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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

Archived Blog Posts

3 Tips for Avoiding Homeowners Insurance Rate Increases

11/24/2020 (Permalink)

Blue ballpoint pen, two antique brass keys and a home insurance claim from on a plywood clipboard. Home insurance claim form

3 Tips for Avoiding Homeowners Insurance Rate Increases

Filing a homeowner's insurance claim cannot only lead to an increase in your current insurance rates but also may affect the premiums of future insurance policies. However, there are steps you can take to reduce the chances your insurance rates will go up due to collecting on the policy.

1. Do Not File Claims for Minor Damage
The more claims you make, the more likely your insurance company may increase your rates, cancel your policy or refuse to insure your property. One way to decrease the chances of this happening is to avoid filing claims for minor damage. For example, if your home has water damage from a broken pipe that caused a few kitchen tiles to peel up, it may be better to replace the tiles out of pocket than to file for reimbursement.

2. Keep Your Home in Good Condition
A poorly maintained home is more likely to be damaged in a home flood or other disaster. Keep your roof patched and replace it when needed. Seal any leaks around the windows and doors. Fix any leaking plumbing and repair or replace broken appliances. If you need to file an insurance claim, be sure to mitigate your damage by cleaning up standing water promptly and covering holes in the roof, windows or siding with plywood or tarp. If there is a lot of water in your home, you may want to consider having a water remediation company in Hickory Hollow, TN, dry it out thoroughly.

3. Consult Your Insurance Professional
If you are unsure whether to file a claim or not, ask your insurance agent. Your policy is there to be used when you need it so do not be afraid to ever file a claim.
Rate increases are affected by several factors, including how often you file an insurance claim. Reducing the number of times you file can help you avoid rate increases.

How To Prevent Mold Damage

11/24/2020 (Permalink)

Mold spores, and on the top of the picture it says ANYWHERE Mold can grow mostly anywhere

Black mold and other fungi can be detrimental to your home. Fortunately, serious damage is often preventable.

Preventing Mold Growth

Mold spores are almost everywhere, but they do not all result in an infestation. This is due to the fact that not all areas are conducive to fungal growth. Mold needs three things in order to thrive:

  • Food
  • Warmth
  • Water

Homes often have many food sources for mold, including dust, pulpy items and other organic material. Additionally, most homes are warm enough for mold to grow. Therefore, controlling the moisture in your Percy Priest, TN, home is the best way to prevent a mold infestation. Check regularly for signs of a moisture problem, such as a leak or spill. Resolve any such issues as soon as possible. Keep the humidity in the home below 50%. In humid areas, such as bathrooms and basements, you may need to run a dehumidifier.
In addition to controlling the moisture levels in your home, you can also take steps to minimize the number of mold spores present. HEPA air purifiers are good at trapping spores. Regular carpet cleaning can control the spores that are tracked in on shoes and pet paws. There are also mold-resistant paints and fabrics on the market that are inhospitable to mold and can keep the spores from growing.

Removing Mold Growth
Even the most well-maintained homes can suffer black mold or other types of fungal infestations. If you catch the problem early, it is generally possible to prevent serious damage. Homeowners may be able to address very small areas of mold growth using baking soda or vinegar. Larger infestations generally require professional remediation. In addition to mold cleanup, experienced restoration professionals can help you spot problems and prevent future mold growth.
Black mold is scary but preventable. Thankfully, keeping your home clean and dry and addressing signs of mold early are often all it takes to keep your home safe and clean.

How To Clean Up After a Fire

11/11/2020 (Permalink)

Firemen putting out fire in old building Fire damage in Nashboro Village, TN

Take Cleanup One Step At A Time

Having a business fire is devastating and both physically and mentally exhausting. Although you may know what to do when your business is actively ablaze, you might be at a loss after the fire. There are many factors involved when you are dealing with things like smoke and water cleanup. To get your business back in shape, you need to know how to clean up after a fire. 

Wait Until the Fire Department Says It's Safe
As hard as it is, you should wait to begin your fire cleanup. The fire department might have:

  • Punched holes in walls, ceilings, floors
  • Broken windows
  • Soaked the roof, floor, and electrical appliances
  • Broken furniture or doors

All of these actions can cause hazards and may not be safe. You may also want to wait until an inspector or insurance adjuster comes. If the damage is too great, consider a fire damage restoration company in Nashboro Village, TN.

Start With Smoke Damage
Tackle smoke cleanup before working on water cleanup because you will be putting more water onto things like floors and walls. Start by spraying down the house's exterior if it was damaged in the fire, cleaning gutters, and deciding what needs to be rebuilt and what holes need to be fixed.
You can clean walls and other surfaces with trisodium phosphate. TSP reduces the smell and binds to ash particles on hard surfaces without damaging them further.

Move to Water Damage
Water cleanup is more involved than smoke. Throw away any electronics, furniture, or badly damaged items. Consider hiring a professional for drywall or ceilings, particularly if you need to replace them. Wash all clothing and bring undamaged shoes, leather, and other items outside to dry.
You do not have to be overwhelmed by fire cleanup. Just remember to take it one step at a time, and don't be afraid to call in professionals when necessary.

Why Do Older Rental Properties Have Drain Problems?

11/11/2020 (Permalink)

Man crouching in trench with shovel showing an old terracotta sewer line broken open to reveal a solid tube of invasive tree Tree roots that have grown into pipes may cause clogs in your drains

Older rental properties in Smith Springs, TN, often have clogged or slow-moving drains. These problems are often caused by aging plumbing systems. In some cases, the material used in the pipes is to blame. Between 1978-1995, polybutylene pipes were used extensively, and it's estimated that they were installed in 6 to 10 million homes. It is believed that oxidants, such as chlorine, in the public water supply react with the piping and cause them to flake and become brittle.

What Causes Clogs in Older Homes?

Each older home is different, but common reasons for drain clogs in older homes include:

  • The angle of the pipes to the main line
  • Tree roots that have grown into the pipes
  • Sludge buildup from soap, hair or debris from remodeling projects

Homes built before 1995 may experience drain clogs more frequently. Preventative maintenance is the best way to avoid water damage.

How Can Old Pipes Be Maintained?
If you have a clog, try cleaning the drain with a pipe snake, clean the drain trap if one exists or use a chemical drain cleaner. If you are unable to resolve the problem, call a professional who has experience working with older plumbing.
For regular maintenance, enzyme treatments can be used as a method for preventing slow or clogged drains. Enzyme treatments contain a form of bacteria that feeds on drain-clogging materials such as hair, algae and food waste. They will grow and multiply, spreading beneficial bacteria throughout your drain system. Harsh chemicals can kill the bacteria, so treatments will need to be repeated occasionally. Enzyme treatments will not harm pipes and are safe to use on a regular basis.
If you suspect you have polybutylene pipes in your rental property, call a professional to see what steps to take next.
If you have rental properties with older plumbing or polybutylene pipes, regular maintenance can go a long way in preventing water damage. If clogged drains cause flooding, a flood restoration specialist can help you mitigate any damage.

Commercial Building Damage Caused by Hail

11/11/2020 (Permalink)

Insurance adjuster marked the hail damage on a insureds roof. You can't eliminate the possibility of roof damage from a hailstorm

Hailstorms can wreak havoc on your commercial building in Antioch, TN. Roof damage caused by hail can create leaks inside the structure, but it's not the only way hail can harm your building.

Ways That Hail Can Damage Your Building

There are many ways that hail can damage your business.

Roofing materials and equipment - The roofing materials can crack or become loosened during a hailstorm. HVAC equipment and skylights are prone to hail damage if they aren't properly protected.
Leaks inside the building - Once hail has caused roof damage, water can easily leak into your building, causing structural damage and ruining flooring, furniture and equipment. When that happens, you must call a storm damage restoration service right away.
Outer building materials - Siding can sustain damage and windows can break.

Preparations To Protect Against Hailstorms
Make sure your roofing materials are resistant to strong impact. If they aren't, consider installing new roofing. Hail guards or shields can be installed around HVAC equipment to reduce the risk of damage. Just make sure the materials meet the uplift pressure requirements of ASCE 7.
Skylights must comply with specific standards developed by the American Society for Testing Materials and the American National Standards Institute, more commonly known as ASTM and ANSI, respectively. Solar panels must also be designed to meet the standards of the International Electrotechnical Commission. These standards have created rigorous testing methods to ensure that equipment can withstand hailstorms.
It's important for your maintenance department to conduct routine inspections on the materials and equipment on the roof. You should also inspect the roof right before and immediately after a hailstorm. Many business owners also schedule an annual inspection with a professional to ensure there are no hidden problems.
You can't eliminate the possibility of roof damage from a hailstorm, but if you follow some important steps you can reduce the risk of serious damage to your building.

Understanding Flood Cuts and Their Usage

10/20/2020 (Permalink)

drywall removal from a water damage from a roof leak Any situation that involves contamination is one where a flood cut is needed

If a torrential downpour or other disaster has resulted in the flooding of your home in Nashville, TN, then your walls are probably waterlogged and require repairs. In the case that your home was constructed after the year 1960, you most likely have drywall. Homes with drywall afflicted with a sudden influx of flooding may need to have a flood cut performed on them, either by the homeowner or a professional restoration service. What does this mean exactly? Read on to find out.

What Are Flood Cuts?

In many cases, you might not want to tear out soaked drywall; having to remove the walls is inconvenient and replacement can be costly. However, this is not realistically possible all the time. Instead, sections of drywall may need to be cut out. These sections are usually removed a foot to a foot and a half above where the damage caused by the water ends. This is what is referred to as a flood cut.

When Are Flood Cuts Needed?
Drenched drywall does not always need to be cut out. So when is this process needed? Any situation that involves contamination is one where a flood cut is needed. Times when a flood cut must occur include:

  • If the affected area was backed by insulation
  • If a mold infestation has claimed your walls
  • If the tide of water in your home is from an outer water source like river overflow or runoff that might contain chemicals, sewage or other contaminants.

When Aren't Flood Cuts Needed?
However, there are situations where a flood cut is not necessary. Specifically, a flood cut is not required when two conditions are met: There is no insulation or mold present and the water in the drywall is clean and contaminant-free. Avoiding employing a flood cut means the wall may be able to be saved without dry wall removal.
Not every flooding incident will end up requiring a flood cut. Many will, but not all. There still exists hope for wall preservation in some situations, so it's best not to automatically assume flooded walls are doomed.

5 Signs You Have a Leaky Shower

10/14/2020 (Permalink)

Leakage of water from a shower cabin with glass wall that is damaged Shower leak in Percy Priest, TN

Five Signs You Have A Leaky Shower

A shower or bathtub leak may seem like a small issue, but the residual water damage can wreck havoc on your home if left untreated. If you suspect that your home in Percy Priest, TN, is dealing with a shower leak, then you need to act quickly in order to prevent subsequent issues, such as unwanted mold growth. Here are five tell-tale signs that you have a leaky shower.

1. Water Stains on the Ceilings
Check the ceilings on the floor directly below your bathroom. If you notice ugly, brown water stains spreading across the ceiling then you probably have a leaky shower. If your ceiling is sagging or noticeably bulging, then you need to contact professional help immediately.

2. Cracked or Stained Bathroom Tiles
Bathrooms face a lot of moisture and water on a daily basis, so their flooring is naturally able to resist a bit of splashing. However, they can only handle so much water. Cracked or stained bathroom tiles are indicative of problems such as a shower pan leak or other types of water damage.

3. Mold or Mildew Growth
Mold and mildew both thrive in moisture, making your bathroom the perfect place for them to grow. While occasional mold growth isn't necessarily indicative of a larger problem, you may want to start investigating if you notice that the fungi are reappearing regularly.

4. Warped or Stained Walls
Check for damaged paint and wallpaper on your walls. Any cracks or chips could indicate a shower or bathtub leak. In extreme cases, the walls might bulge or warp as a result of the excess water building up behind them. If that's the case, you need to contact professional help.
A shower or bathtub leak can cause irreparable water damage if left untreated. If you notice one or more of the above signs, then you need to contact water remediation experts to help resolve the issue.

How To Find the Right Air Purifier to Reduce Mold Spores in Your Home

9/30/2020 (Permalink)

Air purifier machine in a house Make sure you're ready to take on that cost, as this is what makes the air purifier effective

Features You Should Look For When Shopping For An Air Purifier

After you experience water damage in your home in Hickory Hollow, TN, or even if you just live in a humid climate, you've probably encountered mold in your house. After you've used a mold cleanup company to get rid of the damage, air filtration can be a good way to continue to reduce the number of spores that can create another problem. Here are some features you should look for when shopping for an air purifier.

1. True HEPA Filter
A high-efficiency particulate air filter will trap the majority of mold spores that flow through it. Avoid air filtration systems that say they have a HEPA-type filter, as these will not trap as many of the minuscule mold particles.

2. Appropriate for the Size of Your Space
Look for a purifier that has an Association of Home Appliance Manufacturers certification so that you can see what size of room the purifier can handle. Make sure you get one big enough to thoroughly process the air in your home or the affected room. You may have to get several units if you can't find one that can handle your space.

3. Filter Replacements
While you're probably going to have to replace the filter in whatever unit you use, check to see how much replacements cost and how often you'll need to change them out. Make sure you're ready to take on that cost, as this is what makes the air purifier effective.

4. Noise Level
If you are going to put the air purifier in your bedroom, you'll want to make sure it's quiet enough that it won't disturb your sleep or produces the right level of white noise for your comfort. Even if you're going to have the unit in your living space, you'll want to make sure it isn't disruptive to your conversations and other activities.
While these are just a few of the features of air filtration systems you should take into account, keeping them in mind will help you find the right unit for you.

3 Things to Remember About the Fire Alarms in Your Home

9/18/2020 (Permalink)

Smoke alarm surrounded by smoke 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 Antioch, 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 a restoration service can help.

Protect Every Part of Your Business from Hurricanes

9/9/2020 (Permalink)

Water, food, shelter, light source, first aid kit are just a few of the items needed to survive. Prepare a first aid kit in case of a disaster

Create A Plan To Protect Your Employees, Building, And Documents

Your business is composed of multiple parts that need protection from natural disasters such as hurricanes. Your employees are exposed to danger, the building can suffer from hurricane damage and important documents may get destroyed. Before such an event hits Smith Springs, TN, you will need to create a plan that protects these essential parts as much as possible.

Employees
The safety and wellbeing of your crew is the most important task at hand. As you think about the emergency plan, assemble the following items:

  • First aid supplies and manual
  • Emergency contact information
  • Basic tools and equipment
  • Three days' worth of food and water
  • Flashlights and battery-operated radio

These are some of the essentials, but you can always add more resources like an electrical generator and bedding items. Highlight escape routes towards the storm shelter and inform your personnel about them.

Property
The storm's high winds can leave behind a significant amount of hurricane damage on your property. Both the building and the equipment inside are essential to your business. Prepare for a potential storm by using sandbags to absorb floodwater and blocking doors and windows with plywood to prevent the wind-breaking them. Turn off and secure utilities and electronics since they can complicate matters during the hurricane. Contact commercial storm damage specialists to make any necessary repairs.

Documents
The documents that contain information critical to your establishment are also the most vulnerable. Even the slightest water damage can ruin them. Determine which documents are the most important and the most difficult to replicate. Keep them in an alternate location outside the premises or under waterproof protection. Additionally, try to back up these documents digitally so you can download and print them in case the originals are destroyed.
Every aspect of your company is in peril when a hurricane arrives, from your hard-working employees to the building itself. Create a plan that accounts for hurricane damage, document recovery, and everyone's health.

Safety Practices for Removing Mold

8/19/2020 (Permalink)

Hand in blue glove tears off wallpapers damaged by fungus Mold removal in Nashville, TN

Protect Yourself During Mold Removal

There are crucial steps you must take to ensure your safety when you are removing mold from a building. Before beginning to remove mold, you must know a few of the steps, so that you can protect yourself.

Wear PPE
You should always wear PPE when removing mold to protect yourself from spores, dust, and any other dangers that may arise. The PPE that you should always wear includes:

  • Hard hat
  • Eye protection
  • Job appropriate gloves
  • Protective footwear
  • Respiratory protection

Use Safe Practices
Aside from wearing PPE, you must also take necessary precautions to minimize your exposure to spores while performing mold remediation. You should throw away any items you find that have water damage, have been wet for 48 hours, or have extensive mold growth and cannot be cleaned. Wrap any items that you intend to discard in plastic bags or sheets. Once they have been properly sealed, you can throw them away as usual. Remember to be cautious while performing these tasks to avoid disturbing the mold. Since you will end up disturbing some of the mold spores during your removal, have natural or local exhaust ventilation at all times.
Clean any salvageable materials with a mild detergent. If you notice that mold remains after rinsing the detergent off, use bleach or another strong cleaner to disinfect the items. However, you should never mix bleach with cleaning products that contain ammonia. Once the area has been thoroughly cleaned and dried, you should vacuum all surfaces with a HEPA vacuum. You may also use a HEPA vacuum in surrounding areas to ensure you have removed all of the mold and spores. At no point during this remediation should you eat, drink, or smoke in the workspace. Because of these necessary precautions, it is often best to let mold remediation professionals come and remove your mold for you.
During your mold removal project, you must take the necessary steps to protect yourself. Wearing PPE, such as eye protection and a respirator mask, avoiding disturbing mold, and thoroughly cleaning salvageable materials will allow you to safely remove any mold from your business in Nashville, TN.

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

8/19/2020 (Permalink)

toilet paper put in Flush.used paper clogging the toilet Clogged toilet

Every office becomes inconvenienced when there’s a clogged toilet. You can prevent this from happening at your business in Nashboro Village, 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.”

Preventing Water Damage With a Sump Pump

8/7/2020 (Permalink)

New sump pump with an attached yellow emergency backup pump The best way to keep the bottom of your house dry is by practicing pump maintenance

Your house in Percy Priest, TN, is vulnerable if you live in a flood-prone area or if you go through frequent precipitation. The sump pump in your basement is one of the best measures against potential water damage from these occurrences. Learn about how these devices stop humidity, some maintenance tactics, and what to do when the basement becomes flooded.

Benefits of Sump Pumps

Sump pumps are composed of two parts: the sump pit and the pump. Excess water flows to the pit via drains or the ground. The pump is a device installed inside the pit that works alongside it. When the water reaches a certain level, the pump moves the water from the pit to areas outside your property. This function keeps the building dry and prevents water damage, which is not always easy to resolve.

Maintenance Tips
The best way to keep the bottom of your house dry is by practicing pump maintenance. You will keep the sump pump in great shape by:

  • Testing the unit every spring by dumping a bucket of water into the pit
  • Removing debris and other obstructions from the pit and the pump
  • Inspecting the ground fault circuit interrupter's connection to the pump
  • Replacing the back-up battery every two years

By performing these maintenance tasks, you will ensure the system works as intended. If you notice something is wrong with it, call a plumber immediately to fix it before the problem escalates.

Handling Water Damage
At rare times, your unit can malfunction and you will have a flooded basement. Prioritize the safety of everyone in your household by turning off the power to the area. After that, salvage whatever items you can and call your insurance company and emergency remediation services. These professionals will help you repair the area and your belongings from any water damage.
Your sump pump is the best measure against potential flooding. Remember its purpose, install one if you do not have it yet and keep it well maintained to protect your home.

The Surest WayTo Find Out If You Have a Mold Problem

7/29/2020 (Permalink)

Green mold growth on the corner of ceiling Mold growth in Hickory Hollow, TN

If you have had any moisture issues in your home, you might be concerned about the growth of mold. After all, mold loves to grow in damp conditions. Many times it can be spotted by the growth of green or dark colonies on walls or ceilings. Other times, though, its presence can be hidden behind walls and can be difficult to find. Even though the mold is out of sight it can be still be causing damage to your home in Hickory Hollow, TN. An indoor environmental specialist working with a professional mold remediation company is an effective way to find out for sure if you have a mold problem.

The Benefits of a Professional Mold Test

It's possible to purchase a home mold test kit, but these DIY kits have a number of drawbacks. An indoor environmental specialist has been trained and certified to conduct a reliable test and to interprets the results. This approach produces many benefits:

  • A clear indication of if and where mold is present
  • A reduced chance of misinterpretation of results
  • A possible identification of the type of mold present

Once the results of the test are known, a team of technicians will develop a plan of action to deal with mold growth. One of the first steps is mold containment, which makes sure the fungus does not spread any further throughout your house.

The Advantages of a Quality Cleanup
The solution to a mold problem often involves the location and treatment of a water problem. Since mold thrives in moist conditions, the remediation process seeks to eliminate excess moisture in a house. This can be done by finding and treating the source of moisture and then drying and ventilating the area with vacuums and fans. After the property is cleaned, an indoor environmental specialist can retest the area and determine if the mold count is low enough. While it is impractical to eliminate all mold spores in a home, it is important to eradicate mold colonies.

Three Types of Smoke Cleaning

7/9/2020 (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 Antioch, 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 You Can Prevent Water Damage in Your Building

6/15/2020 (Permalink)

drain and flowing water Water in home can occur due to poor drainage

For the most part, you can't predict when a disaster may happen. However, there are steps you can take to reduce your risks of certain incidents such as flooding. Water at home is one of these. If you are proactive and wise, you can keep your building safe from water. Being vigilant is critical to your safety.

Frequent Inspections

Some flooding in Smith Springs, TN, can start due to extreme weather or main sewer line breaks. These are out of your control. However, water damage is often the result of a broken pipe or other plumbing problems. At least once a year, have a professional examine and maintain the following in your building:

  • Inspect all pipes for damage, including leaks.
  • Ensure that the water heater and other appliances are working properly.
  • Inspect the roof and foundation for any damage.

Pay Attention to the Drainage
Water in home can occur due to poor drainage. It doesn't take a monsoon to flood your office. If rainfall isn't draining away from the property correctly, it can pool up near the foundation and find its way inside. Make sure the rain gutters and downspouts are free of dirt and other debris. The drainage system should divert water effectively from the premises.

Grade the Property
The land on which your building sits should slope so that water doesn't gather close to the facility. Consult a landscaper, if necessary, to make any changes.

Other Landscaping Ideas
Pipe cleanup isn't the only consequence of flooding. Water damage can also happen from storms and overflowing waterways nearby. The way you landscape your property can prevent floods. Plant trees along the perimeter of the grounds. Place native plants and deep mulch in flowerbeds along the outside of your building.
Professional cleanup companies do an excellent job of removing floodwater. Still, you can avoid the stress of water at home by following these guidelines.

5 Tips for Dealing with Water Damage

6/2/2020 (Permalink)

Close up of an air mover way behind a dehumidifier in a home Water damage is no problem for SERVPRO

5 Tips for Dealing with Water Damage

When you have water in home areas from a broken pipe in your Nashville, TN, home, you may be concerned about water damage. There are a few things you can do to help protect your home. These five tips may help.

1. Contact a Professional

The first step toward a water damage restoration should be to contact a local restoration service. These professionals should have the tools and training needed to deal with the cleanup and restoration of your home. They may even be able to work with your insurance company.

2. Remove the Water Quickly

It’s important to remove any water as quickly as possible. A pump or water-rated vacuum can be used, as well as rugs or a squeegee. A professional restoration service will often have equipment that can help remove water quickly.

3. Thoroughly Dry the Area

After the water from a broken pipe or another flood source has been removed it’s important to dry the area as thoroughly as possible. In many cases, a dehumidifier may help.

4. Clean the Space

After the water is removed and space is dried, the area will need to be cleaned. This is an important step for preventing the spread of any bacteria that may have been in the floodwater.

5. Clean Affected Items

After flooding in your home, your household items may need to be cleaned as well. The professionals working on the restoration can help with this task with various methods depending on object type and material. A restoration service may also be able to salvage paperwork and electronic devices.

If a broken pipe has caused water damage in your home, these five tips may help. Contact a professional and remove the water as quickly as possible. Thoroughly dry the area and then clean the space. Afterward, you can clean any affected items as well.

3 Essential Fire-Prevention Tools For Your Home

6/2/2020 (Permalink)

Smoke alarm with the phrase Vacuuming lightly Vacuuming the device exterior regularly to clear dust and cobwebs

3 Essential Fire-Prevention Tools For Your Home

Have you had the occasion to operate a fire extinguisher? Most people haven't and might waste valuable time figuring it out in an emergency.
You might think it will never happen to you, but home fires strike over 300,000 times each year. These disasters can devastate personal property, and preparedness is your best defense against serious damage. Make sure you have these three essential home fire readiness tools on hand in a disaster.

1. Smoke Alarms
A functioning smoke alarm notifies you when a dangerous level of smoke is present. Whereas a fire extinguisher is useful once you discover a fire, smoke alarms are your early warning. For your alarms to behave as designed, it’s important that you perform regular maintenance tasks. Consider adding the following practices to your home maintenance schedule:

  • Replacing batteries every six to nine months or purchasing a unit equipped with a 10-year permanent battery
  • Testing your equipment once per month to confirm proper operation
  • Vacuuming the device exterior regularly to clear dust and cobwebs

Your smoke alarms can offer you the intended measure of safety and security if you are willing to prioritize their care and maintenance.

2. Fire Extinguishers
In the event a blaze should start in your home, you would undoubtedly benefit from having a fire extinguisher nearby. Place an extinguisher on each floor in an easily accessible location. Read the instructions carefully so you are familiar with the operation. Your local fire restoration specialist should also be happy to provide additional extinguisher-operation training.

3. Fire Sprinklers
Sprinklers are not always required but they can significantly reduce your level of damage during a disaster. They are capable of operating while you are not at home and can control the fire while emergency services are responding. In many situations, sprinklers can mean the difference between total destruction and some smoke and water cleanup.
Adequate fire preparedness can significantly minimize disaster risk for your Nashboro Village, TN, home. Operational smoke alarms, well-placed fire extinguishers, and automatic sprinklers constitute the trifecta of protection from fire-related property damage.

What To Do if a Pipe Break Floods Your Furnace

5/14/2020 (Permalink)

A burst pipe at the furnace and water tank has caused a leak on the basement floor of a house. If there's a burst pipe, for example, a furnace flood could occur in your building.

What To Do if a Pipe Break Floods Your Furnace

Within your building are many parts, components, and systems. These all work together to provide essential needs and comforts for you and all the occupants. Issues such as water damage can threaten your safety and your business operations. If there's a burst pipe, for example, a furnace flood could occur in your building. The damage could have many negative consequences, so decisive action is required.

Causes of Pipe Breaks
A pipe break is one of the leading causes of building floods in Hickory Hollow, TN. This problem can spill hundreds or thousands of gallons of water in your building, causing a furnace flood, among other concerns. Typical causes include:

  • Clogs from dirt, toilet paper, waste, and other debris
  • Frozen pipes due to cold temperatures and poor insulation on the pipes
  • Worn-out, decayed pipes due to lack of maintenance, wear and tear or age

Calling the Pros
A flooded furnace will derail your building's heating system. Not only will you want to enlist the services of a flood remediation company, but you need an HVAC professional to assess the damage of the furnace. A technician will evaluate the extent of the damage and determine whether you'll need a new furnace or whether some repairs can make it operable again. The best companies can send technicians to your building on the same day as your call.

Cleaning the Air Ducts
Flooding the furnace will also affect the air ducts throughout your building. Even if a professional technician repairs the furnace and gets it up and running, clogged air ducts will restrict airflow throughout the facility. Before turning on the heating system again, make sure you hire someone to thoroughly do air duct cleaning and test the heating system for efficiency.
After removing the water from a furnace flood, there is more work to do. Repairing or replacing the furnace and cleaning air ducts will help ensure that your heating system continues to work properly.

Safe Use of Buildings During Mold Removal

5/14/2020 (Permalink)

The finger of a woman turning off an AC Turn off HVAC system, so spores don't spread into other areas of the property

Safe Use of Buildings During Mold Removal

Mold is a common concern for many property owners and in many cases has become so familiar that people don't take appropriate steps to remediate the situation. Unfortunately, there are some reasons to make mold removal a top concern:

  • The presence of mold, even unseen, can lead to unpleasant odors.
  • Mold spreads quickly and may affect entire buildings before it's found.
  • Mold damages the materials it lives on, including wood, drywall, fabrics, insulation, and even metals.

If nothing else, the sight of mold on otherwise clean walls can make your Percy Priest, TN, property look old, rundown, or unclean.

Safety and Comfort for Building Occupants
Once you've scheduled mold removal, you may wonder how to proceed as usual while mold cleanup and remediation professionals tackle the cleanup efforts. Happily, there are steps you can take to keep your employees and other building occupants comfortable. There are also protocols the professionals will take to keep mold contained.

Containment Steps You Can Take
As soon as you've noticed mold, take steps to reduce further mold growth. For example, keep your employees away from the area. Turn off fans and the HVAC system, so spores don't spread into other areas of the property. Don't touch the mold or allow others to touch it.

Professional Containment Procedures
While working, professionals may introduce containment procedures, such as hanging physical barriers or installing negative air chambers. This is often the case when professionals are handling black mold or if there are very large colonies. During the cleaning and disinfection processes, professionals may introduce the use of air filtration systems or wear personal protective equipment.

Continued Building Use During Removal
There are many steps involved in mold removal. The good news is that you can probably keep your building open and operation during the cleanup process because of containment steps. During cleanup efforts, ask professionals how to prevent future mold growth.

Smart Advice for Cleaning After a Storm

5/1/2020 (Permalink)

stair of a House fully flooded during the flooding of the river A flooded home in Antioch, TN

Smart Advice for Cleaning After a Storm

One of the biggest fears for homeowners and renters is the flooding of a property. All of that water coming into a house is scary and it creates an enormous mess of dirty water, sand, and debris. The temptation for many people is to begin the cleanup at once, but here is some better advice: stop for a moment and focus on safety. The aftermath of a storm creates the following hazardous conditions:

  • Contaminated water that contains dangerous substances
  • Shock hazards from wet electrical systems
  • Loose materials that could fall on people
  • Wild animals that could bite or sting

If you are unsure of the safety of your home in Antioch, TN, call for help. Allow the authorities to identify and clear out safety hazards before reentering your property.

Water Damage Cleanup
Any flooding event will likely require the services of an experienced storm remediation team. A team of trained technicians can arrive on-site in a matter of hours and will quickly follow a process that is adaptable to all forms of disasters. It begins with an inspection and assessment of the flood damage and then moves onto a plan of action. Water removal and extraction begins at once, followed by a drying and ventilation process. The next actions include cleaning and sanitizing of all affected surfaces in the home. Depending on the damage, restoration services could include the repair of damaged walls, flooring, and contents.

Storm Restoration and Recovery
A home that is restored according to the highest standards of the cleaning and restoration industry should appear "Like it never even happened." This includes the elimination of odors associated with flooding and the removal of all hazards from the home. An efficient process works to keep expenses low and a restore versus replace philosophy also works to lower costs. A big storm or a heavy flood can be handled by following a few smart steps.

How To Protect Income After a Disaster

4/21/2020 (Permalink)

Close-up of mature couple doing finances Interruption insurance helps you bridge the gap by paying your company for lost income

How To Protect Income After a Disaster

The wise business person knows that the next disaster is always lurking on the horizon. The world is full of potential disruptions. It could come in the form of a business fire, a severe storm, a sudden flood or something completely unexpected. Preparation comes in many forms and what you do as a business owner could make the difference between surviving a big event or having to close down your company. The role of interruption insurance provides significant protections for your company in a time of turmoil. Its primary purpose is to pay out the income you lose while your company is closed for repairs.

The Danger of Fire
Commercial fires happen everyday in the U.S. A commercial insurance policy normally covers damages from a fire, but this still leaves you without any revenue while you are in the midst of a business interruption. While purchasing interruption insurance is an important decision for all businesses, the following business interests face a potentially greater risk of fire danger:

  • Restaurants
  • Manufacturing plants
  • Fireworks retailers
  • Merchants

A company that stores flammable or combustible materials is also at risk, as is a company that is located in a fire risk zone. The number one cause of business fires continues to be an electrical malfunction of equipment.

The Importance of a Fast Response
A fire is an emergency situation and a quick response from the fire department in Smith Springs, TN, can limit losses and save lives. Fire alarms and a sprinkler system can also speed up recovery efforts. A local fire mitigation company can arrive on the scene quickly and begin fire restoration services. Professional efforts have the capability to shorten the period of time between when a fire happens and when your business can reopen. Interruption insurance helps you bridge the gap by paying your company for lost income. This coverage could be a lifesaver during a difficult time.

3 Things You Can Do To Prepare for a Flood

4/12/2020 (Permalink)

Water barrier of sand bag to prevent flood Add sand bags to the perimeter

Three Things You Can Do To Help Avoid This Chaos

As a business owner in Nashboro Village, TN, you're aware that flooding can grind your work to a halt. After all, what you need is drenched, preventing you from tackling tasks. As the news warns of impending storms, then, it's best to consider ways to keep your company and staff protected. Here are three things you can do to help avoid this chaos.

1. Seal and Border Low Areas

Minimize flood damage by filling in small cracks and establishing a structural barrier. Walk around inside and outside, particularly noting areas around windows, door frames, and the lower wall. Anything, even minor, should be re-caulked, preventing moisture from squeezing through. Then, you can add sand bags to the perimeter, hoping to avert water elsewhere. When doing this, consider placing a plastic lining underneath. Then, layout the bags much like you would bricks, overlapping them to offer a stronger seal. Make sure the flaps are down.

2. Rearrange the Inside

As flooding enters, it will affect the materials inside. Therefore, shift valuables to higher ground. Look around the building. Where would provide the most secure location? You should particularly relocate electronics, expensive merchandise, and necessary files. Cloth items such as rugs and curtains easily absorb moisture. Remove them.

3. Shut Down Utilities

If storm damage occurs, your power supply could worsen the situation; thus, turning off the gas and electricity could alleviate undesirable stress and destruction. As fluid overtakes the rooms, it could hit the electrical lines and become a catalyst for fire. Before leaving the property, have a plan in place to lesson this event. When everything calms down and you return to the premises, don't go alone. Contact a water restoration company in Nashboro Village, TN, to come with you. The professionals can ensure the property is safe. Should a hazard exist, the professionals can begin to work on it immediately.
When flooding impacts your place, it's devastating. Structure is compromised. Business stops. Take action early to try and ward off trouble.

How To Identify and Address Black Mold in Your Home

3/27/2020 (Permalink)

Black mold Black mold can be particularly dangerous

How To Identify and Address Black Mold in Your Home

You have probably heard horror stories about what happens to homes with mold damage. Mold can cause a lot of harm in a short period of time. That is why you must be proactive and perform a mold inspection of your Nashville, TN, house.
Of course, in order to do a proper inspection, you have to know what mold looks like. Mold actually comes in many different shapes and sizes. Some mold is bumpy or hairy, while other mold appears flat. Mold can also be in several different colors, including:

  • White
  • Green
  • Yellow
  • Orange
  • Black
  • Blue

Black mold can be particularly dangerous. You should thus check for this particular type of mold during your inspection.

Identifying Black Mold

Despite its name, this mold is not always black. It can also be grey or dark green. It additionally features a musty odor that makes it easier to find during a mold inspection.
It is also important to note that this kind of mold thrives in wet areas. This mold is thus usually found near moisture.

