Commercial Systems Prone to Water Damage: SERVPRO of NW Dekalb/Dunwoody/Brookhaven
SERVPRO of NW Dekalb/Dunwoody/Brookhaven is ready for whatever happens! We'll restore your business after any size of property damage.
Commercial properties present unique risks when it comes to water damage in Dekalb County, GA. Unlike residential homes, which are usually one story and have easily accessible crawl spaces and attics, commercial buildings can be many stories high with flat roofs and multiple storefront windows. They also often have expensive specialized equipment that can be very costly to repair or replace if damaged by water. In this blog post, we will discuss the different parts of a commercial building that are at risk for water damage, as well as some tips on how to prevent it.
The first and most obvious risk for water damage in a commercial property is the plumbing system. Because commercial buildings have more bathrooms, kitchens, and other water-using fixtures, they also have larger and more complex plumbing systems. These systems are often located in hard-to-reach places, making them difficult to repair if they spring a leak.
One of the main water damage challenges according to The Hartford Insurance is an improperly maintained sprinkler system. By law, most commercial buildings must have a fire sprinkler system, but many building owners forget to regularly maintain and test these systems. While a well-maintained fire sprinkler system can help prevent extensive fire damage in the event of a fire, improper maintenance or disaster planning can cause extensive water damage that can flood multiple floors.
Another plumbing risk is burst pipes. Commercial buildings, especially high rises tend to run at a higher pressure than residential buildings. Therefore, a burst pipe has the potential to release significantly more water than a home.
One of the ways in which we help commercial property owners prevent catastrophic property damage before it happens is through our app-based Emergency Response Planning program (ERP).
In addition to the plumbing system, there are a number of exterior commercial building components that can experience water damage. One of the most common is the flat roof. Because flat roofs are not sloped like traditional pitched roofs, they tend to pool water instead of shedding it. This can lead to leaks and eventually, if left unaddressed, major water damage.
Some common commercial roofing systems include:
- Built-up Roofing (BUR): Often called tar and gravel roofs, these commercial roofing systems are built with a semi-continuous membrane installed in layers, then covered in aggregate. While they are usually simple to maintain, best practices suggest inspecting the roof for deterioration and possible leak points at least twice yearly.
- Thermoplastic Single-Ply Membrane Roofing (PVC & TPO): These roofs are installed in large rolls that are then welded together at the seams with heat. The material is very durable and oil-resistant. However, the heat-welding methods require skilled installation, which can lead to weak points and leak-prone areas if not performed correctly.
- EPDM Roofing: Some roofers call these "rubber roofs" because the material they are made of, ethylene propylene diene monomer is very rubber-like. This kind of roof is derived from oil and natural gas, and appears dark gray or black. When installed correctly and with the highest thickness available, this type of commercial roof will last a very long time with little to no issues. Unless you experience storm damage in your area, an annual check for leaks around the roof penetrations should suffice.
Commercial window systems are built for durability and use, however, they can often present a unique water damage challenge for commercial facilities. Most aluminum glazing systems aren't intended to be 100% waterproof. Most commercial window systems are meant to limit water penetration during extreme circumstances while also weeping water back out to the exterior.
By directing all moisture to the sill flashing, storefront systems limit water penetration. It's critical that the sill flashing be installed correctly in order to avoid water damage. Making sure that sealant is put on the top of the rear leg before installing the sill is one of the most important aspects of a good installation.
The most essential aspect of maintaining water penetration with a storefront is end dam fastening and sealing. Water will enter the building through the jamb locations if end dams are not properly fastened and sealed. Improperly (or missing) end dams can cause significant water damage to the interior drywall or flooring around commercial storefront windows.
Like anything else in a building, time and the elements can cause wear and tear and failure of these commercial window water control systems.
Commercial Water Damage Inspection Services
So if you notice moisture or water damage around your storefront windows, you should consider calling SERVPRO of NW Dekalb/Dunwoody/Brookhaven to inspect for potential water damage issues. Our technicians are trained to identify, troubleshoot, and restore all types of commercial water issues.
Call today to schedule your commercial service!
Tips to Stay Safe during Fire Damage: SERVPRO of NW Dekalb/Dunwoody/Brookhaven
No matter how serious your property damage may be, SERVPRO of NW Dekalb/Dunwoody/Brookhaven is your local expert for restoring your home or business.
