Commercial Storm vs. Flood Damage
Flood damage in Edmond, OK
Understand The Difference Between Storm and Flood Damage
Storms can lead to flooding, but flood damage is not the same as storm damage. Although this sounds like a riddle, it is important to understand the difference between the two when you are insuring your Edmond, OK, commercial property.
Storms can cause all sorts of damage to a property. The following are some common ways that a storm can damage a business building:
Damage from the above sources are likely covered under your commercial property insurance policy. However, damage caused by rain is a bit trickier. If the rain entered the building after damage caused by the storm, such as through a roof leak caused by strong winds, the water damage is likely classified as storm damage and covered under the same policy. However, in other situations, water damage from heavy rains may only be covered by a separate flood policy.
For insurance purposes, flooding is defined as the inundation of two or more acres or properties that are normally dry. The inundation can be caused by heavy rains, mudflow, or overflow from rivers, lakes, and other bodies of water. If the water damage is classified as flooding, it will only be covered if you have a flood policy.
There is another important difference between water damage from a storm and from a flood. While the water from a storm usually comes as rainwater from the sky, flood water has accumulated on the ground and become contaminated with mud, sewage, etc. This is important to keep in mind during the restoration process. Items damaged by floodwater should be thoroughly sanitized. If they cannot be fully disinfected, they should be thrown away.
It is important to discuss your business’s needs with an insurance agent and carefully read through all policies to ensure your business is properly covered in the event of flood damage. In addition to an insurance policy, it is important to select a certified restoration company to help get your property back to normal quickly and safely after a flood or storm.
3 Differences Between Storm and Flood Damage
Differences Between Storm and Flood Damage
During a storm in Oklahoma City, OK, there may be damage done to your building. While you may think that all storm damage is the same, this is not always the case. There is one very important distinction that should be made. This is that floods are considered to be a separate issue from other types of water damage that may occur during a storm. The following are a few differences between the two.
1. The Source of the Water
The first difference between storm and flood damage is the source of the water that enters your building. During a storm, leaks can occur, allowing water inside. Even if the amount is significant, this is not considered to be a flood. Flood waters are those that rise up from the ground and enter the building from below. When trying to determine the type of water damage you have, this is probably the easiest way.
2. The Category of Water
Rain is classified as category 1 water, which means that it is clean and will not cause any significant harm to you. While flood waters may have risen because of the rain, they are classified differently. Once the rainwater begins to rise and mix with other sources, such as sewer water, it becomes category 3. This water is highly contaminated and should be avoided. Flood damage will require thorough sanitization.
3. Insurance Coverage
In most cases, water damage is included in commercial insurance policies. However, most flood damage is not and, if it is, coverage will usually be limited. If there are often floods in the area, it may be a good idea to invest in a separate flood policy to make sure that your property is covered during an emergency.
If your property has been damaged by flooding or anything else during a storm, you will likely need repairs. Contact a cleanup and restoration company to get your building back to its previous condition as soon as possible.
What Is Included in Commercial Insurance Fire Damage Policies?
Here's What Is Usually Covered By Most Insurance Policies
Fire damage is one of the most frequent insurance claims in the United States. In 2017 alone, almost 500,000 structure fires were reported, causing around $10.7 billion in damages. Not only do fires cause damage with the heat and combustion, but smoke gets everywhere and fire-fighting substances, such as water and foam, cause tremendous damage. Here’s what is usually covered by most insurance policies in Edmond, OK, although it should be noted that each company has different terms.
Depending on the policy and property ownership, your policy may cover repairs and replacements to the structure, including
- Supporting structure
- Stucco, siding and concrete
- Plumbing and heating systems
- Interior walls, framing and painting
Ask your insurance adjuster if these are covered by your policy. Even if you rent your location, some policies will cover these types of damage, often under general liability, in what’s called “damage to premises rented.” Note that your coverage should include replacing items, such as carpet and roofing tiles, if a perfect match isn’t made between the replacement items and older ones, under the “uniform and consistent appearance” clause.
