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Preparing Your Business for Winter Storms

10/24/2019 (Permalink)

Snowstorm, snow-covered street and cars Winter storm in Harrisonville, MO

Inclement weather can hit at any time, but it is especially expected during winter. As a business owner in Harrisonville, MO, it's crucial to stay aware of weather conditions and have winter storm preparedness plans in place. Here are some tips for getting your building and your business plans winter-ready before severe weather hits.

Keep Tabs on the Weather

One key to protecting your business against severe weather is prevention. A combination of watching the weather closely and keeping up with regular inspections and maintenance of your space can save you a lot of trouble. Keep roofs, windows, doors, drains, and plumbing systems up to code. Check these areas closely before a period of severe weather and address any necessary repairs. If you anticipate a winter storm, take care to watch its path and prepare your building for potential storm damage.

Keep Employees Informed

If the weather forecasts show a likely blast, prepare your employees accordingly. If your business can run while they work from home, prepare them for this. If your business can't operate remotely, you may need to shut it down for the duration of the storm. If shutting down is also not an option, you can create a team of essential employees and offer to put them house them in a nearby hotel so they can get to work safely. Whatever you decide, communication with your employees is crucial.

Keep Emergency Contacts Handy

Even the most prepared business can succumb to nature's will. Keep yourself organized and have the contact information for local authorities, preferred insurance providers, and professional water damage restoration technicians at the ready. Store their numbers in your phone and write them down, as well. In the event of an emergency, such as a pipe break, accessing this information easily can feel like a lifeline.
Nobody is immune to the effects of a winter storm. With some diligence, you can minimize the damage, and with the right team of professionals, you can get your business back up and running fast.

Cleaning up Sewage Water

10/16/2019 (Permalink)

Toilet and sewer water on the floor Sewer damage in a Belton, MO bathroom

While any type of water damage in your Belton, MO, home is unpleasant, a sewer backup brings its own unique woes. Along with being a dirty job, sewer cleanup means that contaminated water has infiltrated your home. Cleaning it goes beyond just mopping it up.

Types of Water

There are three types of water that can make their way into the home.

  • Clean Water – Water directly from a water source such as supply line or faucet.
  • Gray Water – This is water that has some relatively harmless contamination such as from washing machines, flooded toilet that has no waste or a dishwasher.
  • Black Water – Microbes, sewage and harsh chemicals have tainted this type of water. If the problem is from flooding, it should be considered this type since it traveled through various environments to reach your home.

Cleanup Expectations

When it comes to sewer cleanup, safety precautions need to be taken. In many cases, contacting a professional to assist with the problem will ensure it is done properly. During the cleanup process, extra steps are needed to ensure the home is free of contaminants.

Personal protection gear should be worn to avoid contact with possible contaminants. This includes rubber gloves and boots, eye protection and a face mask.
Block off the flooded area to avoid it spreading to other areas of the house.
Sewage water should be eliminated as quickly as possible. The best ways include a pump or filtered wet vacuum.
Soil and debris affected should bagged and thrown away, as well as any saturated carpeting, rugs, insulation and other porous materials.
Personal belongings should be sorted and taken out of the home. While some items may be salvageable, some will likely have to be thrown away such as an food or items that can’t be washed.
Once everything is removed, let the area thoroughly dry. Along with opening windows, if possible, use fans.
Sanitize, sanitize, sanitize. Any area of the home that has been touched by black water needs to be cleaned with bacterial cleansers.

Sewer cleanup is not a fun job, but it is necessary to ensure your home gets back to normal.

How To Prevent and Recover From a Clothes Dryer Fire

10/10/2019 (Permalink)

Dryer lint filter has been pulled out and has been cleaned to prevent fires A lint fire caused by your dryer can be prevented

Ways You Can Properly Maintain Your Dryer in Order to Prevent a Fire

While smoking materials are the greatest cause of residential fire deaths each year, it’s surprising to learn that, according to the United States Fire Administration, clothes dryer fires cause an estimated 2,900 fires annually in residential buildings. Many individuals fail to recognize the importance of maintaining their clothes dryer. Here are some ways you can properly maintain your dryer in order to prevent a fire.

