A Few Facts About Floodwater
Flooded home after storm in Layton, UT.
Storm season in Layton, UT, can wreak havoc on your home. One of the most common problems that occurs is water damage from floodwater. Homeowners often are tempted to clean up this type of mess themselves, but that is a mistake. Contact with the water should be avoided. To protect yourself and your family, there are some things you need to know about floodwater.
Water from a storm is considered black water, or Category 3 water, which is highly contaminated. Removing it and repairing its damage requires professional help from water remediation specialists. Storm water can pick up contaminants from multiple sources:
- Backed up sewer system
- Agricultural or industrial runoff
- Toxic waste site overflow
- Oil or gasoline from driveways or streets
You never know where the water flooding your home has been. It's better to be on the safe side and avoid contact with it.
One of the first things that remediation experts are going to do when they come to your home is to determine the extent of the water damage. To do this, they discern the level of the Category 3 water. At Level 1, the water comes from an interior source. The amount of water is miniscule and hasn't soaked into anything yet. The damage caused at this level is relatively easy to fix. At Level 2, the water also comes from an interior overflow, but it affects a much larger area and may show signs of seeping into floors or walls. During a flood, however, the water comes from an outside source and causes quite a bit of damage. These factors make it Level 3 water. Not only must the water be removed, the area must also be disinfected before contractors can begin to make repairs.
Category 3 water damage necessitates drying, cleaning and repairing. If your home has been flooded by storm overflow, it is important to have the problem assessed and remedied by certified experts.
The Cost Difference Between Mitigation and Restoration During a Flood
Flood damage can be devastating in Bountiful, UT.
Floods continue to be the most prevalent and expensive natural disaster in America. While preventative measures provide quicker and less expensive alternatives to the cost of hiring a flood cleanup company, many property owners do not mitigate against flood damage. This results in high costs and a lengthy restoration process.
One of the best preventative recommendations for flood damage is flood insurance, which property owners may purchase through the National Flood Insurance Program, managed by the Federal Insurance and Mitigation Administration (FIMA), for an average of $700 per year.
Some other preventative methods include the following:
• Sealing basement walls with compounds that are waterproof
• Installing reflux valves to prevent drains from backing up
• Moving heat and electrical sources to higher levels
• Backing up data to the cloud
• Making a flood plan, including work-from-home opportunities
Once in place, these measures offer protection, year after year. Even better, property owners can usually have the cost partially or fully covered by FIMA.
In contrast, property owners who did not take preventative measures must hire a flood cleanup company out of pocket. Every day the business is closed is a day of income lost, while the company may have salaried staff to pay.
Drying out the business may take the restoration company a few days, and this can only begin after the flood waters recede. Restoration to pre-flood conditions may only require an additional few days, but in worst case scenarios, it may take a business a while to completely rebuild. Not surprisingly, FEMA estimates that 40 percent of small businesses, many of which do not invest in preventative measures, fail to recover from natural disasters.
When it comes to flood damage, prevention is always better than a cure. Sure, a reputable flood cleanup company may restore your place of business in a matter of days, but investing in proactive measures is the best approach to natural disasters in Bountiful, Utah.
Understanding Secondary Damage
Pipe damage can be a leading cause of water damage and mold growth if not treated correctly.
When you have a flood in your commercial building in Bountiful, Utah, it's hard to know what the extent of the damage will be until you get a remediation team in there for an inspection. This crew can help you do the following:
• Assess the damage.
• Create a repair plan.
• Initiate cleanup.
As the professionals are assessing your damage, you may hear them talk about primary and secondary damage. Here's what you need to know about damage that's caused indirectly by the waters.
Damage caused indirectly by the water
What It Doesn't Include
This secondary form of destruction can include a wide range of damage, but it doesn't include everything done to your building. The primary damage is anything done when the pipe burst or the roof leaked. For example, black mold growth wasn't caused directly by the flooding, but damaged walls and ceilings may have been.
