Recent Commercial Posts
Mold Growth in your Business
Suspect Mold Growth in Your Business?
Bacteria, mold, microbes, or mildew. No business or property owner wants to hear these words. However, there could be one or more areas of your building that are beginning to show signs of colonization. Whether you had a hidden leak or the inability to regulate relative humidity inside your commercial property, you need skilled technicians on the job to handle remediation. SERVPRO of Burlington wants you to know that we have all of the training, specialized equipment, and protective gear to take care of your project from start to finish.
What You Should Know About Mold?
As a business it is vital that you know some of the inside information about mold removal. When you feel as though you have a mold issue at your business, you should know the following:
- There might be strong, musty odors telling you that mold is colonizing under carpets or behind walls.
- The onset of mold can become much worse in as little as 48 to 72 hours.
- When mold is present, it brings with it the potential for health effects. Some people are sensitive to molds.
Should you suspect a mold outbreak in your retail store, office, warehouse, or any other commercial location, it is crucial that you:
- Close down affected areas if possible.
- Make sure that any fans or your HVAC system remain off.
- Contact SERVPRO to send out a mold remediation team as soon as possible.
- Never attempt to clean the mold on your own.
- Never spray anything on the mold spores or blow air over the surfaces, as this can cause spreading as the spores become airborne.
When you call SERVPRO of Burlington you can count on our crew to be your number one choice of mold removal companies in the area. Call (319) 754-8050, and we can dispatch a crew to your property with the latest tools and EPA-registered products to begin the job.
Commercial Water Damage
Many commercial business owners know moisture is often the enemy. Water damage can do a number to your commercial property and when you find yourself in that situation you want knowledgeable people to respond quickly so you can get back to business because we understand that every hour spent waiting is an hour of lost revenue. With an average of 50% of businesses not reopening following a major disaster. Whether your business is small or large we will respond quickly to mitigate the damage and manage the restoration start to finish so we can get you and your business back up and running to make money. Not only can we restore your property back to normal but we can also restore all the contents that may have also been damaged. Our crews are IICRC certified so you can trust they have the proper skills to get the job done right. Let SERVPRO of Burlington make it "Like it never even happened."
Your commercial property’s appearance speaks volumes to your clients. So when the need arises for professional cleaning or emergency restoration services, SERVPRO of Burlington has the training and expertise to help make it "Like it never even happened."
Food Service Facilities
SERVPRO of Burlington is available 24 hours a day to get your business back up and running. Our expertise includes restoration services for fire and water damage, including electronics restoration and document drying. We are also your business’s best resource for mold remediation. Learn more about our commercial restoration services.
Whether your need is removing an odor problem or deep cleaning flooring or carpets, you can depend on a SERVPRO of Burlington Professional to get the job done right the first time. They’ll respond promptly and make your workspace look its very best. Learn more about our Commercial Cleaning Services.
How Does SERVPRO of Burlington Restore Your Property?
SERVPRO technicians use pumps and extraction equipment designed to pull water from your property. Then they use professional air movers and dehumidifiers to dry your property. The team monitors the drying process with temperature and humidity readings and makes any appropriate adjustments. This process helps prevent further water damage.
Most business owners are unaware that cleaning and restoring are scientific processes that require specialized products and extensive technical training. Our technicians can chemically test soiling’s and use appropriate cleaners to restore your property. We even test the pH of cleaned items to make sure it is balanced. Professional restoration saves owners time and money when compared to replacement.
We understand that some types of water damage emergencies are more hazardous than others. Your safety is always our concern. If the water damage is dangerous to an employee’s health, we notify all parties before we proceed, and take appropriate measures to ensure everyone's safety. All damaged areas are restored and sanitized before the team calls their work complete.
Guide to Hosting Fire Drills for your Business
Step 1: Develop your plan
You need to create the right policies and procedures. Many businesses choose to assemble a Safety Committee to create the plan.
