What Are Construction Permits?
Imagine you live in a neighborhood where every house looks the same, and every block matches the one that came before. The neighborhood is organized into perfect symmetry, then one day the annoying guy down the street builds a hot pink addition to the front side of his property. The roof is a sickening green-yellow, and the edges protrude out onto the sidewalk. The window trimmings are a gaudy royal blue, and the front door to this weird forward addition is a bright fire engine red.
I bet you think that scenario is excessive and unrealistic, and that’s because it is! The reason you’ve never seen/heard of something like this is because of construction permits. Construction permits are official approvals for projects/remodels to homes and commercial buildings which are issued by the local government. A specific example would be adding some concrete to your driveway. The design and land usage must be approved by the association if you have one, and the local building department.
Keep in mind, a construction permit is not needed for simple repairs around the house. You don’t need to submit an application to patch a wall, or fix a leaky faucet. The construction permit is used for major mechanical or structural changes to a house, like space additions or work on gas lines. The whole point of the construction permit is to make sure that the annoying guy down the street doesn’t ruin the aesthetic of the neighborhood with his hot pink front addition. It’s also for the crazy lady next door that thinks she can reconfigure all her electrical wires by herself, even though she’s never done anything even remotely close to it before. The permits are used to keep everyone safe, and to allow the neighborhood to look its best.
What We Look For When Inspecting Fire Damage
"When your office is burning down but you know you have SERVPRO to save you."
At SERVPRO, fire and water damage remediation is our specialty. So let’s talk about fire! Accidents happen and when they do we are here to clean it up. With over 50 years of experience in the disaster recovery business, we know how to make your property “Like it never even happened.” When confronting fire damage, there are a wide range on things to take account for in the inspection process. Here are some of the things we look for:
Soot and Ash
A fire produces heavy amounts of smoke from the burning of different materials that your home is made up of. The remnants of the smoke are soot and ash that can be left on the walls, ceiling, furniture, and floors. It visibly stains the areas, making your property look dirtied with fire damage! But, no need to worry, this can be fixed. Here at SERVPRO, we use special vacuums to suck up the ash and soot, but sometimes even after cleaning the smell remains. In these cases, the affected areas must be replaced to eliminate the odor in your property.
These are the most obvious places that need to be replaced. Once the supporting beams, walls, and ceiling of your house is touched by fire, the structural integrity of it is greatly compromised. You can see which areas of your house are affected because everything is burned visibly black. These areas are removed and reconstructed to keep your property safe and looking “Like it never even happened.” At SERVPRO, we have the certifications to remediate your damaged home AND reconstruct it. You can choose us or a separate construction company to proceed with the final rebuild of your property. Check out some of our construction before and after photos here.
A fire can directly damage the electrical outlets and wiring by melting and burning them, or indirectly through heat and smoke. They can also be damaged by water from firefighting efforts. We check for all of these things when inspecting your property after fire damage. It is usually light fixtures, outlets, and exposed electronics that must be completely replaced following a fire. But, we have seen cases where a property’s internal wiring is damaged and must be completely repaired. Our highly trained technicians have the certifications and experience to restore every range of damage that a fire has done to your property.
These are some of the key things we look for after fire damage, and we share so you know if your home is in need of damage restoration. If you are not sure, call our 24 hour emergency line to schedule an inspection, or even for any questions you may have about our services.
What We Look For When Inspecting Water Damage
Photo example of dry rot and paint damage
When water damage strikes your home, the effects can be seen in many different ways throughout your property. There are so many things that go into building a stable structure for humans to live/work safely in. When water gets in sensitive places, it can be a threat to the safety of the occupants and to the owners pocket! But, there is no need to worry, here at SERVPRO we inspect each water damage case thoroughly and take immediate action to prevent further damages to save your dollar. Here are some things we look for when inspecting water damage:
When moisture is absorbed into the walls, it can be noticed by the way the paint behaves. In water damage cases, the paint will usually bubble, or peel off. This is how you know unwanted moisture is in the walls that needs to be dried. To find the content of moisture in the affected areas, we use a moisture meter that measures the percent moisture in a given substance/area. To dry the moisture, we use air movers and dehumidifiers that helps the water evaporate quicker.
When water enters your property through flood or a heavy storm, it seeps under the floor and lifts the boards, indicating water damage. If the water under the floor is not dried, it will make your property prone to microbial growth and end up costing you even more. Mold grows in places that are wet and dark, so any part of your property that has those conditions after water damage need to be inspected and dried. To dry the moisture under the floor we use the same air movers and dehumidifiers that help the water evaporate at a quicker pace.
