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3 Things to Remember About the Fire Alarms in Your Home

12/31/2021 (Permalink)

smoke detector with white smoke and red warning light You should locate a smoke alarm in each room.

Tips To Help You Maintain Your Fire Alarm and Home Safe

When you install a fire alarm in your Percy Priest, TN home there are a few things you may want to keep in mind to ensure it functions properly. The following tips can help you maintain these units, and keep your home safe.

1. Where They Should Be Located

Many professionals, such as those working at your local fire damage restoration service, recommend that an alarm be located inside each bedroom. An alarm should also be outside the bedrooms, although only a single unit is needed if there is a shared hallway outside multiple rooms. Additionally, it’s important to have an alarm on each floor of the home, and in high-risk areas such as the kitchen.

2. How Many You Should Have

It’s recommended that a fire alarm be located in multiple places throughout the home. Thus when calculating how many alarms you should have you may need to do a little math. You should have a minimum of one alarm per floor and one for each bedroom. Add to that an alarm for each high-risk location and you will have the total units for your space.

3. When You Should Change the Batteries

An alarm that doesn’t work won’t help protect your home from fire damage. This is why it’s highly recommended that you change the batteries in your alarms at least once a year. Most professionals recommend choosing an easy-to-remember date and always changing your battery then in order to maintain a regular schedule. One example is daylight savings when you are already changing any clocks.

Remember when placing a new fire alarm in your home that it should be located in a place where it can easily be heard. You should have one in each bedroom, and one in shared spaces such as the kitchen. You should also regularly maintain any units in your home. Remember, if a fire does occur, a restoration service can help. If your home does sustain fire or smoke damage restoration service can help.

Helpful Tips for Safely Dealing With Contaminated Water

12/28/2021 (Permalink)

Bottom of a toilet seeping water A leaking toilet in Smith Springs, TN.

Tips for Dealing With Contaminated Water Safely

When water enters your home uninvited, it can be tainted with any number of unwanted pollutants. Some types of water damage might be relatively harmless to you and your family, but others may pose a real threat and require professional intervention. The three categories of contaminated water include:

• Category 1 – Water that is clean and free from contaminants that could be harmful to humans.
• Category 2 – Sometimes called grey water, this water contains physical, chemical or biological impurities that can be considered hazardous.
• Category 3 – Also known as black water, this water is heavily polluted with any variety of dangerous toxins, including human waste.

Source Before Color

While each classification may include references to color, do not judge the problem on color alone. The source of the water entering your residence can be crucial when it comes to determining which category of contamination is present. For example, a seeping toilet may appear to be only leaking clear water, but that water could be flowing from a tainted supply line. There may be unseen fecal contaminants that could place this water damage firmly in Category 3.

Safety Before Solutions

Finding the source of the contaminated water is a great way to determine what kind of problem you may have, but it may not be the safest course of action for you and your family. Discovering you have a Category 1 water issue from an overflowing bath may be straightforward, but safely assessing the source of a Category 3 leak can be hazardous work, and consulting with a professional is always prudent. If your bathtub is overflowing, for example, feel free to step away from this article and turn off the tap, but if you suspect (or are unsure) that your water leak could be polluted, take more cautious measures and contact the professionals immediately.

It is important to remember that there are several different categories of water contamination, and while you may feel confident in handling some problems on your own in Smith Springs, TN, it is always prudent to consult with a water contamination expert when dealing with contaminated water.

Protect Your Commercial Kitchen From Fire Damage With These Tips

12/23/2021 (Permalink)

Fire in Commercial Kitchen While Cooking Fire in a Commercial Kitchen While Cooking

If you own a restaurant, bar or commercial kitchen in Antioch, TN or Nashboro Village, TN, reducing fire risk is critical to continued profitable operation. The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) reports that fire departments responded to over 7,410 structure fires in the kitchen of restaurants and bars in 2017 alone. Most of these fires were preventable, resulting in three deaths, 110 injuries, and $165 million in property damage annually in commercial kitchens. These tips will help keep you and your staff safe while preventing shutdowns due to fire code violations.

What Are My Ducting and Air Movement Requirements to Prevent Fire?

While Chapter 7 of the NFPA 96 Standard for Ventilation Control and Fire Protection of Commercial Cooking Operations covers this extensively, here are a few key items to keep in mind.

