Recent Posts

Typical Standby Generator Maintenance

5/18/2022 (Permalink)

Commercial power generator To avoid generator problems, you need to consider the required preventative maintenance.

Maintenance of a Standby Generator

The typical life expectancy for a generator is between 20,000 and 30,000 hours, serving a crucial role while waiting for a storm restoration company to come to your business. If you are looking to push the maximum number of hours and avoid generator problems, you need to consider the required preventative maintenance.

Weekly
You are going to need to perform small maintenance tasks every week. These include:

  • Running the engine
  • Checking for alarms or warnings
  • Ensuring adequate fuel levels for an emergency
  • Setting the engine to auto mode
  • Checking that the circuit breaker is closed
  • Ensuring there are no leaks

Monthly
On a monthly basis, you will need to spend more time checking fluid levels, such as the coolant and oil. You should also check the battery to ensure you are ready for a disaster.

Bi-Annual
You are going to want to check the thermal protection levels every six months. Use the appropriate tester for the type of coolant you are running in your generator in Emerald Bay, CA. At the same time, inspect the drive belts to ensure they have the proper tension and are in good condition.

Annual
A certified technician will need to come out every year and perform crucial tasks, such as changing the engine oil, fuel filter, air filter, and spark plugs. While there, they will also clean the crankcase breather. Aside from these tasks, they will also check various aspects of your systems, such as the coolant concentration. If any extra maintenance is needed, like a coolant system flush, your technician will perform these items at your annual service. Also, if you have a diesel engine, your technician will test and condition the fuel and remove any water from the fuel tank.
This list will get you started on your generator maintenance. Taking precautions like this can have many benefits for your business. The primary one is that you put off replacing your equipment longer.

A Close Look at 3 Types of Damage From a Fire

5/10/2022 (Permalink)

Visible damage to a commercial building following a structure fire Commercial building damaged by fire in Treasure Island, CA.

Three Types Of Damage From a Fire

A lot goes on in your building after a fire and it can be difficult to accurately quantify the damages amid the chaos. You might focus on the visible structural damage, but there could also be significant smoke damage that needs to be addressed. Working with a trusted local fire restoration company will help your company take care of all damage caused by a fire.

1. Soot Damage
These small, grainy particles from a fire can quickly spread throughout your building in Treasure Island, CA. Soot requires specific cleaning methods as it can penetrate porous items and find its way into the smallest openings. Just moving too freely in an area with soot can cause further spread of the particles, and using the wrong methods can cause additional and irreversible damage to equipment and sensitive systems.

2. Smoke Damage
This invisible presence after a fire poses many challenges for cleanup crews. Even after a thorough cleaning, the smoke odor can return in just a few days and linger for weeks or even months. The proper techniques and equipment are mandatory. A professional smoke cleaning includes the use of approved agents, a regimen of cleaning and sanitizing and the cleaning of personal items. In some cases, items have to be taken off-site for effective cleaning of smoke odors.

3. Water Damage
Nearly every significant fire also results in damage from the water used by fire fighting equipment. This should be removed at once, and then the affected surfaces and items should be dried completely. Specific measures for dealing with sensitive equipment such as computers and lighting must be followed. Failure to address water damage could lead to mold growth and other problems.
Issues such as smoke damage require advanced techniques from trained professionals. Cleaning up after a commercial fire is a multi-faceted undertaking.

What Are Storm Services and How Can They Help Insurance Agents?

5/10/2022 (Permalink)

Board on roof The team at SERVPRO responded and boarded up the roof after a storm in California.

What Are Storm Services?

When a major storm, such as a hurricane, strikes Dana Hills, CA, insurance agents can have great difficulty in finding any storm restoration available. Not only is this vexing for your clients (as well as you), it leads to greater damage when mitigation efforts aren’t applied immediately to storm damage. You need a top restoration company as soon as possible after a disaster.

What’s First?
As soon as the storm has passed, damaged buildings will be searched by a storm response team. The next step is to secure the property. This is done in three ways:

  • Reinforce the structure as necessary.
  • Remove any floodwater and squeeze out the moisture.
  • Tarp and board exposed areas.

That’s the job of the restoration company. They’ll bring in everything needed to reduce further damage.

What’s Next?
SERVPRO has a separate National Accounts Division to provide storm services directly to insurance agents and their clients. As a Preferred Vendor, they’re used to working closely with insurance company professionals to expedite the claim. They know exactly what forms you need and can often begin storm restoration within days – or hours!