Fire Damage Coverage
Most items are covered by the majority of commercial property insurance policies. However, there are exceptions, and terms of individual policies can vary widely. Some policies cover actual cash value (the original value of the item minus accumulated depreciation), while others cover replacement costs. Replacement policies cost more but can help avoid massive out-of-pocket expenses.
Your policy may cover fees charged for fire-fighting services and smoke damage. Some policies include coverage for loss of business income during the disaster and the recovery time. Mold damage may be included, but this is now often being specifically excluded, so check to make sure you have a mold endorsement.
Fire damage to your business in Edmond, OK, doesn’t have to be the end. If you are careful and read your insurance policy, most forms of fire mitigation can be covered, not only providing peace of mind but possibly avoiding a bankruptcy and closing of your business altogether.
Timing Is Important When It Comes to Mold
Mold growth in Oklahoma City, OK
The presence of black mold in your Oklahoma City, OK, commercial building is a threat to your business, so calling for professional mold removal is crucial. Bringing your establishment back to normal quickly sounds appealing, but is not always realistic. The process may take longer than expected, but the benefits are worth the investment. Learn more about timely action, removal length, and how to reduce the wait.
Quick Action Against Mold
Once you find evidence of mold inside your property, you will need to call emergency mold specialists immediately to combat the problem. The longer you leave mold alone, the more it thrives and grows, increasing the damage. A fast response stops its progress and saves you money on cleaning and repairs. Any type of water damage can also lead to mold growth due to the high humidity. Bring in repair professionals quickly to fix the damage and prevent mold.
The length of mold removal is not the same in every case. The following factors can impact how long it takes to eliminate mold in the affected area:
- Multi-step approach (inspection, isolation, removal, clean-up)
- Location of mold
- Material where mold grows
- Quantity of mold present
These variables affect the techniques and equipment the specialists use. Generally, the process takes between three to seven days to complete. Even though waiting that long seems frustrating, it is the most effective way to eliminate growth.
Preventing a Long Process
While mold spores are everywhere and are impossible to entirely eradicate, there are steps you can take to reduce the damage and make the removal shorter. If you see mold or water damage, call the appropriate professionals immediately so they can resolve the issue before it escalates. If there is only water damage, dry the area with mops, sponges, and fans. If mold is already present, avoid touching it since this can spread spores.
Mold removal can make it difficult for your business to open soon. However, starting this process fast minimizes the damage, making the procedure more time-efficient.
Can Flooded Electronics Be Salvaged?
Water damage to electronics in Oklahoma City, OK
Water damage occurring from flooding in Oklahoma City, OK, can leave you feeling helpless. Loss of property can occur, and though insurance should cover a great deal of your loss, some things simply aren't replaceable. This can be true of electronics that may not have been documented in your policy. Most people would probably assume flooded electronics aren't salvageable, but this isn't necessarily true.
Safely Securing Your Electronic Devices
The first thing you'll want to do is remove your devices from the flooded area so that further electronic damage is avoided, but this must be done with caution. For areas of your home that have experienced severe damage, don't try to secure your items on your own. In these types of scenarios the tough jobs are best left to a professional restoration company.
Some things you'll have to consider if you are retrieving the devices on your own:
- Never remove items that are still connected to a power source when there is standing water.
- Make sure the power to the home is disconnected before removing flooded electronics.
- Avoid handling devices that are hot to the touch or are releasing smoke or steam.
- To avoid further damage, remove the battery and disassemble the device to allow it to dry.
Restoring Your Electronic Device
In order to clean your device, it will need to be completely disassembled, down to all cables, connectors and shields. The logic board has tiny components which will have a harder time drying, so to aid the process it will need to be completely submerged in isopropyl alcohol.
Scrub gently to clean the logic board of any deposits that have been left behind. Once, it's clean, aid in the drying process by using a cool blower, such as a hair dryer. Once dry, you can reassemble your device.
