THE ADDITIONAL COSTS OF FIRE DAMAGE RESTORATION YOU MIGHT NOT KNOW ABOUT
Fires are devastating and can cause major damage to your home or business, which can often require you to hire licensed professionals to make the repairs. The extent of the damage will all depend on the fire itself, how it started, and how long it burned, and how it was put out. A few determining factors when it comes to fire damage restoration cost will be:
- The number of affected rooms
- The amount of damage
- Repairs needed
It is estimated that fire and smoke restoration will cost approximately $4.50 per square foot, so for a 2,600 square foot home, this adds up to about $12,000. You probably also know that water damages will be extensive, since this is what is often used in the fighting of the fire. Water can damage walls, floors and furniture, and if not handled quickly, the damage can get worse over time. In addition, mold can easily take hold in damp conditions.
There are a few additional costs of fire damage restoration that you might not know about, such as:
- Soot removal and cleanup. Soot can build up on curtains, walls, and carpets, and can cost anywhere from $2,000 - $6,000, depending on the size of the home or business.
- Cleanup of burnt materials. All the materials that have been burned and are no longer usable or are obstructive will need to be removed by professionals, and this additional cost can be $50-$100 per pound.
- Smoke damages. Clothing, carpet, and draperies absorb smoke, and the strong odor left behind will only get worse over time. Cleanup must take place at the source, and only after soot and water damage are removed. Thermal fogging and Ozone treatment are two of the most common methods, and can cost $200-$600.
- Air ducts. Vent and duct cleaning will prevent lingering odors from spreading.
In the event of a fire at your home or business, call the SERVPRO of Belle Meade/West Nashville professionals for help with fire damage restoration, water damage restoration, mold remediation, and so much more. We are here to help.
TOP SOURCES FOR COMMERCIAL WATER DAMAGE
Planning ahead can keep your commercial property safe from water damage. Just keeping an eye on the places where water can become an issue for your business will help you stay ahead of the game. Some of the top sources for commercial water damage can include:
- STORMS: Winter and Spring bring lots of water, either by steady rains, or ice and snow, and all that water can cause a lot of problems. Make an inspection around your place of business; are you prepared for wet weather? Take note of weather stripping and poorly fitting doors and windows and the drainage for your parking areas and entryways as well as all warehousing and manufacturing outbuildings.
- EQUIPMENT FAILURES. Unexpected events such as a burst pipe in your parking area or under a sink, or a broken or misdirected landscaping sprinkler can easily create problems by sending large amounts of water to the wrong places. In shops and warehouses, water damage can come about from broken pipes or equipment failures, such as pumps, etc.
- WATER MAINS. These kinds of situations come from circumstances that are out of your control, but you do want to keep them in mind. Make sure your parking areas and entryways can stay open in the event that your area streets are flooded due to a burst water main. You know you will have to wait for the city or county to come and correct the problem, and you want to stay in business.
- LEAKS. After wet weather, you may realize you have smaller water damage issues that you hadn’t noticed before. The roof of your office area, your warehouse, or your storage area needs to be properly cared for as well to protect your product, machinery, and office furniture from water damage through leaks and seepage.
If you have sustained water damages to your home or commercial property, the team here at SERVPRO of Belle Meade/West Nashville is ready to help in any way we can. We have the expertise to handle water and fire damage and specialize in mold remediation.
HVAC CLEANING AND MAINTENANCE THAT WILL IMPROVE THE AIR QUALITY OF YOUR BUSINESS
Hiring a professional to inspect, clean, and maintain your HVAC system will save you time and trouble. You will want to schedule an inspection every fall and again in spring, after the heavier use months during winter and summer. Your professional will inspect and clean all the wiring and mechanisms of your business’ HVAC units, which requires training and expertise. Scheduling regular inspections, cleaning, and maintenance of your HVAC will greatly improve the air quality of your business, and that will be good news to everyone - staff and guests alike.
As a business owner, there are several simple maintenance chores that you can do to prolong your system’s life and increase its efficiency between professional inspections and maintenance, such as:
- Get a high-efficiency, pleated air filter for your system.
- Keep your heating units and AC free of pollen, leaves, and grass.
- Keep two feet of space clear around your outdoor AC and heating units.
- Inspect refrigerant lines every month.
- Replace your air filters at least every 90 days.
- In the summer, turn off the water running to the furnace humidifier.
- In the fall, replace the humidifier filter and turn the water back on.