A required minimum, your fire and evacuation plan should include:
- The preferred message for reporting/alerting fellow employees to fires and other emergencies
- Evacuation policies and procedure
- Designated safe assembly locations
- Emergency escape procedures and route assignments, such as floor plans, maps, and safe or refuge areas
- Clear roles and responsibilities for a fire, storm evacuation, or other emergency
Step 2: Educate your employees
- When your policies and procedures for fires and evacuations are in place, the next step is sharing the plan with employees. Be sure every employee receives this information when they first begin working, and review it regularly with your full team.
- The emergency plan should be documented and given to employees in written form (or another accessible form). It should be shared in person to give team members the opportunity to ask questions.
- Also, be sure evacuation routes, fire equipment, and alarm pulls are clearly marked.
Step 3: Conduct a fire drill
- Time to conduct a fire drill. Sound the fire alarm so it can be heard and/or seen by every employee.
- The purpose of the fire drill is to make sure every employee understands how to get out of the building in an emergency, and what to do when they get outside. In order to run effective fire drills, track how quickly every employee is able to exit and meet at the proper location, then work to improve your time during the next drill.
Step 4: Motivate employees to improve participation
- Even though practicing a fire evacuation plan can be life-saving, some employees simply won’t take the exercise as seriously as they should.
- Consider motivating employees to improve their preparedness and efficiency. Following a successful fire drill (one with no “casualties” where everyone meets the target time), offer an incentive that is relevant to your team, such as extra time for lunch or leaving early on a Friday.
Step 5: Run different fire scenarios
- Practice makes perfect! Conduct fire drills regularly; consistent training ensures that the right response is immediate and second-nature.
Are You Ready to Reopen?
What a crazy past few months it has been. Trying to adjust to working from home and school being cancelled has been a huge adjustment, not to mention trying to stay healthy during these unprecedented times. Recently our governor, Kim Reynolds, announced more openings for businesses in our area, previously closed because of the pandemic. While this is a great thing to hear you as a business owner may be wondering how to proceed so you can reopen safely. Let us help you out!
Whether your business has remained opened or closed we can come clean for you to help give you a little peace of mind. We are an industry leader in cleaning and restoration. Don’t hesitate to give us a call so we can help re-open your business!
Commercial Cleaning Services
While you may think of us as a fire and water restoration company we also provide commercial cleaning services. When grime, odor, and moisture challenges go beyond the scope of your regular janitorial staff, you should call SERVPRO of Burlington for your deep cleaning needs. Whether it’s removing an odor problem or deep cleaning flooring or carpets, you can rely on us to make your workspace look its very best. Listed below is the cleaning services we provide.
- Air Ducts and HVAC
- Biohazard and Sewage
- Trauma and Crime Scene
- Carpet and Upholstery
- Drapes and Blinds
- Ceilings, Walls, and Hard Floors
- Odor Removal and Deodorization
We have the specialized training and products to get your property back to business. If you have any questions or want to schedule an appointment don’t hesitate to call our office at 319-754-8050.
Causes of Commercial Water Damage
While a massive storm can wipe out power lines, flood offices, and shut down businesses for days at a time they aren’t the only causes of flood and water damage. Below are some of the typical causes of water damage to commercial buildings.
- Windows- Water damage can be caused by windows that aren’t properly sealed. It can cause moisture to seep in, which can lead to mold build-up and warped wood and drywall.
- Damaged Pipes- Broken pipes can stem from many reasons, such as changes in pressure, deteriorated water supply lines and sewer drains, and cold weather (freezing temps can cause pipes to burst).
- Malfunctioning Sprinkler Systems- Signs of sprinkler leaks include wet surfaces like drywall and carpets, presence of mold and mildew, and standing water. Sprinklers can definitely come in handy during a fire emergency but they can also cause flood damage if they are faulty.
Should your business experience commercial water damage, SERVPRO of Burlington, has the advanced equipment and training to get your business back up and running.
Commercial Property Shut Offs
These are the tags we can attach to your gas, water, or electricity so they are easily distinguishable on which is which.
