Commercial vs. Residential Water Damages in Fort Worth, Texas
Standing water in commercial office space
As we move into the colder, wetter months, we all have to consider the possible damages that our structures can sustain during this time of year. Summer’s storms are past, and now from leaky roofs and moldy siding to deep ruts in the driveway or potholes in the parking lot, the fall and winter months will bring their own set of concerns to both home and business owners. Weather won’t be as violent, but rains can last a lot longer, and then will come sleet, ice, and snow.
For the homeowner, some of the exterior concerns due to weather will be:
- Eroded landscaping
- Rutted driveways, especially those that are graded either up or downhill
- Moldy siding, window sills, door-jambs, window panes, and roofing
- Rotting wooden fencing and decking
- Leaking roof
- Puddles and pooling
For the business owner, some of the exterior trouble spots can be:
- Potholes and eroded surfaces in public parking areas
- Eroded walkways or damaged, buckling sidewalks and public walkways
- Leaking roofs
- Damaged materials and machinery that have not been stored properly
When it comes to the interior spaces, businesses have to keep an eye on employee bathrooms and kitchen/break areas to make sure that leaks are handled immediately and that spills are cleaned up right away. During bad weather, customers and vendors will track water and debris into your building, and both for safety and aesthetics, it will be a good idea to keep up with this type of accumulation to prevent water damage. Have an umbrella stand ready for everyone who comes through the door!
Homeowners also need to keep up with spills, leaks, and traffic, but it will obviously not be such a large job. In a home, water damage is more likely to come from a water heater or dishwasher that is malfunctioning, or a washer that has developed an issue.
One thing both types of structures have to be concerned about is mold, however - it is never a good thing to realize that a colony has taken hold in either your home or your business.
The team at SERVPRO of West Fort Worth is experienced in all types of clean up after water damage to both homes and businesses, and mold remediation is one of our specialties. Call us today at (817) 560-3086!
How Often Should You Be Replacing Your Roof?
When it comes to knowing how often you should replace your roof, there really isn’t any hard and fast rule. You have to keep an eye on its condition to be able to tell if you need to start thinking about it. If your roof is showing signs of damage, that could lead to major water or storm damage to the rest of your home. Our team wanted to share a few potential issues your roof may develop; any one of these may mean it’s time to replace your roof.
An asphalt shingle roof should last between 20 and 30 years, so if you have a 40-year-old roof, just keep in mind that you will probably need to replace it entirely in the next 1-5 years.
Shingles can curl in two ways: by “cupping,” which happens when the edges of the shingles turn upward; and “clawing,” which is when the edges stay flat and the middle starts to come up. Both are signs of weathering and indicate that potential leaks may possibly be developing, depending on the extent. Every homeowner finds themselves replacing a missing shingle, but it can be just about impossible to get a new shingle to match the color of an old one. Granule colors have changed pretty significantly over the years, and shingle colors often change with years of weathering. If your roof is starting to look like a patchwork quilt, you may want to consider replacing it soon.
Cracked shingles are typically caused by wind damage, and if the damage is extensive and not isolated to just one area, you should start thinking about replacing your roof within the next few years.
Algae Or Moss
This is not a big deal when it shows up on your roof, but it doesn’t give your home or business a great look. You don’t want to take matters into your own hands by power washing or scraping it away since that will often chip off all the protective granules and essentially render your shingles useless. You can use a wash that's one part bleach and one part water to remove algae or moss, and if you do decide to replace your roof, consider tiles that are algae-resistant.
This issue is pretty obvious: if light can get in through your roof, so can rain. If you see any water stains during the next rainfalls, and if they spread or expand, you have an active leak, and it is time to contact SERVPRO of West Fort Worth immediately to help remediate the water damage and potential mold growth.
A sagging roof is typically an indication of a structural issue and demands immediate attention. There could be a problem with the decking in the attic or with the supports in the foundation, which is even worse. You're not necessarily in imminent danger, but this is the kind of thing that's a lot easier to take care of when it's small and localized, so call your roofing professionals right away for this roofing issue.
When it comes to replacing your roof, there is no hard and fast rule. If you are experiencing water damage, it is probably time. Remember that SERVPRO of Hurst-Euless-Bedford is here to help if you are dealing with water damage, fire damage, or a mold infestation. We are committed to getting your business Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned!
Office Fire Safety Precautions to Observe
In the event that a fire ever occurs in your office, it’s important to have a few fire safety precautions in place to keep your employees and commercial building prepared for dealing with one. While having a fire extinguisher and smoke detectors goes without saying, do your employees know what to do if the alarm sounds or they have to use the extinguisher?
