Recent Commercial Posts
7 Tips to Prevent Mold in your Commercial Business
Why should you worry about mold in your building? According to OSHA, some mold, over time, may cause structural damage to wood along with damage to furnishings and finishes. Use the following tips to help prevent mold growth in your business.
#1: Clean Out the Refrigerator
It can be difficult to keep track of shared refrigerators. Some people will always remember to clear out their leftovers, others won’t. Old food storage containers are a perfect breeding ground for mold. Over time, mold can travel to the shelving and even outside the refrigerator. Consider instituting an office refrigerator policy. If something is left in the fridge by a certain time each week, it goes in the garbage.
#2: Look for And Repair Leaks
Leaks from plumbing, windows, roofs, and more can lead to significant water damage in your business as well as an increased risk of mold growth. If you aren’t regularly inspecting your property, it’s easy for these leaks to go unchecked until they create a larger, more costly problem. Watch for telltale signs of a leak such as lower water pressure; wet spots on the floors, ceilings, or walls; and condensation around window sills and in attic spaces.
#3: Keep It Clean
It’s easy for anyone to get caught up in work and let clutter take over his or her workspace. However, clutter creates lots of hiding spots for crumbs and dust, which are both great food sources for mold. Make sure to clear the clutter and wipe down hard surfaces regularly. Make sure to promptly clean all spills as well. Clean and sanitize break rooms and bathrooms frequently. Both rooms provide ample opportunity for mold growth. These rooms should be cleaned at least weekly depending on how regular people use each room.
#4: Turn on the AC/Dehumidifier
Leaks aren’t the only way for moisture to accumulate in your business. High humidity levels can lead to moisture and mold as well. On hot days, fans can cool you off, but they don’t do much for humidity levels. Run your AC or a dehumidifier to cut down the humidity in the building.
#5: Clean out Trash Cans
While you might switch out the liners regularly, can you remember the last time you washed out the trash cans? It’s easy for bits of food and condensation to sneak beneath liners into the can, which is all mold needs to grow. Try washing out office wastebaskets about once a month to prevent mold growth.
#6: Take Care of Your HVAC System
Your HVAC system can quickly distribute mold spores throughout your building if there is a problem. Make sure your HVAC system receives regular inspections. Sometimes moisture condenses inside air ducts or leaks drip onto ducts from ceiling tiles, which can lead to mold growth inside the ducts. Make sure to keep the HVAC drip pans clean and unobstructed. Additionally, replace your filters as needed.
#7: Slope the Ground Away from the Foundation
If the ground around your building slopes toward the foundation, water can accumulate and weaken your building’s structure. Additionally, it provides an ideal environment for mold to grow. The ground should slope away from the building. You should also make sure your building follows the local building codes for drainage. Mold is persistent. Even if you follow all the right steps it’s still possible for mold to grow and spread in your building. Fortunately, at SERVPRO of Rockingham and Augusta Counties, we have the right experience in mold remediation to make your place of business “Like it never even happened.” Unfortunately, mold doesn’t stay put, it grows quickly. You’ll want to give us a call as soon as you notice it, so we can start the remediation process. Our technicians have the training, equipment, and knowledge necessary to help locate and remediate mold efficiently. If you find mold in your place of business, call us at 540-433-6100.
Avoid a Large Loss: Tips for Preventing Frozen Pipes
Don't let cold weather sneak up on you!
Before the onset of cold weather, prevent freezing of these water supply lines and pipes by following these recommendations:
- Drain water from swimming pool and water sprinkler supply lines following the manufacturer's or installer's directions. Do not put antifreeze in these lines unless directed. Antifreeze is environmentally harmful and is dangerous to humans, pets, wildlife, and landscaping.
- Remove, drain, and store hoses used outdoors. Close inside valves supplying outdoor hose bibs. Open the outside hose bibs to allow water to drain. Keep the outside valve open so that any water remaining in the pipe can expand without causing the pipe to break.
- Check around the home for other areas where water supply lines are located in unheated areas. Look in the basement, crawl space, attic, garage, and under kitchen and bathroom cabinets. Both hot and cold water pipes in these areas should be insulated.
- Consider installing specific products made to insulate water pipes like a "pipe sleeve" or installing UL-listed "heat tape," "heat cable," or similar materials on exposed water pipes. Newspapers can provide some degree of insulation and protection to exposed pipes – even ¼” of newspaper can provide significant protection in areas that usually do not have frequent or prolonged temperatures below freezing.