Knowing where your shutoffs are in your commercial building could save you thousands of dollars in unnecessary damage and repairs.
Relying on the fire department to come in, know where the shut off is for the water, gas, and electricity to the buildings once a loss has occurred could add thousands more.
Knowing where your shutoffs are and clearly marking them enables the building owner to shut off water several minutes before first responders can.
In the case of sprinklers that malfunction and turn on, just 1 minute less of water flowing could cut days off of a drying project.
If you don't already, have SERVPRO of Burlington come in and create an Emergency Response Plan of where the following shutoffs are:
Commercial buildings often times require advanced training and equipment to dry and repair.
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 is an hour of lost revenue and productivity. When an emergency situation arises in your business, give us a call and we'll be there fast with the help you need.
Commercial Carpet Clean
So while you may know us as a leader in the fire and water restoration industry we also perform general carpet cleans for businesses.
Our professional cleaning can address moderate and heavy stains in your carpets. How often you’ll need professional cleaning depends on traffic, type and color of carpeting. We will work with what works with your schedule. We can even come in after hours to complete the work so as to minimize any business interruption. Our best advice is to clean carpets before they become totally saturated with soil or a stain has time to set. Waiting until carpets look really dirty before cleaning may cause them not to be restored to their former appearance. Dirt builds up in layers, and when a carpet looks dirty you are only seeing the dirt at the tips of the fibers. More dirt is hiding below the surface down near the base of the pile, causing damage to the carpet. Call SERVPRO of Burlington today to set up your carpet cleaning appointment!
Commercial Fire Damage
One of the most destructive experiences to a commercial building and business is fire. Fire could result in it being closed down and unable to be used for your business. SERVPRO of Burlington understands the need to clean and restore as quickly as possible. We have trained specialists that can assist in developing a plan to get you up and running quickly and efficiently. At some sites with minimum damage we can clean and restore with the business still safely open. At other sites the business must close for safety as we remove and repair unstable structural damage that can be a real hazard to your customers or employees. Damage from glass, metal, charred wood, or unstable ceiling structures could cause personal injury. SERVPRO of Burlington takes safety seriously and will secure the damaged area to protect your business. You can count on SERVPRO of Burlington to help you return to normal.
Commercial Sewer Backups
Water from sewer system backups should be considered very dangerous due to the water being grossly unsanitary and it also may contain bacteria and viruses that could cause serious illness. This is referred to as black water and any contact should be avoided. This kind of damage can definitely take a toll on your business and may even force you to close for a period of time. Should you happen to have this kind of emergency it is best to rely on the professionals at SERVPRO of Burlington. We respond 24/7 and have the special training and equipment needed to safely clean your sewer backup and get your business back up and running in a timely manner. Let us help you make your sewer back up “Like it never even happened.”
Preparing your Commercial Property for a Flood
Right now in our area we are dealing with some minor flooding. With more chances of rain and all that snow from up North eventually headed our way I want to provide you with some tips to help protect your commercial property from a flood.
Check your insurance plan- Most policies don’t cover flood damage and the loss of income that can result. So check and see if it is possible for you to add flood coverage.
Basements are vulnerable to flooding. So if you have a basement caulk any cracks on interior walls, extend downspouts, and re-grade the landscape so water runs away from the building. You can also install a sump pump to protect against seeping groundwater or minor floods. If water is a recurring problem, apply a waterproof sealant to foundation cracks, framing joints, and the floor.
Regularly clean your gutters and storm drains.
Keep backup copies of important documents. These documents can include but not limited to insurance documents and vendor contact information.
Prepare ahead of time a map showing where key equipment is and know how to shut off the mains for electrical, fuel, and water supply.
Last but not least, don’t wait to move or act. Heed official advice for evacuations or other measures and carefully consider the best evacuation routes.
Commercial Fire Preparedness
Office fires lead to millions of dollars of property damage every year. This is why it is important to make sure your business is prepared in case disaster strikes.