Next Steps

Mold plays an important role in nature. It helps break down organic matter such as fallen trees and dead leaves.
However, once inside your home, mold can colonize and contaminate your belongings. If you do find mold during your inspection, you should address it right away.
The house mold will continue to spread until you eliminate the conditions that are causing it to grow. That usually requires reducing the humidity or removing excess water. Larger infestations may also require the assistance of mold remediation professionals.
Once you see or smell mold in your home, you should perform an initial mold inspection to determine the extent of the problem. If you believe the issue is severe, contact an environmental hygienist who can accurately test for the fungus. You can then decide whether you need black mold cleanup specialists.

We are Cleaning Experts

3/20/2020 (Permalink)

Hand with glove spraying cleaner We can help sanitize residential and commercial properties.

SERVPRO is Here to Help during this time of need 

During this unprecedented time caused by the global pandemic of coronavirus, this is a reminder to our customers that we are specialists in cleaning services, and we adhere to the highest cleaning and sanitation standards. 

Specialized Training 

We are prepared to clean and disinfect your home or business, according to protocols set forth by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. We have years of experience in dealing with biological contaminants, and we will go beyond the scope of work that regular janitorial staff perform on a daily basis. 

The CDC encourages cleaning of high-touch surfaces such as counters, tabletops, doorknobs, light switches, bathroom fixtures, toilets, phones, keyboards, tablets and tables. Other spaces mentioned in the CDC’s guidance for commercial spaces include: 

  • Kitchen/Food Areas 
  • Bathrooms 
  • Schools/Classrooms 
  • Offices 
  • Retail Spaces 
  • Water Fountains 
  • Shelving/Racks 
  • Sales Counters 
  • Carpets and Rugs 
  • Stair Handrails 
  • Elevator Cars 
  • Playground Equipment 
  • Fitness Equipment 

Specialized Products 

The CDC recommends usage of a labeled hospital-grade disinfectant with claims against similar pathogens to the coronavirus. Multiple products in the SERVPRO product line carry the EPA-approved emerging pathogens claims. While there is currently no product tested against this particular strain of the coronavirus, we are following all guidelines as provided by the CDC and local authorities. 

Call Today for a Proactive Cleaning 

If your home or business needs deep cleaning services, call the experts today – SERVPRO of Southeast Nashville, (615) 731-4222

The Impressive Power of a Hail Storm

3/9/2020 (Permalink)

Hail on roof Hail storm in Percy Priest, TN

Fortunately, hail storms don't come along very often. They require a precise sequence of weather patterns—an unstable air mass and a steep temperature gradient, for starters—that happens more frequently than a blue moon but less often than a regular thunderstorm. If you are like most people, you probably remember most of the hail storms you have witnessed. They are notorious for causing damage to cars, boats, windows and siding. A powerful hail storm also can cause roof damage, especially if the pieces of hail are large. As hail stones forcefully bombard the roof of your building it is not unusual to see shingle damage in the form of cracked or missing shingles.

Dealing With Hail Damage

If your company in Percy Priest, TN, faces an onslaught of hail stones, the roof might not be the only problem you face. Along with roof damage comes water damage in the following forms:

  • Water in the attic
  • Wet insulation and walls
  • Wet electronic components
  • Mold growth throughout the building

After a big storm it is always essential to shore up your roof with repairs. This could come in the form of damaged shingles, battered gutters and missing chimney caps. A roofing contractor will make sure the roof is capable of keeping water from rain, snow, ice or hail.

Taking Care of Water Damage
If water penetrates your building envelop, it's critical to eliminate any excess moisture in your building. A professional storm mitigation company in your area will have the resources and training to dry out your building and its contents. This task requires powerful fans, wet vacuums and air dryers to remove any standing water as well the moisture in furniture, paper documents, and clothing. Electrical systems may be compromised and need expert attention. If the roof damage to your building is extreme it is possible board up and tarp services will be needed to secure your building from additional storms.

Water Damage Contamination Levels

2/20/2020 (Permalink)

Blue background of water with the words WATER CATEGORIES in the middle Water categories

Here Is a Breakdown of The Three Categories

When water infiltrates a home, it can cause significant damage. If your Hickory Hollow, TN, home has been damaged because of a flood or a broken pipe, your actions will depend on the toxicity level of the contaminated water. This will help you make informed decisions about how to proceed.
The toxicity level depends on the source of the offending water. A broken water supply line causes much less contamination risk than floodwater or sewage. Here is a breakdown of the three categories:

Category 1

This low-toxicity level is also known as “clean water” or water that has come from clean sources. Here are some examples:

  • A leaking appliance water line
  • A broken clean water pipe
  • A leaky water heater
  • Overflowing clean water from a bathtub or shower
  • Rainwater leaking in from above ground

Your conventional homeowner’s insurance policy will generally cover damage caused by contaminated water at this low level. Your agent can outline your coverage and initiate a claim.

Category 2

This moderately toxic level of water contamination is referred to as “gray water.” It may contain small amounts of food, soil or grease. Water leaking from the drain of a shower, washing machine, sink or dishwasher is considered gray water. This level of damage is likely to be covered by your homeowner’s insurance.

Category 3

“Black water” is the name for this highly contaminated category. Common sources include seawater, sewage, groundwater or floodwater. It is not recommended that you do the cleanup yourself if you have Category 3 damage. The contaminated water may contain toxic chemicals, sewage, and physical hazards. The best strategy is to consult an emergency water remediation specialist to assess your damage and supervise the safe cleanup process.
If you experience floodwater damage, you would need to have purchased a specialized flood policy prior to the damage in order to be covered. Your insurance agent can help you determine whether you need this type of policy.
A home water-damage event can be unnerving and costly. Once you have discerned whether you have clean, gray or black water, you can get the cleanup going and begin moving your home and family back to normalcy.

Franchises Provide Local Services

1/30/2020 (Permalink)

SERVPRO van and a truck parked in front of a commercial, arrived for restoration purposes Professional restoration in Antioch, TN

When your property in Antioch, TN, needs immediate help due to storm, water, fire or other damage, you want the best service possible, as well as peace of mind that you are getting hometown help. Contacting a locally owned SERVPRO franchise ensures both. Local franchise owners are part of your community, as well as certified and trained to handle any disaster.

Trust the Facts

Getting your property back to pristine shape is a top priority. To make that happen, you need a trusted restoration expert that is always available and provides top-notch personal service. The local service you get is backed by a franchise model that has continued to top the list of restoration services by established publications for more than 15 years. When you choose SERVPRO, our proven track record can help ease your mind.

Offering coverage in 48 states, we have more than 1,700 franchises.
Along with helping with individual disasters, we also are a leader in large-loss disasters, such as flooding and hurricanes.
Established relationships with major insurance providers ensure smoother claims and restoration services.
Local owners and their employees receive nationally and locally accredited training and maintain certification for all areas of property restoration.

Always Available to Help

Contacting a SERVPRO franchise for your disaster means you get fast, 24/7 service. Our highly trained professionals are Faster to any size disaster. From mold mediation to smoke damage to general cleaning, we offer a host of services with a personal touch. We work with the individual and insurance companies to ensure repairs are done right and in the most cost-efficient manner. Incorporating the latest technology for both our physical services and the paperwork behind it, our electronic claims service provides instant access to all the documentation associated with every claim.
Ideally, a disaster will never happen. When it does, you can have confidence that a local SERVPRO franchise will make it “Like it never even happened.”

SERVPRO Holiday Safety Tips

12/11/2019 (Permalink)

The holidays are a wonderful time for traditions, family, and fun. While you’re decking the halls, cooking delicious feasts, and enjoying the warm glow of holiday lights, don’t forget to go through our SERVPRO Holiday Home Safety Checklist. Taking a few extra precautions will keep you and your home safe and prevent many common holiday season accidents. 

1 Hang your lights with care!

Inspect indoor and outdoor electrical outlets before you use them. Cracked or damaged sockets, exposed or loose wires and other issues can cause a shock, electrocution, or even start a fire. 

Don’t forget to inspect the cords on your lights and other electrical decorations as you put them up. Frayed cables can easily cause a fire. Also, make sure there is a bulb in each socket. Replace any damaged light strands each season. 

Do your Christmas lights have a holographic UL label? This means they passed strict safety tests at Underwriters Lab, a third-party safety testing facility. A red label indicates the lights are safe for indoor and outdoor use, a green label means they are only safe for indoor use. 

Holiday decoration and Christmas tree fires are often more damaging than other types of house fires. One easy way to prevent electrical fires is to use light clips to attach the holiday lights to your house instead of tacks or nails. Never hammer anything into an electrical cord. 

Only use extension cords that are designated for outdoor use for external lights and decorations. A simple rule of thumb to avoid overloading your extension cords is to plug no more than three sets of light strands into each extension cord. The best practice is to plug outdoor lights, inflatables, and other decorations into circuits that have ground fault circuit interrupters (GFCI). This type of outlet will turn off if there is an overcurrent. 

Don’t forget your indoor light safety, too! Keep your indoor lights and electrical decorations away from furniture, carpeting, drapes, and other potentially flammable materials. Check the cords and extension cords before you plug them in. Keep the cords and decorations tucked away to prevent tripping, but make sure they aren’t crushed, kinked, or twisted.

2 “Candle, candle, burning bright…” Candle safety

December is the peak month for candle-related house fires.The Red Cross reports that holiday fires cause more than $554 million in property damage every year! Candles are responsible for an average of 22 reported fires each day during the holiday season. Many candle fires begin in the living room and dining room. 

The safest way to enjoy the look and smell of candles is to use flameless candles around your home. If you do decide to use real candles, keep them at least 12 inches away from anything that can melt or burn. Place them in sturdy candleholders that won’t easily tip over or spill hot wax. 

Be careful of loose clothing, hair, flowing decorations, and other flammable items. Never light candles if someone is using an oxygen tank in the home. 

Make sure you blow out all the candles when you leave the room. Avoid using candles in the bedroom or during times when you might doze off and don’t allow the candle to burn all the way down to the holder or container. 

3 “Oh Christmas tree, Oh Christmas tree…” Tree safety

Did you know that Christmas tree-related accidents result in an average $13 million annually in property damage? A dry Christmas tree, electric lights, and various heat sources can be a dangerous combination. 

Fresh trees are less prone to fire than dry Christmas trees. Choose a Christmas tree that has healthy, green needles that are a little difficult to pull off. Stay away from trees that are browning or “shedding” needles. 

Before you put up the tree, cut about half an inch off the trunk to help it absorb water. Use a tree stand that holds at least a gallon of water and keep the bottom two inches of the trunk submerged in water.

Place your tree away from radiators, fireplaces, heat vents, candles, and other heat sources. Live Christmas trees do better in cool temperatures, so turn down the heat a little and consider putting your tree close to the window or door. 

To avoid electrical fires, only use Christmas lights that have the UL or ETL/ITSNA safety seal. Don’t use any damaged light strands. 

Don’t forget to unplug the Christmas lights before you head to bed, even if you have a fake tree! Whether you turn everything off yourself or use light timers, this will keep your home safer, lower your electric bill, and give you peace of mind. 

4 Cook with caution

Cooking equipment is the leading cause of reported home fires. Thanksgiving and Christmas are two days with the highest reported kitchen fires. 

Many people enjoy baking and cooking special meals and treats during the holiday season. It’s easy to get distracted or take unnecessary risks while cooking your festive feast. 

Prevent stove fires by making sure your oven and stovetop are clean before you start cooking. Don’t forget to clean the exhaust hood and duct over your stove regularly to prevent dust, dirt, and grease build-up. 

Make sure you plug appliances into Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter (GFCI) outlets to prevent electrical shock and other issues. Keep all electrical cords away from the sink and hot surfaces. Don’t forget to unplug everything when you are finished. 

As tempting as it might be, never disable your smoke detector. Many people unplug or disable their smoke alarms while cooking, but this is a dangerous practice, and it’s easy to forget to turn the smoke alarm back on. 

Make sure you have a fire extinguisher handy in the event you have a small kitchen fire. Make sure you know how to put out cooking fires, especially grease fires! Speaking of deep frying, if you plan to deep-fry your turkey, keep the deep fryer at least ten feet away from your home and deck

Did you know that dull knives are more dangerous than sharp knives? Sharpen your cutlery before the holiday cooking frenzy to keep your fingers a little safer. 

5. Baby-proof your home

If you plan to have holiday guests with small children (or even pets), you can help everyone stay safe and rest a little easier by baby-proofing your home. Move cleaning products to higher shelves or lock those cabinets. Zip ties make easy, affordable temporary baby locks on cabinets. 

Cover all the outlets with safety plugs, and keep decorations with small pieces out of reach of curious fingers. 

Take extra safety precautions in the kitchen if little ones are around. Angle all the pot handles on the stove or countertop back toward the wall, so they aren’t easily grabbed, knocked, or pulled over (this is a good safety practice at all times). 

To check the “baby-proof” status of your home, get down on your hands and knees, and look around your home from a curious little kid’s perspective. Move hazardous items out of reach or into other parts of your home. 

6 Have an emergency plan

Fires and other home emergencies occur more frequently during the holidays. It’s critical to have an evacuation and response plan ready for your family. Now is a great time to either review your emergency plan or create a new one.

Make sure everyone knows how to evacuate your home in the event of a fire. Identify a safe place where everyone will gather if you do need to evacuate your home. Don’t forget to include your pets in the emergency plan!

SERVPRO is here to help with any type of disaster, from cooking and Christmas tree fires to frozen pipes and other winter home accidents. Our expert technicians are available 24/7 to respond to any size disaster, even during the holidays!

Preventing Winter Storm Damage Around Commercial Properties

11/19/2019 (Permalink)

Cars driving on snowy road during a snow storm Snow and Ice can cause all sorts of damage to your property if not taken care of correctly.

Winter is on the way, bringing freezing temperatures, ice storms, snow, and other winter storms. From frozen pipes to roof leaks, there are many ways winter weather can take its toll on your commercial property. 

SERVPRO technicians are experts at helping businesses and homeowners recover from winter storm damage. However, with some preventative work, you can prepare your business for winter and avoid costly damages. Here are some practical ways to prepare for winter storms. 

Common Types of Commercial Property Damage From Winter Storms

Understanding the common types of winter storm damage can help you prevent damage to your own commercial property. 

Roof damage

Ice and snow are heavy and can cause the roof to buckle under the weight. Many commercial properties have flat roofs that are at higher risk of collapsing during a winter storm than other types of roofs. 

Roof leaks are more common than collapsed roofs. Leaks are often caused by ice dams. Ice dams form when a ridge of ice develops along the edge of the roof, preventing the melting snow and ice from draining correctly. The water has nowhere to go, and it leaks down through the roof and into your building. 

Leaking roofs can cause all kinds of costly property damage and can lead to other hazardous issues like mold, mildew, and weakened building structures. 

Frozen pipes

When the temperatures fall below freezing, there’s a chance the water pipes can freeze. When pipes freeze, the water expands and can cause the pipes to burst, leading to flooding and expensive water damage. 

Don’t forget about your sprinkler systems, too! When the temperatures drop below freezing, your fire protection pipes can freeze and burst as well. 

Ice damage

Ice is heavy! One inch of ice weighs about the same as a foot of snow (about 5 pounds per square foot). This is a lot of extra weight to put on canopies, loading docks, tree branches, and other things that can collapse and cause severe injury or damage. 

Preventing Winter Storm Damage

It’s better to prepare for winter ahead of time than to try to get everything done quickly before a looming storm. Before the temperature drops, be sure you get your property ready for winter.

Prepare for snow removal early

Having a plan in place for snow removal saves you a lot of hassle when winter weather decides to strike. Check the condition of your snow shovel, snowblower, or other snow removal tools. If you are using a snowblower, make sure it runs properly, and you have enough fuel, so you aren’t caught off-guard. 

If you do not plan to remove snow from your commercial property yourself, you’ll need to hire a snow contractor early. Make sure you clarify what areas they will treat (walkways, driveways, parking lots, loading docks, etc.).

Ice removal

Businesses need to keep rock salt or ice melt on hand to prevent injuries from slipping and falling. There are many types of ice melts on the market, and it can be confusing to choose one that works best in your area (each ice melt product is designed for a specific temperature range).

The most basic guideline for choosing the right ice melt product is this: if the temperature in your area is 5 degrees F or warmer, regular rock salt is an excellent choice; if you expect temperatures to fall below 5 degrees F, choose a salt blend product that includes calcium chloride. 

Prepare for power outages

Winter power outages usually happen when cars slide into telephone poles or falling trees knock down power lines. Make sure your pipes are appropriately insulated to prevent them from freezing if the power (and heat) goes out. 

Make sure you have flashlights, extra batteries, and other emergency supplies on hand. Check your backup generator in the fall to ensure it is in good working order. Also, check the backup batteries in any security systems, fire alarms, and other systems that primarily rely on electricity.

Winterize your landscape and address drainage issues

Even in winter, poor drainage can cause significant problems. Frozen patches can lead to dangerous, slippery spots for visitors, and oversaturated areas can cause your grass or landscaping to die.

Ensure your gutters, drain pipes, and other drainage systems are clear and in good condition to prevent ice dams from forming. Ice dams are easy to avoid, but they can cause extensive water damage. 

Trim trees and shrubs to reduce the risk of branches breaking and falling under the weight of ice or snow. Also, ensure the grading around your building is slowing away to avoid water and ice accumulating next to the foundation. This can cause serious water damage. 

Prepare your roof

Inspect your roof each fall. Look for loose shingles, damage to the flashing, or places where water is pooling. Also, assess the condition of the insulation in your attic area. Increasing the insulation in the attic can reduce heat costs and help prevent ice dams from causing water damage. 

Inspect the windows and doors

Inspect all the windows and doors to ensure the seals are in good condition. Replace old windows or doors as necessary. This helps reduce energy costs and prevents moisture from building up around the windows. Excess moisture can lead to property damage, mold, and mildew. 

Prepare your pipes

Avoid frozen or burst pipes by wrapping and insulating the pipes, and sealing cracks and openings around exposed pipes. Keep your thermostats indoors above 55 degrees F to prevent the pipes from freezing. Inspect the insulation around pipes each fall to make sure it is still in good condition. 

Despite your best efforts, sometimes the pipes freeze. Early season storms can catch people by surprise, the pipes may get caught in a freezing draft (especially in older buildings), or you might not turn the heat on early or long enough. If you don’t clean the frozen pipes up right away, it can lead to more property damage and other issues, like mold and mildew. 

Keep A SERVPRO Restoration Expert On Speed Dial

No matter what season it is, commercial property owners and managers should keep a SERVPRO restoration expert on speed dial. If you have an issue with frozen pipes, roof damage, or other issues caused by Mother Nature (or anything else), we will restore everything as quickly as possible so your business can get back to normal. 

We are available 24/7 to respond to any type or size of commercial property damage, and our mission is to make it "like it never even happened.” Contact us today to learn more about our commercial property services. 

SERVPRO Preventing Storm Damage To Commercial Properties

11/4/2019 (Permalink)

Severe storms can bring strong winds, heavy rain, hail, and even flooding. There is never a good time for your business to experience storm damage. It’s inconvenient, frustrating, and costly. 

No matter how severe the storm damage, SERVPRO technicians are restoration experts. We will be there fast to get your business up and running as quickly as possible. Here are some practical tips to prevent storm damage to your business or commercial property. 

Preventing wind and hail damage

Strong winds can damage your commercial property in a matter of minutes. It’s difficult to predict what kind of damage a storm can do ahead of time, but there are a few steps you can take to prevent property damage. 

Inspect your roof, exterior walls, and doors

Before and after major storms, inspect your roof, walls, and doors. Move from top to bottom to make sure you don’t miss anything.  

Start by inspecting the roof. Make sure all the shingles fit together correctly and are firmly nailed down. While it isn’t required, it’s a good idea to ensure your roofing is highly rated for wind and impact resistance. 

Make sure skylights and pipes are correctly sealed to prevent water damage inside the building. Regularly inspect the sheathing and connection between the roof and walls. Everything should be tightly nailed down and strong enough to withstand updrafts that can lift the roof off the building in very severe storms. 

Next, inspect the exterior walls, windows, and doors of your commercial building. Ensure the siding is firmly attached, and windows are properly sealed. For the best protection in strong windstorms, make sure all your exterior doors have triple hinges and a deadbolt lock. Install braces on any overhead doors that will withstand high winds. 

Consider installing impact-resistant glass in your windows. Impact-resistant glass prevents shattering and provides an extra layer of protection against severe wind and hail. 

Prepare your outdoor areas

Make sure any storage sheds and outbuildings are secure. Inspect their roofing, windows, siding, and doors. Securely anchor all the outbuildings if you are expecting particularly severe storms and high winds.

Check your outdoor signage, light fixtures, fences, and dumpsters. Move any equipment and inventory to safe places and anchor anything that you plan to leave outdoors. Even large, heavy items can become projectiles in strong winds. Ask your property insurance agent if you need any special endorsements to cover your signs and outbuildings.

Keep large trees and shrubs around your building pruned and healthy. Unpruned trees and landscaping can cause severe property damage. Remove unhealthy branches that are likely to fall or break in a storm. Also, remove branches that grow across each other or touch each other. Make sure trees and shrubs are not too thick, preventing the wind from blowing through or around harmlessly. 

Protect your vehicle fleet

If you own company vehicles, never park them under a tree during a severe storm. The safest place to park vehicles during a severe storm is in a garage or storage building. If that’s not possible, park your cars safely away from things that could cause damage, like branches, lampposts, and power lines. 

Preventing flood and water damage

Flooding is one of the most common and expensive weather-related disasters in the United States. Your disaster preparedness plan should outline what to do in the event of a flood. There are also steps you can take to prevent flood damage to your business. 

Clean and prep outdoor areas

Keep your gutters, downspouts, and drainage systems clean to prevent water from pooling or backing up into your building. Add extensions to downspouts to move water far away from the foundation.

Observe how water pools or moves around your property. The grading and landscaping should help water drain away from buildings. Help direct water away from your building by adding soil to low areas and adding drainage pipes where necessary. 

Check your foundation and basement

Inspect your foundation for cracks and gaps where storm water can get into your building. If you have a basement, make sure there are no cracks in the walls and ensure your sump pump is working correctly.

Elevate exposed equipment and property

Air conditioning units, fuel tanks, inventory, and inventory you store outdoors should be elevated and securely anchored.

Prevent ice damming

During winter storms, ice dams can form when the attic warms the roof, which melts the snow and causes water to drip toward the eaves. When the water re-freezes, it creates an ice dam, causing water to back up under the shingles and soak through the roof and walls. 

The easiest way to prevent ice dams is to minimize heat escaping through the ceiling with proper insulation. Make sure attic spaces have enough ventilation to draw out excess heat. Make sure your roof has waterproofing shingle underlayment that helps prevent water from leaking in.

No matter what kind of storm damage your home or commercial property might incur, SERVPRO technicians are equipped to get you back up and running as quickly as possible. We are standing by 24 hours a day to respond to any size disaster. Contact us today to learn more about our commercial restoration services. 

Commercial Fire And Water Damage Prevention Tips

10/5/2019 (Permalink)

No matter what kind of commercial building you have, fire and water damage are a risk for businesses all over the country. Many events that cause significant damage to commercial buildings can be avoided by taking simple preventative measures.

Having quality fire and water damage prevention is the best and cheapest defense. SERVPRO would rather help you avoid an incident, but our commercial restoration team is standing by to help you recover quickly. 

Here are some simple steps to prevent fire and water damage to your commercial building.

Keep your fire protection equipment up to date.

When was the last time you checked the expiration date on your multipurpose extinguishers? Do all your employees know where each fire extinguisher is around your building? Have you checked to ensure your smoke detectors are in good working order? Is your emergency kit supplied with items like a flashlight, bottled water, and first aid kit? Many businesses also include fire escape masks to prevent smoke inhalation in the event of a fire. 

Many local governments offer to have a visit from the fire marshall to conduct workplace fire risk assessments and help you create a fire prevention plan. This is an excellent tool for lowering your risk of fire damage.  

Protect your building from accidental or intentional fires

The US fire departments respond to more than 3,000 office property fires each year. Most fires are caused by human error, like leaving a coffee pot on, burning food in the kitchen, or spilling liquids on electrical equipment. 

Fires that occur between 3 pm and 12 am are usually the most damaging because fewer people are around to catch it early. Keep dumpsters away from the building and empty trash cans inside your building every day to prevent smoldering papers or things from becoming a full-fledged fire. 

Keep the trees and bushes around your building trimmed. If you have security cameras or motion sensor lights, it is essential to have a clear line of sight around your property. This will make it easier to spot problems or suspicious activity.

Keeping your HVAC and electrical systems maintained is key to fire prevention and safety. About 9% of commercial fires happen because HVAC systems and other appliances malfunction. Have your heating systems and other appliances inspected regularly, especially before the winter months when your heating systems will be working overtime. Ensure the smoke detectors in utility and storage rooms work correctly.

No smoking policies can dramatically reduce the risk of fire around your commercial property. Cigars, cigarettes, and other smoking materials cause about 9% of fires in office properties. Make sure your employees know and abide by the smoking rules. Provide safe ways to dispose of cigarettes in all the designated smoking areas to reduce the risk of fire. 

Prevent commercial water damage with regular inspections.

When was the last time the roof, plumbing, and electrical systems in your commercial building were inspected by a professional? Sinks, toilets, and leaking roofs are common causes of water damage in commercial properties. 

An easy and effective way to prevent expensive water damage is to have your facility inspected regularly. Air conditioners, water heaters, water pipes, and other plumbing can develop leaks, cracks, and weak areas over time. It’s essential to catch problems early instead of waiting until they cause thousands of dollars of damage. 

Old toilets usually have weak water pressure, which can lead to more clogs. If the toilets clog frequently, it can cause damage to the pipes and lead to black water flooding. Newer toilets are more efficient and effective. Consider replacing old toilets and plumbing before there is an issue.  

Have the sprinkler systems inspected to prevent leaks and malfunctions. Sprinkler systems are excellent at minimizing fire damage, but if the pipes leak, they can cause severe water damage. 

Inspect your roof frequently. Look for damage to the perimeter flashing or areas where water is not draining correctly. Make sure the gutters and drain pipes are clean, especially before any major storms to prevent your roof from leaking. 

Consider installing water leak detection sensors that will send an alert if there is a leak. These are especially useful around water heaters ice and beverage machines, and other utilities that have the potential to cause serious damage if they malfunction. 

Perform Risk Assessments

A risk assessment is a careful inspection of your property and work habits to look for things that could cause damage to people or property. Many companies perform risk assessments for you, or you can designate a person in your organization to receive risk assessment training

The benefit of conducting regular risk assessments is that you are aware of the vulnerabilities and threats to your property so you can take steps to prevent accidents. It is always better to be proactive than reactive. 

Develop an Emergency Readiness Plan

Use the SERVPRO Emergency READY Program (ERP) to prepare for disaster ahead of time. A SERVPRO disaster recovery specialist will assess your business and help you create an emergency READY profile for your building and property. 

The ERP profile includes critical information about your business, like emergency contact information, locations for all your shut-off valves, and other vital details that you, your employees, and the emergency response team will need to know in the event of a disaster. 

Having this information in one place will help you and the SERVPRO team respond quickly and effectively to minimize damage in an accident or disaster. There is even a Smartphone app with access to your plan from anywhere, 24/7. 

SERVPRO specializes in commercial property restoration from any disaster. Our technicians will clean and repair your business quickly, so you can get back to serving your customers. Contact us today to set up an Emergency READY program for your business.

Seven Ways To Prevent Mold

8/21/2019 (Permalink)

It's impossible to create a mold-proof home because mold is all around us. Most of the time, we live peacefully with mold spores all around us. But, if the spores find a damp environment with organic matter to feed on, they can quickly grow into a mold colony. Then, it's only a matter of time before the mold begins to spread. Once that happens, it can be challenging to eradicate.

Mold serves an essential purpose in the environment. It helps break down organic material like leaves and dead plants. They also help create useful things like cheese and penicillin. At the same time, mold can cause serious health issues for people.

You cannot mold-proof your home, and SERVPRO would rather help you prevent mold from invading than wait until there is a mold problem to intervene. There are some easy steps you can take to make your home mold-resistant to avoid the hassle and cost of mold remediation. Here are ten easy ways to create a mold-resistant home.

Seven Ways To Prevent Mold

Prevent Mold and Mildew in the Bathroom

The bathroom is one of the most vulnerable rooms in your home because of all the moisture and humidity. Make sure you have a functioning exhaust fan to remove moisture more quickly and circulate the air.

Mildew and mold can grow easily on fabrics. Spread out damp towels after you use them to help them dry more quickly. Wipe down or squeegee the shower after each use. Also, choose shower curtains that dry quickly and clean easily so that soap residue doesn't build up. Soap scum can foster mold growth.

Ventilate Well

Ventilation is vital for your home. New homes are more energy-efficient, preventing air leakage, which saves money but can allow moisture to build up inside your home. Routine activities like cooking dinner, showering, and doing laundry can encourage mold to grow in your house.

Make sure your kitchen, laundry room, and other high-moisture areas are well ventilated. Add vents to the outside (not the attic) to appliances like clothes dryers and stoves. Use air conditioners and dehumidifiers to control the moisture levels in your house, especially in humid climates.

Open doors between rooms and move furniture away from the walls to increase circulation around your home. Open your windows on beautiful days with low humidity to let in the fresh air.

Keep Mold Off Your Houseplants

Plants are beautiful and improve the air quality in your home, but the moist soil around the houseplants are the perfect breeding ground for mold colonies. Don't get rid of your beautiful plants! Add a little Taheebo tea to the water when you water them. Taheebo tree oil is resistant to fungi, even in the humid, damp rainforests, and it helps prevent mold from growing in the plant soil. Taheebo tea is readily available in most natural food stores.

Monitor Moisture Levels

It is easy to monitor moisture levels in your home with a hygrometer. The EPA recommends keeping the humidity levels in your home between 30 and 60 percent.

You can also look for telltale signs that there is too much moisture in your home. Condensation on your windows, pipes, and walls is one of the most obvious symptoms of high moisture levels. Dry the surfaces immediately and turn off any humidifiers. Consider putting a dehumidifier in moisture-prone rooms.

Use a Properly Sized Air Conditioner

Make sure your air conditioning unit is the right size for the home and the climate. A central air conditioning unit might cool your home faster, but it won't remove the right amount of moisture from the air. If you live in a climate with high humidity, consider adding a dehumidifier to the central air conditioning system.

You can also raise the temperature in your home so the moisture doesn't build up and cause condensation.

It is also essential to have your air conditioner cleaned and ducts and regularly maintained, including the unit drip pans and drainage lines. Water collects in these dark areas, creating a perfect environment for mold to thrive.

Ventilate Crawl Spaces

Crawl spaces and basements are cool, damp, and dark--the ideal environment for mold colonies to grow. Make sure crawl spaces have the right amount of ventilation and lay down heavy-duty plastic sheeting over dirt to keep moisture from seeping up from the ground.

Clean and Maintain Your Gutters and Roof

One of the easiest ways to prevent rainwater from seeping into your home is to keep your gutters and roof cleaned and maintained. Make sure the gutters and downspouts aren't blocked with leaves and debris. The downspouts should move rainwater at least five feet away from the foundation of your house. This will help keep your basement and crawl spaces dry.

Cleaning Mold

It is important to clean mold properly and as quickly as possible to prevent it from spreading to other areas of your home.

How To Clean Mold and Mildew From Fabrics

It is essential to carefully take the fabric or upholstery outside if possible to prevent mold spores from spreading throughout your home. Once outside, brush as much of the mildew off as possible with a rag or gentle brush. Be sure to wear gloves and a mask to protect your skin and lungs.

Wash the fabric in chlorine bleach and hot water to kill the mildew. If that is not possible, soak the cloth in oxygen bleach and hot water for about 30 minutes, then wash as directed. It is also helpful to allow the fabric to dry in the sunlight.

Vacuum any upholstery that you cannot take outside, then immediately replace the vacuum bag or take the canister outside and clean it thoroughly to remove the mold spores. Mix 1 part ammonia and 1 part cold water and use a clean, white cloth to sponge the mold stains. Blot the stain until all of the solution is absorbed. Repeat the process until the stain is gone, then clean the area with cold water to remove the ammonia. Make sure the upholstery dries completely with a fan, hairdryer (set on cool), or dehumidifier.

How To Clean Mold From Wood

Cleaning small amounts of mold or mildew from wood surfaces is not as difficult as you might think. However, it is important to clean the area thoroughly to prevent it from spreading elsewhere around your home.

Create a solution of equal parts vinegar, soap, and warm water. Use a clean, soft rag to wipe away the mold or mildew. Make sure to scrub between cracks or joints as much as possible. Rinse the area with clean water and dry the wood thoroughly. Use a fan or dehumidifier to make sure there is enough ventilation in the area.

Contact SERVPRO

It is important to clean mold with the right methods and equipment to prevent the spores from spreading to other areas of your home. It's easy to clean small amounts of mold growing on hard surfaces with commercial mold and mildew removers. It is crucial to address the cause of the mold.

Because mold spores travel by air, SERVPRO technicians use technology like negative air chambers and HEPA air filters with "air scrubbers" to prevent the mold spores from spreading while they clean and disinfect the area. SERVPRO uses the following process to remediate mold:

  • Inspection and assessment: SERVPRO agents inspect your home for mold using a variety of technologies to detect unhealthy mold levels and hidden areas of moisture.
  • Containment: Depending on the extent of the mold contamination, SERVPRO agents will use things like negative air chambers to keep mold spores from spreading during the cleanup process. They usually turn off the heat and AC to keep mold spores from spreading through the air ducts.
  • Filtration: SERVPRO uses specialized air filtration equipment to clean spores out of the air. HEPA vacuums and "air scrubbers" help bring the mold spores down to normal levels.
  • Removing mold and damaged materials: Technicians remove all the mold-infested things like drywall, carpeting, insulation, and other materials from your home. Then, they use antimicrobial and antifungal treatments to kill any remaining mold and prevent new mold colonies from growing.
  • Cleaning your belongings: SERVPRO is committed to restoring as much as possible to its original condition, including your belongings like furniture, clothing, curtains, and decorative items. They use a variety of chemicals and cleaning techniques to sanitize everything and remove the moldy smell.
  • Restoration: The job isn't complete until the SERVPRO technicians make all the necessary repairs to return your home to its original condition.

If you find mold in your home, contact SERVPRO immediately. Technicians are available 24/7, and they are trained to handle all kinds of mold issues.

Preventing Water Damage While You’re On Vacation

8/5/2019 (Permalink)

Summer is finally here, and it’s time to head out for family vacations! Unfortunately, water damage is not just a winter concern. Even though you won’t have to worry about frozen pipes, many other things can cause water damage in your home during the hot summer months. 

Here are a few things you can do before you head off on vacation to prevent water damage while you are away. Remember, no matter what happens, SERVPRO is always standing by to help with any size disaster. 

Start outside

Begin by making sure all the rain gutters and downspouts are clean. Clogged gutters can allow water to pool on the roof or around the foundation of your home. 

While you are cleaning the gutters, check the roof for any loose shingles or damaged flashing that might let heavy rain to seep into your house. 

Next, inspect the windows and doors to make sure the seals are tight and the locks work properly. This helps prevent water damage and break-ins. Don’t forget to check and lock the pet door and garage door!