Dry rot happens in the case of long-term water damage. Sometimes a pipe can be leaking for weeks before it is noticed, and the long-term effects of the damage have already happened that must be dealt with. Dry rot is when wetted wood starts to decay over time. For your property to have structural integrity, the wood must be in good condition, but water exposed to the beams for a long period of time lead to dry rot and a weak foundation. Dry Rot cannot be repaired, it must be replaced to ensure your property is in safe condition.
Mold is also in the case of long-term water damage. Mold growth is prone to wet and dark places. The pipes running through your property to transport water are in places like these, and when they leak it is very likely that mold will be the result of this damage. Mold cannot be repaired, it must be removed and remediated to ensure a safe environment on your property.
These are a few of the most common damages that can affect your home in the case of water damage. For every job we inspect these things to get a thorough understating of your property’s water damage situation so we can create a plan to make your home/commercial property “Like it never even happened!”
What SERVPRO Can Do For Your Commercial Business
Although here at SERVPRO we specialize in fire and water damage remediation, we also provide a number of additional services that can be of use to your commercial business. Many things happen day to day at the office and your building may need some servicing that you didn’t expect. If so, that’s okay! We are here to educate and guide you through the process of building restoration and repair. Here’s what we can do for you:
When running a commercial business, the employee and/or customer traffic can cause natural wear and tear to the office. Whether it be dirtied carpets or dusty air ducts, we are able to help make your office like its new again. We have state of the art technology to perform deep carpet and upholstery cleaning. Check out our before and after photos to see some of the work we’ve done. We also are able to inspect and clean your commercial business’ HVAC unit to make sure no dust, pollen, dirt, debris, or odors are contaminating the airways. These things are important to keep your business a clean and healthy place for both customers and employees.
Your commercial business’ office building may be in need of some repairs, and SERVPRO is here to assist you with those! We can handle plumbing, roofing, fencing, tile floor repair, drywall removal, electrical repairs, and even more that you can view by clicking the link here. If any unplanned event may happen at your business leaving an unsafe mess, count on SERVPRO to handle it for you with ease and professionalism.
And obviously, we can provide your business with any natural disaster damage restoration. For example, if your commercial property suffers from a fire, there will also be water damage due to firefighting efforts. It takes special training and technology to properly dry and repair the affected areas to make them new again. We are pros at this! To see some of our work check out our before and after photos.
Now that you know the range of services we can provide your commercial property, call our 24 hour emergency service line (310) 320-2112 for any additional questions, or to schedule an inspection.
Types of Fires and Extinguishers
You’d think that fire would only come in one flavor, but apparently that’s not the case. There are different classes of fires which describe what is being burned and how to extinguish it. With different types of fire, it’s important to be able to know how to prevent them, which types of fire are which and what you need to do to extinguish them safely. Here are the different types of fires and what extinguishers to use with each:
Class A fires consist of wood, paper, cloth, rubber and plastics. Water, foam, dry chemical, clean agent, and water mist fire extinguishers are the way to go for these fires. Each extinguisher has a different property to it that extinguishes the fire.
Class B fires are flammable liquids like gas, petroleum grease, tar, oil, alcohol, butane and many more. Extinguishers for these fires are carbon dioxide, dry chemical, and clean agent.
Class C fires entail electrical equipment that has set on fire like motors, computers, appliances, and transformers. These fires can be extinguished by carbon dioxide, dry chemical, clean agent, and water mist extinguishers.
Class D is a more rare form of fire that is caused by combustible metals like titanium, magnesium, or potassium. These fires can only be extinguished by dry powder extinguishers.
Class K fires are very common as they are caused by cooking oiled and greases like vegetable and animal fats. These fires can be extinguished with wet chemical extinguishers. Do not try to extinguish a grease fire with water because it will not work.
What to do When a Storm Causes Damage to Your Property
In Southern California, the weather can be petty unpredictable. One year we are in a drought, and the next rain is falling all winter. It is important to be prepared for these types of conditions, because homes are not indestructible structures. A storm can cause serious damage to your property, and it’s best to be aware on what to do when confronted with storm damage.
Scope out the House for Hidden Damages
Water from heavy rain can seep into the nooks and crannies of your home making mold growth more likely. After a storm, look in all of the often overlooked places of your home to check for flooding and water build up. It’s important to catch this soon to prevent mold growth. If you are not sure if your home is damaged from a storm, call a disaster recovery service like SERVPRO to inspect your home for any storm damage.