It's that time of year again - fire season in Dekalb County, GA, and surrounding areas. Between February and May, the weather gets hotter and drier, while the risk of house fires rises. A fire may start from a variety of sources, ranging from a faulty wire to an overloaded outlet to a kitchen mishap to a bonfire left unattended. It's critical to know how to react quickly and effectively if your home catches fire.
Here's What You Need To Know If A Fire Starts:
The first line of defense against a house fire is to know how to use the proper fire extinguisher for the situation. This simple procedure can help save lives and hundreds of thousands of dollars in property damage. If the fire spreads uncontrollably, evacuate immediately and stay away, then call 9-1-1. Leave all of your belongings where they are and save yourself and your loved ones.
If your clothing ignites, remember the old adage: Stop, Drop, and Roll.
It's critical to utilize the stairs if you live in a building with elevators in case of a fire. The elevator electrical system may be damaged by a fire, causing the shaft to operate like a chimney and rapidly fill up with deadly fumes.
Doors may be used to your advantage in a fire, potentially saving your life. If the doorknob or handle is hot, don't open it. If you can't exit through the primary route, look for another option. Do not open any doors that are warm to the touch.
Close any doors that might obstruct your exits, lay a wet towel beneath the doors, and call the fire department or 9-1-1 if flames, heat, or fire block your avenues of escape. Tell them exactly where you are so they can find you.
If you're near a window that you can't use as an escape, open it and wave a brightly colored cloth or use your phone flashlight to signal for help.
What To Do After a Fire
After a fire, it is important to contact a professional fire damage restoration company like SERVPRO of NW Dekalb/Dunwoody/Brookhaven. We have the training, experience, and equipment to properly restore your home - "Like it never even happened."
If you try to clean up the fire damage yourself, you could end up making the situation worse both in your home and with your insurance company's process.
Trust the experts, and call today!
6 Simple Maintenance Tips to Prevent Water Damage in Your Home| SERVPRO® of NW Dekalb/Dunwoody/Brookhaven
Our SERVPRO of NW Dekalb/Dunwoody/Brookhaven technicians are ready to assist you at a moment's notice. Call today for immediate assistance!
5 Simple Maintenance Tips to Prevent Water Damage in Your Home| SERVPRO® of NW Dekalb/Dunwoody/Brookhaven
Water damage is both expensive and inconvenient. SERVPRO of NW Dekalb/Dunwoody/Brookhaven, your local water damage expert, has seen this happen too many times. It will help you prevent water damage and lower your home maintenance costs in the long run if you take care of your property. You're undoubtedly feeling concerned if your home floods. However, by following these simple maintenance ideas, you can drastically reduce the risk of damage.
1) To prevent dampness and moisture, replace the old caulk around your windows.
We receive a lot of calls regarding window caulk water damage repair in Brookhaven, GA and the surrounding areas. Caulking your windows not only prevents water leaks but also helps to increase the efficiency of your air conditioner while keeping the outside air out of your house. It's a simple operation that any homeowner can complete. Depending on the type, caulking can last anywhere from five to ten years; nevertheless, you should check your caulking every year and replace it if it begins to fracture or peel off the window.
Exterior door flashings should be inspected to see whether there are any tears or rust that would allow water in. Caulking the doors will also help prevent early door flashing failure.
2) Check your water heater for leaks to avoid it from flooding and causing water damage.
When it comes to our emergency water cleanup services, heater failure is all too prevalent. Regularly maintaining your property may help you avoid a massive water heater flood. Make sure the temperature of the water heater's thermostat is set precisely and functioning properly to prevent pressure from developing, which may result in a leak.
Water heaters frequently develop rust or silt inside, resulting in undesirable tastes and odors in the water. If your water begins to make unusual noises, it's probably time for a checkup or a new water heater.
3) Immediately replace any leaking or damaged water hoses or connections on your plumbing appliances
Be on the lookout for any holes, kinks, fraying, deterioration, or corrosion on your plumbing's hoses and connections. If you detect any damage, have it repaired right away. In order to avoid pricey water damage expenses down the road, most manufacturers and plumbers recommend changing water hoses and connections every three to five years.
(5) Examine the roof and gutters for debris and any signs of moisture damage in the attic.
If the roof on your home does not drain properly, it may deteriorate. Water can seep into your property if this happens.
Look for dampness around vents, valleys, chimneys, pipes, and skylights. Any place on your roof with holes or connections is a potential source of leaks later on. If the flashing deteriorates as a result of weather, rusting, or losing its seal, water may flow into your house.