Check your water bill

There are hundreds of feet of water pipes snaking through the walls and floors of your house. Unfortunately, you can’t see them all to ensure there are no leaks. One way to catch leaks early is to keep an eye on your water bill. 

If you notice your bill increasing inexplicably or the amount of water consumed doesn’t seem to match previous months, there may be a leak somewhere. Be sure to take other factors into consideration, like hosting summer guests or watering the garden.

One way to keep an eye on your water consumption is to compare your bill for the current month to the bill for the same month one year ago. Unless there was a notable change, (more people live in your house, you added appliances, or the price of water has increased) there should not be a dramatic difference in the amount of water your household consumed. 

Check for leaks

Before you leave for vacation, check all the accessible places in your home for leaks. Look under all the sinks for signs of water damage and check the water heater for rusting or cracks. 

Ensure none of your faucets (inside or outside) leak or drip. Even small leaks can become big problems quickly, especially if it goes unnoticed for a week or two. 

Check all the water hoses in major appliances. Washing machines, refrigerator ice machines, and dishwashers use plastic hoses to connect to the water supplies. Make sure there aren’t any kinks, cracks, or leaks.

For an extra measure of defense, replace the standard plastic water hoses for more durable stainless steel hoses. This is a very cost-effective preventative measure against in-home water damage. 

Test your sump pump

Take the time to test your sump pump before you leave for summer vacation. Sump pumps help keep groundwater out of your basement.

Testing your sump pump is easy. Fill the sump pit with water and watch to make sure the pump activates and removes all the water. As it runs, make sure the motor is not making any strange sounds. 

If you haven’t already done so, consider installing a backup battery on your sump pump. This will keep your sump pump working even during a power outage!

Turn off your water heater

Not only will this prevent any potential water leaks, turning off your water heater while you are on an extended vacation helps save energy. If your water heater is well maintained, then there is little risk of having an issue, but it will give you peace of mind while you are relaxing at the beach. 

If you have a gas water heater, turn the thermostat up or to the “vacation” setting. If you have an electric water heater, simply turn the breaker off to save energy.

Turn off the water main

If there is nobody to check on your house while you are away, consider turning off the water main. If you are leaving for more than a week, turning off the water main prevents water pressure from building up in the pipes. 

If you have a clogged or weak area in your plumbing, turning off the water main will prevent the water pressure from building up and causing something to break while you are gone. 

After you turn the water main off, turn on all the faucets in your home to let the water drain out.

Have someone check your house

If your vacation plans take you away from home for more than a week, consider asking a neighbor or friend to check on your house every few days. This will give you peace of mind that nothing will go unnoticed for very long. 

Asking a trustworthy friend or neighbor to look after your home will give you peace of mind and ensure that any incidents are handled quickly. Leave your insurance and SERVPRO information in the unlikely event something goes wrong and your friend needs to call for help. 

Taking these easy steps before you leave for vacation will prevent water damage year-round and allow you to relax and thoroughly enjoy your holiday.

BONUS Two fire prevention steps

It is equally important to prevent fire damage while you are away on vacation. 

Unplug electronics: Before you leave, unplug all the electronic devices. Not only will this save electricity, but it also reduces the risk of an electrical fire. Don’t just disconnect cables from electronics; unplug the cords and power strips from the wall outlets. 

Check your smoke detectors: While you are checking for water leaks, make sure all your smoke detectors are in good working order. Consider installing smart smoke detectors that alert your home security system or send a notification to your phone if something goes wrong.

How to Restore Your Property After Fire Damage

7/3/2019 (Permalink)

How to Restore Your Property After Fire Damage

As a homeowner, there is no shortage of concerns to keep at the front of your mind. When a serious disaster such as a fire causes damage to your home, it's important to act quickly and correctly. Because dealing with fire damage is often a distressing event, it's crucial that you stay informed so that you know how to deal with a fire if one should occur. Follow our simple tips and you'll know what to do if you ever need to confront fire damage repair and restoration.



First and foremost, any homeowner who has had a fire should detail the scale and harm of any damage incurred. Cleaning the affected areas of any burned objects or ash can provide a clearer picture of what damage was caused to the home itself. It's a good idea to log everything and include detailed photographs of damage before you begin the restoration process. This way you have evidence to consult should you have a lapse in memory.



Next you should sort any undamaged items. The fire department should be able to limit damage if detection is able to provide a warning 10 to 15 minutes before of the end of the incipient stage, regardless of suppression system activation or the location of the fire. But every fire is different, and you can never be too certain. Always create a clear space so that damage is easily identifiable throughout the repair and restoration process. It's always prudent to contact your insurance company, as an experienced agent can explain the relevant points of your coverage policy. Additionally, your agent should have the resources to get you started on the repair and restoration process. 

As a related consequence, smoke damage should also be considered as you clean and document areas of the home affected by fire. Soot and smoke damage can be more difficult to identify and clean, as its properties are much more subtle and potentially evasive when compared to damage caused by flames. A significant portion of the restoration process is devoted to revealing smoke damage and restoring the property through the removal of odors and other unseen damages.



Once you've identified the scale and amount of damage, cleaned the space, and spoken to your insurance company to determine the coverage offered by your policy, you can move onto fire damage repair and restoration. It's wise to hire a trustworthy company that has lots of experience dealing with fire damage, as it is a specific field and hiring lackluster help will only lead to further problems down the road. A reputable company will be able to decide on a course of action. It's often nearly impossible for the average homeowner to determine whether it's best to restore or replace. For these reasons, a good fire damage repair and restoration service is there to guide you through the difficulties of handling fire damage in your property.

Preventing Storm Water Damage

7/1/2019 (Permalink)

Water damage is costly and often difficult to clean up. While SERVPRO is available 24/7 to respond to any water damage situation, we prefer that you not have water damage at all.

Here are eight steps you can take to prevent water damage from storms or flooding in your home or business. 

1. Clean your drainage systems regularly. 

This may seem simple and obvious, but clogged gutters and drain spouts allow water to pool around the foundation of your home or business. Make a habit of cleaning the gutters at least twice per year and inspect the drainage system. Replace or repair any cracked or damaged parts that might allow water to collect or leak near your home. 

If your property has drainage problems, consider installing a French drains system. They allow water to move away from your home or business via a ditch filled with gravel or rock and perforated pipes. This helps the water disburse over a wider area and prevent it from pooling near the foundation. 

2. Inspect your roof.

Schedule an annual roof inspection. It’s a good idea to have this done each spring to assess any damage done over the winter but before the big summer storms roll in. Catching any issues early will go a long way to prevent rain and wind damage.

3. Assess your landscaping.

A well-planned landscaping design will help guide water away from the foundation of your home or commercial building. Make sure the ground slopes away from the foundation. 

Experts recommend a slope of ¼ inch per foot going away from your home. This allows gravity to work in your favor, pulling the water away from the foundation. If necessary, add some fresh soil to make sure you have this grade.

During a small storm, go outside and observe how the water flows through your property. Note any areas where water is collecting or places where rainwater is running toward the foundation. If it would be helpful, mark the “problem” areas with little construction flags so you can address these landscaping issues later. 

4. Have sewers and septic systems checked. 

If the groundwater rises too high, it can impact the effectiveness of sewer and septic systems. In more extreme cases, it can lead to sewer backup or waste leeching to the surface or back into the house. Make sure these systems are inspected regularly.

5. Inspect your foundation.

The most common cause of basement flooding is cracks in the foundation that allow water to seep in during a storm. Have your basement and foundation inspected regularly and repair any cracks as quickly as possible. Some cracks can be repaired easily with caulking or similar products. 

Make sure any windows in your basement are in good shape. The wood frame around a window can rot or deteriorate over time, allowing water into the basement. Aluminum or vinyl windows tend to last longer than wood. 

6. Consider a sump pump.

If your basement or crawlspace floods regularly, consider installing a sump pump. These handy little gadgets are installed under the floor in your basement or crawl space to collect groundwater and redirect it away from your home before it can cause problems. 

If your crawl space or basement has belowground moisture, you should consider a sump pump as a “first line of defense” against flooding. The American Society of Home Inspectors says more than 60% of homes are prime candidates for sump pumps due to ground moisture. You should always have a sump pump if your home is located in a flood zone

If you have a sump pump, make sure to have it serviced to keep it running at tip-top shape. Make sure the back-up battery works, so the pump will continue running if you lose power. If your pump does not have a backup battery, many plumbers can easily install one.

7. Protect your products and information.

Whether you own a home or business, you have valuable property, products, and documents. Make sure critical paperwork is backed up electronically and store important documents in a waterproof file cabinet or safe that will protect them from fire, water, and smoke damage. 

Keep non-waterproof items above floor level or in waterproof containers to avoid potential water damage. Store valuable items on high, stable shelves or stacked wooden pallets. 

8. Check your trees.

Make sure there are no dead or diseased trees on your property. These trees may not be able to endure a major storm and come crashing down. Remove any precarious tree branches that might damage your home or power lines if they break. 

Even though most insurance policies cover damage from falling trees, prevention is far easier and safer. 

Preparing for a coming storm. 

If you know a major storm is looming, there are a few things you can do to prepare yourself and your property. 

Unplug it. 

If you know a major storm is on the way, unplug appliances or use surge protectors. This will protect your electronics and help prevent electrical fires. 

Secure outdoor areas. 

In strong winds, outdoor furniture can become dangerous flying objects. A strong gust of wind can toss a patio chair or even a grill, breaking a sliding glass door or causing some other damage. Bring outdoor furniture in and anchor heavy objects. 

If you live in a low-lying or flood-prone area, consider putting up floodgates, sandbags, tarps, and other “dry flood protection” materials. These will help keep floodwaters out of your home or business.

Take photos for the insurance company.

“Before” photos are very helpful in filing an insurance claim and throughout the recovery process. “Before and after” photos, video, and documents make it easier for agents to assess the full extent of the damage. 

Create an emergency response plan and kit. 

Whether you have a family and home or a business and commercial property, an emergency response plan allows everyone to know how to react in an emergency. 

Write down important phone numbers for family, friends, and important business contacts. Even if you have the numbers memorized, it’s helpful not to need to rely on your recall in a stressful situation. 

Pack an emergency supply kit that includes all the food, water, and supplies you might need to survive up to 72 hours on your own. Store your kit in an easy-to-carry container like a plastic bin or duffle bag, and make sure everyone knows where it is. 

Dealing with Water Damage in Your Home

6/17/2019 (Permalink)

A water emergency can happen at any time and often without warning. Recovering from a water emergency, and the water damage left behind can be overwhelming and scary, thankfully, there are plenty of ways for you to recover from such an event and restore your home.

A water emergency can be anything from your basement flooding due to a broken, cracked or clogged pipe, improper sealing on the flooring or walls, or debris in your gutters to a disaster-related event like flash flooding. In the last five years alone flash floods and floods, in general, have been experienced in all 50 states. It is becoming more and more common for homeowners to experience flooding related to natural disasters than in previous years. Since flooding and water emergencies are common, it is important to know how to deal with flood damage, water removal, and water cleanup to successfully restore your home after receiving water damages.

How to Deal with Water Damage and Water Removal

When a flood or water emergency impacts your home, there are many things to take into consideration. For example, water can contain mud, bacteria, sewage, and other toxins that can contaminate your floors and belongings. This is why it is important to deal with the water removal and water cleanup as soon as possible following a flood event. It is imperative to start the water removal process as soon as you can safely enter your home or access the flooded part of the building. The safest and quickest way to deal with water removal and the cleanup is to contact a professional. However, you can assist in the process by removing excess water. This can be done with the use of a mop or towels to soak up any of the remaining water. You can also bring in large fans to assist with drying the area out and removing any furniture or rugs from that area. Essentially, you want to remove any objects from the impacted area and place fans or turn on the air conditioning to assist in the process. You should also keep mold damage in mind as you start restoring your home.

Restoring Your Home after Water Damage

Once your home has dried out you will want to keep an eye out for mold. Mold infestations are common after flooding, and you can often identify them just by observing the area that was impacted and received water damage. Keeping the area cool and dry can help reduce the likelihood of a mold infestation, and the restoration process also helps with mold remediation. Here are a few things to keep in mind when restoring your home after water damage. The restoration process helps improve your living space by preventing mold and mildew; it also allows you to preserve your home’s value by cleaning and restoring the home quicker and often to a better state than it was previously. Many homeowners explore selling their homes after water damages, or flooding occurs, but many find this difficult due to the state of the home, which is why restoring it is a great option!

When your home suffers water damage, it can be difficult, and when it comes to water damage repair, it can be hard to know where to start. Finding a professional water damage repair and restoration business in your area can make a huge difference in recovering from water emergencies. The benefits include: stopping further damage; ensuring a proper cleanup; reducing your losses and saving you time and money.

What to do When Water Damage Happens

6/10/2019 (Permalink)

It’s horribly inconvenient to have your daily life disrupted by water damage. Whether it’s a pipe burst, a flood, a slow leak from the ice machine, or your little tyke decided to shove his favorite stuffie down the toilet, water damage can be costly and stressful. SERVPRO of Percy Priest / Hickory Hollow has experienced professionals who are equipped to help you deal with even the worst water damage in an organized, thorough manner.

We hope you never have to call us to restore water-damaged property; but if you do, this guide will help you understand the different classes of water damage, first steps to take, and what to expect during the cleanup process. 

What to do first when you find water damage

No matter how much water damage your home or business suffers, it’s important to act quickly and take the right steps to prevent further damage.

Before you do anything, make sure any water sources that may be leaking are turned off. You don’t want water to continue leaking, causing more damage. Next, turn off the electricity in the impacted area. Electrical shocks and similar accidents are surprisingly common in water damage situations because people are so concerned about addressing the water issue that they forget about other dangers.

Next, identify the class of damage and the type of water involved. Only licensed professionals can officially identify the “class” of water damage your property has suffered. Knowing this information is important, as it will determine certain steps in the cleanup process and make sure you cover all the proper safety measures.

What are the classes of water damage?

There are four classes of water damage and three types of water that may be involved.

Class 1 Cleanup: This is one of the smallest water damage situations and the simplest to clean. The impact is confined to a small area and the water did not sit for very long, so very little moisture seeped into the flooring or other materials.

The cleanup process can be as easy as mopping up as much water as possible. Circulate fresh air and get fans and dehumidifiers in the room to make sure everything dries thoroughly to prevent mold and mildew from growing. Quickly remove furniture, area rugs, or anything that needs professional cleaning and throw away anything that is unsalvageable.

Class 2 Cleanup: This level of damage usually impacts an entire room, damaging carpets and padding, subfloors or plywood, and even concrete. Moisture may have crept up to 24 inches up the walls, damaging structural wood, drywall, insulation, and other materials.

Class 2 water damage situations can quickly deteriorate so it is important to dry the area as quickly as possible by circulating fresh air and using dehumidifiers and fans. This will help prevent mold and microorganisms from growing.

It will be difficult to thoroughly dry the area without professional equipment and expertise. With this level of saturation, surfaces often feel dry to the touch but still have water trapped deep inside. That trapped water can cause mold and structural problems down the road if not properly addressed.

Class 3 Cleanup: This is perhaps the most serious level of water damage. A significant roof leak, a pipe burst, or a catastrophic failure of an upstairs appliance that leaks hundreds of gallons of water is often the cause. Damage usually impacts the ceiling to subfloor and practically everything is saturated.

Because of the extent of the damage in a Class 3 cleanup, it is wise to avoid the area until professional help arrives. Take extra safety precautions when entering the area. Wear gloves, goggles and a respirator to protect you from exposure to microorganisms, mold, and other contaminants.

Class 4 Cleanup: This level of water damage often includes standing water that can only be removed with special equipment. Standing water quickly grows bacteria and other microorganisms that pose health threats and can cause further damage beneath the surface.

Class 4 cleanup is perhaps the most extensive and involved cleanup and restoration process. After the standing water is removed, the drying process can begin. Materials like wood, brick, or concrete can trap water deep in the pores. It takes special equipment to thoroughly dry these materials and spaces.

The type of water that caused the damage matters

There are three categories of water that can cause damage to your home or business. The type of water that causes the damage significantly impacts the cleanup process.

Category 1 water is potable drinking water or safe water. It does not pose any threat to people or animals and comes from “clean water supplies” like broken pipes, overflowing sinks, and some broken appliances.

Category 1 water is the easiest to clean up because it does not pose an immediate health risk or contain potentially harmful bacteria.

Category 2 water is also called “grey water”. It contains large amounts of chemical, biological, or physical contaminants. Grey water can cause illnesses and infections because of the microorganisms, bacteria, or viruses in it.

Broken toilets, sump pumps, water leaking from dishwashers or washing machines are the most common causes of grey water damage. While Category 2 water does not contain sewage or seawater, it is important to clean the affected area cautiously and use the proper chemicals.

Category 3 water is known as “black water” and it poses the greatest health risk to animals and people. It contains harmful bacteria, sewage, and other contaminants.  Black water often comes from seawater, river water, backed up sewage lines, and similar sources. Back-flow from toilets, sewage pipe bursts, or large-scale floods are the most frequent causes of water damage by black water.

Professionals must take extra precautions when cleaning black water damage as it can cause serious illness and infection. It is important to take the proper safety precautions and use the right chemicals and cleaning methods to restore everything safely.

Time, temperature, and other factors can cause the water-damaged area to deteriorate. Even clean category 1 water can quickly become a category 2 situation if left untreated. A category 2 water leak can quickly become a serious health hazard if not cleaned properly.

Call the professionals

SERVPRO has certified experts and specialized equipment to handle any water damage situation. They use sensors and other equipment to identify the water migration line and all the materials that were impacted by the water. The sensors also help them find where the water may still be “bound” in materials—even where the surface feels dry!

Our technicians are trained and equipped to handle water restoration, carpet and upholstery cleaning, mold mitigation, and drying techniques to help minimize property loss after water damage. And we’re available 24 /7.

Our first step on the scene is to perform a detailed inspection of your home or property, including a damage assessment. We determine the scope of damage and develop a plan of action.

Next, we check for any sources of moisture to make sure all the potential water leaks are stopped. Then we check for contaminated water to ensure everyone’s safety. Identifying the type of water and classification of water damage is important to make sure your home or property is fully cleaned and restored.

Depending on the amount of water that needs to be removed, SERVPRO technicians will use pumps and wet/dry vacuums to clean up any excess water. Carpets, padding, and other materials that easily hold water are inspected and removed if necessary.

SERVPRO technicians use infrared cameras to find “hidden” water behind walls, ceilings, and in floors. Industrial-grade dryers and dehumidifiers help us remove all the water from the area. Moisture detectors, hygrometers, and other devices measure the extent of the damage and ensure everything is fully dried.

We hope you’ll never have to call us to restore water-damaged property, but if you do you’ll know what to expect and be equipped with the right information.

Home Damage: Why Restoration is Best

5/16/2019 (Permalink)

While you don't want to ever have to deal with any type of fire or water damage, the reality is this: 14,000 people are affected by water damage emergencies in the home or workplace daily. Fire damage restoration and water damage repair are necessary to help restore a home to its original condition again. Learn why restoring a home is better than starting all over again or ignoring the situation in the first place.



You Protect What Healthy Foundation You Have

Having a healthy foundation will help preserve your home when you encounter water emergencies or smoke damage. Did you know that it only takes two days for mold to start to set in when you get moisture damage in the home, and that the longer things stay wet, the more likely they are to be permanently damaged?



This is why getting your home restored after any type of fire or water damage is so important. You need to preserve as much of your home's foundation as possible, allowing yourself to keep as much of your expensive investment intact as you can.



You Keep Your Family Safe

When you have smoke damage restoration done on your home, you improve the air quality of your living space and make your house easier to be in. Water damage restoration prevents mold and mildew from building up, which is beneficial in its own way as well. You want to keep your family safe by creating a healthy environment for them following a home disaster.



You Preserve Your Home's Value

Any lingering damage to your home will cause the value of your property to drop dramatically. Mold damage and warped wood, soot-stained walls, peeling paint, and other damages caused by smoke and water will make your home not only lose value, but become an expensive investment when you do decide to finally fix up what has been damaged. In getting fire damage restoration and other needs completed as soon as they occur, you help keep your home's value stronger than ever.



If you have smoke, water, or another type of home disaster occur, seek professional services right away. Your home remediation specialist will give you the assistance you need to make your home sound and livable again.

Could You Have Mold Damage in Your Home? What To Look For and What To Do

5/6/2019 (Permalink)

When water has come in to your home, caused by any number of things – from what may seem like a small problem with persistent moisture from a slow leak or excessive condensation to broken pipes, toilet overflows, appliance failure such as the washer, dishwasher, or water heater, roof leaks, or flood waters from a natural disaster— mold can begin growing in as little as 48-72 hours.

How do you know if you have a mold problem? What do you do if mold is found? Are there precautions one should take? Read on as we answer your mold questions.

Mold: What is it?

Mold is a naturally occurring organism that is found anywhere there is oxygen. It is a type of fungus and thrives in moist environments. In nature, molds play an important role in helping break down organic material like leaves, fallen trees, and the like.  How many different species of mold there are is actually unknown, but experts estimate there are between tens of thousands to more than three hundred thousand. Cladosporium, penicillium, alternaria, and aspergillus are the most commonly found mold species in indoor mold situations.

Mold reproduces by releasing spores. Mold spores are microscopic particles, unable to bee seen without a microscope. Many types of mold spores are easily blown around, travelling through the air, settling and stirring with the wind. Other types are “sticky” and find their way by contact, sticking to a surface and transferring off somewhere else.

Spores can withstand extreme drought, extreme heat, and cold; they can survive in the spore state for years. These mold spores come into our homes through windows and doors, heating or air conditioning systems, and even traveling in on your clothing, shoes, or pets’ fur.

Like pollen and dust, when these spores are still “dry”, they for the most part they get vacuumed up or washed away when you clean house (make no mistake,they are still present, however in small, natural amounts.). They become problematic when they meet moisture indoors for an extended period of time.

Mold thrives in moist conditions and will begin growing when it comes in contact with moisture, and when in your home, it will begin “digesting” whatever it is that is wet that it has landed on – drywall, carpet, wood, even fabric.

What to do – and not do if you suspect mold damage

When you have water damage, if it hasn’t been dried out quickly and thoroughly by a professional, or if the source of the water hasn’t been found and repaired, it is very likely that you will develop mold, and subsequent mold damage.

Mold can cause damage to your property and pose potential health risks if not taken care of thoroughly and professionally. SERVPRO of Percy Priest/Hickory Hollow offers mold remediation services, and has professionals on staff with the proper training and equipment to safely and effectively handle mold issues. Until a mold remediation expert arrives, some safety precautions should be taken. Here are some basic “do’s and don’ts” for suspected mold issues:

    • DO be aware of “smells” after a water damage event. Any “musty” “old” “like dirt” or “like rot.” smells can mean mold is present.
    • DO keep the humidity inside your home at about 45% for your comfort (too dry can be uncomfortable) and inhibiting mold growth (too wet, over 50%, makes conditions ideal for mold growth.)
    • DO keep clear of the mold affected area. Depending on the severity, it may be wise to stay somewhere else until remediation is complete – especially if you have children, elderly, immune compromised, or folks with respiratory trouble.
    • DO shut down your air conditioner, heater, and any ventilation fans.
  • DO close the space off from the rest of your dwelling, if at all possible.
  • DO call SERVPRO of Percy Priest/Hickory Hollow as soon as you suspect a problem.
  • DON’T attempt to dry out an area affected by mold on your own.
  • DON’T disturb the mold affected area or move any furniture/items that are in the area.
  • DON’T attempt to clean the mold affected area yourself.

If you think you have a potential mold problem in your home, call the experts right away. SERVPRO of Percy Priest/Hickory Hollow have experts at the ready to help with any of your mold remediation needs.

What Should You Do When Your Basement Floods?

4/10/2019 (Permalink)

It's every homeowner's worst nightmare: basement flooding. Not only can flood damage be devastating on an emotional level, but it's also becoming a more common scenario for American families to experience. During the last five years, all 50 states have experienced floods or flash floods. In order to reduce the impact of water damage, it's important to know exactly what to do if and when your basement floods. That way, you can control the situation as much as possible and seek out the emergency services you need right away. Here's a brief checklist that you can follow if flood warnings turn out to hold water.

    • Put Safety First: Before you do anything else or think about water cleanup, you'll need to put safety first and foremost. That means you'll want to shut off all power (including both gas and electricity) to your home. If you are unable to access the circuit breaker or do not know how to turn off the power, you'll want to call your electrician to help you. Do not enter a basement that's flooded until the power is shut off and you have confirmation it's safe.
    • Get Moving: Once you know your basement is safe to answer, you'll be able to start the water cleanup process. While you may be able to move out and save certain items, keep in mind that the longer your belongings are exposed to standing water, the less likely it will be that the environment will be a sanitary one for you to be in. You should always wear gloves, boots, and a protective mask when in your flooded basement. If you can safely move these items to a place where they can dry out, you may be able to salvage at least some of the items you might otherwise lose. However, you should not attempt to save any appliances that have been exposed to water, as these will likely be irreparably damaged.
  • Contact the Professionals: Although there are some homeowners who might assume that they can handle water cleanup on their own, the truth is that any extensive flooding requires help from professional emergency services. Whether the flooding is the result of a natural disaster or a burst pipe, it's important to have the water cleaned up as efficiently as possible. Your DIY methods may simply not cut it -- and you may not even realize you've sustained water damage or are experiencing mold growth until much later. If you call the experts from the start, you'll be able to have the problem cleaned up and the damage restored with urgency. Ultimately, that means you can beat the flood at its own game.

Although you can take steps to minimize the effects of a flood, you may be proactive and still require emergency services to mitigate flood damage after the fact. Whether you tried to prevent this damage or the flooding caught you by complete surprise, we're here to help. Contact us right away in the event of a flood and we'll be there -- 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

3 Can’t-Miss Areas for a Truly “Spring Clean” Home

4/8/2019 (Permalink)

Spring is in the air. For many folks, that brings thoughts of deep cleaning and freshening up the house. Ridding the house of the stale smells and post-holiday grime doesn’t just make your home feel great, it can help keep your family healthy.

Today, we are going to talk about three areas you’ll want to add to your deep cleaning to do list that will make a huge impact on your “spring fresh” efforts:

1 - Deep Clean Carpets and Upholstered Furniture

Especially for those with pets, kids, and frequent guests, carpets and upholstery starts to look grungy and holds funky smells. Dirt and oils that settle deep into carpets can cause damage, acting as an abrasive. They break down the base of the carpet. Similarly, dirt and oils can wear your upholstery's fabric down, making the piece look older and more worn out than it should.

The first step you’ll want to take is a deep, thorough vacuuming. Move the furniture, use the attachments that get into the corners, and pay attention to high traffic areas, pulling the vacuum slowly to suck up the most dirt. Use appropriate attachments to vacuum upholstery, too. This will help remove pet hair and some of the dirt and grime.

If you really want to get the carpets and upholstery clean, you’ll need to go further. Hot water extractor carpet cleaners can be rented or purchased at any home improvement or big box type stores, but be aware that “your mileage may vary” as far as effectiveness. Many of these machines simply don’t have the suction power to pull dirt and water from deep within the carpet fibers. Calling the experts is your best bet. They have the tools and methods to truly deep clean your carpets and upholstery without damaging them.

2 - Draperies and Blinds

Dust, pet hair, pollen, musty smells and sometimes even food smells collect on draperies and curtains over time, especially over the winter when windows are left closed. Springtime is a great time to think about cleaning your window treatments, especially before you open the windows for the first time this season.

Some vacuums have attachments that allow you to remove surface dust from draperies and blinds. If you have these attachments, you can take some time to do this, but you should still consider deep cleaning them.

Most plastic or metal blinds can be taken down and cleaned by spraying them down with a hose and some dish soap. Wood blinds should never be soaked down; use a quality dusting spray specifically for wood. Fabric blinds take extra care, and may need to be dry cleaned. Some curtains and draperies can be machine washed on a gentle or “hand wash” cycle and line dry while they are still damp. Don’t put curtains or draperies in the dryer! Best case, they will shrink up and hang a few inches shorter. Worst case, the textured fabric could melt and ruin the draperies altogether.

To get the optimal clean and ensure your window coverings won’t be damaged in the process, call in a professional cleaning and restoration service. They have special equipment and processes to clean your draperies and blinds while they are hanging in place; not only are you getting a good, deep, damage-free clean, your home won’t be left exposed. You won’t get the feeling that you are in a fishbowl while your window coverings are off getting cleaned.

3- HVAC Systems and Air Ducts

Dust, pollen, pet hair, and mold spores collect in your heating, ventilation, and air conditioning systems (HVAC). This doesn’t just cause musty, dusty, funky smells, but it also means that your HVAC systems are running less efficiently, costing you money down the road.

Start by replacing or cleaning the air filters for the air conditioner. It’s best to replace your air filters routinely; this should happen as often as every 45-90 days for homes with pets and/or smokers. It’s especially important if you have people with allergies in your home.

The next step to achieve a deep clean is to focus on cleaning your air ducts. You can do this in a limited capacity using a vacuum cleaner hose with a flexible hose attachment, but these attachments can only reach so far. You won’t get a thorough clean. This is another instance where it is best to have an expert check over the HVAC system and air ducts. They can evaluate the need for an air duct cleaning and provide thorough cleaning of the HVAC system and ductwork.

Checking these three “to-dos” off your list will make a big difference in improving the appearance and freshening the smell of your home. For all of your spring cleaning needs, including tackling these 3 major areas, contact us at SERVPRO of Percy Priest/Hickory Hollow today!

Mold Remediation FAQs: What Homeowners Should Know

3/14/2019 (Permalink)

For most of us, our homes represent safe, healthy, and happy places. But you might not even realize that your house could easily be taken over by mold. If you've experienced water damage or have excessive moisture in parts of your home, it's possible that you may have a mold problem you don't even know about. If you do, it's essential to take care of this problem as quickly and as effectively as possible. In today's post, we'll discuss the solution -- mold remediation -- and answer some of the most common questions homeowners may have.

Where and How Does Mold Grow?

Let's start out with some mold basics. Mold can be found virtually everywhere, both inside and outside. Most of the time, mold is invisible, airborne, and relatively harmless. But when it makes its way into your home and starts to grow, that's when you can have a real problem.

Mold can grow on virtually any surface and can derive nutrients from both organic and synthetic products. It's typically aided by moisture or water, though some types of mold need more than others. For example, if you live in a humid climate, have a leaky roof, or have experienced basement flooding, this will make a mold infestation much more likely. It takes only 48 hours for mold to set in -- and the longer the environment remains wet, the more likely your home and belongings are to be damaged or permanently destroyed. That's why it's so important to take action early on; the longer you wait, the more the mold will multiply and the worse the damage will become.

How Can I Recognize Mold Growth?

One of the most recognizable signs of mold is the characteristically musty smell it has. If you associate basements with a musty odor, mold may actually be the reason why. It's also likely to grow in attics, within carpets, in crawlspaces and closets, and behind walls. It's possible, however, that you could have mold growth without ever detecting this distinctive odor. Mold also reveals itself visually and usually leaves visible stains on ceilings, walls, or even on furniture. It can usually be recognized as some type of discoloration; growths that are black, white, brown, tan, green, or even purple are often identified as mold. If you know your home is prone to flooding or you've experienced abnormally humid weather, you might want to keep your eyes peeled (and your nose sharp) for signs of mold.

What is Mold Remediation?

Now, let's talk a bit more about mold remediation. Remediation entails the removal and/or the clean-up of mold from an environment, such as a home or a place of business. There actually is a slight difference between remediation and removal, however. Some companies like to promise consumers that they can remove 100% of the mold from their homes. But mold exists everywhere, so this really isn't an accurate statement at all. Remediation actually refers to bringing mold inside a building back to normal, acceptable, and safe levels. If a company uses the term "remediation," it's usually a pretty good indication that they understand the science behind this process and are experts in their field.

What's Involved in the Mold Remediation Process?

Every company has their own remediation process, but generally speaking, there are some specific steps that are followed in most cases. Remediation specialists will inspect and assess the extent of the mold and the damage it has caused. Then, they will contain the mold, filtrate the air, remove the mold and mold damage, and clean the materials left behind. Depending on the circumstances, this process can take anywhere from a single day to a little less than a week.

Is It Possible to DIY Mold Removal?

Although DIY mold removal is technically possible, it's really not recommended. When you make disturbances to mold, it actually causes the spores to spread and can actually make the problem worse. Unless you have the proper equipment and training to perform mold remediation, it's not a good idea to try doing this yourself. To ensure this process is done correctly the first time, you'll want to enlist the help of professionals.

Think you're dealing with a mold infestation? We're here to help. For more information, please contact our team today.

Residential Protection: Limit Water, Mold, and Fire Damage

2/18/2019 (Permalink)

Being a homeowner is great, but it also comes with plenty of responsibilities. Though you have to make sure your bills are paid, the temperature is right, and the house is stocked with groceries, it's equally important that you focus on keeping your home protected.

Thankfully, emergency services can help both prevent household damages from ever occurring and addressing damage after it occurred in a timely and efficient manner.

Here are three main aspects of emergency services that can help homeowners avoid costly structural damage:

    • Fire Damage Restoration -- Being able to quickly detect a fire will help keep you, your family, and your home safe and protected. Regardless of suppression system activation or location of the fire itself, if detection is able to provide a warning up to 10 to 15 minutes before the end of the incipient stage of the fire, your local fire department will be able to arrive on time and limit the possible damage. Protecting your home from fire damage is extremely important, but so is fire restoration. Working with professionals after any size fire is extremely important and can help minimize damage and put the entire situation behind you.
    • Water Damage Restoration -- According to industry estimates, 14,000 people in the U.S. experience a water damage emergency either at home or at work every day. Whether the water damage is from constant leaks or flash floods, working with restoration professionals will be able to dry your home and get rid of all the water damage.
    • Mold Remediation -- Mold is a common, yet serious household issue that many homeowners need to be aware of at all times. Since it only takes about 48 hours for mold to set in, it's important to act quickly when it comes to ridding your home of mold growth. The longer items inside your home remain wet, the more likely they will succumb to permanent damage or be completely destroyed -- so act quickly.

Make sure you're doing everything you can to not only protect your home from damage, but to repair your home effectively after damages, as well. If you want to learn more about fire damage restoration, water damage restoration, and mold remediation, contact SERVPRO of Percy Priest/Hickory Hollow right away.

5 Things to Do After a House Fire Damage

2/11/2019 (Permalink)

A house fire, regardless of the damage caused, is always a stressful and frustrating experience that can put you in a state of vulnerability.

While it’s always best to prevent house fires from happening in the first place, it certainly won’t hurt to be fully prepared for the worst-case scenario. A house fire can happen to anyone and once the unthinkable happens, would you know what to do?

A fire is a situation where quick thinking is required and if it happens to you, the worst thing that you can do is to throw yourself in a panic.

Here are the things that you should do if you have experienced a fire in your home.

5 Things to Do After a Fire Damage in Your Home

1. Get in Touch With Your Insurance Agent Before Anyone Else

After the fire, expect that you will get left and right calls from contractors and public adjusters to help with your fire disaster recovery. However, they don’t really know you, your needs, or your policy coverage. These calls will only confuse and stress you out.

Thus, it’s highly recommended that you talk with your insurance agent instead.

Your agent will have enough experience dealing with emergencies like fire and he or she can talk about your coverage options. On top of that, insurance agents can also refer you to restoration professionals that will help put your house back together.

