Recent Posts

P.A.S.S.: The Only Fire Extinguisher Technique You'll Ever Need

5/18/2022 (Permalink)

PASS method fire extinguisher You can learn to use an extinguisher in four steps and with the acronym P.A.S.S.

Four Steps In Learning How To Use An Extinguisher

One of the most important tools for fire safety in a commercial property is the fire extinguisher. It is especially useful in commercial kitchens or in businesses working with a lot of flammable materials or substances. However, as important as this tool is, fire mitigation services in Rolando, CA, explain that too few people actually know how to use the tool effectively, reducing its usefulness. You can learn to use an extinguisher in four steps and with the acronym P.A.S.S.

1. Pull
To minimize fire damage, you want to use the extinguisher correctly. Before you can use the suppressant in the canister, you need to remove the pin from the handle or nozzle. To remove the pin, you only need to pull it all the way out. Removing the pin means the tool is active.

2. Aim at Kitchen Fire or Other Small Fire
Before squeezing the handle to release the flow of suppressant, you want to aim the nozzle at the fire. Do not aim the fire extinguisher high. You want to aim at the base of the flames to extinguish the fire at the cause.

3. Squeeze
To expel the suppressant, you need to squeeze the handle together. Squeezing allows the substance in the pressurized canister to evacuate the nozzle. Be sure to squeeze the handles completely. You want to release the suppressant with as much pressure as possible.

4. Sweep
As the suppressant leaves the nozzle, sweep the head back and forth across the flames. Remember to start from the base and move upwards.
A fire extinguisher is an essential piece of safety equipment and you will likely have multiple canisters on your property. As a business owner, you should ensure that all employees know how to use the tool effectively. Talk to your team about the P.A.S.S. technique, and perhaps provide a demonstration.

4 Steps To Restoring Your Home After a Leaky Water Heater

5/10/2022 (Permalink)

closeup of a rusty and leaking water heater A leaking water heater can cause damage to your home.

After a Leaky Water Heater, Follow These 4 Steps to Restore Your Home

A leaking water heater in City Heights, CA, can quickly become an emergency. Not only is the leak likely to become worse over time, but a continuous stream of warm water can easily become a breeding ground for mold and bacteria. Luckily, you can minimize damage to your home by addressing your failed water heater as soon as you notice a problem. By following these steps and knowing what to expect throughout the restoration process, your home will be back to new in no time.

1. Shut Off the Water
It is important to stop the source of the water. First, go to the circuit box and cut the electrical power to the area. Next, turn the water supply valve on the water heater to the off position. If there are any electrical hazards, such as sockets or wires underwater, do not enter the area. Instead, turn off the water to the house and call an electrician for assistance.

2. Extract the Water
Regardless of how many gallons of water have found their way onto your floor, water damage remediation experts can quickly remove the water and dry the area. Many professionals in City Heights, CA, use specialized machines to extract the water caused by a leaking water heater. Specialists may also use industrialized blowers to thoroughly dry any remaining moisture.

3. Inspect the Broken Water Heater
Once the immediate problems have been addressed, experts will inspect your water heater to determine if it can be repaired or if it needs to be replaced. The team will explain your options and may even work with your insurance company to help streamline the repair or replacement process.

4. Work With Restoration Services
Your home must be restored to its previous condition. If your floors, walls, or other building components are not salvageable, the team may install new materials. Experts may apply new paint or make other repairs before the job is complete.
A leaking water heater can cause damage to your home. Fortunately, with a team of experts, your home can be restored to its original condition in the least amount of time.

The Importance of Corporate Resources After a Large Disaster

4/27/2022 (Permalink)

Technician wearing mask, removing wet carpet. Storm damage causes carpet damage.

After a Major Disaster, Corporate Resources Are Critical

Many disasters are simply local events that impact one or two companies. These situations include localized storm issues, a company fire or a broken plumbing system in a school or office. Other times, though, a disaster impacts a much wider area with many companies and homeowners suffering a catastrophic loss all at once. The California wildfires are a good example of this widespread damage, as are the recent floods of Midland, Michigan caused by a dam breach. At this time, the 1,700 SERVPRO franchises that operate across North America often pool their resources to help the wider community. This allows more people to be helped in a timely fashion.