Check the inside of your attic for dampness or mold development. If you find moist, damaged, or moldy insulation, rotted or discolored boards or ceiling panels, or sheetrock puckering, you may have a leak on your hands.
6) Clean and inspect the HVAC condensation lines for any leaks or obstructions.
If your HVAC condensation lines become clogged, water leaks out and damages your home's surrounding areas. Check your condensation pipes on a monthly basis to ensure they're clear of debris.
Pour one-half cup of plain, white vinegar down the condensate drain once to four times a year to clear out blockages and grime. Bleach should not be used since it might harm your metal drain pan and cause it to degrade. If you detect an accumulation of debris or mold, our SERVPRO experts can assist you with any water damage.
We are Here to Help You with Any Water Repair Needs You May Have
If you have water damage in your house or workplace, call our team at SERVPRO of NW Dekalb/Dunwoody/Brookhaven for immediate assistance.
Our courteous, well-experienced staff are always happy to answer any questions you might have. Save our phone number in case you need help again in the future, or contact us right away for a prompt response from one of our IICRC-trained water restoration specialists.
We are always Here to Help!
Spring Weather Hazards in Georgia | SERVPRO® of NW DeKalb / Dunwoody / Brookhaven
Extreme temperature changes can lead to severe weather. SERVPRO of NW Dekalb/Dunwoody/Brookhaven is a click away if you experience any damage.
The United States is the world's third-largest country in terms of total land area, behind only Russia and Canada (though China is larger if all outlying US territories are excluded).
With so many distinct territories all within one country, seasonal weather is extremely diverse in the USA. As a result, each faces unique weather threats of differing degrees throughout the year.
Let's look at what to expect from some of the key areas in spring, as well as what we need to be aware of here in Georgia, when two warm and cold air masses meet throughout the country.
The Pacific Northwest is prone to significant rainfall during the spring, which can cause floods and water damage to houses. Snowfall will continue at higher elevations, and the melting and runoff from that will bring new concerns of their own.
The longest winter is in the Upper Midwest and Northeast, with temperatures sticking around for the entire season. Extreme cold and the prospect of snowstorms and blizzards may be expected from Maine to South Dakota throughout late spring or early summer, when temperatures start to rise.
On the other side, residents of the southern West Coast should be wary of intense heat waves and safety concerns, as well as possible tsunamis on Hawaii's South Pacific coast as a result of tectonic activity.
From Iowa to Texas, storms, droughts, and possible blazes will be a worry for the heartland. Wildfires can quickly spread when the wind is strong and the weather is dry. In addition, Tornado Alley lies in this region; it has a high rate of tornadoes.
Extreme weather is also a concern in the Southeast, especially in Georgia, where tornadoes and severe thunderstorms can occur in landlocked states, as well as hazardous rip currents on the coast and hurricanes during the spring. Clouds, thunderstorms, and tornadoes are common in Georgia during the spring and summer. Remnants of tropical storms that have been blowing across the sea may also trigger significant floods.
No matter where you live in the United States, weather is always a major concern. Your state might have different weather than your friend's state, but it is always a good idea to be prepared.
Help is only a phone call away if extreme weather causes you to suffer property damage from water, fire, or other agents. For prompt and professional restoration, contact SERVPRO of NW Dekalb/Dunwoody/Brookhaven.
Preparing For Vacation: How To Ensure Safe Water Systems
Turn off the main water supply.
How To Ensure Safe Water Systems When Going On Vacation
Water pipe repair and flooded homes are difficult to deal with at any time of the year, but flooding issues can be exponentially costlier when you are on vacation if the water sits for an extended period of time before you discover it. For peace of mind while you are away, be sure that you take the following precautionary measures to ensure that no preventable water catastrophes happen in your home.
1. Keep Your AC On
This may seem counterintuitive, but keeping your AC on a higher temperature in summertime (or a lower temperature in wintertime) can prevent unnecessary condensation or pipe freezing. If your thermostat is programmable, set it to stay at a manageable temperature while you’re away.
2. Turn Off the Main Water Supply
Turning off the main water supply is perhaps the most important step to ensuring that you won’t have to deal with needless water pipe repair issues upon your return. If you have someone watch your home or your pets while you’re away, you can simply turn off pipe lines that lead to your appliances.
3. Check Your Sump Pump
Make sure your sump pump is in working order by pouring water into it. If it’s working properly, this should trigger the sump pump to turn on. If the pump is not working correctly, you’ll want to see about repairing it before you leave on vacation, to avoid further damages.
