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Flood Insurance: Do I Need It?

11/12/2020 (Permalink)

Flood insurance form on a table with a book. Flood Insurance: Do I Need It?

Protect Yourself And Livelihood With Flood Insurance Coverage

Business owners in East-West Vincent, PA, face many risks in the commercial marketplace: capitalization, economic downturns, competition and even operational threats, like extreme weather, can all lead to financial failure. Some weather events — damaging winds and lightning, for example — generally are covered by commercial insurance. A standard business owner's policy will provide for heavy rain, cascading gutters and melting snow that leak (from above) into your commercial space. However, flooding (even storm-generated flooding) requires flood insurance.
Here's a rundown of need-to-know facts about this niche sector of business insurance:

Coverage: Insurance underwrites losses from flood damage to your building and property. As defined, a "flood" is water that affects at least two acres or two properties.
Exemptions: Insurance doesn't cover the exterior of your property. Septic systems, landscaping and business vehicles are exempt. Further, it doesn't apply to losses resulting from business interruption (closure) due to water damage.
Location: Geographical location is the key factor that determines your business' risk for flood damage. Check online flood maps or contact your local government to find out if you are in a flood zone.
Stipulation: You're required to purchase insurance if your business is located in a high-risk flood zone and you hold a mortgage from a federally-regulated or insured lender.
Vendor: You can obtain a policy through the federal government's National Flood Insurance Program. However, you must purchase it through a professional insurance agent; you can't buy a policy directly from the government.
Amount: An insurance policy guarantees up to $500,000 in coverage for your building and $500,000 for its contents. You can buy additional coverage to repair and restore your damaged property that includes business interruption provisions.
Post-flood property damage: Mold damage (resulting from a flood) is covered; however, each claim is evaluated individually.

Whether floodwaters come from raging rivers or overflowing levees, torrential rains, a ruptured dam or storm surge, they can be devastating for affected businesses. Savvy business owners know their flood risk and recognize the importance of protecting themselves and their livelihood with flood insurance coverage.

Why You Should Use a Certified Restoration Company After Your Next Flood

11/5/2020 (Permalink)

General manager holding a certificate for water damage restoration IICRC certified

Once you discover a broken pipe in your Devault, PA, building, you need to act quickly. You cannot just sit around and hope the water goes away on its own. That’s because the longer the water remains on the premises, the more damage it will cause.
You may be tempted to perform the pipe burst cleanup on your own to save money. However, this could just make the problem worse. The remediation process is complicated, particularly if the pipe in question is connected to a sewer line. That is why you need to have employees from a sewer cleanup company do the repairs. These remediation professionals should have the training and certification they need to do the job properly.

Restoration Technician Standards

Look for a cleanup business that was certified by the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration. The IICRC develops restoration standards used around the world. The standards are based on certain principles, which are regularly updated following developments in:

  • Testing procedures
  • Technology
  • Processing

To achieve IICRC certification, companies must pass a specific audit. Once the business is certified, its professionals cannot perform a pipe burst cleanup unless they meet IICRC standards.

Benefits of Certified Technicians
There are many reasons to use certified professionals for your restoration project. They should have the most advanced equipment, which will speed up the drying process. They will also know the best ways to prevent mold from taking over the property.
Cleanup experts will additionally know how to handle a potentially pressurized situation. You may feel stressed out thinking about all the water damage in your building. The pros can calmly answer your questions and reassure you that things will soon go back to normal. Ideally, the professionals will communicate with you openly throughout the remediation.
Call certified pipe burst cleanup experts the next time your building floods. You can trust that these professionals will follow the necessary standards and perform the restoration safely.

4 Traits to Look for in a Fire Restoration Company

11/4/2020 (Permalink)

Three employees in front of a SERVPRO box truck getting their picture taken SERVPRO crew in Kenilworth, PA

Keep These Key Points In Mind

Has your commercial building in Kenilworth, PA, been damaged by fire or smoke? In the event of a commercial fire, it's important to hire a competent service to restore your building to working order. There are a few traits that you should look for in a fire damage restoration company. As the owner, you should be informed about the most effective and efficient practices that only the best services employ.

1. Prompt Response
Time is of the essence after a damaging fire, and it's important that the company of your choice can arrive promptly. It's best if the assessment and repairs get started as soon as possible, as to minimize any further damages.