Corporate Strength

In a major flooding event, local franchises can become overwhelmed. When hundreds of homes and businesses are instantaneously dealing with flooded properties, only so many can be helped by the franchises in San Diego, CA. By bringing in other professional restoration service franchises, the following benefits result:

  • Additional equipment
  • More workers
  • More expertise
  • Faster response times
  • Reduced damages

Overall, this results in a smaller catastrophic loss for the impacted community. A multitude of crews coming together means critical issues can be addressed without delays. More specialized equipment on hand enables crews to pump out standing water, dry out flooded areas of buildings and respond to dangerous situations.

Local Knowledge

In coordination with local resources, SERVPRO's Disaster Recovery Team mobilizes as needed to help with widespread storm damage and other issues. This has been a successful model to help devastated communities recover from large-scale events for many years. Communities across North America have benefitted from this pooling of valuable resources of equipment and knowledge. Whether it is a large hurricane along the coast or major flooding in the heartland, communities can count on a robust response from professionals.
A catastrophic loss can be minimized by a coordinated response. Local knowledge and corporate strength is a potent combination for handling disasters.

How To Take Care of Smoke Damage in Your Building

4/13/2022 (Permalink)

Stove damaged by kitchen fire. Kitchen fires can expand rapidly, damaging appliances beyond repair. SERVPRO is here to take care of the heavy lifting for you!

A commercial fire in San Diego, CA is an unfortunate situation for any business owner to deal with, even if it isn’t your business. Another part of the building that is not insured under your policy, for example, can still cause severe smoke damage in your area. Some business owners assume this isn’t a covered loss, when, in reality, the majority of commercial fire policies often cover similar losses. If you happen to find yourself in a situation where you have smoke damage from a fire you didn’t cause, here are a few pointers to make sure the damage gets taken care of.

Contact Your Insurance Company

The first thing you should do if you aren’t sure about what your insurance policy covers is to contact your insurer. Scanning your policy can be frustrating, especially when trying to navigate complex insurance jargon. Ask your agent or broker what your policy coverage entails, specifically regarding smoke damage. With a better understanding of your insurance policy, you will have a firmer handle on how to move forward and on what is covered, for future reference. Your insurance company may also refer you to licensed disaster restoration professionals who can treat the affected area of your building.

Choose a Reputable Restoration Company

Disaster restoration companies are a dime a dozen, and it’s important to make sure you’re choosing one with a good reputation and ethical standards. As mentioned before, your insurance company may refer one to you, but most insurers will not require you to use their recommendation.

Let the Professionals Handle It

One of the biggest mistakes you could make with smoke cleaning is to do it yourself. Without a professional background in restoration, you could end up doing more harm than good. A licensed restoration professional will assess the affected area for soot damage with state-of-the-art, high-tech equipment that will help them to determine which areas and items are salvageable and which need to be completely replaced.

3 Tips for Preventing Mold Growth in Your Business

4/6/2022 (Permalink)

Employee removes mold-damaged debris. A storm caused mold growth in this home, so our SERVPRO teams responded immediately to begin containing and cleaning!

There are many ways for professionals to remediate the impact of water damage. Mold growth can occur within 24 hours of a flood, so experts in San Diego, CA need to get to work immediately to protect your building. However, commercial property owners should invest in preventing mold in the first place rather than waiting until it actually occurs. While you may not be able to stop mold from growing entirely, you can reduce the likelihood through some simple tips.

1. Have Someone Inspect Your Building Regularly

The problem with mold is that it tends to grow in dark, damp areas of buildings. You may not visit every single corner of the building frequently, so you should hire someone to come out and inspect things every so often. An annual inspection can help greatly, and a water damage restoration expert will know what to look for.

2. Decrease Moisture Levels

Depending on the city in which you do business, the air may be naturally humid all the time. This increases the chances of mold growth, but you can decrease humidity within your own building. You should consider installing a dehumidifier in rooms that are likely to have excessive moisture. Placing these items in the bathroom and basement can help tremendously.

3. Make Essential Repairs Quickly

Leaky roofs, cracked window frames and broken foundations can all increase the likelihood of mold developing. As soon as you realize a part of the building is damaged, you need to address it immediately. Even a small leak can lead to mold if you are not careful.

Ultimately, mold prevention is entirely dependent on remaining vigilant and taking care of any problematic issues as soon as they come up. It is much easier and much more affordable to prevent mold than to get rid of it. Your employees will thank you for being so proactive in addressing water damage.

You’ve Had a Commercial Fire. Now What?

3/23/2022 (Permalink)

Fire damaged wall wrapped in plastic. SERVPRO walks with you through every step of the fire damage restoration process! In this photo, SERVPRO has contained kitchen fire damage.

