What To Do If Your Computer Servers Suffer Water or Fire Damage

March 24, 2021 0 By Guest Author

Whenever a type of disaster occurs (flooding, fire, etc.), contamination within your computer servers and other equipment can occur.

Our first instinct is to clean these servers off and see if they will still work or power-up, but this could cause more damage in the long run. With that said, what exactly are you supposed to do if your computer servers experience these kinds of damages?

Immediately After Finding The Damage

The moments after discovering a fire, flooding, etc., can be crucial in your computer servers’ outcome. Keep in mind that some contaminants and damage may be visible, like soot, but others might not be. So the steps you take after discovering this damage will be what determines the future of your computer servers.

The Inspection Process

If your computer servers are involved in a fire, the first thing you will likely notice is dark soot covering them. Soot is made up of mostly carbon, meaning that it may have corrosive or conductive properties depending on the type of fire. 

Not all water damage is visible and may only show corrosion on the server’s internal parts. The drying process can be crucial to saving as much of the hardware as possible and should be thoroughly dried before attempting to do any sort of powering with them. Residue from liquid can be removed using rubbing alcohol and a soft cloth, but reaching out to professionals for water damage may mean the difference between life and extinction for your computer server.

It is important not to turn on equipment that has loss-related contaminants. Powering on equipment that contains conductive material can cause an electrical short circuit. The damage could spread to parts of the server that were originally unscathed during the initial incident.

Even if you see no external damage to your computer’s servers, you should do the following:

  1. Avoid powering on the equipment before a proper inspection by an expert on professional decontamination
  2. Power off the uninterruptible power supply (UPS) that protects the server (if one is in use)
  3. Introduce dehumidifiers to control any unstable environment. Low humidity (below 40%) will help to slow the deterioration rate when servers are exposed to corrosive contaminants

The Decontamination Process

Decontamination can successfully remove a variety of contaminants from computer servers that have suffered water or fire damage. Much like other establishments call upon cleaning professionals who specialize in different expertise, the same applies to professionals in the technology cleaning business. Not all cleaning and decontamination services will work with technology, like computer servers. The first step is to find the company that does and has the equipment and knowledge to handle the situation you present them with appropriately.

When decontamination is done properly, the equipment will be restored and work the way it did before the loss and, in many cases, extending life expectancy. For larger servers, this may be the only time that they have been “down” for any period of time. With dirt, dust, and other debris accumulating over time, this may be the only time a proper cleaning can be done. That is why you see many of the servers who have suffered a loss and get restored have a better life expectancy than they did before.

Do You Have A Disaster Plan In Place?

If you have computer servers, your IT should have already established a backup plan should fire or water damage threaten the livelihood of the servers. If there is not one in place now, it might be a good time to implement one – before any disaster takes place.

Recovering data that has been lost may be almost impossible or completely impossible at times. Having a recovery strategy that has been implemented by your company’s IT department can help make disasters like this less devastating.

These strategies should anticipate one or more losses to the system, including:

  • Environment of the computer room
  • Hardware
  • Connectivity to the service provider
  • Software applications
  • Data and restoration

Many businesses that operate with computer servers of this magnitude cannot afford or tolerate any type of downtime. The recovery strategies are created to help reduce the amount of downtime experienced by these servers and the company as a whole. Do you have a dedicated professional decontamination service that can help you restore confidence in your equipment after a disaster? With the right recovery strategy and decontamination professional, you can have your computer servers back up and running after a fire or water damage in little to no time.

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