What Do Storm Services Include?
As a Preferred Vendor, they can begin to protect the property even before the claim has been formally begun. Their top priority in a storm response is to prevent further damage.
To expedite the claim, all their files are available electronically through the cloud. With a computer or smart device, insurance adjusters and agents can share all the files instantaneously, dramatically increasing response times. It also removes any confusion or lost paperwork – and hard copies are also available, of course.
In a major disaster, SERVPRO can bring in assets from over 1,700 locations to begin the process even faster. Hundreds of local franchises will band together in a crisis to shift trained crews to where they’re needed, even for widespread flood damage.
The close collaboration between a Preferred Vendor and an insurance company ensures the highest quality storm restoration at a pre-arranged cost. It’s the best way to reduce stress for everyone involved.

3 Flood Prevention Tips for the Proactive Business Owner

4/18/2022 (Permalink)

The hands of a worker fixing a drain from a scaffold Before a storm rolls through, take some time to clean gutters, downspouts and other drainage areas.

Three Flood Prevention Tips For The Forward-Thinking Business Owner

According to National Geographic, floods are the most common and destructive natural disaster. Whether it's from melting snow, a broken levee or a severe thunderstorm, floods cause billions of dollars in damage, leaving business owners left to deal with flood cleaning. Being proactive is key to protecting your property, but it can feel overwhelming. Here are three flood prevention tips to consider before the next big storm rolls in.

1. Inspect the Building Regularly

Regular assessments of your building and its surroundings are one of the best ways to avoid flood damage altogether. An inspection can reveal areas that are susceptible to water damage, and it can highlight opportunities for repairs and flood-proofing. Pay close attention to basements and other low-lying areas, and take care of any repairs in a timely fashion.

2. Clean the Roof and Gutters

Before a storm rolls through Lantern Village, CA, take some time to clean gutters, downspouts and other drainage areas. These mechanisms are less effective for flood prevention when they're full of leaves and other matter. Keeping these areas clear will ensure that water doesn't back up into the building after heavy rain.

3. Manage the Landscape

Floodwaters move quickly, and many business owners don't realize the effect that landscaping has. Designs such as rain gardens or swales can help collect and redirect rainwater. Whatever you do, make sure the landscaping is designed so that water runs away from the property. If there's significant work to be done, hire a professional who can help design and implement a water damage prevention strategy for your building's exterior.

Being proactive about flood prevention can save you the headache of dealing with water damage on your commercial property. Maintaining your building's interior and exterior through regular inspections and cleanup are the easiest ways to keep your building dry all year round. If your building has already been impacted by water damage, a flood cleanup company can assess the water damage and identify a solution.

3 Tips for Buying a Smoke Detector

4/12/2022 (Permalink)

vector fire smoke carbon monoxide detector alarm Most smoke alarm brands will include the specifications for each unit, including its life expectancy.

3 Suggestions For Purchasing A Smoke Detector

Protecting your Dana Point, CA, home from the threat of fire means installing the right smoke alarm on each floor of your home. Choosing an alarm can be a puzzling process, but when you understand your options and keep a few tips in mind as you browse different styles, you may feel more confident and make the most informed choice possible.

1. Consider Your Home's Layout

Before you choose a smoke detector, think about your home's design and where units would be the most useful. For example, if you store paper goods and other items in your attic, consider installing a fire alarm there. Place them in long hallways with bedroom entrances and in bedrooms for additional protection.

2. Review Unit Life Span

Most smoke alarm brands will include the specifications for each unit, including its life expectancy. This is different from the battery life, as parts may wear out over time. If you want a low-maintenance brand, then consider buying one with a 10-year span and replace the battery at least twice a year. You can track the replacement easily by installing a new battery each spring and fall when Daylight Saving begins and ends.

3. Consider Smart Alarms

If your home is wired to your smartphone to control other alarms and lighting systems, then you may want to add one or more smart alarms to your one-touch arsenal of home security. A smart smoke alarm can alert you of a fire when you are not at home and allow you to test the unit wirelessly. You may want to consult a fire damage and restoration company about whether smart smoke alarms are a good choice for your home or if you should pair them with traditional detectors as part of your home fire safety plan.

Protecting your Dana Point, CA, home from fire and smoke damage does not need to be a confusing task. Understanding your options and considering the most efficient placement and type of alarm that can best work for you may help you make the best choice possible.

How To Know When It Is Time for a Plumbing Overhaul

4/6/2022 (Permalink)

Technician fixing an hot-water heater Many people ignore the home's plumbing system until it is too late. This often leads to repeated repairs for leaks, pipe breaks and similar issues.

