Should I have my air ducts cleaned in our office?
Most homeowners are aware of the importance of air duct cleaning. Unfortunately, not all office building owners are as diligent as they should be when it comes to cleaning air ducts. Learn why cleaning ducts on a regular basis is a good idea.
What is air duct cleaning?
Duct cleaning generally refers to the cleaning of various heating and cooling system components of forced air systems, including the supply and return air ducts and registers, grilles and diffusers, heat exchangers heating and cooling coils, condensation drip pans, fan motor and fan housing, and the air handling unit housing. If not properly maintained and operated, these components may become contaminated with particles of dust, pollen, or other debris.
Why air duct cleaning is important for office buildings
Ventilation systems are often the biggest culprit in poor indoor air quality. Making it a priority to inspect the ductwork of your business building is a good idea to prevent the accumulation of dust, pollen, and other debris in your ducts. If your HVAC has been operating for some time without attention, it may be time to inspect them to see if it’s time for a cleaning.
This is especially true if your system is running constantly during hot summer months, or if you recently did renovations that created a significant amount of dust. If you haven’t cleaned your system and its vents, it could be circulating one or more of the following:
- Dirt and debris
Cleaning your air ducts helps restore peak efficiency of your system, can prevent odors, and can help reduce the potential of mold growth. Not sure if you need a cleaning? If you see excessive dirt around your air returns, it’s a good idea to contact SERVPRO!
Contact SERVPRO for your air duct cleaning
SERVPRO of Carrollton can routinely inspect the heating, ventilation, and air conditioning unit (HVAC) in your commercial building. Keeping them clean can extend the life of the equipment. This can in turn save you money and give you cleaner air to breathe.
When its time to clean your office building’s air ducts contact SERVPRO of Carrollton's cleaning professionals at (972) 446-0383!
What steps should I take after a house fire?
Fire is not something that any family wants to deal with but it is helpful to know a little bit about the restoration process in case you ever do run into this type of issue. There are a few different steps that will facilitate the restoration process and each is critical to your family getting back up on their feet after a fire.
The first step is to talk to your insurance company. The vast majority of homeowner’s insurance companies have clauses that will help put you in contact with a restoration company and that will help you pay for the process. This will ensure that you can get the best company for the best price.
Secondly, a restoration company will first and foremost work to remove the water from the home. Leaving water in a home for a long period of time can end up in mold growing which can make the home even less livable. Removal of water can take a few hours to a few days depending on how much water was pumped into the home to stop the fire.
In cases where the home is a total loss, no steps will be taken and the insurance company will move to help have the home leveled. The second step is to clean up debris; cleaning debris allows the restoration company to get an even better look at what damage was done so that they can begin to assess an action plan to determine what can be saved and what must be trashed.
After debris is removed, restoration companies will use an ozone machine to remove the smoke smell and will start to clean the walls and floors to make sure the smoke smell is gone. The next step is construction; most restoration companies will work with the homeowner to create a reconstruction plan to get your home back on track.
The Benefits of Hiring a Professional Damage Restoration Company in Order to Avoid Liability Risks
Blog Summary: SERVPRO of Carrollton advises that businesses hire a bonded, insured, and certified damage restoration company when a property damage disaster occurs.
SERVPRO of Carrollton, a damage restoration company serving the areas of Carrollton, Bent Tree, and Dallas, employs highly trained and certified professionals who use advanced equipment, the latest technology, and superior cleaning methods to handle all types and sizes of residential and commercial property damage disasters. As a member of a franchise family composed of over 1,700 partners, the SERVPRO of Carrollton team is an excellent choice when a swift response, quick action, and highly trained technicians are needed for a commercial cleanup and restoration project in Carrollton, TX.
An OSHA Fact Sheet entitled “Keeping Workers Safe During Disaster Cleanup and Recovery” informs employers and workers of the hazards associated with the cleanup and restoration of a property damage disaster. The document reads, “Natural disasters can cause widespread flooding and damage to property and infrastructure. Cleanup and recovery activities involve hazards that can cause serious injuries or death. OSHA urges employers and workers engaged in cleanup and recovery to be aware of these hazards and how to protect workers.”
When a business, office complex, or manufacturing facility suffers water damage, fire damage, smoke damage, sewage spill, or other types of property damage disaster, the cleanup and restoration must be accomplished swiftly, thoroughly, and safely. Long delays impact revenue and customer service. The consequences of failing to thoroughly clean up a property damage disaster can have a negative long-term impact on the health of the occupants and the equipment, machinery, supplies, raw materials, and inventory. Secondary water damage can lead to other issues, including catastrophic structure failure and mold infestation.