How It's Formed
Because this type of damage only includes the harm done after the flooding has ceased, how is the damage done? Often slow reaction time, improper cleanup and hidden problems cause what the professionals consider to be nonprimary damage. For example, black mold growth does not happen the instant a flood starts. Instead, it takes 24 to 48 hours to begin. High humidity may also be a secondary type of damage because it takes place when the water is allowed to sit for too long or is not completely removed from the building.
What It Does Include
Because it's caused by slow reactions, this damage can include mold growth, unsalvageable furnishings, water contamination and the spread of the flood. If a pipe bursts on the second floor, the water may start to travel to lower levels if it is not caught soon enough. The path of the water may be considered secondary or primary damage depending on what caused the travel.
Mold growth, including black mold, is often considered a type of secondary damage. However, your commercial space could by affected by other types of secondary destruction if you don't properly address water issues right away.
How To Inspect for a Shower Leak
Shower leaks can be a leading cause to water damage.
When buying or renting a home in Bountiful, Utah, don’t forget to inspect for a bathtub leak. Spending the time to do a thorough check of the home for water damage can save you thousands of dollars in repairs. From tiled showers to enclosed shower bathtub units, many of the ways to check for leaks are similar. Here are four simple steps home inspectors take to look for bathtub and shower leaks.
4 Steps to look for bathtub and shower leaks
1. Check surrounding areas for water damage. Stained baseboards or ceilings, rusted tacks holding down carpet or loose bathroom floor tiles are all indicators of a shower pan leak. Another quick trick is to push a finger into the baseboards or surrounding grout to feel for any give. Ideally, they should be hard, nonporous surfaces and provide no movement.
2. Examine crawl spaces beneath bathrooms. If your house has a crawl space or basement, be sure to look for black wood dripping with water, as that is a sure sign of a bathtub leak.
3. Let your suspicious nature run free. An old pan, a fresh coat of paint, or an unused shower could all be signs of a leak that may not have been properly sealed. Note the age of the home and consult with the owner to find out the last time the shower pan was replaced.
4. Inspect a tiled shower stall. A loose threshold into the shower can be a sign of a shower pan leak. Vertical or horizontal cracks in the tiled wall or tile separating from the wall can lead to leaks due to water spraying from the showerhead directly into the cracks.
Water damage in your home can be frustrating and costly. Your local water damage repair and restoration specialist can help you get your home back to normal. Discovering a bathtub leak early can save you time, money, and hassle.
Why Does Mold Always Come Back?
Mold growing where water was present in a Woods Cross,UT ceiling.
As a business owner, you understand the importance of keeping your facilities free from mold. After all, mold can ruin inventory, equipment and furnishings. If you have battled mold in your Woods Cross, UT, warehouse, you may have noticed that it always seems to return. To keep mold growth in check, you must understand why it comes back.
Water Gets Everywhere
If your warehouse has a roof leak, you have probably realized that water can infiltrate even hidden parts of your facility. In fact, you may find wet spots far from the leak source. While any leak can cause water damage, it may also allow mold to grow. As such, you must inspect all parts of your warehouse for leaks. Specifically, be certain to check the following for signs of damage:
- Roofing systems
Humidity Allows Mold To Spread
If mold returns to the same area after you repair leaks, high humidity may be the culprit. As you probably know, mold needs humidity to thrive. Therefore, you may want to consider investing in a hygrometer. These devices measure relative humidity. If you have too much inside your warehouse, a dehumidifier may limit mold growth. Moreover, rethinking your warehouse’s ventilation system may help to keep the space dry.
Mold Has Serious Staying Power
When you are fighting mold, you have to worry about what you cannot see. Simply removing the visible signs of mold probably won’t take care of the problem. Because mold spreads through microscopic spores, you may want to think about contracting with a mold remediation service. Restoration technicians have the equipment and expertise to locate and remove mold spores.
To make money in business, you must meet customer demands. Of course, if you have a mold problem in your warehouse, you may have trouble moving inventory. While identifying the source of water damage is essential, you also must understand mold growth.