Maintenance- Many fires are caused by equipment and machinery that is old, poorly repaired, dirty, or otherwise unmaintained or defective. Regular maintenance checks are important so that you can catch any problems before they cause bigger issues.
Proper Safety Equipment- Install automatic sprinklers and extinguishers in your commercial building just in case a fire does happen as this will help to lessen damage. Also make sure all employees know how to use the fire extinguishers correctly. It is also important to have clearly marked exit signs so you and your employees don't struggle to find the way out during a fire.
Watch for Fire Hazards- Keep an eye out for fire hazards such as faulty wiring and replace if found. Also store flammable materials appropriately and keep escape routes clear and free of clutter.
Emergency Procedures- Make sure your business has a fire safety plan and if not develop one. It is important to review this plan with your employees on a regular basis so they are prepared in case of an emergency.
SERVPRO of Burlington can create what’s called an Emergency READY Profile for your business. When disaster strikes you don’t want to have to fumble around trying to find numbers for important contacts such as your gas or water company. The ERP is a detailed assessment of your building, inside and out. We take pictures and put all important contact information in one spot so in your time of need all that information is readily available. Contact us today to set up an ERP for your business.
Should a fire happen at your building call the professionals at SERVPRO of Burlington. We will work to make it "Like it never even happened."
Protecting your Fire Sprinkler System Pipes
In a previous post I wrote about the different types of fire sprinkler systems so for this one I want to dive deeper into how to protect these pipes from freezing. Typically these type of pipes get pushed to the back of your mind but these are just as important to keep protected also.
- If you lose heating in your building and it cannot be restored immediately it is important to shut off your fire sprinkler system and completely drain it.
- Properly insulate any of these pipes that are located in exterior walls, unheated spaces, or ones that are exposed to extreme cold weather. It is recommended you use heat tracing that is UL-listed.
- Drain any piping that is not required during the winter months, if possible.
- Regularly inspect your fire sprinkler system to make sure they are in good operating condition.
Should you run into an issue where these pipes break and cause water damage don't hesitate to call the professionals at SERVPRO of Burlington. We are available 24/7 and will help return your business to normal.
Commercial Weather Preparedness
If you own a commercial building or run a business it is important to have a plan in place in case severe weather strikes. Having a plan helps you to protect your building, your employees and any customers, and your equipment. Listed below are some helpful planning tips to keep your business up and running during any kind of severe weather.
- Inspect your building for any kinds of weaknesses, such as cracks near doors and windows or any loose trim that has the potential to blow off and injure someone.
- Clear snow and ice regularly from your entryways, sidewalks, and roofs. You don't want to take the chance of a customer slipping and falling outside.
- Make sure your business's insurance coverage can cover any damages that may occur from severe weather and update if necessary.
- Compile important numbers such as the fire department, insurance company, and electrician just to name a few. This is where an ERP can be helpful as the program contains all that information.
- Review your equipment and systems that keep your business running, such as computers and manufacturing equipment.
Should you run into any damage after the weather has cleared don't hesitate to call the professionals at SERVPRO of Burlington.
Fire Sprinkler Systems
If you own a commercial property it is important to have a fire sprinkler system installed if there is not already one. Most sprinkler systems are designed to only release water from pipes when temperatures rise and will provide an appropriate amount of water to extinguish fires before they continue to grow and spread and cause more damage. These systems also have the ability to reduce how much smoke is produced from a fire. There are four different systems that can be installed and below I will explain the difference between each one.
- Pre-action sprinkler systems don't have water in the pipes until an actual emergency occurs. An electronically operated valve holds the water back and the pipes are filled with pressurized air or nitrogen. These systems are typically used in facilities with truly valuable items.
- Wet pipe sprinkler systems are just like they sound in that the pipes are constantly filled with water, allowing them to react quickly in the event of a fire. These are typically found in high-rise buildings.
- Dry-pipe sprinkler systems are filled with pressurized air and when a fire happens this pressurized air is released and the water is allowed to flow from the control valve outside the protected area.
