If you have a fire or water emergency, please call us now at (865) 690-9658

To have the optimal experience while using this site, you will need to update your browser. You may want to try one of the following alternatives:

Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

Archived Blog Posts

Water Damage Tips

3/2/2020 (Permalink)

Water Damage caused from washer leaking in Knoxville Water Damage in Knoxville

When dealing with an incidence of water damage or flooding in your home, the last thing you need to be doing is spending hours researching every detail of the water mitigation and restoration process. Highlighted below are a few essential tips to remember before beginning any water damage restoration project.

  1. Time is of the Essence: Once water damage has occurred, you have 24 – 48 hours to address the water damage before mold and mildew begin to grow. This mold may pose a health risk to your family, as well as cause an unnecessary additional headache for you during what is already stressful time.
  2. Safety First: Before you begin any remediation, ensure that you are not endangering yourself or others. Consider if it is safe to be in the house before starting to conduct any restoration activities yourself.
  3. Document Damage: Be sure to take plenty of photos of the affected area(s) before beginning any water damage remediation. Catalog lost items, along with their value, for your insurance company.
  4. Remove Affected Materials: This includes the disposal of floor coverings; carpet, cushion, pad, felt and sheet vinyl, laminate, or tile flooring materials. Remove wet items and clear the floor to mitigate damages.
  5. Call in the Experts: Call SERVPRO of West Knoxville at 865-690-9658 for live help 24/7 from one of our supervisors. When you make a call, day or night, you talk to an experienced professional that can help you in understanding the water damage cleanup process. We’re here to help make the best of a stressful situation!

How to get rid of Mold

2/12/2020 (Permalink)

Mold damage in Knoxville Home due to water damage. Mold Damage Knoxville

Have you ever heard anyone exclaim, "I love mold!" and then proudly give you a tour of their home, pointing out the spots where the beloved mold exists? No. No, you have not. That's because no one likes mold, and people sure as heck don't want it in their home!

But it happens. Mold is everywhere! Literally. And there's just one element that helps mold manifest itself into those ugly black spores that most people are familiar with. That one thing—is moisture.  

One solution to thwarting a potential mold problem is ventilation. Here are some suggestions on where to ventilate and how to do it properly.

Steps To Take:

Investigate

Now dehumidifiers can help control the moisture, but eliminating any water leaks or standing water throughout the house is a must. It's a good idea to inspect your home to see if you've had any recent water damage that would lead to producing mold. (For what to look for regarding possible water damage in your home, read  here.) 

Control Moisture

Controlling the moisture in your home is a good start because, as we know, moisture = mold. However, proper ventilation will help keep your home, and those areas are known to love moisture, such as your bathroom and attic, dry.

Where To Ventilate:

1. Bathrooms

Speaking of your bathroom, being that most are typically small and enclosed, the moisture from hot showers and baths (especially if you keep the door closed) can be a breeding ground for mold. This is one room where fans and vents should be a given. Luckily they're easy to install too. Just make sure that the vent, if it goes through the attic, that it doesn't stop there—it continues through the roof. Otherwise, you're just guiding the air to another enclosed area.

2. Attic

The attic is another spot where you will need ventilation, or you could end up with mold throughout your insulation, wood, and duct space. Some tips for attic ventilation are:

  1. Make sure your ductwork is sealed to prevent blowing warm moist air into the attic.
  2. Seal off where your recessed lights are or purchase sealed recessed cans.
  3. If portions of your insulation have eroded down, don't pile more on top of it, remove it and place new insulation in its place.
  4. Instead of a turbine or fan venting system, perhaps go with a soffit and ridge system. Soffits allow air intake at the lowest point of the roof, where a ridge vent is a ventilation strip placed along the ridgeline of the roof and allows heat to escape up and out of the attic. Plus, there are no moving parts with a soffit and ridge ventilation system.

3. Kitchen

Similar to the bathrooms, kitchens also need ventilation systems, and they need to go up and out of the home, rather than into the attic or the walls. You also want to make sure you choose the best hood for your stove. Whether you have a standard or high-performance stove, or if your oven contains a grill, the shade best suited for your furnace will vary.

4. Basement

Due to the difficulty of keeping air moving and proper ventilation in basements, they are a common area for mold growth. An unvented basement will produce condensation, forming puddles, which in turn will become a breeding ground for mold. To combat this issue, concentrate on maintaining the moisture levels in your basement by using a dehumidifier.

Educate

On top of all the tips above, make sure you educate yourself about your area's climate and how it responds to moisture. And remember, mold and mold prevention is not one-size-fits-all; sometimes, moisture problems require more complex solutions, and sources of moisture may be hidden. 

If you discover you have mold in your home, for goodness sake, DON'T let it go untreated. Also, be sure to call the professionals to remediate your home correctly. If you believe you have a mold problem, call a company that is licensed and trained in mold remediation, such as SERVPRO of West Knoxville

When fire, flood, or storm damage occurs to your Knoxville residential or commercial property, contact SERVPRO of West Knoxville—a restoration company you can trust to get the job done professionally and efficiently, to your expectations, satisfaction guaranteed.

Prepare Your Business

2/12/2020 (Permalink)

Knoxville business has fire damage Knoxville Fire Damage

8 Steps to Prepare My Business for a Disaster

Roughly 40% of businesses impacted by a disaster won’t survive because they didn’t have a recovery plan in place. The stunning wave of problems that arise in the aftermath of an accident can derail the unprepared. Please don’t get caught off guard when it comes to being well prepared for disaster. Although nobody likes to think about it, disaster can strike—from the devastating aftermath of a destructive tornado to the inconvenience of a burst pipe or hot water heater, and disaster can come.

At SERVPRO of West Knoxville, we know that you want to be a successful business owner. In order to do that, you need to minimize the risk of downtime that a disaster can cause. The problem is that without a plan disaster could have a detrimental effect on your organization. That’s a stressful position to be in, and it’s avoidable with some forethought and planning.

Don’t get caught off guard. Get disaster plan steps in place before disaster strikes.

1. Take an objective look at your overall risk

Look internally and externally at your risk.

  • Common risks—Power outage, human error, and failed technology can all present disasters that put your business at risk.
  • Weather-related risks—Storms, tornadoes, and floods are all a possibility when you live in Knoxville—and businesses need to be prepared.
  • Fire—The risk of fire should be planned for no matter your location in the U.S. The devastating effects of smoke damage alone can hit a business hard.

2. Evaluate your business’s most critical daily operations

Make a note of all vital aspects.

  • Payroll, billing, and service fulfillment constitute critical functions.
  • Determine a process for restoring them in case of disaster.
  • What equipment and materials are vital to your daily operations?

3. Decide where you can relocate if the need arises

“Plan B” needs to be in place.

  • To continue your primary business operations, where can you locate that if your building suffers a disaster?
  • Make a note of your alternate location such as your home, another branch, or a nearby business vendor, and decide on a plan for recovery.

4. Stay current on backing up your data

Avoid devastating loss of data.

  • A daily backup is a good idea to keep your information safe.
  • Keep your data offsite, so it remains secure if your business experiences disaster.
  • Test your data retrieval capabilities to verify your backup system is working.
  • Plan how you would replace vital technology such as computers and printers if they were destroyed.

5. Talk with your vendors

It’s always better to make a disaster plan and not need it than it is to need a plan and not have one.

  • Talk through what you would do to continue receiving the materials your business needs after a disaster.
  • Develop a relationship with additional vendors in case it is necessary.

6. Store emergency food and water in case of disaster

Get practical things in order.

  • It’s wise to keep nonperishable food and bottled water on hand in case of an emergency.
  • In addition to food and water, gather the following and have them located in an emergency kit in case of disaster: flashlights, batteries, a radio, cash, passwords, other vital documents, and a first aid kit.

7. Admonish your employees to have a disaster plan in place

Ask employees to prepare an emergency plan for themselves and their loved ones.

  • Your greatest asset is your employees. When planning for disasters, if you get everything in place for your building, but not your employees, there’s trouble ahead.
  • Please work with your employees on their disaster plans so their recovery time from disaster will be minimized.
  • Implement a plan for communicating with your employees if disaster strikes.

8. Develop a communication plan in case of disaster

Be sure to deliver the program in advance so everyone is aware of it.

  • You, your staff, and your vendors should implement a plan for communication in case a disaster causes your phones to stop working.
  • Make a hard copy of email addresses, phone numbers, and, if necessary, physical addresses of your staff and vendors. Store it away from your building in case disaster strikes.

At SERVPRO of West Knoxville, we’ve seen how a disaster can bring significant downtime. We’ve also worked with hundreds of business owners and property managers to ensure they are prepared and covered in case of an emergency.

Commercial Emergency Restoration Management Plan

We believe that businesses should be able to recover quickly and effectively in the case of disaster. Here’s how simple it is to implement our services ahead of time, so you’re ready if disaster strikes:

  1. Call and talk with our team.
  2. Get a complete assessment and recommendation.
  3. Be covered in case of disaster.

Restore your commercial property and recover your business

SERVPRO of West Knoxville is prepared to address your commercial property’s emergency restoration needs promptly, and our team draws from over 50 years of experience. We provide a variety of commercial property restoration services, including:

  • Storm damage restoration—We remove fallen trees for your safety. We provide quick, temporary, safe roof repairs, and offer a temporary power supply when needed.
  • Cleaning and contents management—We preserve relevant paperwork, clean fabric, and protect fragile items in the aftermath of the disaster.
  • Water damage restoration—We restore your business after water damage, including water extraction, drying, and dehumidifying.
  • Fire and smoke restoration—Our team eliminates smoke residue and deodorizes commercial buildings.
  • Mold remediation—We eliminate mold and prevent any future mold growth.

WEATHER WARNINGS ON THE GO

1/2/2020 (Permalink)

Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEA) are emergency messages sent by authorized government-alerting authorities through your mobile carrier. Government partners include local and state public safety agencies, FEMA, the FCC, the Department of Homeland Security, and the National Weather Service. There is no sign-up required. Alerts are sent automatically to WEA-capable phones during a threatening weather emergency.
When you receive a WEA, follow any action advised by the emergency message, especially if it involves an immediate evacuation. Seek more details from your preferred television or radio station, NOAA Weather Radio, or another trusted source of information.

3 Things To Teach Your Children About a Fire Escape Plan

11/30/2019 (Permalink)

Paper with the title "Escape Plan." For a parent in a Knoxville, TN, home, ensuring your kid's safety in the event of a fire may be a top priority.

For a parent in a Knoxville, TN, home, ensuring your kids safety in the event of a fire may be a top priority. This is why it’s important to include them in your fire escape plans. While your plan may include important things such as the location of a fire extinguisher or the number of a fire damage restoration company, you may also want to include fire safety lessons for your young ones. Here are three things you may want to teach them so that they know what to do during an emergency.


1. Where Are the Exits
During a home fire, it’s important to know where the exits are in case of a fire. Teach your children how to open an emergency window, or how to tell which door out is the safest. It might help to make a game out of learning possible escape routes.


2. How To Escape Safely
You may also want to teach your kids safety techniques for getting out of the home during an emergency. Teach them to crawl under the smoke, and also to test for heat from a door before opening it. Teach them to press the back of the hand to the door to feel for heat, and if it’s not hot, open slowly and check to make sure the way is clear.


3. Where To Meet Up
Another thing every member of your family should know is where to meet up after a fire. You will want to choose a location safely away from the home that every family member can easily find. This may be a mail box, or a neighbor’s yard. During your fire drills practice getting there as the end goal.


When ensuring your kid's safety in a fire escape plan you may want to teach them these three things. How to get out of the home in the event of a fire, how to do so safely, and where to go afterward. Doing so can help ensure that every member of your family knows what to do during an emergency.

Tips for Stopping Plant Mildew in its Tracks

11/27/2019 (Permalink)

Plant with mildew Plant mildew may not kill your favorite fern immediately, but over time it can cause some serious damage

Whether a chic cactus or a beautiful begonia, plants are attractive, air-clearing additions that generally brighten the atmosphere of our homes. But like many things in the home, plants are susceptible to mildew. While plant mildew can seriously harm foliage, there are ways to prevent it from taking hold. Follow these tips to keep the plants in your Blue Grass, TN, home from becoming victims of this household menace.

What is Mildew?

Like mold, mildew is an unsightly type of fungus. It feeds on organic materials like clothes, paper, ceilings and walls, thriving on moist air. Unlike mold, however, mildew isn’t black. Instead mildew growth:

  • Appears like white or gray spots
  • Looks dusty or chalky
  • Takes hold when plant foliage is dry

Mildew can quickly coat foliage, blocking the sunlight your plant needs. The result is a plant that stops growing and eventually dies. Fortunately, solving a plant fungus problem can be easier than you think.

Clean It Off

Luckily, some of the best tools against plant mildew are right in your cabinet. Start by mixing baking soda with liquid soap to form a spray. Spritz your plants to neutralize existing mildew and prevent new mildew from forming. Spray foliage with mouthwash or mix and spray a solution of one part milk and three parts water to further paralyze mildew spores.

Water Your Plants

While mildew likes moisture, it tends to form on dry plants. Powdery mildew proliferates on dry leaves, in areas with low lighting and high humidity. Keep a regular watering schedule to ensure your plants aren’t becoming dry breeding grounds for this powdery fungus.
Plant mildew may not kill your favorite fern immediately, but over time it can cause some serious damage. Use these simple kitchen tricks to shut it down, or contact a mold specialist to learn more about stopping this and other household fungi in their tracks.

Understanding Plant Mildew

11/22/2019 (Permalink)

Closeup shot of mold growth. It’s natural to be alarmed when you see ugly plant mildew attacking your favorite foliage.

Despite your best efforts, your house plant is covered in white spots. What gives? Powdery plant mildew is a common bane of plant enthusiasts. And while it won’t kill your plants immediately, it can gradually diminish their health. On the bright side, the tools you need to get rid of it are likely in your kitchen. Keep reading to learn more about this fungus and how you can clear it from your Knoxville, TN, home.


What is Powdery Mildew Anyway?
Mildew is commonly mentioned alongside mold, and with good reason: They’re both fungi. Whereas mold tends to be darker and either furry or slimy, mildew often shows up as white or gray, with a powdery, almost chalk-like texture. Mildew attacking plants:

Spreads easily
Favors dry foliage
Thrives in warmth

What Are the Signs of Plant Mildew?
Spots are the telltale signs of a powdery mildew infestation. These white or gray patches may show up on the tops of leaves. The patches will they’ll spread to the underside of leaves and eventually down stems. Foliage will begin to brown and wilt as the fungus leaches nutrients from your plant.

Treating Mildew on Plants
Luckily, it’s relatively easy to get rid of mildew with basic pantry items. Mix up the baking soda and liquid soap to make a spray that can easily neutralize existing mildew and prevent new spores from growing. Plain mouthwash can also be used. Another old trick is mixing three parts of water with one part of milk and spraying leaves. Each substance has an antiseptic effect on mildew.

It’s natural to be alarmed when you see ugly plant mildew attacking your favorite foliage. But you don’t have to be intimidated. Use the above tips to erase plant fungus and consult a local garden or mold removal expert to learn what you can do to prevent mildew growth in the first place.

What To Do Right After a Fire

11/22/2019 (Permalink)

Board up windows and doors of a blue cape cod style suburban home Board up home in Hardin Valley, TN

3 Steps To Take After A Fire

A fire in your home in Hardin Valley, TN, can be devastating. There are people who can give you the assistance you need to rebuild your house if this happens. To expedite the fire restoration process, you will need to file a fire claim with your insurance company. Take these three steps right after the fire happens to make the process go more smoothly.

1. Call Your Insurance Agent

The company that provides your fire insurance is the first call you should make after the flames have been put out. This starts the claims process. An adjuster comes to assess the damage and determine how much the insurance company will pay. The longer you wait to contact your insurance company, the higher the chance that your home will sustain damage that won't be covered.

2. Vacate Your Property

You may be tempted to start cleaning up the moment you hang up from the call with your insurance agent. Fight this urge and leave damage mitigation to the professionals. Instead, take pictures of the damage so that you have an accurate record of them. You may also consider making a list of items that need to be replaced and the approximate replacement cost. This can help you when you are filing your claim, especially if the fire restoration cleanup starts before your adjuster arrives.

3. Protect Your Home

It's likely that the fire that ravaged your home also left it vulnerable to the elements and unwanted guests. When fire remediation specialists arrive to start the smoke cleaning process, they will likely board up the parts of your home that normally would be closed to intruders, animals or bad weather. This can prevent further damage and save you the time and expense of extra repairs.
Fire damage to your home can seem overwhelming. However, there are only a few steps needed to start the fire restoration process.

Is Mold Damage Covered by Homeowner’s Insurance?

11/20/2019 (Permalink)

Mold growth on blue wall. When fungus growth does threaten your home in Knoxville, TN, take a good look at your insurance or call SERVPRO for advice.

Once a small amount of water gets where it doesn’t belong, mold can start to develop. While the health hazards are still being discussed, one certain problem with fungus growth is that it damages (and can eventually destroy) the materials that houses are made from. Some homeowner’s policies may include mold insurance, but it depends on the wording and circumstances.


Your Insurance May Cover Mold Damage
Usually, the most important consideration is if the mold was the natural consequence of a “covered peril.” That typically includes such things as the following:

Fire damage
Storm and lightning damage
Accidental discharge from plumbing and appliances

So, if a lightning bolt strikes and damages your roof, allowing water to enter it, that would be covered. If lightning hits a tree, causing it to fall on the roof and encourage fungus growth, the same applies.


There Are Limits, Conditions and Exceptions
When experts tell you to read your insurance policy carefully, it’s because there can be massive differences in the fine print. For instance, even if the mold damage was caused by a covered peril, you won’t be covered if the damage was reasonably preventable – such as knowing about a leak but letting it go for longer than necessary.


Also, homeowner’s insurance will never cover damages from flooding; the National Flood Insurance Program provides that. Keeping a higher indoor humidity than normal also could trigger an exception.


Some policies may have a rider or endorsement that specifically does offer mold coverage. However, there are usually limits to the payout, capping damage awards. Finally, any insurance claim can potentially raise the cost of your premiums, so in some circumstances, you may be better off paying a professional mold cleanup company yourself to fix the problem.


When fungus growth does threaten your home in Knoxville, TN, take a good look at your insurance or call SERVPRO for advice. They can answer your questions and take pride in leaving your home “Like it Never Even Happened.”

What to Do If Your Flight is Canceled

11/12/2019 (Permalink)

Flight information on an airport showing cancelled flights because of a thunderstorm Flight information on an airport showing cancelled flights because of a thunderstorm

Storm Tips That Can Make Your Wait a Little More Comfortable

Storms can cause a variety of issues. It can leave businesses in need of storm damage repair, and it can interfere with people's flight plans. Dealing with a canceled flight in Rocky Hill, TN, is something no one wants to deal with. It isn't uncommon for flights to be delayed or canceled due to a snow storm, thunderstorm, or even high winds. It's inconvenient, but there are several things you can do to help get to your desired location sooner rather than later. If you are stuck for a while, there are some storm tips that can at least make your wait a little more comfortable.

Looking for Alternatives

There may be an alternative that can help you get where you need to be sooner.

  • You can call the airline to see if there is anything they can do.
  • You should also speak with the gate attendant to see if there is a flight they can get you on.
  • You can do your own research as well.

These options may help you find a seat on another flight so you can get to your destination sooner. Consider looking for a connecting flight, even if you were originally on a flight that gets you straight from A to B.

Ask to Be Put Up in a Hotel

If you are stuck in the city due to a canceled flight, with no hope for a same day switch, you can ask the airline if they are willing to put you up in a hotel. This can at least make you a little more comfortable before you decide what your best option is. They may or may not accommodate you, but it's something to consider. They may be willing to provide you with food vouchers or a discount.
It can be really frustrating to deal with a canceled flight, and sometimes, there is nothing you can do. See if there are alternatives that can get you to your destination sooner, by either making a few phone calls or checking with the airline attendants. If all else fails, make yourself comfortable for a while until you can figure out an alternative to get home.

The Financial Toll of Mold Cleaning

11/7/2019 (Permalink)

Closeup shot of mold growth. Cleanup costs for a crawlspace or small area may be as little as $500 and as much as $4,000.

As a homeowner, you will spend a significant amount of money to keep your Knoxville, TN, house looking nice and feeling comfortable. If you detect mold in any part of your home, it is important to act quickly and hire a professional to handle mold removal. It is helpful to know what you should expect to pay to rid this fungus from your property.

How Mold Develops
Mold spores are present outside, floating in the air. They can get into your home on people and pets that enter. The microscopic spores can also come through windows, doors, cracks, and vents. In a perfect environment, the fungus can grow and spread. This happens in the following ways:

When there is poor ventilation in humid areas of the home
When there are slow leaks in the plumbing or HVAC system
When water is not removed and the affected areas are not dried

The Inspection
If you discover mold at home, you should call a professional mold remediation company. An initial inspection of the area and identification of mold will cost between $200 and $600.


Testing for Mold
The remediation team will use a test called air sampling to assess the need of black mold removal. The samples go to a lab where a technician does an analysis. This can cost as much as $150.


The Cleanup
The most expensive and time-consuming part is the actual mold removal. The remediation team will tear out porous material, clean and disinfect walls and floors, and use a special vacuum with air filtration. The cost of this process will vary depending on the extent of the damage and the size of the room.

Cleanup costs for a crawlspace or small area may be as little as $500 and as much as $4,000. If there is mold damage throughout the house, and if there is structural damage, you may be looking at a total cost of more than $25,000.


Mold removal may challenge your budget. However, this is an important process that you don't want to neglect.

File a Water Damage Claim in 5 Easy Steps

10/28/2019 (Permalink)

Tile flooring with pool of water. There are unique aspects to every type of insurance claim.

There are unique aspects to every type of insurance claim. When dealing with water damage, there is an urgent need to dry out your home before mold becomes a problem. Follow these steps to get the claims process moving as soon as possible:


1. Notify the Insurance Company
Once the flow of water from the pipe burst stops, contact your insurer. Do this immediately, even if it is 2 a.m. on Sunday. Leave a voice mail if nobody answers. Start the claim if you get through to an agent. Explain your problem and ask the agent about your coverage. Ask for instructions, then write them down and confirm that you understand them. Request the preferred vendor list so that you can select water damage recovery experts in the Knoxville, TN, area.


2. Follow the Agent’s Instructions
Instructions may involve filling out an insurance claim and preparing for a visit by the adjuster. It is essential to complete these tasks as quickly as possible. If the agent authorized you to contact a cleanup company, do so quickly. Cleanup needs to start as soon as possible.


3. Take Photographs of the Flood Damage
Now is the time to take photos to show what was affected. The adjuster needs to see the original damage. A smartphone is a terrific tool for documenting any issues.