Business owners in San Diego, CA have likely considered every possibility when it comes to their insurance policy. You don’t want to have to use it, but you want to make sure you have it. Those who are in the unfortunate position of having to use their fire insurance policy can often feel overwhelmed and unsure of where to start. Thankfully, these policies are built to take care of everything and allow you to simply write the checks and sign the documents. To have a better understanding of how the process works, however, we’ve included a few tips to help set your mind at ease.

1. Your First Call

Once you’ve determined the safety of your employees, and the fire department has handled the flames, your first call should be to your insurance company. They will often have a preferred disaster restoration professional, but many will also allow you to choose whichever company you may prefer. At any rate, the disaster professionals will handle the problem from this point forward.

2. Inspection and Board-Up

Once the fire restoration professionals have arrived on the scene, they will immediately begin the inspection process. One of the most important parts of this process will be identifying the assets and belongings that can be salvaged and those that cannot. They will also assess the severity of smoke, soot and fire damage, and designate areas for smoke cleaning. Once that’s out of the way, any destroyed windows or ceilings will be covered with boards and tarps to prevent further damage from the elements.

3. Water and Fire Damage Treatment

If the sprinklers in your commercial building caused severe water damage, it will be addressed first before the smoke and fire damage. This will include state-of-the-art equipment and techniques to remove moisture from walls and surfaces. These professionals are also trained to remove soot and smoke damage from the premises as part of the fire restoration process.

4. Finishing Touches

Once the damaged items are treated, the fire restoration professionals will clean and sanitize the salvageable items in the building and attempt to restore it to its pre-fire condition, including any necessary structural repairs.

4 Typical Areas Where Mold Is Found in Commercial Buildings

3/23/2022 (Permalink)

Employees remove moldy drywall. SERVPRO doesn't just remove materials affected by water damage and mold, but we get to source of the problem to prevent ongoing damage!

Even when regular cleaning and caretaking is a part of your everyday lifestyle as a building owner in San Diego, CA keeping mold away forever is near to impossible. It’s bound to show up in areas where water is commonly used and the mildew smell alone can alert you to its whereabouts. However, if no visible mold is apparent and you need to find its location before resorting to mold testing, here are four typical areas where mold can be found in commercial properties.

  • Look for mold near water heaters and air-conditioning units. When coolers are used all day, specifically in large buildings where they’re often in constant use, heavy condensation and water leaks can frequently occur. Since this water lingers and seeps into the surrounding walls or floors, mold can begin to grow in unforeseen places like under the carpet or behind drywall.
  • Search below bathroom and kitchen sinks. Bathrooms and kitchens see their fair share of consistent water usage, leaving a mildew smell without necessarily displaying visible mold to the naked eye. This is often the case because it’s hiding below the sink where any leaks can spring up, plumbing can become loose or caulking can go bad, needing replacement.
  • Check the walls beneath leaky windows. If your building in San Diego, CA sees ample rainfall every year, you’re more likely to find mold growing below your windows. Poor insulation or leaky window frames are high areas for trapped moisture.
  • Investigate basement floors or cellars that have been previously flooded. Any low-level rooms like basements that have endured flood damage leave a lot of damp walls and floor space if they’re not dried or replaced properly by professionals. Given that these areas are generally dark, receiving little sunlight or fresh air, there’s a high probability mold is present.

If no visible mold can be found and you’re intending to have mold testing done in your building, try looking in any of these typical areas where mold grows frequently. When the mildew smell can’t give away its location, any of these areas may reveal the mold you’re looking for.

The Importance of Containment During Mold Removal

3/9/2022 (Permalink)

Employee collects water from dehumidifier. SERVPRO takes every measure to ensure that excess moisture is removed from water-damaged areas!

When mold starts to spread in your San Diego, CA business after a flood or other types of water disaster, you may not be sure how to treat or remove it. Mold cleanup can be a complicated affair, and the mold may even reappear if it is not handled properly the first time. Having mold-damaged areas professionally inspected and contained is one way to ensure the problem is eradicated quickly.

Mold Can Grow Rapidly

If mold is not contained during the cleanup process, mold spores can travel through the air and into other areas, where they might find new breeding grounds. Some of the most common, unseen spaces usually include:

  • Storage space in the basement
  • Interior walls damaged by water
  • Inside of your building’s heating and cooling system

Because these spores can travel so easily, bringing in a company that specializes in mold remediation can help prevent further growth. Since mold can begin to grow in its new environment as soon as 48 hours after attaching, calling in professional services right away can be an important step in cleanup.