- Replace the carbon monoxide detector battery
- Make sure your outdoor AC unit is on firm and level ground
- Clean AC condensation with a bleach and water mixture
Caring for your HVAC properly throughout the year will keep the air quality and atmosphere of your business pleasant and healthy, which keeps your staff happy and content. It will also save you money by improving and maintaining the energy efficiency throughout your buildings and premises.
The SERVPRO of Belle Meade / West Nashville team has the expertise necessary when it comes to inspecting and maintaining your HVAC system, and we are here to answer any questions you might have. We are also experienced in large cleanup jobs such as those needed because of fire damage or water damage, and we are pros at mold remediation.
IS YOUR HOTEL PREPARED FOR STORM DAMAGES?
Storm damages can be devastating to a business of any kind, and your hotel is no different. This kind of weather event can take a significant amount of time and expense to repair. There are several steps you can take to prepare your Nashville hotel for Spring storm season and possible flooding; preventive measures will reduce the number of storm damages your business could sustain and the time it can take to bring your operations back to normal. Is your hotel prepared for storm damages? Here are a few things to think about:
- MAINTENANCE. The most important factor in the battle against damages to your hotel is going to be regular, and thorough, maintenance. Planning ahead for the possibilities of a severe weather event is going to keep your business damage free, or at least lessen the severity. If your hotel is surrounded by mature trees, keep them properly trimmed and healthy. If your building has rain gutters, make sure they never become clogged with debris to avoid water damage and be sure to keep your parking and entries/exits free of obstructions so that people can get in or out quickly and remain safe.
- INSPECTIONS. Employ a professional to inspect your property regularly to make sure nothing is missed. Replacing roofing, siding, or windows after a storm will be annoying and costly, and a proper inspection program can prevent those types of restoration projects from being necessary.
- STORM DRAINS: Storm drains need to be maintained properly. These are in place to move excess water away from buildings and parking areas. Your local government is usually responsible for this, but keeping an eye on them around your property will allow you to be able to report a problem right away and to be ready for storm waters and possible water damage.
- RESPONSE PLAN: Have a plan ready for your hotel staff. In the event of flooding, make sure you have a system in place to communicate to everyone so that they know whether to come in to work or not. No one should drive through flooded roadways and intersections. Listening to weather updates will keep you informed, and you’ll want to make sure you keep an emergency preparedness kit on site.
Responding quickly to storm damages will get you back to business right away, and the team here at SERVPRO of Belle Meade / West Nashville is here for you, 24/7. SERVPRO of Belle Meade/West Nashville specializes in water damage, fire damage, storm damage, mold remediation, and more!
ODOR REMOVAL AND DEODORIZATION FOR YOUR APARTMENT COMPLEX
Due to the large numbers of people (and pets) that reside in your apartment complex, there are some serious odors that can become a challenge at times. Cigarette smoke, cat litter, and spoiled meat odors are just a few of the smells that can become offensive and troublesome very quickly. If a new resident has moved into an apartment where odors were prevalent, for example, you as the owner could wind up with some contentious conversations that could even lead to legal trouble.
When readying a unit in your apartment complex, make sure the area is completely aired out. You can leave doors and windows open for at least 24 hours, or invest in an air purifying system that can be moved from unit to unit to aid you here. A “home-grown” method that many swear by is to place vinegar or coffee grounds into a bowl and leave in the room with the odor issues. It should be allowed to sit there for several days, and each room should be treated with its own bowl. This method is economical and earth-friendly, too.
Carpet cleaning and/or replacement can be a huge benefit here since carpets are notorious for trapping odors. A green method you can employ is using baking soda: sprinkle it on the offending carpet and leave for 12 to 72 hours. After vacuuming, your unpleasant smell issue should disappear. Steam cleaning is also an option, and a professional cleaning company can be employed here to get the job done in a timely manner. If not, it may be time to consider replacing those old carpets with wooden floors. If you go this route, be sure to instruct your residents on using wood-friendly cleaners, since improper cleaning here can create all-new odor issues.
Washing windows and mirrors regularly can help with cigarette smoke odors, believe it or not. These surfaces get covered with residue and the resulting smell, and cleaning them with vinegar and water can be the perfect solution to the problem. Blinds and drapes can also be culprits and will need to be removed and cleaned. Vinegar is a big help here, too, or you can enlist the help of a professional cleaning company.
If there is still a lingering odor issue, replace HVAC filters and clean the air vents, and even replace the light bulbs. Cigarette smoke, in particular, is very invasive and affects every surface imaginable. Thoroughly cleaning the ceiling may also be a big help here.
When it comes to odor removal and deodorization in your apartment complex, SERVPRO of Belle Meade/West Nashville has the experience and expertise needed to get rid of the problem.