This Is a Drill: How To Teach Your Escape Plan to Your Employees
Emergency kit for your commercial building in Bountiful, UT.
An unexpected disaster can cause fear and panic in your employees. A solid emergency plan for escaping that disaster, however, can increase their confidence and thus the likelihood that they will conduct themselves calmly and rationally when a problem arises. If a situation that requires evacuation comes up during the workday, you will be glad you made a plan and trained employees to carry it out through the use of practice sessions such as a fire drill.
Making the Plan
As the business owner, you are the best equipped to devise the escape plan for your business in Bountiful, Utah, that will work the best for your employees. Each plan should contain the following elements:
• Alarm procedures
• Evacuation routes and meeting areas
• Chain of command and division of responsibilities
• Emergency kit containing water, flashlights and first aid items
• Contact list of employees for confirming their safety
• Clear reporting structure
• Contact information for insurance company and restoration specialists
The time to plan for a natural disaster or fire is before it happens. After you have the plan, it's time to train your employees.
Training the Staff
Whether you are staging a fire drill or testing storm procedures, the information should always proceed the practice. Include evacuation plans in your yearly training. Impress upon your employees the importance of understanding the plan and encourage questions and concerns during the discussion. At some point, you can test the plan with a drill. Only a handful of personnel who will be assisting with key elements of the procedures need to know when the drill is planned. That way, employees can actually experience the surprise they may feel if the real situation should ever arise. During the drill, take note of what goes right and what needs improvement so that you can tweak the plan or training as needed.
Planning how you want your employees to respond in a disastrous situation and training them to implement the plan can keep them safe. Each fire drill brings you closer to a calm, smooth resolution.
Estimating Damage After a Commercial Fire
Fire damage cleanup in Bountiful, UT.
After a fire at your Bountiful, Utah, business, the cost of cleanup and repair can run anywhere from several hundred to several thousand dollars, depending on the severity. The particulars of your insurance policy will also determine the price, depending on your deductible and what out-of-pocket costs you may incur. By working with the insurance adjuster and a professional fire restoration company, you should be able to get a good idea of the cost involved.
Below are the main things to consider when creating an estimate.
1. Emergency Cleanup
The emergency cleanup makes sure no further damage is caused to the property through exposure to the elements or vandalism. Any holes in the walls or roof will be boarded up or covered with tarps, and any standing water will be removed from the building. There may be further cost if security fencing is installed.
2. Water Damage
Depending on the severity of the fire, and whether or not sprinklers were installed, the fire company may have used a great deal of water to subdue the blaze. Carpets and upholstery may be soaked, the structure itself may be waterlogged, and there may be mold and bacteria that need to be mitigated. Also, firefighters may have used chemical extinguishers that leave residues and contaminate the air. Special equipment must be employed to dry, dehumidify, clean and sterilize.
3. Smoke Removal
The cost of cleaning up damage and odor from smoke and soot must be figured in to the estimate as well. The methods and equipment used will depend upon the type of combustible substances. Smoke and soot from wood, protein or synthetic material will each create a different kind of cleanup problem.
4. Restoration Costs
After the cleaning and disinfecting are completed, the actual replacements and repairs can take place. Depending on how bad the actual fire damage was, repairs may involve only replacing carpeting and repainting, or it may entail rebuilding entire rooms.
While the cost of repairing damage from a commercial fire can vary greatly. However, it should not be difficult to estimate once all of the factors are taken into consideration, and the damage has been assessed by a qualified professional.
What Color Is Your Water? 3 Types That Can Affect Your Health
SERVPRO performed flood cuts to this Bountiful, UT home to remove all water damaged materials.
You know you’ve got a leak, but do you know what type of water you are dealing with? If your Bountiful, Utah, home needs wastewater cleanup, it is important to determine the category type so you can minimize exposure to contaminated water. There are three water types: category one (clean water), category two (gray water) and category three (black water).
All three can affect your health differently.
