Thursday, December 28, 2017

Don't Let Pipes Freeze - and Steps to Take If They Do

What's worse than a major home maintenance disaster? Try several major home maintenance disasters at once. When a house's water pipes freeze, the situation is not as simple as calling a plumber. A 1/8-inch crack in a pipe can spew up to 250 gallons of water a day, causing flooding, serious structural damage, and the immediate potential for mold.
Frozen water pipes are a problem in both cold and warmer climates, affecting a quarter-million families each winter, and it can happen in homes with both plastic and copper pipes. It's all too common, especially considering this damage is largely preventable.
In addition to taking the usual preventive precautions, here are a few steps you can take to keep your pipes from turning frigid nights into inconvenient, and expensive ordeals.

Before winter arrives

The three central causes of frozen pipes are quick drops in temperature, poor insulation, and thermostats set too low. You can prepare your home during the warmer months.
  • Insulate pipes in your home's crawl spaces and attic, even if you live in a climate where freezing is uncommon. Exposed pipes are most susceptible to freezing. Remember, the more insulation you use, the better protected your pipes will be.
  • Heat tape or thermostatically controlled heat cables can be used to wrap pipes. Be sure to use products approved by an independent testing organization, such as Underwriters Laboratories Inc., and only for the use intended (exterior or interior). Closely follow all manufacturers' installation and operation instructions.
  • Seal leaks that allow cold air inside near where pipes are located. Look for air leaks around electrical wiring, dryer vents, and pipes, and use caulk or insulation to keep the cold out. With severe cold, even a tiny opening can let in enough cold air to cause a pipe to freeze.
  • Before winter hits, disconnect garden hoses and, if possible, use an indoor valve to shut off and drain water from pipes leading to outside faucets. This reduces the chance of freezing in the short span of pipe just inside the house.

When the mercury plummets

Even if you've taken the right preventative steps, extreme weather conditions can still harm your pipes. Here are a few more steps you can take:
  • A trickle of hot and cold water might be all it takes to keep your pipes from freezing. Let warm water drip overnight, preferably from a faucet on an outside wall.
  • Keep your thermostat set at the same temperature during both day and night. You might be in the habit of turning down the heat when you're asleep, but further drops in the temperature—more common overnight—could catch you off guard and freeze your pipes.
  • Open cabinet doors to allow heat to get to un-insulated pipes under sinks and appliances near exterior walls.

Before you skip town

Travelling in the winter months might be good for the soul, but don't forget to think about your pipes before you leave. What can you do?
  • Set the thermostat in your house no lower than 55°F (12°C).
  • Ask a friend or neighbor to check your house daily to make sure it's warm enough to prevent freezing.
  • Shut off and drain the water system. Be aware that if you have a fire protection sprinkler system in your house, it may be deactivated when you shut off the water.

If your pipes do freeze

What if your pipes still freeze, despite your best preventive measures? First step: Don't panic. Just because they're frozen doesn't mean they've already burst. Here's what you can do:
  • If you turn on your faucets and nothing comes out, leave the faucets turned on and call a plumber.
  • Do not use electrical appliances in areas of standing water. You could be electrocuted.
  • Never try to thaw a pipe with a torch or other open flame because it could cause a fire hazard. Water damage is preferable to burning down your house!
  • You may be able to thaw a frozen pipe using a hair dryer. Start by warming the pipe as close to the faucet as possible, working toward the coldest section of pipe.
  • If your water pipes have already burst, turn off the water at the main shutoff valve in the house; leave the water faucets turned on. Make sure everyone in your family knows where the water shutoff valve is and how to open and close it.

Monday, December 18, 2017

How 5 Technology Companies in NYC Are Incorporating Design Into Their Workspaces

In recent years, marrying design with technology has become a common practice among architects and interior designers as they design work spaces for companies across numerous industries. 

So it should come as no surprise that when some of the top names in the design industry were tapped to create work spaces for a handful of corporations in the technology sector in New York City, they would look to technology for inspiration. From live-streaming monitors that nod to one company’s television roots to a major dot.com with a mission to achieve zero-waste status by tracking its progress via open-sourced technology, businesses today are realizing the benefits that come when you blend design with technology. Here are five tech workplaces in NYC leading the charge.

Project: Compass.com

Firm: Vocon
Neighborhood: Union Square
Designers Statement with Lance Amato: The goal of Vocon’s design was to create an innovative and dynamic environment while presenting a sophisticated narrative of how to feel the comfort of home at your workplace. We designed the front end of the office with the same spacial relationship found in an open-concept loft and a lounge seating area similar to that of a living room that is connected to a pantry. This visual connection allows occupants that are in both spaces to connect with each other as well as with passersby on Court Street. The 21st-century office has transformed from a primary workspace to a meeting place. With this in mind, we focused on providing different types of gathering and meeting spaces to support formal and informal encounters. While employees still have their own singular desk, these spaces are minimal and purely functional. Common spaces are equipped with comforts such as residential furniture paired with AV capabilities to support collaboration and teamwork.
For full article, click here

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

LEED trails off as go-to standard for green buildings


In 1994, the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) introduced the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design certification process for real estate. At the time, the notion of green buildings was relatively new and there was a vibe within the commercial property industry that LEED, as the energy conservation and sustainability program is called, would have a significant impact on design and construction.