2. Detailed Assessment
The fire damage restoration company of your choosing should conduct a complete and comprehensive assessment of your building. This is important so any damages—minute or not—can be identified and addressed as soon as possible. Seemingly small damages can quickly progress into larger issues if not caught early and handled properly.

3. Thorough Repairs
After a meticulous inspection of your building, repairs should start promptly. Aside from being carried out in a timely manner, the reparations should also be comprehensive. A professional should be sure to triple-check his or her work, and it's essential that even the smallest of damages be addressed with haste—lest you risk more serious damages.

4. Efficient Cleanup
Along with a fire comes smoke damage and lingering fumes. A proper company—whether it be conducting smoke cleanup or dealing with scorched walls—should always be sure to clear any debris and clear any and all surfaces of smoke, fumes and soot. Additionally, any water damage caused by your building's fire suppression system will be dealt with. Pumps will be brought in to dispose of standing water, and any furniture will be dried as well.
When employing a company for fire damage restoration, it's important to keep these key points in mind.

Tips To Recover From Storm Damage

10/21/2020 (Permalink)

worker removing carpet damaged by storm water Carpet damaged in Ludwigs Corner, PA

Tips That Can Help You Restore Your Home After Storm Damage

When dealing with damage after a storm, it is difficult to know what steps to take. Every circumstance is different, but there are some storm tips that can help you restore your home in Ludwigs Corner, PA, as quickly as possible.

1. Stay Safe
Once the storm has passed, you will want to inspect your home for damage. Before you begin, follow some safety tips and never inspect after dark.

If you spot extensive structural damage, don't stay in the house. Call a storm damage restoration service as soon as possible to safely assess the damage.
When a gas odor is detected, immediately go outside and call the gas company.
Look out for exposed nails and broken glass.
Don't walk in standing water.
Stay away from downed power lines.

2. Check for Damage
Once you have determined that it's safe to remain in the house, some storm tips will make the job easier. Take pictures of the storm damage as you spot it. This will help the insurance adjuster when they arrive.
Roof damage is common after strong winds. Look for holes in the roof, as well as missing or broken shingles. Check the gutters and downspouts and remove any debris.
Doors and windows are also susceptible to wind damage. Look for cracks and broken panes in the windows, and check the doors for damaged frames. Board up broken windows before help arrives to mitigate the damage. Check the siding and bricks on the exterior of your house. Also, inspect outdoor air conditioners for damage.

3. Call Your Insurance Agent
Check with your insurance agent to determine the coverage under your policy. Your provider will also help guide you in the steps needed to make a claim.
Recovering from a weather event is devastating. If you follow some sound storm tips, you'll be able to get your house back in order much quicker.

Which Air Filtration Systems Best Remove Mold?

10/7/2020 (Permalink)

Air filter for HVAC system - filtration concept One of your best options is a purifier that includes a HEPA filter

Air filtration is a great way to keep harmful impurities away from your family. Using an air purifier has other benefits as well, but you need to know which one is best capable of removing noxious mold spores. Read on to find out which types are most effective at completing the task.

Benefits of Air Purification

Besides removing floating fungal invaders, air purifiers generate atmospheres that are:

  • Clean
  • Odorless
  • Dustless
  • Free From Pet Dander

Note that HVAC attachments reduce the burden placed upon your device, subsequently extending its life.
Although most purifiers can achieve the above objectives with ease, not all are as effective at eliminating mold spores. Making the right choice of air filtration is critical if you wish to keep your house free from a situation requiring the services of a mold renovation specialist.

Styles of Air Purification
Assuming your primary goal is to remove aerial fungi, one of your best options is a purifier that includes a HEPA filter. Able to remove 99.97% of particles 0.3 microns or larger, machines equipped as such can be expected to vastly improve your home’s breathability. Be certain to regularly change its filter, though, as failure to do so can result in captured specks escaping.
Your other superior choice is a Photo Electrochemical Oxidizer. Using light activation to destroy air particles, these contraptions are capable of actually eradicating airborne offenders instead of merely trapping them.
Many other systems exist, but none are better than either of the above selections. Photocatalytic oxidizers, for instance, can expunge some organic molecules, but they are highly inefficient. Ozone generators flood your residence with this peculiar-smelling form of oxygen on purpose, a bad idea for those with certain sensitivities. Carbon filter purifiers, which trap gasses, are totally incapable of removing fungus spores.
Keep your residence in North - East Coventry, PA, clear of mold growth through the use of effective air filtration, making sure that whichever model you pick is capable of handling the job.

