Flooding and your Business's Electronics
If you're like most business owners, your office electronics are the lifeblood of your company. In the event that a disaster strikes, all your records could be impaired and permanently lost, including invaluable company records, customer information, and even communication.
In the aftermath of a flood, it's important to know what to do to mitigate the effects of water damage on your computer systems and other electronics. If you act quickly enough, you may be able to save more information and get your business back on its feet faster. Find out what you should do after an emergency and when to call on the professionals after your equipment or technology has been damaged by high humidity, directly hit, or completely submerged in water with these helpful tips from SERVPRO.
DAMAGE TYPE: HIGH HUMIDITY
Humidity spikes can occur in a room with standing water or other significant water damage. Surprisingly, delicate electronics like computers, printers, work phones, fax machines and other devices can still be damaged even without direct contact to the water source. That's because in humid conditions, dust can turn into sludge and cling to wiring and circuit boards. This is even more likely if the flooding or high humidity was caused by an office fire that produced smoke damage to electronics.
What to do: In all instances of high humidity water damage, professional electronic restoration services are recommended to bring your equipment back to normal conditions. A professional cleaning provides a better chance that your costly electronics and devices can be fully restored to preloss condition.
DAMAGE TYPE: DIRECT HIT
Electronics can sustain a direct hit from running or splashing water without being completely submerged. This scenario can occur from accidental spills, water overflow, leaks, floods and virtually any other water-related incident. When direct hits to your electronics happen, try to remove them from the water source as soon as possible to prevent permanent damage.
What to do: Often, computer water damage from a direct hit looks worse from the outside than it actually is on the inside. Commercial restoration and cleaning, including an adequate drying period, can remove contaminants left by the water and restore the equipment to proper functioning, usually at least long enough to recover crucial data. However, there is always a risk of circuit board corrosion. Over time, you may need to replace either essential components, or the entire device.
DAMAGE TYPE: SUBMERSION
Submersion occurs when the electronic equipment has actually been completely covered in standing water – and possibly even muddy silt and sediment – for a period of hours or days. This type of damage can happen in serious disasters where people are unable to get to the office for long periods of time, or during weekends or holiday breaks when a pipe may burst and nobody is notified until the next business day.
What to do: Unfortunately, electronics that have been submerged are not usually good candidates for electronic restoration services. This is because most submersion incidents cause the computers to short out and damage the internal circuits beyond repair. While you could potentially replace damaged parts and have the equipment professionally cleaned, it may be prohibitively expensive unless your items were specially designed or extremely costly. In submersion cases, we recommend completely replacing your electronics and notifying your insurance about each damaged item.
Remember, if your business has sustained flood or water damage, it is never safe to just turn on your electronics afterward to test them. You run the risk of electrical shock, and even further damage to your equipment. That's why you should call on us. Our water damage restoration services work quickly with the innovative tools and expertise necessary to fix your equipment. Contact the professionals at SERVPRO to learn how we can get your business back up and running fast.