How To Lower Your Commercial Water Bill
If your building has water issues, lowering your water bill is easy.
There are many potential water issues that commercial property owners have to contend with. A large utility bill may be one of them. Whether you are a new or seasoned property owner in Phoenix, AZ, you can benefit from these tips on how to lower your water bill in your commercial buildings.
Upgrade Your Restroom Fixtures
Many of the standard fixtures in your company's restrooms use more water than they need to. In order to save on water costs, you can purchase a water upgrade to the current fixture or a completely new fixture altogether:
• Low-flow toilets
• Flush valves
• Hands-free faucets
• Waterless urinals
Rather than depending on employees to conserve water, these upgrades conserve it for you by consuming less water with each use.
Rethink Your Irrigation Settings
Your irrigation may be what is causing your water issues and eating up your usage. Remediation experts recommend that you check for leaks in your system on a regular basis to make sure that you are not putting your nearby building at risk for water damage. If you are choosing new plants, try out species that don't require a lot of water to thrive. Make sure all your sprinkler heads are aimed at the grass and other plans instead of the sidewalk so that you are not wasting water on something that doesn't need it. Finally, put your irrigation system on a regular schedule but make sure you remember to override it when you need to.
Monitor Your Meters Separately
You don't know how well you're doing unless you can monitor your progress. To track how well the measures you have taken to lower your bill have worked, you need to be able to see the different charges separately. Have your irrigation system on a separate meter from your building. That way, you know which measures are working or which ones need tweaking.
If your building has water issues, lowering your water bill is easy. By upgrading a few fixtures and keeping track of how much each system is using, you can save yourself quite a bit of money. For more information, visit http://www.SERVPROnorthwestphoenixanthem.com/.
What Goes Down Should Not Come up: Tips for Preventing Sewage Backup
A sewer backup, usually caused by storm damage or flooding, is about the worst thing a homeowner can expect to find in their home. The good news for all homeowners, however, is that there are ways to prevent it from happening.
1. Do Not Pour Grease Down the Drain
First and foremost, do not under any circumstances pour grease down your drain. Made of oil and fats, grease, while a liquid during and immediately following cooking, solidifies when it cools, expanding slightly. It is the expansion of grease that causes problems in your pipes as it creates blockages.
2. Trap Food Waste and Hair
Since clogs and blockages are among the leading causes of sewer lines backing up, it makes sense to prevent things from flowing down the drain that can cause this issue. A simple item you can purchase is a drain trap, essentially a mesh cup that sits in your drain or on it, preventing hair, food, and other things from traveling where they don’t belong.
3. Know the Never Flush Five
It would be impossible to talk about preventing a backup without mentioning the never flush five: hazardous chemicals, paper towels, feminine products, diapers, and cloth rags. Each of these items can cause significant blockages, and household cleaners can even add to the deterioration of already damaged pipes.
4. Use Baking Soda and Vinegar
Beyond being vigilant about things you put down the drain, you can also perform monthly routine maintenance with a mixture of baking soda, vinegar, and warm water. This tidy little solution will help to break down buildups in your drains, possibly preventing significant issues in the future.
5. Call a Professional
More often than not, it pays to have professionals from the Phoenix, AZ, area come out and inspect your lines, even performing some routine maintenance like sewer cleaning. These individuals will have the tools and the knowledge to check and repair any drainage issues or concerns.
A sewer backup is not likely on your bucket list; therefore, it is a good idea to use as many preventative measures as possible to limit the likelihood of you ever experiencing this type of problem. For more information, visit http://www.SERVPROnorthwestphoenixanthem.com/.
3 Steps for Media Blasting: Eliminate Mold Under Your Home
Over time, flooding and wet weather can cause mold to grow under your home, which can damage the structure and create unpleasant odors.
If your Phoenix, AZ, home has a crawlspace, you may already know that it can be prone to moisture damage. Over time, flooding and wet weather can cause mold to grow under your home, which can damage the structure and create unpleasant odors. However, professional cleaning techniques, such as media blasting, can remove mold from this area in a safe and permanent manner.