4. Begin the Recovery Process. Make sure that the damaged area is safe to enter. It may be necessary to turn off the power. Next, you should proceed to remove everything you plan to keep. Store undamaged items in a dry area. Send the damaged items out for restoration.


5. Give the Adjuster a Tour of the Damage
Provide the adjuster with your pictures and the information requested by the agent. If all the information is available, this should go smoothly.

Once your insurance claim approval is complete and the local water damage recovery experts are on the job, your home will be on the fast track to restoration.

3 Differences Between Flood Damage and Storm Damage

10/26/2019 (Permalink)

Flooded building entrance Flooded building in Farragut, TN

3 Differences Between Flood Damage and Storm Damage

If your Farragut, TN, building is damaged during a storm, you might think that all of the water damage falls into one category, but this is not necessarily the case. Flood damage is actually a bit different from other types of damage caused by water. The following are a few distinctions.

1. Where the Water Comes From

Perhaps the easiest way to determine whether you are dealing with flood damage or other water damage is to figure out where the water is coming from. Generally, if the water comes from above, then it is regular water damage. This can include leaks and broken pipes. If the water is rising up from the ground, then this is always considered flood water.

2. The Level of Water Contamination

A lot of the water involved in storm damage is considered to be category 1 or clean water. Water from damaged pipes or supply lines also belongs to this category. Flood water, on the other hand, is category 3 or black water. This means that it is highly contaminated and should be avoided. This is because water from a flood mixes with sewage and other contaminants on the ground. Anything that it touches will need to be thrown away or thoroughly sanitized.

3. Whether It is Included in Your Insurance Policy

Another important difference between damage from a flood and damage from other water sources is that flooding is usually not included in your basic insurance policy. If you want coverage for this type of damage, then you will need to purchase a separate flood policy.
Whether you are dealing with clean water or flood damage, you will need to have it taken care of quickly to avoid further damage to your building. Moisture of any type can contribute to weakened materials or mold growth. A cleanup and restoration service can remove the water and perform any necessary repairs.

When Shouldn't You Use Drain Cleaner?

10/18/2019 (Permalink)

New gray and brown drain pipes isolated over white Plastic pipes

When Shouldn't You Use Drain Cleaner?

You may be tempted to treat a clogged drain with store-bought drain cleaner in Bearden, TN. However, you should be careful about when and how you apply this potent chemical liquid. There are certain situations in which drain cleaner should never be used, in order to prevent more damage from occurring.

Plastic Pipes

The chemicals in drain cleaner react together to transfer electrons to and from organic substances, causing them to break down. This process also produces heat- that's how they force their way down further into the pipe. These two factors mean that they can warp and eat through piping made of pliable materials, like plastic. The three types of cleaners you should stay away from if you do have plastic pipes are:

  • Sulfiric or muriatic acid cleaners
  • Lye or caustic potash cleaners
  • Bleach, peroxide or nitrate cleaners

Total Blockage

Often, drain cleaners won't be able to clear a clogged drain if there is a solid mass of hair, oil and debris completely blocking the flow of air and liquid. So, if they are used in these situations, the cleaner ends up sitting there above the block. Given enough time, the strong chemicals can deal out some real damage to your pipes, even if they aren't plastic or old.

Old Pipes

Old pipes will have a lot of the same problems as plastic pipes, because they are brittle and delicate. If you discover that your pipes are old or rusting, you are probably better off replacing your plumbing rather than going through sewage cleaning. New pipes are the best way to ensure that one doesn't burst and you have water damage remediation to deal with instead of a blockage.
Most people don't even know there are other options for dealing with a clogged drain. Instead of chemical cleaner, you can try  or biological options, like a drain snake. Ask your local hardware store for more guidance.

When To Replace the Bathroom Supply Line?

10/16/2019 (Permalink)

Leaking bathroom supply line. Pay attention to changes in your plumbing. Subtle noises could indicate issues are developing.

Are you hearing bubbling or whistling noises when you flush the toilet? Do you find yourself fixing more clogs than usual? If so, you could have supply line damage. Call out a plumber in Knoxville, TN, to inspect the pipes and determine if action is needed. After all, taking the time now to evaluate the situation could prevent flood damage and the need for water restoration services. If you're wondering if it's time to change that part, here are three things to consider.


Signs of a Problem
Supply lines help water travel throughout the house and can, unfortunately, suffer from hard to detect issues. This could mean a bathroom leak, particularly in the toilet or sink. If you have seen or heard any of the following symptoms, you may need repairs:

Low water pressure
Numerous backups or clogs
Odd noises
Unusually high water bills
Damp drywall

Age Is Important
When contractors build houses they typically use one of two different types of piping: steel braid or plastic. The steel is stronger and lasts for a longer time, often having a lifetime warranty. Plastic, on the other hand, can break down more easily, having a warranty of 5-8 years. If your home is older, you recently had a construction or the home has aged, check with specialists to see if supply line damage has begun. Consider changing lines sooner rather than later, avoiding potential water leaks.


Additional Factors To Consider
A supply line leak can occur from other circumstances. Over time, wear and tear from chemical agents such as liquid cleaners can hurt the lines. Also, sometimes the local water quality can impact it as well. Do you live in an area with high levels of chlorine? This substance actually breaks down the pipes, possibly creating holes and sometimes leading to a burst.


Pay attention to changes in your plumbing. Subtle noises could indicate issues are developing. Don't leave supply line damage unattended. Call in professional help and have the area inspected. Fix the small problem to avoid a major one.

3 Things You Should Do if You Have Flooding in Your Basement

10/14/2019 (Permalink)

Bathroom area with flooded floors. It is important that you handle the situation properly to reduce the time needed for repairs as well as the cost.

When a broken pipe or appliance causes flooding in your basement, it is important to have it taken care of right away since the excess water can cause a lot of damage to your Knoxville, TN, home. If it remains there for an extended period of time, it can ruin your belongings and weaken the structure of the building. Wood will begin to warp and rot, and mold will grow and spread. The following steps should be taken in this situation.


1. Start Filing a Claim
Because water damage from flooding can be costly, you should begin filing your insurance claim immediately. Call your agent to inform them of the damage so that they can start the process. Waiting too long to call can result in your claim being denied and you may be stuck paying for repairs on your own. Contacting the company right away will prevent this and will allow you to complete the claim sooner.


2. Call a Restoration Service
The next call you should make is to a clean up and restoration service. It is important to have the water removed as soon as possible, so don’t put it off. A professional company will be able to perform pipe repair on the source of the water and start work on salvaging your home and belongings.


3. Document the Damage and Begin Cleaning Up
You don’t need to sit around doing nothing while you wait for the insurance adjuster or restoration company to arrive. Instead, you can begin making a list of damaged areas and belongings and taking pictures of the basement flood. The adjuster can use these to help process your claim. You should begin cleaning the area as well if it is safe to do so.


Because flooding in your home can cause a significant amount of damage, it is important that you handle the situation properly to reduce the time needed for repairs as well as the cost. Following these steps can make the situation go more smoothly.

Four Common Causes of House Fires

10/9/2019 (Permalink)

A space heater Space heaters cause numerous fires each year

Four Common Causes of House Fires

A fire in your Rocky Hill, TN, home is a frightening prospect. Fortunately, knowing some common causes of residential fires can help you stay vigilant and prevent a home fire. The following are frequent fire causes in the United States:

1. Cooking Because of the heat involved and how often people cook, kitchen fires are very common. Grease fires are particularly difficult to extinguish, so be vigilant when using oil or cooking something, such as bacon, that creates its own grease. Never try to put out a grease fire with water because this can cause the grease to combust. Additionally, toasters and other small kitchen appliances can cause fires if they are not properly cleaned and maintained. Don’t allow crumbs and grease to build up, and make sure power cords remain in good condition.

2. Faulty Wiring Electrical fires are particularly dangerous because they often begin in non-visible locations, such as behind walls. To minimize the risk of a home fire, make sure to have the wiring in your home inspected every 5-10 years. Your electrician can tell you how frequently your home needs an inspection. If you notice any discoloration on an electrical outlet, discontinue its use and call an electrician.

3. Heaters Space heaters, both gas and electric, cause numerous fires each year. It is important to follow the directions and never leave the appliance unattended. Also, keep a safe distance between the heater and anything that could catch fire, such as curtains.

4. Smoking Fires from cigarettes are especially deadly because they often begin when the homeowner is asleep. Never smoke in bed. If you can, smoke outdoors. Otherwise, make sure to use an ash tray.

Hopefully, with a little vigilance and knowledge of common fire causes, you can prevent a fire. However; if you ever do experience a home fire, you may need a professional restoration team to provide fire cleaning and get your house back to pre-fire condition.

How To Get Rid of Mold Odor

9/26/2019 (Permalink)

Mold on a drywall A strong, musty odor may indicate hidden mold behind drywall

How To Get Rid of Mold Odor

Mold is part of the fungus family and mold spores are in the air everywhere to some degree. Ideally, there should not be so many spores floating around your home in Farragut, TN, that you can detect them through the familiar musty odor many people have come in contact with at some point in their life. Mold gives off a metabolite called mycotoxin which is where this smell comes from, and it is not desirable! If you smell a musty odor in your home, which is often found in damp, warm areas, it is suggested that you do not stay in this area too long to avoid inhaling the mold spores as much as possible.

Common Mold Odor Areas

If you have a mold smell in your house, it’s important that you figure out where it’s coming from to eliminate the problem once and for all. It is possible to find that mycotoxin smell in a number of areas around the home such as:

  • A poorly sealed basement
  • Leaky attic
  • Damp garage
  • Bathrooms
  • Damp clothes

Really, anywhere there is plumbing throughout your home is also susceptible to mold growth if a pipe breaks. You can also check around the outside of the home for areas where water doesn’t drain very well, especially if you notice water leaking after it rains.

Clean Up the Odor and Mold

Once you determine what the mycotoxin source is, it’s time to clean up the moldy mess so it doesn’t cause future damage. First to improve air quality, you can use HEPA air filtration devices. These are certified to remove the majority of mold spores out of the air so you can safely breathe in the infested area.
Then it’s time to remove the odor once and for all. When cleaning up small amounts of mold, strong disinfectants like bleach are effective. When you’re dealing with widespread damage, however, a mold remediation company is often suggested to ensure the mess is fully removed and your home is safe and clean for many years to come.

How Proactive Plumbing Maintenance Can Save You Money

9/26/2019 (Permalink)

Plumbing system of a business Taking care of your plumbing system on a regular basis also helps everything run more smoothly

Plumbing Maintenance

Being proactive in avoiding plumbing problems is crucial to the well-being of your Rocky Hill, TN, business. When you give your plumbing system the attention it needs, you can avoid paying for costly repairs and replacements. Regular plumbing maintenance therefore helps you save money in a number of ways. Here are some of the main ways you can reduce your expenses by being proactive about plumbing maintenance.

Solves Problems Right Away

Any plumbing issues that arise can cause serious damage to your business. Even if they seem like minor concerns at first, they may cause bigger problems if you don’t address them right away. Some major problems that may lead to significant repairs include:

  • Burst pipes
  • Leaks
  • Flooding
  • Toilet overflow

The faster you detect these problems, the faster you can solve them. Taking care of plumbing problems as soon as possible helps you cut down on costs significantly.

Helps Plumbing Run Smoothly

Taking care of your plumbing system on a regular basis also helps everything run more smoothly. When you promptly address any leaks or blockages, you can help water travel from the water main to your pipes more quickly. This increased flow rate causes your appliances to work more efficiently, saving you money in the long run.

Prevents You From Losing Customers

If your business is riddled with constant plumbing issues, your customers may eventually begin to notice. If you have an overflowing toilet or a broken pipe, they might choose to visit another business that has a properly functioning plumbing system. Practicing regular plumbing maintenance can therefore help you avoid losing money as a result of your customers leaving.
No matter what type of plumbing problems you’re dealing with, they can lead to severe damage in your business if they aren’t properly taken care of. If you’re dealing with any form of loss as a result of plumbing issues, contact emergency restoration services as soon as possible.

5 Common Water Issues in Commercial Buildings

9/13/2019 (Permalink)

Water pipe that is leaking water. Water can cause costly cleanup issues for any property owner, the costs of liquid from leaking pipes can become extensive.

Just like residential buildings, commercial properties require water and sewer maintenance. Business owners and building supervisors know that what may begin as a small leak can quickly turn into a nightmare of running water if left unattended. But older buildings in Knoxville, TN, can have more problems than leaking pipes and a stopped toilet. Here are five of the most common water issues in commercial buildings.

Silent Mold

Where there is leaking water, there is often signs of mold. Since spores are in the air all the time, it is an accepted consequence of nature to have spores seek out water in a dark spot in a commercial building in order to grow a new colony.

Broken Foundation

Any building’s foundation can develop cracks as it ages, and this is especially true of the huge cement base supporting a commercial structure. Rainwater may seep into the cracks and plant roots can further weaken the structure.

Cracked Sewer

The cast iron drain lines used in most commercial buildings are designed to last up to 25 years. As they age, the pressure of sewer gasses and chemical cleaners can cause a toilet backup or a very costly pipe break.

Leaking Water

Water pipes can leak, and when they do, the damage the liquid may cause can be extensive. From wood rot to equipment damage to basement flooding, leaking pipes causing an excess of water in any commercial building is never a good thing.

Fractured Copper

Copper pipes can develop miniature cracks which may allow water to drip until the liquid forces the pipe to fracture. If caught before a break occurs, the lines can often be soldered instead of needing to be replaced.


Water can cause costly cleanup issues for any property owner, but in a large commercial building, the costs of liquid from leaking pipes can become extensive. Having a water damage specialist check the area for hidden signs of damage in a yearly maintenance routine can prevent possible flooding and mold issues.

What To Do if Your Building's Fire Sprinklers Accidentally Turn On

9/11/2019 (Permalink)

Commercial water sprinkler up close with flames behind it. Although sprinklers are often useful, they can cause flooding if they turn on accidentally.

During a fire, having fire sprinklers that function properly can often help to protect your business in Knoxville, TN, from fire damage. Unfortunately, there are some instances when your building's sprinklers may go off unnecessarily, which can result in flooding. If your sprinklers accidentally turn on, there are several useful steps you can take.

1. Turn Off the Water
Sprinklers are designed to dispense large amounts of water in a short period of time to put out a fire. However, when your sprinklers turn on when there is not a fire in your building, water damage can occur quickly. In general, less water in your building makes cleanup and restoration quicker and less costly, so it's often useful to turn off the water in your building as soon as possible.

2. Dry Out the Building
Once your sprinklers are turned off and water is no longer flooding your building, it's often wise to keep your building as dry as possible in order to mitigate the damage. If you were able to turn off the water soon after the sprinklers turned on, it may be possible to remove the majority of the water with a mop and towels. Opening windows can also help to increase the airflow and keep your building dry.

3. Seek Out Professional Help
Though turning off the water in your building and keeping your building dry can be helpful, it's often useful to contact water damage, restoration experts. Water from fire sprinklers can cause widespread damage, and professionals can assist in restoring the structure of your building and can also help to restore any items that have been damaged. Additionally, experts can help to prevent mold growth and other forms of secondary damage that often occur after a flood.

Although sprinklers are often useful, they can cause flooding if they turn on accidentally. However, responding appropriately by turning off the water, drying out the building and contacting professionals for assistance can decrease the likelihood of your business sustaining major damage.

How To Recognize and Prevent Mold Problems

9/11/2019 (Permalink)

Black mold growth on a wall. No one likes to see black mold on the walls of their commercial building, especially the people who work in the space.

When you own commercial property in Knoxville, TN, you are responsible for the upkeep of the building. Part of that responsibility is making sure you keep the building free of black mold growth. It's easier to take the necessary steps to prevent a problem if you understand it. Here are a few facts about mold and how to keep it from becoming an issue.


How Does a Mold Problem Happen?
There's no way to completely get rid of mold in your building. Mold spores are inevitably in the air. They travel in from the outside on the briefcases, coats, hair, and shoes of everyone who walks in the door. They don't become a problem, however, until the right conditions exist for them to settle and grow:

Moisture
Organic matter
Stagnant air

If your building is particularly humid or you have unresolved water damage, black mold spores are likely to settle and thrive. Mold growth not only gives off an unpleasant odor, but it also can destroy any item it infests.


How Do You Prevent Mold Growth?
To prevent mold growth, you must get rid of the things it needs to survive. Address any moisture problem in a timely manner. Maintain a 45-50% humidity level in your building. Keep the HVAC system running even when people aren't in the building to keep up the airflow. Clean up spills as soon as they occur, especially those that happen on the carpet. If you experience a water loss, have the problem fixed and any damage it causes mitigated as soon as possible. Finally, if a mold problem does arise, prevent a recurring issue by calling mold cleanup professionals quickly to make sure it is properly resolved.


No one likes to see black mold on the walls of their commercial building, especially the people who work in the space. By understanding the nature of mold and what it needs to grow, you are more likely to prevent it from happening.

How to Prepare for a Severe Storm

9/10/2019 (Permalink)

Emergency kit supplies: water bottle, matches, rope, flashlight, kit bag, Emergency kit supplies

Tips To Prepare For An Emergency

If you are expecting a severe storm in Bearden, TN, it is important to take measures to protect both your home and your family from flood water. Use the following tips to prepare for an emergency.

1. Move Important Items

If there is a lot of rain, you could end up with a flooded building. If this happens, any items located on the bottom floor or basement of your home could be affected. If you live in a house with multiple stories, you might want to move important items to an upper level. If you have a waterproof safe, use it to store smaller items and paper documents.

2. Inspect the House for Damage

The water damage that your house suffers during a storm might be worse if there is already existing damage. Check your home for any leaks or cracks in the walls and roof. Check that all of the doors and windows are sealing properly to keep out moisture. These problems can contribute to the growth of mold after a storm.

3. Make an Emergency Kit

Creating an emergency kit for use during a storm is a great idea and can be extremely helpful, particularly if there is a power outage. Always include flashlights and working batteries. You might also want to invest in a battery-operated radio to keep track of the news and weather. Make sure that you have plenty of bottled water and packaged food that does not require heating.

4. Relocate if Necessary

In some cases, the storm may be so severe that you need to find a safer location. If you are concerned about flood water in your home, or if there has been an evacuation notice, find somewhere else to stay as soon as possible. While you are doing so, make sure to drive only in safe locations and avoid anywhere that has been flooded.
Keep these tips in mind and do what you need to in order to stay safe during a storm. If flood water enters your home, a cleanup and restoration company can help return it to its previous condition.

How To Tell When Your Water Has Been Contaminated

8/27/2019 (Permalink)

Signs of contamination can be soap scum accumulating around your tub

How To Tell When Your Water Has Been Contaminated

If someone told you that your home in Knoxville, TN, had contaminated water, it’s likely that you would do something to remedy the situation. Since clean water is vital to everyday functions such as cooking, cleaning, bathing and drinking, a water supply that is compromised can make things challenging for any resident. However, because there are different levels of contamination, some people may not recognize an issue right away, especially if it is on the more subtle end of the spectrum.

Some signs of contamination include the following:

  • Soap scum, rust or mineral buildup accumulating around water sources, such as sinks and tubs
  • Laundry is stiff, even after a proper washing
  • Water has an odd flavor that is metallic, salty, moldy, chemical-like, etc.
  • Water emits an unusual odor

Sources of Contamination

By understanding the most common sources of contaminated water, you can better evaluate the likelihood of it occurring in your own home. Residences situated near landfills, fracking sites, commercial laundromats, manufacturing businesses, farms or other places that have significant amounts of chemical or bacterial run-off that can affect groundwater or water sources should be extra diligent. It can also be helpful to regularly check the water report in your area to monitor any major changes.

Taking Action

Since having contaminated water in Knoxville, TN, may not necessarily be as obvious as a black water problem, it can be helpful to run an initial home test or have a professional check your supply line for extra peace of mind since it can come from a variety of sources. If you suspect you have an issue with your water supply, depending on its severity, you will likely need to find a new source for drinking water, have it undergo further home treatments before consumption or use, and assume it is not potable until it is properly evaluated, repaired and tested by a professional.

Putting Together a First Aid Kit for Your Commercial Property

8/20/2019 (Permalink)

Items in a first aid kit

What Should Go Inside a First Aid Kit?

It is imperative that any place of business or commercial property in Deane Hill, TN, include one or more first aid kit. This means that you will be ready in the event of an injury or emergency. You can find pre-made kits, but it can be more cost effective and thorough to put them together yourself. What should go inside?

Bandages

One of the most important category of items is bandages. You should include many different sizes and types. You can never have too many, but some basic additions you can make are:

  • gauze pads of multiple sizes, including 4x4 and 8x10
  • gauze roller bandages, at least 2" wide
  • triangular bandages
  • adhesive bandages of multiple sizes, like
  • band-aids
  • adhesive tape

Wound Preparation

Before the bandages go on, the injury should be tended to. This means your first aid kit should include tools for cleaning and stabilizing. Typical cleaning agents like moistened towelettes or hydrogen peroxide are essential. Tweezers and scissors can help remove debris or clothing from the area. Gloves will help keep both you and the injured person hygienic- consider including latex and non-latex, for those with allergies. Splints and elastic wraps are essential for sprains and breaks.

Emergency Equipment

If possible, within the same bag or box, you should also include an emergency kit. A blanket can be helpful in cases of shock, or if the injured person needs to be warmed up. Resuscitation bags and pocket masks make CPR more sanitary. Water bottles or a water jug can also come in very handy, for both drinking and rinsing off wounds. You can also throw in directions for requesting emergency assistance or guides for what to do in various emergency situations, or contact information for a disaster remediation service.
It is not only necessary to have a first aid kit in your place of business, but you should also keep it up to date. Certain items can expire, so be sure to check on it every 6 months or so. Don't overlook this important aspect of owning commercial property!

Recovering From Water Damage After a Commercial Fire

8/13/2019 (Permalink)

Fire damage in Northshore Town Center, TN

When fire strikes your commercial building, the results can be devastating for any number of reasons. Flames, extreme heat, and smoke damage can cause extensive damage to a building and its contents, but the efforts from extinguishing the fire can be equally detrimental. Firefighters will indiscriminately spray the area with thousands of gallons of water, and fire sprinklers will saturate entire rooms to put the fire out. Working with professional water cleanup experts in Northshore Town Center, TN, can help get your building up and running more quickly after a fire.