“I worked on some of the first buildings seeking LEED in Manhattan about 20 years ago,” recalled Leon Levine, principal consultant with ECOThink Group in Greenwich. “There was a lot of excitement at the time.”
Today, however, Levine said, that excitement over LEED has abated, especially in this regional market. “Certification is not as popular as it used to be,” he said.
Only 12 commercial properties in Connecticut received LEED certification this year. The peak year for Connecticut certifications was 2013, when 48 commercial properties received LEED designations. In 2012, when the state introduced corporate tax credits to encourage LEED certification for new and renovated buildings, developers sought LEED certification for 26 properties. Since the U.S. Green Building Council began tracking state markets in 2004, a total of 279 commercial properties in Connecticut have received LEED certification.
When judging the projects seeking LEED certification, the USGBC assigns points pegged to certain design and construction criteria. Based on the number of points achieved, a project can earn either certified, silver, gold or platinum ratings. LEED also covers residential properties, neighborhood development, interior design only and the operations and maintenance of existing buildings undergoing little or no renovation.
Marsha Matto, an interior designer and professor of interior design at the University of Bridgeport, said LEED points are not exclusively based on a property’s energy consumption or use of sustainable materials. “Let’s say a building is a half-mile from the train station,” she said. “You can get points if you have access to a train station. If there is a bike rack outside, that also gets points.”
“It’s not difficult to achieve, but it does cost money,” Matto said of the various fees charged for LEED registration and the Green Building Council’s design and construction review process. “In comparison, EnergyStar certification costs nothing.”
Run by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and U.S. Department of Energy, Energy Star is one of about a half-dozen rival ratings systems that have challenged LEED’s role as the standard in green building review. “There is so much out there that the saturation may be turning people away,” said James Albis, executive director of the Connecticut Green Building Council.
Problems in measuring LEED’s financial benefits have also contributed to its decline in popularity. “This was supposed to help people realize energy efficiencies because the building is tighter and using less energy,” said Levine. “But modeling doesn’t realistically predict what happens in the real world and predictions for X-amount of savings from energy conservation are often never realized.”
Among developers of multifamily projects in Fairfield County, the Jonathan Rose Cos. received LEED Gold certification — the Green Building Council’s second-highest rating — for its two completed Metro Green Residential buildings in Stamford and is seeking a similar rating with its third building in the apartment complex.
“It is important that we have third-party verification of what we’ve done,” said Caroline E. Vary, managing director of asset management for Jonathan Rose in Stamford. “It’s not just about saying that we’re green, it’s about being green. We even publish a green guide for residents to encourage them for best environmental practices.”
In Greenwich, owners of 330 Railroad Ave., a former electrical utility building built in 1928, are seeking LEED Silver certification, said Richard Granoff, the building’s co-owner.
“The investment in a high-performance building envelope, uber-efficient HVAC equipment and rooftop solar panels had a relatively short payback period,” said Granoff, whose firm, R.S. Granoff Architects PC, is headquartered in the building. “The occupants enjoy cleaner air, abundant natural light and even a living green wall, and all of the building products were either sourced locally or are recycled. Many firms, especially larger ones, seek out space in LEED-certified buildings due to corporate policy.”
Some developers emulate LEED’s example of going green without going through the process and added expense of the U.S. Green Building Council program.
For full story click here

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Meet Gerard McGarrity - Guardian's In House Security Expert!

Meet Gerard McGarrity! Gerard manages the operations for Guardian Security Services, Inc. inclusive of providing leadership and training for all of Guardian's security personnel.



Gerard is a retired United States Navy veteran and a former member of the Navy Maritime Expeditionary Warfare Group which dealt with Anti‐terrorism force protection. His extensive training in the field of security is what makes Gerard a vital part of Guardian's security solution!

Who Needs a Security Guard?

Our job isn’t to appraise what you produce, how you produce it, or whom you sell to. We believe every business is entitled to function safely and without threat of damages or loss. At our core, we are intensely interested in keeping you and your business secure. A few of our typical clients include:
  • Hotels
  • Retail Stores
  • 24-hour businesses
  • Hospitals
  • Office Buildings
  • Residential Communities
  • Airports
Virtually any place of business can benefit from our security protection and we can tailor that to the proper safety that your business needs. Full customization of security guard schedules, presentation (plainclothes or uniform?), and equipment means that this security feature caters to the image you have cultivated for your business, and makes this a necessity for the safety of your assets.