4. Change Your Supply Lines
Plastic lines break easily, so be sure to check supply lines and swap out any plastic lines with stainless steel lines. Stainless steel lines are inexpensive, so it’s well worth the small investment.
While you are preparing to leave on vacation, if you find that you already need to repair a broken pipe or locate a water leak, be sure to phone your local residential water damage specialists in Gainsborough, GA, to fix the problem. By settling all your water pipe repair concerns ahead of time, you can enjoy a relaxing, stress-free vacation.
4 Fire Safety Tips for Pet Owners
Pet safety is important, remember to include your furry friend in your fire escape plan.
How To Keep Your Pet Safe During a Fire
When you have pets, they become part of the family. Because they are so important to you, their safety is a top priority. Here are some tips for keeping your furry companions safe in case of a fire emergency in your Doraville, GA home.
1. Have an Escape Plan
While it is something that you hope you won’t need, it is important that you have an escape plan in case of a fire. You should include all family members in this plan so that everyone knows how to leave the home safely. Be sure to practice removing the animals from your home as well. Including pet preparation in your plan can help things go more smoothly during an emergency.
2. Know Your Pet’s Favorite Spot
A fire can be scary not only for you but for your pet as well. If your pet becomes alarmed or afraid, it may seek out a place where it feels comfortable. If this place is small and out of the way, it can make it difficult to locate your pet during a fire emergency. If you notice that your pet tends to spend a lot of time in a certain area, making a note of it can help you find your pet more quickly during a crisis.
3. Keep Your Pets Secure
Pet safety is important once you’ve removed them from the house as well. If you have a leash or a pet carrier, keep it in a convenient and easily-accessible location so that you can grab it quickly while leaving the house. If your pet is panicking, it may decide to run once outside and you may not be able to locate it after the situation has settled.
4. Keep Important Documents in a Fireproof Box
While this might not be an immediate concern during an emergency, it is a good idea to keep ownership papers and records in a fireproof box so that they can be easily recovered during fire remediation.
Including your pets in your fire emergency preparations can ensure that everyone makes it out of your home safely.
Winter Storm Damage: Preparation, Mitigation and Renovation
Adding extra insulation to attics, crawl spaces and basements is likely the best.
Winter Storm Tips
When business owners hear the phrase storm damage, they likely think of hurricanes, tornadoes or other warm climate weather, but the winter months can be just as devastating. The frigid temperatures and ice and snow storms can lead to all types of property damage, but the costliest problem is likely a burst pipe. For that reason, it is key to prepare your building and exposed pipes for the coming winter.
A frozen pipe is building pressure from the inside that may eventually force a break in the seal or explode out through cracking and breaking the line. To prevent a line break, you need to keep areas where exposed pipes are located warm. This means adding extra insulation to attics, crawl spaces and basements is likely best.
Another excellent way to protect exposed pipes from becoming a burst pipe is to add insulation or other heating elements directly to the pipe. You can purchase pipe sleeves or even UL-listed heat tape and install it over the pipe to help prevent freezing.
A more expensive approach is to relocate exposed and exterior pipes to a warmer and interior location. You will likely have to hire a professional as this job may require special permits and a level of expertise beyond your skillset.
While preparation and mitigation are effective solutions, you should find and resolve current plumbing issues before they become a problem. Established leaks only make exposed pipes more vulnerable. Consistent leaking can weaken the pipe and its seal while making the pipe more prone to freezing. Check your property for standing water as one common sign of leaking, and call a disaster remediation specialist in the North Atlanta,GA, area to help you resolve the issue.
A burst pipe can be detrimental for a business, possibly causing temporary shutdown for cleanup and restoration work. To prevent freezing during a winter storm, follow the above tips, and rest assured that your business is protected through the long winter months.
Don’t Ignore a Toilet Overflow
In overflowing toilet in a Brookhaven, GA home.
Steps To Handle an Overflowing Toilet
Sewer damage in your home is just repulsive to think about, but it is best to think about it before it happens so you are prepared to clean it up the right way. Here are some things you should know so you can handle an overflowing toilet in your home in Brookhaven, GA.
Not Your Average Flood
When you have sewer damage overflow, it’s not your average flood water. This means extra precaution is needed in the cleanup of a flooded toilet:
• Skin should be protected from exposure by wearing gloves and boots.
• Cleanup will require the use of antimicrobials and disinfectants.
• Some materials may not be cleanable and need to be replaced.