Water Restoration Process

While fire cleanup and smoke cleanup are imperative parts of the fire recovery process, water cleanup offers unique challenges due to the possibility of mold growth. Ensuring proper cleanup from water damage involves a number of steps, including:

  • Inspection: determines the extent of the damage and helps lay out a unique cleanup process
  • Water extraction: removes all surface flooding plus saturation of furniture and other items
    Drying: ensures the space and all items are thoroughly dehumidified to reduce the risk of mold growth and warping
  • Cleaning: sanitizes all affected areas for safe, odor-free occupancy and usage
  • Restoration: repairs any weakened areas in walls, flooring, or other areas

Water Removal Equipment and Methods

The water cleanup process is a highly technical procedure that is imperative to the restoration of the building and its contents. Industrial-strength wet vacuums are almost always needed, and in extreme cases submersible pumps will be used. Moisture detectors and hygrometers will help determine if additional water is hidden out of sight. Industrial air circulators and dehumidifiers will then be used to remove excess moisture hidden in walls and other porous surfaces. Finally, industrial air scrubbers, antimicrobial treatments, and disinfectants will clean the air and affected areas by removing mold spores, odors, and other potential germs.
Commercial fires can be a major financial burden well after the incident. Ensuring proper cleanup can get your business up and running again quickly and safely.

Teach Your Children To Safely Escape a Home Fire

7/17/2019 (Permalink)

Hold regular drills so your entire family knows how to respond to the sight of flames

Teach Your Children To Safely Escape a Home Fire

Any Ebenezer, TN, home is susceptible to fire damage, so it's vital that all children are taught how to escape a fire. As a cautious parent or guardian, it's up to you to create a plan and protect your kids safety. Your plan should consist of these elements:

  • Recognizing the sound of fire/smoke alarms
  • Familiarity with exit routes and alternatives
  • Where to meet outside the home

Hold regular drills so your entire family knows how to respond to the sight of flames or the sound of the alarm at any time of day or night.

Install Voice Alarms

Did you know that many children won't wake up when smoke and fire alarms go off during the night? In recent years, studies found that at least 80 percent of children don't wake up even if the home fire alarm is sounding right in their bedroom. Today, smoke detectors are equipped with voice alarms which are much more effective at rousing children from their sleep. Consider replacing bedroom alarms with these new devices for your kids safety.

Consider Several Scenarios

Draw up a fire escape plan that gets the family out within just a minute or two. Ideally, children should sleep with their doors closed. As part of your exit plan, make sure children know how to respond if their doorknob is hot. Provide alternative escape plans in the event the original route is blocked. During your drills, practice methods of getting out of bed safely; teach children to roll out of bed to avoid smoke inhalation.

Stay Out of the House

In the emotional moments after escaping a home fire, adults and children may suddenly realize that a treasured belonging is in danger of fire damage. It is crucial, however, that family members do not go back into the home. When you are all gathered safely at your meeting point, support each other in remaining safely out of the home.
Once the flames have settled and fire cleanup efforts are underway, your kids safety is still your top concern. Fire damage cleanup professionals will focus on returning your home to its condition before fire damage occurred.

What To Know About Making a Flood Damage Claim

7/9/2019 (Permalink)

Contact a professional water damage restoration service to conduct the cleanup process for you

Tips that Will Help You Make a Flood Claim

If your Blue Grass, TN, home has experienced flooding, one of the first things you may choose to do is contact your insurance. Here are a few things you may want to remember when it comes to making a flood claim. These tips may help you work with your agent to get everything processed as smoothly as possible.

1. Remember to Document Everything

One important thing to remember when making an insurance claim is to document everything. This may mean making a list of damaged items, expected repairs, and what you think will need to be replaced. It's also recommended that you take photographs where possible, as this will allow your insurance adjuster have a visual reference of the areas and items you are discussing.

2. You Can Start Cleanup Before the Insurance Adjuster Arrives

It's also important to note that when filing a flood claim you are allowed to begin the cleanup process before your insurance adjuster arrives. Doing so can help prevent further damage from occurring such as the settling in of mold spores, or damage resulting from leaving part of your home to soaked in flood water. Document how things looked before you started so that your insurance adjuster can see the progress.

3. Use a Professional Restoration Service

In many cases you may want to contact a professional water damage restoration service to conduct the cleanup process for you. These professionals already have experience with a variety of type if water damaged related issues, and may even be able to work with your insurance company on your behalf.
When making a flood claim it's important to remember to document everything. This may include a list of damaged items as well as photographic evidence. You can also start the cleanup process before your agent arrives as doing so can help prevent further damage. You may also choose to consider contacting a professional restoration service.

Interruption Insurance Coverage and What It Can Do for You

6/26/2019 (Permalink)

Interruption insurance coverage is a valuable resource for the business owner

You’ve worked hard to establish your company in Hardin Valley, TN, and as a result, business is going well. Have you considered, however, what you would do in the unfortunate event that a fire or a natural disaster ravaged your facility, temporarily putting you out of business? Interruption insurance coverage on your business policy, also known as business income coverage, is valuable and will make it easier for you to resume business by compensating you for loss of income or profits during the business interruption.

What Is This Insurance?

Business income coverage provides compensation for the following:

  • Profits that could have been earned had this loss not occurred
  • Normal operating expenses while the business is closed, including employees’ wages
  • The cost of relocation to a temporary site in order to conduct business

This type of insurance applies when a fire or other property damage covered under the insurance policy causes a business to reduce or completely stop operations. While property insurance may cover the actual damage to the building, it does not cover the loss of income or profits resulting from the diminished business operations. During the time the property damage is being repaired or replaced, interruption insurance is in effect. 

What About Additional Expenses?

An additional coverage, known as extra expense coverage, may be included with the business income coverage. It applies to additional expenses unrelated to the actual damage, such as the higher cost of rent at a temporary site used to conduct business. 

What Should I Do After I Call My Insurance Company?

Hopefully, a fire will never erupt at your office or facility, making it necessary for you to ever have to use your business income coverage. In the event that it does, however, a company specializing in fire restoration is Here to Help and can make your working area look “Like it never even happened.”

Interruption insurance coverage is a valuable resource for the business owner. Along with extra expense coverage, this insurance provides peace of mind and enables a company to proceed with business more effectively during a time of transition.

The Water Damage Cycle: Category 2

6/25/2019 (Permalink)

If clean water moves through walls or floors, for example, it becomes contaminated and can cause Category 2 water damage.

Dealing with water damage in Knoxville, TN, can be confusing, but it doesn’t need to be. Water damage comes in three categories, each more contaminated than the last. While flooding from a broken pipe will usually cause annoying but harmless Category 1 water damage, immediate water pipe repair and water damage repair are your best defenses against more serious problems that may arise. Even a broken freshwater pipe can lead to Category 2 water damage, which is a significantly more serious hazard than Category 1.

Where Does Category 2 Water Damage Come From?

Category 2 water can come from a variety of sources:

• Leaking washing machines
• Leaking dishwashers
• Leaking toilet tanks
• Broken aquariums or aquarium accessories

Additionally, damage done by clean water can become Category 2 water damage if not cleaned up promptly. If clean water moves through walls or floors, for example, it becomes contaminated and can cause Category 2 water damage. Water from leaking appliances such as those listed above, on the other hand, doesn’t need to age to become contaminated; it is already contaminated.

Why Does It Matter?

While not as toxic as Category 3 water, Category 2 water is still a very serious concern, and its cleanup is best left to professionals:

• Category 2 water can cause serious illness.
• Clean water can turn into Category 2 water quickly.
• Category 2 water damage can turn into Category 3 water damage, which poses even greater health risks.

Category 2 water damage is a problem that requires immediate care. It involves water that is contaminated and poses a health risk. Getting quick water damage repair to ensure that Category 2 water damage does not escalate to Category 3 is important for a safe and healthy restoration. Proper water pipe repair and/or repair of any leaking items in the building will ensure fewer health risks and more peace of mind.

Some Facts About Mold

6/20/2019 (Permalink)

Mold spores with white and black spores Call SERVPRO of West Knoxville/Farragut for your mold removal and mold remediation needs.

If you own property in Knoxville, TN, one of the many things you need to look out for is mold. Unchecked mold growth can lead to thousands of dollars' worth of damage to your building and unhealthy conditions for workers or tenants. Below, we'll look at what mold is, how to prevent it, and if detected, how to get rid of it.

What Mold Is, and Where It Comes From

Mold is a fungus that is found everywhere, propagating through spores that are blown around through the air. Mold growth only becomes a problem in buildings with areas of high humidity, or where there's been water damage. Mold enters a structure in a number of ways, including:

• Doorways
• Vents
HVAC Systems
• Windows
• Attached to:
o Pets
o Clothes
o Shoes and Boots
o Bags

There are thousands of types of mold. Common ones include Aspergillus, found in food and AC systems, Alternaria, commonly found in sinks and showers, and Stachybotrys chartarum, otherwise known as black mold.

How to Prevent It

To prevent mold from becoming a problem in your building, eliminate any sources of excess moisture. Try to bring down humidity with a dehumidifier or air conditioner. A building with good ventilation also is much less likely to have a mold problem. Vents should always lead to the outside. Also, make sure that your roofing and plumbing are inspected regularly. Hidden leaks in walls or ceilings can cause big problems with mold.

Professional Help
If you detect mold in your building, a mold remediation company should be consulted. They can identify the types of mold present and take the appropriate steps to eradicate the problem safely and completely. They can remove the sources of moisture, then dehumidify, clean and disinfect using specialized techniques and equipment.

Hopefully, your building hasn't been affected by mold growth, and by using the information outlined above, you can keep it mold-free. But if you do detect mold, a quick call to a professional can get the problem under control and have your property back to normal in no time.

Call SERVPRO of West Knoxville/Farragut for your mold removal and mold remediation needs in Knoxville, TN today!

How To Guard Against Flooding During Construction

6/18/2019 (Permalink)

When constructing a new building in Hardin Valley, TN, it is important to watch out for flooding

When constructing a new building in Hardin Valley, TN, it is important to watch out for flooding, as it can lead to time-consuming and costly delays. The use of quality materials and quick water pipe repair can help you ensure the safety of your workers, the building and the overall project.

Quality Control

Every step of the construction process needs to be monitored for high quality materials and practices. This can help you foresee potential flooding issues and help you prevent problems caused by a broken pipe. Quality control can be accomplished in a number of ways:

  1. Devise a formal plan. Consult engineers and other experts to make sure your building materials and water system will work together well, and have an emergency plan just in case a leak occurs.
  2. Set up a drainage system. The time for planning how water is to be directed is before you need it, not after.
  3. Hire a quality manager. There needs to be someone whose main job is to make sure everyone, including subcontractors, are sticking to the quality control plan throughout the whole project.

Quick Repairs

During construction, a building is in its most vulnerable state. Be in a position to make necessary water pipe repair quickly. Have a trusted plumber and water mitigation experts on speed dial.

Frequent Tests

Test your building's susceptibility to water damage at every phase of construction to avoid a flooded building in the future. When pipes are going in, make sure your pumps are functioning properly and directing excess water where it needs to go. Make sure that pipes along exterior walls have extra insulation to prevent them from freezing in winter, and test to ensure they are equipped to withstand it before you close the wall completely. Once the roof is on, test to see if it's waterproof and make necessary repairs.

How well your building withstands water damage after it's built is a direct result of how much effort you put into making sure the necessary water pipe repair and adjustments are made during construction. Monitor and test for weaknesses throughout the process.

Types of Fire Extinguishers and Their Uses

6/14/2019 (Permalink)

For the safety of your home and family, it’s crucial to have the correct fire extinguisher on hand for the most common fire hazards.

Many people are unaware that there are different kinds of fire extinguishers for home use in Knoxville, TN. Different kinds are designed to fight certain types and sizes of fire. For the safety of your home and family, it’s imperative to have the correct fire extinguisher on hand for the most common fire hazards.

Classes

A home extinguisher will be labeled by class based on the type of fire it is meant to fight.

• Class A varieties are designed for solid objects such as wood, fabric, and paper.
• Class B extinguishers are for fighting flammable liquid fires from sources like gasoline, grease, and oil.
• Class C versions are designed for electrical fires.

Most popular kinds found in home improvement stores will be combination types, labeled to indicate the use. For example, an ABC extinguisher will work on solid material, liquid, and electrical fires.

Sizes

In addition to the class, the size of fire extinguisher is an important factor. As a general rule, the larger the better. The weight listed on the label indicates the amount of fire retardant in the canister. Add a few more pounds to account for the canister’s weight. Consider an extinguisher that is not too heavy to be easily lifted and maneuvered.

Coverage

There are often numbers found before the letters on the label. The number signifies extinguishing power. Each number found before an A is equivalent to 1 ¼ gallons of water. For example, an extinguisher classified as 3-A is equipped with the equivalent of 3 ¾ gallons of water.

A number found before B and C equates to coverage in square feet. A 40-B:C classification, for example, indicates the ability to put out a fire of up to 40 square feet.

Fire preparedness is essential in minimizing home fire damage should a blaze start. With so many options available when purchasing an extinguisher, it is helpful to know how to interpret the information found on the label. Having an understanding of classes, sizes and fire-fighting power will help you choose the appropriate fire extinguisher to protect your home, family, and property.

Key Points About Mold Insurance Coverage Every Business Owner Should Know

6/14/2019 (Permalink)

Hand holding pen with the words "Are you covered?" Some policies may provide limited protection against mold, you should carefully review the details of your current mold insurance coverage.

Because of the prevalence of mold spores in the environment, it may be impossible to deem any commercial building in Knoxville, TN, mold-free. To complicate matters, mold thrives in moist environments and can grow behind walls and under flooring. While commercial insurance may protect your property from a variety of perils, you may be surprised to learn that some policies may provide limited protection against mold. For this reason, you should carefully review the details of your current mold insurance coverage.

Common Exclusions

Some insurance policies list numerous exclusions that may cause the company to deny a mold damage claim. Common exclusions include the following:

• Moisture intrusion resulting from a construction defect
• Damage caused by a long-term leak
• Problems arising from deferred maintenance
• Leaks resulting from normal wear and tear

As a result, it’s important for you to promptly address any visible leaks and maintain HVAC equipment and plumbing systems according to manufacturer recommendations.

Annual Policy Limits

Commercial insurance companies can also write policies that include low annual policy limits. In the event of serious mold contamination, an insurance payout as low as $5,000 may not adequately finance mold remediation efforts, forcing you to pay additional expenses out-of-pocket.

Specified Perils

Another potential policy detail that may null a mold-related claim is the requirement that you prove that a qualifying peril caused the mold contamination. Meeting this condition may be particularly difficult if your maintenance records and other vital documentation are not complete and well-organized.

Flood Damage

Mold contamination resulting from flood damage is another possible coverage limitation. Many policies may not cover mold damage resulting from a flood unless you have supplemental flood coverage.

Understanding Your Policy Is Vital
The specific language of commercial insurance policies varies. To ensure you are adequately protected against mold contamination, it’s essential that you review your coverage and identify any exclusions that may cost you significant out-of-pocket expenses if a mold problem arises.

How To Save Flooded Carpeting

6/11/2019 (Permalink)

Water damage in a bedroom in Rocky Hill, TN

Is it Possible to Save Your Carpet After You've Had Water Damage?

The answer is important to homeowners who have experienced a pipe break or flooding. If your Rocky Hill, TN, home has been affected by any type of flooding, you need to decide whether to replace the flooring or get it cleaned. Use the following questions to determine your next course of action:

  • How long was the room exposed to flood water?
  • Was the flood water contaminated?
  • Does everything, including the padding, need to be replaced?

After reviewing these questions and the following answers, contact a water damage restoration specialist to help you with the cleanup and repairs associated with flooding.

Length of Time Exposed to Water

Anything that has been exposed to floodwater for more than 72 hours should be replaced; this includes the padding below the flooring. After soaking that long, the materials may become delaminated or begin to exhibit mold growth. At this point, even if restoration experts save your carpet, you should replace the padding. It is very difficult to get the heavy material thoroughly clean and dried.

The Effect of Contaminants

The water from a pipe break may be fairly clean, but flooding from outside often carries a lot of contaminants. These could include dirt, debris, sewage, and chemicals. The best way to determine how clean the water was is to contact a water damage professional. These technicians can tell you whether to clean or replace your flooring.

The Possibility of Saving Flooring

It is often possible to save some of the flooring materials. Workers will carefully roll up the top layer of the flooring and remove it for cleaning and disinfecting, if necessary. Once the padding has been removed and thrown out and when the bottom layer of flooring is completely dry, it's time for new padding. Finally, your original flooring is ready to be replaced.
A pipe break, overflowing toilet, or flooded basement requires a lot of cleanup. Make things simpler and easier on yourself by working closely with trained water remediation professionals.

5 Places Mold May Be Lurking Inside Your Home

5/29/2019 (Permalink)

Mold growth inside wall. The fungus can proliferate behind walls.

Damp environments often create ideal locations for mold and mildew growth. Although both can be unsightly, mold tends to be more invasive. To alleviate the risk of mold damage, every homeowner in Farragut, TN should control moisture levels inside their residence and promptly address any existing leaks. Understanding common areas where the fungus may proliferate can also help everyone safeguard the integrity of their homes.

1. Under Appliances and Sinks

Supply lines allow easy access to water throughout your home, including the bathroom and kitchen. Appliances such as washing machines and dishwashers also utilize the liquid. Over time, connections can loosen and components can deteriorate, resulting in leaks. Because of this, you should routinely inspect under sinks and around appliances for dripping or pooled water and promptly commence any necessary repairs.

2. Inside Your Refrigerator

Because it’s often damp, your refrigerator may be susceptible to mold growth. Routinely cleaning this appliance and removing old or spoiled food can prevent this problem.

3. Beneath Carpets

Carpets are another area of your home potentially vulnerable to mold damage. If any of your home’s carpeting becomes saturated, removing it may be the only way to prevent extensive contamination.

4. Behind Walls

The fungus can proliferate behind walls. In the event of water damage from a flood or burst pipe, remove any soaked drywall and insulation. You should also promptly investigate damp, bubbled or stained walls and ceilings for hidden leaks and mold growth.

5. In Your Bathroom

Your bathroom may be one of the dampest areas of your home. Regularly cleaning the space and drying the area around sinks is important. You should also wipe down your shower after every use and utilize the bathroom fan while bathing to reduce condensation buildup.

Sustaining mold damage can be a nightmare for any homeowner. Taking proactive measures can reduce the risk of substantial growth and minimize the need for professional mold remediation services

How To Banish Mold

5/23/2019 (Permalink)

Mold is a persistent fungus that can form and spread with surprising speed. Mold growth can occur when a surface is exposed to moisture, such as with water damage. Mold will cause your Knoxville, TN, business to look unkempt and unwelcoming. Here are some helpful tips for dealing with mold, wherever you are in the remediation process.

1. Keep Things Dry and Well-Monitored - Mold forms in conditions when water or humidity is present.

2. Keeping a space well-ventilated with fans and open windows is key to preventing fungal growth. Mold is also attracted to dirt, so good housekeeping goes a long way.

3. Consistent monitoring is another important factor. Regularly inspect the property for any precursors to water damage and unwanted moisture, such as leaky pipes, plumbing issues, and improper drainage.

4. Work Quickly in the Mold Window. In the event of a flood or burst pipe, mold can start to grow within 24-48 hours. This window is a crucial time for mold prevention. Once it forms, it starts feeding off of organic matter and shooting off spores that cause rapid mold growth. You’ll want to remove the foothold that mold depends on, starting with extracting any water completely and quickly. A dehumidifier should be used, as open windows won’t cut it when there’s already excess moisture.

Immediately toss out any carpet or insulation that has been soaked. Even if the building appears to be dry, it helps to enlist professionals who can locate inconspicuous areas of standing water.

Enlist the Pros for Cleanup. If mold is already present on a surface, it needs to be removed in order to prevent it from spreading. This is a task best left to professionals, as mold is tricky to get rid of. A professional mold remediation service can locate every affected area, and the pros can quickly and safely eradicate mold from your property.

Mold is a stubborn substance that is living and very active. You don’t want it anywhere near your place of business, and neither do your customers. By taking the necessary precautions in the wake of water damage, you’ll keep your property in tip-top shape.

5 Ways to Protect a Building from Flooding

5/17/2019 (Permalink)

Flood damage in Knoxville, TN

5 Ways to Protect a Building from Flooding

A business located in Knoxville, TN, may experience frequent storms, meaning it's at risk for flood damage. Fortunately, business owners can help protect their company property by considering the following steps.

1. Regular Maintenance

Performing regular maintenance on your company property can help prevent long-term damage. This allows you to know what problems there are before a storm comes, and what preventive measures you may need to take.

2. Fix Problems When Found

Another important step for damage prevention is to fix any issues you find as soon as you can. For water damage restoration, or if you think you may need a restoration professional after a storm, you may want to keep their number on hand.

3. Know the Weather

Staying informed of the weather in your area can also help you prevent flood damage at your place of business. If you know a storm is coming ahead of time you can take damage prevention steps.

4. Use Landscaping

It's also possible to use the landscaping around your building to help prevent flooding. Slope the yard and driveway away from the foundation. Using local plants with deep roots can absorb moisture. It’s also important to keep gutters and other drainage clear of debris to prevent overflow.

5. Create Weather Barriers

Another way to help prevent storm damage is the use of creating barriers against inclement weather. This may mean building a sandbag wall to prevent flooding, closing storm shutters, or even placing tarps or boards over areas prone to damage.

If you're seeking to protect your business from flood damage there are a few things you may want to consider. Perform regular maintenance on the property and fix any issues as you find them to prevent additional damage. Know what weather to expect in your area and plan your landscaping accordingly. In the event of a large storm you can even implement barriers against the weather.

What To Do When Grease Ignites

5/17/2019 (Permalink)

Cut off the heat source as soon as grease starts to smoke

Hot grease, such as cooking oil or fat, is quick to ignite. Fat and oil tend to smoke before a fire starts. You should take the following measures to extinguish a grease fire.

Stop Heating the Oil

Cut off the heat source as soon as grease starts to smoke. There are several guidelines depending on the type of fat or oil:

  • Animal fats smoke around 375 degrees Fahrenheit
  • Vegetable oils smoke around 450 degrees Fahrenheit
  • Do not add water to any hot grease

It may be possible to avoid a fire by turning off the heat and covering smoking grease. Adding water to grease can cause a splash that spreads fire.

Cut Off Oxygen

Limiting the availability of oxygen is the best way to extinguish a grease fire. Completely cover a burning pan or pot with any of the following items:

  • Baking sheet
  • Metal lid
  • Another metal pan or pot

Leave the cover undisturbed for up to 20 minutes. Simple kitchen ingredients can also be used to douse grease fires.

Douse the Flames

You can dump baking soda and salt on a fire before covering the flames. Baking soda releases carbon dioxide and salt absorbs heat. A large amount of these ingredients may be necessary. A Class B or K extinguisher is also useful for grease fires. Avoid spraying an extinguisher directly at flaming grease, as pressurized suppressant may spatter grease and spread a fire.