First, commercial kitchen ducts should never pass-through firewalls, share an exhaust system with the building ventilation, or have obstructed access panels. While doing these things on a commercial kitchen remodel can save costs in the short term, the fire risk increases significantly. If disregarded, your commercial kitchen work will likely not pass inspection.

Make sure to maintain a minimum clearance of 18 inches between combustible materials and the kitchen ducts. This standard is based on Section 4.2 of the NFPA 96, however is one of the easiest to disregard once the kitchen is operational. Ducts can build up high levels of radiant heat that can ignite combustible materials like boxes, cups, plates, utensils, or other kitchen materials.

If you would like additional information on the types of combustible and non-combustible materials that should and shouldn't be kept near the duct, consult Chapter 3 of the NFPA.

What Are My Commercial Kitchen Fire Extinguisher Requirements?

"The NFPA 96 requires automated fire suppression equipment for all grease removal devices, hood exhaust plenums, and exhaust duct systems in a commercial kitchen, as well as any cooking equipment that produces grease-laden vapors." - Koorsen Fire & Security

The NFPA 96 requires use of class K fire extinguishers in conjunction with automatic fire extinguishing systems. These extinguishers also require installed placards stating their extinguisher class. However, in the case of a commercial kitchen fire, it's critical to activate the automatic fire extinguisher system before using portable-type extinguishers. This is because high-efficiency cooking appliances in many modern commercial kitchens are capable of achieving high temperatures that can raise the vegetable oils to intensely high temperatures. When oil ignites at these high temperatures, it can already be so hot that a portable extinguisher is not enough to stop the flames.

Another standard that you should familiarize yourself with is the UL 300 standard.

According to this article by Insureon, a kitchen’s cooking equipment must meet these UL 300 requirements:

  • Fire-extinguishing nozzles in the hood, ducts, and above each cooking appliance
  • An automatic fuel shut-off capabilities for both gas and electric power sources
  • A manual fuel shut-off pull for all power sources
  • A wet-chemical fire-extinguishing system that meets UL 300 criteria (one of which is undergoing semiannual checkups by a certified professional)

If you need immediate assistance after a fire, our teams are available 24/7/365. With our promise of being Faster to Any Size Disaster, you can count on SERVPRO of Southeast Nashville to be there when it counts. Call us today at (615) 731-4222 for rapid assistance.

Easy Steps To Take To Stop a Constantly Flushing Toilet

12/23/2021 (Permalink)

Constant toilet flushing A toilet that won't stop flushing can be frustrating.

Simple Steps to Stop a Constantly Flushing Toilet

Whether it is a toilet overflow or a toilet that will not stop flushing in Nashboro Village, TN, both can be equally frustrating problems to deal with. Here are the steps to take for both an automatic and manual flushometer to stop a constantly flushing toilet.

1. Shut Off the Flushometer

The first step to resolving the issue for a manual flusher is to shut the flushometer off. There will be a spot where you can use a flat screwdriver on both sides of the flushometer. Using the screwdriver, turn the slot to turn off the water completely; this will help you avoid a toilet flood as you work to fix the problem.

2. Remove the Top

The next step is to remove the top of the toilet. If you are dealing with a manual flushometer, you must use a wrench to unscrew the lid. It is wise to do this as soon as possible to avoid toilet overflow.

3. Clean the Gasket

Remove the flange cover. Once you do that, you will see a gasket loaded with sediment. Take the gasket out and clean it thoroughly, including the weep hole found on the gasket. Follow all the two preceding steps in reverse order now that the gasket is clean, and this should stop a toilet from flushing.

4. Clean the Diaphragm

If you are working with an automatic flushometer, you simply hold down the chrome button until you hear two clicks that are two seconds apart. If you hear the clicks, you need to clean out the diaphragm kit, which is found when you remove the top of the flushometer.

5. Tighten Solenoid

The final step is to tighten the solenoid. Then observe whether there are any missing bowl rings or if any of them are double stacked. If so, you’ll need to replace or remove them.

Follow the steps above to fix an automatic or manual flushometer that won’t stop running. However, if you have experienced a toilet overflow or a flooded bathroom in your property, contact commercial building restoration services as soon as possible.

Why Trust SERVPRO of Southeast Nashville’s Restoration Team

12/20/2021 (Permalink)

SERVPRO Trucks on the jobsite SERVPRO Trucks on a jobsite

Here at SERVPRO of Southeast Nashville we pride ourselves on getting and keeping quality, qualified team members that can be trusted with large loss jobs on the smallest scale to large-territory catastrophic loss in Nashville, TN, Smith Springs, TN and more. Maintaining an average of 150 personnel over three divisions, and multiple states – here are the strategic ways that we maintain the talent that you need, when you need it so that we can always be….here to help.