Have Questions? Call Today (540) 433-6100
3 Reasons Your Commercial Toilet Keeps Flushing
Avoid Commercial Water Damage
Water Damage From Toilet
A malfunctioning toilet in your Rockingham or Augusta County commercial building can cause a variety of issues, from a repeated toilet overflow to increased monthly water bills. One common issue that commercial toilets suffer from is repeated flushing when water runs into the unit without stopping. There might be several reasons for this problem and knowing what they are may help you remedy the problem quickly.
1. Dirty Gasket
The gasket within a commercial toilet’s flushing apparatus can become caked with sediment over time. This can be especially common if you live in an area with hard water. Sediment may also affect the gasket’s weep hole and how well the gasket’s suction works. You can remove and clean the gasket and weep hole, which may resolve the continuous flushing.
2. Broken Flapper
Sometimes the flapper, or seal, on the inside of the toilet may become brittle or old. When this happens, the seal can become misaligned and cause the toilet to fill constantly. This constant filling may eventually cause a toilet overflow or a toilet flood, which can cause water damage to your building and require the services of a flood remediation and water cleanup company. The seal is located inside the flush canister, and if it is cracked, you may need to have it replaced.
3. Leaking Toilet Tank
A leaking toilet tank may cause repeated flushing, as the unit will sense it needs to fill due to a water loss. However, you can stop a toilet from leaking with a simple test. Add three drops of red food coloring into the water of the tank and wait about twenty minutes. If the water in the toilet bowl is red when you check it again, this means the toilet tank has a leak and you will need to have it repaired.
Water Damage or Flooding? Call Us Today (540) 433-6100
Commercial Water Restoration Presents Unique Challenges
SERVPRO of Rockingham and Augusta Counties has the training, experience, and equipment to handle large commercial flooding or water damage emergencies. Whether your water emergency occurs in a small office building or big box store, we will respond quickly to mitigate the damage and manage the restoration project through to its completion. Learn more about our training and certifications.
Dangers of Electrical Fires
SERVPRO electrical tip for outlets
Like residential homes, commercial buildings are at risk of electrical fires and you should take precautions to prevent these hazards. Electrical equipment plugs and wiring can all cause a fire. Older buildings can have outdated wiring which poses additional risks. If you are in doubt, call a professional electrician.
Here are a few precautions you can make to minimize your risk of an electrical fire:
- Outlet & power cords – Make sure outlets are updated and in good working condition. The outlet should not be warm to the touch or make cracking sounds and should fit snugly. Have a professional repair them if you experience any issues.
- Cords & Wiring – Do not use a damaged cord. If your cords are frayed, pinched or pierced, throw them out. Damaged, worn, cracked or corroded electrical wires can increase the chance of electrical fires.
The National Fire Protection Agency suggest calling a qualified electrician if you experience:
- Frequent problems with blowing fuses or tripping circuit breakers.
- Discolored or warm wall outlets
- Flickering or dimming lights
- Sparks from an outlet
Call SERVPRO of Rockingham and Augusta Counties if you do experience an electrical fire in your business at (540) 433-6100.
Restoring Your Rockingham or Augusta County Commercial Property After A Water Damage Event
Fire damage can strike anywhere at any time.
Flooding and water damage events on commercial properties are often complex with numerous issues that require a knowledgeable and flexible response. Whether you’re dealing with a relatively small water cleanup scenario or a large-scale event, we here at SERVPRO work quickly to assess each unique situation and isolate the damaged area. In many instances, normal operations can continue in a temporary space while we restore your facility.
Restoring Commercial Properties Presents Unique Challenges
Our professionals are trained to be mindful of legal and environmental concerns and strive to fully restore the damaged area while working within your budgetary constraints. We understand that every hour spent cleaning up is an hour of lost revenue and productivity. So, when an emergency situation arises in your business, give us a call and we’ll be there fast with the help you need.
About SERVPRO of Rockingham and Augusta Counties
SERVPRO of Rockingham and Augusta Counties specializes in the cleanup and restoration of commercial and residential property after a water damage event. Our staff is highly trained in property damage restoration. From initial and ongoing training at SERVPRO’s corporate training facility to regular IICRC-industry certification, rest assured our staff is equipped with the knowledge to restore your property.
- AMRT - Applied Microbial Remediation Technician
- ASD - Applied Structural Drying Technician
- ECTP - Employee Certification Training Program
- IICRC Certified Firm
- RRRP - Lead-Based Paint Activities and Renovation
- WRT - Water Damage Restoration Technician
- CRT - Color Repair Technician
Fire Safety Tips for the Workplace
Ensure that smoke alarms and sprinkler systems are installed, working properly, and are not blocked.
GENERAL PRECAUTIONS IN THE WORKPLACE
Eliminate workplace fire hazards:
- Damaged electrical outlets, cords, cables, etc.