Seal Off the Fire and Evacuate

If the fire spreads and cannot be suppressed, close the door to the kitchen to limit air flow. Evacuate the premises and call the fire department.

These are the most effective methods for putting out a grease fire. When you are dealing with damage resulting from any type of fire at your home in Bearden, TN, you should contact a fire cleanup company that specializes in mitigation and restoration.

Bleaching Mold Is Not the Solution

5/16/2019 (Permalink)

You may have heard that a solution of bleach and water can be used to remove mold, but this is not actually the solution to the problem. There are quite a few complications with this common belief, so make sure you take a moment to learn a little about mold cleaning so that it will be done properly in your building in Knoxville, TN.

What’s Wrong With Bleaching Mold?

The appearance of a clean surface perpetuates a false belief that bleach can be used for fungus cleanup. This method actually does remove some stains or temporarily removes mold from a surface, but this is not permanent. Here are some of the problems with this method of cleaning:

• Porous materials provide hidden territory for mold to root deeply where a solution may not penetrate.
• Mold spores are everywhere, so the mold will return unless the source of moisture is stopped.
• Attempting the cleanup of mold with a solution of bleach and water can exacerbate existing moisture issues.
• Bleaching just masks the problem with the appearance of a clean surface, while mold hides deep within.

These efforts can lead to bigger problems. The appearance of fungus cleanup hides the fact that your mold colonies are still thriving and multiplying deep beneath the surface of your walls, floors, carpets or other building materials. Mold damage can only happen where there is a food source (including building materials, dirt, and dust) and a water source.

The Real Solution

The water source can be unnoticeable because it is usually not a puddle or other obvious problem. Excessive indoor moisture can be caused by something as simple as high humidity or condensation near pipes or in the air conditioner. When small water problems go unnoticed, they turn into big problems fast. Mold reproduces in as little as 48 hours. The key to ending your mold problem is finding the source of moisture and stopping it. A professional mold remediator is trained to do this before taking steps for proper fungus cleanup, which may include the drying or removing of damaged materials.

Call SERVPRO of West Knoxville/Farragut for your mold damage remediation and restoration needs.

Stay Safe After a Flood

4/26/2019 (Permalink)

If you have a flooded home after a storm, the most important thing that you can do for yourself and your loved ones is stay safe.

If you have a flooded home after a storm, the most important thing that you can do for yourself and your loved ones is stay safe. Here are some tips on what not to do, and how to avoid danger after flood water takes over your Farragut, TN home.

1. Never approach standing water in your home. Underground power lines and other power issues could cause this water to be electrically charged. Avoid it and do not stand in it under any circumstances.

2. Don’t forget your cell phone charger. If you can find somewhere that is safe and secure to charge your phone, keep it powered up and charged for as long as you can. If you cannot find or plug in a charger, use the device as little as possible to preserve battery life. Remember to never plug your phone in near water.

3. Do not skimp on your protective gear. Always wear knee-high boots made of rubber and sturdy gloves to protect yourself from electrical currents and contaminated flood water - the more coverage you can find for your body, the better.

4. Never take cleanup matters into your own hands. A flooding home and related damage can be a lot to deal with as a homeowner, but you should never attempt cleaning or renovation projects on your own. Wait until the chaos dies down, then contact a local water damage restoration service for professional help with mold growth, structural damage and other flood-related issues.

Powerful storms that flood your home can be very distressing, especially when your property and safety are at stake. Be as careful as you can be and waiting for professional help whenever possible are your best bets for staying safe and protecting your home. Flood water is not a joke, so finding the best help you can for post-storm cleanup should be your first priority after all the commotion has died down.

How To Safely and Effectively Dry Out Your Commercial Property

4/19/2019 (Permalink)

Any number of things can cause water damage to your property, whether it’s a serious pipe burst or a backed-up sewer line.

Any number of things can cause water damage to your Farragut, TN property, whether it’s a serious pipe burst or a backed-up sewer line. Regardless of the culprit, it’s important to pick up handy advice on how to deal with such occasions so you can properly restore your commercial building. When you’re looking for water damage tips or cleaning tips that can be put to use until help arrives, remember these three helpful hints on how to safely and effectively dry out your property.

1. Be wary of any standing water if your building has flooded. Before taking any action on drying out your space, it’s vital that you shut off the main water supply to prevent further damage, as well as the power supply to avoid electrical shocks. Meanwhile, if there’s substantial water buildup, it’s important to wear protective clothing and avoid direct contact with possibly contaminated water. As far as damage tips go, this is a crucial step to take before moving forward, and contacting water damage repair experts for further help and guidance is the next best option.

2. Stick with natural ventilation, as opposed to your HVAC system. While utilizing your building’s heating or air conditioning might seem like one of the easier cleaning tips, choosing these methods for drying can actually cause more damage to your property’s structure. Stick to opening all of the windows and allow natural air ventilation to do its job.

3. Start removing soaked furniture, clothing or other items if it’s safe to do so. While it’s best to wait for the clear go-ahead from professionals, beginning the process of removing saturated belongings is also important to drying out your property at a faster pace.

Safety First, Restoration Second

Though you presumably want to get your Farragut, TN building up and running again as quickly as possible, it’s crucial for everyone’s safety to follow these water damage tips in order to prevent any more hazards.

What Causes Mold Regrowth?

4/14/2019 (Permalink)

Moisture, high levels of humidity and the structure of mold spores can all affect mold growth.

Mold growth is a major problem in many businesses in Farragut, TN and many business owners are frustrated to see mold growing back in certain areas after it has seemingly been removed. However, there are various reasons mold tends to grow back in businesses.

1. Moisture

One of the primary reasons mold regrows in particular areas has to do with the amount of moisture. If a particular area has been affected by water damage, quickly removing the water often isn’t enough. It’s often helpful to ensure that areas stay dry long after the initial water has been removed, as moisture left behind can make it significantly easier for mold to return.

2. Airflow

The airflow in a business can affect whether or not mold regrows. With too little airflow in a building, levels of high humidity can occur and accelerate the rate of mold growth. However, too much airflow can also increase the rate at which spores spread. In order to know what level of airflow would benefit your business and make it more difficult for mold to regrow, it’s often helpful to speak with mold remediation experts.

3. Structure of the Spores

In addition to high levels of moisture and humidity and significant airflow, the structure of the mold spores also affects mold’s ability to regrow in a particular area. Hyphae are thin, strand-like structures that are present in fungi. The hyphae are solid enough to shield the spores of mold from dissipating and the hyphae’s thin strands also help to promote the spread of the mold spores. Removing every individual mold spore is neither possible or beneficial, but the combination of a humid environment with too much or too little airflow and the spores’ structure makes it easy for regrowth to occur.

Moisture, high levels of humidity and the structure of mold spores can all affect mold growth. By understanding the factors that make mold more likely to grow, you can take measurements to prevent both growth and regrowth in your business.

Crawl Space Clean Up

4/7/2019 (Permalink)

Crawl Space Clean up Knoxville

SERVPRO of West Knoxville/Farragut is excited to add Crawl Space Cleanup and Encapsulation to our company. Our crews can clean up, seal, and insulate your space quickly. We specialize in specialize e in mold and rotten crawl space clean up and repair.

While many homeowners do not access their crawl space regularly or use it for storage, what happens in this space can have a significant impact on the rest of the home.

If you have a vented crawl space, you can count on 40% of the air in your home coming from your crawl space. Anything in that air — including mold spores, odors, and humidity — are all brought up into your home. These particles may be invisible, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t harmful.

For a free crawl space quote, contact us by phone or e-mail today!

3 Things You Should Know About Water Damage in Your Apartment

4/4/2019 (Permalink)

Taking quick action to dry and restore your apartment will yield the best end results.

3 Things You Should Know About Water Damage In Your Apartment

As a renter in Knoxville, TN there is a fine line between what you can tolerate and what is unacceptable. While most renters have come to expect a few squeaks in the floors and quirks in the appliances, living with leaking appliances can be a huge hassle. From a pipe burst to a leaking dishwasher, you should know these three things about dealing with water damage in your apartment.

1. The Leak Won’t Fix Itself

When faced with a large water mess, it might seem easiest to simply turn your head and pretend you don’t see water pouring out from under your dishwasher. The best advice: face the problem head on. As soon as you notice water, start by:

  • Turning off the appliance
  • Canceling the cycle
  • Or, simply shutting off the main water line

These simple measures are quick and easy and may be the best way to prevent further water from entering the equation. Talk to your landlord as soon as possible about addressing the problems at hand.

2. Hasty Cleanup is Essential

Whether the property owner is ready to take immediate action or not, it may be in your best interest to get started on the process of cleaning up. Finding a local water restoration crew to help you with large water incidents, such as a pipe burst, can be helpful in documenting and safely treating the affected area.

3. Check Your Renters Insurance Policy

If any of your personal belongings sustain damage in an apartment water leak, contact your insurance company to learn more about your coverage. Many renter’s insurance policies approve claims in which water damage permanently ruins personal goods left in the wake of a residential water leak. However, if flooding continues into neighboring units wreaking havoc, renter’s insurance may not have you protected.

If you are faced with significant water damage from a pipe burst, begin the restoration and clean up process sooner than later. Taking quick action to dry and restore your apartment will yield the best end results.

3 Ways a Storm Damage Cleanup Service Can Assist With Business Insurance Claims

4/4/2019 (Permalink)

Disaster response teams from restoration services like SERVPRO are trained to move quickly in the event of a major natural disaster.

3 Ways A Storm Damage Cleanup Service Can Assist With Business Insurance Claims 

When a fire or storm damage affects your Knoxville, TN business, one of the first actions you might take is to file a claim with your insurance company. However, if a natural disaster has caused widespread destruction in the area, your local claim services might be inundated with calls. If so, then working with a storm damage cleanup service may offer several advantages when it comes to getting your claim prepared and filed promptly.

1. Vendor Partnership

Some emergency response services partner with insurance companies to assist them with multiple claims in times of extreme need. When you work with these vendors, you may have more of a direct line to an agent if you need to ask questions, want to schedule a visit for the insurance adjustor or other claim services. This can be to your advantage, no matter how many other businesses in the area have been affected.

2. Faster Damage Estimates

When your business is damaged by fire or flooding, it can be difficult to gauge how much damage has been done simply by eyeballing the property. For example, in the case of flooding, interior walls and the padding material under carpeting may have been damaged by moisture. However, since these problems are not plainly visible, they may be overlooked. Having a professional storm damage service survey your building may result in a more accurate estimate.

3. Faster Service

Disaster response teams from restoration services like SERVPRO are trained to move quickly in the event of a major natural disaster so they can perform mitigation duties and attempt to reduce the amount of damage your building might suffer. The faster they arrive at your business, the quicker you can get a complete report and file your insurance claim, which may help streamline the process.

When disaster strikes your Knoxville, TN business, it can be difficult to know where to begin when reporting the damage to your local insurance claim services. However, working with a storm damage and cleanup service may offer several advantages that help you get back on your feet.

Smoke Alarms Save Lives

3/31/2019 (Permalink)

Smoke Alarm West Knoxville

Smoke alarms save lives when properly installed and maintained, according to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA).

In homes, smoke alarms should be in every bedroom, outside each sleeping area, and on every level, including the basement. Extra smoke alarms may be needed in large homes.

Test smoke alarms monthly using the test button. Smoke alarms with non-replaceable batteries need the entire smoke alarm unit replaced every ten years. Other alarms need batteries replaced every year, and the group replaced every ten years. If the alarm chirps are signaling low battery, take the proper steps to replace the unit or the batteries immediately.

Never disable or remove the battery from an alarm. Almost half of the fires where smoke alarms were present but did not activate had missing or disconnected batteries (NFPA).

If you need help installing, testing or changing batteries in your smoke alarms, contact your local fire department, an electrician or the American Red Cross.

Be sure your home has a fire emergency plan in place and conduct regular fire drills with your family.

For more information on Emergency Preparedness, contact your local SERVPRO® of West Knoxville/ Farragut Professional.

PREPARING FOR A FLOOD

3/15/2019 (Permalink)

Water Damage Knoxville

Flooding can happen fast in many environments. The American Red Cross recommends having the following list of items packed and ready to go in the event of an evacuation due to flooding.
• Water—3+ day supply; one gallon per person per day
• Food—3+ day supply of non- perishable, easy-to-prepare food
• Flashlight
• Battery-powered or hand-crank
radio (NOAA Weather Radio, if
possible)
• Extra batteries
• First Aid kit
• Medications (7-day supply) and
medical items (hearing aids with extra batteries, glasses, contact lenses, syringes, cane)
• Multi-purpose tool
• Sanitation/personal hygiene items
• Copies of secret documents
(medication list and pertinent medical information, deed/lease to home, birth certificates, insurance policies)
• Cell phone with chargers
• Family and emergency contact
information
• Extra cash
• Emergency blanket
• Map(s) of the area
• Baby supplies (bottles, formula,
baby food, diapers)
• Pet supplies (collar, leash, ID, food,
carrier, bowl)
• Tools/supplies for securing your home
• Extra set of car keys and house keys
• Extra clothing, hat, and sturdy shoes
• Rain gear
• Insect repellent and sunscreen
• Camera for photos of damage

Call The Cleanup Team That is Faster to Any Size Disaster

3/10/2019 (Permalink)

According to the National Weather Service (NOAA), "Approximately, five percent of all Presidential disaster declarations are associated with flooding.” NOAA lists the most common flood hazards in the United States as:
• Flash Flooding
• River Flooding
• Storm Surge and Coastal
Inundation from Tropical
and Non-Tropical Systems • Burn Scars/Debris Flows
(Caused by Wildfires)
• Ice/Debris Jams
• Snowmelt
• Dry Wash (Caused by heavy
rainfall in dry areas)
• Dam Breaks/Levee Failure

Just because you haven’t experienced a flood doesn’t mean you will not live in the future. 20% of all claims paid by the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) were for policies in low-risk communities. On average, floods cost $3.5 billion in annual losses in the United States.
When catastrophic water damage happens to you, SERVPRO® Franchise Professionals can help. They can help you prepare ahead of time with an Emergency Ready Profile® (ERP), or respond to any size disaster to begin cleanup and restoration to get you back in your home as soon as possible.
SERVPRO® of West Knoxville/Farragut Professionals are ready to help make it “Like it never even happened.”

PREPARING FOR A FLOOD

3/10/2019 (Permalink)

Water Damage Knoxville

Flooding can happen fast in many environments. The American Red Cross recommends having the following list of items packed and ready to go in the event of an evacuation due to flooding.
• Water—3+ day supply; one gallon per person per day
• Food—3+ day supply of non- perishable, easy-to-prepare food
• Flashlight
• Battery-powered or hand-crank
radio (NOAA Weather Radio, if
possible)
• Extra batteries
• First Aid kit
• Medications (7-day supply) and
medical items (hearing aids with extra batteries, glasses, contact lenses, syringes, cane)
• Multi-purpose tool
• Sanitation/personal hygiene items
• Copies of secret documents
(medication list and pertinent medical information, deed/lease to home, birth certificates, insurance policies)
• Cell phone with chargers
• Family and emergency contact
information
• Extra cash
• Emergency blanket
• Map(s) of the area
• Baby supplies (bottles, formula,
baby food, diapers)
• Pet supplies (collar, leash, ID, food,
carrier, bowl)
• Tools/supplies for securing your home
• Extra set of car keys and house keys
• Extra clothing, hat, and sturdy shoes
• Rain gear
• Insect repellent and sunscreen
• Camera for photos of damage

Mold Prevention Tips for Your Home’s Bathrooms

3/8/2019 (Permalink)

There are various steps you can take to prevent mold from appearing in your home’s bathrooms.

Mold Prevention Tips For Your Home’s Bathrooms

Finding water damage in a bathroom in your home in Farragut, TN is often frustrating enough on its own. Unfortunately, mold damage often follows. However, there are various steps you can take to prevent mold from appearing in your home’s bathrooms.

1. Clean and Dry the Room

Mold prevention doesn’t have to be complicated. Making sure the bathrooms in your home are kept clean make it harder for mold to grow in those areas. Using disinfectant cleaning supplies can discourage mold growth. After cleaning your bathrooms, it’s also helpful to dry down the surfaces you’ve cleaned in order to reduce the moisture in your bathroom, which mold often needs to grow.

2. Watch for Signs of Leaks

Water damage makes mold substantially more likely to grow, and routinely checking in areas where mold commonly grows can be helpful when it comes to noticing a leak. However, minor leaks aren’t always immediately apparent, and the longer leaks go unnoticed, the more damage that will likely occur. If you notice your water bill is higher than normal for no discernable reason, this can indicate that there may be a leak in your bathroom. If your home has been badly damaged by water, it might be useful to contact water and mold damage restoration experts.

3. Decrease Humidity Levels When Possible

Bathrooms are often humid, particularly after the shower or bath has been used. Avoiding using the shower or bath isn’t an option, but there are ways you can keep humidity levels low in your home’s bathrooms. However, turning on a fan while showering or bathing can help to decrease the humidity in the room. If you notice that the bathroom is still excessively humid even when using a fan, then you might want to consider using a dehumidifier to further keep the humidity low.

Although you can’t always avoid water damage in your home, it is often possible to prevent mold from growing in your bathrooms. Keeping your bathroom clean, monitoring your water usage and limiting the levels of humidity in your home can prevent mold from growing in your bathroom.

4 Reasons To Add SERVPRO to Your Preferred Vendors List

2/20/2019 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of West Knoxville/Farragut is ready to respond!

Reasons to Add SERVPRO to Your Preferred Vendors List

When you work as an insurance agent in Bearden, TN, it can be helpful to have a list of preferred vendors when a client needs restoration work done on their home. This can allow you to move forward more quickly and reduce the effects of decision fatigue that you may feel during the claims process. Here are some reasons why adding SERVPRO to your list is a good idea.

1. They Are Certified by the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification
Because they are certified by the IICRC, the company has a set of standards that they must adhere to. All employees will be trained to follow the necessary procedures to produce the highest quality work.

2. They Follow Strict Guidelines
In order to provide their insurance clients with the best, the company has their own standards for their vendor program franchises as well. There are several guidelines that must be followed for a franchise to receive client referrals. They also perform background checks on employees, so you can feel comfortable knowing that you will have only the best workers for your client.

3. They Provide Quality Work Quickly
As an insurance agent, your time is valuable. SERVPRO is available 24 hours a day, so they can get started on the restoration process as soon as you need them. They can begin mitigation within a few hours of your call, which means faster and less costly repairs.

4. They Use Their Claims Information Center To Keep Track of Important Information
When you are working on an insurance claim, you have a lot of information to keep track of. The CIC gives you access to important information like scanned documents and photos of damaged property all in one place.

A preferred vendors list is a great tool for an insurance agent. Adding a high-quality damage restoration company like SERVPRO to yours will help both you and your clients.

Heating Safety Tips

2/17/2019 (Permalink)

Heaters Can Cause Fire Damage

Keep anything flammable at least three feet away from heating equipment, like the furnace, fireplace, wood stove or a portable space heater. Have a three foot “kid-free zone” around open fires and space heaters.
-Make sure the fireplace has a sturdy screen to stop sparks from flying into the room. Ashes should be cool before putting them in a metal container. Keep the container a safe distance away from your home.
- Remember to turn portable heaters off when leaving the room or going to bed.
-Test smoke alarms monthly.
-Always use the right kind of fuel, specified by the manufacturer, for fuel-burning space heaters.
- Have heating equipment and chimneys cleaned and inspected every year by a qualified professional.
If your property does suffer fire damage, contact SERVPRO® of West Knoxville/Farragut.

Can Winter Storms Cause Water Damage?

2/12/2019 (Permalink)

Frozen pipes are one of the most common causes of water damage during the winter.

Can Winter Storms Cause Water Damage?

Water damage can occur at any time of year, but winter storms pose several unique risks. Find out more about the causes of a burst pipe, ice damming and leaks during cold weather, and how to prevent these situations.

Frozen Pipes

Frozen pipes are one of the most common causes of water damage during the winter. Water can freeze in an exposed pipe when the temperature dips below freezing. This blockage will cause pressure to build up in the frozen pipe and may cause the pipe to burst. Building owners or managers can take several measures to prevent frozen pipes:

  • Insulate exposed pipes
  • Drip faucets
  • Maintain consistent interior temperatures

These methods can help building owners avoid costly water damage from a burst pipe. This cause of major wintertime damage can usually be prevented. 


Ice Damming

A blocked drainage system can cause ice to melt and refreeze on the roof of a building. Standing water can cause any roofing materials to deteriorate. Make sure that roof drains, gutters and downspouts are clear, and that attic and roof temperatures remain as consistent as possible.

Leaks and Thawing

As snow and ice thaws, it may result in a leak. This is particularly the case if roofing or building materials have sustained damage due to winter storms. There are several ways to prevent leaks:

  • Regular annual inspections
  • Checks throughout the year
  • Monitoring the structure for leaks

Leaks from a roof or through a building envelope will cause water damage and may increase the risk of mold. It is important that building owners take measures to seal out water.

All of these factors may result in wintertime water damage to a commercial structure in Knoxville, TN. In the event of a burst pipe or any other type of damage, a building owner or manager should contact a mitigation and restoration company as soon as possible.

Refrigerator Line Breaks in Knoxville Home

2/7/2019 (Permalink)

Water Damage Knoxville Home

Water damage can happen at any time; it is often at inconvenient times. This was the case for Mrs. Gilmore. Thankfully SERVPRO of West Knoxville/Farragut was available. Mrs. Gilmore's refrigerator line broke which lead to massive amounts of water damage throughout the kitchen and the dining room. SERVPRO of West Knoxville/Farragut was able to come out that night and set up drying units to limit the damage.

After further assessment and consulting with Mrs. Gilmore we decided the best course was the replace all of the flooring in the kitchen. Mrs. Gilmore was able to pick out the style that she wanted and new kitchen's appliances With the help of SERVPRO of West Knoxville/Farragut a terrible situation was turned into a good one.

3 Steps To Smother a Grease Fire

2/4/2019 (Permalink)

Grease fire can burn hotter that other types of kitchen fire

3 Steps To Smother A Grease Fire

Grease fires can burn hotter than most other types of kitchen fires. It is important to know how to safely extinguish these fires, as using a pressurized fire extinguisher may actually cause this type of fire to spread. Here are the three steps necessary to safely smother a grease fire.

1. Turn Off the Heat

The first step to handle smoking grease or a fire is to turn off the source of heat. This can prevent grease from becoming even hotter. Do not attempt to move a pan or pot off of the burner, as motion can intensify the fire.