The OSHA Fact Sheet urges employers and employees to assess the situation and identify any safety hazards to which cleanup and restoration crews will be exposed. The fact sheet enumerates a wide array of hazards arising from the cleanup and recovery from different types of disasters. Here are some of the hazards identified by OSHA:
Disaster: Flood or Other Water Intrusion
Floodwaters, sewage spills, ruptured pipes, or other water intrusions create issues such as:
- Bacteria and other organisms from contaminated water, soil, and sewage
- Toxic substances from the industrial site
- Mold and fungi growing on wet or moist surfaces
- Burns and electrocution from water-soaked electrical panels, machinery, and damaged wiring
- Slips and falls on slippery surfaces
- Tripping over uneven surfaces or debris hidden under murky, muddy water
Cleanup Task: Tree Trimming and Debris Removal
Severe weather can topple trees, break limbs, and generate large amounts of debris that need to be removed from entrances, parking lots, loading areas, equipment, company trucks, employees’ vehicles, and the building itself. The temptation for key decision-makers, such as the operations manager or the property management supervisor, is to put employees to work cutting up fallen trees and hauling debris.
- Injuries from falling tree limbs
- Injuries from chain saws, chippers, and other equipment
- Strains or sprains from lifting tree limbs and debris
- Heat exhaustion from overexertion
Disaster: An Industrial Fire, Smoke, Water Damage Disaster
A commercial fire creates a complex and multifaceted challenge. Employees working in cleanup and restoration are exposed to a potentially fatal hazard matrix. Some of the serious hazards that employees tasked with cleanup and restoration may encounter include:
- Respiratory injury from inhaling toxic soot, ash, and gases
- Skin, eye, and nose irritation
- Injury from falling or collapsing debris
- Slip-and-fall incidents
- Back strain from lifting water-soaked items
Employees may be exposed to dangers of varying degrees, such as:
- Falls from ladders, roofs, scaffolding, and aerial lifts
- Carbon monoxide poisoning from working around gas- or diesel-powered generators in a confined environment
- Heart attack, stroke, or heat exhaustion from working in an unventilated or under-ventilated area at extreme temperatures
- Wound infection from exposure to water contaminated with sewage, soot, ash, and chemicals
- Exposure to toxic substances, asbestos, lead-based paint, dioxins, or other harmful or deadly chemicals created, spilled, or released by the fire or efforts to extinguish the blaze
- Being struck or run over by vehicles or equipment used in the cleanup and restoration process
The OSHA Fact Sheet quoted above also addresses the rights of the employee to have a safe working environment, adequate training for the job, and necessary protective gear related to the task at hand. A grievance procedure is also mentioned for employees who wish to file a complaint.
Concerning worker’s rights, the document states, “You have the right to a safe workplace. The Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 (OSH Act) was passed to prevent workers from being killed or seriously harmed at work. The law requires that employers provide their employees with working conditions that are free of known dangers. OSHA sets and enforces protective workplace safety and health standards. OSHA also provides information, training, and assistance to workers and employers. Workers may file a complaint to have OSHA inspect their workplace if they believe that their employer is not following OSHA standards or that there are serious hazards.”
Liabilities and Litigation
In the push to return to business as usual, management may enlist the services of employees to handle water removal, cleanup, and restoration. Without proper training, adequate PPG, commercial-grade equipment, advanced cleaning techniques, and industry-standard cleaning solutions, employees will not be able to safely, quickly, efficiently, and safely clean up and restore the property.
The liability of potential litigation from accidents and any health effects stemming from working in a dangerous and contaminated environment could be catastrophic for the company. The best course of action is to entrust the cleanup and restoration to trained, bonded, and insured professionals who have the equipment, training, and PPG to achieve the goal of resuming normal business operations as soon and as safely as possible.
Professional and medical offices, businesses, manufacturing plants, distribution centers, educational institutions, and retail outlets can trust the restoration experts at SERVPRO of Carrollton for water, fire, storm, and commercial damage restoration. They offer twenty-four-hour emergency service, faster to any size disaster, highly trained restoration technicians, and advanced restoration and cleaning equipment.