Here are a few fire safety precautions that you should ensure are in place:
- Make sure your employees know how to use a fire extinguisher. Every 6 months or so, hold a training session where your employees learn how to use a fire extinguisher if they don’t already know how to use one. Something as simple as this could be the difference between an accidental office fire from a microwave or a lighter being extinguished or burning up everything in sight. Here’s a great article on how to use a fire extinguisher.
- Regularly change your smoke detectors’ batteries and ensure one is installed in every room. As a general rule of thumb, test your smoke detectors once a month and replace their batteries twice a year. By ensuring that your smoke detectors do their job and have the battery juice to sound, you can prevent office fires whenever smoke occurs first.
- Share your office’s evacuation plan. Depending on the size of your office, you need to have one or multiple evacuation plans to adhere to the building’s fire code. Make sure to take into account any legal requirements for fire evacuation plans before you post them around the building and share them.
- Do a few fire drills. Sharing your office’s evacuation plan isn’t enough. Hold a couple fire drills and run your employees through the proper evacuation routes so they know where to go if the building catches on fire. Rehearsing an evacuation plan makes it that much easier to take action in the event that a fire actually occurs.
With all of these fire safety precautions in place, we hope that you’ll never have to manage the aftermath of an office fire. However, If you ever end up dealing with fire damage, water damage, mold, or other natural disaster damage, give SERVPRO of West Fort Worth a call at (817) 560-3086. Our team of professionals are trained and equipped to help you manage restoration and cleaning.
What To Expect From A Commercial Restoration Project
As a business owner, you already have a lot on your plate on any given day. You need to know who to call when something goes wrong or your business is damaged. Whether the damage your business is experiencing is from water, fire, or other weather-related issues, you need a company with the expertise and availability to assist you quickly after a disaster.
Here are some things to look for when seeking a Commercial Restoration Company.
Lost time is lost money. When looking for a company to help you restore your business, you need a team that understands how important and necessary it is to get your business back up and running as quickly as possible.
When in the midst of a disaster, you need to be able to pick up the phone and have immediate assistance from a team of highly trained professionals. It is important to pick a company that is available 24/7 for emergencies and near your business.
In times of stress, you need people who can talk you through it and communicate a plan, not add to it. When seeking Commercial Restoration, make sure you find someone that is ready to communicate a plan, a time frame, and peace of mind.
SERVPRO of West Fort Worth is ready to be that company for you. We have experience in damage restoration and have covered commercial loss for many clients. Here are examples of restoration projects we’ve handled:
- Flood Damage
- Fire Damage
- Inclement Weather Damage
- Damage from Equipment Failure
- Damage from Vandalism
- Damage from Accidents
- Damage due to Aging of Property
We are available 24/7 and are experts in restoration projects in restoring businesses to their proper condition. If you would like to receive assistance from our team of highly trained professionals here at SERVPRO of West Fort Worth, call us at (817) 560-3086 or seek assistance online!
Dealing With Water Damage in your Attic
Considering the attic isn’t an area that is used often by homeowners, it’s easy to forget about it. This is the main reason water damage in the attic often goes unnoticed. If water damage isn’t addressed, it can cause more damage to the areas below the attic and potentially cause mold. The signs of water damage usually include water stains, mold, or musty odors in your home. It is important to make sure you take the proper steps to assess the damage as soon as you notice in order to assure your safety and health, and avoid expensive repairs.
In order to address the damage, you must first find the source of the problem. Begin by evaluating the damage. Where is the water coming from? Could it be a burst pipe or a hole in your roof? Make sure to check the roof for leaks on a regular basis. The water damage in your attic can also be caused by a lack of ventilation. Humidity can get trapped in the attic and cause a buildup of condensation, which causes water damage. Be sure to remain safe throughout this process and turn off all electrical items before touching anything.
The next step is to inspect for mold and fix any leaks. As previously mentioned, water damage can lead to a more serious issue, mold, and mildew. Mold can grow in as little as 24 hours, and it’s easy for it to go unnoticed. When inspecting for mold, it is important to take the proper precautions and be careful. Some mold is toxic to humans and if the mold is a serious issue rather than a small one, it’s best to contact a professional. It is also advised to contact a professional before attempting to fix any leaks unless you have to tools and skills to do so with ease.
SERVPRO of West Fort Worth is always ready to help and assist you with any water damage or mold you may have! If you’re in over your head with water damage, give us a call at (817) 560-3086.