When Is A Plumbing Overhaul Necessary?

Many people ignore the home's plumbing system until it is too late. This often leads to repeated repairs for leaks, pipe breaks and similar issues. The problem with this approach is that some plumbing issues can lead to significant water damage in a home.

Supply line damage is one example of a problem that could release hundreds of gallons into a home in Laguna Beach, CA. Though this water is likely to be clean water, it still has the power to inflict damage on flooring, walls, insulation and furniture. In some situations, a complete plumbing system overhaul might be the best solution.

Signs of Big Trouble

An occasional bathroom leak is fairly common and nothing to cause undue alarm. However, if the plumbing system experiences frequent breaks, especially in difficult-to-access locations, a replacement system might be in order. Still, it is important to carefully assess the situation by considering the following factors:

  • The age of the plumbing system
  • The lifespan of piping materials
  • The condition of the joints and fittings
  • The presence of corrosion

Each type of piping material has an expected lifespan. Supply line damage is rarer in PVC, copper and cast iron piping that is less than 50 years old. Brass and galvanized steel piping wear out more quickly.

A Reasonable Solution

While avoiding a supply line leak is important, a major replacement of plumbing is a big job. It can make sense to look for reasonable opportunities to replace plumbing components. For example, remodeling projects are great times to include a plumbing upgrade, especially if walls are being removed.

If major supply line damage does occur, calling in a water damage restoration company is the best way to avoid significant harm to a home. Trained technicians will remove standing water quickly and dry out the home to prevent future damage such as mold growth. Avoiding water damage is a worthy goal as is minimizing the consequences of a water disaster.

Roof Repair: Factors Affecting Insurance Coverage

3/24/2022 (Permalink)

Two roofers inspecting a damaged roof The team at SERVPRO responded and boarded up the roof after a storm in California. If you need help, call us!

Insurance Coverage For Roof Repairs: What Factors Affect It

When many homeowners think about storm coverage, they usually think about flood protection. Your home in Dana Point, CA, can just as easily suffer wind damage, though. Flying items can break windows and cause holes in your roof. There are several factors that affect whether your homeowner’s insurance covers damage to your roof and, if so, how much it covers.

Prevention Measures

Most insurance companies want to make sure the damage listed on your claim was indeed caused by wind and not the neglect of routine maintenance. There are several steps you can take to increase the likelihood that the damage will be covered:

  • Quarterly professional inspection
  • Impact-resistant shingles
  • Regular maintenance and repair
  • Proper landscaping to minimize debris during a storm

Being able to show that you have taken the appropriate precautions to minimize roof damage in the event of a storm improves your chances of being covered by your policy.

Documentation

One of the first calls you will make after wind damage occurs is to your insurance company. An adjuster will come assess the damage detailed in your claim. You probably want storm mitigation experts to start repairs before the adjuster arrives, however, to prevent further issues. It’s important to take pictures or videos of the original damage and to list all the repairs that need to be done. Document everything you list in your claim.

Value of Roof

As parts of your home age, they depreciate in value. If your roof is more than ten years old, the insurance company may not foot the entire bill, especially if you need total roof replacement. You may get partial coverage for its current value. Even if the roof is newer, the insurance company may not pay the full cost of repairs or replacement if it was significantly worn before the most current damage happened.

The best way to know how much of the wind damage repairs your insurance company will cover is to ask. Your agent can detail the factors involved in making decisions about claims.

5 Causes of Pipe Noises

3/6/2022 (Permalink)

Water piping tube installed externally along the bathroom wall to supply water for a heater. If you have water damage in your home, you can count on SERVPRO, we offer our cleanup and restoration services around the clock, 7 days a week.

Pipe Noises: 5 Causes

Noisy pipes can be distracting, but these sounds may also indicate an increased risk for a pipe break. Find out more about five common causes of pipe noises.

1. Abrupt Flow Stops

An abrupt stoppage of water flow may cause banging or chattering noises. Stops may be due to the manual control of faucets, malfunctioning toilet components, or appliances that draw on water.

2. Appliance Valves or Pumps

A dishwasher or washing machine supply valve may cause banging or chattering noises when the water flow shuts off. A water pump without a holding tank can make similar sounds. These noises do not indicate heightened risk of a pipe break.

3. Faucet Washer

A whistling noise may indicate that a faucet washer is distorted or that the brass screw that holds the washer in place is loose. Replacing the washer or tightening the screw should stop these noises.

