Recent Posts

What You Should Know About Sewage Backup Restoration

6/19/2022 (Permalink)

Three air movers placed on the floor Drying equipment in an area that has suffered from water damage.

What You Should Know About Restoring Sewage Backups

Water damage to your commercial property or business in Fort Collins, CO is something that requires immediate attention. Whether it’s due to a leaky pipe or a sewer backup, unattended water can lead to more serious conditions such as structural damage and mold. SERVPRO of Fort Collins offers a comprehensive approach to damage restoration services including sewer cleanup, repairs, and reconstruction needed to restore your workplace back to preloss conditions.

Why Sewer Cleanup Should Be Handled by Professionals
Water damage is usually categorized according to severity:

Category 1: Also known as clean water, this is damage due to a broken pipe or a leak in a water supply line to something like a refrigerator.
Category 2: Sometimes called grey water, this may involve water damage from a flooded toilet (with no feces) or discharge from a washing machine or dishwasher.
Category 3: Water in this category is often referred to as black water. The most severely contaminated, this is damage from sewage backup, floodwaters, seawater, and toilet water containing feces.

Category 3 water is deeply contaminated, containing unsanitary agents that can’t be safely cleaned with household products. An affected property must be remediated which includes removal of affected items, disinfection, specialty cleaning, advanced drying techniques, and prevention of the spread of further damage.

What Else To Consider
SERVPRO of Fort Collins commits to a full restoration of your property to pre-damage conditions. This means that any reconstruction and structural repairs that may become necessary are also included. Insurance companies prefer to work with professional restoration providers like us to ensure that water damage does not worsen by being left unattended.
Protecting your property in Fort Collins, CO means knowing who to call, especially when you need standing water or sewer cleanup. The professional approach helps to ensure that your office or place of business is safe for you, your employees, your business partners, and your customers.

Flood Damage: What To Know Before Cleaning

6/6/2022 (Permalink)

Two air movers placed on the floor A home that experiences flooding needs to be dried out and cleaned up as soon as possible.

Homeowners in Fort Collins, CO, who experience flooding need to act fast. Even what may seem like a small amount of moisture may easily turn into major water damage. While quickly addressing the issue is essential, it’s vital to know the source of the issue before delving into the cleanup process.

Water Loss Categories

Not all water entering a home is equal. There are three categories of water loss that are determined by the water source and potential contaminants.

Clean Water: Considered safe water, it is considered water that is free of toxins. Common sources include a pipe burst or sink overflow.
Grey Water: This type may have chemicals or microbes that need to be properly dealt with. This type of damage is often caused by appliance leaks, such as the dishwasher or washing machine.
Black Water: Often associated with flooding and rising groundwater, it has a plethora of contaminants that require additional levels of safety during cleanup.

Flood Damage Cleanup
Each category of water has its own cleanup requirements. An overflowing sink caught early merely requires extracting the water, drying the area out and sanitizing it. The following two categories are not quite as simple. Depending on the extent of the damage, a grey water issue may be too much to handle and eventually turn into Category 3. The cleanup process often will mean the removal and replacement of drywall and other porous components in the home. In most cases, it’s best to secure the services of a water and mold damage restoration company. It will have certified technicians trained on cleanup protocols as well as the equipment needed to prevent mold growth and salvage affected items.
A home that experiences flooding needs to be dried out and cleaned up as soon as possible. Before delving in, it's important to know the source of the damage and take the necessary safety precautions.

3 Tips on Pet Fire Safety

5/25/2022 (Permalink)

Puppy with an emergency kit In case of a fire remember to include a 72-hour kit for each pet.

Pet Fire Safety

Emergency personnel worldwide agree that a carefully devised fire escape plan is necessary for all homeowners. Not only is it critical to account for your human family members, but preparing a plan for your animals is important as well. Follow these simple steps to keep your household pets safe in the event of a fire emergency.

1. Practice
When practicing your fire escape plan, make sure to include your pets. Pet preparation is essential, so ensure you have the proper precautions in place for your furry friends:

  • Emergency supply kit
  • Collar with name and contact information
  • A place to stay if evacuation is required

Make it a routine to grab your pets when you gather your family and head out the door during a fire drill. Repeating actions help make your escape feel second nature when panic ensues.