Prevention

No one wants to experience the devastating effects of a fire. While most individuals are aware of how to prevent fires caused by smoking, cooking, and lighting candles, many people are ignorant of how to prevent a fire caused by a dryer. Here are some things you should do to prevent a dryer fire:

  • Have your dryer installed by a professional. This ensures proper installation.
  • Wipe the lint filter clean after each cycle.
  • Check behind the dryer for lint accumulation and that the venting system isn’t bent or crushed.
  • Make sure your outdoor vent is protected from weather elements.
  • Ensure that the cover for your vent opens when the machine is operating.
  • Snake the dryer exhaust periodically. This ensures clear ductwork and decreases your chance of a lint fire.

Recovery

If you or someone you know have experienced a fire caused by a clothes dryer, there is help available. Because fires can cause significant damage, they necessitate professional help. Work with fire restoration specialists to get your home smoke-free. There are several steps a professional will take to restore your home:

  • Inspection
  • Boarding up compromised windows and doors
  • Removing smoke and soot from all surfaces
  • Cleaning
  • Restoring walls, paint and carpet

A lint fire caused by your dryer can be prevented. Take the necessary steps to properly clean and maintain your clothes dryer. If you’ve experienced a dryer fire, work with restoration specialists in Harrisonville, MO, to get your home clean again quickly and safely.

How To Keep Your Toilets Healthy in a Commercial Building

9/27/2019 (Permalink)

Clogged toilet A clogged toilet in a Belton, MO building

How To Avoid a Clogged Toilet?

Some of the most important amenities of any commercial building in Belton, MO, are the toilets. Although they serve a vital function, they are often overlooked. What can you do to avoid a clogged toilet and keep them in good working order?

What Goes In

Toilet paper can be a source of clogging if too much is used. In a business or commercial building it's hard to keep on top of everyone's toilet paper use. One way to ease this pressure is to buy thin toilet paper. This solution can be a lot cheaper than thick, name-brand toilet paper, as well. You should also make sure to communicate that things other than toilet paper should not be flushed down the toilet- if it gets clogged, you could end up with a bathroom full of sewage.

What Comes Out

If water or sewage is coming back out of the toilet, you may have a problem. There are several issues that could be at play:

  • Clogged toilet
  • Leaking water line
  • Cracked bowl
  • Improperly sealed footing

These types of problems can get worse if left alone. They can also cause water damage. In addition to a plumber, you may consider calling in a water damage remediation specialist to return your bathroom to its original state.

What Sticks Around

Changing the behavior of bathroom visitors can go a long way to prevent toilet overflow. Providing multiple labeled waste receptacles, especially for things such as feminine products, can help to reduce the amount of material that is flushed down the pipes. You can also put up signage to point these out and to state what should not be going in the toilet.
A clogged toilet can leave visitors or employees of your building with a bad impression. Keeping your bathrooms clean and functional should be a top priority of your maintenance crew. A few preventative measures can make a big difference.

Saving Your Belongings From Mold

9/19/2019 (Permalink)

Furniture with mold Furniture with mold

Saving Your Belongings From Mold

A flood in your home can be traumatic, especially as you and your family sort through what’s left and get on with your life. Mold cleaning is just one of the issues you may face in the aftermath of water damage in Harrisonville, MO. Here are a few things to consider when it comes to saving your belongings.

Toss It or Treat It?

When things get wet, they can get moldy. Most people’s first impulse is to throw everything away, but that is not always necessary. Mold remediation may work with some items, such as the following:

  • Upholstered items – couches, chairs, ottomans
  • Fabrics – draperies, clothing, bedding
  • Surfaces – walls, woodwork, bookcases, tables, counters, cupboards
  • Sentimental items – books, photographs, paintings, figurines
  • Electronics – televisions, audio equipment, computers

What Will the Cleaning Process Involve?

Mold cleaning for hard surfaces usually involves spraying with a disinfectant, wiping the item and leaving it in the sun, if possible. Upholstered furniture is often cleaned with a foaming cleaner that is vacuumed off, depending upon the severity of the mold damage. Items that can be wet or dry cleaned include curtains, clothes, blankets, sheets and pillows.

Cleaning of electronics can be tricky, but the most important thing is to get them out of the damp environment as soon as possible, and to refrain from turning them on. The company you hire can advise you on whether or not the items can be cleaned or should be replaced.

Can It Be Saved?

The most difficult decision in these situations is what to do about keepsakes and items of sentimental value. Mold damage on books and paper items can be very serious, although there are companies that do photo restoration. Paintings can be cleaned if not damaged too badly, and statues and keepsakes with hard surfaces such as vases, dishes or trophies usually clean up well.