2. Smother the Flames

There are two effective ways to quickly smother flames. It is a good idea to keep baking soda and salt handy if you are cooking with large amounts of grease. Baking soda consists of sodium bicarbonate, which releases carbon dioxide. Salt draws heat out of grease to limit its combustibility.

An intense grease fire will draw in oxygen through convection and may resist this smothering effect. Limit the supply of oxygen by immediately covering the pot or pan with a metal lid, cookie sheet, or another pot or pan.

3. Make Sure the Fire Is Out

Monitor the situation to make sure that a fire is not spreading. Wait at least 20 minutes for grease to cool before checking the condition under the cover. Lifting a cover too quickly can introduce a surge of oxygen that may cause a fire to reignite.

These steps should make it possible to safely contain a grease fire, which will limit safety risks and property damage. In the event of a fire that is too intense to smother, close the doors leading to the kitchen and evacuate. Any type of fire can result in extensive damage. If this occurs, contact a fire cleanup and restoration service located in Bearden, TN.

Is an Air Purifier Right for Your Home?

1/21/2019 (Permalink)

HEPA filters are mechanical air filters

Look For An Air Filtration To Clean Your Home Air

Air pollution is a valid concern for almost anyone that lives in a city. The dust, contaminates, and odor can sometimes be heavy enough to be seen, and they have even been given the pollutants a name – smog. However, your home in Knoxville, TN, can also develop dust, contaminates, and odor problems. Moving air about with a fan is not the best solution; it only moves the problem from one room to another. Why not look into an air filtration device to help clean your home’s air?

Finding the Facts

Mold, dust and odors are almost always in the world around us. When those particles are inside your home, they are typically considered to be inside air pollutants, and generally, they fall into one of these categories:

  • Gaseous
  • Biological
  • Chemical

This includes dust mites, cooking odors, mildew, viruses and animal dander.

Breathing Much Easier

Air filtration systems filter the pollutants out of the air from all three categories. Keeping the allergens and mold spores filtered out of the air can provide a cleaner atmosphere inside your home, and this can combat lingering odors, as well as deliver fresh, breathable air.

Removing the Particles

Different purifiers employ different methods to filter the air, but often they work in one of these three ways.

  •  Electrostatic precipitation
  •  Ionization
  •  Filtration

Each method has its pros and cons, but most people find the HEPA filtration system the most cost effective. The air is forced through the filter where the particles are captured. As the clean air rushes out of the filter, it can then fill your home with fresh, renewed air.

When trying to decide which of these systems is right for your family, contact a team of air and mold professionals that can help you choose which of the air filtration machines will effectively remove the particles in the room. Allergens, dust, and mold can try to take over your home, but you can fight back with an air purifier system just right for your home.

Flood Damage and Frozen Pipes: 3 Important Insurance Facts for

1/17/2019 (Permalink)

Busted pipe in a Bearden, TN home

Flood Damage and Frozen Pipes

Investing in homeowner’s insurance can protect your Bearden, TN, home when unexpected disaster strikes. However, when it comes to flooding, you may worry about gaps in your coverage and which circumstances are covered. Some instances, such as flooding as a result from a burst water pipe during cold weather may allow you to file an insurance claim; however, it is important to understand what you can expect as far as how much of the damage will be covered and what you might have to pay for out of pocket.

1. Preventative Measures Can Affect Coverage

Some insurance companies require that you take preventative measures to prevent frozen pipes. For example, insulating them in cold weather and performing regular maintenance that keeps them in good working order may be necessary for filing an insurance claim in the event of a pipe break. It is wise to understand the terms of your insurance coverage so you can take steps to comply.

2. Affected Surroundings Are Usually Covered

Because water damage from a burst pipe can be significant, your homeowner’s insurance will likely cover affected surfaces such as ruined flooring, soaked drywall and wood cabinets. If any building material needs to be removed in order to access frozen pipes, you might be compensated for this too, especially if the temperature plummeted unexpectedly and you did not have the opportunity to insulate them.

3. Pipe Repair Costs Are Typically Not Covered

While your insurance company may help you cover costs for a flood damage and restoration service to come in and repair floors, walls and other structures, you will likely have to pay a plumber out of pocket when it comes to repairing the broken pipe itself. Since this can be a considerable expense, it is a good idea to have a plan in place and to retain the services of a trusted professional before this type of problem occurs.

Being able to file insurance claim when a frozen water pipe breaks and damages your Bearden, TN, home can give you peace of mind during such an incident. However, it is wise to learn the details of your coverage so you are prepared in the face of an indoor winter flood.

Winter Weather Worries

1/15/2019 (Permalink)

Winter Weather Knoxville

Winter weather can bring about more issues than just slippery roads and a sidewalk to shovel. If you live where temperatures sink below freezing level, you are also at risk for frozen pipes and ice dams, which can create a major disaster at your home or property.

FROZEN PIPES
Frozen pipes are often those exposed to the cold weather, such as those outside your house, or in cold areas such as basements, attics, garages or kitchen cabinets.
A frozen pipe can burst at the point where the ice blockage inside the pipe is located, but typically the rupture is caused by the backflow pressure between the water source and the obstruction. A burst pipe can cause considerable damage to your property if not addressed quickly.

To prevent pipes from freezing, here are a few steps you can take, according to The American Red Cross.
-Be sure to thoroughly drain water from swimming pool and sprinkler lines, as well as outside hoses.
-Open kitchen cabinets to let warm air circulate near the plumbing.
-When the weather is frigid, let water drip from faucets that may come from exposed pipes.
-Keep your heat set to the same temperature both day and night.

ICE DAMS
Ice dams can be a little-known, but a significant problem during the snowy season. They form when heated air melts roof snow downward into water dammed behind still-frozen ice. When the trapped water cannot safely flow or run into the gutter system, it can backflow under the roof ’s shingles and into the structure’s interior areas, as well as causing gutters and shingles to move or fall.
Icicles can be an initial sign of an ice dam, according to Travelers.com. To spot ice dams inside, “check for water stains or moisture in your attic or along the ceiling of the exterior walls of your house. Water stains or moisture may be an indication that an ice dam has formed and water has penetrated the roof membrane.”
Removing an ice dam as soon as it is found is vital to help prevent damage to your property and can be done using heated cables, a roof shovel or calcium chloride ice melter.
If winter weather causes water damage to your property, SERVPRO of West Knoxville is only a call away, 24/7, ready to restore to preloss condition.

Is Smoke Damage Covered By Insurance?

1/8/2019 (Permalink)

Smoke damage in a Knoxville, TN building

If your commercial building or one adjacent to yours recently sustained a fire, and you are left dealing with smoke-related damage, you may be worried about making a claim with your insurance company. Is smoke damage a covered loss? Read on to learn everything you need to know about smoke claims to put your mind at ease.

Soot Damage and Insurance

In most cases, damage from smoke will be covered by your commercial insurance policy. This is even the case if the fire occurred at a company right next to yours. However, there are some steps you need to take to properly file your claim and increase the chances of it being accepted. They are as follows:

  1. Contact your insurance company to report the smoke damage and file a claim.
  2. Assess your loss and prepare a smoke cleanup plan with the help of professionals.
  3. Record proof of any damage and repairs through photographs, receipts and other documents.
  4. Prepare for the insurance adjuster to arrive for surveying purposes.

Following the steps above will increase the chances of restoring your property as best as you can. Having a solid plan in place will also make it more likely that your insurance company will approve your claim.

Smoke Cleaning Assistance

As you can see above, creating an action plan for cleanup is one of the most important parts of this entire claims and restoration process. A reliable Knoxville, TN, fire damage restoration company should be able to arrive on an emergency basis, assess the situation and help you build a cleanup plan that will likely include reducing odors and eliminating smoke from your building.

Smoke damage isn’t always easy to deal with, and communication with your insurance provider can be even more frustrating. Following the steps above and knowing where to turn for cleanup help can make your business’s post-fire future more positive.

Water Damage Strikes When You Least Expect It

1/1/2019 (Permalink)

Water Damage Knoxville Home

Water damage can happen at any time, often when you least expect it. This was the case for Mr. Watson and his family in Knoxville, TN. Their washing started to leak while they were away on vacation. His first call was too SERVPRO of West Knoxville/Farragut. The water damage had affected the bathroom, laundry room, kitchen, and bedroom. We were able to respond within the hour and preserve most of the flooring in those rooms. We set up drying units throughout the rooms. We then replaced a small portion of the tile in the bathroom. Because we were able to come out so quickly the water damage was cleaned up within two days. 

Prevention Is Key to Avoiding Ice Dams

12/30/2018 (Permalink)

Ice dam can cause extensive water damage to your Knoxville, TN home

It's easy to fall into the habit of ignoring the gutters that run along the roof of your home. Unfortunately, that hard-to-see space can trap a lot of debris throughout the year, and when they become clogged with leaves and dirt, you and your home may suffer from the effects of an ice dam.

There are a few crucial facts all homeowners should understand about this type of winter water damage:

  • When ice builds up at the edge of the roof, water pools and melts into the home.
  • The resulting damages often go unnoticed until repairs are very expensive.
  • Ice dams and their related damages are avoidable.
  • Proper insulation can prevent dams from forming.
  • Roof maintenance and ventilation also stop dams from forming.

How Do Dams Happen?

As winter temperatures fluctuate, snow on the roof melts and refreezes. Just a couple of inches of snow on the roof can melt and refreeze into dams. As the cycle of thawing and freezing continues, a roof leak may develop until water seeps behind siding or inside the walls. Once there, the developing damage is often out of sight until much of the home has been impacted.

You Can Prevent an Ice Dam

Ceiling insulation with a rating of R-38 and about 12 inches of either cellulose or fiberglass is a strong preventative step. This layer of insulation should be consistently deep with special care given to areas where the walls meet the ceiling. Make sure insulation is sealed appropriately to prevent air and moisture from seeping where it shouldn't be.

Next, make sure there's a soffit-to-ridge ventilation system installed along the roof. If you have some ventilation, but you're not sure if it's adequate, contact a water damage restoration professional to assess the existing system.

Finally, restrict the loss of heat from the warmth indoors through the attic. Spray foam urethane, caulking, and weather-stripping can seal up holes, such as around lighting fixtures.

An ice dam can cause extensive water damage to your Knoxville, TN, home. Act now to put prevention techniques in place and contact professionals for help when you don't know how to proceed.

How a Post-fire Board Up Can Protect Your Home

12/30/2018 (Permalink)

Using an emergency board up to protect your home can help prevent other kinds of loss as well

How a Post-fire Board Up Can Protect Your Home

If your Bearden, TN, home has suffered a fire then you may be wondering if it’s necessary to board up the building. Many fire damage restoration professionals recommend using tarps or boards to cover the damaged areas of your home for several reasons.

1. Helps Prevent Further Damage

On its own fire damage may leave you with costly repairs, but it can also leave your home open to other elements that can cause further damage. Using tarps and boards to cover the damaged areas can help prevent flooding from rain or snow, wind damage, and even animal intrusion. Covering damaged areas may also make it easier to conduct repairs one section at a time.

2. Helps Maintain Your Insurance Coverage

When you board up your home after a fire you may also be following the requirements of your insurance provider. Protecting your home against additional damage can be considered part of your responsibilities as the homeowner. Failure to do so could cause problems with your claim. In many cases your insurance provider may have professionals they recommend for the job.

3. Helps Prevent Additional Loss

Using an emergency board up to protect your home can help prevent other kinds of loss as well. Boarding over the damaged areas may dissuade intruders from taking advantage of the opportunity to get inside via an unprotected opening. Boarding over damage is also one way to show that the home has not been abandoned, and will be receiving repairs.

Constructing a board up over the damaged areas of your home after a fire can help you in a number of ways. This practice can help protect your home against further damage, help dissuade intruders from taking advantage of damaged areas, and in some cases help maintain your insurance coverage. If you are unsure how to properly cover the damaged area, a professional may be able to help.

Under Construction: How To Prevent Water Damage

12/30/2018 (Permalink)

Water damage in Farragut, TN

A building doesn’t have to be fully constructed to have water damage. Construction projects are often delayed by water pipe repair and the subsequent damages a busted pipe causes. To keep your construction business in Farragut, TN, as profitable as possible, you want to prevent the flooding you can and mitigate the rest quickly.

The Cost of Damage

Any delay during a project can cost you money. When you have to stop construction because of a broken pipe, there are several expenses involved:

  • Extra labor needed to conduct the repair and rebuild the damaged area
  • Mitigation charges from professional water remediation services
  • Additional materials needed to rebuild the damaged section

Non-monetary costs of the delay may include damage to your reputation and potentially impatient client response. Your insurance may cover some of the financial burden, but repairing the relationship with your client is your responsibility alone.

The Prevention of Damage

Timely water pipe repair is a great solution, but it’s even better to avoid flooding in the first place. Before construction begins, create a plan for careful on-site water management. Institute a drainage system, and test pumps and plumbing before major work begins. During construction, it’s easy to let your plan fall to the wayside, so hire people to make sure your team follows the guidelines you set forth. They should monitor piping systems and help keep the air pressure in the pipes under control. Finally, keep water mitigation specialists on speed dial to ensure that, if there is a problem, you can get it resolved before a large area of your site is flooded.

Preventing water damage at your construction site increases the chance that you may never have to worry about water pipe repair. By keeping water sources closely monitored and structuring drainage systems wisely, you are more likely to stay on schedule, and that helps you please your client.

Using a Portable Fire Extinguisher

12/3/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Extinguisher

A portable fire extinguisher can be a life and property saving tool when used correctly. In order to operate an extinguisher, the National

Fire Prevention Association suggests remembering the word PASS:

-Pull the pin. Hold the nozzle pointing away from you and release
the locking mechanism.

-Aim low. Point the extinguisher at the base of the fire.

- Squeeze the lever slowly and evenly.

- Sweep the nozzle from side-to-side.

Read the instructions on the fire extinguisher and become familiar
with them before a fire breaks out. Remember, extinguishers do have
limitations. It is also important to ensure you have the correct type of extinguisher for your facility. For more information
on the different types of fire extinguishers and to ensure you have the proper one, visit nfpa.org.

When To Get a Commercial Mold Inspection

11/27/2018 (Permalink)

Mold damage in a Rocky Hill,TN commercial property

You have your heart set on buying a commercial property in Rocky Hill, TN. One catches your eye and it is love at first sight. Before you sign the papers, do you need a mold inspection? Here are some helpful tips to know when to take this step.

What Does an Inspection Involve?

When a professional investigates a potential mold problem, they often perform these tasks:

  • Look for evidence of visible mold or moisture inside and outside the building.
  • Investigate potential problem areas, such as older roofing or windows. If you have disclosure papers or building records, provide these to the inspector.
  • Use specialized equipment to measure humidity, test air quality or obtain samples for analysis.

When Is This Step Necessary?

It is always your choice whether or not to have a mold inspection completed on the building. It may seem costly upfront, but save you money in the long run. You should strongly consider this step in these instances:

  • You notice evidence of current or past water damage. Pay close attention in bathrooms, on ceilings and around doors and windows.
  • You observe visible mold. Oftentimes, when present it goes further than the naked eye can see.

There Is Mold, Now What?

If the assessment reveals a mold problem, you need to make a decision. You can walk away from the property or purchase and remediate the issue. If you choose the latter, partner with a mold restoration specialist to ensure that the work is done safely and effectively.

When in the market to buy a new commercial property in Rocky Hill, TN, use your heart and your head. Choose your dream property, then consider all relevant information before you finalize the purchase. If you notice water damage or other potential problems, have a comprehensive mold inspection completed. If you then choose to go forward, work with a specialist for proper mold remediation.

Safety First Before You Eat

11/26/2018 (Permalink)


Each November, families gather to celebrate Thanksgiving by preparing a delicious feast, but if you don’t practice safe cooking habits, your happy holiday could become hazardous very quickly.

According to the National Fire Protection Association, cooking is the main cause for home fires and injuries, with Thanksgiving being the peak day for cooking-related fires.

Review the following safety tips to help ensure you can enjoy a safe holiday.

-Never leave cooking food unattended–stay in the kitchen when frying, grilling or broiling food. If someone must leave the kitchen for even a short period of time, they should turn off the stove.

-Check food regularly while cooking and remain in the home while cooking. Use a timer as a reminder that the stove or oven is on.

-Keep the kids away from the cooking area. Enforce a “kid-free zone” and make them stay at least three feet away from the stove.

- Keep anything flammable–pot holders, oven mitts, wooden utensils, paper or plastic bags, food packaging, and towels or curtains—away from the stove, oven or any other appliance in the kitchen that generates heat.

-Do not wear loose clothing or dangling sleeves while cooking.

-Clean cooking surfaces on a regular basis to prevent grease buildup.

- Purchase a fire extinguisher to keep in the kitchen. Contact the local fire department for training on the proper use of extinguishers.

-Always check the kitchen before going to bed or leaving the home to make sure all stoves, ovens, and small appliances are turned off.

-Install a smoke alarm near the kitchen, on each level of the home, near sleeping areas and inside and outside bedrooms. Use the test button to check it each month. Replace all batteries at least once a year.

SERVPRO® of West Knoxville wishes you a safe
and happy holiday season.

3 Fire Extinguisher Tips for Business Owners

11/23/2018 (Permalink)

A fire extinguisher can protect your staff and property in Bearden,TN

Fire Extinguisher at Your Commercial Property

Keeping a fire extinguisher at your commercial property in Bearden, TN, is a wise choice. In an emergency, effective use of the device reduces potential fire damage and protects staff. Consider the following three tips:

1. Purchase the Right Extinguisher

Do your homework before going shopping. Look into local fire code ordinances to determine how many devices you need for your property based on the square footage. There are also different classes of extinguishers depending on possible hazards at your place of business.

  • Class A – Paper, cloth, wood
  • Class B – Flammable liquids such as gasoline
  • Class C – Electrical fires
  • Class D – Metals including lithium, titanium and magnesium
  • Class K – Cooking oils or grease in a kitchen fire

2. Train Staff on Correct Usage Techniques

It is not enough to have a fire extinguisher present, employees must be trained on proper usage. Extinguishers are most effective on small fires in the early stages. For portable extinguishers, the PASS method is an easy way to teach and learn.

  • Pull – Remove the pin
  • Aim – Point the nozzle at the bottom of the flames
  • Squeeze – Maintain pressure on the handle to activate the device
  • Sweep – Move the device from side to side towards the fire

3. Plan for Fire Emergencies

Extinguishers are part of a more comprehensive safety plan. In the case of a fire emergency, there are other considerations for both staff safety and minimizing fire damage.

  • Evacuation – Practice procedures, exit routes and roles
  • Supplies – In addition to extinguishers, have disaster supply kits on hand
  • Hazards – Map potential onsite hazards, such as combustibles
  • Insurance – Obtain coverage through a commercial insurance company
  • Recovery – Have contact information readily available for a fire restoration company

A fire extinguisher is a smart way to protect your staff and property in Bearden, TN, in the event of a fire emergency. Prepare ahead of time by purchasing the appropriate device, training staff and knowing what to do during and in the aftermath of a fire.

Property Loss and Flood Damage: How To Make a Flood Damage Claim

11/18/2018 (Permalink)

Flooded living room in a Farragut,TN home

Standard Process To Filling A Claim

A flood claim can be overwhelming since, at times, it follows in the wake of significant property loss. Thankfully, as insurers are at the tip of the bureaucratic food chain, there is a standard process to filing a claim, which should ease some of your stress.

1. Notify Your Insurance Provider

While the emotional response to a flood can be devastating and even mentally crippling, the first thing to do is notify your insurance provider. Notifying your insurance provider accomplishes two things:

  • It begins the process of rebuilding your life and your property.
  • It provides clear expectations of responsibility between homeowner and insurer.

After initiating contact, your insurer will likely schedule a visit from an adjuster to assess the damage to your property and to determine ultimate causality.

2. Document All Property Damage

The essential piece of any flood claim is the documentation of all property damage. True, the adjuster will take note of obvious property damage, but you will want to do your own walk-through and photograph any damage you see; not because adjusters aren’t trustworthy, but because you know your property better.

3. Compile and Complete a Proof of Loss Statement

An insurance claim typically requires a Proof of Loss statement, which is submitted within 60 days of the incurred damage. This document consists of your sworn statement, the claim amount, and any supporting proof or documentation. You can and should include any photographs and receipts in this file.

4. Collect Restoration Estimates

Once you have filed your claim and an adjuster approves further action, you can collect estimates for any necessary restoration work. Collecting estimates is as easy as calling a few emergency restoration companies from the Farragut, TN, area and scheduling a visit. Once a list is compiled, you can present it to your insurer, and they will help you select the best option.

Flood damage is a nuisance, and it can be emotionally and physically exhausting sorting through the destruction. Fortunately, a flood claim is a predictable procedure with standard practices and steps that are typically followed by every insurer.

Don’t Let a Broken Pipe Burst Your Bubble

11/7/2018 (Permalink)

Kitchen flood after a pipe burst in a Knoxville,TN residence

When a pipe breaks in your home, you often find yourself dealing with a huge mess. Bursting pipes involve so much more than the break itself; you also have damage from the expulsion of water to contend with in the aftermath. Instead of panicking, however, just take a deep breath and follow these tips to take control of the situation.

Put Safety First

Before anyone can fix the broken pipe or begin the clean-up process, you need to take a few steps to keep everyone safe up until help arrives and while repairs are underway.

  • Turn off electrical breakers that may be impacted by the escaping water.
  • Shut off the main water valve to keep any damage from worsening.
  • Relieve pressure that may still be in the pipes by turning on a faucet.

Failing to address these safety concerns could result in electrocution or more excessive flooding and damage to your belongings. You have to act quickly and decisively to protect yourself and your home before you can move forward with repairs.

Assess the Damage

Depending on the amount of liquid released by the bursting pipes, you can use towels to begin mopping up any standing water on surfaces. Remove your furniture and other belongings from the affected area to prevent further deterioration. Understand that visible wetness is only on the surface. It’s more than probable that you’ll be dealing with harm done by water that has seeped down into walls and flooring, as well.

Fix the Problem

A Knoxville,TN, professional restoration service can best assist you with ensuring that all water damage caused by the break and any lingering moisture is found and repaired appropriately. It’s imperative to get them in quickly to avoid mold growth or secondary damage to your home’s structure. Once the immediate risk to your house is mitigated, you can focus on the logistics of taking care of the original leak source. Bursting pipes can be daunting, but you don’t have to face the recovery alone.

How To Mitigate Fire and Water Damage

10/23/2018 (Permalink)

Fire damage in Farragut,TN

Firefighters rely on hoses that are capable of dispensing between 300 to 800 gallons of water per minute or more, depending on the hydrant and fire hose. As a result, fire suppression efforts often lead to a combination of extensive fire and water damage in homes in Farragut, TN. Specialized mitigation and restoration methods are necessary to prevent the primary fire damage from becoming rapidly compounded and exacerbated by water. A company that specializes in both types of damage should pursue these three measures to mitigate damage.