What Can Security Guards Do?

We understand that each of our client’s needs are unique. That is why our security guards are trained to provide a variety of services. Some of the things we offer include:

MONITORING

You may want to establish a security guard service that does more than patrol. You may need someone to review surveillance or even walk employees or customers to their vehicles after hours. A security guard can help defend a number of aspects of your business that doesn’t involve simply walking around the perimeter (although, that can certainly be an option as well!). It boils down to asking yourself what are your security needs? We have years of experience in creating the ideal protection package by asking the questions no one else thinks to ask. We find the weak links in your armor and, instead of attempting to hide them, actually find ways to fix them.

PREVENTION

Hiring a security company as part of your overall safety plan will go a long way in preventing criminals from targeting you. Unfortunately, businesses are a target for vandalism and theft. A secure presence will certainly discourage criminal activity and help your business keep a safe reputation. Guardian recognizes the line between creating a crime-free zone (like a prison cell) and a place wherein crime is significantly deterred all the while business is still encouraged. Your business is not a jail cell, it shouldn’t feel or behave like one. There should be a balance between safety and claustrophobia. Our experience in protecting businesses means we know where that line is for your business.

MANAGING CRIME

The security guards from Guardian are top of the line. We train our professionals to handle crimes that range from theft, violence, vandalism—and everything in between. We want our clients to feel confident when they call on our services; they get the most competent people in the industry. We understand that quality service means constantly evolving with the changes that occur in society. That is why our personnel is required to continue training and implement those new security techniques in their positions. Our constant and consistent training does not stop at physical reactions to physical crimes. Our personnel are trained in everything from reading surveillance and interpreting body language and micro expressions to categorizing anonymous threats and responding to the newest trends of criminal activity in the age of the Internet. Just as you and your business change and evolve with time, so too do our security guards — by remaining adaptable at all times.

PEACE OF MIND

It has been proven that the presence of a security guard actually offers people a sense of safety. People simply feel better when they know that a trained professional is keeping an eye out. As a business owner, it lets you know that someone else also has your best interest in mind. When you succeed, we know that we have succeeded as well. It’s a win-win from both sides of the spectrum.

Friday, December 8, 2017

Guardian's Concierge Service!

Our concierge services go far beyond those offered by more traditional concierge companies. Our reputation for going that extra mile, combined with our years of experience mean our clients can relax, knowing even the tiniest details are being taken care of.
We have worked hard to ensure that we have the very best concierge services. Every one of our highly trained employees receives comprehensive training in aiding and meeting all the needs of your staff and your residents alike.
Training involves all aspects of front desk duties, such as: properly greeting tenant and guests in a cheerful welcoming manner, assisting with all reasonable requests, becoming an integral part of the property, answering questions, serving as a general presence and visible deterrent to infractions; detecting suspicious activities reporting all incidents, accidents or medical emergencies to the building property manager.
In addition, our concierge team wear distinctive uniforms bearing our logo and name, varying from venue to venue but always looking highly presentable, clean and visible for people who may be looking for them. The next time you find yourself in need of the finest concierge services, contact Guardian. We are one of the top concierge companies for a reason.
Request a quote! Click Here

Thursday, December 7, 2017

Commercial Pest Control

Take control of your business with a commercial pest control contract!
Guardian Exterminating Services offers various services to businesses to help protect the health and the environment for you, your employees and your customers.

Insects, rodents and other pests pose numerous risks and damage to your facilities, if left untreated. At Guardian, we believe preventative measures should be undertaken to ensure that a small problem doesn’t become an infestation, with our full complete sanitation audits and site surveys, our recommendations will help eliminate the food, water and harborage that a pest needs.
If pests are already present, one of our ESA qualified technicians will perform an inspection of the property, identify the pest and any conditions conductive to the species. A plan of action will be created and discussed with you, consider non-chemical improvements, and perform treatment based on safety and effectiveness. Follow up inspections and continued monitoring are performed to ensure the problem has been resolved.
Businesses Served:

  • Business Offices
  • Retail
  • Restaurants & Hotels
  • Institutional Settings
  • Healthcare
  • Industrial manufacturing
  • Warehouses
  • Transportation Hubs
When is the best time to catch those pests? Well, I don’t know… as Guardian Exterminating Services works 24/7/365 providing Green Shield certified pest control solutions to both businesses and residences to protect the health and the environment for you, your employees, your customers and your guests! Request a quote! https://lnkd.in/dysThy9

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Industries We Serve

Since 1918 we have helped develop and maintain safe, secure and green facilities in a broad range of industries across the Northeast inclusive of:
Our expertise enables our team(s) to step into a variety of facility types, understand the unique operational, safety and regulatory framework and optimize operational efficiency, lower costs and reduce your risk, from the onset.
This is The Guardian Difference.