Reasons for Toilet Leaks and How to Respond

10/7/2020 (Permalink)

Leakage of water from a toilet due to blockage of the pipe A leaking toilet is a serious obstacle, but dealing with one should not be an oversized headache

Should you develop a leaking toilet, there are a number of possible reasons. Identify the source of your heartache to pinpoint what repair is needed to get your commode properly flushing once more.

Toilet Leak Causes

Here are three common reasons water may begin flowing improperly from your commode.

1. A Crack
Older toilets are prone to developing fissures. Failure to tackle this malady quickly could allow for greater problems to emerge.

2. A Worn Flapper
Leakage may arise when this component suffers from extended use and begins blocking water.

3. A Loose Base Seal
When water surrounds your toilet, it may be because the parts keeping it securely attached have become worn.
Another possibility is that you do not have a leaking toilet at all. Plumbing that has become rusted, for instance, can fracture, resulting in water pooling around your toilet's base. Another scenario is mere condensation triggered by too much humidity. Consult an expert if you are unable to definitively determine the issue.

Toilet Leak Repairs
In cases where water emerges from beneath the toilet, you may be able to alleviate the matter by tightening your system’s grounding bolts. Take extra care when doing so, however, that you apply the appropriate amount of pressure, as too much can provoke additional damage. Caulking remains a hotly debated issue, so use your best judgment regarding this procedure.
Should the above fail to cure your bathroom leak, complete removal and replacement of your commode may become necessary. This is a complex task best handled by a commercial water damage expert. Choose one that will arrive at your home in Parker Ford, PA, at the earliest possible moment. The longer you take to address the trouble, the more complex the concern can become.
A leaking toilet is a serious obstacle, but dealing with one should not be an oversized headache. Once you identify your leak’s origin, hire a qualified professional to correct the situation.

Understanding the Span of Commercial Property Insurance Coverage

10/2/2020 (Permalink)

green truck next to commercial property SERVPRO of North East Chester County

Businesses are susceptible to the ravages of countless forces of nature and humanity throughout their lifetimes. At any moment, properties are at risk of damage. Commercial insurance is therefore a necessary precaution for business owners. What exactly does property insurance cover though? Read on to find out.

What Physical Aspects Does Commercial Property Insurance Cover?

Commercial property insurance covers a business's physical capital/assets. This includes buildings, the contents of buildings and assets outside of buildings. Both office and manufacturing equipment like computers and heavy machinery are generally covered, as are inventory, necessary documents, outer features like fences and any other physical item you are willing to pay to insure. The cost of repairs, hiring a professional restoration company in Phonexville, PA if necessary and the cost of replacement in the case that broken property is irreparable all come under the umbrella of commercial property policies.

What Kind of Damage/Loss Does Commercial Property Insurance Cover?

Commercial insurance also protects against a wide variety of damage types and loss. Coverage usually includes the following:

Fire damage (including smoke and soot damage)
Loss from theft or vandalism
Explosions
Storm damage
Burst pipes

Some kinds of damage are not normally included in a commercial property insurance package. Earthquake and flood coverage, for example, are usually optional.

What Amount Does Commercial Property Insurance Cover?

So how much damage will commercial property insurance pay to repair? The amount varies, depending on how much you are willing to pay, though there is often a cap on how much the insurance company will pay out. Just like the price you pay varies based on the extent of your business assets, so too does the amount your policy covers; it will not always pay out every cent required after an incident.

Commercial insurance is a justified expense for any business. The protection afforded in the case of natural or human-made catastrophes makes the price well worth it.

How to Maintain a Commercial Roof

9/24/2020 (Permalink)

Architectural detail of metal roofing on commercial construction We can help restore your commercial roof after Storm Damage in Phoenixville, PA

Commercial Roof Maintenance

Commercial roofs in Phoenixville, PA are subject to wind damage that can threaten structural integrity. That's why you need to be on top of any issues as soon as they show up. Besides, waiting out can cost you a fortune in roof repairs or even worse.
The early signs of roof damage include:

  • Water stains in the walls or ceiling
  • Mold or mildew
  • Wood damage

Regular Inspections

The secret to avoiding a costly roof rebuild is having inspections done at least twice a year. During these visits, the professional should look for signs of cracking, peeled edges or flashing and decide if there is a need for repair or not. However, do not be tempted to DIY this inspection as you might cause more damage while walking on the roof. It is better to leave it to the pros.