For more information about Bent Tree, TX, commercial damage restoration services, contact the SERVPRO of Carrollton office by phone at (972) 446-0383 or by email at office@SERVPRO10952.com
Last Minute Storm Damage Prevention Strategies for Carrollton, TX, Property Owners
Blog Summary: When storms and severe weather are approaching, homeowners can take several last-minute steps to protect their property from damage. After the storm, Carrollton, TX, homeowners can trust SERVPRO of Carrollton to provide damage restoration services.
Last-minute storm damage prevention strategies are essential when severe weather approaches with little or no warning. In minutes, blue skies and a gentle breeze can transform into dark, billowing clouds spawning tornadic winds, damaging hail, and torrential rains. Homeowners are left with minutes or even seconds to prepare the home and yard for the turbulent weather.
The team at SERVPRO of Carrollton offers three last-minute strategies that a homeowner can implement to protect against storm damage. These quick tips take little time to execute but can prevent damage from fierce winds, large hail, and torrential rain.
- Put up or tie down potential projectiles.
Often, the yard, patio, and deck collect items that can become airborne during a tornado or other storm. Many homeowners are unaware that other types of winds, such as microbursts and straight-line winds, can reach very high velocities and cause as much damage as a tornado.
Yard furniture, toys, or debris hurtling through the air at up to fifty miles an hour can break windows and glass sliding doors, pierce siding, mangle gutters, and collapse unreinforced garage doors. This damage can cause a massive water intrusion, especially if the storm is accompanied by torrential rain. The water damage disaster can be devastating.
These wind-driven projectiles can also damage vehicles, inflict personal injury to humans and pets, and damage outside equipment such as the HVAC unit, satellite dish, spa, or boat. Should any of these missiles of mayhem dent the neighbor’s new vehicle or crash through their large bay window overlooking the backyard, the owner of the offending projectile may be held liable for any damages or injury.
If severe weather has been forecast or is on the horizon, take immediate proactive steps to relocate items such as patio furniture, plant pots, bicycles, grills, garbage cans, and children’s toys into a garage or storage building. The garage door needs to be a modern, reinforced version able to withstand high winds and impacts from windblown objects.
Consider wind-proofing vulnerable yard fixtures with discreet ground anchors. The items may blow over, but they will not take flight causing property damage and personal injury. In the event of severe weather, the need to rush around relocating items to the garage or a securely anchored building will be reduced. A task that would have required many hands and much time could be reduced to only a few items and a few minutes.
- Keep vehicles in the garage.
The initial cleanup to make room for one or more vehicles might take several hours and a few trips to the waste disposal station, but it could prove well worth the effort. In the garage, vehicles are protected from hail damage, dents and scratches from wind-driven debris, and a broken windshield from falling branches. Sealed behind a reinforced garage door, vehicles are safe. Reinforced garage doors are also known as:
- Reinforced impact-rated garage doors
These steel-reinforced doors are designed to withstand winds up to 200 miles per hour, which is stronger than a Category 5 hurricane. On the other hand, a standard garage door may fold and crumple under the force of a 20 mile an hour wind.
Prevention strategy: Park vehicles in the vehicle-ready garage and lower the door before the wind and hail arrive.
- Close the garage door and all interior doors.
An open or broken window and an open door allow the structure to fill with air, causing a dangerous increase (as much as 30%) in the forces pushing upward on the roof.
Prevention strategy: Compartmentalize the home by closing all the windows and doors.
Why pre-qualify a property damage restoration company?
In the event of widespread severe weather in Carrollton, TX, the demand for water damage and storm damage restoration will be very high. Avoid the mistake of trying to find and choose a reputable company during or after the disaster. Make one call now to pre-qualify the Carrollton SERVPRO team. When disaster strikes, make one call to secure the services of a trusted and proven property damage restoration company, SERVPRO of Carrollton, TX.
For more information about Carrollton, TX, storm damage restoration services, contact SERVPRO of Carrollton by phone at (972) 446-0383 or by email at office@SERVPRO10952.com
Four Red Flags Homeowners Should Be Aware of When Choosing a Damage Restoration Company
Blog Summary: SERVPRO of Carrollton highlights mistakes that homeowners make and red flags they overlook when choosing a company for damage restoration services.
SERVPRO of Carrollton is committed to providing customers with reliable emergency damage restoration services from the customer’s first contact with SERVPRO to the completion of the restoration project. Crews arrive within one hour of the call. After a thorough inspection and assessment, customers are presented with a written estimate that includes documentation and images. SERVPRO of Carrollton handles insurance claims while also working closely with the customer. The Carrollton SERVPRO is locally owned and operated. The business will be around for many years after the project is complete.