- Deluge sprinkler systems sometimes use water to put down the flames but will often use dry chemicals or foam. The reason for this is because these systems tend to be used in industrial facilities since they tend to have more highly combustible materials. Due to this the sprinkler system will also have multiple sprinklers because due to the combustible materials a fire could spread a lot quicker.
Commercial Document Restoration
Not only are we a fire and water restoration company but we can also restore any important documents that may have been damaged due to fire or water. This service is a huge benefit to medical facilities, law offices, and other businesses where documents are very important and contain sensitive information.
We use innovative vacuum freeze-drying techniques to dry your valuable documents. This process is the only method approved by the National Archives and Records Administration and the General Services Administration.
Along with paper documents we can also dry books and magazines, manuscripts and files, photographs, x-rays, blueprints and maps, and parchment. In a lot of water damage situations, these type of documents will be exposed to bacteria, viruses, pesticides, or other harmful chemicals. We use a gamma irradiation process to safely and effectively sterilize your documents.
Along with the services listed above we can also convert your paper files and photos to digital formats. Doing so can save you storage space and you will have access to your records at the touch of a button. Most importantly, you'll have digital copies that can't be lost in a flood or fire.
Don't hesitate to call SERVPRO of Burlington to not only help restore your business but your important documents as well. We can make it "Like it never even happened."
Vandalism to a Commercial Property
Vandalism is an action involving deliberate destruction of or damage to public or private property without the owner's permission. According to the Urban Institute, vandals typically strike during the late evening hours when business property is unattended. A majority of acts of vandalism are crimes of opportunity and buildings are usually hit because they are unprotected and easily accessible.
Vandalism can affect your property in many ways. It can damage your property which in turn requires time, effort, and money to repair. It can also cause your business to lose income if what was vandalized is essential to your operations and cannot be used. Graffiti and other types of defacement can have a negative effect on your company's image. Damaged property may be unattractive to potential buyers or tenants which can lower the value of your property.
The following are some ways you can help prevent vandalism happening to your property.
- Make sure you fix the problem as soon as possible. Doing this sends a message that you care about your property and won't tolerate the vandalism.
- Your police department can't respond to crimes if they don't know about them so make sure you contact them as soon as you discover an act of vandalism.
- By sharing information with other business owners that have been vandalized you can find out if there are patterns like whether they are striking at a certain time of day or certain days of the week.
- You could start a business watch group which is about the same thing as a neighborhood watch group. Members can help reduce crime by keeping an eye on each other's property.
- Properties that are kept clean and free of trash may not be as appealing to vandals as properties that aren't well maintained.
- Making sure your property is well-lit at night can help prevent vandals from defacing your property.
- Installing cameras can help police should a vandalism happen to you. Police can use the recorded video to help catch the perpetrators.
- Installing break-resistant glass can make it difficult for vandals to penetrate.
- Consider installing fencing or planting shrubbery to deter individuals from striking your property.
- Should a vandalism happen to you call SERVPRO of Burlington. Our trained professionals will respond quickly and along with removing spray-painted graffiti from exterior walls we can also clean driveways, walkways, asphalt, metals, wood, glass, plastic, and masonry. We can make it "Like it never even happened."
Commercial Duct Cleaning
While you do general maintenance on your building you want to make sure you check your HVAC system to see if it needs a cleaning. Regular HVAC cleanings are important for several reasons.
Cleaning your system can improve the quality of indoor air. While filters may catch a lot of stuff there is still a considerable amount of dust that can settle in the ducts and when this happens that dust then gets pushed out into the air for us to ingest. This type of cleaning also conserves energy. Due to unwanted dust and debris it makes it harder for your HVAC system to properly perform and therefore requires the use of a lot more energy. Cleaning your ducts can also save you money. When they become filled with dust and debris that can stand in the way of the HVAC system's performance which will require it to use double the amount of energy it normally would. What you may not know is that dirty air ducts can sometimes be the cause of foul odors and you don't want clients or employees coming in and smelling an offensive odor. These odors occur when a variety of smells and impurities accumulate in the ducts and circulate those odors throughout the office. Another way cleaning your ducts is beneficial is that it can reduce the growth of mold and mildew. This condensation occurs when you change between hot and cold. Another thing that you may not think would be in your ducts is bugs and rodents. This more so true during the winter months when they will go anywhere to get some warmth. Gross? I know. That's why cleaning your ducts is so important. The professionals at SERVPRO of Burlington can help.