Quick Repairs

After the inspection, it is wise to do any recommended repairs immediately to avoid further damage. These small repairs cost a lot less compared to serious roof damage, and they usually don't affect operations in any way. Also, it would be nice to trim any overlaying branches while the renovation guys are still on site.

Keep it Clean

Dirt and debris can clog gutters and the storm drain, resulting in roof damage. Water will have nowhere else to go, and that creates unimaginable pressure on your poor roof. As a result, you can experience a nasty leak that would put you at risk of mold and structural damage. So, it is better to have all leaves, snow, and debris cleaned off your roof regularly.

A good commercial roof can last up to 20 years with proper care and maintenance. All you need to do is find a reliable roofing company that can clean, inspects, and repairs your roof regularly. They should also be able to respond fast in the event of an emergency.

Can Lightning Cause a House Fire?

9/24/2020 (Permalink)

Thunderbolt over the house with dark stormy sky on the background and moon shining through the cloud A lightning fire is a common occurrence in nature but can also occur to homes and other buildings

Most homeowners experience a number of severe storms each year. Although most people do not usually think about it, a lightning fire can and does occasionally occur. During 2007-2011, lightning-caused over $450 million in property damage each year. Knowing how lightning travels can help you understand your risk of a fire.

What Happens to the House?

All homes contain paths that could be used as the lightning strike travels to different parts of the residence. When a house sustains a direct impact, many types of damage can occur:

  • Breaks and cracks in concrete, bricks, and stone
  • Shattered windows
  • Damaged foundations
  • Electrical surges that damage appliances and electronics
  • Fire ignition

Once a house is struck, the energy can continue to surge through a path until it reaches the ground. As the energy encounters flammable materials, it can start a house fire. Attics, roofs, and fallen trees are common areas for fires to start.

How Can the Home Be Protected?
Ensure that your house is fitted with a lightning rod and that the rod is the highest point of your dwelling. If the rod is struck, it should allow the electricity to disperse safely through your home and avoid a lightning fire. Keeping your roof in good repair and choosing flame-resistant shingles can help. If tall branches are growing near, consider having them trimmed so that they are not hanging over your roof. Protect your appliances and electronics by using a surge protector or unplugging them during a storm. If your home is struck by lightning, call your emergency fire department to check for fires in areas that may not be obvious.
A lightning fire is a common occurrence in nature but can also occur to homes and other buildings. If you have experienced a fire in Birchrunville, PA, call a professional fire restoration service to help return your home to its pre-fire condition.

6 Places To Check for Mold Growth in a Commercial Facility

9/1/2020 (Permalink)

Hand showing mold growth on ceiling Mold growth in a Phoenixville, PA commercial building

Places To Check For Mold Growth

The ominous musty odor of mold often alerts many commercial property owners to the growth of the fungus. While you can immediately call an indoor environmental specialist in Phoenixville, PA, out to your property to perform a mold test, you can always perform a thorough inspection of areas common to fungal development.

1. Plumbing
Look around exposed plumbing throughout your facility. Search for damp areas or signs of leaks. The plumbing problem need not be extensive; a few consistent drips are often enough to lead to mold growth. Unfortunately, not all plumbing issues occur on exposed pipes, which means you may need a professional inspection to rule it out.

2. Foundation
Take a walk around the outside of the building and in the basement. Look for signs of damage, like cracks in the building materials, anywhere that water may enter the property.

3. Windows
Before contacting the indoor environmental specialist, check around the windows, making sure that the seals are intact. Many facility owners neglect window and door seals, which can lead to water intrusion and mold development.

4. Vents
Kitchen and bathroom vents can trap all sorts of debris that become food to mold, and when in a humid space, development can occur rapidly. Also, the seals around roof vents, when old, can provide another access point for water.

5. Storage Units
Many warehouse facilities have large storage units that do not move. Unfortunately, these units, especially those against walls, can hide water damage and mold. During your inspection, pull away boxes and materials to view the wall behind the shelves.

6. Appliances
Pull appliances out to ensure there are no leaks. Also, clean frequently used devices, like microwaves, to eliminate a potential food source for mold.
While a thorough inspection is not a replacement for the tests performed by an indoor environmental specialist, it can make you aware of an actual problem. The odor alone is not an indicator for mold; finding visual proof of growth, and then testing is the only definitive approach.