When homeowners need water damage restoration, fire and smoke restoration, or mold remediation, they want to hire a reputable professional restoration company they can trust. Since any disruption to life is stressful and inconvenient, the goal is to find a company as quickly as possible so that life can return to normal. A homeowner looking for property damage restoration at 2:00 am is usually in crisis mode.
Homeowners should not let an unscrupulous restoration company take advantage of their situation. Listed below are some danger signs homeowners should be aware of to avoid making the mistake of choosing an untrustworthy restoration company.
Red flag: The company offers instant estimates.
In the aftermath of a fire damage disaster or water damage disaster, the frantic homeowner is tempted to hire a company that can provide an estimate over the phone and can start work immediately. The homeowner should avoid any restoration company that claims to deliver an accurate estimate of the project without looking at the scene. A credible estimate requires a thorough inspection of the damage by a trained professional, an assessment of the extent of the damage, and an accurate calculation of expenses using industry-standard software such as Xactimate. An estimate that carries weight with an insurance provider must have sufficient documentation that includes photos. An estimate of this quality requires in-person damage inspection and assessment. Surprises will only serve to make a difficult situation worse.
Red flag: The company lacks or refuses to show paperwork.
Paper trails are essential. Proper documentation leads the homeowner to the most reputable, experienced, and trustworthy property damage restoration companies in the community. It is a good business practice to request the following documentation:
- General contractor license if the company claims to be a general contractor
- Verification of insurance and bonding
- A written estimate along with the contract for the provision of services
This request for documentation is customary and not out of the ordinary for a reputable property damage restoration company. A franchised company may have a quality control and customer service process that requires the company to provide this documentation to every customer for every job. Make sure the licensing, insurance, and bonding are current. This request will filter out unqualified or unscrupulous competitors.
Red flag: The company requires upfront funding or offers a large cash discount.
A large-scale disaster such as a hurricane, tornado, or flood attracts home services companies, tree trimming companies, and property damage restoration companies near and far. The vast majority of these responders are great Americans who lay aside their comfort and convenience to serve their neighbors in need who have been displaced from their homes by a large-scale natural disaster or other crisis.
Red flag: The company lacks the proper certifications.
When hiring a damage restoration company, beware of service providers that do not have certifications to back up their work. Look for certifications from industry-standard certifying bodies, such as the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification.
Regrettably, scammers take advantage of unsuspecting homeowners caught in a crisis and in need of immediate assistance. First, the scammer will pressure the desperate homeowner to make a large down payment to cover materials. Second, the scammer will offer a sizable cash discount if the homeowner immediately hires the company to do the work. If the job is started, it is not finished. Even if the scammer finishes the job, the workmanship and materials will be inferior, and the company will conveniently disappear.
Trust the proven experts at SERVPRO of Carrollton for water, mold, fire, and storm damage restoration. IICRC-certified in a variety of restoration disciplines, the team provides twenty-four-hour emergency service. The technicians are highly trained restoration professionals who live in the communities that they serve.
For more information about the Dallas, TX, damage restoration company, contact SERVPRO of Carrollton by email at office@SERVPRO10952.com. The office can also be contacted by calling (972) 446-0383.
Old Documents and Water could turn in to a MOLD disaster!
When water damage struck this archives room at a local church, the results were potentially catastrophic. Hundreds of irreplaceable documents with mold damage that needed to be cataloged and taken off site to be restored.
Luckily, they called SERVPRO of Carrollton, and we were up to the task! We are currently working through all of the documents as we speak and will get them all back in the archives room after we make the mold damage “Like it never even happened.”
If water, fire or mold damages your priceless possessions, give us a call!
We are ready to use our equipment, expertise and experience to get things back to preloss conditions for you!
Give Blood This Holiday Season!
With the holidays around the corner, when we aren't cleaning up after water, fire and mold destruction, our staff works together in the community with a variety of projects to give back.
At SERVPRO in Carrollton, we try to be as active in the local community as we can be. We will be partnering with Carter Blood Center and setting up a community Blood drive at our office in Carrollton, TX.
If you are interested in participating, please send an email to our office at office@SERVPRO10952.com.
Or call for more information 972-446-0383.
Sewage Back up in your home.
When sewer lines become obstructed, preventing wastewater from flowing through drainage pipes, blockage occurs. The thick, black water that forms as sewage is a potential hazard, as it contains contaminants and viruses that can present a risk of severe illness if exposed to humans or animals.
