the elements, falling tree limbs, squirrels, all kinds of things. Eventually, even the stoutest roof will show signs of wear, and that wear will allow water to pass through to the wood frame and inside to the attic.
Pipes. Pipes can burst in the winter as frozen water expands inside, and other issues like oxidation or loose joints can cause them to fail at other times. You may even have to deal with tree roots intruding into in-ground lines between your house and the main supply at the street.
Blocked garbage disposals. Grease, potatoes and fibrous vegetable skins can all clog your garbage disposal, causing backups and potential damage. And be careful when you plunge, because if your sink’s joints aren’t fully secure (this happens often with PVC), they may separate with intense plunging.
You can’t stop every leak, even at your most vigilant. But keeping an eye on the condition of the various devices that interact with water regularly can make water damage prevention more of a likelihood.
If a water leak erupts into a big problem at home, you’ve got the best team in the business on your side. Contact SERVPRO today so we can get started.
Severe Storm Preparedness
- A severe storm is a common occurrence, but should always be revered as a possible threat. Any storm has the potential to cause significant damage or pose a threat to unprotected people. Make sure you are doing everything you can to keep your household safe.
- Knowing the difference between a watch and warning, rather it be a tornado or severe thunderstorm. Be sure to have emergency supplies stored near by and having a way to tune into emergency broadcasts to be as prepared as possible.
Be Aware of What Watches and Warnings Mean
When severe weather is on the way, local officials will generally issue watches and warnings to keep the public informed about the current conditions, so it is important to know what they mean. A storm watch is issued if conditions are particularly favorable for a storm to develop, but one has yet to occur in the area.
A storm warning is more serious, as it means storms have been spotted on the ground and are a threat to the area. During a storm watch, you can simply stay alert, but during a storm warning, you should take cover immediately
Have Ample Emergency Supplies Stored
If a storm is nearby, it is important to seek shelter and stay put until the threat passes—which is why having everything you need at home is so highly recommended. Be sure you have enough food and water packed for everyone in your family in case utilities go out, as well as flashlights and extra batteries so you have a light source. You should also have a “safe zone” in the home—somewhere you can go that is sheltered from external walls as much as possible where you can wait out the worst of the storm.
Have Multiple Ways to Tune Into Emergency Broadcasts
While most of us rely on our smartphones to get information about the weather, this method can have some drawbacks and is not reliable during severe weather. Because cell reception can be spotty during severe storms and electricity is often unreliable, make sure you have multiple ways to get alerts that do not depend on the traditional power grid. A non-electric weather radio powered by batteries or manually is often a good solution for this.
How to Prevent Moisture from Entering your Building and Causing Damage
1. Create a Physical Barrier
In order to decrease the likelihood of water and mold damage to your building, it can be helpful to put a barrier between your building and the elements. A building envelope acts as a water-resistant cover and protects your business from strong winds and heavy rains. In order for the envelope to be of use, it’s often important to make sure the envelope is securely placed around your building before a storm hits.
2. Inspect Your Building Before the Storm
Rain damage can occur seemingly without warning, and it may be necessary to contact storm restoration experts to fix the damage. However, it’s often preferable to prevent damage from occurring in the first place. By inspecting your building before a storm, you are likely to notice if there are any loose shingles, small holes or other areas where water may be able to enter your building. Inspecting the building frequently will allow you to make the necessary changes that can help to prepare your property for a disaster.
3. Clear and Reposition Gutters
If your property’s gutters are clogged or are positioned too closely to your business, the likelihood of water damage and mold growth increases. In order to avoid black mold growth and other issues related to water damage, it can be useful to clear your business’s gutters before a storm. Moving your gutters to ensure the flow of water is not directed at your building’s foundation can also be helpful.
Though storms have the potential to cause major issues for a business, preventing moisture from entering the building can make damage less likely to occur. By creating a physical barrier, inspecting your property before a storm and clearing and repositioning your building’s gutters, you can help to keep your business safe from rain damage.
As a business owner, your office is one of your company’s most valuable assets. Most companies cannot afford to close for even a few days, so what do you do if your office or storefront is hit with a flood or a fire? Your friends at SERVPRO of Lompoc deal with these type of scenarios on a daily basis, and they are your first line of defense in the event of an unfortunate disaster at your place of business.