2. Pet-Proof Your Home
Family pets are often responsible for igniting house fires. Pet-proofing your house in Fort Collins, CO, ensures both pet safety and fire prevention.
Many animals possess incredibly inquisitive natures. As such, they curiously investigate any open flame, stove knob, or culinary appliance. Avoid a fire emergency or the need for fire damage assessment by pet-proofing your kitchen and smothering any candles or open flames before leaving the house.
If you are the proud owner of a puppy or another young pet, keep it secure in a gated room or crate when you are away. Baby animals' mischief knows no bounds, so ensure both of your safety by keeping them enclosed and away from fire hazards.

3. Cooperate With Firefighters
Make firefighters' jobs uncomplicated by providing them easy access to your pets. Keeping your animals close to an entrance ensures their safe recovery in the event of a fire. Furthermore, place leashes and collars in locations that are simple to find. Entry closets or garages are handy places where emergency workers may look to locate pet paraphernalia.
With practice and preparation, you can avoid the catastrophes created by a housefire. Always include pets in your fire emergency plan to keep your entire household safe and secure.

Proper Techniques for Dealing With Home Water Heaters

5/18/2022 (Permalink)

Closeup of a rusty and leaking water heater A leaking water heater is a disappointing event.

Avoid The Negative Consequences Of a Leaking Water Heater

While your water heater is mostly out of sight and out of mind, it is an appliance you rely on every day. To avoid the negative consequences of a leaking water heater, there are a number of steps you can take. The first is to buy a quality unit and have it installed by a certified contractor. The second is to perform any and all necessary maintenance as per the owner's manual and your contractor. The third is to replace the unit at signs that it is near the end of its lifespan.

How To Handle a Failed Water Heater

If you go into the basement of your home in Fort Collins, CO, and discover a layer of clean water on the floor, your water heater probably failed. The usual route is the bottom rusts out from accumulated sediment, emptying 40 to 70 gallons of water onto the floor. If your basement contains only cement and no personal items, you are in luck and you can probably clean it up yourself and order a new unit.
However, if the leaking water heater saturated carpeting and furniture you will need to take action. Consider following these steps as soon as possible:

  • Turn off the water valve to the unit
  • Call for the services of a local water damage mitigation team
  • Watch out for safety hazards and electrical issues
  • Move personal items and furniture away if possible

How To Cope With a Broken Water Heater

Some household issues call for immediate action. In most cases, you will need to replace your broken unit. The new water heater should give you a good twelve years or more of service. Also, make sure the water cleanup met your expectations and there are no possibilities for secondary damage such as mold growth or lingering odors.
A leaking water heater is a disappointing event. With quick action, you can have the whole thing behind you in a day, with the added benefit of having a new unit installed and ready to go.

How a Fire Restoration Company Can Help Your Business Recover From a Fire

5/11/2022 (Permalink)

Exterior of a building, door boarded with plywood, green truck box parked Board up services in a commercial building in Fort Collins, CO.

How Can a Fire Restoration Company Assist Your Business After a Fire?

After a fire at your business in Fort Collins, CO, you want to resume normal operations as soon as possible. Choose a fire damage restoration service capable of handling the following tasks to ensure your business's full recovery.

Immediate Attention
Disaster can strike at any time, but you should not delay the recovery process. Reputable restoration services ensure their teams of experts arrive at the scene of a commercial fire to offer assistance at any time of day or night.

A Thorough and Formal Property Inspection
Before restoration teams can begin fire, mold, soot and smoke cleanup, they should thoroughly inspect each aspect of your physical property to determine the extent of the damage. After completing this step, you should receive a formal written assessment discussing the findings with a work recommendation.

Assistance With Your Insurance Provider
A fire restoration company can help you document and convey evidence your insurance provider needs to process your claim, including:

  • Photographic evidence 
  • Official fire department reports
  • Witness statements

Mold Mediation
The consequences of a fire at your business extend beyond damage from flames. For example, firefighters at the scene must use hoses that douse the fire with large volumes of water, soaking your business's walls, ceilings, furnishings, electronics, paper records and other property. In addition, a fire damage restoration company should undertake urgent drying measures to prevent mold spores from developing and spreading through your space. 

Property Security
Your business remains vulnerable to theft, vandalism and trespassing until you reoccupy it. First, however, you should look for a restoration company that can erect security fencing to prevent further damage that your insurance provider will not cover.

Cleaning and Restoration
A critical aspect of fire restoration involves soot and smoke cleanup. Experienced restoration crews employ specialized methods and treatments to remove lingering smoke odors and soot particles that attach to porous surfaces and fibers. 
Choose a fire damage restoration service capable of providing the vital assistance you need to continue operating your business in Fort Collins, CO, as soon as possible after a commercial fire.