1. Remove Water

The water used to put out a fire starts as clean, treated Category One water. Exposure to ash, soot, and smoke quickly degrades this water to Category Three flood water. A mitigation service will start by pumping out the water used for fire suppression.

2. Replace Materials

When no standing water remains, restoration experts can determine which building materials are capable of being cleaned or repaired and which need to be replaced. They will have to assess materials damaged by fire, water, or a combination of these two factors. This process will take longer than restoring either type of damage alone, as water can rapidly intensify the staining that results from fire damage.

3. Prevent Damage

In addition to concerns about structural integrity and air quality, water damage also introduces the risk of mold growth. A service specializing in both types of damage can take measures to ensure that no rebuilding occurs until the location is clean and completely dry, which can lower the likelihood that mold will develop.

If your home has been exposed to damage from both fire and water, rely on skilled restoration professionals with the experience and equipment to address all of the factors involved. Act quickly to notify your insurance provider and contact a water and fire damage restoration service in Farragut, TN.

Keeping Wind Damage in Check

10/17/2018 (Permalink)

Cover your roof with a tarp to help control water damage in your Bearden,TN building

When the weather turns ugly in Bearden, TN, homes aren’t the only structures are risk. Business owners know they must take steps to protect their companies. While preventing a roof leak is a good strategy for protecting inventory and equipment, you can’t afford to ignore the risks of high winds. Here are four ways to protect your business from them.

1. Reinforce Garage-Style Doors

Garage-style doors often do not fare wear during inclement weather. These doors are usually large and flimsy. If your business has one, you should think about reinforcing it. Lumber or metal rods can increase the chances that your company’s garage doors will ride out the storm without damage. Moreover, if you are expecting heavy rains, you should ensure all doors are securely closed before evacuating ahead of a storm.

2. Clear Trees and Other Debris

Damage to roofing systems can cause a roof leak. If you can keep trees and other debris from crashing through your business’s roof, you are ahead of the game. Consider trimming overhanging branches and removing landscaping waste a few times each year.

3. Anchor Projectiles

Before severe weather hits, you should consider walking around the outside of your business. Pay special attention to possible projectiles. If you see anything that may fly freely through the air during a storm, you should anchor it. Moving hazards inside or using tie-down straps is often an effective approach.

4. Use Tarps and Plywood

Water damage can destroy the inside of your business. If you have a damaged roof or missing shingles after a wind storm, tarps and plywood can help control water damage. Use these until you have time to schedule a total roof repair.

If you have a roof leak or other storm damage, a reputable restoration service can likely help you return your business to its pre-storm condition. Still, with a bit of effort, you can keep wind damage in check.

How Long Does Water Damage Cleanup Take?

10/8/2018 (Permalink)

Harwood damage in a Deane Hill,TN home

Water damage cleanup can take anywhere from two to 10 days. You should account for the type of building materials and source of water, such as bursting pipes, leaks, or flooding. The extent and duration of the damage may also prolong the cleanup process.

The Building Materials

Certain building materials require special consideration. Hardwood floors, in particular, can prolong the duration of cleanup when there are several factors involved:

  • Water permeating the polyurethane coating
  • Damaged planks
  • Sanding, scraping, or retrofitting of solid hardwood
  • Wet plywood subfloor
  • Moist concrete under the subfloor

Hardwood flooring should be dry all the way down to the concrete prior to restoration. Other building materials must also be completely dry before being repaired or replaced.

The Type of Water Damage

The source of the water that has caused the damage can add steps to the cleanup process.

  • Category One water from bursting pipes is clean and only needs to be dried.
  • Category Two gray water should be dried and disinfected.
  • Category Three black water requires removal of solid waste, drying, and disinfection.

Once you fix the broken pipe or the other source of damage, call a restoration service.

The Extent of the Damage

Extensive damage due to flooding will probably take longer to restore than a smaller area affected by a backup, broken pipe, or leak. Account for the square footage exposed to water when estimating the length of the restoration process.

The Duration of the Damage

The longer building materials have been exposed to water, the more extensive the restoration process. Standing water that goes unnoticed for hours or days can lead to more severe secondary damage.

Regardless of the conditions in your home in Deane Hill, TN, you can count on the expertise and equipment of restoration professionals. Call a plumber to fix bursting pipes and hire a residential restoration company to eliminate water and mitigate secondary damage.

What To Do Before Help Arrives

10/7/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage

A fire can leave behind soot, smoke damage and a host of other problems.
Ceilings, walls, woodwork, carpeting, and floors will often need a thorough
professional cleaning. If your home or business suffers a fire, it is important to take the appropriate steps to prevent further damage until your local SERVPRO® of West Knoxville and Farragut arrive. The following tips may help reduce damage and increase chances of a successful restoration.

DO:

Limit movement in the home to prevent soot particles from being embedded into upholstery and carpet.

Keep hands clean. Soot on hands can further soil upholstery, walls, and woodwork.

Place dry, colorfast towels or old linens on rugs, upholstery, and carpet traffic areas.

If electricity is off, empty freezer/refrigerator completely and prop doors open to help prevent odor.

Wipe soot from chrome kitchen/bathroom faucets, trim and appliances, then protect these surfaces with a light coating of lubricant.

If heat is off during winter, pour RV antifreeze in sinks, toilet bowls, holding tanks and tubs to avoid freezing pipes and fixtures.

Tape double layers of cheesecloth over air registers to stop particles of soot from getting in or out of the HVAC system.

DON'T:

Don’t attempt to wash any walls or painted surfaces without first contacting your SERVPRO® of West Knoxville and Farragut

Do not attempt to clean any electrical appliances (TV sets, radios, etc.) that may have been close to fire, heat or water without first consulting an authorized repair service.

Do not consume any food or beverages that may have been stored close to fire, heat or water, as they may be contaminated.

If the ceiling is wet, do not turn on ceiling fans.

Wiring may be wet or damaged and cause electrical shock, and air movement may create secondary damage.

Don’t send garments to the dry cleaner. Improper cleaning may set
in smoke odor.

How to Restore Damage When a Toilet Floods Two Floors

9/26/2018 (Permalink)

Water damage on toilet in Farragut, TN

When a toilet floods in a commercial property, the resulting water damage may affect more than one floor. If water works its way down through building materials, it can lead to significant sewer damage that requires restoration. There are five steps you should take to clean up the damage and restore your property to sanitary condition.

1. Clear the Clog or Backup

Depending on whether the toilet is flooding due to a clog caused by inappropriate materials being flushed or a backed up sewer line, you may need to contact a plumber or sewage company. Until the problem is fixed, the leak may continue or become worse.

2. Remove Standing Water

Limit the severity of the leak between floors by eliminating all standing water near the flooded toilet. You will still need to determine the extent of the damage to building materials such as floors and ceilings.

3. Consult Restoration Specialists

Commercial water and sewer damage restoration experts can help you determine which materials will need to be replaced. These experts can also help with cleanup and remediation.

4. Clean and Disinfect the Area

Toilets that flood tend to lead to a leak of Category Two or Category Three water. Category Two water or gray water may contain bacteria or chemicals but does not contain solid waste. Category Three or black water contains solid waste. Either type of leak calls for thorough cleaning and disinfection.

5. Dry the Affected Area

Take measures to dry the area affected by sewage damage as quickly as possible. This can help to prevent mold and other secondary damage from starting to develop.

When you experience sewer damage in a commercial property in Farragut, TN, rely on the skills of professional plumbers and restoration experts. These specialists can resolve the problem quickly and completely, enabling the tenants of the building to get back to business.

4 Reasons You Should Avoid Driving Through Flooded Streets

9/19/2018 (Permalink)

SERVPRO trailer ready for any storm damage in Farragut, TN

A significant downpour in Farragut, TN, can backup drainage systems and cause waterways to overflow, resulting in flash floods. Traversing a flooded street can be extremely treacherous and should be avoided, if possible, for several reasons.

1. Water Depth

It’s easy to underestimate the depth of standing water. High water levels could stall your engine, eliminating your ability to control your vehicle. Attempting to restart a stalled vehicle could also result in significant engine damage.

2. Washed Out Road

Flood waters can also wash away roadways, removing the surface for your tires to grip. Without grip, you will have no control over your vehicle and will be at the mercy of water currents.

3. Fast-Flowing Water

If you drive into fast-flowing water, your vehicle could be easily swept away, endangering the welfare of yourself, your passengers and the emergency personnel dispatched to rescue you.

4. Dangerous Debris

Swift water currents can also carry large debris. If you enter a flooded street, your vehicle could be struck by floating debris. This could result in serious injuries or significant damage that could impede your ability to escape from the vehicle.

Additional Safety Tips

Avoiding flooded roads is the best course of action. However, if you are not able to find an alternate route, take extreme caution and follow these safety tips:

  • Drive slowly but steadily through the water
  • Try to drive in the middle of the roadway where the water may be shallower
  • Avoid driving through areas with downed power lines
  • If your vehicle gets washed off the road, abandon it for higher ground

A Dangerous Situation

Floods are dangerous, can cause significant destruction and often require extensive cleanup and restoration efforts. Most travel tips advise avoiding flooded streets because navigating flooded roadways can damage your vehicle’s engine and potentially endanger the lives of everyone inside the vehicle. If you cannot find an alternative route, drive cautiously and be prepared to abandon the vehicle if it becomes trapped in high water.

How To Control Mold Growth in Your Home

9/12/2018 (Permalink)

Bathroom covered with mold in a Knoxville, TN home

Mold thrives in moist environments. While many homeowners in Knoxville, TN, may not worry about it, certain conditions inside your home may make it more susceptible to mold growth. To minimize the risk, you should address leaking pipes, water damage and existing moisture points quickly and efficiently.

After a Flood

If your home sustains water damage from a flood or burst pipe, you must quickly remove saturated items and dry the affected area to prevent mold growth. Use a shop vac to soak up water and open windows to increase air flow. You can also use fans and a dehumidifier to expediate the process. For additional protection, mix once cup of bleach with one gallon of water and spray the mixture on hard surfaces in the affected area.

Be sure to thoroughly assess your carpets and drywall. If your drywall is wet, water may seep through to the insulation. When wet, both materials can harbor mold, so you will need to replace them. As an additional safeguard, you may wish to install mold-resistant drywall. However, you must ensure that the area is free of moisture before completing this repair.

Additional Tips

Quickly repairing even small water leaks is an important mold-prevention strategy. To further reduce your home’s mold risk, follow these tips:

  • Dry soaked materials within 24 - 48 hours
  • Inspect caulking around sinks and tubs and replace if cracked or deteriorating
  • Clean and repair gutters
  • Direct water away from your home’s foundation
  • Improve air circulation inside your home

High humidity can also expediate mold growth. One telltale sign of high humidity is condensation. If you notice condensation on widows or sills, you should apply weather stripping or a plastic film to reduce cold drafts. Increasing ventilation and using a dehumidifier can also help reduce the humidity level inside your home.

Mold Remediation

Mold prevention often requires a proactive approach. However, a flood or burst pipe can happen unexpectedly, creating significant water damage. To reduce your risk of mold under these circumstances, you may wish to consult a professional cleanup and restoration team equipped to handle a variety of situations, including mold remediation.

SEPTEMBER IS NATIONAL PREPAREDNESS MONTH PREPARE NOW

9/10/2018 (Permalink)

This year for National Preparedness Month, join your community in preparing for emergencies and disasters of all types and leading efforts to encourage the community as a whole to become more prepared. “Disasters happen” and not only devastate individuals and neighborhoods but entire communities. Learn how to be prepared.

Make and Practice Your Plan
Do you have an evacuation and shelter-in-place plan? Do you have a plan to communicate with your family before, during and after an incident? Do you have an emergency supply kit?

Make sure your family is informed and practiced in your emergency plan. Be sure to sign up for alerts and warnings for your area, and download other necessary apps to stay informed, such as the FEMA app.

Learn Life Saving Skills
Do you or someone in your family know CPR? Could you turn off your natural gas if necessary? Do you know how to take cover in an earthquake? Knowing these life-saving skills could mean life or death in an emergency situation for you, your family or your neighbors.

Check your Insurance Coverage
Have you reviewed your insurance coverage recently to see if you’re covered in a disaster? Evaluate which hazards are relevant to your area and obtain the appropriate insurance for your home, business, or other property and become familiar with your coverage.

Save for an Emergency
Are you prepared financially in case of a disaster? Does your family have an emergency fund for unexpected expenses after a flood or fire? Check out FEMA’s Emergency Financial First Aid Kit for an in-depth document to help you identify and compile important documents and account information all in one spot. Just search “EFFAK” on fema.gov for the free PDF. Whether its flood, wildfire or extreme winter weather, we must work together as a team to help ensure our families, businesses, places of worship and neighborhoods are prepared. Contact your local SERVPRO® of West Knoxville  to find out how they can help make it “Like it never even happened” if disaster strikes in your life.

National Day of Service and Remembrance SEPTEMBER 11, 2018

9/10/2018 (Permalink)

9/11

In honor and memory of those who died on September 11, 2001, as well as the survivors and First Responders, National Day of Service and Remembrance was established in 2009 as a day of reflection. Led by the Corporation for National and Community Service, this is a day to come together as Americans did following the events of 9/11 to help neighbors in need and to honor veterans and First Responders in your community.

On this day and every day, SERVPRO® salutes those heroes who arrive in the greatest times of need and stand strong in the face of disaster. These heroes are the First Responders who keep our communities safe in trying times.

Give back and make a difference in your community this year. To find a volunteer opportunity near you, or to register your National Day of Service and Remembrance event, visit nationalservice.gov/911day

It's The Water You Don't See

9/5/2018 (Permalink)

Knoxville water damage in bathroom.

Even small water damages have the potential to cause serious structural and indoor air quality issues over time.

The key to avoiding costly future restoration is to handle every problem as a real threat to your property. SERVPRO of West Knoxville has the equipment, training, and experience to find and dry unseen water before secondary damages occur. The proper equipment makes a measurable difference in reducing the water damage expense during a fire or water loss. When time matters, technology and equipment must be counted on to perform. SERVPRO of West Knoxville/Farragut will answer your call with rapid action and a full arsenal of drying equipment.

Moisture Sensors are used to detect moisture in carpets, baseboards, and walls.

  • Moisture Meters are used to determine the actual moisture content of various materials. The moisture tester provides accurate readings, allowing SERVPRO of West Knoxville to monitor the drying process.
  • Thermohygrometers measure temperature and relative humidity.

When armed with this information, SERVPRO of West Knoxville/Farragut Professionals can calculate and create an environment most conducive to drying. When facing contaminated water loss, it is not only important to dry the structure but the structure must also be disinfected and often deodorized.

  • Ultra-Low-Volume (ULV) Foggers will atomize liquid deodorizing agents, producing a fine mist that can easily penetrate the site where odor-causing residues may accumulate, This device can also be sued to inject fungicides and disinfectants into wall cavities and other hard-to-reach areas.
  • Thermal Foggers dispense solvent-based products by creating a dense fog. The fog consists of tiny particles of deodorant solution that attach to an neutralize odor-causing problems.

Preparing Your Business for a Flood: 3 Tips

8/21/2018 (Permalink)

Storm damage on a Farragut, TN home

When flooding affects Farragut, TN, your business may be at risk. If flood waters are powerful enough, they can force their way into your building and cause damage to floors, walls and your inventory. However, if you know that a flood is imminent, there are a few ways you can protect your business and minimize the destruction that a natural disaster like this might cause.

1. Make Backup Copies of Important Data

If you know your building might suffer storm damage, it is important to make data backup a high priority. Shipping records, customer data and inventory records may not be retrievable if your computer system is damaged by water, so having multiple files of this information can save you time and money in the aftermath of the flood. Consider cloud storage for real-time data retrieval.

2. Rent a Sump Pump

If your building sits on low ground and your basement or crawl space is prone to flooding, then you may want to invest in a sump pump. This machine, which is often used by flood damage and restoration service technicians, drains away excess water from the area where it located. Portable and underwater pumps can reduce the amount of standing you might encounter after the flood.

3. Do Not Hesitate To Act

Flood damage can happen quickly, especially in the case of flash floods. If you suspect this might happen, evacuate your business quickly and ensure that customers and employees are safe. Heavy rains can cause this type of flood, so it is wise to be vigilant and watch your local weather to be aware of any watches or warnings. If you realize a flood is imminent, shut down vital systems and try to seal off doors and windows after the building is empty.

When flooding impacts Farragut, TN, you may be concerned about the best way to protect your business. However, knowing how to take action and prepare yourself for a flood can reduce the damage and give you peace of mind both before and after the event.





Leave the Hassle of Board-Ups to the Professionals

8/20/2018 (Permalink)

Preparing for storm season.

Whether after a fire, storm, or other structural disasters, boarding up damaged property is a burden that no one should ever have to go through—especially if it is your property that has been damaged.

Boarding up damaged property incorrectly could cause secondary damages such as moisture or animal intrusion, making the situation even
worse. The process of boarding up after an unexpected damage can also be as dangerous as the damage itself.

Your SERVPRO® Franchise Professionals can board up the damaged property and mitigate and remediate the original damage, providing you with peace of mind while helping make it “Like it never even happened.”

What To Do When There is Water Leaking From a Light Fixture

8/14/2018 (Permalink)

Water damage on bedroom in Knoxville, TN

Water damage can happen to any homeowner. Common reasons for water damage in Knoxville, TN, include the following problems:

  • Aging structure
  • Harsh weather
  • Faulty pipes

Despite the reason, it’s important to note how easily water can enter your home. Sometimes, leakage can affect electrical appliances. Water in light fixtures can be dangerous and must be addressed immediately. Read more to learn what to look for and what to do when it happens.
What Does Water Leaking From a Light Look Like?
Ceiling damage is one of the easiest ways water can enter light fixtures. If you notice water pooling near a lightbulb or panel, this might be one of your first signs of a serious problem. Water is a conductor of electricity, and when it is in contact with electricity, it can harm people and create electrical fires.

What Do I Do When it Happens?

The first step of action that you can take is to turn off the electricity in that area of your home. This will protect you from being electrocuted when in contact with the water in the future. Be sure to directly turn off the circuit, not just the light switch. This will prevent any electricity from running through your home and causing any problems.
After you have successfully turned off the power, soak up the water with towels. If there is still water in light fixtures, remove the cover of the light bulb or panel and drain away the water. Inspect the ceiling around the fixture and look for any pooling water. You may have to cut away the ceiling to drain the water.
The most important thing to do is contact a professional to help you address the problem and make sure that all the water has been successfully removed. Consult with an electrician before turning the power back on.
Water in light fixtures can be fixed. By addressing the problem calmly, you can prevent any further damage and get the help that you need

How To Secure Your Building After a Fire

8/14/2018 (Permalink)

Air scrubber on a department store after fire damage in Ebenezer, TN

A primary concern with commercial property is security. A fire in your commercial building in Ebenezer, TN, most likely will result in a period of time when conventional security measures are ineffective. Fire damage can include broken windows and busted doors, leaving your building vulnerable to vandalism and looting. There are several ways you can secure your property after a fire.

Surveillance

Sometimes, all potential troublemakers need as a deterrent is the knowledge that they are being watched. There are a few ways to communicate that your property is under surveillance:

  • Cameras
  • Security lights
  • Professional guards

Hiring guards can be expensive, and you may have to hire more than one to secure the entire property. Cameras and lights are only effective if the trespassers notice them and are concerned about getting caught. While surveillance footage can be helpful after the fact, you probably need to employ other means to further secure your property.

Fencing

A security fence provides a clear barrier around your building. It takes a little more effort to get past a fence than it does to just walk up to a building that it left unguarded. A fence can also prove to your insurance company that you are doing what you can to limit problems to actual fire damage.

Boarding

Broken windows and doors leave a gaping hole through which those with ill intent can enter. The easiest way to secure your property during the fire cleanup process is by boarding up doors and windows. Many mitigation professionals will often board up your property for you as part of the emergency services they provide when they first arrive.

Security is important during cleanup. Knowing you have done everything you can to secure your building, from surveillance to putting up actual barriers, can give you some peace of mind while you are waiting for the fire damage to be repaired.

Do You Have Dirty Ducts?

8/5/2018 (Permalink)

Did you know your ventilation system is often the biggest culprit in poor indoor air quality? In most cases, the HVAC system has been operating for some time without much attention. Dirty ducts can circulate odors, contaminants such as mold, and irritating dust throughout your building or home.

A routine part of your local SERVPRO® of West Knoxville/Farragut Professional’s service is inspecting the heating, ventilation, and air conditioning unit (HVAC). Keeping the HVAC and ductwork clean can potentially extend the life-span of the equipment by allowing it to operate at peak condition, which may help save you money. Duct cleaning may not always be necessary.
In some circumstances, such as after a fire, smoke, or suspected mold growth, duct cleaning becomes an essential part of the cleanup process. In these cases, SERVPRO® of West Knoxville/Farragut  Professional can often restore the HVAC system and ductwork to pre-damage condition.

If you have a fuel-burning furnace, stove, or fireplace, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recommends they be inspected for proper functioning and be serviced before each heating season to protect against carbon monoxide poisoning.

The SERVPRO® Duct Cleaning System is proven and cost-efficient. Unlike the majority of duct cleaning services, your SERVPRO® of West Knoxville/Farragut Professional uses a portable ventilation and air duct cleaning system to examine ductwork and make a clean sweep, removing years of dust and grime.

The process begins by using patented equipment, including a roto-scraper, which automatically adapts to the duct’s shape and diameter while traveling through the duct, removing debris and filth before vacuuming begins.

Next, a powerful push-pull air delivery and collection system transfer the debris from the ducting to a 16-gallon container.

Air is filtered through a HEPA filtration system, removing 99.97 percent of the particles in the airstream. HEPA filters capture debris and keep the indoor environment clean.

As an optional process, a sealant or coating product may be sprayed to address odor or microbial concerns.

Filters will either be cleaned or replaced to remove odor and dirt.

For more information on duct cleaning, or to schedule an appointment, contact your local SERVPRO® of West Knoxville/Farragut  Professionals today.

Standards for Mold Cleaning

7/24/2018 (Permalink)

Remediating mold can be a serious matter in Knoxville, TN, or anywhere mold grows.

Remediating mold can be a serious matter in Knoxville, TN, or anywhere mold grows, and actually, that is anywhere indoors or outdoors where there is darkness, nutrition, moisture and a surface for it to spread. Some professionals are allied with Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC), a nonprofit organization of industry professionals that develops and upholds mold standards. Moreover, OSHA and the EPA offer guidelines for mold remediation but offer no federal certification programs. Some states, however, may require particular training and/or certification.