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Joe Knows Engineering & Operations!

Meet Joe Large! A Guardian employee since 2010, Joe brings 25+ years of expertise in Real Estate Development, Management, Facility Management, Building System Administration and Practical Mechanical Engineering.

During his tenure with Guardian, Joe has continuously honed his facility services skills, by turning his focus from an end user perspective to that of a service provider. Joe is an industry thought leader and has earned his reputation for delivering on his promises. Isn't it time to get Joe into your facility to help you optimize your processes and say hello? https://lnkd.in/ddNjKcc

About Guardian Engineering

Guardian offers a variety of building maintenance and repair services to provide you with trained and experienced personnel to implement services and achieve cost savings. Guardian’s senior management holds over 100+ years’ experience in the design, operations and maintenance of various types of facilities, inclusive of transportation hubs, data centers, corporate headquarters and public buildings.

Our approach includes developing a tailored plan that addresses the specific needs of your facilities, which assures the achievement of your objectives and generates immediate and cumulative cost savings.

We’ve gained a reputation as a premier service provider in the industry, and have developed a solid reputation for creating innovative building management and energy performance solutions. This includes retrofits and replacements of older, less efficient systems with newer, high efficiency systems.

Additionally, our on site management and engineering staff have the experience to operate and maintain all types of mechanical systems, including Package units, Chiller/Boiler Plants and Absorbers.

Friday, December 1, 2017

Meet Charles LoBosco Of Guardian Security Services

Meet Charles LoBosco! Charles joined Guardian in 2013 and provides senior level leadership in developing cost effective security service programs throughout Connecticut, New Jersey and New York. Charles, an industry veteran with +29 years’ experience has a wealth of knowledge, leadership and expertise. 

In addition to providing senior level leadership, Charles oversees Guardian’s Security Services division, inclusive of pricing, staffing, financial analysis and labor relations. Isn't it time to get Charles into your facility to help you optimize your processes? 

Who Needs a Security Guard?

Our job isn’t to appraise what you produce, how you produce it, or whom you sell to. We believe every business is entitled to function safely and without threat of damages or loss. At our core, we are intensely interested in keeping you and your business secure. A few of our typical clients include:
  • Hotels
  • Retail Stores
  • 24-hour businesses
  • Hospitals
  • Office Buildings
  • Residential Communities
  • Airports
Virtually any place of business can benefit from our security protection and we can tailor that to the proper safety that your business needs. Full customization of security guard schedules, presentation (plainclothes or uniform?), and equipment means that this security feature caters to the image you have cultivated for your business, and makes this a necessity for the safety of your assets.

What Can Security Guards Do?

We understand that each of our client’s needs are unique. That is why our security guards are trained to provide a variety of services. Some of the things we offer include:

MONITORING

You may want to establish a security guard service that does more than patrol. You may need someone to review surveillance or even walk employees or customers to their vehicles after hours. A security guard can help defend a number of aspects of your business that doesn’t involve simply walking around the perimeter (although, that can certainly be an option as well!). It boils down to asking yourself what are your security needs? We have years of experience in creating the ideal protection package by asking the questions no one else thinks to ask. We find the weak links in your armor and, instead of attempting to hide them, actually find ways to fix them.

PREVENTION

Hiring a security company as part of your overall safety plan will go a long way in preventing criminals from targeting you. Unfortunately, businesses are a target for vandalism and theft. A secure presence will certainly discourage criminal activity and help your business keep a safe reputation. Guardian recognizes the line between creating a crime-free zone (like a prison cell) and a place wherein crime is significantly deterred all the while business is still encouraged. Your business is not a jail cell, it shouldn’t feel or behave like one. There should be a balance between safety and claustrophobia. Our experience in protecting businesses means we know where that line is for your business.

MANAGING CRIME

The security guards from Guardian are top of the line. We train our professionals to handle crimes that range from theft, violence, vandalism—and everything in between. We want our clients to feel confident when they call on our services; they get the most competent people in the industry. We understand that quality service means constantly evolving with the changes that occur in society. That is why our personnel is required to continue training and implement those new security techniques in their positions. Our constant and consistent training does not stop at physical reactions to physical crimes. Our personnel are trained in everything from reading surveillance and interpreting body language and micro expressions to categorizing anonymous threats and responding to the newest trends of criminal activity in the age of the Internet. Just as you and your business change and evolve with time, so too do our security guards — by remaining adaptable at all times.

PEACE OF MIND

It has been proven that the presence of a security guard actually offers people a sense of safety. People simply feel better when they know that a trained professional is keeping an eye out. As a business owner, it lets you know that someone else also has your best interest in mind. When you succeed, we know that we have succeeded as well. It’s a win-win from both sides of the spectrum.