Water damage is one of the most common causes of building loss, with a significant percentage of property damage caused by water. Whether it's a burst pipe, broken water heater, or an unexpected flooding event, water can wreak havoc on your commercial space. Whenever an area of the commercial property becomes wet, the problem must be addressed quickly. To prevent further damage and restore the building to its original condition, these tips on water damage restoration for commercial properties will help you get the job done and beyond.
(1) Identify the sources of water entry.
To properly restore a commercial property that has been damaged by water, it is crucial to determine the sources of the water entry. In some cases, this may be relatively simple. For example, the source is clear if a pipe bursts and floods in one building area. It is still important to shut off the water. This will prevent the water from spreading and damaging more of your property. Ensure to check for any active leaks or wet spots throughout the property before doing anything else.
In other cases, however, identifying the sources of water entry can be more difficult. If there is heavy rain for a period, it may be necessary to locate multiple sources. Additionally, if water damage occurs in multiple building areas at once, it will probably take time before all the bases are identified. It is still vital that the roof and building envelope be inspected regularly for any damage or defects. If there is a leak or other wet area within the property, it should be addressed as soon as possible. If you fail to take notice of these areas and they go unattended, you run the risk of severe water damage, mold growth, and structural damage.
Once you've identified all potential sources of water entry for your commercial property (both current and past), you'll know where to start when it comes to restoration efforts.
(2) Invest in proper equipment
The other step to water damage restoration is prevention. You can take time to invest in proper equipment or hire professionals to do the job for you. Choosing the right equipment for your commercial property will help you avoid unnecessary damage. The size of your building will dictate the type of equipment that should be used, but it's best to have a variety on hand just in case something goes wrong. Basic industrial fans are one option, but they're not enough if the area needs air conditioning as well. Portable heaters are great for heating an area during colder months, and dehumidifiers can dry out water-damaged areas.
Another essential piece of equipment is a generator if there is no power available since it helps avoid dangerous situations like electrocution. If you want to avoid dealing with any future issues with turning on the electricity, make sure you have a backup generator installed before anything happens that would cut the power off.
(3) Identify and prioritize the damage.
When water gets into your commercial property, it is good to determine whether the damage affects a specific area of the building or throughout? Does your business have any valuable assets that need immediate protection? Water damage can often cause problems with your electrical system. In some cases, this can lead to short circuits or even fire. If you're unsure about whether this is happening on your property, contact an electrician immediately.
It's also worth considering which items on the premises are most vulnerable to water damage. Are they located near high-risk areas? Are they likely to get wet? You'll want to make sure these items are adequately protected by covering them with plastic sheets and tarps ahead of time. Once you've identified and prioritized the extent of the damage, you'll be able to take proper steps for prevention. This could include installing a new drainage system or repairing broken pipes and damaged walls.
It's better to take a step back and delegate responsibilities. You should also know about what type of repair work may be needed to address the cause of the water damage. For example, if it is due to a leaking pipe, you will need to contact a plumber or contractor who can help fix the problem. The restoration process can be complicated. All employees must be trained on properly caring for the property while it's being restored, including the importance of following necessary safety precautions.
It is recommended that you keep track of everything done to prevent future problems. That way, if something goes wrong again down the road, you have records of what was done previously that might have caused it.
(4) Clean up with a professional.
If you are not qualified to carry out the water damage restoration process, then you should hire a team of professionals for this project. These experts will have the necessary experience and know what is needed to restore your commercial property. Call commercial water damage restoration experts if you are dealing with an emergency.
In many cases, a professional can mitigate the risk of further damage by restoring the property to its original state before the incident occurred. By using professionals, you'll be able to save yourself from potentially costly repairs that could have been avoided if you'd dealt with this problem independently.
Additionally, professionals are more likely to take preventative measures during the clean-up process that could help avoid future problems. So your property should hire them for all aspects of water damage restoration.
(5) Prepare for contingencies.
Prevention is critical, and that's why it's essential to prepare for contingencies. One example of a contingency plan is installing a water alarm system. This will ensure that you'll know if your commercial property becomes wet and be able to take appropriate action as soon as the alarm goes off. Another way to prepare for potential water damage is to invest in a commercial property insurance policy. This policy will cover repairs and restoration costs and the cost of lost income due to the interruption of business operations.
Another essential measure is mold control. Mold is a common concern during water damage restoration. Mold grows after flooding or leaky pipes, and it can cause respiratory problems, allergic reactions, and infections. The first step to minimizing the risk of mold growth is to stop any further water from getting into your property. Then you should dry out the area as much as possible. Ensure the area is ventilated to promote air circulation and discourage mold growth.
You can also use bleach and water for cleaning floors and carpets, but make sure it's mixed with hot water so that the temperature is above 120 degrees Fahrenheit. This will kill any bacteria living on those surfaces before you dry them out with fans or dehumidifiers.
Do not use a vacuum cleaner as this will only push water over areas that have already been dried out. However, if you need to clean up dust or debris on hardwood floors or carpeting, use a broom instead of a vacuum cleaner so that you don't spread more moisture around your home.