- Overloaded outlets and circuits
- Combustible objects in unsecured locations (included excessive trash and recycling)—keep these far from electrical equipment!
- Fire exit obstacles
Keep workspace and equipment clean, dry, and well-ventilated, and especially clean of oil and dust.
Prepare for emergencies:
- Follow workspace protocol and guidelines to ensure safety and health; know and understand rules and procedures concerning fire emergencies.
- Ensure that smoke alarms and sprinkler systems are installed, working properly, and are not blocked.
- Conduct regular fire drills.
Employers should follow these workplace fire safety tips:
- Post clear fire escape plans on every level.
- Educate all employees on emergency procedures, exit locations, escape routes, fire alarms and drills, and the use of fire extinguishers.
- Conduct regular drills.
- Install and properly maintain all fire safety equipment.
- Provide for disabled employees.
HAZARDOUS ELECTRICS AND EQUIPMENT
Use only electrical products evaluated by a nationally recognized laboratory (i.e. UL).
Immediately replace damaged, hazardous equipment:
- Look out for anything that appears overheated, smells strange, or delivers an electrical shock.
- Replace all damaged, worn, frayed, or old wires.
Only use three-prong plugs in three-slot outlets (and, similarly: two-slot plug into two-slot outlets).
Equipment that emanates substantial heat should be at least several feet away from combustible surfaces and objects.
- Heaters must include a thermostat control mechanism.
Fires Cause Around $10 Billion In Damage Per Year. Direct property loss due to fires in the U.S. was an estimated $10.6 billion in 2001. (2)100 Firefighters Die Each Year. About 100 firefighters are killed each year in duty-related incidents. (6)
- Know and follow an established emergency and evacuation plan.
- Eliminate potential fire hazards.
- Keep the workspace clean, dry, and free of unnecessary clutter and combustible materials and liquids.
- Maintain clear and easy access to all exits.
- Install and maintain all essential fire safety equipment.
- Follow a no-smoking policy within the workplace.
SMOKE ALARMS: A NECESSITY, NOT AN OPTION
Invest smoke detectors for every room or office.
- Install dual sensor smoke alarms; make sure they contain both ionization and photoelectric smoke sensors.
Test your smoke detectors(and sprinkling system) once a month.
Replace the batteries at least once a year (possible exception: non-replaceable 10-year lithium batteries; still, be sure to test them); many manufacturers also encourage a replacement of the smoke detectors after a decade.
Never disable a smoke alarm.
Consider smoke alarms for the disabled.
- Audible alarms (pauses between the siren wail allow for auditory communication) are available for the visually impaired; visual alarms (with a flashing light or vibrating pad) are available for the hearing impaired.
A NO-SMOKING ZONE IS LESS OF A DANGER ZONE
Keep the workspace a no-smoking zone. If you must smoke, smoke outdoors, and always ensure that you properly extinguish the cigarette in a sand-filled can, or drown cigarette butts and ashes in water.
- Never throw away hot cigarette butts or ashes without attending to them properly.
Be alert and then alert others. If you smell or spot fire or smoke, bring it immediately to attention.
Never smoke where oxygen is being used; for instance, in a hospital room or hallway, or at a nursing home. Even if the oxygen is turned off, the building is much more vulnerable—oxygen can be explosive and will only serve to fan the flames.
IN CASE OF FIRE: FOLLOW THE EVACUATION PLAN
Immediately call 911 in case of a fire.
Know and understand the fire emergency and evacuation plan with these workplace fire safety tips:
- Plan at multiple escape routes from as many locations as possible.
- Check the condition of fire ladders and fire escapes; ladders should be collapsible and have been evaluated by a nationally recognized laboratory (i.e. UL);
fire escapes need to be stable, secure, and easily accessible.
- Ensure that windows don’t become obstacles; glass should be openedeasily and screens should be swiftly removed.
Never use the elevator. Walk—don’t run—down the stairs.
If you cannot evacuate,
- Remain calm and put as much distance as possible between yourself and the fire.
- Seal all cracks with wet materials (towels, jackets) to prevent smoke from seeping into the room.
- Wait at the window; shout for help and signal your location by waving the most visible object
- Open the window for air, but try not to break it; you may need to close it if smoke begins to seep in.
Practice; can you feel your way out of the office and building with your eyes closed, or in the dark? Do you know multiple escape routes? Do you know the low windows from which you could jump? Do you instinctively use the back of your hand to feel a door’s heat, and do you remain crouched down as close to the floor as possible?