Restoration Team Onboarding

One of the things that makes SERVPRO of Southeast Nashville an industry leader in commercial large loss restoration, starts with our extensive onboarding program. Every new employee goes through onboarding which includes the history of SERVPRO (did you know we have been around since 1967?) Our family-grounded roots, on-the-job training (OJT) with other divisions, from when you first call about property damage, until we walk the final job with you and make sure that you are happy, and all of the logistics that go on in between.

Quality Property Damage Repair Training

All our restoration professionals attend, complete, and pass IICRC training – the science behind drying. We also have in-house training bays, where new technicians can learn the proper way to test and remove drywall, learn how our equipment operates, and practice restoration skills before they are moved into live property damage events. 

Continued Restoration Certifications

SERVPRO Disaster Recovery is a career path for our industry professionals, as our certified experts continue with training throughout their SERVPRO careers. Here is a sampling of some of the many certifications that we offer to our staff to ensure that you have the highest level of adept professionals, restoring your business quickly and safely so that you can get back to doing, what you do best.

WRT – Water Damage Restoration Technicians

AMRT – Applied Microbial Remediation Technicians

ASD – Applied Structural Drying

CDS – Commercial Drying Specialist

FSRT – Fire and Smoke Restoration Technician

ICRA – Infectious Control Risk Assessment

Our experts are trained in advanced restoration technology and techniques.

Property Restoration Team Coaching

We tend to attract lifetime learners because that is what we are! With every day and every job being completely different (from the pigeon that caught a building on fire with a lit cigarette – True Story! to the bride on her wedding day, who hung her wedding gown on a sprinkler head on the 17th floor of her hotel – TRUE STORY!), we must stay on our toes!

Our technicians are coached daily in safety meetings (before entering your property) along with weekly, scheduled coaching sessions. We want our guys and gals to have the confidence and expertise to handle any mold, water, or fire damage situation, no matter how unique, so they are empowered to do whatever it takes to keep your business doors open, if possible, in the event of a disaster.

Commercial Restoration Management Expertise

Our management team is one of the best in the industry, don’t take our word for it either! Our employee reviews and quarterly SWOTs give us this information on an ongoing basis. Don’t be surprised if you see a Director, President, or CEO walking your affected area with one of our skilled Project Managers. Our management team’s willingness to get in the trenches with our crews is one of the many things that make us exceptional and set us apart.

Family Work Environment

While we may be a large-scale $40M Disaster Recovery Team uniquely qualified to handle any size loss, our strong beliefs and value systems are built on our grass-roots family environment. And we care for our customers with that same “family” heart.

Growth Opportunities for Restoration Professionals

Because we hold the lifetime learner in such high regard, there are growth opportunities available to every SERVPRO employee! Our current President and Vice President started with a SERVPRO in their teenage years as water technicians. We understand our industry unlike any other, we created the blueprint, and we have been recreating it ever since.

Here to Help for All of Your Property Damage Needs

Our team members have been built, like a machine with a heart to respond fast, to care, to do the right thing, and do it with excellence.

We are proud when our team is called to respond to one of your bad days. Because personally, we know you are in the best hands in the industry, and it is about to get better.

If you or someone you know wants to start an amazing career OR if you simply want to know more about protecting your facility from a disaster, contact me via email.

Heather Featherstone – Director of Sales and Marketing

7-year SERVPRO Lifetime Learner

Nashville Christmas Tree Fire Prevention

12/13/2021 (Permalink)

Christmas Tree in Nashville Christmas Tree

Christmas is here in Nashville, TN and fully loaded with the wonderful sights, sounds, and aromas! Music fills the house with the melodic joys of years gone by and those to come. Traditionally, a Christmas tree is the centerpiece of the family’s holiday. The tree is colorful and adorned with memories and beauty that we wait all year to see. If your family purchases live trees, the fragrance of Christmas fills the room with holiday cheer. The gifts underneath say that family is the real present of the season. SERVPRO of Southeast Nashville celebrates that treasure with you, because we believe that family is everything!