Storm Damage vs. Flood Damage: What's the Difference?

4/25/2022 (Permalink)

Ceiling tiles damaged by water Storm damage in a Fort Collins commercial building.

What's the Difference Between Storm and Flood Damage?

There are a lot of things you probably don't want to struggle with on your property out of everything that could be on that list, flood and storm damage are likely at the top for most people. However, this begs the question: if they're both caused by water, how do you tell them apart? Here's a quick look at the difference between the two.

Storm Damage

Regardless of where it happens in Fort Collins, CO, damage to property qualifies as storm damage if it was caused by one of the following:

  • Rain
  • Wind
  • Lightning
  • Tornadoes
  • Cyclones
  • Hail
  • Waterspouts
  • Other natural disasters

The physical effects of a storm can usually be seen in the form of damaged shingles, a leaky roof, broken windows, holes in the wall and external house fixtures being torn away from the structure. As long as the damage wasn't caused by the overflow of a body of water during the storm, it should technically qualify as storm damage. It's important to note that earthquakes aren't typically covered in this category.

Flood Damage

Unlike a storm, damage from flooding is typically regarded as any normally dry land being covered by water that has escaped from a river, creek, lake or other body of water. The damage is still considered flood damage whether or not it was caused naturally or by an external force even if the flood came from a canal, dam or reservoir after being modified, it still qualifies in the same category. If the damage came from a flood that was caused by inclement weather, it should still count as flooding so long as the storm itself isn't what damaged the building.

Whether you're dealing with floods or storm damage in Fort Collins, CO, it's important to know the difference between the two. Homeowner's insurance can be very particular about what is covered under a specific category, so speak with your agent if you're unsure what you're protected against.

How To Use SERVPRO To Help with Insurance Claims

4/14/2022 (Permalink)

Man moping floor. Man cleaning floor after water damage SERVPRO franchise is uniquely qualified to help you keep on top of the work that is happening throughout the entire process.

How SERVPRO Can Assist With Insurance Claims

When you call a claim services agent about your business in Fort Collins, CO, after a disaster, you want a quick response. You also want to be sure that everything is being done correctly. You're still running a business, so keeping track of the project shouldn't be your job, but whose job is it? Your local SERVPRO franchise is uniquely qualified to help you keep on top of the work that is happening throughout the entire process.

1. Prompt Response in an Emergency

When you think of an emergency response, one of the most crucial aspects is the speed at which you get help. How supported you feel often shapes the entirety of the restoration experience. It's important that the person on the other end of the phone is confident, competent, and considerate, and that whoever comes to your property is prepared and professional. A SERVPRO team has a rigorous documentation process to adhere to that tracks your project from the first phone call.

2. Thorough Claims Inventory Service

The emergency remediation team keeps a record of every single thing that has been damaged and turns it into a detailed, itemized document with photos and descriptions. They can advise you as to whether something can be restored rather than replaced. You get copies of this document, as well as of everything else, throughout the remediation process, and they are also shared directly with your claim services representative.

3. Complete Pretesting Process

A complete pretesting process is undertaken to determine the extent of the damage to your business and to provide an accurate restoration quote before the work begins. This is an important step because it helps both you, the client, and your claim services agent know that you're receiving high-quality work at a fair industry price.
Emergency response doesn't have to be daunting if you choose to work with a company that understands the importance of organization and communication as its professionals help you get back to work.

Preparing a Commercial Building for a Thunderstorm

4/6/2022 (Permalink)

Ceiling collapsed from commercial, debris on the floor Commercial storm cleanup in Fort Collins, CO.

Getting Ready for a Thunderstorm in a Commercial Building

Despite its name, a thunderstorm does not only include thunder. It may also feature:

  • Wind
  • Heavy rain
  • Lightning
  • Hail

Each of these weather events comes with its own hazards. A heavy rain storm, for instance, can cause flash flooding in Fort Collins, CO. High winds, meanwhile, can damage buildings or knock out power. By following the below steps, you can mitigate the harm caused by severe storms.

Know Your Risk

As the bad weather approaches, you may hear meteorologists issue a severe thunderstorm warning or watch for your area. You should know the difference between these two terms. A watch is declared when severe storms are possible. A warning, however, is issued when radar or individuals have detected the bad weather nearby.