Restoring Your Harrisonburg/Rockingham County Commercial Property After A Water Damage Event
Commercial Water Damage Events Present Unique Challenges
Flooding and water damage events at Harrisonburg/Rockingham County commercial properties are often complex with numerous issues that require a knowledgeable and flexible response. Whether we’re dealing with a relatively small water cleanup scenario or a large-scale event, we work quickly to assess each unique situation and isolate the damaged area. In many instances, normal operations can continue in a temporary space while we restore your facility.
Restoring Commercial Properties Presents Unique Challenges
Our professionals are trained to be mindful of legal and environmental concerns and strive to fully restore the damaged area while working within your budgetary constraints. We understand that every hour spent cleaning up is an hour of lost revenue and productivity. So when an emergency situation arises in your business, give us a call and we’ll be there fast with the help you need.
About SERVPRO of Harrisonburg/Rockingham County
SERVPRO of Harrisonburg/Rockingham County specializes in the cleanup and restoration of commercial and residential property after a water damage event. Our staff is highly trained in property damage restoration. From initial and ongoing training at SERVPRO’s corporate training facility to regular IICRC-industry certification, rest assured our staff is equipped with the knowledge to restore your property.
Your Business Matters To Us
SERVPRO also helps Commercial Businesses
Did you know SERVPRO also helps Commercial Businesses?
We’re always ready to help - you can trust the SERVPRO brand....
Indoor quality is something that needs to be maintained in a business, and we’re here for your needs!
Proper Maintenance Saves You Money!!
- World Health Organizations say that poor indoor air quality costs $60 billion in employee sick leave and lost production
- People most at risk include infants and children, pregnant women, elderly, people with compromised respiratory system, and people with weakened immune systems
Control Moisture and Reduce Mold
Act within the first 24-48 hours...
- Correct any water leaks or standing water
- Remove standing water under cooling coils or air handling units
- Properly maintain humidifiers, if used
- Replace wet or visible moldy insulation materials
Ways to Impress Your Customers
- Clean dirty and stained ceilings
- Scrub lobby, furniture and draperies
- Establish maintenance plans for furnishings, carpets, and draperies
- Clean HVAC and air duct system
The SERVPRO Difference
- Reduce potential for mold growth
- Remediate bacteria, fungi, and mold
- Eliminate offensive odors
- Written inspections and estimates
You Can Trust SERVPRO Brand Because....
- Over 1,600 Franchises in 48 states means more locations
- More locations means faster responses
- Faster responses means faster mitigation and less damage
- Faster mitigation means less cost
We give quotes to any situation that may occur to you, we are also open 24/7...365 days a year.
No Job Too Big
The SERVPRO Commercial Large Loss Division is composed of our best of the best in restoration. Our elite large-loss specialists are prequalified and strategically positioned throughout the United States to handle any size disaster.
Every large loss is supervised by a commercial operations manager to help ensure seamless communication and timely mitigation.
At SERVPRO, the difference is our ability to dispatch trained production professionals and cut costs through the strategic placement and oversight of temporary labor. Get the professionals by calling SERVPRO of Harrisonburg/Rockingham County at (540) 433-6100 for all your commercial cleanup, mitigation and restoration needs. SERVPRO of Harrisonburg/Rockingham County is one of Virginia's premier smoke, fire and water cleanup companies.
Clients for the Commercial Large Loss program include the following:
- The Hospitality Industry
- Property Managers
Rapid response can mean the difference between restore vs. replace
Rapid response can mean the difference between restore vs. replace
The first few hours after commercial water damage can be the most vital. Rapid response will many times be the determining factoring between restoring and replacing. The photo captioned is what the employees of this office building saw when they came into work one morning. A quick call to SERVPRO and a crew was on their way. Clean up began with extraction of carpets. Other crew members moved and blocked contents. Even more crew members removed the vinyl cove base and drill holes in the lower drywall to allow airflow to more efficiently dry the walls. Holes are always punched below the trim line to allow for the new trim to cover the holes. A manager set up drying equipment as he walked through to ensure nothing was overlooked and properly document the job for the insurance company. The SERVPRO team came in like a wave, just as the water did a few hours before.
- The water damage was discovered on a Friday morning at 6:00AM.
- The crew arrived at 7:45AM.
- The work was completed by Friday evening at 6:30PM.
- Crew returned Saturday and Sunday to take moisture readings and reposition drying equipment for optimal drying.
- Crew arrived 6:00AM Monday to install new cove base and remove equipment.
- By Monday 9:00AM, the property was put back together and it was business as usual for this company. Employees that had off that Friday never even knew anything had happened!