The damage caused to flooded electronics doesn't have to mean these devices are no longer usable. With a little elbow grease and patience, they can be revived and save you potentially thousands of dollars in seeking replacements.
How to Keep Your Employees Safe During Mold Removal
If you find mold in your Oklahoma City, OK, building, you should have it removed as soon as possible. In most cases, you will likely not want to close your business entirely during the mold removal process as this can result in lost profits. It is important, however, to keep the safety of your employees in mind. The following are a few ways that you can help prevent them from having to work in a contaminated environment.
1. Use Containment Methods During Removal
While mold removal is being done, the workers will likely set up containment areas to keep the mold from spreading throughout the building. This will help keep the areas where employees are still working clean.
2. Provide Protective Items
If the area has been contained but you are still concerned about the safety of your employees, you may feel better if you provide them with some protective gear. Face masks will help prevent them from breathing in any contaminated air. Investing in an air purifier with a HEPA filter is an option as well. These remove black mold spores and other impurities from the air, ensuring the area will be safe to work in.
3. Have Employees Work From Home
In cases of extreme mold growth, you may not feel comfortable having your employees come into work. If this is the case, you can always have them work from home. Depending on the severity of the contamination, removal can take more than a week, so closing the business during the process is not ideal. While there may be some limitations when work is done this way, it might be better than your other options.
When you need to have mold removal done, it is best to hire a professional mold remediation specialist. They will have the necessary training and experience to clean the area without creating a more hazardous environment for your employees. They will get the job done as quickly as possible, so you can get back to work sooner.
Mitigate Water Damage During a Flood Claim
Storm damage in Edmond, OK
Mitigate Water Damage During a Flood Claim
Floods can be devastating, which is why it is vital to have flood insurance if your Edmond, OK, home is in an area in which they frequently happen. When one happens, homeowners need to make the necessary calls to submit a claim and get the cleanup process started. Unfortunately, if flooding isn’t just in your home, it could mean that adjusters have been inundated with claims. While waiting for the inspection and to get the water damage and restoration process going, preventing further problems also needs to be considered.
Flood damage doesn’t just mean water-logged belongings. It could potentially mean that harmful black water has entered the home or open your home up to other potential issues. If it is safe to enter the home, it is important to mitigate issues that you are able to.
Remove Water – If the flood insurance provider gives the go-ahead, removing excess water and beginning the dry-out process is the best way to minimize damage.
Mold Mitigation – A flood often presents the ideal environment for mold to grow. Removing saturated items within 48 hours can prevent mold damage from happening.
Secure the Home – If any windows were broken or the storm caused roof damage, it is important to put temporary coverings up to prevent damage from spreading or new damage from happening.
From the onset of the process and anything you do before the adjuster arrives, document everything. Take pictures or video of every aspect of the home from flooded carpets to ruined pictures. Before making any temporary repairs, take pictures of the before and after to ensure the insurance company has clear documentation of the damage.
While flood insurance is vital for many homeowners, there can be a delay in getting the restoration process going. Doing what you can and ensuring the damage is documented can minimize the damage and help the claim go more smoothly.
How and Where To Expect Mold Growth
Mold grows in unvented bathrooms, around leaky pipes, and underneath sinks with damaged seals
How To Prevent Mold Spreading In Your Home
If you’re worried about spreading mold in your Oklahoma City, OK, home then you may also have questions about this invader. Understanding the problem may help you take appropriate action if mold is found in your residence. Here’s what you may want to know.
1. How Mold Grows
Mold usually requires areas of high moisture such as a space near water or with high humidity. It prefers areas with dim to no light and feeds upon organic materials such as wood, paper, cloth, drywall, or plant matter. Because it is a fungus it creates colonies that may appear slimy or fuzzy. Mold may also range in color including, yellow, brown, white, grey, green, and black mold.