Prepare in Advance

If a major rain storm is heading to your area, you should get your property ready. Bring inside any exterior items that are not attached to the ground. This will prevent those things from flying away in heavy winds.
You should also trim any trees or shrubbery growing near the building. Remove any damaged branches so they do not fall onto the structure during the storm.
An emergency kit is a valuable resource for your tenants. It should include necessary supplies and the contact information for storm damage restoration experts.

Keep Everyone Safe

Finally, make sure all of your tenants know what to do when the storm arrives. Have them close their windows and doors. They should stay away from the windows, as well. Remind them not to use electrical equipment or their plumbing system, either.
A rain storm can be harmful to your property, especially if the severe weather includes hail or heavy winds. Before the storm arrives, remove loose outdoor items from your landscape and trim any trees that are too close to the buildings. You should also prepare an emergency kit for each of your tenants. As the storm approaches, stay up-to-date on the latest alerts so you know when the threat has passed.

How To Prevent Mold Damage in Your Commercial Building

3/23/2022 (Permalink)

Moisture meter Use a moisture meter to monitor the humidity within the property.

Prevent Mold Damage in Your Commercial Building

Whether you own a large commercial building or a small store, you do not want mold to spread unabated throughout your Fort Collins, CO, property. Mold growth can occur anywhere, including

  • Above ceiling tiles
  • Inside walls
  • Around pipes

If an infestation occurs, you may have to temporarily close your building while experts perform mold cleanup and remediation. This shutdown could cost you a lot of money. Luckily, there are some simple ways to avoid extensive mold problems. Since the fungus thrives in wet areas, most mold prevention tips involve limiting water damage.

Addressing Water Issues

Start by surveying your property for signs of leaks. Plug those leaks immediately before they cause further harm.
You may also want to waterproof parts of your property. This could be expensive, but a mold infestation would be even more costly.
Pay special attention to sections of your building that are prone to flooding. If a flood does occur, have the water removed within a day or two.

Reducing Moisture

Mold does not only spread following a major water damage. Even everyday moisture can encourage the growth of this harmful fungus. If your property uses stoves or dryers that create moisture, make sure those appliances are vented properly. You may also want to run an exhaust fan or open a window when these items are in use.
Indoor humidity is another common cause of mold growth. The humidity level inside your building should be no more than 60 percent. Use a moisture meter to monitor the humidity within the property.
Condensation is often a sign of excess humidity. Any drops of moisture on pipes or windows should thus be dried immediately.
To prevent mold in your building, you should reduce the excess moisture throughout your property. You should also clean up any water damage immediately. While the above tips will not completely eradicate the mold inside your building, they should prevent the fungus from becoming a major issue.

How To Create a Fire Evacuation Plan for Your Business

3/17/2022 (Permalink)

People escape to fire exit door Make sure that your employees are aware of all the exits in the building.

Fire Escape Plan for Your Business

In the event of a fire, having a reliable plan in place that everyone in your business is a part of is crucial. Be sure to communicate the plan explicitly and have all of your employees practice it to ensure that everyone knows what to do in case of a real fire. To help you get started, here are some essential components of an effective fire escape plan for your business in Fort Collins, CO.

Assign Responsibilities

To establish order in your business in the event of a fire, there needs to be a clear list of responsibilities that must be taken care of. Some of the fundamental roles that you should assign to your employees include:

  • Chief supervisor
  • Assistant supervisor
  • Floor monitor
  • Route guide

The supervisors can help alert the other employees and call the fire department, and the floor monitor and route guide can take on the job of making sure everyone is out of the building. Giving these roles to the employees you believe are the best fit can keep things running as smoothly as possible.

Establish Routes

A critical requirement of a good fire escape plan is mapping out clearly defined evacuation routes throughout your building. Make sure that your employees are aware of all the exits in the building so they can turn to the closest one in the event of a fire. It is also a good idea to designate an area outdoors where everyone can meet after evacuating, as this can help confirm that everyone is out of the building.

Inspect Fire Equipment

Your emergency escape plan will be futile if your fire equipment isn’t functioning properly. Check all of the emergency tools in your building and confirm that they are up-to-date. Be sure to cover everything, including fire alarms, fire extinguishers, emergency lighting and fire doors. Having effective equipment can alert everyone promptly and help to facilitate your evacuation plan.
A fire escape plan is important, but a real incident can leave you with devastating damage. A fire restoration professional can help your business be up and running again “Like it never even happened.”