Seeing your life in a moldy pile can be heartbreaking. Fortunately, mold remediation specialists can help you make wise decisions about mold cleaning.

4 Must-Do Tasks When There’s a Sewage Backup in Your Bathtub

9/11/2019 (Permalink)

Sewer water coming out of a bathtub and sink Sewer backup in a Belton, MO bathroom

Prevent Further Damage in Your Home From Sewage Backup

When a sewer backup occurs and there is sewage in your bathtub, it is important not only to clean it up as soon as possible but also prevent it from happening again. If the backup is minor and has happened recently, you can attempt to clean it yourself. However, major backups will generally require professional help and you should not attempt to unclog them. If you wish to tackle the backup yourself, here are four things that you should do immediately to prevent further damage in your Belton, MO, home.

1. Use Proper Safety Equipment

Before you even enter the bathroom, ensure that you have the appropriate safety gear, such as a face mask, eye protection and rubber gloves. It is important that your skin does not come in direct contact with the wastewater from the sewer backup.

2. Remove the Water

Do your best to remove the standing water from the tub to prevent it from leaking and flooding other parts of your house. If the water is deep, you may need a pump. If it isn’t very deep, a wet-dry vacuum is all you may need to clean up the bathtub backup.

3. Remove and Clean Any Saturated Items

Remove anything that has been touched by the wastewater immediately. Some items, such as carpets and saturated baseboards, will need to be replaced and may require water damage repair. Items such as clothing and anything that can be easily cleaned should be sanitized as soon as possible.

4. Open Windows and Allow Sun Inside

Once the water and waste is handled, open your windows and blinds to allow airflow and sun to dry things out. If there was any flooding, sunlight can help to stop the growth of bacteria and reduce humidity.

A sewer backup in your home can be disastrous. However, damage can be prevented as long as you follow these steps or you contact a professional if further help is needed.

Is Your Plumbing Covered By Insurance?

8/21/2019 (Permalink)

Leaking kitchen faucet in Harrisonville, MO

Plumbing is a hugely important part of your home in Harrisonville, MO. It can also cause a lot of damage if not properly taken care of. Before that happens, understand and adjust your flood insurance policy accordingly.

Leaky vs. Broken

There is a difference between the need to fix broken pipe and a leaky pipe. A leaky pipe or a crack in your foundation can cause gradual damage, or a slow accumulation of water. Usually insurance policies exclude this kind of damage, and it is written off as wear and tear. A broken pipe, however, can cause sudden flooding and is most likely covered under flood insurance or an all-perils policy. To be sure, you should carefully review the wording of your insurance policy and call a representative for further clarification. You can also add these coverages to your plan if you wish to be prepared for all possibilities.

Types of Damage

Sometimes the type of damage or water damage remediation services that are covered differ in each policy. This is dependent upon the wording. The following are common verbiages in insurance policies:

  • Initial damage refers to the damage to the pipe or water system itself
  • Resulting damage refers to water damage that is the result of a broken pipe or flood
  • Subsequent damage refers to mold prevention and the replacement of carpet, drywall etc

Negligence

Insurance coverage can deny your claim if the leaky or broken pipe is a result of your negligence. This means that they will only cover accidents that weren't easily preventable. For example, not keeping your home heated during a freeze can cause pipes to burst. If you ignore a leak that becomes a broken pipe some time later, this can also be considered negligence. It is important to stay on top of routine maintenance and inspections to prevent such occurrences.
The world of insurance can be difficult to interpret. If you don't know exactly what to expect out of your policy, it can also become frustrating. Take the time to get to know your flood insurance policy and understand what you're covered for.

Understanding Flood Insurance, Requirements and Benefits for Your Business

8/14/2019 (Permalink)

Storm damage due to rain in Belton, MO

What is Flood Coverage?

Most businesses require a commercial insurance policy to operate, but not all require flood insurance, which can lead to questions of whether such a plan is necessary. Questions regarding necessity depend on location and regulation, while some businesses can operate without concern for flooding, others face the threat of floods seasonally. Therefore, to understand whether a flood policy is right for your business, you must first understand what flood coverage is and what your risks are when it comes to rising water levels.

1. Understanding Flood Coverage

Flood coverage is for instances of large-body flooding. For example, overflowing rivers, heavy rains leading to storm surges, snowmelt, broken dams, or even blocked storm drains and systems. Typically, this type of coverage kicks in when the flooding affects two acres or at least two properties.