2. Secure Your House and Prevent Further Property Damage

Even after the fire has been put out, there’s still a possibility that damage to your property can continue.

For instance, the water left due to firefighting efforts can result in mold and mildew growth. The chemicals used to put out the fire may also cause damage to surfaces of your home. Your home’s roof and floors may also collapse. If you fail to secure your home, it will become susceptible to looting.

There is no shortage of professional services that can help secure your home after a fire. They also specialize in proper water extraction and dry outs. These companies will help put your home ready for future rebuilding efforts.

3. Document the Damage

Documenting the extent of the fire damage should be done as soon as possible.

For this step, you can start by taking numerous photos of the damage. Use both up-close and wide-range shots. If you are working with mitigation experts, you can ask them to take photos of the interior and structural damage.

Damaged items and equipment should also be photographed as they are removed from the property. A good tip would be to separate the damaged items from the undamaged ones. This makes it easy for you to list the damaged items. When making the list, try to be as detailed as possible and include information like purchase date, brand name, cost, and description of each item. For good measure, submit the inventory list along with the receipts.

4. Clean and Secure Undamaged Items

Before the facilitation of the repair and restoration processes, you will want to move the undamaged appliances and equipment out of the way.

Even if an item looks undamaged and not scorched, there’s a good chance that it contains some degree of soot or water damage. Don’t just stow away the undamaged items without proper cleaning. The undamaged items need a lot of attention when cleaning in order to remove odor and other contaminants.

This type of cleaning can be rather demanding, making it a job that’s more suited for professionals.

5. Remove Smoke and Soot

The cleanup job after a fire is far from a straightforward task. As mentioned, fire damage is likely deeper than what the eye can see.

In particular, soot, smoke, and extinguisher residue are generally difficult to remove on your own. If it looks like the damage is not that extensive, you can use a mixture of trisodium phosphate and water to get rid of the soot off the walls. A commercially-rented vacuum also does a good job of cleaning soot and extinguisher residue.

The most challenging part is removing the smoke and soot from your attic, crawl spaces, and HVAC systems. In this case, you will be better off hiring a reliable fire restoration company.

Call Fire Damage Restoration Pros in Nashville, Percy Priest and Hickory Hollow

When you’ve experienced a residential or commercial fire damage, restoration is almost always cheaper than total replacement. If the unthinkable happens and you need the help of a reliable fire damage restoration company, give SERVPRO a call.

3 Sneaky Signs Your Home May Have Hidden Water Damage

1/17/2019 (Permalink)

For many homeowners, the possibility of water or flood damage can bring up a lot of fears. But you can't let that fear about what you might find keep you from staying on top of your home maintenance. Otherwise, you could end up dealing with water emergencies, mold problems, and more significant restoration costs down the line. It's essential for you to recognize the potential signs of water damage in your home so that you can take steps to rectify the situation right away. Here are a few such signs to watch out for.

    1. Musty Odor: There's a reason why basements have a reputation of smelling rather musty. Of all homes that have basements, over 98% of them will experience water damage at some point. But contrary to popular belief, that odor actually isn't normal. It indicates the presence of moisture where it doesn't belong. Musty, moldy, or damp smells are very distinct (some liken it to wet newsprint or cardboard) and should be taken seriously whether your home is older or newer.
    1. Discolored Spots: If you've noticed discolored streaks running down your walls or a darkened spot on your ceiling, you could very well be dealing with a leak or prolonged damage from water. Visible staining will usually develop when a leak is consistent and slow. If you've recently moved into a new home or apartment, it's possible that the leak may have already been taken care of before you got there but the discoloration has remained. More than likely, however, the problem may still persist. Pay close attention to dark marks or even bubbling of paint, wallpaper, and flooring materials.
  1. Steep Bills: You might not realize it, but your monthly water and energy bills may be able to give you a clue about whether you're dealing with hidden water damage. A room that's persistently difficult to heat and that always feels damp regardless of the thermostat temperature may actually have some moisture in the walls. And if your water bill keeps increasing but your conscious water usage does not, that could be a telltale sign you've got a leak somewhere in the home. It's a good idea to track these expenses carefully; while higher HVAC bills may point to several other issues, consistent draftiness and increasing water bills may be cause for alarm.

You shouldn't be forced to wait until your home starts to leak before you take action. If you know what to look for, you'll be able to spot the possible signs of damage from water and contact the professionals as soon as you believe there might be a problem. Being proactive about this issue can save you time, money, and frustration in the long term. To learn more about how we can help with water removal and damage repair, please contact us today.

6 Things That You Can Do to Prevent Water Damage

1/7/2019 (Permalink)

Most homeowners’ insurance covers water damage claims depending on the policy. However, most homeowners would prefer not to deal with water damage at all. The stress and worry are simply not worth it at all.

Despite the insurance coverage, a water disaster can cause damage that will lead to exorbitant expenses.

When it comes to dealing with water damage, the best approach is to protect your home through prevention. Here are the things that you can do to protect your home from water damage.

6 Things You Can Do to Prevent Water Damage

1. Know the Location of Your Main Water Valve

The location of your main water valve is one of the most important information that you should know as a homeowner. When there’s a pipe leak or water heater failure, you can rush to shut off the valve to prevent any kind of serious damage.

Your main water valve is typically located outside your home, usually near the street and is either below ground or with a cover or in a concrete box. It may also be located on the side or back of your home.

This is also important in case you will be out of the house for a long time. You should shut off the main valve if you will be gone for several days or weeks.

2. Regularly Clean Your Gutters and Downspouts

As a rule of thumb, it’s best to clean your gutters at least twice a year.

Your gutter will collect leaves, sticks, nests, and other debris which will stop it from working properly. On a rainy day, your clogged gutter or downspout will create standing water that may be sent up through the roof and down your basement. This goes without saying that this could lead to flooding.

Therefore, make sure that the downspouts are properly cleaned and pointed away from your home.

3. Check for Leaks and Fix Them Right Away

Regularly check your home for potential leaks. Any sort of leaks should be addressed right away. Ignoring or postponing these repairs can lead to significant moisture damage. Your pipes will become a home for mold, mildew, and dry rot. At its worst, the leaks may even lead to structural damage.

Do yourself and your home a favor by fixing the leak as soon as you see it.

While your homeowner’s insurance offers coverage for accidental or sudden damage, you can’t say the same if the damage is from lack of maintenance.

4. Check Your Water Bill

Sometimes, detecting a water leak can be downright difficult. However, a sudden jump of your water bill might indicate that there’s a water leak. If your water bill seems abnormally high, inspect your home pipes for leaks or running water that you’re not aware of.

With this, you can possibly prevent any sort of water damage before it makes a turn for the worse.

5. Disconnect Hoses

During the colder months, the hose will accumulate standing water which will eventually freeze back into the pipe. This effectively creates an ice block that stops the water from flowing. In the worst case, the frozen standing water may bust your home pipes which could damage your floor, walls, and foundation.

Make it a habit to let the faucets outside your home drip as it will allow the pressure to be released. This is especially important if you’re going on an extended holiday and leaving your home for several days or weeks.

6. Install a Water Leak Detection Device

A water leak detector is a small electronic device that sounds an alarm whenever the sensor gets in contact with moisture.

There are many low-cost leak detectors that come with sensors which you can set up near a water heater or under the sink. There are even higher-end leak detectors that will send an alert to your smartphone when the device detects moisture or when there’s a significant change to water usage.

There are also leak detection devices that can even monitor the flow of the water and will automatically shut off the valve if there’s a significant change to the water used.

As a bonus, your home insurance company may even offer a discount if you install these leak detection devices.

Get Pros to Handle Your Water Damage Issues

Follow the steps above and you should be able to prevent your home from significant water damage.

However, if your home has already succumbed to water damage, don’t hesitate to call SERVPRO in Nashville, Percy Priest, and Hickory Hollow.

How to Prevent Water Damage During the Holidays

12/17/2018 (Permalink)

Whether you are traveling to be with your extended family for the holidays or just escaping the cold weather of winter, you will need to prepare your home for your absence.

While you are away, leaky or burst pipes can wreak havoc on your property if left unchecked. Flood water can damage electrical appliances, damage wooden parts of your home, cause mold growth, or even bring down an entire wall if left to stand for long.

Here at SERVPRO, we understand how frustrating it can be to come home to a flooded house. If a water disaster occurs, you can always count on us to clean and restore your property.

But before it gets to that, here are a few expert tips to prevent residential water damage.

Expert Tips to Prevent Water Damage this Holiday Season

1. Locate the Main Valve and Shut It Off

The most important measure to prevent water damage while you are away is to ensure that the main valve is shut off. This valve controls all the water that enters your home, and turning it off can prevent a potential disaster.

While you are at it, address the outdoor faucets. These are usually the first parts of your plumbing system to freeze and burst when temperatures drop. To prevent faucets and pipes from freezing, make sure you insulate them before you leave.  Even if you have frost-proof faucets, you still need to shut off the main supply valve.

After closing the main supply, open the faucets to drain any water that might have remained in the pipes. Don’t leave any hose connected to your outdoor faucets, as it can trap some water.

You can also prevent water from freezing in your interior pipes by adjusting the thermostat to at least 60 degrees. This will keep your house warm and ensure that water in the pipes within the external walls doesn’t freeze and ruin your plumbing system. It’s also wise to leave your kitchen sink cabinets and bathroom doors open to allow more heat to your pipes.

2. Turn off Valves to Probable Water Damage Culprits

Sometimes you might not want to completely cut off the main water supply because you are having a friend or neighbor water your plants or check on your pet while you are away. However, it’s crucial that you turn off the valves to any appliances in your house that may cause flooding. These include the dishwasher, washing machine, and ice maker.

You can find individual water shutoff valves on the supply lines that lead to these particular appliances. They usually have a small oval or round handle that you can turn clockwise and stop water from flowing to a specific part of your house.

3. Ensure your Sump Pump is Working

A sump pump system is an equipment that keeps groundwater off your basement. Before you head out for the holidays, test the sump pump to ensure that it’s fully functional.

If it isn’t working, check the breaker as well as the outlet pipe to ensure there’s no blockage.

If you can’t fix it, call a technician to help you out. Also, consider adding a backup battery to the sump pump so that it stays functional even if there’s a power outage.

4. Inspect Gutters and Waterways

Clearing sticks, leaves, or any other debris in your gutters and downspout extensions can prevent potential water hazards.

Before you leave, check your downspout inlets to ensure that rainwater flows smoothly down the spout. Also, ensure those downspout extensions are well-positioned to discharge rainwater away from your house’s foundation. Repair your roof accordingly to prevent any leaks.

Residential Water Damage Restoration with a Trusted Partner

If you will be spending the holiday at your home, you may consider investing in devices like water leak detectors to alert you on any leaks. You can then take the necessary precautions to prevent a disaster.

Like any other disaster, water hazards can’t always be prevented. Accidents happen and when they do, you need a reliable damage restoration partner.

If you are in need of any water damage cleanup and restoration, feel free to call SERVPRO of Hickory Hollow and Percy Priest. Whether it’s flooding or storm water damage, we have all the necessary to tools and equipment to get your home back to its pre-damage state. What’s more, we will offer mold remediation services to prevent any mold or mildew growth after the water damage.

How to Prevent Fires During the Holidays

12/3/2018 (Permalink)

According to the U.S. Fire Administration (USFA), residential fires are twice as frequent, more deadly, and more costly during the holiday season as compared to other times of the year.

Holiday fires cause all kinds of damage, from property loss to severe injuries. When a fire disaster strikes, you can do some damage control by calling a reliable damage restoration service provider in your area.

However, prevention is better than restoration when it comes to holiday fires. As such, you should make a deliberate effort to safeguard your home from these fires.

5 Fire Damage Prevention Tips This Holiday Season

Here are the main holiday fire prevention tips to keep in mind:

1. Candle Safety

Candles are an important part of holiday decorations, but they pose a serious risk of starting fires if wrongly positioned.

To prevent residential fires this holiday season, always ensure you keep decorative candles at least one foot away from flammable materials such as tablecloths. Also, hot wax and candle residue can find their way to the tablecloth and start a fire easily, so be on the lookout.

It’s also important to place your candles on a sturdy base so your pets or kids don’t knock them over. Additionally, always ensure all candles are blown out before going to bed.

2. Christmas Tree Safety

The Christmas tree is the ultimate symbol of the Christmas holiday. However, dry Christmas trees can pose a serious fire threat as they catch fire easily.

To prevent potential fires, make sure you pick a fresh tree and water it regularly. A well-watered Christmas tree is almost impossible to catch fire. Nonetheless, be careful when watering your Christmas tree so that you don’t spill any water on the decorative lights.

It’s also important to make sure you keep your Christmas tree away from heating sources such as the fireplace. As a general rule, always leave at least three feet between your tree and any fire source in your home.

3. Cooking Safety

Kitchen fires are some of the leading causes of residential fires. It’s quite easy to get caught up in the celebrations and forget that you left some food on the stove or in the oven.

To prevent potential fires, don’t leave any cooking food unattended. It’s also a good idea to keep a fire extinguisher within easy reach and ensure that your smoke detectors are functional. If possible, try to do your dry-frying and barbecue outdoors rather than in or near your kitchen.

4. Decorative Lights Safety

Decorative lights can also start fires if they aren’t fitted correctly. Before you decorate, inspect the light strings. Throw away lights with frayed wires and broken sockets. Also, don’t run more than three light strings end to end. If possible, consider using safer options like stacking plugs.

Check your extension cords to ensure they are suitable for both indoor and outdoor use.  Additionally, check outdoor receptacles to ensure that your ground fault interrupters are functional.

When hanging decorative lights outdoors, don’t use staples or nails as they can damage your wiring and cause a fire hazard. Instead, use hangers or clips – they are safer and look better.

5. Fireplace Safety

Chances are, your chimney walls have accumulated a lot of soot over the years. Soot contains creosote which is highly flammable.  Therefore, it’s important to clean the chimney before the holiday season to prevent any potential fires.

Screen your fireplace so that embers don’t pop out onto your furniture and start a fire. Also, refrain from using flammable liquids or wrapping paper to light up your fireplace. Only use dry firewood.

For outdoor firepits, ensure they are positioned at least 10 feet from any flammable structure or item.

Get Top-Notch Fire Damage Restoration in Nashville and Percy Priest

Before the holiday celebrations start, double check all the smoke detectors, fire sprinklers, and extinguishers to ensure they are functioning well. They come in handy when preventing small fires. 

If the damage has already happened, seek the services of a professional fire restoration expert in Nashville and Percy Priest. For the best cleaning and restoration, consider SERVPRO. 

Our technicians have the necessary experience, expertise, and equipment to quickly handle your fire damage – regardless of the size. From soot clean up to tarp and sealing services, we will ensure your home is back to its pre-fire condition in the shortest time possible. No job is too big or too small for us. Happy holidays!

Cleaning for Holiday Visitors

11/26/2018 (Permalink)

Holidays are a time for friends and family members to get together and make merry. However, hosting guests in your house brings its own share of troubles.

In the midst of all the shopping and cooking, the last thing you want to be worrying about is keeping your home clean.

Holiday cleaning is no walk in the park, but you can make it easier and effective with these SERVPRO cleaning tips.

Holiday Cleaning Tips Before Your Guests Arrive

1. Clean the Countertops and Glass Doors

Countertops and glass furniture are essential decorative items in homes. However, they are notorious for accumulating dust and stains, and should, therefore, be given proper attention during cleaning.

To clean them, spray the surface with your preferred cleaner and let it sit for about five minutes before wiping. This will allow the cleaning detergent to penetrate and dissolve any tough stains. It’ll also leave your house smelling fresh for longer.

2. Revitalize the Guest Bedroom

If you are hosting holiday visitors for more than one day, you need to revamp the guest bedroom. Chances are, your guest beddings have been cooped up in the closet for quite some time. If so, you might want to give them another wash to remove the muskiness. Ensure you have enough beddings for all of your guests.

Throw pillows should serve more than decorative pieces – they should provide a layer of cushion for firm beds. Also, stock the room with magazines and books that you believe your guests will love, and encourage them to carry them home if they want to.

More importantly, decorate the guest room sparingly. Serenity and space are more soothing than the clutter of glittery and shiny decorative pieces. If you really have to decorate, simply place a single flower in a vase on the bedside table or a nice clock on the wall.

3. Offer a Welcome Pack

Besides the obvious set of towels, it’s essential to provide your guests with small welcome baskets that contain some personal items like bar soap, shampoo, lotion, toothpaste, toothbrush, and deodorant. To bring out the festive mood, you could nicely wrap the items with ribbons.

3. Scrub the Kitchen

With the excitement of the holidays, your guests will most likely want to help in the kitchen. Therefore, it’s important to keep your kitchen neat and organized. Don’t forget to clean sinks and appliances you often use for cooking. Also, it’ll be helpful if you labeled all the food storage containers.

4. Invest in an Air Freshener

This is particularly important if you have several pets. To prevent odor from building up, light up a scented candle or use eco-friendly air fresheners. However, be mindful of strong fragrances – make it as neutral as possible, especially in the guest bedrooms.

5. Make Enough Room

Clear the clutter in all the rooms. If you don’t have time to sort your mail or paperwork, place them in a sorting box that you’ll come back to later. Fold or hang up all clothes and remember to leave enough space in the closets for your guests to keep their items.

6. Get Personal

Amid all the stressful preparation, you can easily forget that it can be somehow difficult for your guests to get accustomed to a new place. But there are a few things you can do to help them settle in.

For instance, you can remove your personal items like family photos and clothes from the guest room. This will help the visitors feel like the space is theirs for the period they’ll be at your home.

A little welcome note on the bedside table will also make them feel more invited.

7. Create a Meal Plan

It will be really helpful to figure out what kind of meals your guests want for the holiday. If you are having your whole family over, it won’t hurt to send an email ahead of time asking for suggestions.

You can also make a meal plan for who cooks when. A meal plan will help you budget and know what to shop for. Don’t forget to ask about specific allergies.

Ask for Expert Help from SERVPRO

Sometimes, holiday cleaning can be tough especially with a large group of guests. Additionally, the holiday season is a time to relax and have fun, and not to clean.

If you are looking for professional cleaning and restoration services, look no further than SERVPRO in Percy Priest and Hickory Hollow. With our 24/7 service and expert cleaning techniques, we will leave your home sparkling clean in no time.

Getting Ready for Holiday Guests

11/12/2018 (Permalink)

What is the holiday season without a handful of guests at your home?

We all know how hectic the preparation process can get, especially if you are having several people over.

But don’t fret, you can make this year’s holiday preparation less daunting by using these cleaning tips from experts:

6 Ways to Prep for Holiday Visitors

1. Tidy Up the Coatroom

Add more racks and hooks in the coatroom to accommodate all of the guests’ cold weather gear. If the coatroom is too small, use a spare bedroom. Before the guests arrive, clear out strewn items, spritz some air freshener, and put on the lights.

If you have a no-shoes policy in your home, place a small bench or chair by the entryway so your guests can easily take them off.

The coatroom is probably the first room to be noticed, so make a good first impression.

2. Stock Up Bathroom Essentials

Don’t assume your guests carried all of their bathroom essentials. To avoid awkward situations, always have towels visible and easily accessible for your guests. A good place to keep them is on their beds. This way, they don’t have to ask for them and they’ll be free to take a shower whenever they want.

Also, stock the bathroom with enough toiletries. Some of the most essential items include toothbrushes, toothpaste, after-shower robes, face towels, and washcloths. Also, you can give your guests a treat with a few luxuries like a lush bottle of shampoo, a special soap, and some good perfume and cologne.

3. Spruce Up the Guestroom

These rooms are rarely used, so it’ll be necessary to start by dusting and vacuuming the surfaces. Be mindful of any odors or strong scents in the room – your guests might not be comfortable with the lavender air freshener you love so much.

Make sure the AC is working properly and open the windows before they arrive.

Replace the old beddings with fresh, clean ones. Tuck them in nicely to create an inviting space. Jersey or flannel sheets are ideal for cold months, while cotton and satin sheets are perfect for the warmer months.

Additionally, ensure your guests have adequate drawer and closet space. Keep a variety of hangers to hold their jackets, trousers, and flimsy dresses.

Don’t forget to provide a full-length mirror.

4. Anticipate Your Guests’ Needs

It can get quite uncomfortable when your guests have to keep asking for little supplies that you forgot to provide.  At the minimum, try to have extra tissues, wipes, magazines, and a small trash bin in the guest room.

Other things you may want to consider include the Wi-Fi password, the alarm codes, extra blankets, as well as a notebook and a pen in case they want to jot down something quickly.

You can also provide them with extra house keys so that they can feel free to go out for walks or shopping as they please.

5. Stock Your Kitchen

Apart from catching up with friends and family, the holiday season is a time to enjoy some great family dishes.

Depending on the number of guests you’ll have, ensure your refrigerator and kitchen cabinets are stocked with enough food. This will give you more time with your visitors as you won’t have to do any major shopping.

Ask your visitors if there are any specific drinks or snacks they’ll love to have. Also, make things easier by having a scrumptious meal plan for the guests. Don’t put them on the spot by asking what they’ll have for dinner. However, it’s important to ask for any food allergies.

6. Prep the Kids

If you have kids, don’t automatically expect them to know how to behave with guests around – it’s something they have to learn. Before your visitors arrive, discuss with them your expectations and how to respect the guests’ privacy.

It’s also a good idea to include them in the preparation process. Encourage them to think of more ways that they can make your guests feel more welcomed.

Contact SERVPRO If You Need Any Help in Your Holiday Cleaning

Because there are a lot of things to do during the holiday season, it can be daunting to clean the whole house. If you are unable to revamp your home in time, consider getting help from professionals.

SERVPRO of Nashville and Percy Priest is always on call to help you out with your holiday cleaning – regardless of the size. We’ll make your home spotlessly clean and conducive for your guests.

Top-Notch Commercial Storm Damage Cleanup

10/22/2018 (Permalink)

If you live in an area that experiences frequent storms, then you understand how cruel Mother Nature can be. What’s worse, there’s nothing you can do to stop natural disasters from occurring.

However, there’s something you can do to salvage what’s left after a storm wreaks havoc on your entire neighborhood.

First things first, you need to ensure that your business is covered by a reliable insurer. You wouldn’t want to go through the struggle of restoration without the help of an insurance company. This is especially important if you operate in a community listed by the authorities as a storm-prone area.

After seeing the damaged caused by a storm, a lot of business owners often opt to rebuild their business premises. But there is a better, and less expensive, alternative – restoration.

Why Restoration is Better Than Rebuilding

In most cases, restoration is way less expensive than rebuilding from scratch.

In addition, rebuilding may take weeks if not months, and this can cost you a significant amount of money in the long run. You risk losing clients and business connections when you shut down for such a long time.

So don’t let storms cost you more than they should, find a reliable commercial storm damage cleanup and restoration partner. A good restoration company like SERVPRO will not only help you get back to business in a timely manner, but also help you through your insurance claims.

SERVPRO Will Get The Job Done!

There are tons of reasons why you should choose SERVPRO as your storm damage restoration expert.  Some of the main reasons include:

1. 24-hour Service

Our business model is built around customer service and reliability. That is why we have put measures in place to ensure that we can serve you round the clock. Regardless of the time or day, there’s always going to be someone on the other end of the line ready to offer a helping hand.

Storms don’t observe business hours, and neither do we.

2. Quick Response

It’s one thing to call for help and another to have it arrive on time. SERVPRO has brought its services closer to you, and that means that we can respond to your needs as fast as possible.

Our quick response ensures that your premises don’t suffer any secondary damage – a factor that can increase your restoration costs. It also allows you to get back in business as soon as possible – you don’t have to keep your customers waiting.

3. We Can Handle Disasters of all Sizes

SERVPRO has the right equipment and skilled personnel to respond to all kinds of disasters. No disaster is too big or too small for us. We have restoration teams strategically located close to your neighborhood to ensure you get quick services.

4. Highly Trained Specialists

As a leader in commercial storm damage cleanup and restoration, SERVPRO has tremendous expertise and hands-on experience. Our specialists have been trained on the most advanced storm damage cleanup techniques. Therefore, they can restore your business premises back to its pre-storm condition in the shortest time possible.

5. Hassle-Free Insurance Claim

We know the last thing you’ll want to deal with after a devastating storm is with your tedious insurance paperwork. Your peace of mind is important to us, and that’s why we take the burden of negotiating insurance claims off your plate. All you need to do is submit your papers and leave the rest to us.

A Quick Overview of Our Commercial Storm Damage Cleanup Process

The first thing our experts do is inspect your building to assess the extent of the damage. This will help us decide which equipment and techniques will be used in the cleanup process. When the examination is complete, our specialists file everything and forward a copy of this information to your insurance provider.

Once everything is agreed upon, our technicians go to work. To remove the standing water, SERVPRO uses specialized vacuums and pumps. Commercial air movers and dehumidifiers are used to dry the building and prevent the growth of molds and mildew.

Our technicians will use customized cleaners to disinfect the affected surfaces as well as restore salvageable items. Finally, the damaged walls will be repainted to bring back its lost luster.

Get Professional Commercial Storm Damage Cleanup Today!

If you are in need of top-notch commercial restoration in the Hickory Hollow, Nashville area, do not hesitate to call SERVPRO. Your property will be back to its pre-storm conditions in no time.

Storm Damage Cleanup Near You

10/8/2018 (Permalink)

Storms, hurricanes, and other natural disasters happen at the most unexpected times. Even if you heed to the weatherman’s caution, there’s little you can do to prevent strong winds and floods from wreaking havoc to your home.

Nevertheless, a little preparedness can go a long way as far as storm damage mitigation is concerned. The first step towards disaster preparedness is knowing the protocols and strategies to follow when Mother Nature goes rogue.

6 Things to Do Before Storm Damage Cleanup Professionals Arrive

Flood water and strong winds can cause all kinds of damage to your property. They leave your water pipes broken, sewers overflowing, cabinets wrecked, and carpets soaked.

So, what do you do in such a situation?

1. Safety First

First things first, ensure that you and your loved ones are safe. It’s important that you vacate your home before the storm starts.

Heavy winds can rip off your roof, damage glass windows, and even weaken your walls. Furthermore, moisture that soaks into furniture, carpets, and other items can facilitate the growth of mold, which is a health hazard.

Remember to ensure that all electrical appliances are plugged out and the main gas line is turned off.

You might also want to remove debris from your roof’s gutter so that excess water doesn’t settle on your roof and cause leakages. Don’t forget to decongest your house’s downspouts so that the excess water can flow away easily.

2. Assess the Extent of Damage

After the storm has completely settled, it’s time to take account of the damage. Only access your home after you are granted the permission by relevant local authorities. 

During a storm, your roof is most susceptible to damage. To find out the extent of the damage it has faced, look for:

  • Split seams
  • Dents on asphalt shingles
  • Leakages from the roof
  • Dented vents and gutters
  • Broken concrete shingles, slate, and tiles
  • Accumulation of debris in downspouts and gutters

Strong winds can cause damage to doors, windows, and other structures of your house. Be sure to inspect windows for things like broken panes, cracks, and damaged frames. If possible, board up broken window panes to avoid further damage and possible injuries. Be mindful of broken glass when doing this.

You should also be on the lookout for any kind of damage to your building’s siding, bricks, paint job, and walls. Look for things like cracks, holes, dents, splitting, chipping, discoloration, and breakages. While you’re at it, check whether your outdoor electrical appliances like air conditioning units are damaged.

3. Photograph the Damage

Before trying to salvage anything, take a picture of the damage. This will ensure that you are fairly compensated when you make an insurance claim.

4. Talk to Your Insurance Company

The next step is to talk to your insurer. Do this as soon as possible so that the insurance can come to inspect your home if need be. Don’t forget to provide them with the photos of the initial damage as well as any other documentation that can help you stake a claim.

5. Look into Federal Disaster Assistance

If your area frequently experiences storms or any other natural disasters, chances are, the government has enlisted the area for restoration assistance such as low-cost loans. Such initiatives will help you pay for the restoration and rebuilding process. So be sure to apply.

6. Call SERVPRO for Help

Sometimes it can be really tempting to rebuild your home again, especially when the damage is extreme. However, this will only cost you more and take a lot of time. Restoration is always the best option. To get your home back to its pre-storm condition quickly, do not hesitate to call for help.

Don’t take on the burden of cleaning soaked carpets and mold-infested walls all by yourself. Hire experts to do what we do best.

SERVPRO is a locally-based storm damage cleanup company in the Nashville - Percy Priest area. With our dedicated 24-hour customer service, we have the ability to respond quickly to water disasters of all kinds at any time. No job is too big or too small for us. Even better, we will help you through the insurance claim process.

Get Professional Storm Damage Cleanup Today!

When a water disaster strikes, it is important to have a restoration partner who responds quickly to your needs, and that’s what SERVPRO is all about. Our emergency lines are open 24/7 and our response teams are always ready to offer a helping hand.

Why You Need to Let Professionals Remove the Mold in Your Commercial Building

9/24/2018 (Permalink)

Do you operate a business in Nashville and suspect that you have a serious mold problem that needs to be professionally handled?

If so, you should consider contacting SERVPRO, which will give you everything you need to get the job done properly.

With that said, continue reading on below to learn why it is always best to turn to professionals for help when you’re facing a mold problem in your business.

Top 5 Reasons to Enlist the Services of a Commercial Mold Restoration Professional

Save Time

Though it’s possible to perform a mold removal and remediation project in your commercial building yourself, you’ll have to do a lot of research beforehand.

Plus, the entire project will take a considerable amount of your time to complete if you’re not used to doing it.

Mold restoration professionals already have the knowledge and skills required to get the job done correctly the first time. In addition to this, they have the correct equipment for every job. Therefore, they will take a short time to get rid of all the mold in your commercial space.

If mold removal and remediation isn’t your core business, it is best to leave the job to the professionals and focus on what your business specializes in.

Remember, the amount of time available for you to get things done cannot be increased. So you need to spend your time attending to things that require your utmost attention.

Save Money

If you don’t know the right removal procedures, you may end up spending lots of money on remedies that don’t achieve the intended results. Hiring commercial restoration professionals to get rid of the mold in your commercial space can save you time as well as money.

These professionals will take the guesswork out of your mold restoration job and ensure you get the desired results the first time.

Plus, most mold restoration businesses usually charge competitive prices for their services, so you don’t have to worry about getting ripped off.

Prevent Spread of Mold

Mold is ubiquitous, meaning mold growth can occur anywhere, provided that conditions are favorable.

When you hire a professional commercial restoration company, they will not just remove the visible mold growths in your commercial space – trust that they will identify the source of the mold spores that freely roam through the air.

They will also trace the source of the moisture that encourages mold to grow.  This way, you will be able to reduce the potential for further mold growth in your commercial building.

Get Informed About Mold Growth and Damage

Mold remediation professionals don’t just remove the mold in your commercial space – they also strive to understand the cause of the mold problem and the extent of damage it causes.

After getting rid of all the mold in your commercial building, they will educate you on how to stop mold from growing and even suggest what you may need to do to avoid a recurrence of the problem.

If your commercial space is hot and humid because of insufficient air flow, they may recommend that you get a proper size air conditioning system or improve ventilation. This will ensure efficient circulation of cool and dry air to discourage mold growth.

Protect the Value of Your Commercial Property

Mold can cause costly damage to any building if it goes unnoticed for a long time. This is particularly true for mold that grows in often-hidden areas of buildings such as wall insulation, underside of carpets, ceiling penetrations, air conditioning ductwork, and so on.

When you hire a professional to provide commercial restoration service, they will carry out a thorough inspection of your commercial building so they can spot all the mold no matter how hidden it may be.

This is essential to preventing costly mold damage and maintaining the value of your commercial property.

Get Mold Remediation Services from SERVPRO

Often, you’ll find some businesses shy away from seeking the services of commercial restoration specialists because they think they can save money by doing the job in-house.

While this may be true, they risk facing spread of mold to other areas of their commercial space due to shoddy mold removal.

Commercial Restoration: How to Spot Mold Problems in Your Commercial Space

9/10/2018 (Permalink)

Like in other places across the U.S., running a successful business in Nashville isn’t an easy thing.

You need to plan everything properly but also stay on top of things that may throw a wrench in your plans.

Unfortunately, there are some things that you may not see coming – like water intrusion or damp spots that may create the perfect environment for black mold to grow and thrive.

Thankfully, there are many commercial water restoration professionals out there that can help you deal with the problem the right way.

But before approaching these professionals for help, you should be able to determine if you have a mold problem in your commercial premises.

Top 5 Signs Your Commercial Building May Be Mold-Infested

Mold infestation manifests itself in many different ways, but it is particularly common in damp areas of a building. Here are a few warning signs indicating that you may require restoration service in your commercial building.

Water Leaks

Water leaks are one of the major reasons why mold attacks occur in many commercial buildings. These leaks can arise from faulty water pipes, faucets and plumbing fixtures, as well as damaged roofs.

Water leaks that go unnoticed for too long encourage mold growth because they are a moisture-source, so you should consider hiring a remediation expert immediately you find out that water is leaking into your commercial building.

Visible Growths

As already mentioned earlier, mold usually grows on wet surfaces that are exposed to oxygen supply. So when you start seeing colored spots or hair-like patches forming on the walls, ceilings or floors of your commercial building, you should know that you have a mold issue.

Leave the mold undisturbed, as it may easily move to other areas of the building if you try to remove it yourself. Remember, mold comprises countless microscopic spores that can easily travel through the air and settle elsewhere.

Musty Odor

When mold invades your commercial space, it will introduce a pungent odor that will make the space feel rather stuffy and uncomfortable. This can make it hard for staff to concentrate on their duties. Make sure you seek the services of commercial restoration experts when you notice musty odor in your commercial building.

Ensuring there’s fresh air in the workplace is vital to boosting the overall productivity of your employees.

Peeling Paint

Is the paint on your walls, ceilings, and other surfaces within your commercial space peeling off? Paint is designed to make your commercial space look nice, but also prevent surface damage.

One of the elements that the paint protects interior surfaces from is water. The paint stops water from infiltrating interior surfaces, thus preventing water damage. If you notice that the paint on the interior surfaces of your building is peeling off, you should watch out for mold infestation.

Floods

Have you experienced flooding in your commercial space in the past? If so, mold might have crept into your space without your knowledge. The wet areas of the building were not dried in good time, they could have allowed mold to grow and thrive.

With that said, it is important to ask a commercial water restoration specialist to inspect your entire building after flooding to spot any areas where mold growth and damage might have occurred.

Can Mold Problems Recur?

Mold can be found anywhere and it comprises countless microscopic spores that freely wander through the air. Provided that conditions are right – that is, moisture is present, mold growth can occur anywhere.  

It is important for you to keep the interiors of your commercial space as dry as possible. This is the best way to manage mold problems in your space. You won’t be able to remove all the mold in your commercial space, but you’ll at least be able to maintain acceptable mold levels.

Mold growth is an eyesore and serious health issue, but it can also cause costly damage to your commercial building. Therefore, it is important that you deal with the problem as soon as you detect it.

The best way to handle the problem is to enlist the services of a professional.

They will remove the mold from your building, but also advise you on how to minimize a recurrence of the problem down the road.

SERVPRO’s Mold Remediation Services

8/20/2018 (Permalink)

Home improvement is always the mark of a proud home owner.