TOP COMMERCIAL SPRING CLEANING PROJECTS
Winter is just about to end, and with Spring right around the corner, every commercial business owner will have a completely new set of cleaning projects to think about due to seasonal weather. Now is a great time to complete some of your top commercial Spring cleaning projects that will help get your business ready for the coming busier season. Here are two top projects:
- Interiors. With more sunlight coming in your interior windows, you will see areas that need to be touched up. Deep cleaning, as well as refreshing touches by painting and other aesthetic maintenance, will help your business look its best. Some areas in your interior spaces that will need attention this Spring include:
- Landscaping/Parking. Your landscaping will probably need attention after a rough winter, and a fresh paint job will be a big improvement, too. Clear out brush and trash that was blown onto your property by winter winds and engage a professional company to come and clean your parking areas.
- Warehousing/Storage. These outlying areas could probably use a refresh after winter, too. Take a good look at them and take steps to help them look their best.
Here are some things to keep in mind as you consider those commercial cleaning projects for your workspaces:
Professional help. Any kind of commercial cleaning needs professional help. Professionals make the job easier. Research businesses with a local history and lots of positive reviews. A reputable company will make that sure your Spring cleaning projects are done right by following your precise instructions and making your business shine.
Going green. An important factor these days to consider is the well-being of the environment. Using environmentally sound products has a lot of advantages. Products that aren't made from harsh chemicals can help without the potential for allergic reactions from those who come in contact with them. New products on the market today make it easier than ever to get the results that you and your customers are sure to love.
Team effort. It helps to enlist the assistance of other members of your team when planning seasonal cleaning. Together, you can determine the best dates for the cleaning. You can also talk about the kind of cleaning that will need to be done in individual spaces.
The team here at SERVPRO of Belle Meade / West Nashville is committed to assisting business and commercial property owners with all their Spring cleaning projects and endeavors.
Caring For Your Belongings Following a Fire
Fire damages will affect both the structure of your home and your belongings, as well. Smoke and soot can ruin furniture, clothing, and keepsakes-- the very things that make a house a home.
It may be necessary to contact professional help when it comes to restoring items affected by fire damage, or water damage and mold growth, too. The expertise of such a company can help you save money in the long run, all while preserving those precious, irreplaceable heirlooms. There are several methods that can be used to clean your items:
- Dry Cleaning. For cleaning lighter residues as well as for preparation before wet-cleaning.
- Wet Cleaning. Effective for removing both moderate and heavy residues.
- Spray and Wipe Cleaning. Used for items that cannot be wet-cleaned.
- Foam Cleaning. For upholstery and other fabrics that can shrink or bleed if wet-cleaned.
- Abrasive Cleaning. Uses agitation of any surface being cleaned.
- Immersion Cleaning. A bath of cleaning product is used; items are dipped in and soaked.
Electronics that have been damaged by fire often present serious hazards. No device should be turned on if it could possibly have been damaged by fire. Smoke residues contain acids that corrode metal surfaces, and if they are not removed, that corrosion can cause electronic failure in that device. Taking prompt action will prevent further damages to your devices. Some of the devices you should be careful of include:
- Television sets
- DVD players
- Cell phones
- iPads and Tablets
When documents, such as photographs, contracts, wills, etc. are damaged by water or fire, extreme care will need to be taken to ensure the document is not completely lost. Although in some cases it may not be possible to return every document to pre-fire condition, a professional restoration company can certainly save a good deal of them and minimize additional damage. Depending on the type of document and level of damage, there are five professional methods used for document restoration:
- Air Drying.
- Freezer Drying
- Vacuum Freeze/Vacuum Thermal Drying
When you have suffered a fire, handling the damages following that fire can be overwhelming. The SERVPRO of Belle Meade / West Nashville team can help you in caring for your belongings and premises during this process.
The First Steps in Disaster Restoration For Your Business
After any natural disaster, you as a business owner will be left wondering where to start when it comes to picking up the pieces. You not only have to worry about repairing your own home, but also your commercial property. If your building has experienced severe damages, here are some disaster restoration tips to help you get your business back up and running as soon as possible:
- Safety First. Safety should always be priority number one, whether you are a business owner, a homeowner or both. Even after extreme weather is over and flood waters begin to recede, for example, flooding is still a danger. Potential electrical hazards may exist, and gas leaks and water contaminants are often present - these issues will not be readily apparent to the untrained eye, so enlisting the help of professionals to determine whether there are safety hazards to remove will be a smart decision. Your property should remain off limits until an experienced inspector determines all structures and grounds are safe.