The Fire Damage Threat

The National Fire Prevention Association ( states that Christmas trees are the cause of an average of 160 house fires per year. The trees and needles are rich with highly flammable oils that can combust easily. Couple that dynamic with the oxygen in the large surface area, and porous structure of the tree, and you have a beautiful natural threat to your home without the proper caution and care. Additionally, short circuits in cheaply made Christmas lights are capable of igniting a fire that can quickly get out of control and cause real fire damage to your home and family. Even LED lights can get hot enough to catch fire.

Christmas Tree Safety Measures to Prevent Fire

If you enjoy live Christmas trees, make sure to take the appropriate safety measures to limit the possibilities of home fire damage this season. Keep your tree appropriately watered as the dryer the condition, the more flammable. Purchase quality lights and make sure that they are safely connected to each other and the electrical source. Install trees away from wood burning fireplaces, candles, heaters, and stoves. Also, keep your trees as far away as possible from hent vents. Turn off the lights when you sleep or are away from home. Finally, keep a fire extinguisher in the rooms where your trees are displayed.

Rock Around that Tannenbaum

At SERVPRO of Southeast Nashville, we hope your season is truly joyous and peaceful. In the hustle and bustle of the season, remember to be present and fully take in every sweet moment.  As you enjoy your family and friends, rest in the fact that you took every precaution to protect what is most important to you this holiday season! We wish all our valued SERVPRO of Southeast Nashville customers and friends a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

How to Keep Your Office's Toilet From Clogging and Overflowing

11/30/2021 (Permalink)

Clogged toilet Clogged toilet.

How to Keep the Toilet in Your Office from Clogging and Overflowing

Every office becomes inconvenienced when there’s a clogged toilet. You can prevent this from happening at your business in Nashville, TN by following some key recommendations. Overflow Causes

If it’s already too late, these major causes may be the source of your problem:

  • A blocked vent pipe. When external air is unable to enter, flushing becomes impossible. This can usually be cured using a plumber’s snake.
  • A jammed up drain. In these instances, the bowl can overfill. Such obstacles are typically handled with plungers.
  • A broken float mechanism. When this device becomes too high, your tank fills with excess water, causing spillage. Solving this may require a simple adjustment. Otherwise, the entire component could need replacement.

An overflowing or otherwise clogged toilet can always be repaired, but your best option is to avoid the messy situation altogether.

Overflow Prevention
Flushing items other than toilet paper is one major cause of toilet overflow. Common culprits include paper towels, diapers, and feminine hygiene products. Post signage that reminds employees of proper disposal procedure. Excessive toilet paper can also trigger sewage catastrophe, so include wording that encourages multiple flushes. To reduce temptation, equip your bathrooms with ample wastebaskets. Additionally, consider stocking thinner toilet paper. While less comfortable, it will also save you money.
Blockages sometimes stem from compromised sewer lines, often caused by tree roots. When this happens, a plumber becomes necessary. Eliminating growths is expensive and time-intensive, so use an off-the-shelf solution to inhibit roots before they arise. Stoppages can also be caused by hard water, which creates difficult-to-remove calcifications. Regularly use water softeners to alleviate this issue. Low flush commodes can be problematic because they generate low water pressure. If clogging persists, you might need to install different toilets.
Easy, preventative measures can keep your company’s toilets running smoothly. Should a clogged toilet disable your restroom, however, hire a commercial cleaning team to get your facility looking “Like it never even happened.”

Three Types of Smoke Cleaning

11/30/2021 (Permalink)

Thermal fogger, smoke odor removal Thermal fogging directly addresses removing smoke.

Three Methods of Smoke Cleaning

Smoke damage can be a lingering problem for your Nashville, TN business. Fortunately, there are a variety of smoke removal techniques on the market today. The following are three of the most common methods of smoke cleaning:

1. Air Filtration
Air filtration devices are a method of smoke removal that generally does not require professional help. There are a variety of machines available. Ones with HEPA or activated carbon filters are particularly effective. Unlike air fresheners and candles that simply mask the odor, filters trap the smoke particles so that they are no longer circulating throughout your property. Make sure to clean the filter according to the manufacturer's directions for best results.

2. Ozone Treatment
Ozone treatments are another popular method of smoke cleaning. Ozone eliminates smoke odor through a process known as oxidation. Due to the chemical structure of ozone, there are extra oxygen atoms available to attach to smoke particles. When the oxygen atoms and smoke particles combine, a new molecule is created. The new molecule does not emit a smoky smell. Ozone can be dangerous, so you may want to hire a professional. They have the knowledge and experience to make sure your property is protected and that it is safe for you, your employees and customers to return to the building.