If you take a moment to think about it, your house is where many major parts of your life occur and where you create cherished memories with your family.

It’s a place where comfort is key and where you should be able to relax.

Why wouldn’t you want to improve it?

In the process of looking after your home, there can be some tasks which are not as glamourous as beautifying your lawn.

Home improvement could also mean taking an inventory of things which could potentially harm your house. In this regard, mold is a prime candidate for scenarios that can damage the place you call home – and when not attended to, it can lead to costly repairs.

As a company that services many households throughout the Nashville, Percy Priest community, SERVPRO ensures you have the knowledge to keep your home in the best shape possible.

With a bit of insight, you’ll be able to understand the causes of mold growth in your home, and the mold remediation methods available to quickly remedy this issue.

Where Does Mold Come From?

The presence of mold in your home is the result of an organic process caused by some very specific, yet common, in-home scenarios.

A continual source of warmth and water creates the right equation for mold to grow and spread quickly. Mold is basically just waiting for these two factors to combine, and it will thrive on them if it’s overlooked.

The worse thing about this potential problem is that mold has no respect for your home. It’s an organic fungus which eats through other organic materials. It won’t stop until something in its environment has changed.

Meanwhile, your walls, ceilings, and carpets are at risk of mold taking hold and causing irreparable damage.

It could be that you currently have not noticed any mold problems in your home, but a pro tip is to check areas of your home where water is constantly in use or flowing through – like pipes.

Additionally, it’s a good idea to check appliances or areas of high water usage. Things like faucets, water heaters, and refrigerators are all good places to start looking.

You may not be qualified to fix a leak, but you can certainly spot one and call a professional. Even a small leak can be a cause of mold in the future, so you should never overlook any scenario where water can damage your home.

Heavy storms and flooding also have the potential to send large amounts of water flowing into your home’s roof, walls, basement, and foundation.

If met with the intense heat of the summer season or if you live in a warmer climate, your mold issues could start outside – and quickly move in.

It might take more effort, but make sure to check for leaks in the aftermath of any intense weather.

Mold Remediation Services for Your Home

The worse part about mold is that, if the conditions are right, it can continue to grow.

If it’s already gotten out of hand, you need professional services to make sure mold doesn’t continue on its disastrous warpath.

Professional mold remediation is our suggestion for confronting mold issues head on in your home.

Mold remediation will make sure that mold is cleaned and removed from your house, in addition to remedying the root causes.

Special methods and chemicals are used after a mold remediation specialist does an assessment on your situation. This process will also prevent mold from returning.

Get Served by the Pros at SERVPRO

Mold growth and damage in your home is no small matter. But with a little preventative action, you can make sure to keep your house completely mold-free.

SERVPRO has a wide variety of services and a wealth of knowledge to help you understand and combat all the mold causes in your home. Additionally, SERVPRO has mold remediation services available, so you can have one of the industry pros assess, prevent, or remedy any mold issues you may have.

A Professional View on Commercial Mold Remediation

8/6/2018 (Permalink)

These days, there seems to be a do-it-yourself guide for every situation.

With a quick “how to” internet search, you can have step-by-step instructions to do everything – from planting your own garden to building a rocket.

It’s a privilege to have access to so much information, and the fact that there are so many tasks which can be completed on your own (with practice and the right tools) is wonderful.

However, dealing with mold isn’t a task anyone should undertake without professional help. Mold is a particularly nasty problem which, if not prevented, can lead to damaged homes.

A mold invasion can be an even more problematic situation for commercial spaces. Mold issues at home can at least be taken care of while you’re at work. But having mold at your place of business is a completely different situation.

SERVPRO knows how difficult mold can be based on experience servicing businesses throughout the Nashville, Percy Priest community. As your go-to source for commercial mold remediation, we’d like to shed light on how mold can begin and how we’re here to put an end to it.

Mold’s Humble Beginnings

Summer heat is typically a time where people enjoy going for a dip in a cool pool or a lake. Unfortunately, mold loves the combination of heat and moisture that happens during the summer months just as much as we do.

What causes mold growth is the meeting of unchecked moisture and a warm climate.

One thing that can be commonly overlooked is the root cause of mold. Pipes are used every day, especially in commercial spaces to transport massive amounts of water, and like anything, they experience wear and tear.

This will eventually lead to leaks.

A pro tip is to consider areas where water runs through pipes as a possible point for mold growth.

Whether in your business’s kitchen or bathroom, a leaky pipe can be the beginning of a much bigger problem and it is something that should never be ignored.

Why Getting a Pro is Way Better Than a DIY

You’ve already probably noticed mold growth in your building and you’re now looking for solutions.

Even in the age of open source do-it-yourself guides, you need to get a professional to look at your mold situation. Handling it by yourself can be a fast track to seeing mold eat at your walls and wallet because there’s a good chance that it has a hold far beyond what you can see.

The first thing a SERVPRO professional will do is take an assessment of how extensive the damage is. You will be provided with accurate feedback on what needs to be done next.

Why a Mold Assessment is Vital

Knowledge of any situation facing your business is important.

With mold, a professional assessment will give a full account of the damage and what commercial mold remediation work needs to be done.

Commercial mold remediation is a service where a full assessment is taken. During this process, the mold is removed. In extreme cases, this can mean cleaning or getting rid of the carpets, dry wall, and even ceilings which have been compromised by mold.

Special methods, chemicals, and cleaners are then used to clean up the mold – such process also prevents it from returning.

A professional assessment is an all-around look into your mold issue. It will consider the source of the problem, offer solutions to stop it, and employ tactics to keep it from happening again.

SERVPRO is Here to Serve You

Commercial mold remediation is a professional service that SERVPRO finds to be one of the most valuable assets to local businesses.

There are few things more troubling than to see a hardworking business owner come to us with a compound mold issue that would have been easily fixed with professional mold remediation services.

If you want to know more about commercial mold remediation or if you’re in need of one, feel free to reach out to us.

We’re here, so the mold doesn’t have to be.

Don’t Take a Chance with Water Damage

7/23/2018 (Permalink)

Life is a beautiful collection of happenings - both planned and unintentional.

In the most ideal of scenarios you’ve been fortunate enough to build a happy and healthy home environment. Your day-to day life is filled with general tasks that are common in most people’s routines. You work hard, take care of your family, and seek to keep a productive and safe household.

Unfortunately, water damage has no regard for this.

Whether because of some minor piping issues or as the result of a chaotic natural disaster, water damage can strike any of our homes. Water damage can include even the most minor of pipe leaks all the way up to wide spread damage resulting in a need for emergency restoration services.

As a longtime service provider to the people of Percy Priest, Nashville, and the surrounding area, SERVPRO knows how impactful house flooding and water damage can be.

We’re here to provide just a few of things to consider based on our industry expertise for ways you can safeguard your home and personal items against water damage.

Gut Your Gutters and Others

It’s not the most glamourous work, but it could pay off, and not at the expense of your wallet, in the long run.

Routine maintenance on your gutters and eavestroughs are a very simple way to prevent water damage.

Over time pathways can become filled with debris which eventually lead to the water flow being blocked. When this happens, the water buildup can become too much for the gutters and ultimately cause it to collapse.

To avoid this, be sure to clear debris from any part of your home that has the purpose of leading water from the house. Gutters, downspouts, eavestroughs, and storm drains are all things you’re going to need clutter free when heavy rains come.

Home Improvement

It may seem like a stretch, but routine home maintenance and beautification all play a role in preventing water damage during floods.

Keeping your roof, pipes, and drainage systems up to code are obvious tasks to keep your home free from easy occurring water damage scenarios. Beautifying your lawn through landscape work is another deterrent to flooding. Homes with gardens and other vegetation have an added benefit of being natural buffers by minimizing soil erosion.

Additional improvements you can make are to take a survey of your sidewalks, driveways, and any patio areas you may have. These tend to have general ware overtime and that damage can make it easier for water to collect in faulty areas.

What the Tech?

What you can’t see can hurt you.

We’ve covered mainly preventing water damage that can affect your home physically, but as an extra tip we advise you keep your data in mind.

It can be more of an afterthought in the wake of a flood to remember everything you’ve stored on your computers and electronic devices. However, once those tech gadgets are destroyed that data is lost.

Whether they’re professional files or personal ones, take a moment to back up your hard drive into a cloud-based platform. Insurance may cover getting a new a computer, but it won’t recover your precious files.

Be Smarter Than Backwater

Even if you’ve made it past the worse of the storm there can be more foul possibilities awaiting.

It’s already a best practice to ensure that your pipes are clear for water to flow out, but make sure you’ve taken measure so that something can’t get back in.

With waters rising, sewage systems can become full to the point of tracking up your pipes and out of your home’s draining points. The result would not only be water damage but whatever sewage comes along with it.

We recommend having a plumber to install a backwater valve which is a device that prevents water from reentering your house during heavy rain periods. Like all your water damage prevention efforts, this too should be a routine check.

Water damage is one thing, but sewer water is a burden of another breed.

SERVPRO Can Help

We at SERVPRO know how water damage of any kind can become a costly situation and the dangers flooding can cause.

You may not be able to help that the storm season is picking up, but you can certainly take measures to safeguard your home and family from water damage.

SERVPRO’s 6 Quick Water Damage Prevention Tips

7/9/2018 (Permalink)

You’re a busy person with a lot of responsibility on your shoulders.

The last thing we at SERVPRO want you to have to worry about is random water damage occurring in your home. This is especially true considering that much of it is very preventable with a little foresight.

Our Top Water Damage Prevention Tips

Below, we’ve assembled a list of quick water damage prevention tips for our friends and clients in Nashville, Hickory Hollow – and the surrounding area to make sure that you’re a step ahead of potential issues.

No Leak Left Behind

This is probably one of the simplest water damage prevention tips you can use.

You’re already aware that your pipes, whether in the kitchen or in the bathroom, are made to carry water. You should make it a good practice to look under your counters every now and then to see if there are any leaks. If you do it enough you can catch them when they’re just beginning and may even be able to fix them yourself.

However, if you find yourself in a worst-case scenario, give your local SERVPRO professional a call.

Avoid Water Backup

Water backup can occur when waste and water which has already been disposed comes back into the house. This can be caused be excessive flooding when the sewage and waste systems are filled to the brim.

There’s a great potential that everything you send down the pipes will come back through, and maybe some things you didn’t.

We suggest having a backflow valve installed to prevent any form of backup. This is designed to prevent anything from coming back up the pipes from the sewage, whether water or waste. It’s an extreme case for this to happen, but ultimately one which you’d be happier to prevent.

Install Water Detection

This is a costlier solution but will be worth the investment if you can detect water issues in advance.

Water detectors are small devices that alert you whenever the sensors meet water. The beauty of these are that they can detect even the lowest levels of abnormal moisture. This means that you can detect potential water problems long before they’ve had a chance to cause any major issues.

Watch Your Grease

Never poor grease down the sink.

Ever.

Grease might as well be glue, because it has the capability of becoming very clingy inside your pipes. Once enough of it sticks it will be very difficult to loosen up and will result in serious damage to your pipes. The best thing to do is to put it in your old cans and toss it out when it hardens.

Plant a Flower, or Two

Having a garden can do a whole lot more than winning you yard of the month award.

A little yard work helps in the case of heavy rains because it’s more difficulty for the soil be displaced by flood waters. Think of it as a first line of defense that water must break through before reaching your house.

An alternative to this it to make sure to manage any large trees or vegetation. These should be just as kept as a garden because if the roots get out of hand they can grow to the point of breaking into your utility pipes.

Check Your Appliances

It’s always a good idea to make sure your household appliances are functioning properly, so why not take it a step further?

When preventing water damage, you should routinely check appliances that use water They’re bound to already have factory instructions for proper use, and these should include water related tips. However, even if you’re not sure about how the appliance can lead to water damage it’s easy to spot an issue.

If you see water coming out where it shouldn’t - it’s probably a good time for maintenance or to get a replacement.

Just in Case – We Are Always Here!

Perhaps you’re just reading this after already discovering there is extensive water damage to your home. No worries. SERVPRO specializes in emergency restoration services and can get your home fixed via our team of experts.

However, if you haven’t seen any damage yet, this is the time to get everything around your house set up so that you can feel confident knowing you’ve done everything you can.

Prepping Your Home for Travel to Avoid Water Damage

6/18/2018 (Permalink)

We hope you don't need our industrial moisture control systems, but if you do, we have you covered.

The summer season is finally here.

However, nothing can put a damper on your travel plans than a lack of peace of mind that your home is safe. Life happens whether on vacation or at home, but you can always take small steps that go a long way to keeping your home protected from the unexpected.

Water damage can happen anytime and it doesn’t take a large flood or storm to do it. At SERVPRO in Nashville we know how expensive repairs can be – from minor leaks all the way to our most extensive emergency restoration services.

However, before you pack up for your summer holiday, we have a few tips to help with any concerns you may have about leaving your home.

SERVPRO’s Fast 4 Tips for Preventing Water Damage

Here are some tips which will prevent your home from water damage during your summer travels, and also any time of the year. You’ll be able to have more peace of mind and fully enjoy your summer travel knowing that you’ve acted on our 4 tips: 

  1. Declutter Those Gutters

It’s not a glamorous job, but someone’s got to do it.

We recommend cleaning your gutters at least twice a year to make sure they maintain an unblocked flow. Perhaps, ice dams are a more well-known issue for gutters. But during summer, gutters still can cause water damage. Blocked water can affect your roof and even the gutter itself.

Additionally, if the downspouts aren’t clean and secure, it could create overflow and eventually cause foundational damage. This summer, don’t let this easy fix become a water damage nightmare.

  1. Detect, Not Neglect

Technology is a great way to inspect the unexpected.

Installing water detection devices is a tech-savvy way of being notified if you’re at risk of any water damage or even recognizing it’s begun. Water detectors are small devices that notify you when their sensors pick up moisture. These can be placed in typically hazard areas like water heaters, sump pumps, washing machines, dishwashers, toilets and others high water traffic areas.

A good thing about these is they’re capable of detected low-moisture levels meaning that you can most likely catch the issue before the damage becomes to extensive.

  1. Control the Mold

By the time you see mold, there’s more damage than meets the eye.

Mold forms over time and neglect. Perhaps it’s a small problem now but imagine it after being gone from home for a month or two. If you consider the summer heat, then there’s a steamy situation is on your horizon.

SERVPRO strongly advises to not ignore or postpone repairs of any existing moisture damage. When left unattended, this seemingly harmless moisture can evolve into mold, mildew, dry rot, and structural damage to your home. The warmer summer conditions will only make this situation worse.

It all begins with a small leak that you may overlook as being a little light water damage. Don’t take this for granted, and get it fixed before hitting the road.

  1. The Water Main Attraction

How can you have a water leak inside your house if no water is running into it?

The water main should be the “main” thing you consider before leaving for summer travel. Whenever you’re leaving for a long period of time, you should make sure that your water main is off. It’s a simple move that can remedy most of your water damage risks.

In fact, ensuring that your water main is shut off can prevent most non-existent water damage issues from occurring while you’re traveling. Existing water issues may persist, but at least they won’t be amplified by running water.

A Happy Home

There will always be things you don’t expect to go wrong, whether from natural disasters or just faulty parts. For those, SERVPRO has emergency restoration and maintenance services, but the simplest action you can take to prevent water damage begins with you.

Before you set out for a wonderful summer vacation, make sure to check your home using our tips and even to identify existing water damage that needs our attention. You’ll have a much happier summer if you do.

Fire Damage Prevention While on Vacation

6/6/2018 (Permalink)

Honk if you see our car in Nashville while you're driving to your summer destination.

Summer is typically a time where we all get to take a break from patterns of day-to-day life.

It’s always nice to have a couple of weeks off to either beat the heat at a cold tourist destination, or even to embrace it on a beautiful beach.

However, no matter how you deal with heat, you don’t want to return from your vacation this summer to discover that a heat of a different kind has destroyed your home.

Fire damage can happen at any time of the year – the extensive fire and smoke damage can destroy your home. While SERVPRO offers emergency restoration services to help rebuild after fire damage, we want to provide some tips that can help you avoid a tragic event this summer.

Tips for Preventing Fire Damage at Home

There are certainly occasions where natural disasters are simply out of our control and really aren’t affected by any precaution we take. However, for those instances where everyday choices can make the difference, we’ve compiled a few tips for preventing fires at your home while traveling this summer.

Neighborhood Watch

You don’t need to have an active Neighborhood Watch to make sure someone’s looking after your home.

Ask one of your trusted neighbors to be on the lookout while you’re away. This can be very helpful for both preventing fires from breaking out, but also for stopping them before they get too out of hand. Even if you’ve taken precautions before leaving, it doesn’t hurt to have someone do a walk through to double check.

In the worst-case scenario, you’ll at least have someone you trust keeping your home in mind and ready to call the fire department. Their watchfulness can make all the difference in how much fire and smoke damage occurs.

Electricity

There’s a strong likelihood that you’re not going to be using any of your home appliances while traveling.

Unplug them.

It’s always proper fire prevention practice to make sure your appliance chords are in a good shape, that they’re being used to manufacture standards, and that your circuits and extension cords aren’t overloaded.

However, while gone, the simplest remedy is to unplug everything that doesn’t need power. A damaged chord can’t cause you issues if it’s not plugged in.

Also, while you may be somewhere taking in the summer sun and clear skies, a thunderstorm could be happening in your city. You can easily prevent a power surge hitting your house and causing a fire by having little-to-know items connected.

This appliance check also includes your water heater. This is another area of your home which should be checked routinely because damage to electrical lines or faulty valves or vents can lead to a major fire hazard.

Additionally, it’s a wise idea to check your house’s main circuit breaker or box. This is a good habit before leaving for the summer, but also for any time of the year. The main box serves as a defense against electrical surges. So, if you see it’s already burnt out, call a specialist right away.

Safety Systems

There is a wide variety of tech and detection services available to monitor your home while away. These are great whenever you’re away from home, especially if you’re gone for an extended period.

If you know you’re going to be traveling extensively, it could be a great idea to invest in a home security system. Wireless systems like these not only can alert you for when a fire breaks out, but can even be automated to the point of calling the fire department on your behalf. 

Investing in a sprinkler system for your home is an obvious plus against preventing fire damage. Check this system before you leave to make sure that it’s functional. A home security system and a helpful neighbor can only do so much, and it may be your sprinklers which save the day.

Enjoy the Heat

SERVPRO is here for you with emergency restoration services in the unfortunate event that your home has fire or smoke damage. Routine appliance and safety equipment checks should be a part of keeping your home safe during any time of the year. It’s better to check them now, so you can enjoy your summer later.

Mold Restoration: Top Causes of Mold Infestation in Your Home

5/21/2018 (Permalink)

Mold spores are all over. They can enter your house through windows or vents and thrive in damp areas leading to infestation. Although this green fungus may seem harmless, it poses a great risk to the structural condition of your house.

In order to deal with mold influx, you should take the initiative of finding its root causes. This will help you deal with the problem effectively.

How to Tell You Have a Mold Problem in Your Home

Have you noticed a strong, stuffy odor in your home? Do you feel congested or have watery eyes while indoors? Is the paint on your walls and ceiling peeling off? Can you see white spots and frothy patches forming on your floor and furniture?

If your answer to these questions is affirmative, you might have a mold problem.

5 Common Causes of Mold Infestation in Your Home

Mold needs both moisture and oxygen to flourish. Here are some of the moisture/oxygen sources in your home that could facilitate its growth.

1. Poor Ventilation

Closing your windows all through makes your house poorly ventilated and creates pouches of stagnant humid air – a conducive environment for mold growth. Poor aeration will also make the wet surfaces in the house dry out slowly.

Always ensure your house is well-ventilated by keeping the windows opened during the day, especially the rooms that prone to dampness like the kitchens and bathrooms.

2. Humidity

High humidity indoors promotes mold growth. A humidifier is a great device for regulating the humidity in your home. To prevent it from growing, ensure your humidifier is set below 55%. However, don’t set it too low – dry air can also be a health hazard.

3. Water in the House’s Foundation

Underground water or stagnant water in the yard can seep through the foundation and allow mold to grow on it. This can severely damage the foundation and walls, especially if the ground around your home slopes towards the house.

You will need to seek the services of a landscaper to modify the terrain so that that the water drains away from your house. Afterward, contact a remediation professional to inspect areas affected by mold growth and prevent further growth.

4. Flooding

If you live in an area that’s area is prone to flooding, then mold infestation is unavoidable during the rainy season. Your house may take weeks to dry out, but mold takes only 24 hours to grow. In fact, extreme flooding can put your home at the risk of being infested with toxic molds.

Once the flood has cleared, seek the services of a remediation expert to determine the extent of the damage, dry your home, and then clean it up.

5. Leaking Water Pipes

Leaking pipes do not only waste water, but also promote mold growth, especially if the leak is under the sink or within walls.

Ensure to check your water pipes on a regular basis to avoid any further damage. If there is leakage, call a plumber to repair the damage as soon as possible.

6. Organic Food Sources

Just like any other living microorganisms, mold also needs food to survive. Mold gets its nutrients from various organic food sources, such as paper, cardboard, wood, drywall, organic dirt layer and many more.

As a result, removing decomposing organic material from the interiors of your home is a reliable way to mitigate infestations.

What Happens During Mold Remediation?

If you notice any signs of mold in your home, ensure you call a remediation specialist and get rid of the green nuisance.  During the remediation the specialist will:

  • Inspect and test for infestation.
  • Seal off the room with plastic covers to prevent spores from spreading to other parts of the house.
  • Sanitize the air with HEPA filters to remove spores that linger in the air.
  • Moisten dry mold before removing it with bleach, ammonia, borax, or vinegar.
  • Clean both affected and unaffected surfaces for the ultimate protection.
  • Dry-vacuum the house to remove all residue.

When remediation is taking place in your home, it’s best that you wear protective clothing such as gloves, goggles, and masks to prevent contact with the mold and spores.

Contact SERVPRO for Top-Notch Mold Remediation in Percy Priest 

Want to get rid of the mold infestation in your home?

At SERVPRO, we pride in helping both residential and commercial clients remedy mold damage in their indoor spaces. Don’t hesitate to contact us if you need help with your remediation project.

Commercial Mold Restoration: 4 Ways to Curb Mold Growth Post Remediation

5/2/2018 (Permalink)

Mold exists literally everywhere, only that you might not always see it with your naked eyes. This type of fungus produces countless microscopic spores that freely flow through the air, but it requires oxygen and moisture to grow on any surface. 

Mold growth typically forms colored spots or hair-like patches on various materials and surfaces both indoors and outdoors, so it is easily detectable.

Theoretically speaking, the most effective way to prevent mold growth is to keep surfaces dry all the time. However, this might not always be feasible, especially in the outdoor environments where various materials and surfaces are constantly exposed to rain and high humidity.

Regardless, mold growth looks unsightly and it can cause costly damage to buildings and the items inside it. Hence, it is important to remedy the problem as soon as it is detected.

Is it Possible to Eliminate Mold Completely?

The answer to this question is no. As already mentioned, mold is almost everywhere, so even if it that has grown on particular materials and surfaces is removed, the spores suspended in the air or settled in the dust can always cause further growth, as long as oxygen and moisture are present.

Then again, it wouldn’t be a good idea to remove all the mold, particularly from the outdoor environment, even if it were possible. This is because it plays a fundamental role when it comes to decomposing or breaking down of various dead organic matter such as lawn clippings, wood chippings, bird droppings, sewage sludge and many more.

Is Mold Growing in the Interiors of Your Commercial Space?

If you spot mold growing inside your commercial building, it is best to enlist the services of a commercial remediation service immediately.

These restoration specialists will arrive at your location to help you remove mold growths, stop and remedy damage, but also restore mold levels to normal, acceptable levels. 

Here’s a general breakdown of what to expect during commercial mold remediation:

  1. Getting in touch with mold remediation specialists
  2. Inspection and testing
  3. Containment
  4. Air sanitization
  5. Removal
  6. Cleanup

Keep in mind that no two restoration projects are similar in all aspects, so there might be some slight variations in the way your job is executed.

How to Limit Mold Growth Inside Your Commercial Building Post Remediation

Follow these practices if you want to minimize the risk of mold growth in your commercial building after completion of the remediation process:

1. Fix Water Leaks Fast

Most mold species require a considerable quantity of moisture to grow and thrive, so avoiding condensation problems in commercial bathrooms, kitchens, and other wet areas can go a long way in controlling this fungus.

Water leaks from rain and faulty plumbing create wet areas in buildings. So, make sure all leaks, be it through the walls, roof, windows, and doors, or floors are fixed immediately.

2. Ensure Proper Flow of Air within Your Building

Are you aware that buildings with poor air circulation create the perfect environment for the growth of mold?

Making sure your commercial air conditioning system is properly sized, set at the right temperature, and working properly all the time will help keep building occupants comfortable, but also minimize moisture build-up inside the building.

Also, consider using ceiling fans to help improve air circulation within your space, and avoid high humidity levels.

3. Eliminate Food Sources

Just like any other living microorganisms, mold also needs food to survive. It gets its nutrients from various organic food sources, such as paper, cardboard, wood, drywall, organic dirt layer and many more. It does not feed on inorganic materials like plastic and metal.

Therefore, removing organic material from the interiors of your commercial space is a reliable way to mitigate such infestations.

4. Use an Air Purifier

As spores can be found almost everywhere, it is important to find a means of reducing the amount of these airborne contaminants that flow in the indoor air.

In this regard, it is important to use an air purifier equipped with an appropriate air filter. An air purifier installed with a High-Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) filter can help remove spores, as well as other contaminants that may be present in the air.

SERVPRO Percy Priest/Hickory Hollow is Always Ready to Help with Your Commercial Mold Remediation

You can limit mold infestation in your commercial building by practicing the above-highlighted tips. But in case of recurrent infestation, feel free to contact us.

6 Top Spring Cleaning Tips and Tricks for Your Office

4/16/2018 (Permalink)

It’s finally starting to get warmer, and the baseball season is well underway. That means only one thing: spring is here!

While it may be exciting to bid winter goodbye and say hello to great outdoor activities, the onset of spring also spells the beginning of cleaning and de-cluttering. It may sound exhausting, but spring cleaning is necessary if you want to really enjoy the season.

And cleaning is not only for our homes and garages. Your office also needs to be on the spring-clean list. The good news is that it’s way much easier to spring clean an office than it is to clean up your home.

So, how do you go spring clean your office?

Cleaning Your Office for Spring

1. Get Rid of Desk Clutter

There’s a good chance that most of the things that take up space on your office desk are not that important. It’s either that, or they are important but misplaced and disarranged. This makes de-cluttering your desk the very first thing to do when spring cleaning your office.

To do this, sort all the items on your office desktop into three labeled categories – “shred/dump,” “back on the desktop,” and “put away.”

Once you’re done sorting them out, file the contents of the heap labeled “put away” and tuck them nicely into a cabinet or bookshelf. Reorganize the files in the “back on desktop” category and arrange them accordingly on the top of your office desk. But before you put anything back on the desk, ensure that it is clean. Shred the rest and properly dispose of them.

2. Ditch the Ink

Nothing is as frustrating as reaching out for your pen during a busy day at work, only to realize that it’s not working. Surprisingly, these types of pens out-number the functional ones in most offices. This is because every time a pen stops working, you’ll probably put it in the same place as your working pens.

This mixing of functional and non- functional pens on your office desk hinders productivity since you always have to play a game of probability every time you reach out for a pen. To solve this, go through your heap of pens and ditch the ones that don’t work.

You will be surprised at how much this simple hack can improve the convenience at your office.

3. Tray Chic

If you don’t have one, find an old tray in your home and use it to store things that you frequently use such as pencils, staplers, and tape dispensers. Also, store small books and other office items in art and document boxes.

This way, your office will be much easier to dust and clean.

4. Check the Cords

Apart from making your office clumsy, running cords can also cause accidents. With that in mind, you should have them organized and tucked nicely in a safe place.

You don’t need a lot of things for this task. Simply use binder clips to organize the cords.

5. Clean up Your E-Space

Office spring cleaning doesn’t end with eliminating unnecessary items in your physical space. You also need to get rid of clutter files that may be slowing down your computer.

To clean up your E-space, you’ll need to delete files that you no longer need. Organizing your files will also help you identify duplicates that could be eating up valuable storage space. While you’re at it, don’t forget to back up important files in a secondary location, such as the cloud, for extra security.

6. Organize Your Emails

It is quite likely that your office gets tons of emails every day. As such, your inbox is bound to overflow more than often. But this shouldn’t be an excuse for having a clumsy inbox. Make a point of organizing your emails by date or any other order you may prefer. The fact that you are the only person who gets to see them shouldn’t count as an excuse for not keeping your inbox neat.

Let SERVPRO in Percy Priest Do the Heavy Lifting

While these tips may seem simple and straightforward, they go a long way in making the beginning of spring easier and lighter for you.

However, since everybody is super-busy at the office, nobody has the time to do the actual spring cleaning. It’s a good idea to hire a cleaner to do the heavy lifting. And not just any cleaner – professional cleaners like SERVPRO.

SERVPRO is well-equipped and experienced for large-scale cleaning projects. Call us today, and get your office revamped for the spring.

How to Spring Clean Bathrooms

4/2/2018 (Permalink)

The bathroom is one of the most neglected rooms in a home, especially when it comes to spring cleaning. Most homeowners will agree that this is no simple task. It requires a lot of products, time, and strength. Let’s not forget the risk of slipping and injuring yourself.

Regardless of the excuses for not cleaning your bathroom, the germs and grime will keep accumulating and make the situation even worse. Therefore, it’s time to pick up the tools, and face the clutter and stains that were left behind by winter.

But how should you properly clean your bathroom after a long, cold winter?

Spring Cleaning Your Bathroom – Four Easy Steps

1. Clear Unwanted Clutter and Open the Windows

This should be your first course of action.

Step into your bathroom and identify anything that may hinder your cleaning process. This includes checking your bathroom cabinets, drawers, and other storage spaces. You will be surprised at how much unnecessary stuff you hoard in there. In most unkept bathrooms, these are the places that harbor germs, dust, and foul smells.

Empty everything in your drawers and throw away unnecessary items to create room for more useful things. Don’t forget to check the space behind your bathroom door.

While you’re at it, remove your area rugs, curtains, and towels. Put them together with other dirty clothes that will need washing. Don’t be tempted to throw them into the laundry machine right away. You don’t want to get distracted before you even begin cleaning your bathroom, do you?

As you remove clutter from your bathroom, you will certainly unleash a cloud of dust and foul smell in your home. To prevent this, you should open your windows for fresh air. If your bathroom doesn't have windows, open the door and turn the fan on.

2. Dusting Your Bathroom

Once your bathroom is clear of clutter and your windows are open, you can now start dusting. However, this shouldn’t be done randomly. You need to use the top-to-bottom technique to avoid messing up freshly cleaned areas.

This means that you will begin dusting high points in your bathroom, such as shelf tops, windowsills, vents, light fixtures, and mirrors, and you work your way down to the bathtubs, baseboards, and floor. For more efficiency, start from one corner of the bathroom and clean your way to the door. This ensures that no debris will be left behind. Don’t forget to remove cobwebs from corners and the ceiling.

For dusting, it is recommended to use a soft piece of cloth.

3. Scrub and Wipe

Having dusted everything, it’s time to get down to the actual scrubbing and wiping. Remove any scum that may have accumulated in your bathtub and shower stall using a scum remover, warm water, and soap.

Also, wipe the vanity and the sink using a washcloth soaked in a disinfectant. Be sure not to miss the handles and hard-to-reach areas.

Don’t forget the doors, drawers, baseboards, ceiling, door jambs, cabinets, shelves tops, drawers, and windowsills. Clean these areas using a soft piece of cloth soaked in warm, soapy water.

Also, give the mirror extra shine by wiping it down with vinegar or a glass cleaner.

4. Clean the Toilet and the Bathroom Floor

At this stage, you’ve cleaned everything but the toilet bowl and the bathroom floor. Using a toilet brush and your preferred toilet cleaner, give the inside of your toilet a thorough scrub and wait for a few minutes before you flushing.

As you wait, move to the toilet bowl’s exterior and wipe it down with a soft washcloth and disinfectant. Be sure to attend to the handles and walls. By the time you’re done cleaning the outside of your toilet bowl, your toilet will be ready to be flushed. Flush it down and watch it sparkle.

Finally, mop the floor of your bathroom and proceed to clean the bathroom curtains and mats you removed earlier. After everything is clean, restore curtains and rearrange your bathroom. If you wish, you can use an air freshener for an even cleaner feeling.

If You Need Help Spring Cleaning Your Bathroom, Call SERVPRO Hickory Hollow

If you want the easy way out, you and your friends can come together and hire SERVPRO. SERVPRO is available for large-scale cleaning projects. Our highly skilled technicians are equipped with the right cleaning equipment and products to leave your bathroom squeaky clean at a pocket-friendly price. No job is too big for us!

So what are you waiting for? Call SERVPRO for a top-to-bottom home spring cleaning.

Getting Your Business Up and Running Again with Commercial Fire Restoration

3/26/2018 (Permalink)

Nobody expects a fire outbreak at their business premises. Unfortunately, we can’t prevent them from happening. A fire disaster leaves property owners with costly repairs, business owners with significant losses, and employees without work.

While it can be daunting to come to terms with such sudden losses, it is important to take immediate recovery actions and get your business back to its pre-fire conditions. Here are steps to get your life back to normal:

4 Things to Do After Commercial Fire Damage

1. Save Important Items First

Once the fire is put off and the premise is safe to enter, you can try to prevent your items and equipment from further damage. For example, the water used to extinguish the fire can make your furniture waterlogged, damage electronics, and destroy important paperwork.

Start by saving important and easily portable items and work your way to heavier ones. But if something is too heavy for you to lift, wait for professional help. 

2. Move Undamaged Items to Safety

To facilitate easy repair and restoration, you may want to move your undamaged furniture and equipment out of the way. They may not be scorched or damaged, but they’ll still need some restoration from the soot, smoke, or water damage.

Do not pack away your items without properly cleaning or removing odor from them.

3. Remove Soot and Smoke

Different materials burn differently and may need special cleaning techniques. It’ll be difficult to remove soot and smoke from hard-to-reach areas such as the HVAC system, attics, and crawl spaces where hazardous residue usually settle.

A professional commercial restoration company will provide you with the much-needed soot and smoke removal services and ensure that your business premise is back to its original conditions.

4. Contact Your Insurer

It is important for business owners to notify their insurer of any fire damage. You need to provide the time and date of the occurrence, a fire report copy that is signed by relevant authorities, the extent of the fire damage, and the repairs needed.

5. Call a Commercial Restoration Expert

Restoration experts are highly-skilled professionals with top-of-the-line cleaning tools and equipment who will help you get your business premises back to its original state.