1. Determining the Mold Problem
Once you call in a mold damage and remediation service, the technicians will likely come to gauge the severity of the problem before they begin the blasting. They may inspect the entire area within the crawlspace to determine how far the mold has spread and what type they are dealing with. This preliminary exam can help them exterminate the fungi with more efficiency.
2. Preparing the Media
Next, your mold techs will probably explain how they will eliminate the mold with media blasting. In most cases, mold blasting is performed with baking soda. Not only is this more effective than using bleach or other water-based chemicals, it is also safer for people, pets and the environment. The techs will used pressurized spray machines to blast away the mold, which can also be more efficient than scrubbing it away by hand.
3. The Spraying Process
Once the blasting begins, the treatment can take up to several hours, depending on the severity of the mold growth. The baking soda can remove mold from wood and other surfaces without leaving any lasting damage. Afterward, your techs will likely clean the area and remove any excess media. Once the treatment is complete, you may get a report on the results and whether your home might need future treatments.
Your Phoenix, AZ, home’s crawlspace can house important systems like your fuse box or HVAC controls. Soda blasting can protect these components and the rest of your home from the serious damage mold can do. For more information, visit http://www.SERVPROnorthwestphoenixanthem.com/.
Protect Your Business With a Fire Contingency Plan
You don't need to wait until the possibility of fires arises. Instead, plan ahead with fire protection equipment, appropriate planning, and training.
A business fire can lead to serious damages to company equipment, inventory, and property. As a business owner, you're responsible for providing fire prevention and staff education to reduce the chances of losses. Fortunately, there are several valuable resources to help you create an effective contingency plan.
1. Access Expert Resources
There are a number of professional handbooks and fire safety code publications available today. Your insurance company may provide access to some of these resources, and you can also find many of the publications on the internet or by contacting local firefighters. In some areas, the government pays for visits from fire marshals who help you identify areas of risk, and help you put together an effective evacuation plan.
2. Invest in Safety Equipment
You'll also find that the right safety equipment is key to protecting your business assets and staff from the fire. As part of your contingency plan, invest in an automatic sprinkler system and regularly inspect smoke detectors and fire extinguishers. Did you know that some extinguishers can be used on electronics without shorting out the devices? Be sure to ask professionals about these safety tools.
3. Involve Your Employees
Enlist the cooperation of your staff and employees. After all, the people who work with you are the most valuable asset of your business. Make sure that all employees know the plan for a fire evacuation and practice a fire drill at least once every year. Keep your evacuation plan posted where employees can refer to it easily, especially near exits. Make sure fire escapes routes are always kept clear. Finally, your plan should include a first aid strategy. Place first aid kits where employees can easily access them.
Turning to professional resources in Phoenix, AZ, and putting together an effective contingency plan is key to protecting the lives of your employees and your property. You don't need to wait until the possibility of fires arises. Instead, plan ahead with fire protection equipment, appropriate planning, and regular training. For more information, visit http://www.SERVPROnorthwestphoenixanthem.com/.
Storm Preparation Tips for Property Managers
Having a storm preparedness plan is essential.
Management of a commercial property in Phoenix, AZ, comes with quite a few responsibilities. One of the most important of those tasks is storm preparedness, particularly if you live in an area that experiences frequent hurricanes or other storms. It is your duty as manager to make sure your information, property and people are all protected in an emergency situation.
Protecting Your Information
While it's a smart idea to back up all your files in a remote location on a regular basis anyway, doing so has extra benefits during storm season. There are several key pieces of information that you will need to be able to access when disaster strikes:
• List of emergency phone numbers
• Contact information for trusted storm restoration specialists
• Storm preparation plan of action
• Emergency contact list for all employees and residents, including information about children and pets
• Business continuity plan outline
• Essential financial information, such as bank routing numbers
Your storm preparedness plan should include access to all the files you need to continue operations. Don't let damage to your building get in the way of your business.
Protecting Your Property
One of the first calls you should make after your building suffers storm damage is to your insurance company. The more quickly you report a problem, the more quickly an adjuster can come out and survey the damage done. Key members of the property management team should accompany the adjuster to point out issues discovered during their own inspection so that nothing gets overlooked.
Protecting Your People
When you manage a residential property, your primary concern after a storm is the safety and security of your residents. They have been through an ordeal and are likely going to need your support. As the property manager, it is important for you to have a system in place to communicate consistently with all parties affected by the displacement. Having a plan in mind for evacuation and temporary housing can help improve a bad situation.