3. Thermal Fogging
The heat from a fire causes porous surfaces to expand. After the fire is extinguished, the surfaces contract. Smoke particles often get trapped within these surfaces. Thermal fogging directly addresses this problem by re-heating the area being treated, causing the affected surfaces to expand once more. This allows the deodorizing material to reach into all areas that the smoke was able to penetrate.
Smoke cleaning and other aspects of the fire restoration process may seem overwhelming. Fortunately, an experienced restoration service can help you get your business back to preloss condition quickly and safely.

How Bad is Water Damage to my House? Understanding the Important Factors

11/10/2021 (Permalink)

In a water damage event in Hickory Hollow, TN, there are several factors that contribute to whether water damage will be bad for your home. This quick guide is meant to shed light on the factors to consider when determining whether the water damage in your home or business may be serious enough to require professional attention.

The first factor to consider is the category of water intrusion. There are 3 main categories of water, and they are each determined by how contaminated the water is.

Category 1 would be water from a clean water source with little to no risk of causing sickness.

Category 2 water contains a certain degree of chemical, biological, and/or physical contamination. This could be water from a dishwasher drain line for example.

Category 3 water is grossly unsanitary water that may contain pathogens such as a sewage backup.

The quantity of water and potential rate of material evaporation can also be a critical factor in determining how bad the water damage may be to your home. These are typically divided into 4 main Classes.

Class 1 water damage is the least damaging. This type occurs when less than 5% of building materials have absorbed or been affected by water. This class can be cleaned up quickly and easily. This class of water damage may not require professional assistance unless mold is involved.

Class 2 water damage occurs when the water in affected building materials can evaporate quickly, however water in this class has penetrated materials and can begin to show signs of permanent damage if not treated swiftly. Typically, a class 2 water intrusion affects between 5%-40% of an affected area's surfaces. 

Class 3 water damage is when water intrusion has affected greater than 40% of an area's surface, and low evaporation materials have also absorbed water. Class 3 water intrusion should always be handled by professionals to limit permanent damage to building materials.

Class 4 water intrusion is called a specialty drying situation. These materials take the longest to dry because water becomes bound with the material's molecules and requires specialty drying equipment to dry properly. Class 4 intrusion usually takes the longest to occur, but also the longest to dry.

These factors along with the types of affected building materials may increase the potential for hazardous pre-existing conditions to be worsened by the water damage.

Hazardous materials like asbestos or lead may be harmful to your health and definitely require professional attention. It’s also important to consider the risk of electrical shock or gas leaks when wiring junctions or joints are involved.

While there are many more factors to consider when determining how bad water damage may be to your house, our team of professionals is Here to Help if you need immediate assistance. With our team of trained technicians at SERVPRO of Southeast Nashville, we’ll make sure to leave your home "Like it never even happened."

Call us today at (615) 731-4222

How To Stop a Fire Alarm From Beeping

11/10/2021 (Permalink)

Changing battery to a smoke detector Change the batteries of your smoke alarm every six months.

How to Turn Off a Fire Alarm

A fire alarm that starts beeping when there is no fire or smoke requires maintenance. The specific steps to reset your alarm or change the battery depend on the alarm design. Here are three ways to determine what is wrong with an alarm and ensure that it is functioning properly to limit fire damage.

1. Reset and Clean the Alarm

If you are using an alarm powered by a nine-volt battery, detach the unit from the mounting bracket and remove the battery. Press and hold the reset button on a sealed 10-year model with a lithium battery. If the alarm is hardwired, turn off the power supply at the circuit breaker, detach the detector from the mounting bracket, and disconnect the power supply (if present). Press and hold the test button for 15 to 20 seconds. You can also use an air blower to clean out the vents prior to reinstalling the alarm.

2. Change the Batteries

If a fire alarm powered by a replaceable battery starts beeping again, you probably need to change the battery. Switch out nine-volt or other replaceable batteries every six months to one year.

3. Deactivate and Replace the Alarm

If an alarm keeps beeping after being cleaned and having the battery changed, you may need to replace the unit. Remove the batteries from models that rely on them before purchasing and installing another alarm unit. If the model has a sealed 10-year long-life battery, disconnect the alarm and use a screwdriver to pierce the icon of a straight line next to an arrow on the back. Turn the screw to the off position to permanently deactivate the model and drain the battery.

A functional fire alarm can help you limit the amount of fire damage to your residence in Hickory Hollow, TN. If a fire breaks out, contact a fire and smoke damage restoration company.