When restoration experts arrive at your commercial property they will:

  • Assess the damage: The technicians will examine the extent of the damage. This usually involves looking at how far the smoke, fire, and soot have traveled as well as how badly your equipment and furniture have been affected. Assessing the damage will help the technicians come up with a restoration plan and estimate the cost and duration of the restoration.
  • Tarp and seal: During the restoration, one of the main priorities is preventing further damage. Most of the after-fire damage is caused by the water used to extinguish the fire or from burst pipes. In this case, the fire restoration company will first drain the standing water or stop the source of running water to prevent further damage.
  • Clean up: The restoration company will then clean away the soot, dust, and smoke on the building surfaces. They will also remove the smoke odor in the building and leave it smelling fresh. If you have carpets and commercial upholstery that were undamaged, they’ll be thoroughly cleaned and disinfected. For items that were badly destroyed and can’t be repaired, they’ll be properly disposed of.
  • Repaint, repair, and renovate: This stage involves the actual restoring of items and repairing of the fire damage. The walls are repainted, wallpaper put up, new carpets installed, and damaged building structures are repaired and renovated. The idea at this stage is to have your items and buildings looking as good as new.

With excellent restoration services, you don’t have to rebuild from scratch – this will take you a lot of time and money. Moreover, keep in mind that there are so many people who are dependent on your business. You can be able to get your life and that of your employees back to normal with a quick and more affordable way – that’s restoration.

Take Prompt Action with SERVPRO’s Commercial Restoration Services in Nashville

If your commercial building is in need of restoration services after a fire disaster, do not hesitate to call SERVPRO. Our experienced technicians will guide you through the whole process and take care of your restoration.

Our services are fast and top-notch – you’ll not be disappointed.

What to Do After a Commercial Water Disaster

3/12/2018 (Permalink)

The harsh truth is that a water damage disaster can occur at any time – day or night.

In such an unfortunate circumstance, you may be forced to close down your business for a while as you try to get things back in order. You will certainly incur significant losses in terms of productivity and revenue.

If you fail to handle the commercial water damage properly and early, you can be faced with more losses and property destruction.

Fortunately, if you stay calm and take the right steps to mitigate the damage, you can save yourself a lot of stress and money. Knowing what these steps are, makes the difference between having to rebuild afresh and doing a few repairs.

So, what should you do after a commercial water disaster?

4 Important Things to Do After Commercial Water Damage

1. Switch Off the Main Power Supply

After a water disaster, the last thing you want is more emergencies. If you don’t switch off the power, you risk getting yourself or your employees electrocuted.

Maybe you will be smart enough to avoid the electrocution, but what about the risk of a fire outbreak?  We all know that water plus electricity equals double trouble.

If you are not able to safely switch off the power, unplug all your electrical appliances from their sockets and move them to higher areas of the room like counters or office desks to prevent them from coming into contact with water.

2. Use Disinfectant When Necessary

If the flooding in your commercial building is caused by a burst sewer pipe (which is usually the case), avoid drying the water with a rag. We know that you may want to get things back in order as soon as possible, but this is not the way to go.

The water is full of bacteria and harmful to your health. Instead, use a disinfectant on hard surfaces such as furniture and leave the general clean up to professionals.

3. Salvage and Dry Important Items

When your business property is affected by water damage, mold and mildew are things you’ll certainly worry about. Moreover, the more your furniture and equipment stay in the water-logged building, the more they get damaged.

You will need to take out wet items to dry and prevent mold growth. Do not stress about the walls or ceilings at this point. Just focus on saving what you can actually salvage from the situation. Also, ensure you save important paperwork and backup your electronic data (in case you didn’t).

4. Contact Your Insurance Provider

You need to notify your insurer of the water damage shortly after the disaster strikes. Be sure to describe the degree of damage, when happened, and the required repairs.

Provide as many details as you can, because this will be useful when seeking compensation. Sometimes, insurers may ask for photographs and videos of the damaged items as proof. So, ensure you document the damage before you start moving things.

5. Seek Commercial Restoration Services

You may have sun-dried some of your wet items, but this is not enough. They still need to be disinfected and given a proper restoration. Moreover, things like removing molds on walls and ceilings will require some professional expertise.

This is where SERVPRO comes to your rescue. This well-trained and equipped team will drain excess water from your premises and completely dry the whole place. They will also assess the extent of the damage and make necessary repairs. 

Additionally, they will have your property smelling fresh with their top-of-the-line odor removal techniques. With their excellent and affordable services, you will not need to rebuild afresh. That’s too expensive and time-consuming – a simple restoration from experts will do. 

Get Custom Commercial Restoration Services in Percy Priest

Each and every business is unique in its own way. This means that water damage restoration may vary from one commercial property to another.

At SERVPRO, we align our restoration regime with the specific needs of particular business premises. As a result, we have managed to provide top-notch services to our clients over the years.

No job is too small or too big for us. If you experience any water damage in your workplace, do not hesitate to call us. We are always available for you.

How to Prevent Commercial Fires

2/26/2018 (Permalink)

Non-residential fires have been quite common in the recent years. Not only does this entail a big loss of money, it will also cause a big dent on your company’s reputation if all stakeholders are not handled properly.

Fires need an ignition, oxygen, and readily combustible materials to start. To prevent being one of the statistics, you need to ensure the ignition sources do not in contact with combustible materials.

Check your commercial building for the following:

  • Flammable liquids: Store all flammable liquids in cool, dry places and far from heating sources. It is also advisable to label the containers of these flammable liquids.
  • Flammable debris: You need to store items like wood, trash, paper, and rags away from heat sources.
  • Landscaping: Ensure you trim your overgrown shrubs and remove all the weeds. A well-maintained lawn can help stop the spread of fires.

For you to keep your commercial building and its tenants safe, consider the following tips:

  • Install fire alarms: When a fire occurs, smoke detectors and fire alarms are the first line of defense. Ensure your alarm system meets the regulatory requirements. You should also create a clear emergency exit for your building’s occupants to use when the sirens go off.
  • Install suppression systems and extinguishers: Extinguishers can help you manage small fires and prevent them from spreading. Suppression systems, on the other hand, can prevent large-scale fire damage. Schedule regular maintenance for your extinguisher and suppression systems. Store extinguishers in open and accessible spaces like the corridors.
  • Lighting: In case of a fire, your building should be adequately lit to help occupants exit the building safely.
  • Conduct fire drills: These drills will help your employees know what to do in the event a fire occurs. This will reduce the extent of the fire damage and you may not need to call the fire department.

Get Expert Commercial Fire Restoration Services from SERVPRO in Percy Priest

Watching your building ravaged by fire is a traumatic experience. After such devastation, your reassurance will come from having excellent support and guidance from experts.

From water removal to soot repairs, SERVPRO is the competent fire restoration company near you.  We understand that your business is your livelihood and we’ll work to ensure it is up and running in no time.

How Long Does Fire Restoration Take?

2/19/2018 (Permalink)

A fire can leave extensive damage to your home. The experience can be overwhelming for both you and your family.

Restoration technicians are equipped with the right equipment and are trained to assess fire damage and restore what’s left of your home.

You might be worried about how long the fire restoration will take – who wouldn’t want to get their life back together in the shortest time possible?

The duration of the restoration process depends on the severity of the fire damage, the extent of the smoke damage, the amount of water used to extinguish the fire, and how much soot repair is needed.

Professional fire restoration technicians should give you a clear timeframe after assessing the fire damage.

Fire Restoration vs. Rebuilding

After a fire disaster, you might be thinking about starting afresh.

Seek the services of a professional restoration company like SERVPRO and have your home back to normal in no time.

Can You Restore Your Home Yourself? 

Fire damage restoration may seem easy, but it requires skill and precision. You’ll also need some specialized equipment like humidifiers and air movers which are expensive to buy or rent. Let’s not forget that restoring the whole house can be daunting for you and your family.

One of the major challenges with fire restoration is the fact that you have to deal different types of damages including water, soot, and smoke damage. You probably don’t have the expertise needed to deal with all these situations.

You’re better off hiring professionals with the right equipment and expertise to handle these situations and make your home a healthy and livable space.

In fact, the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) has set strict standards that fire restoration companies need to follow to ensure properties are adequately restored.

SERVPRO in Hickory Hollow Offers Top-Notch Fire Restoration

We are equipped with state-of-the-art tools, equipment, and cleaning products. You’ll also love our skilled and enthusiastic staff who’ll do a thorough job in your home.

Upon assessing the situation, our technicians will give you an estimation of the cost and how long the whole process will take. We are available 24/7!

What Should You Do After a Fire Disaster in Your Home?

2/12/2018 (Permalink)

We all hope that a fire never occurs in our homes. However, it is important to be prepared, just in case. 

The stress of figuring out what to do next can be overwhelming. In most cases, confusion takes over, and you often find yourself unsure of what to do.

In the unfortunate event your house is a victim of a fire disaster, here’s what you need to do:

1. Take Care of Yourself and Your Family

After a fire disaster, your family will need a warm and comforting place to stay temporarily. You can find shelter at your closest friend’s/relative’s place or a hotel if your insurance policy includes a temporary housing clause. 

It is also recommended that you have yourself and your family checked by a doctor. 

Also, watch out for fatigue and stress. 

Talk to your kids about what happened.

Don’t forget to contact your loved ones to tell them that you are safe. You should also contact your post office and other delivery services and notify them on your temporary change of address.

2. Contact Your Insurance Provider ASAP

Following a fire incident, your phone will be buzzing with calls from contractors and public adjusters who will be trying to offer you deals. 

It is advisable to ignore them and focus on contacting your insurance agent, with whom you will discuss your options.

3. Separate Undamaged Property from Damaged Property

Your insurance provider will require a detailed list of your damaged property. Therefore, you should act quickly to sort out your property and take note of what has been lost and damaged in the fire. 

Your inventory list should include the purchase date,  price, brand name, model, and a serial number of each item.  

Do not forget to indicate items that were given to you as gifts. It is highly advisable to attach receipts to your inventory list. 

Photos and videos of the damaged items can be useful if you are unable to get the receipts.

4. Check out SERVPRO in Nashville

Restoration is less expensive and faster than rebuilding. Therefore, your next step should be calling a reliable restoration company. 

There are a few trustworthy fire and cleanup restoration companies out there, and SERVPRO is one of them. We are experts in fire restoration, soot repair, and reversing the effects of smoke damage.

We are also trusted frontrunners in the restoration industry who can handle disasters of any size.

Fire Restoration: How to Restore Your Home to its Pre-Fire Condition

2/5/2018 (Permalink)

The fire trucks have just left, and everything is either damaged by the fire, is sooty, or soaked in water. 

You are wondering who you’ll call to help you salvage what is left of your once beautiful property. 

Do not despair, SERVPRO is here to help! 

We have a 24/7 service line and experienced professionals who work with the utmost precision to clean up your home and restore it to its pre-fire condition, saving you the ultimate cost of rebuilding.

We’ll also get rid of the pervasive smoke odor and deep-clean soot from your carpets and upholstery, leaving your home looking and smelling like the fire never happened!

Expert Fire Restoration from SERVPRO    

A typical restoration process includes the following steps:

Step 1: Emergency Contact

Contacting SERVPRO Percy Priest is the first step to getting your life back together. Following a series of questions regarding the fire incident, we will dispatch our nearest professionals with the appropriate resources.

Step 2: Inspection and Fire Damage Assessment

To formulate a suitable plan of action, our professionals will inspect adjoining rooms of your home to assess the full extent of the fire, soot, and smoke damage.

Step 3: Immediate Board-up and Roof-tarp Services

To protect your property against further damage, our professionals will board up damaged windows and walls. They’ll also place tarps on ruined roofs.

Step 4: Water Removal

This process involves removing the water left behind by the firefighters. It also entails the use of air movers and dehumidifiers to dry your home thoroughly.

Step 5: Smoke Damage Restoration and Soot Repair

We use specialized equipment and methods to remove smoke and soot remnants from walls, ceilings, and other surfaces.

Step 6: Cleaning and Sanitization

Using unique cleaning techniques, top-of-the-line equipment, and industrial air scrubbers, we’ll perform a comprehensive clean-up on all your belongings.

Step 7: Restoration

This is the final step in the process and typically entails getting your property back to its pre-fire condition. Minor repairs such as painting, installation of new carpets, replacing drywall are part of this process. If necessary, significant repairs such as minor reconstruction can be performed.

What to Do in Case of Water Damage in Your Home

1/29/2018 (Permalink)

It’s quite unnerving that the water we require for our existence can sometimes be so destructive.

From thawing snow to hurricanes and typhoons, water is a force to reckon with.

But what about that small leak in your home?

Can this humble and often-overlooked water problem cause any serious damages?

You’ll be surprised that even the smallest of leaks can greatly affect your house’s structural condition, especially if it goes undetected for a long time.

Before handling a water problem in your home, you need to know the common signs of water damage:

Key Signs of Water Damage in Your Home

One of the most common signs of water damage in your home is the discoloration of the ceilings and walls.

The stain usually appears brownish or yellowish, and its size is aligned with the extent of the water damage. In some cases, the paint on the wall might start peeling off or some tiny bubbles might start to form. For the parts that are made of iron, you may notice some rust on them.

Wooden floors may also show signs of water damage. Infiltration of water into the wooden floors results into buckling. This is where the wooden floor detaches from the ground and curves upwards or warps.

But the most crucial area is the house’s foundation.

Once water gets into the foundation, it weakens the entire structure and can make the entire house to collapse – water damage can lead to the total destruction of your home.

Whether you have leaky pipes or a flooded home, it is always recommended to call for professional water damage restoration professionals.

Contact SERVPRO in Hickory Hollow for Quick and Top-Notch Restoration Services

After you experience a water disaster in your home, you’ll be so heartbroken to do a proper clean up and restoration by yourself. You’ll need help!

And that’s why SERVPRO is here. We are a leading and reputable company in the restoration and cleaning industry. We will make sure that most of your household items are restored and are back in good condition. This way, you wouldn’t have to replace them.

What to Do in Case of Commercial Water Damage

1/22/2018 (Permalink)

Water can cause severe damage to your commercial building.

Some of the common problems include destruction of equipment, degradation of important documents, water-logged carpets and furniture, dampness which subsequently leads to mold, discoloration of painted walls – the list is endless.

The damage is not only traumatic, but will also cost you a huge amount of money for repairs, especially if you run a business that depends on certain equipment and tools.

If you have a flooded commercial building, chances are, you are not going to sit around with the water on your things.

Good thing, there are a few things you can do to mitigate the damage.

3 Important Things to Do in Case of Commercial Water Damage

1. Prioritize Your Safety and That of Your Employees

First things first, assess the situation.

Are there any live wires anywhere near the area affected by water? Is the floor you are standing on still stable to support your weight?

A water disaster in your business premises presents a serious threat of electrocution and can saturate and weaken your floorboards.

If the situation seems unsafe, it is always best to exit the building and wait for the professionals. Nothing is worth your life!

2. Save Your Valuables

If your flooded building seems safe to use, cautiously enter and try to retrieve your business’ valuables such as documents and expensive electronics that can be salvaged.

Before you start removing large items from the building, ensure you take photos and videos of the water damage for insurance purposes.

You can also ask your employees to help remove some furniture and other important office items. These items will need to be taken out of the flooded building at some point in the restoration process, so it won’t hurt to start early and minimize the damage.

3. Call the Pros

The longer standing water stays on your floor, the more damage it will cause to your building and equipment. It is, therefore, necessary to call professional restoration experts for help.

Call SERVPRO for Emergency Water Damage Restoration in Hickory Hollow

If you are struggling with commercial water damage, then seek the services of a reputable restoration company. Failing to do this may completely damage your equipment and items, and you may be needed to replace them.

At SERVPRO, we understand that you want to get your business up and running in the shortest time possible. That’s why we offer top-notch restoration and cleaning services 24/7. You can always count on us!

How to Prevent Frozen Water Pipes in the Winter

1/15/2018 (Permalink)

Bag packed, check. Vehicle fueled, check.

If you are planning a vacation to escape the winter, keep in mind that your home will still have to brave the cold.

The water in your pipes can freeze at the low temperatures and cause the pipes to burst.

The next thing you know, you are coming back to a water-logged home.

How do you prevent this from happening?

Most people use antifreeze compounds in their water pipes during the winter.

But this is a really bad idea.

Antifreeze has been established as a notorious and hazardous pollutant that not only damages your lawn but is also harmful to your family’s health.

So what are the proper ways of protecting your pipes from the freezing and bursting during the winter?

2 Super-Easy Ways of Preventing Frozen Water Pipes During the Winter

Keep Your Home Warm

Set the indoor temperatures above 550F at all times. This will ensure your pipes remain warm and prevent the water inside from freezing.

It is, however, important to note that this will increase your home’s energy bills, something that can be easily resolved.

Keeping your heating systems running even when you are away may seem to be costly, but it will save you a lot of money in repairs and replacements in the event your home is damaged by water.

Keep the Taps Slightly Opened

This is perhaps the easiest way of preventing frozen water pipes during the winter. The continuous flow prevents the water from stagnating and ultimately freezing.

Moreover, this method won’t have any significant impact on your water bills. Nonetheless, you should ensure that you maintain the amount of water trickling out of your taps at an absolute minimum.

But what should you do if you already have a water damage in your home caused by a pipe burst?

You Can Count on SERVPRO Water Damage Restoration in Nashville

Nobody likes to clean up and restore their homes after it has been hit by a water disaster. In fact, most homeowners would prefer to have all the damaged items replaced.

But you don’t have to spend all that money on replacements. You can leave the cumbersome strenuous work to the water damage restoration professionals like SERVPRO. We are equipped with state-of-the-art restoration equipment and highly trained technicians to offer top-notch services.

With SERVPRO, you can rest assured that your home will be back to pre-disaster condition before you know it.

How to Prevent Water Damage in the Winter

1/3/2018 (Permalink)

Many homeowners have past experiences dealing with water damage.

If you have been fortunate enough to avoid a water disaster, then you have probably heard some horror stories from your family and friends about burst water pipes and flooded basements.

In fact, such experiences are so common that home water damage is one of the major reasons why Americans file insurance claims for their homes. 

The winter is an especially dangerous season for water leaks and floods.

Apart from the year-round drainage threats that are always lurking, you have to deal with frozen pipes, snow buildup, and thawing ice.

5 Ways to Prevent Winter Water Damage in Your Home

Take the following steps and avoid filing a claim this winter season.

1. Have your Drainage System Inspected

Hire a professional inspector to examine your water supply system, washing machine, refrigerator, and other appliances.

In most cases, water supply lines will last for only five years before they need replacement. Steel-braided and rubber hose, however, tend to last longer. 

2. Clear Snow from Your Foundation

Ice and snow build up around your home can damage the structure of your foundation and pose a threat to the stability of your house.

Make sure you regularly check for snow build up around your home and clear it as soon as possible. Also, entry points like ground windows should be properly locked and sealed to prevent thawing snow from leaking into the basement and cause flooding.

3. Clear Your Gutters and Downspouts

Debris like snow and leaves can block your gutters and create ice dams on your roof. This can ultimately destroy the roof due to the excessive pressure.

When the winter is in full swing, it may prove challenging to clean your gutters and downspouts. It is recommended to hire a contractor.

4. Install a Pipe Leak Detector

Sometimes, leaks may occur within the walls or ceiling and go undetected for a long time until they cause a serious damage. Fortunately, there’s a solution to this.

A pipe detection device has sensors that will alert you of any water pipe leaks. This device will prevent a major water damage to your home.

5. Prepare Your Home for Your Winter Getaway

If you have planned to head somewhere warmer this winter season, remember that your home is suffering in the winter cold.

You wouldn’t want to come back to a flooded home, would you?

So shut off the main water supply to prevent flooding and set the heat to moderate to prevent pipe freezing and bursts.

Call Professional Water Damage Restoration Experts in Percy Priest

In the unfortunate event your home is damaged by water, you don’t have to despair. You also don’t have to replace all your water-logged items.

Call SERVPRO for quick and professional water damage restoration services.

Leaving Home for the Holidays? 3 Ways to Prevent Water Damage

12/22/2017 (Permalink)

The holiday season is a great time to unwind and relax with friends and family.

It’s the time to love, give, and show appreciation to people around you. Ideally, it is also the time when everything should go right. This means no emergencies, no accidents, or injuries.

However, we all know that life isn’t that ideal.

Preventing Water Damage During the Holidays

So, whether you are going for an obligatory holiday dinner at your in-laws or escaping the winter by heading down south, here are ways to prevent water damage to your home when you are away:

1. General Maintenance

Before going for holiday, ensure that you set aside some time and do a quick inspection of your drainage system. If you noticed any leaks or damages, ensure that they are repaired as soon as possible.

In addition, clean all the gutters and downspouts extensions before you leave.

2. Shut off Major Electrical Components

This will significantly reduce your energy costs when you are away.

Unplug the electrical appliances that will not be in use and set a few lights on a timer. This will give an impression that somebody is occupying the home and discourage burglars.

However, don’t switch off the thermostat because low temperatures can freeze and break your water pipes. Lower your thermostat to around 55F – this should reduce the risk of water damage to your home.

3. Shut off Water Valves

The most common sources of home water damage include washing machines, ice makers, toilets, and dishwashers. Shutting off individual water valves should help prevent water damage.

The shutoff valves to most appliances, faucets, and toilets are usually found on the supply lines.

You can also shut off the main water valve to stop water from coming into your home for the period you’ll be away. The main water valve is located at the water meter. This is a good way to prevent major pipe leaks and floods.

Hire Water Damage Restoration Experts in Nashville

Water damage, especially during the holiday season, can be overwhelming.

But you have the option of hiring professional water damage restoration experts like SERVPRO in Nashville. SERVPRO has highly-skilled professionals, top-of-the-line equipment, and innovative cleaning products to get the work done in the shortest time possible.

We are a 24/7 emergency restoration and home cleaning experts that you can count on this holiday season.

Holiday Guest Preparation Tips from Home Cleaning Experts in Hickory Hollow

12/18/2017 (Permalink)

The holiday season is in full swing, and along with the holidays come our beloved guests.

Whether a weekend party or just a weeknight family dinner, hosting friends and family members in your home is always a great experience.

However, preparation for these guests can be overwhelming and stressful.

If you are frantically running around trying to figure out where to start, here are some great tips that will make your hosting one of the best:

Guest Preparation and Home Cleaning Tips During the Holiday

1. Bed and Breakfast Comfort

If your guests are spending the night, you’ll want them to get that five-star experience. Even though your house may not be big and luxurious, you can still pull this off. Just ensure you do the following:

  • Clean out the guest’s room so that it’s neat and welcoming.
  • Ensure you have fresh and clean sheets and duvets, and a couple of extra pillows.
  • Open the windows for fresh air.
  • Set a couple of books and magazines that your guests may love reading before bed.
  • Give your guest some privacy, especially in the evenings and early in the mornings.

2. Prepare the Bathrooms

Ensure that you remove all your personal items from the bathroom that your guests will use. Your old towel and your used hairbrush are not exactly welcoming to them. 

Make your bathroom spick and span and make sure it smells amazing.

3. Take the Sniff Test of Your Home

Did you know that you cannot discern the true scent of your home?

This makes it really difficult to know how the house exactly smells. Is it good or bad? You can make sure it's smelling fresh by:

  • Using great smelling cleaning products.
  • Using air fresheners.
  • Lighting a scented candle.
  • Making sure all the pets are clean.

4. Light Up Your Home

Your deck or patio is a nice spot to host guests in your home. You can extend the time your guests spend outside by ensuring that your outdoors are properly illuminated. You can use overheard lights such as dimmers to bring out that warm cozy feeling.

5. Clear Out the Front Porch

On a normal day, you might have unsightly objects such as old chairs or your child’s toys on your porch and not feel bothered about them.  But if you have guests on their way, you need to remove them right away.

Your front porch is important for first impressions. These impressions will stick with your guests whether or not your interiors are tidy.

Running Out of Time? Call Home Cleaning Experts in Hickory Hollow

At SERVPRO, we know that hosting your friends and family is a big deal. But with all the shopping everything you have to do in the kitchen, who has the time for some tiring holiday cleaning?

With SERVPRO, you don’t have to worry about mopping the floors or making the bathroom sparkling clean. Get in touch with us today!

3 C’s to Holiday Fire Prevention in Percy Priest

12/11/2017 (Permalink)

Residential fires during the holidays are more frequent, more fatal, and more costly.

In fact, according to a U.S. Fire Administration’s report, open-flame fires cases are more than double on Christmas day, and triple on New Year’s Day. What’s more, fire property loss during the holidays is 34% greater and the number of fatalities is 70% higher.

This means that the holiday season is a risky time for you and your family.

Here are three common causes of home holiday fires and ways you can prevent them.

3 Common Causes of Holiday Fires and Ways to Prevent Them

1. Candles

According to a report by the National Fire Protection Association, the most probable days for candle fires to occur in our homes are Halloween, Christmas Eve, Christmas, New Year’s, and New Year’s Eve.

To prevent such fires, ensure that a burning candle in your home is away from anything flammable. Cover your candles with hurricane globes and set on sturdy surfaces. In addition, never leave burning candles unattended.

If you don’t want to have a constant candle fire scare, you can consider investing in a flameless LED candles.

2. Christmas Trees

Christmas trees (especially dry ones) are known to be a top cause of residential fires during the holidays.

When cutting down a Christmas trees, be sure to do it at least one inch from the ground to encourage water absorption. Make it a habit to water your tree when it’s in use.

Also, ensure that it is at least 3 feet from any source of heat and doesn’t block the exit. Replace worn out tree lights and turn them off when you go to bed.

More importantly, remember to dispose of dried-out trees when the merry-making season is over.

Alternatively, you can use a fire-resistant Christmas tree for the holidays.

3. Cooking

Have you ever been distracted from the kitchen and left food on the stove only to be reminded by a pungent smell of burning food?  

This has happened to a lot of people.

According to the USFA, one of the most common causes of holiday fires is food left unattended.

Apart from being alert when cooking, ensure that your kitchen is equipped with an extinguisher, smoke detectors, and fire sprinklers.

Moreover, since cooking is usually intense during the holiday season, you should take more precautionary measures. For instance, deep-fry your turkey outside and keep all flammable items away from the source of heat.

Contact Emergency Restoration Experts in Percy Priest

In the unfortunate event your home has a fire, it’s best that you try to get your life back together in the shortest time possible. This is crucial for your psychological and financial well-being.

SERVPRO is a leading fire emergency restoration company in Percy Priest. With our professional services, your home will be sparkling clean in no time.

When a fire breaks out, you should first ensure that everybody is out of the house and then call the fire department as soon as possible.

Stay safe this holiday season.

Winter Cleaning Checklist for a Spotless Home

11/27/2017 (Permalink)

Winter Cleaning Checklist for a Spotless Home

Most people consider winter to be the cleanest and least-dusty season of the year and, therefore, do not engage in home cleaning as thoroughly as they do in the warmer seasons.

While winters are indeed less dusty than other seasons, this does not mean that your house is a dust-free haven. You home will still need a good scrub.

Here are some home cleaning tips you should consider this winter.

3 Home Cleaning Tips for You This Winter Season

1. Don’t Forget Your Summer Appliances

Summer home appliances like the ceiling fan and the HVAC system, should not be left to accumulate dust and dirt over the winter period.

Ensure you give your ceiling blade a clean wipe. For the HVAC system, it is recommended that you get professionals like SERVPRO to properly clean it. 

2. Clean the Furnace and Change the Air Filters

Before you fire up the furnace this winter, ensure it is clean. Regular cleaning and maintenance will save you a lot of cash on furnace repairs.

Clean air filters improve the air quality of your home. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recommends replacement of air filters at least twice per year regardless of the season.

3. Clean and Prepare Your Fridge for the Winter

You need to stock up your fridge with enough food for the winter. But before you do this, ensure that you give it a thorough clean.

Moreover, check to see whether essential components like the coils are working properly.

4. Clean the Soot

If you have a fireplace in your home, you definitely have soot all over your windows and walls, and this will make your home unsightly. For slight soot stains, you can use vinegar and water.

However, for stubborn stains, it’s best you seek the services of a professional. You can trust SERVPRO for such cleaning projects.

Leave the Tedious Winter Chores to SERVPRO and Enjoy Your Holiday

Winter home cleaning is a time-consuming and tedious chore.

Why not call SERVPRO to do the job for you? We are a leading home cleaning and emergency restoration company in Hickory Hollow and are equipped with state-of-the-art equipment, cleaning products, and a highly skilled staff. Feel free to contact us today!

Holiday Home Safety Tips from Emergency Restoration Experts in Nashville

11/27/2017 (Permalink)

Where will you be heading to this holiday season?

Out of the country? To a friend’s place? To a family get-together?  To a five-star hotel?

Unless you’ll be hosting guests, chances are, you’ll be away from home during the holidays.

But how safe will your house be when you’ll be on vacation?

These ideas should help you in safeguarding your home when you’re away:

3 Ways of Keeping Your Home Safe During the Holidays

1. Keep Your Traveling Plans on a Need to Know Basis

When going for vacation, you’ll want everybody to know about it. But not so fast.

Announcing your absence to everyone can be a safety hazard. It can expose your home to danger by attracting people with ulterior motives such as burglars.

Don’t forget to cancel or forward your daily deliveries such as newspapers, magazines, and groceries for the entire period you’ll be absent.

2. Ask Your Neighbors to Be on the Look Out

Inform a trusted neighbor about your trip. They will be able to notify you or the relevant authorities in case they notice any suspicious activity in your home.

And if you have understanding neighbors, you can also ask them to ensure that your home doesn’t show any signs of your absence by shoveling away snow from the driveway.

3. Turn off All Electric Appliances

Statistics from the U.S. Fire Department shows that cases of fires caused by electricity spike during the holiday season.

A faulty electronic appliance or a single naked wire could set off a fire in your home. Ensure that your electrical system is inspected and repaired before heading out.

Also, make sure you have all the lights and appliances switched off to prevent sudden power surges from destroying them.

SERVPRO Offers Quick and Efficient Home Cleaning Services in Nashville

It is also important to do some holiday cleaning and leave your home clean and orderly before heading out.

But there’s a big possibility you’ll be strained on time – considering the fact that you’ll have to pack, book flights, and make reservations.

But worry not. SERVPRO is here to save your day.

We are a leading home cleaning and emergency restoration company in Nashville. Contact us today for quick and professional services.

Holiday Emergency Preparation Tips from SERVPRO

11/20/2017 (Permalink)

The holiday season is that time of the year filled with joy and happiness as friends and family get together to engage in the festivities.

While you indulge yourself in the merrymaking, ensure you are prepared for any emergency that can occur during the holidays.

3 Top Holiday Emergency Preparation Tips in Nashville

1. Ensure Kids with Allergies Have Identification Tags

What is a holiday without some cool gifts? Often, your kids will get tasty treats, and because they love sweet things, they may end up taking something that will flare up their allergies. You wouldn’t want your child spending his/her holiday in the hospital, would you?

And since you wouldn’t want to be perceived by your visitors as the weird overprotective parent who supervises each gift a kid receives, you can use small (but noticeable) identification tags to indicate that your kid is allergic to a particular foodstuff.

2. Keep Electrical Appliances Away

With your home full of people during the holidays, you need to make sure that your kids and guests are not exposed to any hazardous elements such as electric appliances.

Ensure that all appliances are working properly and keep all small unused electric appliances in locked cabinets before your little champ gets electrocuted. Also, make sure you remove all holiday lights from once the festivities are done.

3. Conduct the Holiday Cleaning in an Orderly Manner

Before your guests arrive at your home, you need to do some thorough cleaning.

We know you don’t like doing this (who does?), that’s why we are here to offer you a helping hand. At SERVPRO, we have state-of-the-art cleaning equipment and products that will leave your home spotless.

Moreover, after you are done with the festivities, don’t jumble everything in a monstrous heap. Call SERVPRO Nashville.

Let Professionals Handle Your Holiday Cleaning in Nashville

The holiday season is a time to make merry and relax. It’s such a buzzkill when you think about all the cleaning that you have to do.

With SERVPRO, your holidays just got better. From carpet cleaning, to repainting your walls, to mold remediation, and air duct cleaning, we’ve got you covered. And if there is a fire or water emergency abruptly occurs during this season, SERVPRO has quick emergency restoration services that you can count on.

Call us today!

A Guide on How to Prepare Your Home for Visitors This Holiday Season

11/13/2017 (Permalink)

A Guide on How to Prepare Your Home for Visitors This Holiday Season

The best thing about being at home is enjoying priceless moments with friends and family. Opening your home to others creates a sense of connection that every person yearns for.

When you have guests over, you’ll have the instincts of making them as comfortable as possible. With proper planning and preparation, you can make them feel at home.

3 Easy Tips by Home Cleaning Experts in Percy Priest that Will Make Your Visitors Feel at Home

Some of the things that will guarantee your visitors a pleasurable stay at your home include:

1. Stocking Up on the Essentials

If you are having guest over, basic necessities are a must. If they are sleeping over, ensure you have fresh and clean sheets, pillows, towels, and a free shelf.

You should also provide them with personal items such as toiletries and razors.

2. Have Some Interesting Activities Lined Up

Since your guests are in a new environment, they’ll probably shy away from doing a lot of stuff that they usually do. Lighten up the mood with some board games, movies, discussions, and/or drinks.

Such activities will make them more comfortable and relaxed. The main aim is making them feel at home, right? There’s no better way to do it.

3. Prepare a Scrumptious Meal Plan

Visitors will expect to eat something better than what they usually have. Think outside the box and think of cuisines that your friends and family love.

Also, different people have different eating habits. So, ensure that you have snacks and easy-to-make meals available in the kitchen.

4. Keep Your Home Clean

Your guest will love staying in a clean and spotless house. This means that you are faced with the daunting task of some home cleaning. But this shouldn’t stress you. SERVPRO has your back!

We offer top-notch home cleaning services in Percy Priest. 

Let SERVPRO Handle All Your Holiday Cleaning

With these awesome tips, you’ll definitely have memorable moments with your friends and family. The holidays have never been this fun.

For efficient home cleaning services, ensure you contact SERVPRO Percy Priest. We’ll have your home spotless in no time.

Restore Your Home with SERVPRO this Holiday Season

11/6/2017 (Permalink)

With the holidays around the corner, it’s time to get your cleaning groove on.

We know that this is not how you’ll want to spend the holidays. That’s why you need help from home cleaning professionals in Percy Priest.

Nonetheless, here are some major areas that you need to work on for your holiday cleaning:

5 Holiday Home Cleaning Tips from Restoration Experts in Percy Priest       

1. Give Your Entryway a Good Scrub       

First impressions are always important.

You need to wipe down the front door and give your doormat a good wash. Moreover, your exterior walls and windows should be cleaned accordingly.

2. Focus on the Kitchen   

In many families, it’s a tradition to gather around the dining table and have delicious holiday meals. For this reason, you’ll need to ensure your kitchen is not only clean but also smells nice. Cleaning your kitchen can be quite overwhelming and it’s recommended that you seek professional help.   

4. Don’t Forget the Bathrooms   

Making the bathroom spotless is a daunting task. To effectively removal stubborn on sinks and tiles, call SERVPRO of Percy Priest. We’ll not only clean your bathroom, but also inspect your sewer lines and clear them out (if necessary).

5. Remove Bad Odor

Sometimes there are those lingering smells that just won’t go away even after thoroughly cleaning your home.  While you could use air fresheners to freshen up the atmosphere inside your home, this is never an effective method since it wears off quickly. You can reinforce this by making a cup of coffee – the glorious aroma always does the trick.    

Do You Need Quick Home Cleaning Services? SERVPRO Has Your Back   

If you don’t know where to start with your holiday cleaning, it’s best that you seek the services of SERVPRO of Percy Priest.