Regulatory Agencies for Mold

• Though there are no federal regulatory standards with regard to mold or established safe levels, publications from the EPA can be helpful in learning about why it is important to mold clean and the most effective and safe ways to do so in public buildings.
• OSHA publishes bulletins that offer guidelines and recommended procedures when undertaking mold remediation in commercial buildings. The use of personal protection equipment and containment of contaminated materials are subjects covered in OSHA publications.

Industry Professionals Set the Standards

Mold standards, then, are subject to ongoing examination and development by experts in the field of mold remediation. Professional knowledge of best practices informs the methods used by businesses contracted to do this kind of work, and the IICRC is the recognized body for certification. Hiring a firm designated by the IICRC can offer the peace of mind building managers seek when confronted with a mold problem that requires the services of professionals. Black mold can be particularly alarming, but like any of the other hundreds of mold found throughout the country, it can be safely and effectively remediated by experts in the field.

The good news is that in the absence of government-designated mold standards, there is a deeply reputable independent organization of industry professionals dedicated to the integrity of the field of mold remediation. For more information, visit http://www.SERVPROwestknoxvillefarragut.com/.

Can Lightning Start a House Fire?

7/24/2018 (Permalink)

If your home sustains damage from a lightning fire, contact a company that provides fire restoration services in Knoxville, TN.

Lightning is the cause of a number of house fires every year. A lightning fire typically occurs when a hot flash strikes a combustible object or travels through conductive metal objects and then ignites combustibles. It is important to recognize the risks of a direct strike and a phenomenon called side flash in order to safely respond to a strike on or around your home. It is almost always a good idea to call the fire department if your home has been struck.

1. Direct strike: A direct hot strike can cause a fire, particularly if it makes contact with combustible material in or around your home. As soon as your home is struck, check for any signs of fire and contact the fire department from a cellular phone as soon as possible. Avoid using a landline in case current is traveling through the wiring. You can rest easy once you are sure that your residence is not running an elevated risk for lightning fire.

2. Side flash: This phenomenon occurs when a strike travels through conductive metal features such as downspouts, gutters, gas lines, water pipes, window frames, or wiring and then ignites combustible building materials such as insulation. Lightning does not require conductive objects to travel down to the ground, but if a side flash occurs, it may lead to hidden fires within the attic or walls of a house.

Whether a direct hot strike starts a fire or the transmission of current through materials in your home in the event of a side strike ends up igniting combustible materials, only the fire department can ensure that your home is safe. A hidden house fire can put homeowners at risk and cause extensive damage prior to being detected. If your home sustains damage from a lightning fire, contact a company that provides fire restoration services in Knoxville, TN. For more information, visit http://www.SERVPROwestknoxvillefarragut.com/.

What Happens to You Solar Panels During a Storm?

7/24/2018 (Permalink)

You shouldn’t have to worry about panel damage, no matter what the weather is like outside.

Storms of all sizes come through Knoxville, TN, during various parts of the year. Many of these storms cause little concern and do little, if any, damage to your home. This doesn’t mean you don’t worry about the possibility of weather doing harm to your home. For example, high winds, rain, and other conditions may beat upon the solar panels in your roof. It’s important to understand what these items can withstand.

Hail Stones

Hail storms may be rare in your area, but when they hit, they can create problems for homeowners. You may be worried about panel damage when hail starts falling. However, you can have peace of mind knowing that these panels should be in good shape under these conditions.

• The panels are made of tempered glass and a highly flexible material.
• The panels are built to withstand impact from rock, hail or other materials.
• Panels are usually only damaged from hail when stones hit the same spot repeatedly.

Wind

This probably worries you more than hailstones, especially if you live in an area where hurricanes are common. While high winds can cause roof damage, they are much less likely to cause panel damage. This is because your solar panels are designed to withstand up to 140-mph winds. This means they can hold up against hurricanes and certainly other less potent storms.

Snow and Rain

If you purchase a high-quality set of panels, they should last 25 years or more. They are well-equipped to do their jobs well in the middle of a rainstorm or a snowstorm. The glass portion of the panels has protection to ward off any negative effects from precipitation.

When you purchased your solar panels, you may have been concerned that they would succumb to the elements. However, you shouldn’t have to worry about panel damage, no matter what the weather is like outside. For more information, visit http://www.SERVPROwestknoxvillefarragut.com/.

Do you have Mold?

7/15/2018 (Permalink)

Mold In Oak Ridge

Even small water damages have the potential to cause serious structural and indoor air quality issues over time. The key to avoiding costly problems in the future is to handle every water damage as a threat to your property. 

SERVPRO of Oak Ridge has the equipment and training and experience to find and dry unseen water before secondary damages occur. The proper equipment makes a measurable difference in reducing the damage expense during a fire or water loss. When time matters, technology, and equipment must be counted on to perform. SERVPRO of Oak Ridge will answer your call with rapid action and a full arsenal of drying equipment.

Here are a few of the tools that we use:

  1. Moisture Sensors are used to detect moisture in carpets, baseboards, and walls
  2. Moisture meters are used to determine the actual moisture content of various materials. The moisture tester provides accurate tester provides accurate readings, allowing SERVPRO of West Knoxville/Farragut to monitor the drying process.
  3. Thermo hygrometers measure temperature and relative humidity.

When armed with this information, SERVPRO of Oak Ridge can calculate and create an environment most conducive to drying. When facing a contaminated water loss, it is not only important to dry the structure, but the structure must also be disinfected and often deodorized. Ultra-Low-Volume Foggers will atomize liquid deodorizing agents, producing a fine mist that can easily penetrate the site where odor-causing residues may accumulate. 
This device can also be used to inject fungicides and disinfectants into wall cavities and other hard-to-reach areas. Thermal Foggers dispense solvent-based products by creating a dense fog. The fog consists of tiny particles of deodorant solution that attached to and neutralize odor-causing particles.

Destroy Odors with DEODORIZATION

7/9/2018 (Permalink)

Even a small fire can cause odors for years to come if the affected
areas are not properly cleaned and deodorized. Fire, smoke and soot
damage in your home or business can create unpleasant and potentially
permanent problems. As various materials burn, the smoke produced travels throughout the structure, leaving odorous residues and deposits on surfaces and in hard-to-reach places. Unless fast, professional action is taken, these residues and deposits can cause permanent damage to contents and may result in resurfacing odors.

With technicians certified by the Institute of Inspection, Cleaning, and Restoration (IICRC), SERVPRO® Of West Knoxville/Farragut provide specialized services that can rid your home or business of offensive odors left by fire or smoke damage. SERVPRO® OfWest Knoxville/Farragut do not cover up lingering odors with a fragrance; they seek out and remove the sources of the odor. If you or a customer suffer a fire damage or some other accident and require deodorization services, contact SERVPRO® OfWest Knoxville/Farragut. Whether it’s fire, water, or mold damage, or just a stubborn odor that refuses to go away, we’ll help make it “Like it never even happened.”

Celebrate Summer Safety

6/30/2018 (Permalink)

Campfire

Summer is a time to enjoy the great outdoors, but it is also important to keep safety in mind. Consider the following tips, provided by the National Fire Protection Association, to keep you and your family safe all summer long.

-When using a charcoal grill, only use starter fluids designed for barbecue grills: do not add fluid after coals have been lit. When using a gas grill, ensure the hose connection is tight; check hoses for leaks. Applying soapy water to the hose will easily and safely reveal any leaks. When camping always use a flame-retardant tent and set up camp far away from the campfire.

-Always build campfire downwind from the tent area. Clear vegetation and dig a pit before building your fire. Extinguish the fire before going to sleep or leaving the campsite.

-Store liquid fire starter (not gasoline) away from your tent and campfire and only use dry kindling freshen a campfire.

Do you have mold?

6/29/2018 (Permalink)

Mold Damage in Knoxville, TN

Even small water damages have the potential to cause serious structural and indoor air quality issues over time. The key to avoiding costly problems in the future is to handle every water damage as a threat to your property. 

SERVPRO of West Knoxville/Farragut has the equipment and training and experience to find and dry unseen water before secondary damages occur. The proper equipment makes a measurable difference in reducing the damage expense during a fire or water loss. When time matters, technology, and equipment must be counted on to perform. SERVPRO of West Knoxville/Farragut will answer your call with rapid action and a full arsenal of drying equipment.

Here are a few of the tools that we use:

  1. Moisture Sensors are used to detect moisture in carpets, baseboards, and walls
  2. Moisture meters are used to determine the actual moisture content of various materials. The moisture tester provides accurate tester provides accurate readings, allowing SERVPRO of West Knoxville/Farragut to monitor the drying process.
  3. Thermo hygrometers measure temperature and relative humidity.

When armed with this information, SERVPRO of West Knoxville/Farragut can calculate and create an environment most conducive to drying. When facing a contaminated water loss, it is not only important to dry the structure, but the structure must also be disinfected and often deodorized. Ultra-Low-Volume Foggers will atomize liquid deodorizing agents, producing a fine mist that can easily penetrate the site where odor-causing residues may accumulate. 
This device can also be used to inject fungicides and disinfectants into wall cavities and other hard-to-reach areas. Thermal Foggers dispense solvent-based products by creating a dense fog. The fog consists of tiny particles of deodorant solution that attached to and neutralize odor-causing particles.

Be Prepared This Summer

6/25/2018 (Permalink)

Grill Fire

Each year, families and friends across the country enjoy the summer months with barbecues, camping trips, or by cooling off in a pool or lake. To enjoy these occasions, it is important to keep safety top of the mind to ensure you have fun in the sun.

According to a recent study by U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, nearly 11,900 Americans were injured by fireworks in 2015., with the majority happening in the month surrounding the Fourth of July. Another 8,700 are injured by charcoal/wood-burning and propane grill fires. A grill should always be supervised when in use. Keep children and pets a safe distance from the grilling area to prevent accidental burns or tipping of the grill.

Grills also cause an average of 8,9000 home structure or outdoor fires. "These fires caused an annual average of 50 civilian injuries and $2 million in direct property damage," according to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA).

If you enjoy lounging by the pool or going for a boat ride to cool off from the summer sun, make sure you exercise caution, especially when children are present. Only swim in approved areas and supervise children at all times when near water.

The summer season should be time to make memories and enjoy the great outdoors. Don't become a statistic. Take precautions to prevent these events from putting a damper on your summer months!

You can be ruined or you can be ready

6/25/2018 (Permalink)

Technology can now be a vital tool in preparing for emergencies or disasters, as well as during or after to stay informed of the situation and in communication with others. From common technology you already use day-to-day basis to taking a few extra steps to prepare, the following will help you be ready in the event of a disaster.

Store Information Online
There are many places to store important information securely online. Services like Google Drive and Dropbox offer a free way to store different types of files, from a Word document to images of important documents. Ready.gov suggest saving an electronic version of insurance policies, identification documents, medical records and information about your pets, if necessary.

Follow The News
Stay informed by following agencies such as FEMA, local news channels, and local government on Twitter for the most up-to-date information in a disaster situation. You can also alert first responders if rescue is needed through Twitter.

Mark Yourself Safe
The American Red Cross offers a Safe & Well check-in site to list yourself as asafe or find family and firends in situations. where communication is difficult to estabish.

Facebook also has a feature called Safety CHeck that is activated after natural disasters or crisis. You will receive a notification from Facebook if you're located in an affected area at that time.

Get In Touch
Make sure your contact information is up-to-date in your phone and email for communication with your family, friends, business contacts and others whom you may need to get in contact with before, during, or after a disaster.

Charge Up
Keep a portable charger in your car and home in case of an emergency. You may need to recharge this from time to time, but you can also buy solar-powered chargers as well.

Get an Emergency READY Profile.

SERVPRO is proud to offer Emergency READY Profiles for free and ready.SERVPRO.com to help prepare you, your property, or your business for an emergency.

By developing a SERVPRO Emergency READY Profile for your property or business, you minimize business interruption by having an immediate plan of action. Knowing what to do and what to expect in advance is the key to timely mitigation and can help minimize how water and fire damage can affect your property or business.

Put help in the palm of your hand with the Ready Plan App. Get in touch with SERVPRO of West Knoxville/Farragut today for more information on developing and ERP for your property or business.

Contents, Belongings, and Restoration after Mold Damage

6/22/2018 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of West Knoxville/Farragut will clean your furniture, decorative items, curtains, and other restorable items affected by mold. They use a variety of cleaning techniques to clean and sanitize your belongings. We are also trained to remove odors and deodorize using fogging equipment.

Restoration

Depending on the level of mold damage, drywall, subfloors, and other building materials may be removed. Restoration may involve minor
repairs, such as replacing drywall, painting, and installing new carpet; or it may entail major repairs such as the reconstruction of various areas or rooms in a home.

SERVPRO of West Knoxville/Farragut understands mold and mold growth and have the training and equipment to remediate mold in your home. We are certified in mold remediation and can have your home ready to be moved back into without the worry of visible mold or black mold spores.

Winter Season is Here

6/19/2018 (Permalink)

The winter season is here and with it comes shorter days and lower
temperatures. No matter where you live, winter brings a change in the weather. Many people use alternative heat sources like
fireplaces, portable space heaters, and wood burning stoves to help keep homes cozy. Did you know, heating equipment is a leading cause of home fire deaths?
According to the National Fire Protection Association, heating equipment fires cause an estimated $1 billion in direct property damage annually. Keep the following safety tips in mind to help reduce your risk of a
heating-related fire.

Keep anything flammable at least three feet away from heating equipment, like the furnace, fireplace, wood stove, or a portable space heater. Have a three foot “kid-free zone” around open fires and space heaters.
Make sure the fireplace has a sturdy screen to stop sparks from flying into the room. Ashes should be cool before putting them in a metal container. Keep the container a safe distance away from your home.
Remember to turn portable heaters off when leaving the room or going to bed.
Test smoke alarms monthly.

Always use the right kind of fuel, specified by the manufacturer, for fuel burning space heaters.

Have heating equipment and chimneys cleaned and inspected every year by a qualified professional.

If your property does suffer fire damage, contact your local SERVPRO® Franchise Professionals to help make it “Like it never even happened.”

What to do when mold strikes.

6/11/2018 (Permalink)

Mold Damage In Farragut Home

When there’s a water intrusion, like a roof leak or leaking water line, mold can quickly become a problem in your home or business. Mold can cause health effects and can also cause significant damage to your property. Fortunately, SERVPRO of West Knoxville/Farragut has the training, protective gear, and specialized equipment necessary to handle your mold problem. Although every mold damage scenario is different requiring a unique solution, the general mold remediation process stays the same. The following steps illustrate a “typical” mold removal process.

Call the Team in Green

The mold cleanup and restoration process begins when you call SERVPRO of West Knoxville/Farragut. A representative will ask a series of questions to help determine the necessary equipment, resources, and personnel needed.

Inspection and Damage Assessment
Your property will be carefully inspected for signs of mold using technology designed to detect mold and hidden water sources. Mold feeds on cellulose and water and can be hidden from plain view.

Mold Containment
Various containment procedures will be placed to prevent the spread of mold and isolate the contaminated area with physical barriers and negative air pressure to keep the mold spores from spreading during the cleanup process.

Air Filtration
Specialized filtration equipment captures microscopic mold spores out of the air. SERVPRO® technicians utilize powerful air scrubbers and HEPA vacuums to prevent the spread of these mold spores while the mold remediation is in progress.

Removing Mold
The mold remediation process depends on the amount of mold growth and the types of surfaces on which the mold appears. Antifungal and antimicrobial treatments will be used to eliminate mold colonies and help prevent new colonies from forming. Removing and disposing of mold-infested porous materials, like drywall and flooring, may be necessary to remediate heavy mold growth.

Faster To Any Disaster

5/28/2018 (Permalink)

SERVPRO can fix it!

There is no disaster that hits home quite like a disaster to your property, home or business. When you have suffered a fire and water or mold damage, you don't have time to waste searching for a company to fix your property. When disaster strikes, depend on SERVPRO of West Knoxville to fix it.

Whether the job is big or small, SERVPRO of West Knoxville will be there to help make it "Like it never even happened." so you can get back to your home or business and on with your life.

SERVPRO of West Knoxville has experts who deal with mold mitigation and remediation process and what may take place if you are dealing with mold loss. As well as expertise in biohazard, crime scene, and vandalism cleanup. Whatever it maybe you can count on SERVPRO of West Knoxville.

Storm Season Is Here

5/23/2018 (Permalink)

Storm Damage

It may seem early but storm season is currently underway. The season begins June 1 and runs through November 30. The Eastern Pacific storm season began in mid-May and also ends November 30.

Storms can be life-threatening as well as cause serious property threatening hazards such as flooding, storm surge, high winds, and tornadoes. While the primary threat is in coastal areas. many inland areas can also be affected by these hazards, as well as by secondary events such as power outages as a result of high winds and landslides due to rainfall.

Preparation is the best protection against the dangers of a hurricane. Plan an evacuation route and your emergency plan, take inventory of your property, and take steps to protect your home and business. For more information and preparation tips, visit the Ready campaign website www.ready.gov

Hoarding: A Serious Situation

5/16/2018 (Permalink)

Hoarding

According to The Mayo Clinic,“Hoarding disorder is a persistent difficulty discarding or parting with possessions because of a perceived need to save them. A person with hoarding disorder experiences distresses at the thought of getting rid of the items. Excessive accumulation of
items, regardless of actual value, occurs.”

Many people with hoarding disorder do not find their habits to be a problem. Hoarded items are often things others would throw away or look
at as junk or garbage such as old newspapers, junk mail or packaging.
Hoarding can lead to homes filled with extreme clutter to full capacity
from years of accumulation, making living conditions unsanitary and
crowded. Bugs, fleas, rats and other vermin may be present, at which point an exterminator would need to be called. At times, hoarding may spread to outside the home as well, to storage facilities, or even the garage or yard. SERVPRO® of West Knoxville encounter hoarding situations in several different ways. Often, SERVPRO® of West Knoxville is called for a fire or water loss and find the hoarding situation when they arrive on-site. A

SERVPRO® of West Knoxville Professional will communicate with the insurance company regarding their contents coverage, and after approval, contents can be packed out and possibly cleaned, dried, and stored by the SERVPRO® of West Knoxville, or relocated to a storage facility so work on the fire or water loss can begin. Another way SERVPRO® of West Knoxville encounter hoarding jobs is through calls from landlords, caseworkers, real estate agents, or family members, often after the death of a loved one. In these situations, the crew will see if they should look for any items of importance while they clean the job. Sometimes, family members will
come and try to help the hoarder sort through their contents as well.

Each case is very different, and hoarding jobs are often sensitive situations, but SERVPRO® of West Knoxville Professionals are here to help make it “Like it never even happened.” If you encounter a hoarding situation at one of your properties, or with your insureds, call SERVPRO® of West Knoxville today

The Importance of Cleaning Dryer Vents

5/14/2018 (Permalink)

Clean your dryer vents

According to FEMA, failure to clean home dryers causes 34% of home dryer fires. Home dryer fires cause $35 million in property loss and can even cause injury or death. To reduce the risk of these fires happening in your home, SERVPRO® of West Knoxville can help clean dryer vents and ducts that may have lint buildup. Other tips for keeping your dryer vents clean from the National Fire Protection Agency include cleaning the lint filter before and after each load and making sure the outdoor vent flap will open and is not
restricted by snow, a bird’s nest, or other potential obstacles.
Our certified professionals will come out for a free estimated.For more information on cleaning dryer vents, contact
SERVPRO® of West Knoxville.

Improve Your Air Quality

5/2/2018 (Permalink)

HVAC Cleaning Knoxville

The ventilation system is often the biggest culprit in poor indoor air quality, but you can help change that! Inspecting the ductwork in your home should be a high priority. In most cases, the HVAC the system has been operating for some time without much attention. Dirty ducts can circulate odors, contaminants such as mold, and irritating dust throughout your home.

A routine part of SERVPRO® of West Knoxville’s
service is inspecting the heating, ventilation, and air conditioning unit (HVAC). Keeping the HVAC and ductwork clean can potentially extend the life-span of the equipment by allowing it to operate at peak condition, which may help save you money. Duct
cleaning may not always be necessary. SERVPRO® of West Knoxville will inspect your HVAC system and
ductwork and make recommendations about the best way to address any indoor air quality concerns. This inspection can help save you money and provide peace of mind on the health of your HVAC
system and ductwork.

In some circumstances, such as after a fire, smoke, or suspected mold growth, duct cleaning becomes an essential part of the cleanup process.
In these cases, SERVPRO® of West Knoxville can often restore the HVAC system and ductwork to pre-damage condition. If you have a fuel-burning furnace, stove, or fireplace, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recommends they be inspected for proper functioning and be serviced
before each heating season to protect against carbon monoxide poisoning.

The SERVPRO® of West Knoxville Duct Cleaning

The system is proven and cost-efficient. Unlike the majority of duct cleaning services, SERVPRO® of West Knoxville uses a portable ventilation and air duct cleaning system to examine ductwork and make a clean sweep, removing years of dust and grime.

  • The process begins by using
    patented equipment, including a
    roto-scraper, which automatically
    adapts to the duct’s shape and
    diameter while traveling through
    the duct, removing debris and filth
    before vacuuming begins.
  • Next, a powerful push-pull air
    delivery and collection system
    transfers the debris from the
    ducting to a 16-gallon container.
  • Air is filtered through a HEPA
    filtration system, removing 99.97
    percent of the particles in the
    airstream. HEPA filters capture
    debris and keep the indoor
    environment clean.
  • As an optional process, a sealant or
    coating product may be sprayed to
    address odor or microbial concerns.
    n Filters will either be cleaned
    or replaced to remove odor
    and dirt.

For more information on duct
cleaning or to schedule an appointment,
contact your local SERVPRO® of West Knoxville.

Busted Pipe In Knoxville Home

4/17/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage Knoxville

Water damage can happen at any time. Most of the time it is when you least expect it. Mr. Summner experienced this when he was away on vacation. A pipe burst in his ceiling, but it was not until two weeks later that a neighbor noticed the damage. The pipe had been leaking from an 18-foot ceiling. His first call was to SERVPRO of West Knoxville. Our highly trained professionals came out immediately to asses the damage. Since the pipe had been leaking for an extended period of time there was a lot of damage. 50% of the entire ceiling had to be torn out and replaced. All of the hardwood floors in the house had to be removed. The subfloor was either dried or removed. We were able to replace the flooring. All in all, over 5000 square feet of the house was damaged. Mr. Summner was extremely pleased with how quickly and professionally our team was.

Severe Weather Safety

4/4/2018 (Permalink)

Severe Weather Safety

Severe weather can happen any time, anywhere. Each year, Americans cope with an average of the following intense storms.