We will come and inspect your business and can show you how much dirt is in your HVAC system. We will then do an evaluation and an inspection so we can come up with a plan for remediation which lets you as the business owner know what we are doing and a timeframe for completion.
Our certified technicians will then use professional equipment to get rid of pollutants. We will then clean all components of your HVAC system. We know that by doing this type of cleaning it can affect the operation of your business so we make sure there is the least amount of disruption possible. After we are done we will give you pictures so you can see the before and after work. Let us help you keep your HVAC system in top shape by providing regular cleanings!
Commercial Mold Prevention
Mold can be found almost anywhere. It can grow on practically any organic substance, as long as moisture and oxygen are present. Mold growth occurs when excessive moisture accumulates in buildings or on building materials. Not only can mold affect your property but it also has the potential to cause health effects. In order to prevent mold it is important to prevent moisture as that is what mold needs to grow. Below is some tips to help prevent mold at your commercial property.
1. Fix leaky plumbing and leaks in the building as soon as possible
2. Watch for condensation and wet spots and fix those problems as soon as possible
3. You can prevent moisture due to condensation by reducing the humidity in the air. It should be maintained below 60%. You can accomplish this by using air conditioners and de-humidifiers
4. Make sure your HVAC system is flowing properly and unobstructed. Also perform regular building inspections and do maintenance as scheduled
5. Vent moisture-generating appliances to the outside where possible
6. Clean and dry wet or damp spots as soon as possible
7. In areas where you have a constant moisture problem such as by drinking fountains, classroom sinks, or on concrete floors with leaks don't install carpeting
Following these tips can help prevent mold from causing a major business interruption and prevent people from getting sick. We know that every hour spent cleaning up is an hour of lost revenue so if you find yourself in a situation where you have a mold problem call the professionals at SERVPRO of Burlington. We will respond quickly to remedy the problem and get your business back up and running.
Why Fires Start in Commercial Buildings
According to the National Fire Protection Association, in 2015 there were 113,500 fires with property damages at $3.1 billion. Here are some common reasons why these fires start.
1. Arson- This is the number one cause of fires in commercial buildings. These types fires can not only result in harming innocent victims but also the dedicated firefighters who respond. These fires may be started by the owner for insurance purposes, unhappy workers, or mischievous youth.
2. Electrical and Heating Malfunctions- Frayed power cords, misused extension cords and overloaded surge protectors are the biggest issues when it comes to electrical fires. Also be sure to have your heating system checked regularly as fires can occur if they are not maintained regularly.
3. Cooking- One in four office building fires were related to cooking equipment. Cooking equipment can be to blame due to grease traps, exhaust vents, stoves, broilers, and deep fat fryers are not properly cleaned and maintained.
4. Smoking- Although you may have a smoke-free building you're not able to watch what your employees do all the time and it only takes one cigarette to start a fire.
If your business has been damaged by a fire don't hesitate to call SERVPRO of Burlington. No matter the size of your building we have the expertise to restore your building back to normal.
Commercial Water Damage
Water damage can do a number to your commercial property and when you find yourself in that situation you want knowledgeable people to respond quickly so you can get back to business because we understand that every hour spent waiting is an hour of lost revenue. Whether your business is small or large we will respond quickly to mitigate the damage and manage the restoration start to finish so we can get you and your business back up and running to make money. Not only can we restore your property back to normal but we can also restore all the contents that may have also been damaged. Our crews are IICRC certified so you can trust that they have the proper skills to get the job done right. Let SERVPRO of Burlington make it "Like it never even happened."