1. Clean Water
Category one is considered clean water because it is free of contaminants. White water poses no health risk because it has not come into contact with potentially harmful substances. Rainwater and water from a faucet, broken pipe, supply line or a refrigerator are all common examples. While category one may sound innocuous, it is important to know that in a short 48 hours, water can turn from white to gray.
2. Gray Water
Category two is called gray water, and it is considered contaminated water. It is harmful for humans to ingest because chemicals, soaps or similar contaminants are present. Examples are water from a dishwasher, washing machine, shower/sink drain or fish tank. If gray water is left stagnant, then it can transition to category three within two days or less.
3. Black Water
Category three is the most dangerous water. It contains bacteria and pathogens that are extremely harmful to humans. Black water can come from sewage lines, RV holding tanks or toilets. Effectively managing category three water requires professional restoration services. All affected surfaces must be cleaned, sanitized and dried completely before humans can come in contact with those areas.
Understanding the difference between black, gray and white water will help keep your Bountiful, Utah, home free from unsafe contaminants. If you aren’t certain what type of water you have, it is wise to consider it category three until a professional can confirm that you don’t have contaminated water. Be smart! Keep yourself healthy by treating the three water types accordingly.
Follow These Mold Safety Tips If You Suspect Mold
Severe mold damage in Bountiful, UT home.
If you see visible mold, do not disturb it. You can inadvertently spread the mold infestation throughout your home. When mold is disturbed, the mold can release microscopic mold spores which become airborne and can circulate inside your home.
What to Do:
- Stay out of affected areas.
- Turn off the HVAC system and fans.
- Contact SERVPRO of Bountiful for mold remediation services.
What Not to Do:
- Don’t touch or disturb the mold.
- Don’t blow air across any surfaces with visible or suspected mold growth.
- Don’t attempt to dry the area yourself.
- Don’t spray bleach or other disinfectants on the mold.
About Our Mold Remediation Services
SERVPRO of Bountiful specializes in mold cleanup and restoration, in fact, it’s a cornerstone of our business. Our crews are highly trained restoration professionals that use specialized equipment and techniques to properly remediate your mold problem quickly and safely.
Follow These 4 Steps To Use Your Fire Extinguisher the Right Way
Fire in your kitchen? Use a fire extinguisher to limit the damage.
Few things can ruin a cozy evening at home faster than a kitchen fire. Whether you are preparing a meal for your family or cooking for friends, you must know how to effectively deal with flames in your kitchen. If you want to minimize fire damage in your Bountiful, UT, home, follow these four simple steps to use your fire extinguisher the right way.
4 Steps To Use Your Fire Extinguisher Correctly
1. Remove the Pin
Your emergency extinguisher probably has a pin to prevent accidental sprays. This piece of plastic or metal sits inside the trigger. It also likely has a ring that makes removal simple and intuitive. Before you begin to extinguish a fire, you must remove the safety pin.
2. Aim the Nozzle
Often, unaware homeowners point the nozzle of the extinguisher at the top of the flames. This is a mistake, as fires receive fuel from their foundations. Therefore, you must focus your spray on the base of the fire in your kitchen.
3. Apply Controlled Pressure
Your fire extinguisher may dispense more suppression agent than you anticipate. As such, it is important not to panic. Instead, apply controlled pressure to the extinguisher’s nozzle. Begin slowly before gradually increasing pressure to successfully extinguish the blaze.
4. Use a Sweeping Motion
To put out a fire of any size, you must concentrate on the base. As you probably know, fires tend to move around. By using a sweeping motion, you target all parts of the fire. Continue moving the extinguisher from side to side until the fire is gone.
Using a fire extinguisher to stop a fire in the kitchen is usually your best bet to limit damage. Still, extinguishers can be messy. If you have sustained damage or simply need a post-fire cleanup, working with a reputable restoration service in Bountiful, UT, is a good idea. Before you get to that point, however, you must be sure both you and your extinguisher are ready for action.