Apart from having extensive experience and top-notch cleaning equipment and products, we have a highly-skilled and friendly staff that you’ll just love to work with. Whether you need a major emergency restoration or just need help with your holiday cleaning, don’t hesitate to call us.

We’ll be glad to offer you that much-needed helping hand.

Fire Damage? How SERVPRO Fire Restoration in Percy Priest Can Help

10/23/2017 (Permalink)

It is quite surprising that a lot of homeowners in Percy Priest are still not conversant with fire restoration services.

Fire restoration companies like SERVPRO have highly trained professionals who can help get your home back to its normal state after a fire tragedy.

Now that you know, never go through the pain of cleaning up yourself. Call SERVPRO and let us offer you a helping hand.

How Will SERVPRO Fire Restoration in Percy Priest Help You?

Our fire restoration process is quick and easy:

Step 1: Contact us via our emergency number

Step 2: Fire damage assessment

Step 3: Efficient drying and water removal

Step 4: Soot and smoke removal

Step 5: Thorough cleanup and repair

Step 6: Top-notch restoration

Ways to Prevent Fires in Your Percy Priest Home

To prevent another fire in your home, here’s what you need to do:

  • Ensure your heating system is regularly serviced by a professional.
  • Your dryer filter develops lint every time you use it. So ensure you remove the lint regularly so that it doesn’t end up in the heating coils and cause a fire.
  • Keep piles of leaves and firewood far away from your garage or near your house.
  • Don’t use plug-in power bars or outlet extenders which are likely to overload electrical circuits. If you have any old and damaged appliances cords, replace them.
  • Cooking oil is one of the riskiest substances in your kitchen. Make sure you store it away from the stove.
  • Ensure you properly extinguish cigarette butts which, when left unattended, can smoulder for quite some time and start a fire.

SERVPRO Provides Fire Restoration in Percy Priest

A fire disaster in your home can cause a lot of damage if you don’t take precautions. Although you may get compensation from your insurance provider, not all the damaged property will be covered.

SERVPRO professionals have the experience to restore your home to what it used to be before the fire. Our services are quick and top-notch – you won’t regret it!

Fire Prevention Tips from a Professional Fire Restoration Company in Hickory Hollow

10/16/2017 (Permalink)

In 2015 alone, there were over 1,345,500 cases of fire reported in the U.S. These fires caused a cumulative property damage worth $14.3 billion.

Some of the common causes of fires in the country include arson attacks, human errors, and improper use of furnaces, water heaters, and boilers.

Fires can occur anywhere at any time. This means that all buildings – whether residential or commercial - should have fire precautionary measures put in place to ensure that outbreaks are avoided. And if they happen to occur, they’ll cause minimal damage.

Fire Prevention Measures from Fire Restoration Experts in Hickory Hollow

At SERVPRO, we care about you. That’s why we’ve come up with some good fire precautionary measures that you should consider: 

  • Having frequent fire risk evaluation for your building.
  • Proper handling of highly inflammable and combustible items. Most products that are highly flammable are labeled and should be stored properly.
  • Installing fire prevention equipment such as extinguishers, fire alarms, and fire sprinklers. These pieces of equipment should undergo inspection as often as possible to ensure they are working properly.
  • Ensuring that the fire extinguishers are easily accessible in case of a fire emergency. You can install them on walls of the corridors or a frequently used room. Avoid also stacking items on them.
  • Educating and training the occupants of a particular building on the dos and don’ts of fire prevention. Make sure they have the knowledge and technical skills of using fire prevention equipment.
  • Label emergency exits properly.

SERVPRO is a Professional Fire Restoration Company in Hickory Hollow That Cares

Fire disasters are inevitable even with all these prevention measures.

If you are a victim of such an ordeal, you’ll need to get your life back to normal as soon as possible. Fortunately, SERVPRO is a professional fire restoration company in Hickory Hollow that’s always available and dedicated to help you get your old life back.

You won’t even know that your building suffered a fire disaster after our restoration.

What to Do Before SERVPRO Arrives for Fire Restoration in Nashville

10/9/2017 (Permalink)

Fires outbreaks are not things we can plan – they are mostly accidental. This means that we should always take the necessary precautionary measures.

From the heat, to the smoke and the water used by the firefighters to put out the fire, fire can cause a lot of damage to your home.

After such a disaster, we get anxious and our first instincts are always to get back to our normal lives as soon as possible.

With expert fire restoration services in Nashville like SERVPRO, the fire damage to your home can be minimized. You can count on us for this.

Before Fire Restoration Experts in Nashville Arrive…

Ensure you contact your fire restoration company as soon as possible. SERVPRO will help to minimize the fire damage in your home. Here’s what you should do before they arrive:

  • Safety first. Ensure your family and neighbors are safe and the fire is completely put out by the fire marshals. It may not be wise to hang around the damaged house.
  • Electrical wiring, fall hazards, and slips are typically present after a fire damage in your home. So ensure you take necessary precautions.
  • Wet materials – after the fire marshals have put out the fire – can be heavy. Don’t attempt to carry them on your own. Let SERVPRO do it for you.
  • Take pictures and/or videos for insurances purposes.

Fire restoration by the SERVPRO Include:

  • Soot clean up from all the surfaces including walls, ceilings, and floors.
  • Smoke odor elimination.
  • Drying of the furniture, carpets, and any other items that might have gotten wet when the fire was being put out.
  • Cleaning of items that can be restored as well as sanitizing the whole place.
  • Repairing and restoring damaged items.

Get in Touch with SERVPRO for Professional Fire Restoration in Nashville

SERVPRO are the guys to call for your restoration in case your home suffers fire damage.

With vast experience and top-of-the-line equipment, we’ll ensure your life is back to normal in no time.

Commercial Mold Remediation in Hickory Hollow: Before Help Arrives…

9/25/2017 (Permalink)

For business owners, first impressions are always a big deal.

How do you expect your customers to react when they find a huge colony of mold on the restroom walls or any other wet place at your business premise? Their first instinct will be to turn and never come back.

Unlike mold on a stale sandwich, commercial mold infestation is never as easy as tossing a moldy bread into the trash. It can cause serious complications to the structural integrity, air quality, and even operations of the company.

When you notice mold growing on your business premises, your first step should be to call SERVPRO of Hickory Hollow. After making the call and the commercial restoration professionals in Hickory Hollow are on their way, here is what you have to do next:

Tips on What to Do Before Commercial Restoration Services Arrive

The Dos

  • Look for more places that you may suspect to have mold, especially behind drywalls and under the carpets.
  • Turn off the HVAC systems and fans of your commercial building.
  • Try to keep everyone away from the infested areas.

The Don’ts

  • Don’t attempt to scrap off the mold yourself.
  • Don’t spray fungicides or disinfectants on the mold. Such chemicals are harmful.
  • Don’t blow air across any surface with suspected or visible mold. This can compromise the air quality in your workplace.
  • Don’t touch or even disturb the mold.
  • Don’t try to dry the infested area yourself.

Commercial Restoration in Hickory Hollow Will Help You Attract More Customers

When your business property is clean and mold-free, it projects a successful image that will improve the customer’s experience at your business. Don’t let your competitors have the upper hand simply because your walls and other surfaces are infested with mold.

At SERVPRO, we are a leading commercial mold remediation company in Hickory Hollow, and we are always available to help.

Commercial Fire Restoration by Professionals in Percy Priest

9/25/2017 (Permalink)

A fire tragedy on your business can be really overwhelming and devastating. 

But with fire restoration companies such as SERVPRO just a phone call away, the devastation and anxiety have become things of the past.

Commercial Fire Damage Restoration Process in Percy Priest

1. Contact Us ASAP

All fire restoration companies offer emergency contacts so that you can get in contact with them as soon as possible.

At SERVPRO, we take pride in our quick responses. You can always count on us for your commercial fire restoration needs. Our emergency number is (615) 731-4222.

2. Assessment

Our skilled professionals will assess and give you a comprehensive report on the extent of the damage, how far the soot has spread, how long the fire restoration exercise may take as well as the general costs you may incur.

3. Odor Elimination

At SERVPRO, we use top-of-the-line dehumidifiers and air movers to completely remove smoke odor and make your building smell as fresh as never before. These pieces of equipment are also used to dry the walls and floors. 

4. Clean Up

 This process basically involves scrubbing off all the smoke, dust, and soot from your business premises.

At SERVPRO, we want you to get back on your feet as soon as possible. That’s why we are equipped with the right equipment and skilled staff for quick and efficient commercial restoration services.

5. Repair and Renovation

Last but not least, our fire restoration process will also involve renovation and repair of office furniture as well as all the electronic devices. When SERVPRO restoration services are done with your business premises, you’ll – without a doubt – be satisfied with the end results.

SERVPRO is Your Number One Commercial Fire Restoration in Percy Priest

SERVPRO commercial restoration experts are the people to call after fire damage. With a highly trained team and state of the art equipment, you can expect nothing less than exceptional restoration services.

Restaurant Restoration in Nashville: Common Causes of Fires in Restaurants

9/18/2017 (Permalink)

According to the National Fire Protection Association, there are over 3,500 restaurant fires reported each year in the United States. These fires are estimated to cost about $84 million in property damage every year. The majority of these fires are started in the cooking area of the restaurants.

Even though the rates have reduced over the years, restaurant fires are still a major concern today. You may have your smoke alarms up to code and working properly, but we all know that commercial cooking operations have a multitude of fire hazards.

5 Common Restaurant Fire Safety Issues in Nashville

  • Vent hood doesn’t cover all the cooking appliances: When fire starts on a cooking appliance that isn’t properly covered by a vent hood, it can’t be easily controlled and may burn down the whole kitchen.
  • Inadequate cleaning of the exhaust systems: Exhaust systems usually accumulate grease which is highly inflammable and could pose a serious fire threat. Regular maintenance of the exhaust systems will come a long way in ensuring that your restaurant is safe from fire damage.
  • Incorrectly installed baffle filters: These filters are specifically designed to collect grease. If they are incorrectly installed, grease may accumulate on the hood and pose a serious fire threat.
  • Inadequate separation or partition between fryers and cooking appliances: Without adequate space between these two items, cooking oil can easily splash into flames and cause a fire. Ensure there is at least 16 inches of separation or use a thick noncombustible metal divider.
  • Dirty vents, ceiling, hoods, and work areas: Lack of proper hygiene and sanitation in a commercial kitchen is a major risk of restaurant fires. Dirty surfaces can easily be ignited by a small flame and cause a huge fire disaster.

Call SERVPRO for Restaurant Restoration

In addition to these common causes, lack of proper fire prevention equipment and skills is also another contributing factor. As a restaurant owner in Nashville, ensure that your staff is properly trained on the basic fire prevention and safety practices. 

But if the damage is already done, you have a second chance with SERVPRO. We offer top-notch and quick restaurant restoration services in Nashville. Don’t let a mere fire shatter your dreams. We will restore your restaurant in no time.

Fire Prevention and Safety Tips from Commercial Fire Restoration Experts in Hickory Hollow

9/11/2017 (Permalink)

According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), more than 136,000 non-residential fires were reported in 2015 alone, and this caused up to $3.3 billion in direct property damage.

As a business owner, you need to focus on issues such as fire prevention, risk assessment, and employee education. These issues will help minimize the chances of a commercial fire at your business.

3 Surefire Ways to Prevent Commercial Fire Damage in Hickory Hollow

1. Evaluate the risk of a fire hazard on your business

The NFPA offers a number of publications on fire safety for businesses. This will be a great place to start. Also, you can ask for guidance and advice from your building’s property manager.

2. Protect your employees

Your workers are the most important assets to your business and educating them on the best fire prevention practices will come a long way in preventing total loss and injuries. 

  • Evacuation Plan: For large commercial buildings, you need to post fire evacuation signs in several places around the workplace. Elevators should never be included in an evacuation plan – always use the stairs.
  • Fire Plan: Ensure your staff knows what to do in the event of a fire outbreak. Occasional fire drills will help keep your staff up-to-date with the fire safety practices.
  • First Aid: Your staff should know where the first-aid kit is located and how to use the items inside. The kits should be placed in areas where fire hazards are likely to occur.

3. Ensure fire protection systems are installed

Standard fire safety practices in Hickory Hollow call for fire extinguishers and smoke detectors on every floor of your building. An automatic sprinkler system will also provide primary fire protection for your business.

Commercial Fire Restoration Services

When various materials burn, the soot created often differs greatly and may require specific cleaning techniques. This means that every commercial fire damage is different and requires unique solutions.

At SERVPRO, we provide top-notch and quick commercial fire restoration services in Hickory Hollow to ensure your business is up and running again.

How to Get Rid of Mold Damage in Your Home

8/28/2017 (Permalink)

You think you spot mold damage in your house. Now what?

There are several factors you need to consider when determining your next step to get rid of your excess mold. For instance, how large is the area, how long has it been there, and where in your home is the problem located.

Don’t Use a Home Kit to Test Your Mold Damage

The first thing some homeowners do when they spot mold damage is to buy a home testing kit. These will cost you anywhere from about 50 to several hundred dollars, but Consumer Reports does not recommend them. The publication says the tests are often confusing and unreliable, and states it’s more important to get rid of the mold problem than identifying the species.

The main thing to remember – you have options. Here are two ways you can get rid of the mold damage in your home.

1. Clean Up the Mold Yourself

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) says if your suspected damage is less than 10 square feet and less than 48 hours old, you can probably clean it by yourself. The EPA suggests using a mixture of water and detergent to scrub mold off of hard surfaces. A good ratio to use is a maximum of one cup of bleach for every gallon of water.

It’s important to make sure the area is completely dry after cleaning before applying another layer of paint or covering. In some instances, you might have to remove and replace the impacted material.

2. Hire a Professional to Get Rid of Your Mold

If the mold damage is in an area larger than 10 square feet or has been there for a long time, you might want to consider hiring a professional to get rid of your mold. The highly trained technicians at SERVPRO in Percy Priest and Hickory Hollow are equipped with tools and testing methods that aren’t available to the general public. Our team will diagnose your problem and suggest timely mold remediation services that are best for your home, family, and budget.

It All Starts With Prevention

The best way to stop mold growth in your home is by controlling the moisture. The Tennessee Department of Health suggests these methods to prevent mold damage:

  • Fix leaks promptly, especially around windows, pipes, and roofs
  • Make sure your indoor humidity is between 30 and 50 percent
  • Avoid carpeting bathrooms and basements
  • Inspect your HVAC system on a regular basis
  • Properly vent your shower, cooking, and laundry areas
  • Promptly clean up and dry out your home after flooding

If you spot mold damage in your home, contact SERVPRO in Percy Priest. Call us at 615-731-4222 to schedule your appointment today.

Quick Commercial Water Damage Restoration in Percy Priest

8/28/2017 (Permalink)

Commercial water damage can quickly escalate into a costly process if it is not properly handled in time, and your business will suffer.

Every minute that water touches your electronics, furniture, client files, and capital equipment, you are losing a significant amount of money. Time is of the essence here!

Why You Need Our Quick Commercial Water Damage Restoration in Percy Priest

When an emergency strikes, there is no time to move slowly. Fast response is the most effective way of minimizing damage and loss to your business.

If the cleanup does not start immediately, water will begin to evaporate, and the moisture is redistributed to other structures of your building such as drywalls and ceiling tiles. The result is secondary damage which can drastically increase your claims costs.

Some of the secondary damages that may occur on your building include:

  • Buckling of hardwood floors.
  • Growth of mold.
  • Loosening of vinyl from the floor.
  • Cracking or sagging of plaster and sheetrock.

Moreover, most insurance companies will pay if the cleanup is done promptly. For many policies, it is the responsibility of the business owner to take action in case of a water damage emergency.

How Does Commercial Water Damage Restoration Work?

Commercial restoration is a multi-phase process. First, all standing water is removed from the floor and other affected areas. Then, dehumidifiers and other specialized equipment are used to dry the areas affected completely.

When applicable, thermal imaging cameras and moisture meters are used to ensure your building is thoroughly dry.

At SERVPRO, our commercial restoration in Percy Priest is not only limited to drying your business premises. We also carry out mold removal, odor control, carpet cleaning, and more.

Trust Your Number One Commercial Water Damage Restoration Experts at SERVPRO

Our highly skilled team of professionals with top-of-line equipment is always ready to handle all of your commercial restoration needs.

At SERVPRO, our quick response will restore your business to its full potential so that your operations experience the least possible downtime.

How to Prevent Mold Damage While You’re on Vacation

8/21/2017 (Permalink)

When many families take summer vacations, they turn up or off their air conditioning.

And it makes sense – it costs a lot of money to keep your home cool. Why pay extra to do it when no one is there?

But before you think about shutting down your AC when you hit the beach for a week, there are a few things you need to consider to prevent mold damage while you’re away.

3 Simple Ways to Prevent Mold Damage While You’re Away

It’s not difficult to prevent mold damage when you’re on vacation. It just means adding a few extra things to your checklist before you leave. Here are three simple tips to help stop mold from growing while you’re out of town.

1. Leave the Air Conditioner Running

It may cost a little more money to leave your AC running while you’re away, but consider how much money and effort it will save you to prevent mold damage in your home. Mold tends to grow when there’s more humidity in the air, and running your air conditioner will help keep your humidity down in your house. Angie’s List recommends you turn up your thermostat four degrees while you are away. For instance, if you normally keep your home set at 74, turn up the temperature to 78 while you are on vacation.

2. Use a Dehumidifier

Not all homes in the Percy Priest and Hickory Hollow areas may have reliable air conditioning, or you might be using window units in some areas of your house that you can’t keep running while you’re away. A simple, not too expensive solution would be a dehumidifier. These devices will cost anywhere from 50 to several hundred dollars, depending on the size and area in which you’ll need to use it.

3. Clean Up Any Water Spills

Where there’s standing water, there’s a greater chance for mold. If you’re like most people, you’re probably pretty busy in the days or hours leading up to your vacation. Make sure you give yourself time to clean up the sink before you leave, especially if you have pots or pans with water in them. Besides coming home to a smelly house, you might come home to discover mold damage.

Also, be sure to have a plan for any appliances that tend to leak, such as a refrigerator.

Call In the Pros if You Spot Mold Damage

If you find mold damage in your home after you return from your vacation, call in the professionals at SERVPRO right here in Percy Priest. Our team of highly trained technicians will help find the source of your problem and suggest mold remediation services that are right for your home and budget.

Contact SERVPRO in Percy Priest at 615-731-4222 today to schedule your appointment today.

5 Areas in Your Home Where Mold Damage Is Common

8/7/2017 (Permalink)

Mold damage is a problem.

The fungi can lead to costly home repairs and even cause health issues for some people.

One of the best ways to get rid of excess mold in your home is to prevent it from growing, and that means understanding where mold is most likely to show up.

What Causes Mold Damage in Homes

Mold grows in environments that are warm, wet or humid. So generally anywhere in your home that might be warmer or have more standing water is more favorable for mold. With this in mind, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released a full list of areas in your home that are most susceptible to mold damage. Here are the top five places you need to check most often.

1. Mold Damage in Your Basement

Few locations in your home will be as humid and wet as your basement. Take extra care if your basement is carpeted and be sure to check areas around your pipes. Using a dehumidifier can help prevent mold damage in this area.

2. Mold Damage in Your Bathroom

One of the wettest rooms in your house, mold growth is common in bathrooms, especially around showers. Be sure to regularly check any drywall near the shower as well as your shower curtain. The EPA also suggests running your exhaust fan or opening the window while you shower to vent some of the humidity.

3. Mold Damage in Your Attic

Be sure you check your attic for leaks, especially after heavy rain or the summer storms common in the Percy Priest and Hickory Hollow areas. Water can collect and lead to mold growth. If you do not have an attic, be sure to check for water stains on the ceiling of your top floor.

4. Mold Damage in Your Kitchen

If your dishwasher or refrigerator leaks, mold damage can occur in your kitchen. Take note of any standing water around these appliances, and call a plumber immediately if you suspect a problem. It’s also a good idea not to leave pots or pans filled with water in your kitchen sink for too long.

5. Mold Damage in Your Laundry Room

It’s important to make sure your washer and dryer are properly vented so the heat and humidity caused by these appliances is flowed outside. Otherwise, you could develop mold damage on the walls near the exhaust.

What To Do If You Find Mold Damage

If you find mold damage in any of these areas, call in the professionals at SERVPRO right here in Percy Priest. Our team of highly trained technicians will help find the source of your problem and suggest mold remediation services that are right for your home and budget.

Contact SERVPRO in Percy Priest at 615-731-4222 today to schedule your appointment today.

Quick Fixes for Minor Water Damage in Your Home

7/31/2017 (Permalink)

Even if you’re not quite the handyman — complete with a box of tools and screws – there are some simple home fixes you should be able to handle on your own.

Water damage can be very difficult to manage if you're not an expert but there are minor cases that are easy enough to remedy even for first-time homeowners. Once you know how to tell the difference between water stained walls and a coffee spill, you can try your hand at one of these quick fixes.

Kill the Mold

If the mold infestation isn’t that serious, this is one of the easiest things to fix right away. You don’t even need store-bought mold killer to do this yourself. Just grab an empty spray bottle, pour in some regular household vinegar, and spray away. Vinegar kills off the mold and it should go away within a day after spraying.

However, you should still be careful when coming in contact with fungi — no matter how insignificant they appear. Always use protective gear such as gloves and a mask to prevent mold exposure.

Take Out Replaceable Parts

Consider yourself lucky if the damage contains itself within a couple of wooden panels or any detachable and replaceable part of your home. Wood is one of the most water-sensitive building material that is easily stained.

You can try some DIY stain removal techniques or — if you have some cash to spare — simply take it out and replace it. Doing this prevents any fungi growth from spreading to perfectly good tiles.

It’s also a good idea to replace rusty pipes as soon as possible. Rusty pipes are weak and could easily burst, leaving you with an even bigger problem than what you started with.

Dry the Area

When it comes to water damage, the longer it stays moist, the worse the damage. Once you spot the affected area, drain the water immediately and let it dry.

If you have time, use a blow dryer or set up a few electric fans to speed up the drying process. This not only prevents the structure or furniture from deteriorating, it also lessens the chance of mold and bacteria from contaminating the air.

Know When to Call a Water Restoration Pro

Quick fixes are only good for small scale water damage that you can address even without proper training. If you go down your basement and it looks like a river miraculously sprouted from the ground, you know it’s time to call in the experts.

Trying to fix serious water damage can not only result in more damage, it could potentially be dangerous as well. You’ll never know if there are any live wires or other hazards lurking in that pool of water. 

At SERVPRO, we provide top-quality services for residents of Hickory Hollow, Antioch 24/7. Let us help restore your water damaged home!

4 Effects of Water Damage in Homes

7/26/2017 (Permalink)

Bad weather conditions, faulty plumbing, and old pipes — those are just some of the most common causes of home water damage here at Percy Priest, Nashville. We’ve all heard about what water damage is and what it can do to your home, but how bad can it be?

The simple answer is: it can be an absolute nightmare.

It can make living in your home extremely inconvenient and in the worst-case scenario, it can also force you to pack up your things and find somewhere else to live. Water damage is no light matter. Not to mention, not all kinds of water damage are covered by home insurance.

To give you a better idea on why you should take this issue seriously, here are four common effects of water damage that you might not know about.

  1. Lowers Your Home’s Resale Value

Nobody wants to buy into someone else’s problem. If you ever decide to sell, there are agents who come in and inspect your house for signs of deterioration. Including — yes, you guessed it — water damage.

It’s one of the top things real estate agents look for when assessing the value of a home. Not only is it a clear sign of disrepair, water damage also creates long term issues that might make your home unsellable if the damage is too great.

  1. Attracts Insects and Pest

Nasty little bugs, insects, and other creepy crawlies love snuggling into moist corners where they get a steady supply of H2O.

Areas like under the sink, clogged gutters, and other places where stagnant water accumulates creates a haven for unwanted pests. If you don’t want to compete with little critters for your home, it’s best to make sure your home is free of water damage.

  1. Serious Health Hazards

Besides bugs and insects, a moist environment also breeds things like molds and fungi that could pose a serious health risk for you and your family.

Mold exposure can trigger allergies, respiratory issues, food poisoning, and a bunch of other problems — especially for children and those with weakened immune systems. When you see any sign of mold, it’s important to call experts right away before matters get worse.

  1. Encourages Further Water Damage

If left unaddressed, even the smallest sign of water damage can eventually lead to catastrophe. It can ruin your flooring, carpet, walls, and seep into the very foundation of your home. Once this happens, you might be better off moving somewhere else than spending on repairs.

Severely water damaged homes are dangerous places to live in and it pays to act quick in order to avoid a worst-case scenario.

Quick Response for Emergency Repairs

When it comes to maintaining the integrity of your home, trust only the experts at SERVPRO here at Percy Priest. We provide highly trained technicians to get to the bottom of the problem and provide efficient water restoration services.

Our team is fully equipped with all the tools needed to have your home looking brand new, as if nothing even happened.

Test our top-quality services for yourself! Contact SERVPRO in Percy Priest at 615-731-4222 today and we’ll show you what reliable emergency service is all about.

Summer Pool Cleaning and Safety Tips

7/13/2017 (Permalink)

Keep your pool clean to enjoy all season long!

When summer brings the heat crashing into your daily routine, a pool is a great way to cool off and break up the dog days of summer.

But a water feature on your property requires a few important things, such as regular maintenance and awareness of safety when friends and family, particularly small children, come to take a dip in your outdoor oasis.

An above or in-ground pool can get slick with bacteria quickly if the water circulation, chemical balance, and equipment maintenance aren’t regularly cared for.

SERVPRO of Percy Priest / Hickory Hollow has an excellent team of professionals who can quickly and efficiently assist if your water features cause any damage to your property. From backyard ponds, spas, waterfalls and pools, we can evaluate and offer advice on how to fix damage from broken equipment or other ancillary issues.

A glistening pool can turn murky and green within a day of neglect. A breakdown in water circulation, pH balance or clogged equipment can turn your water wonderland into a heck of an expensive fix. SERVPRO of Percy Priest / Hickory Hollow can save you time and peace of mind by fixing water damage before it creates serious problems.

Safety around pools is often overlooked when the summer season begins. Follow the A, B, C, and D’s of drowning prevention for a fun, safe summer season. Don’t delay in protecting your home and backyard from any drowning risk. Most drowning deaths among young children happen at times when parents are nearby, but a child visits the pool alone.

  • A – Adults should be supervising at all times.
  • B – Barriers installed around the property prevent unsupervised swimmers from entering the water.
  • C – Classes for CPR and swimming can offer an added layer of safety.
  • D – Devices such as a lifesaving ring and shepherd's hook are crucial when someone is in trouble in the water.

Never leave your child or their friends unattended around water. Infants and children under the age of 2 can drown in as little as one inch of water. Enroll your children or children who visit your pool regularly in age–appropriate, year-round swim lessons taught by qualified instructors to maintain swimming skills. Non-swimming family members need lessons as well.

How To Care For Hardwood Floors

7/10/2017 (Permalink)

Follow these tips to keep your hardwood floors beautiful!

Imagine smooth, glossy, flawless hardwood floors on a mild summer day. Sunlight tumbles in through the window and highlights the surface. In the dead of winter, the floor shines with a rosy brown hue, welcoming its guests into the warmth of the room.

Hardwood floors are beautiful and need special care to stay that way. So it is important to clean them carefully to preserve their beauty. Be sure to remove all dirt, grime, mold, and debris using a natural bristle brush attachment which will not scratch the floor. Over the years, water damage, fire damage, mold growth, and other disasters may strip the floor as well. Additional restoration efforts are vital in these cases.

Polyurethane

Polyurethane surfaces are the most common type of hardwood floor surface and can be easily cleaned by vacuuming. Remove dirt with glass cleaners such as Windex, and take care of spills by wiping with water. Steer clear of diluted vinegar, ammonia, and oil soap as cleaning agents, as these substances desaturate the floor’s color. Avoid rough cleaning, such as aggressive scrubbing of the floor’s surface, as this will also cause the surface to lose its color.

Oiled

Clean these floors by vacuuming and dry mopping then applying a wood cleaner. Oiled hardwood floors tainted with stains or degraded with age can be restored through an application with hardwood oil, which can be found at many hardware stores. Let the oil sink in for two hours, and let dry.

Waxed

Waxed floors require more constant care, as they will need to be re-waxed approximately once every two years. Strip old wax with a wax stripper, odorless mineral spirits or fast-drying Naphtha. Rub the stripper into the wood and then wipe off with a clean, soft cloth. Keep the area well ventilated at all times.


Why do all this work by yourself, though? If your hardwood floors incur water damage, give us a call. At SERVPRO of Percy Priest / Hickory Hollow, we are dedicated to helping you fix these problems and more with our 24/7 commercial service and a team of highly trained individuals. Contact us by phone or online, and we’ll be there in a couple of hours to check it out. With SERVPRO, restoration is simple, the damage becomes nonexistent, and any hardwood floor “disaster” won’t seem so bad once our crew rolls around.

Reasons Why Duct Cleaning is Important During the Summer

6/30/2017 (Permalink)

Air duct cleaning is beneficial for everyone in your home!

Can you answer the following questions: what exactly is duct cleaning, what does it do, and why is it significant for me and my home? Also, why is it especially important to have the air ducts cleaned during the summer time? This is something the professionals at SERVPRO of Percy Priest / Hickory Hollow hear a lot.

Luckily, we’re experts in the subject matter! We can respond to those questions and make the decision-making process a tad easier. So the next time you’re thinking about ways to boost your home’s air quality or keep your system from needing frequent heating repair, you know what to do!

What is duct cleaning?

Duct cleaning is the elimination of dirt, particles, and debris inside your home’s air distribution system (the ductwork). Duct cleaning usually involves special tools, vacuums, and a process to free dirt and debris clinging to the interior walls of the ducts before being taken out with a powerful vacuum system. This varies from your routine air conditioner or furnace maintenance service that focuses mostly on your heating and air conditioning equipment.

What does duct cleaning do?

Duct cleaning can help your home and indoor air quality in a variety of ways, like:

*Removing dirt and dust from your home and the air you breathe, allowing clean air in.

*Eliminating germs and bacteria caused by excess dirt.

*Improving your heating and air conditioning system’s energy efficiency.

*Potentially relieving the symptoms of seasonal allergies inside the home.

Having the air ducts in your home cleaned is as painless as adding it onto your next heating repair service appointment with our experienced team. There’s no real excuse to delay duct cleaning like so many of us do, plus you’ll end up with heating and cooling equipment that’s working at its best efficiency as well as having clean air.

Cleaning Up After Kitchen Disasters

6/29/2017 (Permalink)

Kitchen disasters can be restored even after fire damage

Fire is always devastating but one that starts in the kitchen can be especially bad. A kitchen is full of many flammable substances like oil, wooden cabinets, and cleaning solvents. Returning your kitchen to a useful state takes time and effort, something that SERVPRO of Percy Priest / Hickory Hollow can help you with. While waiting for the fire remediation experts to arrive, here are a few things that you can do:

  • Take pictures: Before you do anything else, make sure that you take as many pictures of the damage as possible. If you're filing an insurance claim, the adjuster will most likely take his or her own pictures when he or she gets to the scene.
  • However, having your own set of pictures can be good for comparison purposes. They can also be useful to check against what's been repaired and replaced so that you can see whether everything's been put back into its proper place.
  • Unplug appliances: Depending on the severity of the blaze, the fire department may already have shut off or removed your power meter. Now is a good time to unplug any appliances. This will make sure that, if the electricity is turned back on, they won't have any current running to them. It will also make it easier to move the appliance out of the way. Many large appliances can be repaired for minimal cost, especially if you take action now. Remove any food from the refrigerator and freezer, putting the food into ice chests or otherwise disposing of it before it has a chance to go bad.


After taking the above steps, give us a call. The smell of smoke and the potentially toxic byproducts of burning materials can linger in your home for a long time if not remedied on time. While there are some things that you can do, hiring a professional company to clean up the smoke and repair the damage is going to be the fastest and easiest way to make your kitchen usable after it's been damaged by flames. SERVPRO of Percy Priest / Hickory Hollow can help you get your house back together after fire disaster!

Tips to Keep Rugs in Top Condition

6/17/2017 (Permalink)

These tips will keep your rugs as good as new!

A new rug can add color and liveliness or a sense of gravity and sophistication to any room. To keep a rug looking its best, the homeowner should consider the following:

The Care Tag

A homeowner should read the tag that came with the rug. If it can be removed, it should be filed away.

Where the Rug Is

A rug that's kept in a room that is used often, such as the den or family room, is going to need more care than a rug in a room that gets little traffic. The homeowner may want to buy a rug that’s made of synthetics for a frequently used room. Nylon, or example, is a tough fiber that can hold its own under a great deal of traffic.

On the other hand, a rug in a seldom-used room that gets direct sunlight needs care. The sun’s ultraviolet light fades colors and can even cause some fabrics to deteriorate. Some homeowners move the furniture around seasonally so most parts of a room-sized rug can be exposed to the sun. A smaller rug can be rotated.

Cleaning

Floor-sized rugs can be vacuumed. Smaller rugs can be taken outside, hung on a clothesline and beaten with a rug beater or shaken out. Many rug beaters are as decorative as they are useful, and can be hung on a wall.

The homeowner should check the label to see if a rug can be dry cleaned, put in the wash or spot cleaned. If the label says to spot clean, the homeowner should test an inconspicuous area on the rug beforehand. It’s best to machine wash a rug on the delicate cycle, then let it air dry. It should not be slung over a clothesline because it may be pulled out of shape. It should be left to dry on a rack, a group of bricks on the deck or over old towels or sheets on a table.

The homeowner should use an enzyme-based cleaner to remove pet stains and brush out pet hairs with a stiff brush. All stains should be blotted up immediately.

How to Store the Rug

A rug should first be cleaned by a professional such as SERVPRO of Percy Priest / Hickory Hollow before it's stored. It should be wrapped up and placed in a dark, cool, dry place. A storage space whose climate can be controlled is ideal.

SERVPRO of Percy Priest / Hickory Hollow is pleased to attend to the rugs of both residential and commercial clients. Visit their website for more information.

Worried About Summer HVAC Costs? How to Lower Utility Bills

6/6/2017 (Permalink)

If you feel that your electricity bills are unnecessarily high in the summer because of your heating and cooling system, there are some changes you want to make and some things you can look into. You want to have a service expert look at your heating and cooling system so you can stop wasting money, and to make sure there aren't repairs that are costing you. Talk with the service expert about these things to maintain your air conditioning system in the summer.

Service Your AC Unit

The air conditioning unit is the HVAC appliance that runs throughout the summer, and if it isn't maintained properly, it could be costing you a lot of money. A service professional can check the Freon levels, change the filter, lubricate all the gears and mechanical components, and tune the machine up so that it works more efficiently and correctly. This also allows the expert to see if there is anything problematic with the unit.

Run an Attic Fan

During the hot summer months the warm air in your home will rise to the top of the house and get trapped in the attic. An attic fan helps to remove the air from the attic, allowing the house to keep cool, and reduces the amount of time your air conditioner has to work to keep the temperature down. If you don't currently have an attic fan, find out how much it will be to have one installed.

Check Your Vents

If any of the vents are closed around the house, it makes it hard to control the temperature in the house. This could be causing your air conditioner to run harder and for longer, which is costing you money. A service company can also look through your air ducts to see if there is anything causing airflow problems, which can relate to poor efficiency. SERVPRO of Percy Priest / Hickory Hollow can help diagnose your air vents and save you money.