If you have a sewage backup in your home you will need to fix it quickly. However, knowing what causes sewer backups can help you prevent a hazardous situation in your basement or home. Here’s how to prevent and handle sewage backups in your pipes:
Causes for a Sewage Backup in the Basement
- Clogs – Sewage can back up into your home when either your home’s drain pipes or main sewer line becomes clogged. For example, if one toilet creates a sewage backup, the drain connected to that toilet will likely be clogged. But if all toilets or bathtubs in your home create backflows, then there may be a clog in the main sewer line or the sump pump failed. Clogs can consist of hair, grease, or other solid materials that end up in the drains.
- Tree Roots – Trees can grow really long roots that intertwine with your sewer line. Roots can grow into a pipe and cause holes or crush the sewer line by growing around it. Even if the roots in your yard are not the problem, roots from nearby trees can reach your sewer line and damage it.
- Damaged Sewer Lines– In the past, pipes were made of cast iron and clay piping which don’t last very long. Aging sewage systems can break down and crack, causing sewage backups and flooded basements. Plastic sewer lines have now become the norm.
- Heavy Rainfall – Can heavy rain cause sewer backup? Yes, large amounts of rain can overburden your city’s sewer lines. If the public sewer can’t handle excess rainfall, the water can make its way into connected sewer lines. This puts your home at risk of water backflows.
How to Prevent a Sewage Backup-
- Don’t pour grease down the drain. Cooking oil can harden within your pipes; it gradually stops debris from draining, creating a clog. To properly dispose of grease or fat, pour it into a heat-resistant container and throw it in the trash after it cools off.
- Dispose of paper products properly. Flushing hygiene products such as paper towels, diapers, or feminine products down the toilet can easily clog your sewer line. Save yourself some trouble and discard paper products in the trash.
- Install a new plastic pipe or cut tree roots. To prevent tree roots from damaging your sewer lateral (the line buried in your yard),replace it with a new plastic pipe. If tree roots still grow in your sewer lateral, cut the roots occasionally.
- Install a backwater prevention valve. This fixture allows sewage to leave but prevents it from backing up into your home. Backwater valves are typically installed into a sewer line and sometimes into a drain line in the basement.
- Sewage pump maintenance. Ensure your sump pump doesn’t sit on debris such as silt or gravel, which could be sucked up into the pump, ruining the motor. Instead, place it on a steady flat brick. Also, ensure the sump basin has a filter fabric around it to stop debris from coming in.
Water Damage from Sprinkler Systems in Commercial Properties.
An automatic sprinkler system is a very valuable tool in fire suppression and prevention. Even so, by some uncontrollable event or if not properly maintained, these systems may fail.
This failure could result in disaster by fire or from serious water damage from the sprinklers if water is unexpectedly released.
Common Causes for Sprinkler System Failures
- Freezing of water filled pipes
- Mechanical damage
- Installation defects
- Deliberate sabotage
- Overheating from excessive temperatures
- Corrosion of sprinklers, fittings, pipes, and other components
- Environmental stress cracking of PVC plastic sprinkler pipe and fittings
- Manufacturing defects, including recalled sprinklers
Potential Hazards of Water Damage
- Damage - Destruction to property
- Disruption - Loss of use of property during repairs
- Health Effects - Mold can develop causing health effects
- Costs - Repair and/or replacement of sprinkler system
- Reputation - Lost customers or tenants due to unusable space
- Maintain fire sprinklers in accordance with recognized standards
- Ensure installations are completed by experienced and licensed contractors
- Take action to reduce chances of system freezing
- Call SERVPRO of Bent Tree and Carrollton if water damage is experienced in your facility.
SERVPRO has the experience and professional staff to bring your property back to its preloss condition quickly and efficiently.
How to eliminate an odor in your home or commercial property.
Following a fire or water loss in your home or office, there could lingering odors in the air. The technicians at SERVPRO of Carrollton may utilize deodorizers as odor treatments; but if something more powerful is needed, we have specialty deodorization equipment to eliminate the odors.
Ultra Low Volume (ULV) Foggers will atomize liquid deodorizing agents, producing a fine mist that easily penetrates sites where odor-causing residues accumulate. The ULV Fogger can also be used to apply fungicides and disinfectants. If needed, the ULV Fogger can also be used to inject the fungicides and disinfectants into wall cavities and other difficult-to-access areas.
Thermal Foggers dispense solvent-based products in large volume, dense fogs suitable for confined areas. The fog consists of tiny particles of deodorant solution that pair with and neutralize odor-causing particles.