2. Determining Risks

While flood insurance is a decent policy to have, it is not necessary for every state, city or location. There are designated flood zones throughout the country where it is wise to have this type of coverage. However, even in some flood zones, the risk of flooding is minimal, meaning that insurance is suggested but not required.

3. Knowing About Requirements

However, there are some areas of the country where flood coverage is required just like commercial policies. The requirement is often put in place by the local government to help avoid losses and financial disparity.

4. Coverage and Restoration

While some commercial policies will cover the cost of a storm remediation specialist in the Belton, MO, area, most commercial coverage is limited to rain and wind damage. Therefore, if a flood occurs and you do not have adequate coverage, the business is left to fund the restoration alone.
Flood insurance is not a requirement everywhere. However, even in places where it is not a requirement, a business may benefit from the extra protection. Contact a local specialist and discuss how to best protect your business for unexpected weather disasters.

3 Ways Tarp Services Can Benefit Businesses After Fires

8/7/2019 (Permalink)

Roof tarping after a fire in Harrisonville, MO

Tarp Services Can Be Beneficial To Businesses

Fires in Harrisonville, MO, can cause damage to all aspects of a business, including a building's roof. However, many business owners are unsure what the fire cleanup process looks like when it comes to their businesses' roofs. However, tarp services can be beneficial to businesses for a variety of reasons.


1. Protect Your Roof From the Elements

Before a roof repair can begin, it's often important to first protect your business's roof from outside elements. Wind and rain can often cause additional damage to your property's roof. Additionally, debris such as tree limbs that land on your already damaged roof may cause further destruction. Fortunately, placing a tarp on your roof can usually help to protect your roof from wind, rain and debris.

2. Mitigate Damage

If a roof that has sustained damage is left uncovered, it may cause damage to the interior and exterior of your building. Loose roof tiles can damage siding and other exterior elements of your building, and a damaged roof can also cause water to leak into your business. If your building's roof has caused extensive damage to your business, you may want to consider contacting emergency fire cleanup services. However, you can often avoid interior and exterior damage by placing a tarp over your property's roof.

3. Expedite the Restoration Process

A quick restoration process is often important to business owners. Unfortunately, the restoration of your building can often be slowed down if your roof causes additional damage to your building or if your roof sustains secondary damage after the initial fire. As a result, it may take your business an extended period of time to reopen. However, by preventing further damage and protecting both your roof and your building, a tarp on your building's roof can ultimately help to quicken the process of restoration.

Understanding why placing a tarp on your roof can be a helpful part of the fire cleanup process can be useful to business owners. Knowing that a tarp can protect your roof, mitigate damage, and quicken the process of restoration can help to put your mind at ease after your business has sustained fire damage.

How Containment Techniques Prevent Cross Contamination

7/22/2019 (Permalink)

Equipment needed for containment include disposable protective clothing

When it comes to mold cleanup, one of the main concerns mold remediation experts may have is preventing cross contamination. Cross contamination may occur when spores spread into other areas that did not previously have a mold problem. This often occurs when people turn to DIY techniques that may blow spores around rather than truly clean up the mold growth.

Why Containment Is Important

The EPA recognizes two main reasons for the importance of containment. The first is to prevent mold spores from forming new colonies in other areas of a building, and the second is to minimize the exposure of people to mold. Equipment needed for containment include the following items:

  • Exhaust fan linked to the outdoors
  • Disposable protective clothing
  • Respirators
  • Goggles
  • Gloves

What Types of Containment

There are two main types of containment: limited and full. The larger the area affected by mold, the greater the risk of mold contamination during mold cleanup. The size of the contamination coupled with how heavy the mold growth is, usually dictates whether or not full or partial containment will be required. Sometimes heavier mold growth may prove to be a higher risk than the size of the problem.

For limited containment, specialists may use polyethylene sheeting to close off the affected area. A slit in the sheeting provides access to the treatment area. Duct tape can be used to secure the sheeting to the floors and ceiling. If there are more than 100 square feet of affected area, then full containment may be required. For this, specialists may need to build a decontamination chamber or airlock.

Mold cleanup requires technical skills and know-how that makes it a bad choice for a DIY job in Belton, MO. It may also require special gear to further decrease the likelihood of cross contamination. By prioritizing the prevention of mold spores from spreading, building experts can save themselves time and money. Otherwise, time would have been spent cleaning various rooms throughout the building that become contaminated in close succession of each other.