The summer temperatures are hot enough, and you don't want your utility bills to be high too. With seasonal home maintenance you can bring down the cost of your summer utility bills, and the expenses associated with running your air conditioner.

Blinds Can Help Control the Temperature in Your Home

5/28/2017 (Permalink)

Save money on heating and cooling with window treatments and blinds.

The temperature inside your home is a critical component to your comfort and your HVAC system moderates that temperature. We all want to be comfortable but your heating and cooling system does not need to operate all day and night. This can inflate your energy bills and lead to unnecessary wear and tear on the heating and cooling system. A smart idea is to use window treatments to moderate the temperature inside the home. This can be accomplished in two distinctive ways.

A Thermal Buffer

Your blinds can serve as a thermal buffer that insulates the windows. Some windows have multiple panes, and the windows themselves are well-insulated to prevent temperature changes. However, glass can still allow some cold or hot air to pass into the home, and you need an additional layer of insulation. Some types of window treatments block temperature transfer between the interior and exterior of the home. You should keep the window treatments closed for the best results.

Moderating Radiant Heat

While the air itself can transfer heat or coolness into the home, radiant heat can also be a factor. When sunlight streams into the home, the radiant heat from the sunbeams can warm the air in the home. This happens on both warm and cool days, and it can impact how well your heating and cooling system operates. In addition, it can create drafts in the home that make the space uncomfortable to be in. A simple solution to this problem is to close your blinds to block direct sunlight from entering the home.

The air and light that passes through your windows can impact your home’s indoor climate in critical ways. Additionally, both of these issues can cause your HVAC system to work overtime. When this happens, repair issues are common.


One way to keep your HVAC unit in great condition is to have your air ducts cleaned. You can schedule an appointment with the skilled and trained technicians of SERVPRO of Percy Priest / Hickory Hollow. By scheduling service at the first sign of a problem, you can minimize the risk of a more significant repair issue from developing. The team at SERVPRO of Percy Priest / Hickory Hollow can handle all your air duct cleaning service requests at home or in the office. Give us a call today to see how we can help.

Effective DIY Alternatives to Running an Air Conditioner

5/19/2017 (Permalink)

Opening windows instead of running the AC is a great option in the summer time!

If you don’t have an air conditioner, there may be a few alternatives to cooling your home that you can set up yourself. While you may not achieve the same exact results, you can likely lower the temperature enough to a level that’s most comfortable for you.

The following tips, from SERVPRO of Percy Priest / Hickory Hollow, offer several DIY alternatives to running an AC to keep cool this summer.

Take It Easy

A lot of the heat that’s generated in your home comes from your movement, using appliances like the dryer or the oven, and using electronic devices, especially computers. So, if there’s a heatwave, avoid cooking or using your oven if possible. Order takeout or make meals that are easy to prepare, like sandwiches and cereal. This way you’ll generate minimal heat in your house.

Window Management

Close your blinds and curtains to keep the sun out as much as possible. Your windows should also be shut as well. Keeping them open during the night when temperatures are lower allows cooler air in, and if you keep them shut during the day, it’ll trap whatever cool air entered overnight in your house. If it’s hotter inside than it is outside, though, then by all means, keep the windows open to cool things down a bit. You can even put a box fan in the window to let in the cooler air.

Cold Sheets

If you’re finding that opening a window isn’t cooling it down fast enough, then spray a sheet with cold water and use it to cover the open window. As the air passes through, the cold and damp sheet will cool the air in your home.

Homemade Air Conditioner

By itself, a fan isn’t always cooling, because if the air inside is already warm, the fan will just be blowing warm air around instead of cooling the existing air like an AC does. However, placing a bowl full of ice in front of a fan to help cool the air as the ice evaporates.

Take it to the next level by constructing an inexpensive homemade AC using tubing, a barrel of ice water and a fan. The cold water flows through tubing attached to the back of the fan which cools the blowing air. It works like a central AC system where the air flows through the air ducts to escape through different rooms of the house. It may get a little bit messy with handling the condensation, but it is an affordable option.

How does your HVAC work?

5/17/2017 (Permalink)

What keeps your HVAC unit running?

A home’s HVAC, (heating, ventilation and air conditioning) system  keeps rooms comfortable throughout the year. Heating the home can happen in several different ways. If the house uses forced air, the air is warmed then forced through the air ducts of the house and up through registers or vents. Radiators use steam or hot water from a boiler to heat the house, and radiant heat uses pads or coils that hide beneath the floor or behind walls.

More and more people are turning to solar heating to warm their homes. A solar heating system uses collectors on the roof of the house to gather the sun’s energy and distribute it through the rooms in the form of heat. Some people in milder climates use geothermal heating. It takes advantage of the fact that after a certain depth the ground stays at a constant temperature, no matter how warm or cold the air is. In geothermal heating, pipes buried in the ground help warm the house in the winter and help cool it in the summer.

Forced air heaters and boilers are often large pieces of equipment found in the basement or crawlspace of a house. Heaters can be powered by electricity, oil or natural gas. Some heaters are converted into air conditioners during the summers. In that case, they’re called heat pumps.

Air Conditioners

Air conditioners are far more complex than heating systems. The job of an air conditioner, whether it be a central air conditioner or a room unit, is not to add cold but to remove heat. It does this through a system of coils, condensers, fans and refrigerants. The cooled air is then blown into the house through the air ducts.

Ventilation

The ventilation system makes sure that fresh air moves into the house and stale air is taken away. The ventilation can be powered or static. Static ventilation includes doors, windows and vents. Powered ventilators include exhaust fans or attic fans. These work with windows and doors to remove excess heat from the rooms. This system may cool a house down so much that the air conditioner doesn’t need to be used. Ventilation systems may also use dehumidifiers to pull excess humidity out of the air.


For more information about the HVAC system or to set up an appointment to have it serviced, get in touch with SERVPRO of Percy Priest / Hickory Hollow.

How Can Dehumidifiers Help At Home

5/5/2017 (Permalink)

Dehumidifiers can help keep humidity levels in your home manageable!

There are many reasons we can have too much moisture in our home. Condensation, a leaky HVAC system, poor insulation, or the weather can end up causing an array of health hazards to your family and structural issues to your home.

The most common problem caused by moisture is mold. It starts off unseen, but quickly gets out of control. Mold can occur behind sheetrock, behind wallpaper, underneath baseboards - anywhere. If not found and removed, mold can cause serious breathing issues, especially in those with allergies or asthma. It is always important to speak with a mold remediation service as soon as possible when spotted. Trying to tackle this problem yourself could only end up costing more and not solving the problem.

Less thought about are the microbes, allergens, and bugs that thrive in a moist environment. From dust mites to bed bugs, these creatures reproduce in high humidity. Eliminating the extra moisture will help slow down their life cycle and may help eliminate the problem. Not only are these organisms disgusting to think about, but they can also cause major health issues. Of course, those with compromised respiratory or immune systems are more affected.

What can you do? If the problem is from cooking or taking a shower, then opening a window may solve your problems. But after a major incident, such as a burst pipe, it may be better to call a professional. SERVPRO of Percy Priest / Hickory Hollow provides the equipment and expertise needed to handle any major humidity or moisture issue. Professional dehumidifiers, high powered fans, meters and other equipment can be brought into your home to help get rid of unwanted moisture quickly.

Whether the job calls for a professional, or is the perfect DIY project, humidity problems must be addressed properly to protect your family and your investment. Dehumidifiers are a simple, inexpensive, yet effective way to eliminate moisture from your home. When used properly, they help create a comfortable and healthy living space, while easing your mind about the potential problems high humidity can create.

“Mold Removal” vs Mold Remediation In Your Home

4/28/2017 (Permalink)

Keep your home as mold-free as possible with our trained technicians!

Household mildew is unsightly and can pose a health danger. People with problems like pollen allergies and asthma are especially susceptible. Fortunately, there are ways to handle moldy growth inside the home with SERVPRO of Percy Priest / Hickory Hollow.

Understanding Growth

Moldy fungus is present in nature but it is the active spores that grow and become visible. Dormant particles do not normally cause problems. It is wet moist areas that activate the spores, causing it to appear and spread.

Taking Control

Spore control is one of the biggest problems that homeowners must face. The first step is to try and keep rooms as dry as possible. If there is a leak, it needs attention as soon as possible. Moisture is the culprit when it comes to mildew.

Time for Action

The appearance of fungus is the obvious first indicator of a potential problem. The sooner you deal with it the easier it is to fix. Spores grow when activated and can take over a large area in a small amount of time.

Solutions

The fact that spores are everywhere makes removing them altogether nearly impossible. Moldy spots that are small in size are easier to deal with. This is an indicator that the spores may be restricted to one spot. The remediation process helps to stop mold from growing. The work usually begins when the area has been dried and is prepped.

Remedies

Larger infested areas are more serious and often need a complete solution. Mold remediation focuses on eliminating the growth of spores. The size of the affected space is a factor in what treatment is required during the restoration process. This involves long term solutions such as moisture reduction techniques.

Professional Help

SERVPRO of Percy Priest / Hickory Hollow is the place to turn to for help. We are experts in their field and are trained on the specifics of spores. Dealing with moisture and mildew requires professional help. We will draw up a comprehensive plan that plots the entire restoration process. Our trained technicians use advanced equipment and techniques to solve the problem. No one should have to live with spores in their homes and it can be fixed. Call us today!

Mold Remediation and your Home

4/20/2017 (Permalink)

Let us manage your mold problems!

Dealing with mold in the home is a daunting task, especially if it has spread to many areas of the house. It forms in areas that have been exposed to prolonged water exposure, such as a leaky roof or in the plumbing lines. It only takes from one to three days for a single spore to spread to an entire colony into a significant problem for your home and family.

There are serious health consequences associated with its presence. It contributes to health conditions such as respiratory illnesses and headaches. It can also irritate allergies and conditions like asthma. Young children and the elderly are even more at risk for symptoms from mild exposure. The spores spread through the air and are invisible until the effects take hold. It also has a dingy, musty scent to it.

It's not only unsightly but also has serious health consequences if it isn’t handled properly. SERVPRO of Percy Priest / Hickory Hollow is fully equipped to eliminate mold issues. We can restore your home to manageable condition and ease your worries. The source of the moisture needs to be addressed to ensure that it doesn’t return or spread to other areas in the home.

The process of remediation involves steps that, if not done properly, will lead to problems in the future from improper removal. The room needs to be sealed off from other areas to limit exposure to the problem area. A dehumidifier will reduce the moisture level in the air to make permanent removal easier. All individuals participating in the process need to wear proper clothing, goggles and a mask to minimize exposure.

All porous materials including drywall, insulation, curtains, furniture, wood and carpet need treatment. Surfaces need to be scrubbed with a specific chemical to kill the spores completely. When the process is complete the levels in the air need to be checked to guarantee the issue is gone for good. Always wait for damp surfaces to dry before remodeling to prevent another incident from occurring.

Cleaning methods vary from one surface to another. Some take more time and precision than others, which is why you should always use a professionally trained remediation company to do the job right the first time.

Ways to Prevent Mold at Home

4/14/2017 (Permalink)

Open windows help keep mold at bay at home!

Mold is dangerous. When left untreated, it is free to cover walls, ceilings, windows, and rarely checked areas. Give it an inch (water) and it will take it a mile (black, green, or yellow appearance). Mold is a problem, but you can use these proactive measures to ensure it does not take over your home.

Find the Source

Thoroughly investigate the interior and exterior parts of the home for mold. It isn't easy, but it can reveal potential problems. Wet areas such as condensation on windows, pipe leaks under sinks, and moist basements attract the fungus. Look at ceilings for discoloration. Search your bathrooms for wet walls, floors, and condensation around windows, toilets, and shower/tub.

Once homeowners discover the source, determine if the source is easy to clean or remove. Easy removal involves cleaning up the water, ventilating rooms, and removing easy to carry items like indoor plants. Hard removal includes removing carpet, removing a wall piece, and removing water damaged items after a flood.

Dry Wet Areas ASAP

Without moisture, the fungus cannot thrive, so dry a wet area as soon as you spot it. Wipe spills, drops, and standing water with a dry cloth or a paper towel. Most moist areas are dry within a day. In addition, dry wet clothes in the dryer or outside. Bathrooms, the wettest room in the house, require constant attention due to showers, tubs, sinks, and toilets. Wash dirty shower curtains and shower doors.

Ventilation

Help wet areas get dry with ventilation. Just open a window and/or turn on a fan. The area is dry within an hour. Open doors and use dehumidifiers to let fresh air in as well. Tasks such as washing laundry, cooking food, and taking a shower should always receive ventilation nearby. Turn on exhaust fans in the kitchen.

Declutter

It sounds crazy at first glance, but clutter stops air from circulating. Less clutter means the best chance for the fungus to hide and grow. A clean area means fungi has nowhere to hide.

Increase Air Circulation

Circulate air around the home by opening room and closet doors. Additionally, never let furniture touch windows or walls. Condensation builds up, giving fungi a chance to reproduce. Allow space in the back for air circulation.

Prevention is much better than cure, but just in case, have a remediation service handy. Homeowners who prefer DIY methods are risking their health so a professional is best. SERVPRO of Percy Priest / Hickory Hollow is the premier choice to tackle remediation. Contact them for the difficult tasks. Let them remove it before it worsens.

Prevent Dryer Fires With Cleaning

4/7/2017 (Permalink)

Prevent dryer fires with these easy tips!

Dryer fires, though not so common, can be devastating. They will destroy the dryer and can easily set a building on fire if not detected in time. With a dryer being among the most expensive equipment in a regular American household, keeping the appliance working at its best and cleaning the dryer air duct often could save you a fortune.

How do Dryers Catch Fire?

When a your dryer is working hard to extract water from your laundry, it pulls some bits and pieces of fabric from the clothes. This lint might look innocent when wet but is as flammable as brush once it dries up.

The lint will block the vent forcing the temperature in the dryer to build up. When the temperatures go too high, the lint can catch on fire, a fire whose intensity depends on how much lint was in the vent.

According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, more than 15,000 dryers cause major fires in a year resulting to roughly 97 million dollars in losses.

Cleaning Your Ducts Will Save You

Improper duct cleaning is perhaps the only reason that will lead to dryer fires. While others things like an electrical fault or short circuit might be a contributing factor, Keeping your vents freshly cleaned and unobstructed improves air circulation hence keeping the temperatures in check.

Cleaning will also keep the fuel to a possible fire at the bare minimum. If you clean often and your dryer ignites, there will be less lint to burn hence the fire will be manageable if not negligible.

How to Clean The Dryer

Some regular cleaning around the dryer can minimize risks of fires. Clean the filter before and after drying some clothes. This will reduce the amount of lint that ends up in your vents hence how often you have to call in the professionals for thorough vent cleaning.

Cleaning dryer vents might be complex as it involves disconnecting a couple of exhaust ducts. It is wise to let professionals like SERVPRO of Percy Priest / Hickory Hollow handle the actual duct cleaning.

Don’t let a catastrophic fire that could have been cured by simple maintenance cause you a hefty damage. Cleaning your dryer air vent might sound inconveniencing but it is definitely the lesser evil. You will spend less and will up your dryer up and running in no timer.

4 Signs Your Air Ducts Need Cleaning

3/31/2017 (Permalink)

If you notice these signs, give us a call for air duct cleaning!

Most people make it a habit to keep their home clean to maintain a safe and comfortable environment. Although vacuuming and dusting are the norms, it can be easy to neglect cleaning other areas of the home. When you want to improve the quality of the setting, there are a few signs that your air ducts need cleaning.

  1. Visible Mold

It can be easy to underestimate the effects of mold in the home, but the presence of the fungus can lead to serious health effects for residents who live in the building. You may find mold that is present in the ducts, which means that there are moisture issues. Mold is known for causing respiratory issues and will contaminate the air quality in the building. Without proper cleaning, the mold can spread and make the home uninhabitable.

  1. Allergies

You may notice that you begin sneezing or coughing while spending time in your home. Although allergies are common during the spring season, they can continue year-round for those who need to have their ducts cleaned. The dust and pollen can be removed, which will make it easier to breathe.

  1. Dirt and Debris

Dirt and debris will begin to clog ducts over time, which can release pollutants into the air of the home through the registers. Little puffs of dirt may also come out of the vents each time you turn on your heating or air conditioner. Clogged drains can also slow down the efficiency of the airflow. You may find dirt and debris present near vents or on the walls, which is a common sign that they the air ducts need to be cleaned.

  1. Infestations of Insects or Rodents

Critters and insects can find their way into the ducts and can cause serious infestations. Look for small husks or shells that may be present on the side of the ducts. You will likely find droppings left behind if an infestation has occurred. This means the ducts need cleaning by professionals like SERVPRO of Percy Priest/Hickory Hollow.

You can get all your ducts in a row by hiring a professional to remove dirt, grime, and infestations that may be present. By keeping the ducts clean, you can improve the efficiency of your HVAC system and will reduce your energy bills each month.

Clean Homes Sell Faster

3/24/2017 (Permalink)

If you want your house to sell sooner, make sure it's clean!

It should come as no surprise that a dirty home is more difficult to sell. These homes are not just unappealing to the senses. They are a warning flag to anyone that views them. People typically wonder if any maintenance was completed if the homeowner will not take the time to even clean. SERVPRO of Percy Priest/Hickory Hollow works with concerned realtors that have clients who declutter and add a fresh coat of paint but forget about the issue of mold and mildew.

Drainage issues around the home and water damage all lead to serious problems that turn potential home buyers away. Mold and mildew may still be a problem for the seller even if the water drainage or leaking issues were resolved. SERVPRO of Percy Priest/Hickory Hollow can help realtors or homeowners that realize remediation services are needed to remove mold and make the house more appealing. Without services, the mold will remain and continue to spread.

The darker recesses of the home are the most concerning. These unseen areas often contain a lot of moisture due to outside humidity and are generally unnoticed by the homeowner. They are also more challenging to clean than a finished room. Unfortunately, mold in crawl spaces does not remain in crawl spaces. It spreads through HVAC systems into the interior of the home and can penetrate the walls as well. Even a small amount of mold may lead to odors and poor air quality.


A tidy home with a pleasant aroma will sell faster and may sell for more than what the same home would before a thorough cleaning. With mold in crawl spaces, it is hard for any home to look and smell its best. There is no way to hide this unappealing problem and no reason to try. Remediation and repair are fast and easy with professional help and it has the potential to make a home much more desirable. So give us a call if you need help taking care of mold or mildew. Our technicians and equipment will make those problems a thing of the past and your home will soon be off the market!

How Clean Are Your Air Ducts?

3/21/2017 (Permalink)

What's lurking in your ventilation and air ducts?

It's easy to overlook your home's air ducts because they sit hidden in our walls and ceilings. However, “out of sight” does not mean “out of mind”. Your air ducts are one of the most important systems in your home. They require proper maintenance to function correctly and keep your home efficient. So how clean are your air ducts? If you have not had them inspected by a professional, you may find some of the following in your air system.

Dust Mites

Dust mites are tiny relatives of the spider family that live on the dead skin that falls off of people and pets. There is no known way to eliminate them, though you can keep their numbers down to manageable levels.

The feces of dust mites contain proteases, enzymes that are a strong allergen. Those feces are small enough to be airborne. There are usually 100 to 500 mites in a gram of dust, but there can be as many as 19,000 per gram.

Mold & Mildew

Mold and mildew spores are also tiny enough to travel on air currents, and are also impossible to eliminate entirely. If moisture or high humidity is in your ducts, those spores can sprout, and the mold will grow in your ducts, releasing more spores.

Inspect Them Regularly

It is difficult to inspect your ducts without specialized equipment, but you can get an idea of how much dust there might be by removing a vent register and taking a look. If you can't get a good angle for viewing, you can use a hand mirror with a flashlight or take a picture with a cell phone. That would only show a small part of the big picture. SERVPRO of Percy Priest / Hickory Hollow has the tools and team in place to take care of your air duct cleaning needs. Your air ducts are the lungs of your home -- make sure everyone inside is breathing clean air by scheduling an appointment today!

Tips To Transition Your Home From Winter to Spring

3/10/2017 (Permalink)

Get your home ready for Spring!

Tips To Transition Your Home From Winter to Spring

As the weather transitions from cold to warm, it's time to start thinking about the safety of your home. As a homeowner, you'll want to deal with any issues that arise from temperature changes as soon as possible. Here are few tips that will help you as the seasons move from winter to spring.

Keeping Everything Dry

One important thing you can do during the seasonal transition is make sure your home remains dry. When snow and ice thaw, the resulting run-off can make its way into your home and cause major damage. Have a professional take a look to ensure your home is sealed tight. Especially if you have dealt with mold issues in the past.

 

In fact, it's a good idea to have your home tested for mold as the seasons change. Mold can be insidious and it often takes professional help to have it dealt with. Don't delay - have someone look for mold in your home today.

Checking Out Basic Systems

It's also a great time to check out all the basic systems of your house to make sure they are ready for spring. An important system to look at is your HVAC unit, especially if you have not turned on your air conditioning during the past several months. A quick check-up will usually help you more than you can imagine.

 

Having SERVPRO of Percy Priest/Hickory Hollow clean your air ducts is a great way to start spring cleaning. It would surprise you seeing the amount of debris and dust that your air ducts collect. Our crews and equipment can rid the air in your home of the dust that accumulated during the winter!

It's also a good idea to have your plumbing looked at before the weather changes. Drips and leaks that you hadn't noticed over the winter might cause problems as the weather gets warmer. Again, a professional check-up can help you out quite a bit.

Don't despair if you aren't sure what to do during this transition period. Make sure your home is safe, dry, and above all else, that every system in your home works. With a little bit of professional help, you will be ready for the new season.

How Storms Can Damage Your Roof

3/3/2017 (Permalink)

Always check your roof after a major storm!

A few rumbles of thunder, some flashes of lightning and a short period of rain may not be much cause for concern to many. However, if you own a home, a lightning strike or a concentrated downpour could mean expensive roof damage. Let's take a look at how storm damage can wreak havoc on a residential property.

Call SERVPRO of Percy Priest / Hickory Hollow to Help With Water Damage

Over time, moisture can seep through your shingles to the roof deck below. This could cause the wooden deck to rot or warp. Pests such as carpenter ants or termites may either move or eat the wood, which can weaken the entire structure. If the problem is allowed to linger, a roof may need to be replaced years ahead of schedule.

Wind Can Blow Off Shingles

Wind damage can take place during any time of the year. In the winter, strong winds accompany blizzards and other large snow storms. High winds are also normal during the late fall and early spring when strong fronts can move through at a moment's notice. If shingles are blown off the roof, they can expose the decking or other components, which may hasten their demise.


Lightning Strikes Can Cause Fires or Downed Trees

 

If lightning were to hit a tree or a power line, that object can come crashing through your roof. If lightning were to hit your home, it could spark a fire that may damage the roof as well as the entire house. It may be in your best interest to move trees or power lines away from your home to reduce the risk that they make contact with your property if they fall.

Snow Weighs More Than You Think

Snow storms may result in roof damage if the snow is allowed to linger. First, the sheer weight of several inches of dry snow could cause the roof to collapse. If the attic isn't ventilated, it could result in uneven melting, which may lead to ice dams. This may force water back into the home and cause damage.


SERVPRO of Percy Priest / Hickory Hollow can help homeowners repair damage to their home in a timely manner. Depending on how fast repairs are made, it may be possible to salvage property and keep the cost of repairs to a manageable level.

Warning Signs of Mold

2/25/2017 (Permalink)

Be on the lookout for these warning signs!

Mold is a scourge that no home or business owner wants to face, but it is a threat that many people will deal with at some point. Not only does it cause damage to your property, can cause health problems for anyone affected. The key is to recognize the warning signs so you can catch it early and then hire a professional to take care of the remediation process.

A Few Warning Signs

Sometimes mold announces itself in a bold way and other times it stays hidden and gives you only the faintest hint that it is there. That's why it's important to know how to find the warning signs. Green or black discoloration on your walls, ceilings or floors should always be checked for mold. Bad smells, especially an earthy or musty smell, is also an indicator. If you find water spots or water damage inside or on the exterior of your home, that could be another warning sign. One final potential warning sign is allergy or respiratory symptoms that can't be explained by something else.


If you think you have a mold fungus growing in your home, call in a professional like SERVPRO of Percy Priest/Hickory Hollow. We are equipped to perform tests in an area to let you know what's happening in your building. If mold is found, we'll make sure you are aware of the scope of problem and then perform remediation activities. We are an experienced company with extensive experience getting rid of this homeowner scourge. We take our time to do the process right and explain to you what steps we are taking and why. This is not something you want to try to take care of yourself or leave in the hands of inexperienced contractors. Call us today to deal with your problem.

Are You Seeing Signs of a Drainage Problem?

2/17/2017 (Permalink)

Don't let a drainage problem linger - it can cause major damage!

You don't need a degree in engineering or plumbing to find drainage problems. Sometimes you'll catch them when they're still a small inexpensive fix. This saves you potentially thousands of dollars down the road. There are also times when we don't catch water damage until it's a costly problem. To help, here are a few tips to see if you could be dealing with a drainage problem:

1) Dumping Downspouts

Did you know you can overflow 10 bathtubs with rainfall from your roof? That can produce up to 1,000 square feet of water or 600 gallons of runoff! This kind of dumping can land close to your foundations and create issues. Depending on the structure of your house, it could end up in your basement and walls. That much water running through a home means destroyed flooring, furnishings, and possessions. The threat of mold and mildew increases in these situations as well. An even worse scenario involves  water embedding in the soil and then harming the foundation walls. In this case, you’ll  want professionals like the ones at SERVPRO of Percy Priest/Hickory Hollow to ensure you never see that kind of damage.


2) Walls with Flaking & Deposits

If you are finding gray or white crust on your basement walls, you are looking at mineral deposits. This is called “efflorescence,” a condition created by evaporating water. Another sign you should be on the lookout for are big flaking patches. This is called “spalling” and is an indicator there could be water damage in the masonry. Before the situation gets worse, have your downspouts, gutters, and soil grading checked. Foundation integrity is a big problem and one to avoid at all costs.


3) Water Stains in the Basement

Stains on the floors or walls of your basement, or unexplained puddles, can be the result of surface water. This could also be the result of water that's traveling underground. The pros at SERVPRO of Percy Priest/Hickory Hollow know how to look for signs of fluctuating water tables or to see if the basement lies below a municipal storm drain. The sooner this problem is dealt with, the less the damage and expense.

Drainage can be a slow, invisible threat to your property. SERVPRO of Percy Priest/Hickory Hollow is the ideal resource for finding and correcting these threats quickly and affordably. Give us a call today!

How to Prepare for or Recover From Ice Damage

2/10/2017 (Permalink)

When you live in Tennessee, you know that plunging temperatures mean one thing - ice. While ice makes it very dangerous for drivers, ice is even more dangerous for homeowners. From bursting pipes to sagging ceilings, frozen water can wreak havoc with the homes of the Antioch and Percy Priest areas. When you know ice is on the way, there are certain steps you can take to prepare. Even if these steps don't work, there are also steps you can take to make sure that the restoration work is done correctly the first time. Ice is an enemy, but it's an enemy that you can defeat with the right knowledge.

Ice Damage Preparation

There are a few steps that homeowners know must be taken when the temperature drops below freezing. First, your home needs to be sealed as well as possible to keep heat in. This, generally, means keeping your windows and doors closed as much as possible. Once this is done, you'll need to make sure that your pipes are not given a chance to freeze. Keep the water in your pipes moving by letting your faucets drip and expose pipes to hot air as much as possible by keeping your cabinets open. This can help stop pipes from freezing and help you to prevent most severe internal ice problems.

As far as external damage goes, the best recommendation is to keep outside faucets covered if possible, and make sure you keep your car either in a garage or a car port. You should also keep any tree limbs on your property trimmed away from your home as the weight of ice can cause limbs to break.

Ice Damage Recovery

The recovery process from ice is a little more complex than preparation. There are several types of damage that might occur, so your main job is to mitigate further damage until professionals arrive. Your smartest move will always be to inspect your property thoroughly after ice to make sure that no major damage has occurred.

If the damage is structural, do what you can to move personal items out of the area and then call for help. A good damage remediation team can get to work quickly and help you to deal with major structural problems. Always let a professional deal with any damage that occurs due to ice, as the problems are often quite severe.


You should also always make sure to call SERVPRO of Percy Priest/Hickory Hollow. They are able to not only help you make sure that no water damage occurs, but will assist in recovering from ice issues by checking for the damage you can't always see. With the right help, you can recover from damage caused by ice.

4 Tips for Keeping Your Water-Prone Rugs in Top Condition

2/3/2017 (Permalink)

Make sure your rugs and carpets stay dry!

4 Tips for Keeping Your Water-Prone Rugs in Top Condition

Decorative and antique rugs are beautiful and important pieces of room decor. Many rugs in nice homes are handmade, expensive, or unique with history. A handmade or expensive rug can last for generations if they are cared for properly. For example, a lot of people enjoy having large, lavish rugs outside of their hot tubs. This can make caring for the rug an arduous task. If you have a beautiful, expensive, or handmade rug, be sure to follow specific cleaning instructions. Here are four tips for keeping your exterior rugs in the best condition possible if water damage occurs:


Tip 1
Regardless of how much fun you have inside of your spa, it gets serious the minute you finish drying off. The first tip is to remove the water from the rug as quickly as possible. It does not matter if you stepped on another towel to dry off because your rug is wet from humidity. There are vacuum cleaners known as wet-dry cleaners designed to remove water from carpets and rugs. Here is a list of the best ones from October 2016.

Tip 2
Exhaust fans are your friends! If you have an indoor tub, keep the fans going constantly and have exhaust fans in the windows. This will help to dry out the water damage to the rug and circulate fresh air.

Tip 3
Dehumidifiers remove excess moisture out of the air and your rug. Even after vacuuming and using fans, there will still be moisture trapped in your rug. A dehumidifier will cool the air and limit mildew and mold growth.

Tip 4
Saving the best for last! Have the carpet and the spa room cleaned using a service like SERVPRO of Percy Priest / Hickory Hollow. We know exactly how to keep your spa and rugs looking brand new. Give us a call today!

 

Caring for a Rug Prone Subjected to Constant Water Damage

Rugs positioned outside of hot tubs are there for decoration, but no matter how beautiful or durable they are, water damage is ugly. Mold is the biggest concern, so consistent cleaning is on the schedule.

How to Prepare or Recover From Frozen Pipes

1/27/2017 (Permalink)

Be careful when freezing temperatures hit your area!

How to Prepare or Recover From Frozen Pipes

Snow, ice and frigid temperatures don't often visit Tennessee, but when it does, it can be hazardous. Harsh winter weather will damage the pipes and homes of many residents if you aren't prepared. SERVPRO of Percy Priest / Hickory Hollow has a few tips to keep you and your home safe to help prevent your home’s plumbing from freezing over.


Getting Prepared to Combat Winter Weather and Water Damage

Frozen pipes can lead to an expensive, stressful and messy situation. So the following information will focus on winter weather advice from a variety of sources, including the American Red Cross.


Preventing Frozen Pipes Will Prevent Water Damage and the Need for Expensive Restoration

Fixing burst pipes is expensive, so proper prevention is key. Cracked and burst pipes occur because water expands when it freezes. No matter what material your pipes consist of, they are going to face expansion problems.Plastic or metal, exposed pipes are the most at risk if they are exposed to the cold temperatures such as, sprinkler and swimming pool lines, hose bibs and supply pipes.Supply pipes that are in unheated crawl spaces, basements and garages are also susceptible.

 

Prevention Specifics

There are quite a few preventative measures, and it all depends on when you want to implement them. You can begin preparations before winter, or the steps can be carried based on a forecast of cold weather. There is no risk to your pipes or property if you prepare right away. Here are the best five courses of action to help prevent ahome pipe burst disaster.

 

  1. Drain water from supply lines to outside items like hoses or sprinklers.
  2. Comb your attic, basement, garage, and crawl space for any unheated water lines and insulate them.
  3. Take all your outdoor hoses and remove, drain, and store them somewhere heated.
  4. Check your house thoroughly, including the basement, crawl spaces, the attic and garage. Insulate any of these hidden water lines.
  5. Insulate water lines and pipes with sleeves, heat tapes or cables, providing extra protection.

Recovering from frozen pipes

Sometimes, pipes are going to freeze and burst no matter what you do or burst due to poor preparation. Fortunately, there are steps to thaw pipes and solutions available in case they burst.

  1. Keep your faucets open and running.
  2. Use an electric heating pad and hair dryer to thaw out the frozen section of the pipe.
  3. Continue applying heat until water pressure is restored.
  4. If you are unable to locate the frozen area, contact a plumber as soon as possible.

Worst Case Scenario

If you are unable to thaw the pipe or the weather is too cold to manage the problems alone, call a plumber immediately. SERVPRO of Percy Priest / Hickory Hollow can help manage restoration from any water disaster before more damage occurs.

Dealing with frozen and burst pipes can be a stressful experience. We hope these tips help prepare and protect your home this winter.

4 of the Best Carpet Types for Middle Tennessee Weather

1/23/2017 (Permalink)

These are four of the best carpet types to consider for Middle Tennessee!

If you are thinking about installing new carpeting in your Tennessee home, you may have grand dreams of improving the beauty of your home décor through the right selection of flooring. Carpeting is a wonderful material that adds soft texture, noise control and even warmth to your space, but there are many types of carpeting to choose from. A smart idea is to choose a carpet material that will hold up well with Middle Tennessee weather conditions in mind. Local weather conditions can be harsh, with everything from high humidity levels to rapid temperature fluctuations and extreme temperatures on both ends of the spectrum. These are four of the best carpet types to consider for the area:

 

Nylon Carpet

The good news is that most carpets are made out of nylon, so you will have plenty of options to consider. This material is among the most durable option available, so it is ideal in high-traffic areas of the home. It also is easy to clean, is soil and mildew-resistant, and is non-allergenic to boot.

 

Polyester

Polyester is less common and less durable than nylon, but it is still a smart decision for the area because it is non-allergenic and wicks away moisture. It’s also easy to clean and is resistant to moths and mildew, which are both concerns in the Nashville & Percy Priest area.

 

Wool

Wool is a higher end material that has very long longevity, but it can be more expensive than nylon and polyester materials. It has a luxurious look and feel to it and has exceptional resiliency and durability for high-traffic areas. It’s also very stain resistant. In the harsh climate Middle Tennessee is known for, investing in a high-end, natural material may be a wise move to make.

 

Acrylic

Acrylic carpeting is a synthetic material that is most closely associated with wool. Primarily used in commercial environments, it does have some applications in high traffic areas of the home. It is resistant to soil, staining, static, mildew and moths, and it is easy to clean. Another great benefit of this material is that it resists fading when exposed to sunlight, and there are many sunny days that residents in the local area enjoy.


When you invest in new carpeting for your Middle Tennessee home, things like staining, carpet cleaning and more should come to mind. Some materials are easier to maintain and to keep clean than others. Even when you make a wise decision about which carpet type to install in your home, all carpeting will need to be professionally cleaned from time to time. SERVPRO of Percy Priest/Hickory Hollow can improve the look of each of these types of carpets for you so that you can continue to enjoy the benefits of clean carpeting for years to come.

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