2. Where Mold Grows
A local mold remediation professional will usually start by checking out the areas of your home most vulnerable to spreading mold. This will include areas with high moisture such as bathrooms and under the kitchen sink, as well as spaces where condensation may occur such as a basement or crawlspace. Areas such as windows, doors, and attics may be next on the list as these spaces can form leaks. The professional-looking over your home can perform several tests to know for certain if mold is present in the suspected area.
3. Why Mold Spreads
One part of mold remediation is making sure that the mold has not spread to other areas of the home. Because mold is a fungi it can produce spores. These spores can then become airborne or attach to another object or being allowing them to be carried into new spaces. Remediation professionals can perform several tests to locate other affected areas if the mold has been spreading, and act accordingly.
If you want to prevent spreading mold in your home, it’s important to understand where mold is and how it grows. This will allow you to take the proper steps if mold is found. Remember, a remediation professional can help.
3 Aspects of Fire Damage
Commercial fire damage in Edmond, OK
Three Major Aspects of Fire Damage
Fire can damage the structure and contents of a commercial building. When estimating restoration costs, it is important to account for all of the effects of fire. Learn about three major aspects of fire damage to factor into a risk assessment, safety plan, and insurance claim for a commercial property in Edmond, OK.
1. Structural Components
One of the worst consequences of fire is damage that undermines a structure. This degree of damage necessitates extensive repairs. A commercial property owner should thoroughly document damage for an insurance adjuster before starting mitigation. Timely cleanup may limit the severity of primary or secondary damage.
2. Building Materials
Building materials that contribute toward comfort or have cosmetic value may also suffer damage. Fire may burn through or char drywall and destroy insulation. Have the affected area cleaned and replace these materials. Depending on the measures taken to extinguish a fire, standing water can compound fire damage. Pumping out water may be one of the earliest stages of fire mitigation and cleanup.
The contents of a commercial building that do not get incinerated may still get damaged by proximity to fire. This can take the form of heat damage or exposure to soot and smoke. Contents that have become charred have undergone chemical changes and will require replacement. It is important to thoroughly all clean furniture and fixtures to eliminate smoke odor. Electronics may need to undergo content cleaning or data recovery.
Fire damage can affect every aspect of a commercial building in Edmond, OK, from structural components to building materials and contents. The severity of a blaze will determine whether it is necessary to completely rebuild a structure, an affected area or just clean up smoke damage and do cosmetic repairs. Restoration experts can help property owners assess the damage and provide an estimate to support a commercial property insurance claim.
What Is Involved in the Fire Cleanup Process?
A fire in your home in Oklahoma City, OK can be devastating, and you are probably likely to want to start the process of cleaning your home. However, there are several steps that are helpful to take when cleaning smoke damage and other forms of damage from a fire in your home.
1. Taking Inventory
After a fire has taken place in your home, one of the first steps in the cleanup process is to take inventory of what damage has occurred. The items in your home, as well as the structure of the home itself, is examined by restoration professionals. Once you have an idea of what is damaged in your home, it is likely that you will have an estimate of how long the cleanup and restoration will take.
Once an assessment of your home has been made, the process of smoke cleaning and removing soot damage and smoke damage can begin. Many of your personal belongings, including clothes, photos and electronics can often be restored. Generally, a restoration company can help to determine the best methods to clean your belongings. If there is not a great amount of structural damage that has occurred, the process of cleaning may not take a great amount of time.
3. Removing Residual Odors
In addition to damaging items in your home, smoke can leave a lingering scent. While masking the odor with sprays or other products may be seen as a short-term solution, the smoke smell is likely to return. Methods to help remove the smell of smoke in your home can include replacing air filters, thoroughly sanitizing carpets, walls and ceilings and replacing the drywall in your home. After items in your home are clean and odors have been removed, reconstruction can begin if necessary.
Understanding the necessary steps to remove of smoke damage and other forms of fire damage can help you feel more at ease as the cleanup process begins in your home. If your home has already been damaged by a fire, it can be helpful to work with fire damage restoration experts.