4. Toilet Ballcock Valve or Overflow

A malfunctioning ballcock valve or overflow may result in hissing noises. Shut off the water supply and adjust these components or contact a plumber.

5. Vibrating Pipes

In addition to abrupt stops of water flow, excessive pressure levels can cause pipes to vibrate and may increase the risk of a pipe burst. If pipes are in good condition, a homeowner may want to consider installing anti-hammer devices, pipe straps, or specialized shock-resistant chambers to keep pipes from making contact with walls. These components may help to prevent broken pipes, severe water damage, and the need for cleanup and restoration.

Any of these factors may cause plumbing to make banging, chattering, hissing, or whistling noises. If the cause of noises is not evident after an inspection, contact a plumber in Laguna Beach, CA. Some sounds may indicate the presence of issues that can result in a pipe break and the need to fix broken pipe and restore water damage.

2 Ways To Find Out If You Have Mold

3/3/2022 (Permalink)

Mold on a wall Mold infestation can quickly grow out of control. If your business is suffering from a potential mold infestation, don't wait! Call our SERVPRO team!

2 Ways to Determine If You Have Mold

Property owners never want to hear the news that they have a problem with mold. Unfortunately, it’s not uncommon to find mold in commercial buildings. Mold is found everywhere, including indoors and outdoors, and doesn’t cause a problem unless it is allowed to grow. Mold spores feed on moisture, which is why it’s commonly found in areas such as bathrooms and kitchens. To the untrained eye, it may be difficult to identify mold. An indoor environmental specialist is someone who has been certified on mold and moisture problems. Here are two ways to find out if you have mold in your Dana Point, CA, building.

1. Do an Inspection

One way you can find out if you have a mold problem is by doing an inspection. You can walk around your building and look for signs of mold, such as discolored ceilings and walls. It’s also possible to smell mold. An area that has significant mold growth may produce a musty odor, similar to damp, dirty socks. If you think you have a problem with mold, it’s best to get help from an indoor environmental specialist.

2. Contact a Professional

While it is possible for you to see or smell mold, it’s not advised to take care of the problem on your own. Remediating mold in commercial buildings is a major project due to the large size. Mold can spread quickly if left untreated, but thankfully mold remediation specialists are available anytime for emergency service. Once professionals arrive at your business, they will begin a thorough inspection to understand the extent of mold growth. After inspection, professionals will contain the mold, clean the air, remove damaged materials, clean belongings and restore the property.

It can be difficult to determine if there is a mold problem at your Dana Point, CA, business. Fortunately, an indoor environmental specialist can conduct a mold test even if there is no visible sign of mold. Rely on trusted professionals to help you remediate a mold problem.

Flush Your Water Heater As a Gift to Your Guests

2/10/2022 (Permalink)

Man's hands unscrewing a screw-nut on a water heater with a wrench on a boiler A water heater flush is easy. Water-related destruction is much more difficult to deal with because of the varied materials involved.

As A Courtesy To Your Visitors, Flush Your Water Heater.

’Twas the eve after guests arrived and all through the house, nobody could shower, not even grandma. When was the last time you flushed the water heater at your house in Aliso Viejo, CA? If it was more than a year ago, it’s time. If you’ve never flushed it, you may receive a rude awakening at the worst time possible.

Yes, You Can!

Forget table cloths and napkins, and listen up! You are probably thinking of reasons why you can’t do this now, but you don’t want your houseguests to go without showers for the holidays. Here are some dispelled myths about flushing a water heater.

Myth: You are too busy.
Fact: If you have time to drink some coffee, then you have time to do this. Most of the job involves waiting.

Myth: It’s too much work.
Fact: Your job is to hook up a hose and turn a knob. Gravity does all the hard work.

Myth: You don’t know how.
Fact: You are about to learn.

How To Do the Flush

It may sound like a cool dance, but it doesn’t take that much energy to flush a water heater. Here are the steps:

  1. Find the breaker and shut down the power.
  2. Attach a hose to the faucet at the bottom of the tank.
  3. Turn the spigot and watch it flow!
  4. Open the pressure release valve at the top and turn on your kitchen faucet to hot.
  5. Close the water supply valve.

When it’s all done, it’s time to close any valves you opened and fill the tank again. The water and the hose are very hot, so be careful. Finally, turn on the power when the tank is completely full.

Help During the Holidays

A water heater flush is easy. Water-related destruction is much more difficult to deal with because of the varied materials involved and the risk of secondary damage from mold. You can call a water remediation professional to help see you through the disaster recovery, so you can go back to sipping eggnog by the fire.