Why an ERP is Absolutely Necessary for Your Business
An ERP, or Emergency Ready Plan, is a method of planning for emergencies before they even occur. Why should your business have an ERP? Your emergency strategy will be carefully devised to guide you and your employees when taking the decisive action necessary during a disaster of any size. The SERVPRO Ready Plan information will give you the security of emergency preparedness, and your plan information can be downloaded into our Ready Plan app to instantly share with SERVPRO so that the damage can be intercepted right away.
Here are some things to consider while putting your ERP into place:
- Talk with your employees to formulate as many disaster scenarios as they can come up with. The most recent hurricanes that have hit Texas have created numerous learning opportunities for preparedness. Studying such tragedies can help you more effectively project other possible disasters to better plan for them.
- It is necessary to create an ERP that protects anyone in the building. The Department of Homeland Security refers to this as “Protective Actions for Life Safety,” and includes:
- Fire Drills. Rehearsals for action during a fire.
- Sheltering. Sheltering staff during a natural disaster.
- Sheltering in Place. Sheltering staff during a man-made emergency.
- Lockdown. Eluding an active shooter.
- Stabilizing an incident means preventing further damage on the scene. This can be accomplished by training your employees in various rescue procedures including:
- First Aid and CPR
- Proper Use of Fire Extinguishers
- Without guidance during an evacuation, people will often panic. Consider adding an evacuation team to your ERP:
- Assign point persons to guide evacuees out of the building.
- Appoint helpers to assist persons with disabilities.
- If an exit is blocked by a hazard such as a collapsed ceiling, make sure the evacuation team is trained to redirect employees to an alternate exit.
SERVPRO of West Fort Worth is a reliable, professional provider of emergency cleaning and restoration services when you experience fire and water damage. SERVPRO can expertly help you devise an effective Emergency Readiness Plan for your business here in the Benbrook/Lake Worth area.
Getting Your North Texas Home Ready for Fall Season Storms
Getting your home ready for the colder temperatures and stormy weather conditions of fall is smart, whether you are a homeowner, a business owner, or both. Weather may be unpredictable during the fall here in North Texas, but you won’t have to worry about it if you prepare now. Here at SERVPRO of West Fort Worth, we have some preparation projects for you to consider:
- Remove dead leaves and debris from your gutters and drainpipes. This will prevent clogging during wetter weather. Drain all outdoor faucets ahead of freezing weather now, as well.
- While late summer is not the time to heavily prune trees and bushes, it is a good time to remove any branches that are dead or look like they could prove dangerous during a fall storm. If you have a tree that you think may be dead or dying, contact an arborist to come and take a look at it. If it is actually dead and near your house, you will want to have it removed before anything happens during a fall storm.
- Examine all your windows and doors for cracks. If you find any, have them sealed now so that you can stay warm and save energy this fall and winter. You’ll be saving both time and money here!
- A roof inspection ahead of colder weather will tell you if your roofing needs any attention before fall storms. Loose shingles can be replaced more easily when it’s warm and dry outside. If you have siding on your home, look it over well for any loose sections; fall storms bring wind that can create problems here.
- Make sure your entrance walkways are in good shape with no buckling or crumbling. When the surrounding ground is wet it can compromise cement, causing it to crack and split, and that’s an accident just waiting to happen.
If you need help with the job of preparing your home for the upcoming stormy season, just call the professional team here at SERVPRO of West Fort Worth. We have the experience and skills needed to take care of your property and belongings to keep them safe. We can get your home or business Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned, too!
Top Three Spots to Check for Water Damage in your North Texas Home
Catching water damage before it becomes evident can save you time and money, so knowing the top spots in your home to regularly monitor for damage is crucial for any homeowner. Instead of waiting until a water stain appears on your ceiling or water pools on the floor under your sink, make it a priority to inspect these three spots for water damage on a monthly basis.
- Check under the sink.
Sinks are regularly located in your kitchen, your bathrooms, and maybe even in other rooms in your house. Since water flows from the faucets and comes up through pipes underneath the sink, it’s not uncommon for leaky sinks to occur. Always inspect the cabinetry and piping underneath your sink for any leaks or moisture.
- Don’t forget to look behind the toilet.
Your toilet is another frequently-used appliance in your home that uses a lot of water with every flush. Monitoring the space behind and around your toilet for any water damage is always a good practice.
- Take a look at your roof.
It’s easy to forget to look at your roof for water damage, but if your gutters aren’t working properly or your roof isn’t in good shape, there’s a fair chance that water may be seeping through your roof into your attic, your garage, and your ceilings. It can be hard to know what to look for, but any obvious water stains are a bad sign. Be sure to check out the roof from the exterior and the interior sides (your ceilings).