Steer Clear of Affected Areas
After inspection, if your home has suffered from damaged, to keep everyone safe, keep a good proximity from the affected areas. If your property has mold damage, the mold can produce allergens that can be dangerous for humans to be around. And if water has accumulated in your home, it can affect the structural integrity of your property. Keep yourself and the occupiers of your property safe!
Call a Disaster Recovery Service
Once you are sure your property has suffered from storm damage, call a disaster recover service like SERVPRO to restore your home back to new. Here at SERVPRO, we have a 24-hour emergency service line for your property’s restoration needs any time of day. We have over 50 years of experience in disaster recovery, so you can trust us to make your home “Like it never even happened.”
The History of SERVPRO Industries
SERVPRO industries have been serving the US since 1967. The company started out in Sacramento, California as a painting business by Ted and Doris Isaacson. Their experience with damage restoration led them to create the business into a franchisor for damage clean up and restoration. They sold their first franchise in 1969, and SERVPRO began to grow rapidly, becoming one of the leading disaster restoration services by 1979.
In 1988, SERVPRO moved its headquarters to Gallatin, Tennessee “to be within 600 miles of 50 percent of the U.S. population.” At this time, SERVPRO consisted of 647 franchises, continuing its exponential path of growth. By 2000, the 1,000th franchise was sold and SERVPRO remained a top competitor in damage restoration.
SERVPRO has taken part in the restoration following the largest natural disasters in America. SERVPRO was contracted by the government after Hurricane Katrina in 2005, Hurricane Ike in 2008, the Tennessee floods in 2010, and Hurricane Sandy in 2012.
Now, SERVPRO has more than 1,800 franchises across the United States and Canada. We have over 50 years of experience in disaster recovery, so you know you can trust us to get the job done correctly. We have come a long way, and are more than happy to be serving the United States and Canada with impeccable restoration work!
How Water Damage and Fire Damage Can Simultaneously Affect Your Property
A fire can spark in your home for various reasons. The top causes of home fires are from kitchen appliances, heaters, smoking, candles, and faulty wiring. Some of these are uncontrollable circumstances, so its best to be prepared for such a situation.
When a fire does spark in your home, immediately call the fire department. They will come and extinguish the fire using water and sometimes foam. This method pulls the oxygen away from the fire in turn extinguishing it. During this process, water gets into your home and can cause additional damages.
Fire can damage your home in many ways. It can burn the walls of your home, damage the structural integrity of your home, and the smoke and sot can travel through the vents making the air dangerous to breathe.
Water can damage your home by leaving moisture left in places meant to be dry, making your property more prone to mold growth. Water can also damage the structural integrity of your property, making it dangerous to be in close proximity to.
In the event of a fire, damages can be vicious. Here at SERVPRO, we have the experience necessary to make your property look “Like it never even happened.” We understand the stress that comes with damage restoration… no need to worry, SERVPRO will be there in a hurry!
The Damage a Storm can do to Your Property
In Southern California a harsh storm is not common, but with the weather cycles of Earth changing, heavy rain floods and mud slides are becoming more common in this region. A storm can be of great danger to your property. Here are the types of damage a storm can cause on your property:
Mold from Flooding
After your house is flooded, the water seeps into the floors and walls of your property and it stays there. Over time, the affected areas will grow mold and the air surrounding it can be dangerous to breathe. It is important to be aware of the types of mold that can form on your property and what to do when confronted with it. To learn more read our blogs on Water Damage and Mold.
In a storm with high winds from 50-90mph, the shingles on your roof can fall off and expose your property, leaving little protection. When this happens leaks and mold growths are more likely to happen.
In special lightning storms, the strikes can cause fires. It is most common for this to happen in forests, but the fires often spread to commercial areas and can affect your property. Read our blogs on fire damage to learn more about what to do in the event of a fire. Lightning can also damage
What to do if Your Commercial Property is Flooded
It is possible that your commercial property can be affected by flooding. Accidents and unexpected events happen all the time, so it’s best to be prepared if these situations ever occur. Here’s what to do in the face of a flooded property:
Evacuate Affected Areas
The water flooding into your property can contain bacteria or chemicals dangerous to be around. Evacuate the affected areas and put clear signs or borders around the site to make sure it is untouched to prevent further dangers and damage.
Call a Disaster Recovery Service
When confronted with a flooded property, the damages must be handled by professionals. Flooding can cause indoor mold growths and other damages that need special training to be remediated. At SERVPRO we have a 24 hour emergency service line to assist you with your property’s remediation needs.
To remodel your property, it is necessary for you to contact your insurance provider. They will tell you the estimated coverage provided to remediate the damages done to your property. Our technicians here at SERVPRO try our best to provide you with accurate and cos efficient estimates to make the process affordable and stress free.