If you have water damage in your commercial property, remember that a quick response from SERVPRO of Harrisonburg/Rockingham County can make the difference from an inconvenient weekend to weeks of construction and loss of use. Call us today to help make it “Like it never even happened.”
Protecting Your Commercial Property
PROTECT YOUR COMMERCIAL BUILDINGS FROM WATER DAMAGE:
Turn off Water Valves to Prevent Damage in Commercial Buildings
When water damage occurs in a multi-story building such as office buildings or hotels, turning off the water supply at the main valve is vital to avoid additional damage. Identify where the broken pipe is located to determine if a water valve is near the source rather than on a lower floor or utility closet. Turning off water valves as quickly as possible prevents primary damage to surfaces in addition to secondary damage from mold and mildew. Business owners can prevent slow leaks in buildings by tracking water bills each month and maintaining safety protocols in boiler and water heater rooms.
Avoid Business Interruption to Prevent Financial Losses
Preventing extensive property damage also helps to avoid business interruption loss along with the possibility of creating liability claims from nearby property owners, tenants or guests. Maintenance personnel in businesses are responsible for turning off the main water valve during normal hours of operation before beginning remediation services. However, when leaks happen at unusual times such as during the night or on weekends, tenants, employees and managers do not know what to do.
Important Emergency Water Damage Guidelines
Having a SERVPRO of Harrisonburg/Rockingham County Emergency Readiness Plan (ERP) in place at businesses can help to reduce losses.
Visually Inspect the Property:
At least once a month, assess various areas of a building to look for signs of moisture from leaking pipes and fixtures. Check water distribution systems, including bathroom fixtures, kitchen plumbing and drinking fountains, especially devices that are old and degraded. Keep a record of plumbing fixtures that are prone to having frequent failures such as galvanized or steel pipes and connectors. Inspect decorative water fountains, swimming pools and hot tubs at the same time. Understand the particular areas of a property that do not have drainage systems such as parking garages. In a water leak emergency, lower levels of a building without drains require portable or fixed sump pumps.
Step Two: Mitigation Plans
By having a SERVPRO of Harrisonburg/Rockingham County Emergency Readiness Plan can help establish SERVPRO of Harrisonburg/Rockingham County as your mitigation company of choice. We will have the information we need to begin a timely dry-out to reduce any secondary damage that may occur. It also allows for the creation and implementation of a loss mitigation plan for employees to follow when a disaster occurs.
The ERP will include a map or diagram showing the location of water shutoff valves and exactly how to close the devices. Pictures of the shut-off values will also be included. If a building has a sprinkler system for fires, then it is often necessary to turn off these devices to avoid damage from water or chemicals. For confidential or sensitive areas of a building, make a list of the designated employees who can enter the space.
Step Three: Emergency Contact List
A SERVPRO of Harrisonburg/Rockingham County Emergency Readiness Plan will contain an up-to-date 24-hour emergency contact list with names and telephone numbers for:
• The business maintenance staff
• Local water company after-hours number
• Water mitigation service vendors such as SERVPRO of Harrisonburg/Rockingham County
• Building agent or broker
A business interruption plan should be standard procedure for any commercial building. The SERVPRO of Harrisonburg/Rockingham County ERP works well with any existing plan and the app allows the managers to have all this information in the palm of their hands.
Call SERVPRO of Harrisonburg/Rockingham County at (540) 433-6100 for your no cost Emergency Readiness Plan.
The SERVPRO Ready Plan
It is estimated that up to 50% of businesses that close due to a disaster...never reopen!" Are you prepared for the next disaster?
It is estimated that up to 50% of businesses that close due to a disaster, such as fire and flood never reopen! Of the businesses that survive, the overwhelming majority of them had a preparedness plan in place.
Are you “Ready for whatever happens?”
Preparation is a key component for making it through any size disaster, whether it’s a small water leak, a large fire, or an area flood. The best time to plan for such events is not when the event happens, but well before it happens.
The SERVPRO® Emergency READY Plan serves as a quick reference of important building and contact information or can be an ideal supplement to any well-designed emergency preparedness or existing contingency program. Rather than simply reacting to disaster situations, most prefer proactive measures to establish a relationship with a restoration services company.
By working with SERVPRO of Harrisonburg/Rockingham County to develop your personalized Emergency READY Plan your business will receive the benefit of over 30 years of experience in reducing the impact of any natural or man-made disaster. SERVPRO of Harrisonburg/Rockingham County is a leader in water and fire damage response for the greater Harrisonburg/Rockingham County area and can help you quickly get your property back in working order.
Call our office at 540-433-6100 to learn more on how to set up this profile for your facility and get prepared before disaster strikes!