Water damage can be costly and affect the structural integrity of your home, and so it’s important to keep an eye out for water damage before it wreaks havoc. If you’re looking to buy a new home, here are a few things to look for to ensure that you don’t prematurely buy a home that’s susceptible to water damage.
If you recognize the signs of water damage on one of your regular rounds inspecting the vulnerable areas of your home, contact SERVPRO of West Fort Worth at 817-560-3086. With state-of-the-art technology and training, our disaster restoration professionals are equipped for handling the job.
HVAC Maintenance For Your North Texas Apartment Complex
Engaging a professional HVAC company to do maintenance on your apartment complex HVAC systems at regular intervals throughout the year will ensure that all the heating and cooling units on your property are running as efficiently as possible. Inspection and cleaning of the wiring and mechanisms of all your HVAC units will be completed during a professional service call, and a professional will have the specialized training and experience necessary to do this type of job correctly. The comfort of all interiors and the energy efficiency of the buildings themselves are important to you as the owner, and your tenants, too.
It’s important to ensure that the upkeep that is necessary to prolong the life and efficiency of all the HVAC units in your apartment complex gets done, and done right, and some tasks you can actually complete yourself monthly and seasonally in between your scheduled maintenance call from your professional. These tasks can be:
- Make sure to use high-efficiency, pleated filters when you are replacing them. Filters of this type contain an electrostatic charge that works like a magnet to attract particles, such as dust or those that carry bacteria. Air filters need to be replaced in every unit, every 90 days
- Ensure that your landscaping company doesn’t allow grass to shower on top of any exterior units on the grounds while they are cutting your lawn areas so that you can be sure that your HVAC units stay free of grass clippings as well as leaves and pollen
- Keep at least two feet of space clear around all outdoor heating and cooling units
- Inspect refrigerant lines monthly
- In summer, turn off the water to the furnace humidifier
- Replace the humidifier filter and turn on the water ahead of the Fall season
- Replace your carbon monoxide detector batteries regularly
- Ensure outdoor AC units are on level, firm, and dry ground
- Clean AC condensate drains with bleach/water mixture on a routine basis
Your professional maintenance company can check all your apartment complex ductwork periodically, too, and this will ensure that everything is sealed properly and ready for your scheduled tune-ups on your apartment complex HVAC systems.
Here at SERVPRO of West Fort Worth, we make sure we maintain all the training and skill sets that are required for taking care of your HVAC system, and we also handle cleanup projects both large and small. We handle fire damage, water damage, and mold remediation, and we can get your home or business Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned!
Safety Tips For Using A Fire Extinguisher
OSHA states that fire is the most common emergency occurrence owners of homes and small businesses should plan for. One of the best ways to be prepared is by having a fire extinguisher readily available, making sure it’s properly maintained and audited, and by being educated on its proper use. This will already be a fire safety requirement for any business, and it’s a good idea for the homeowner, as well.
OSHA requires employers to train their staff thoroughly on how to use a fire extinguisher correctly and to accurately assess the situation if a fire is to occur so that it can be determined if/when an evacuation needs to take place. OSHA has established annual training for employees as a minimal requirement for all places of business, and this training is helpful for homeowners as well.
The PASS training technique is recommended:
- P. Pull the pin on the extinguisher.
- A. Aim the nozzle of the hose at the base of the fire.
- S. Squeeze the handle to release the extinguishing agent.
- S. Sweep the nozzle from side to side, directed at the base of the flames, until the fire is extinguished.
Once someone knows how to properly operate a fire extinguisher, they should then also be trained to follow fire safety protocol. Such training should enable anyone to be able to:
- Locate and activate the fire alarm.
- Call the fire department and emergency responders immediately.
- Determine a safe evacuation route that will direct people away from flames, excessive heat, and smoke. They should also know how to keep the route from becoming blocked
- Use the PASS technique for discharging a fire extinguisher (outlined above), and know the importance of backing away from the area if the fire flares up again.
- Evacuate the area immediately if the fire is still going and the extinguisher is empty, or if the fire grows beyond what can be safely handled without fire department personnel.
NOTE: Fire extinguishers are made to handle small fires only. If the environment becomes too dangerous, everyone should know when and how to evacuate. Excessive smoke and heat, impaired evacuation routes, and poor visibility are all conditions that can evolve very quickly, and people need to understand that safety comes first and foremost.
SERVPRO of West Fort Worth is here to help with cleanup projects both large and small and are dedicated to getting your business Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned. We also handle mold prevention and remediation, as well as fire damage and water damage.