Having a storm preparedness plan is essential. It's not enough to protect your commercial property. You also must protect the people it serves. For more information, visit http://www.SERVPROnorthwestphoenixanthem.com/.
A Homeowner's Guide to Dealing With a Flood
Do you need to clean up some water damage?
Water damage can affect your Phoenix, AZ, home for a variety of reasons. You may notice issues due to the following situations:
• Torrential rain
• Sewer backups
• Plumbing issues
When these problems lead to standing water in your home, you may not know the best way to remedy the problem. Use this quick guide to help you best address the damage.
Turn to a Professional
The first thing you should do when you need to start a water cleanup is call in a professional for help. A team familiar with residential water remediation can find the source of the flooding, remove standing water, clean up your belongings and repair the damage to your home. Experts can tackle the project with speed and know-how.
Talk With Your Insurance
Depending on the source of the flooding, your insurance policy may help cover some of the costs of the repairs. Get on the phone with your insurance provider as soon as you can to start the claims process. Your agent may want photos of the damage and receipts for the repairs.
Dry Out Belongings
Chances are your repair team will remove the standing water from your house, but some of your belongings may have been affected by water damage too. A content cleaning professional can help you dry out your possessions before putting them back in your home. If you skip this step, you may introduce excess moisture back into your cleaned-up space.
Fix the Source
If the flooding happened because of broken pipes, you need to address the problem. Fixing the source of the water issue can help you avoid the same situation in the future. Adding a sump pump can help you stop flooding from torrential rain. You can fix sewage backup problems by hiring a plumber.
Do you need to clean up some water damage? Figuring out the right practices can help you get the best results from this home-repair project. For more information, visit http://www.SERVPROnorthwestphoenixanthem.com/.
When Your (Toilet) Bowl Runneth Over
Some people have that lucky cup that "runneth over." You don't have that cup. No, you are on the opposite end of the luck spectrum, and recently you have had a toilet that "runneth over." Of course, this happens at the most inconvenient time, like when you are leaving for work. You take a swing by the bathroom right before you leave. You hear the unusual sound of the toilet filling (but not draining) and then the other unusual sound of splashing as the water hits the floor. Forget about luck. A little knowledge will help prevent sewer damage in your home. Here are the most likely reasons for your spilling sewage:
1. Partial blockage. You may have a partial blockage that allows water to slowly drain. A plunger is all that is needed for the vast majority of flooded toilet problems. If there is not enough water in the bowl, you can open the tank and slowly lift the flapper to get enough water to cover the plunger.
2. Full blockage. The water is not draining at all. Do not flush the toilet again until you clear the drain. While you are on the phone to request help from a sewage company, your four-year-old runs by. It all makes sense now that you recall the earlier conversation about toys going "bye-bye." The plunger may still be effective for this blockage, but a plumbing auger may help you retrieve a less natural blockage, like a swimming dinosaur, from the pipes.
3. Additional drains are blocked. Sometimes the problem lies somewhere beyond the toilet and represents more serious sewer damage. This is the likely explanation if you have had additional warnings such as odors, backups, bubbling sounds, or other drains being affected.
Everyone in Phoenix, AZ will encounter a blocked toilet at some point in time. Learning about the source of the problem can help you make repairs to prevent extensive sewer damage. Thankfully, specialists are able to effectively clean and restore damage from contaminated water.
Visit http://www.SERVPROnorthwestphoenixanthem.com for more information on water damage.
Steps To Take After Water Damage on Your Commercial Property
A flooded company is not on anyone's wish list, but occasionally it happens. When your commercial property in Phoenix, AZ takes on water damage from a broken pipe or some other type of water loss, it is important to know the next steps to take. Adhere to the following guidelines to keep yourself, your employees and your property as safe as possible.
1. Call the Experts.
The first thing you should do when you have extensive water damage is to call a water restoration company. They are trained to assess the damage and implement the right solution. They can also test the water for contamination. Once the water has been tested, the technicians can construct a plan for dealing with the damage and restoring your property.