Mold Can Break Free From Damaged Drywall and Carpeting

As mold-damaged substances like drywall and carpeting are removed from your business during mold cleanup, the spores can become airborne. Once this happens, the fungus can attack other porous materials, such as acoustic ceilings and tile flooring. Keeping mold-infested substances contained can prevent spores from finding a new foothold in other areas of your business.

Commercial Cleansers May Not Kill Mold Completely

Calling for professional mold containment can be an important step in preventing future issues. Mold contamination may not always respond to commercial cleansers, and the mold presence in your building may require more drastic treatment. Negative air pressure and specialized chambers can isolate areas that have been affected by mold and prevent it from reforming and spreading.

Mold cleanup can be a complicated process, especially when it comes to keeping affected areas contained. Leaving these areas closed off and calling in professional mold remediation services can help prevent the spread of mold and restore your San Diego, CA business to its former glory.

3 Steps for Discussing Mold Damage With Your Insurance Company

3/2/2022 (Permalink)

Air movement devices dry out hallway. SERVPRO brings in customized equipment to help stabilize areas affected by flooding or mold and remediate excess moisture.

After a flood damages your San Diego, CA business, you may not be sure which steps to take when it comes to cleanup and filing an insurance claim. Of all the damage you might encounter, one of the most puzzling can be fungus growth. No matter the amount of mold you are dealing with or where it might have taken hold on your property, knowing how to report the issue to your insurance company can help you take the necessary steps to resolve the problem.

1. Do Not Touch the Damaged Areas

Before you call the insurance company, you might want to take photos of any mold damage you find. However, it is important that you do not physically disturb these areas. If you see mold where you cannot reach it without moving tables, chairs or equipment or possibly sending spores into the air, leave it for the insurance company to photograph and provide an explanation before you move on with filing a claim.

2. Discuss Coverage Options With an Agent

Understanding your insurance company’s policies on fungus growth and what they generally cover for your business can be an important step in filing a claim. You may want to sit down with an experienced agent and go over your current policy regarding the kind of mold coverage you can receive after you file your claim.

3. Discuss Cleanup Plans

Your insurance agent may be interested in what your cleanup plans are once you file your claim. He or she may ask if you plan to use professional mold remediation services and how you plan to handle safety issues that might relate to the process. Keeping your mold insurance providers in the loop about your cleanup efforts may assist them with processing your claim faster.

Dealing with fungus growth in your San Diego, CA business after water damage can be frustrating. However, working closely with your insurance company can help get your business up and running again with a minimum amount of hassle.

Signs, Symptoms and Causes of Indoor Mold Growth in Commercial Spaces

2/23/2022 (Permalink)

Employee cleans up mold damage. Our highly trained professionals are equipped to remediate any mold damage loss!

Indoor mold growth due to moisture is a common issue for many businesses in San Diego CA, whether it is caused by broken pipes or broken supply lines, high humidity levels or storm-related flooding events. To protect your property, you should know these key factors in recognizing risks and some methods to prevent mildew and address fungal infestations.

Sources of Indoor Mold

Mold and mildew are propagated through tiny, microscopic spores that are ubiquitous in both indoor and outdoor spaces. Moisture and oxygen are all that are required for these fungal invaders to take foothold on nearly any surface that contains an organic nutrient source. This includes food, paper and wood as well as building materials like insulation, drywall and carpeting. While major flooding events are one major source of mold issues, small leaks and even high humidity can be enough to create an ideal environment for growth.

Risk Factors

When it comes to minimizing the spread of aggressive mildew or mold strains, early detection is essential. While mold can take hold nearly anywhere in a building, these are common areas to inspect for visible signs:

  • Tile grout and wallpaper seams
  • Window sills
  • HVAC drip pans
  • Ceiling corners

Wall switch plates

Additionally, any areas that show evidence of water damage should be monitored carefully. In many cases fungal colonies grow behind the scenes, whether behind wallpaper or tiling or within insulation and drywall, rotting structural elements from the inside out.

Remediation Processes

Whether you only notice a distinctive musty smell or your building is having issues with water damage from broken pipes or flooding, it is important to contact a professional mold remediation company as soon as possible to minimize restoration complications and costs. These trained specialists will be able to quickly assess the extent of damage, remove standing water, identify strains of mold or mildew present and perform thorough dehumidification of affected spaces to eliminate all residual moisture.