When it comes to clean up, you need to keep safety in mind because this is a black water flood.
Proper cleanup must also consider the prevention of mold growth. A toilet overflow always comes at a bad time, and you may be tempted to go on to work with a plan to deal with the damage later. Delays in cleanup could cause problematic secondary damage, like mold growth. In just 48 hours, mold can start to grow. That may sound like enough time to go to work and come back, but then your materials would be so saturated with black water that it may take much longer to remove and dry everything. Once mold colonies start forming, it’s really hard to get them under control.
Who should you call for help? Don’t look for a sewage company to help because you need a full disaster mitigation specialist that can handle all aspects of cleanup and restoration. You want someone that is knowledgeable about black water cleanup including proper safety practices and prevention of secondary damage.
When you have a toilet overflow in your home, you want to prepare yourself for the additional complications associated with that type of problem. Professional sewage cleanup and water mitigation will ensure your home is restored to the condition it was in before the sewer damage.
3 Things To Know About Using a Fire Extinguisher
A fire contained in a trashcan could be extinguished quickly by an employee.
Three Things to Keep in Mind When Using a Fire Extinguisher
No matter the size, fires are dangerous. Employees need to evacuate a building if a fire is out of control. However, if a fire at your building in Dekalb, GA, is small and contained to one area, it is possible to eliminate the flames on your own using a fire extinguisher.
1. Know Your Equipment Before Disaster Strikes
While the steps required to use an extinguisher aren't exceptionally complicated under normal circumstances, things can change when a fire starts. The best way to prevent damage as a result of a small fire is to be acquainted with the extinguisher before you ever need to use it. This means yearly training on how to operate it. The more familiar an employee is with this device, the easier it will be to use when the time comes.
2. Assess the Fire Before You Act
A commercial building fire can cause fear and panic, but it's important to remain calm. The first thing to do during a fire is to activate the fire alarm. If a fire is large or out of control, employees should follow the building's evacuation plan and leave intervention to the fire department. If the fire is small, however, it might be possible to use a fire extinguisher to eliminate it. For example, it's possible that a kitchen fire on a stove or a fire contained in a trashcan could be extinguished quickly by an employee.
3. Use the Extinguisher Correctly
When using an extinguisher, here are a few things to keep in mind — although you should always read and follow your specific device's instructions.
- Pull the pin on the extinguisher; this will break the tamper seal.
- Always aim low and point the nozzle at the base of the fire.
- Squeeze the handle to release the firefighting agent.
- Step from side to side while using the extinguisher. Continue this motion until the fire is extinguished.
Repeat the last three steps with the fire extinguisher until the flames are out. If there is any doubt that you have not successfully snuffed the fire, evacuate immediately. Leave the firefighting to the professionals and the fire damage assessment to restoration experts.
How To Prevent a Mold Problem After a Flood
Flooding can cause many issues in your home.
How to Avoid a Mold Problem Following a Flood
Flooding can cause many issues in your home. It can damage the structure of your walls, ceilings and floors. It can ruin personal items and spoil any food or toiletries it touches. If left untreated, it can also lead to mold growth. There are several things you can do to ensure that your home in Chamblee, GA, doesn't develop a mold problem in addition to water damage after a flood.
Have the Experts on Speed Dial
Your first instinct may be to call your insurance agent, but your next call should be to water mitigation experts. These professionals offer several valuable services when your home has been flooded:
- Assess extent of damage
- Create a remediation plan and timeline
- Provide an estimate of the cost of repairs
- Confirm level of damage for insurance purposes
Mold growth can occur within 24 hours of the appearance of excess moisture, particularly if it is coupled with contamination, as floodwater tends to be. Calling the experts the moment you know you need them is your strongest defense against a fungal invasion.
Get Rid of the Water
Floodwater creates a breeding ground for mold on any surface it touches. If you don't want to add mold removal to the list of expenses you incur from the flooding incident, you must remove its cause. A sump pump is useful for extracting the excess water and letting the surfaces start to dry.
Control the Humidity
Humid air can be just as inviting to mold spores as standing water. If you can safely use a dehumidifier, it can help lower the moisture in the air to discourage fungus growth. If it is not safe to plug in a machine, however, you can still increase the air flow to help dry out your home with fans and, if the air outside is not humid, open windows.
Preventing mold growth can be a challenging task, but it is possible if you act quickly. By calling in experts and reducing the moisture in your home and in the air, you can decrease your chances of secondary damage.