2. Wear the Proper Gear.
It is unwise to enter standing water without protection, even if you think its source is clean. Until it's tested, you don't know if the water contains sewage, so it's important not to enter the water without wearing the proper gear:
• Rubber boots
• Water-repellent coveralls
• Waterproof gloves
• Face mask
Only after you have donned the appropriate protection should you retrieve items from your flooded company for restoration.
3. Discard and Disinfect.
With the help of the professionals, you can divide items into those that need to be disposed of and those that can be saved. Your important documents may need to undergo gamma irradiation to kill microbes from the water. Your fabrics may need dry cleaning. Salvageable electronics must be dried thoroughly before being used again. The process of retrieving and assessing each item may be arduous but it is the only way to make sure you save all that you can.
Certified water restoration specialists in Phoenix, AZ have the training necessary to remediate water damage and restore your flooded company to its previous state. Through a series of assessments, extraction, and cleaning, you may be able to salvage many items.
Visit http://www.SERVPROnorthwestphoenixanthem.com for more information on commercial water damage.
The Difference Between Flood Cleanup and Restoration
When flooding hits your Phoenix, AZ property, of course your first instinct is to contact a flood cleanup company. However, before a restoration company can make it out to your premises, you may want to do a little work on mitigation yourself to stave off any additional damage. But what’s the difference between flood mitigation and flood restoration?
Primarily, the difference is that flood mitigation is immediate. This involves the cleanup that you do yourself before a flood cleanup company starts work on your property, though the cleanup company may also do their own mitigation efforts before restoration begins. Flood cleanup and mitigation can include:
• Shutting off electricity
• Shutting off water
• Minimizing sources of flooding
• Hauling out waterlogged materials
• Opening up and airing out property
• Removing any dangerous debris from the premises
Moving on to Restoration
Once cleanup is over, your flood cleanup company may become your flood restoration company – or they may recommend someone new. Restoration is about rebuilding what was damaged, and setting your property to rights; as the name indicates, restoring it.
You may need to replace flooring and drywall, replace furniture, put in new windows, install new HVAC components and systems, and many other actions required to ensure your building is up to speed again. Repainting is often necessary, particularly if water damage has impacted the building. Restoration can take much longer than mitigation.
The Final Difference
In the end, mitigation is about tearing down, and restoration is about building up. You need to eliminate all damaged areas of your property and sometimes start with a clean slate to be able to rebuild and restore. Mitigation, too, is about safety, while restoration is about functionality. You need to go through both stages to ensure you’re back up and running as quickly and as safely as possible.
Visit http://www.SERVPROnorthwestphoenixanthem.com for more information on storm damage.
4 Important Parts of the Fire Cleanup Process
Give SERVPRO a call if you experience fire in your business.
After a commercial fire in Phoenix, AZ you may want to learn more about the fire cleanup process. Fire and smoke damage can do a number on your property. However, a fire restoration professional can help you get your business back to normal. Most professionals do the following:
1. Remove Soot: Smoke can land on your drapes, walls and ceilings. The soot within the smoke can actually cause staining and other soot damage to your building and belongings. Cleaning the soot out of the space is an important part of the cleanup process. If you skip this step, your building may always look dirty.
2. Control Odor: Smoke can also leave an odor clinging to the nooks and crannies of your building. Part of smoke cleaning is clearing out the odor. Thermal foggers, air filtration devices and ozone machines can help completely remove the smell. If you skip this step, the aroma in your building will always remind you of the fire.
3. Repair Structure: Smoke damage isn't the only type of harm you need to clean up. You also have to repair the structural damage caused by the fire itself and the water used to put it out. Structure repair may require your team to tear out some damaged drywall, 4x4s and other building materials. Even the roof may need to get fixed up after a fire. If you skip this step, it may not be safe to go inside the building.
4. Clean Belongings: Finally, your restoration team may be able to help you get your furnishings, equipment and machinery back in working order. Content cleaning is an important part of getting back to normal after a fire. If you skip this step, you may have to spend more money to replace everything that was dirtied or damaged in the flames.
Fire and smoke damage can do a lot to your commercial building. Going through a thorough restoration process done makes it easy for you to get your business up and running again. Visit http://www.SERVPROnorthwestphoenixanthem.com for more information on commercial fire damage.