Here are a few of the services offered by SERVPRO of Lompoc:
Water Extraction & Restoration – Water can come in from many sources; a broken pipe, heavy storm, sewer back up and even water used to extinguish a fire.
Mold Remediation – Where there is water and moisture, there is always potential for mold growth. The professionals at SERVPRO are always mindful of this and can help reduce the potential for a mold outbreak in your Lompoc business after a water loss.
Fire Restoration – A fire in your place of business can be devastating. Beyond what the fire consumes, it also leaves caustic side effects of smoke damage throughout the surrounding area. After the fire department has extinguished the fire, call us immediately. Our team of experts are ready to help bring your Lompoc area business to a preloss state, minimizing the time you have to close your doors.
If your business has suffered a fire or water loss or you have a janitorial need, give us a call today. We are always here to help, 24/7 (805) 733-8911
Board-Up services for Portland commercial properties
For commercial properties, a sudden interruption to regular operations can be devastating. SERVPRO of Lompoc offers critical emergency restoration services so that no matter the property damage, your commercial property can get back to business.
The first step to emergency restoration and secondary damage protection is securing the property. Our professionals provide Board-Up services for any properties who have compromised entries or openings after damage occurs.
Board-up services can be needed after a variety of property damage events, such as:
- Weather events like storms, tornadoes, floods, or high winds
- Vandalism, theft, or break-ins
- Rioting, demonstrations that may become unruly, or unrest
- Vehicle impacts
For commercial properties, time is of the essence. That is why fast response is a top priority for SERVPRO of Lompoc. Emergency Board-Up services are performed by our Priority Response Team, a department that operates on-call 24/7 so that someone is ready and available to provide EMG Restoration Services at any time, any day.
If your commercial property experiences intrusive property damage, call SERVPRO of Lompoc at (805) 733-8911 as soon as practical.
Kitchen fire safety
A favorite activity of many residents in Lompoc, cooking lets us show off our skill and our personalities. It also brings friends and family together, teaches our children a vital but fundamental skill, and promotes our health.
Lompoc's chefs can protect their kitchens from fire damage by exercising caution when frying foods. Oils can quickly ignite, creating instantaneous flames that can spread quickly. If this happens, turn off the stove's burners as quickly as possible. Using water in attempts to extinguish such fires rarely ends well. Instead, cover the pot to suffocate the flames, or toss several boxes of baking soda on a blazing skillet, which can extinguish the fire, if you act quickly enough.
However, it takes a tremendous amount of baking soda to accomplish this feat. The mistaken use of baking powder, or worse, flour, can create even more problems, as these ignite when exposed to too much heat. Smoking heavily, oil gives off a warning sign when becoming too hot, so reducing the temperature can effectively prevent a grease fire.
Even if a kitchen fire blazes for only a short time and efforts to extinguish it succeed, the smoke can ruin your kitchen. However, the technicians at SERVPRO combine extensive experience with intensive training, so your home always receives the protection it deserves. We can clean your kitchen and adjacent areas in your home, so it sparkles once again. Making homes feel clean and bright again, so homeowners feel “Like it never even happened,” makes our work fulfilling and highly worthwhile.
At times, structural damage to the home occurs because of a fire that raged out of control and spread, but we are always ready for such disasters. Cleaning these situations up to restoring your home through repairs or replacements makes it safe once again to enjoy cooking and providing others with delicious food from your kitchen. Removing the sooty deposits means no malodorous remnants remain to ruin the taste of your food, either.
SERVPRO of Lompoc can be contacted at our local number, (805) 733-8911, any day of the year, and at any hour. We care about those in our community and helping ensure that each family can engage in their daily activities without interruption remains one of our goals.
Smoke and Soot Odor
SERVPRO of Lompoc is an expert on restoring properties after fire damage. The first thing you think of is cleaning the debris, soot, and char damage – but the damage that can linger the longest is the smell. This is why a huge part of our restoration process after a fire is deodorization.
There are a few ways we can do this. For textiles and clothing, we have two large commercial washing machines that can deep clean large loads. If textiles still need odors removed after washing, we have what we call an “Ozone room.” An Ozone room is a containment area where contents can be stored over night where they will be deodorized using an unstable oxygen molecule. Ozone is able to destroy odor particles in materials through oxidation, and works wonders for organic odors and fire odors. It takes time to work, and must be set to operate when no persons are around.