- Insurance Claims. Begin your claim filing process for any major damages as soon as you are able. Dealing with insurance companies can be a frustrating and time-consuming process, so contacting your insurance agent right away will help get you on the road to recovery sooner rather than later. You can contact them periodically with details about the damages as they emerge, but being proactive in starting the process will save you stress in the long run.
- Damage Survey. Take your time in processing the damages your business has sustained. It will be an emotional experience, more than likely, so don’t be surprised by that. As you assess the scope of the destruction, take plenty of pictures and make detailed notes for your insurance claims and company records.
- Salvage. Remove any undamaged items or those things that you know can be repaired, and store them in a safe place until the disaster restoration of your business is completed. Make any minor fixes that you are able to handle, but don’t hesitate to contact professionals for assistance in the big stuff.
- Professional Help. Damage restoration companies know how to handle projects of all types and sizes, and their expertise will help you get back to work quickly. The team at SERVPRO of Belle Meade / West Nashville can guide you through the entire process.
There is hope after a disaster, and you can recover. We are here to help you with all your disaster restoration needs.
Water Damage Prevention Tips for Your Hotel
The best way to prevent water damage in your hotel is to be aware. Take time to look around, especially after wet weather and check for signs of a problem. Damage to the walls and foundation areas of a building are extremely important to repair as soon as possible in order to avoid larger structural and property damages in the future, which can end up costing far more in the long run.
Here are some things to look for:
- Look for changes in the color or texture of surfaces. Wallpaper or paint might be peeling away or appear discolored. Check for bowing in the walls, which can be a result of long-term seepage. In service areas on lower floors that may have unfinished walls, you will want to look for a white, salty substance known as “efflorescence”. This usually appears on foundational walls and will tell you how high water has risen. If flooring is swollen or removed from the subfloor, that is another indicator of water damages.
- Make sure your staff is well-trained on how to check for leaks and maintenance needs, and establish a system they can use to get important information about those needs to the people who arrange for repairs and upkeep.
- Cracking can occur in the foundation and/or the floor, and it is often due to water damage. Look for cracks in window seals and door panes, as well.
- Odors are an indicator that there is an excess water problem. Oftentimes, it’s mold or mildew that causes those smells, which means you have water damage on your hands.
- Keep drainage areas well-maintained in expectation of summer storms; directing water away from your buildings will stop any problems before they even start! Pay special attention to guest parking areas and entryways to alleviate the possibility of lawsuits from dangerous situations that can arise through water damages.
Once you have found that you have water damage, it’s probably time to call a professional general contractor. These people are experienced and trained to repair and renovate spaces that have extensive damage from excess water due to leaky pipes, flooding, etc.
The team at SERVPRO of Belle Meade/ West Nashville is the team to call for cleanups after water damage or fire damage, both large and small. We are mold-remediation experts, too!
What to Do if Your Business Floods
Whether flooding occurs without warning, as in a flash flood, or from a slow business during, or after, a heavy storm, it is a common occurrence in many parts of the country. West Nashville is no different, and as I’m sure you are all aware, Nashville has a history of flooding! Today we are highlighting some important steps to consider as a business owner if your location should experience flooding.
BE VIGILANT. Even if you think the risk of flooding will be low, it’s important to be vigilant. Understand your location’s potential exposure; you can reference the NOAA Advanced Hydrologic Prediction Service’s quarterly updates and maps to see what areas are at higher flooding risk during certain times of the year. Historic flooding maps are also a helpful resource. Just knowing the potential rates of rising waters and how long it would take to drain off will be important pieces of information for you as a business owner.
INFORMATION. Be sure you keep copies of insurance documents and other key business information in a flood-safe location. Using the cloud for storage of business-related information will be essential when it comes to the potential loss of documentation.
BUILDING PREPARATION. Prepare your location for a flooding event. Investing in a sump pump could help to minimize damages, as well as maintaining gutters, drains, and roofing. Anchoring any fuel tanks is also a good step to take.
EMERGENCY PLAN. Create a flood evacuation route and share it will your workforce so that they know how to get themselves and any customers to higher and safer ground if it becomes necessary. Invest in an emergency kit and keep it well-stocked, in case people get stranded in the building.
Flooding is dangerous, and kills nearly 100 people yearly, in addition to causing an average of eight billion dollars in property damage in the U.S. yearly. Being prepared can keep your business and your workforce safe in the event of a flood.
When it comes to a flooding event, SERVPRO of Belle Meade/ West Nashville is here to help. We specialize in cleanup projects of all sizes, so call us for assistance if your business experiences any kind of disaster.