- 10,000 severe thunderstorms
-5,000 floods or flash floods
-1,300 tornadoes
-2 landfalling deadly hurricanes

Approximately 98 percent of all presidentially declared disasters are weather-related, leading to around 650 deaths per year and nearly $15 billion in damage. Knowing your risk severe weather, taking action, and being an example are just a few steps you can take to be better prepared to save your life and assist in saving the lives of others.

Know Your Risk. The first step to becoming weather-ready is to understand the type of hazardous weather that can affect where you live and work, and how the weather could impact you, your business, and your family. Check the weather forecast regularly, obtain an NOAA Weather Radio, and learn about Wireless Emergency Alerts. Severe weather comes in many forms and your shelter plan should include all types of local hazards.

Be an Example. Once you have taken action to prepare for severe weather, share your story with co-workers and family and friends on Facebook and Twitter Your preparedness story will inspire others to do the same.

Knoxville Water Damage

3/14/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage Knoxville Home

There are many homes in the Knoxville area that suffer from water damage. The first 24 hours following a water loss is the most important in
preventing secondary or permanent damage. Within four hours of loss notification, a SERVPRO® West Knoxville will be on-site to help ensure a water damage is handled by completing the following steps.

INSPECTION

SERVPRO® Of West Knoxville will inspect affected areas to determine the extent of water damage
and will review the inspection with you to answer any questions before beginning any work.

EMERGENCY SERVICES

SERVPRO® Of West Knoxville will take steps to help protect your home or business, as well as personal
belongings and other contents, from further damage by extracting the excess water and preparing the area for drying. They will explain the needed
emergency services to you step-by-step.

MONITORING

To help ensure your home or business and belongings are dried to appropriate industry standards, a SERVPRO® West Knoxville will monitor the drying process. The updates will be consistently communicated to you.

RESTORATION SERVICES

SERVPRO® West Knoxville will repair structural materials, reinstall carpets, and clean affected areas of your property and belongings. A final walkthrough of the job site will be conducted with you to help ensure the property was returned to preloss condition.

EMERGENCY WATER DAMAGE TIPS

Shut off the water source if possible or contact a qualified party to stop the water source. Turn off circuit breakers for wet areas of the building when access to the power distribution panel is safe from electrical shock. Remove as much excess water as
possible by mopping and blotting. Place aluminum foil or wood blocks of furniture legs and wet carpeting. Move any paintings, art objects,
computers, documents, and other sensitive valuables to a dry place. Don’t enter affected areas if electrical outlets, switches, circuit breakers, or electrical equipment are exposed to water. Always
avoid electrical shock hazards. Don’t use your household vacuum cleaner to remove water; this
could cause electrical shock or damage to the vacuum cleaner.
Don’t turn on ceiling fixtures if the ceiling is wet or enters rooms where ceilings are sagging from retained water.

For more information on
recovering from water damage,
contact your local SERVPRO®
West Knoxville

Benefits of Cleaning Your Air Ducts This Spring

2/27/2018 (Permalink)

With Spring comes fresh air and sunshine, and you will want to enjoy it as much as possible! Make sure your ventilation system is clean and free of dirt and dust so that your indoor air quality is springtime fresh!

Dirty ventilation systems are often the biggest culprit when it comes to poor indoor air quality. It might be a good idea to schedule an inspection of the ductwork in your home or business. If your HVAC has been operating for some time without any attention, some of the following materials could be circulating through your interior air space:  

  • Dust,
  • Pollen
  • Dirt and debris
  • Odors
  • Other contaminants

The benefits of cleaning out air ducts this Spring include: helping your unit(s) to run at peak efficiency, helping to eliminate offensive odors, and reducing the potential for any mold growth.

Some mold growth can even cause allergies to flare up in some people. These situations could be related to mold growth or poor air quality, and clean air ducts will prevent these types of issues. It can also be a great way to extend the life of your heating and cooling equipment, by lowering the amount of stress on your system.

If you are thinking that getting your air ducts cleaned might be a good idea, contact a professional. The company that you use to service your HVAC system might be a good source of information. There are companies in the West Knoxville area that professionally clean air duct systems, and SERVPRO of West Knoxville/Farragut is proud to be one of those companies! If you need assistance in getting your air ducts cleaned, please contact us today!

SERVPRO of West Knoxville/Farragut is here to help with water damage, fire damage, and mold prevention and remediation. You can contact us here at (865) 690 9658 or visit our website:

SERVPRO of West Knoxville/Farragut

THE EARLY WARNING SIGNS OF MOLD IN YOUR WEST KNOXVILLE HOME

2/21/2018 (Permalink)

We’ve all seen the sensational news reports warning us about the dangers of toxic mold, or “black mold”. These reports can be extremely alarming, so let’s get down to the facts so that we can better understand the issue, its dangers, and how to prevent it.

The scientific name for the mold that is often called black mold is Stachybotrys chartarum. It can produce both allergens and irritants. However, many other types of mold can produce those same allergens and irritants, so it’s best to treat any mold with caution. Do not touch or disturb any mold found, and be sure to stay out of affected areas.

Mold can affect the body negatively if not treated, and a minor mold problem can quickly grow into an infestation if left untreated. Our family-owned and operated team at SERVPRO of West Knoxville/Farragut are trained to handle any type of mold remediation and are available 24/7 to meet your mold remediation needs.

Mold spores are microscopic and are everywhere. They float in the air, so they are able to enter your home through windows and doors, or HVAC systems. When water intrudes into your property, mold growth can start in as little as 48 hours! Mold spores thrive on moisture and can quickly grow into colonies when exposed to damp conditions. It often produces a strong musty odor, so that very odor can lead you to areas in your home that could be a problem. Keeping the humidity level in your home below 45 percent can be a big help in blocking the growth of toxic mold in your house.

Many types of mold can cause adverse reactions, so you should contact us here at SERVPRO of West Knoxville/Farragut regardless of the color or type of mold found in your home. Many types of mold can exist in the same house or structure. Call us immediately at (865) 690 9658 if you suspect a toxic mold issue in your home, or visit us online at http://www.SERVPROwestknoxvillefarragut.com/ to learn more.

Preparing Your Home to Transition from Winter to Spring

2/13/2018 (Permalink)

There’s still snow on the ground here in West Knoxville, Tennessee, but there are also robins in the yard. And if you look closely you can see the tiny green spears of daffodils and crocuses peeking out. Spring is just around the corner! And we know you are ready for it. Is your home? Here are a few things to think about when it comes to the transition from cold winter weather to the warmth and sunshine of spring.

Rising temperatures mean melting snow and ice, and accumulated water can cause water damages to your property unless you are prepared.

First on your list should be your gutters. They can be full of dead leaves, small branches, and even dirt from the rough weather. Get those gutters cleaned out right away so the spring showers don’t cause mold problems and water damage to interior walls, because that can be a big issue. Make sure the downspouts are directing water the right way, as well. Tough West Knoxville winter weather could have caused them to change position.

How’s your roof faring? As the melting begins, keep an eye on it to see if any leaks have started due to storm damage over the past few weeks and months. Take a look at any vents to see if vegetation or mold has take hold, obstructing air flow.

The filters in your HVAC unit likely need to be changed, and you will want to clean out ducts, vents, and the system itself. Duct work can be hard to check, so you may need to contact West Knoxville professionals to come out and help.

Your windows have taken a beating, so you will want to inspect them for storm and water damage. Cracks, damaged weather stripping, improper fit; all these issues can cause problems down the road. Now is a great time to get them professionally cleaned and let that warmth and sunshine in!

Shovel any remaining snow 3 to 5 feet away from your foundations and keep an eye out for cracks caused by the harsh winter conditions. They can be caulked and sealed as soon as you notice them, and you’ll be ready for whatever comes.

You can check your hoses and sprinkler systems at this time and replace anything damaged by all the storms and the water from melting snow and ice. Uncover plants, and believe it or not, fertilize the lawn and garden!  

While you are inspecting your home, if you notice any severe storm damage, take pictures for insurance purposes, in case you need to file a claim.

And don’t forget to call us here at SERVPRO of West Knoxville/ Farragut for all your repairs and clean-up needs! We specialize in water and storm damage, fire damage, and mold prevention. You can contact us by phone at (865) 690 9658, or visit us on our website: SERVPRO West Knoxville/ Farragut



Is Your HVAC Unit Ready for Winter in West Knoxville?

2/6/2018 (Permalink)

Some of the harshest weather is still yet to come before springtime arrives. January and February are some of the toughest months to get through when it comes to snow, ice, and cold rains, and in some areas of the country, March can be pretty unpleasant, too!

You want to be ready for whatever comes and be able to keep your family, employees, and yourself warm and dry while the cold winds blow. Is your HVAC unit ready for an icy blast?

There’s still time to take care of that!

If there are any undone repairs on your HVAC, get them done now, since cold and snow will almost certainly make any standing issues worse. Double check that the system is working efficiently, and if it isn’t, call a licensed professional to come get things in working order.

Most HVAC units are located outside in the elements and have been covered with dirt, bugs, and debris after a long, hot, West Knoxville summer. Take some time and wash your unit off with a garden hose or damp cloth, ensuring that none of last season’s dirt creates any problems for you during this season’s cold and wet.

If you haven’t already had the filters changed, there’s still time to do so. If your heating consumption is pretty normal, then it’s suggested that filters are changed monthly, to keep your HVAC working well during peak usage times.

Another good idea is to test your thermostat to see how long it takes for your unit to bring the temperature up to where it is set. If it takes too long, a visit from a West Knoxville HVAC professional might be in order.

If you have separate heating and cooling units, cold weather is the perfect time to look at your air conditioner to make sure it’s ready for the heat that is just around the corner!

Here at SERVPRO of West Knoxville/ Farragut, we are always ready to come and help with any weather-related issues or concerns. Storm and water damage, fire damages, and mold prevention are just a few of our specialties! Call us today at (865) 690 9658 or visit our website:

SERVPRO West Knoxville/ Farragut

Safety Tips for Your West Knoxville Home Fireplace This Winter

1/30/2018 (Permalink)

A fireplace is a wonderful thing to have during the cold and wet winter months here in Knoxville. They lend a cozy ambience to any home, large or small, and the mantle of a fireplace is a great place to put holiday decorations, greeting cards, and pictures from holiday celebrations. But your fireplace needs to be properly maintained, as they can also be dangerous and serious fire damage hazard. Here are some helpful suggestions.

TIPS:

  • Have smoke and carbon monoxide alarms installed throughout the home and keep them in working order at all times.
  • Ensure that materials such as carpet, drapes, and furniture are kept away from the fireplace while it is in use. All of these materials are combustible and must be watched carefully to avoid fire damage to your home. Use a firescreen to keep children and pets away from the flames and to make sure that sparks are not projected near anything that could catch fire.
  • Keep the ash accumulation under control, cleaning it out when it reaches the bottom of the grate. This can impede air flow and also make building your fire more difficult. When removing ash, it’s a good idea to wear a dust mask and gloves.
  • A certified sweep in the Knoxville area can inspect and clean your wood-burning fireplace and chimney; once a year or more can keep you and your family safe. The Chimney Safety of America maintains a list of approximate 1500 chimney professionals that actively care the Certified Chimney Sweep credentials. They can be contacted in 49 of the 50 states.
  • A good way to test the safety of your fireplace is by lighting a few small pieces of seasoned wood. If the smoke doesn’t exit up into the chimney but goes out into the room, immediately troubleshoot and correct any problems. These can include: creosote or soot buildup, debris in the chimney such as bird or animal nests, a closed or partially closed damper, or even wood that is damp; all of which can pose serious fire hazards and risk fire damage.
  • Make sure you burn only seasoned wood. This is wood that has been cut and dried under cover for 6 -12 months. Green wood does not burn as thoroughly and creates more soot and creosote buildup, creating problems with your fireplace. Hardwoods, such as oak, ash, and maple are dense and heavy, delivering more heat than lighter softwoods, such as pine, poplar, and cedar; you should have no problems finding these woods from a plethora of different sources in the Knoxville area.  




These simple tips can keep your fireplace safe and in working order all winter long. And remember to call SERVPRO of West Knoxville/ Farragut at (865) 690-9658 or visit http://www.SERVPROwestknoxvillefarragut.com/ if you need any help with water damage, fire damage, or mold cleanup around your home or office this chilly winter season!

Deep Cleaning Your Mattress for a Mold-Free Bedroom

1/23/2018 (Permalink)

During the winter months here in Knoxville, we spend a lot of time indoors. It can be a good time to take care of some of those chores we forget about during good weather to help keep your home clean and mold-free.

TIME ON YOUR HANDS

Baseboards, floors, and windows can use some attention, or maybe you’ll want to empty out some closets (dark corners of a closet can harbor some serious mold growth that is difficult to detect.) Doing a bit of deep cleaning might be a good way to spend a cold day in the Knoxville area indoors, and a deep-cleaning truly wouldn’t be complete without giving your mattress some serious attention. It’s also a great way to get a good night’s sleep!

There is no need for harsh chemicals when cleaning your mattress; believe it or not, all you need is a box of baking soda for this project! You can add essential oils to the compound and gently scent your bed to enhance your sleep with their quiet, peaceful aromas.

WHAT YOU’LL NEED:

  • 16 ounce box of baking soda
  • Essential oil in your favorite scent
  • Vacuum cleaner

WHAT YOU’LL DO:

To begin, flip or rotate the bed, which is a good idea to do every six months anyway - it prevents sagging and extends the life of your mattress. While you are cleaning the mattress, make sure you wash all bedding and fluff your duvet or feather bed/comforter in the dryer.

Opening the box of baking soda, add 10 to 20 drops of your favorite essential oil (lavender, sandalwood, chamomile, or ylang ylang can be good choices). Close the box, shaking well to distribute the oil and break up any clumps. By the way, did you know that essential oils are natural antibacterials?

Sprinkle the mixture over the bed, and use the entire box. Rub the mixture into the mattress and leave it on for at least an hour. While the magic is happening, take this time to wipe down the walls, bed frame and floor, and check the floorboards and corners for possible moisture and mold growth. After at least an hour has passed, you can vacuum your mattress, working slowly to make sure all the powder is removed.

VOILA!

This mixture lifts dirt and residue, while wicking away moisture, which improves the air quality in your bedroom and helps keep it mold free, and giving your mattress a good vacuuming gets rid of dust mites, which is always an aid to better sleep! Make up your bed again with your clean sheets, blankets, and pillow covers and top off with your fluffed duvet or comforter! Add your toss pillows, and voila!

Hopefully these tips will lead to a cleaner, more inviting bedroom for you! And remember to call SERVPRO of West Knoxville/ Farragut at (865) 690-9658 or visit http://www.SERVPROwestknoxvillefarragut.com/ if you need any help with water damage, fire damage, or mold cleanup around your home or office.

Prioritizing Commercial Cleaning During the Winter in Knoxville

1/17/2018 (Permalink)

Keep your Knoxville business clean during the winter months and your customers and employees will thank you!

THE WEATHER OUTSIDE IS FRIGHTFUL

The winter months pose challenges to keeping your Knoxville business clean and dry. Snow and ice from winter storms affect floors, windows, parking areas, and roofs, while the cold and sickness affect how your staff feels and can slow down their ability to be productive.

LET THE SUNSHINE IN

You may be tempted to skip window washing services during the winter due to those frequent storms in the Knoxville area, but the aftermath of those storms is the very reason you need to keep them clean. Dirty windows are cloudy, reducing the amount of sunlight allowed into the office and customer spaces, while less passive heat will make it inside when exterior windows are not clear. Natural light boosts the moods of both your employees and customers and promotes healthy productivity and activity levels, while any passive warmth your business receives will lower heating costs. A boost of bright sunlight from the windows can breathe new life into your workspaces during those gloomy winter months, and that's not all! Sunlight also helps to dry any slick, wet floors and helps to keep excess moisture under control. Maintaining the cleanliness of your windows during the winter months will lighten the mood and make a good impression on your customers.

KEEPING THE TEAM HEALTHY AND HAPPY

Spread by viruses, flu and the common cold run rampant during the winter months. Cleaning and disinfecting your office equipment regularly, especially those handled routinely by your staff, such as phones and keyboards, countertops, tables, doorknobs and public areas, is vital to preventing the spread of germs. Commercial cleaning services can get the job done for you with eco-friendly products that will leave your office smelling fresh and clean while alleviating concerns about noxious chemicals lingering in the office atmosphere. Keeping viral and bacterial germs under control prevents sickness and reduces the loss of productivity due to employee absences.

A BIT OF GREEN

An office here in Knoxville can get stuffy and suffer from air quality issues during the winter while the windows and doors remain closed, but the problem can be handled by installing an air cleaner and adding plants to the office. Research done by NASA in 1989 showed that houseplants remove toxins from the air, keeping it fresh and healthful. Many plants thrive in the low-light conditions common in offices, and placing live green plants in work areas, customer areas and break rooms brings a touch of nature inside, helping to lighten the mood while also preventing poor air quality.



AVOID MISHAPS,

Wet, dirty floors can pose safety hazards for both your customers and your staff. Having your bare floors mopped and carpets vacuumed on a regular basis will help to avoid mishaps. Not only does it prevent people from slipping and falling on floors that may be wet or dirty, but it also keeps air moisture levels down, which can help greatly prevent mold growth! While your own office team may need to mop customer areas frequently throughout the day to prevent any safety issues, a cleaning service here in Knoxville can shampoo carpets or polish floors after business hours. They can also share best practices with you on how to keep your floors hazard-free and looking good during the day.


Keeping your business clean could be the best New Year’s resolution you will make! We here at SERVPRO of West Knoxville/ Farragut are here to help with all of your commercial cleaning, water damage, fire damage, and mold clean up needs in 2018. Give us a call at (865) 690-9658 or visit http://www.SERVPROwestknoxvillefarragut.com/ and let us help you get off to a great, clean start this 2018!

Is Your Knoxville Business "Winter Storm" Ready?

1/17/2018 (Permalink)

When winter storms hit our Knoxville communities, we are ready to answer the call for any storm damage!

When it comes to bad weather and storm damage, January and February can be two of the most challenging months to handle here in Knoxville. You could be facing winter storms with snow, sleet, and freezing rain, or an ice storm, with build ups of over ¼ inches of ice. Another unfortunate side effect of this weather can be freezing and bursting pipes. Blizzard winds of over 35 mph can wreak havoc on your home or business and even be life-threatening. Are you ready for this storm damage and water damage potential?

INSPECTION TIME

Start by inspecting your Knoxville building and its premises so that you, your equipment, and your employees are protected. Look for leaks in the roof or walls, cracks near doors and windows, or loose trim that can blow off and injure someone. These issues could also lead to serious water damage hazards for your business. Submit any work requests to your landlord right away so that these problems can be solved immediately.

INSURANCE AND MAINTENANCE

Check your building maintenance agreement to see what processes are in place to handle snow and ice removal. Safe entry and exit to your place of business is extremely important during bad weather to keep people safe and accident-free. Make sure you are well-informed when it comes to your business’s insurance coverage. The coverage should cover any storm and water damages or injuries that could happen during a storm or its aftermath in the Knoxville area. Upgrade if necessary.

EMERGENCY CONTACTS

Compile a list of phone numbers needed during an emergency, such as police and fire department, your landlord, insurance company, plumbers, and snow removal services, or the utility companies in case of a power outage, and, of course, your friends at SERVPRO of West Knoxville/ Farragut. Ensure that this list is easily accessible to anyone who will be in your building and store it in the cloud in case you lose computers.

GENERATOR?

Do you have a backup generator? It might a good time to buy one, just in case.

PLAN AHEAD

During a storm, people may not be able to get into work, or they may not be able to return home. Think through as many possible scenarios as you can and have a plan to handle each one. Do you need to stock up on food and blankets? Is your office equipped with flashlights, batteries, and a first aid kit? Does one of your employees have a four-wheel drive vehicle that could be used to help in an emergency? Make sure you have a plan when it comes to communication methods to employees, vendors, and emergency teams. If power is out, do you have a way to keep cell phones charged, for example? Posts on your social media accounts to let everyone know of emergency closures, etc. would be a good idea. Assign that task to someone who you know is reliable and a good communicator. If your business can be run from a remote location, ensure that employees know what would need to be done should they have to work from home for a time. Have a chain of command in place so that information gets to everyone who needs it.


Clearly, there is a lot to think about when it comes to winter weather and all the challenges that weather poses. Have a plan in place before the winter winds start to howl, and be safe! And remember to call SERVPRO of West Knoxville/ Farragut at (865) 690-9658 or visit http://www.SERVPROwestknoxvillefarragut.com/ if you need any help with water damage, fire damage, or mold cleanup!

Clean Up Any Size Disaster

11/2/2017 (Permalink)

Mitigation requires quick action. The faster a SERVPRO® Franchise Professional arrives on-site to perform fire, smoke, and soot cleanup and restoration, the better the results—including lower claim costs.
Within four hours of loss notification, a SERVPRO® Franchise Professional will be on-site to help ensure a fire damage is handled by utilizing the following services.
Structural Cleaning
After a smoke or fire damage, ceilings, walls, woodwork, carpeting, and flooors will often need a thorough cleaning. Your experienced local SERVPRO® Franchise Professional will pretest to determine the extent of damage, then use
the specific equipment and cleaning products required to clean and protect the different types of surfaces found in your insured’s structure.
Contents Cleaning
All of the restorable contents in affected areas will be professionally cleaned and deodorized. is includes area rugs, furniture, draperies, and upholstery. SERVPRO® Franchise Professionals can provide wet or dry cleaning services. Additionally, all the other restorable contents will be cleaned and deodorized to preloss condition. is includes electronics, art, wood furniture, kitchen items, clothing, bedding,
and much more. Finally, SERVPRO® Franchise Professionals can provide an inventory list of all “to be claimed” items for your insured.
Deodorization
SERVPRO® Franchise Professionals provide specialized services that rid your insured’s home or place of business of offensive odors left by fire or smoke damage. SERVPRO® Franchise Professionals do not merely cover up lingering odors with a fragrance; they seek out the sources of the odor and remove them.

Be Disaster Aware Take Action To Prepare

11/2/2017 (Permalink)

The regular occurrence of natural disasters demonstrates the importance of being prepared for any emergency or disaster. While each situation is unique, your family can be better prepared if you plan carefully, put emergency procedures in place, and practice for all kinds of emergencies.

The following are measures you and your family can take to start getting ready. A commitment to begin planning today will help support your family, home, and the community. Review the following questions to learn if your family and home are prepared.

Be Informed
Do you know what kind of emergencies might affect your home or daily life? Do you know what you and your family will do in an emergency situation?
Prepare Your Emergency Plan
Do you have an evacuation and shelter-in-place plan? Do you have a plan to communicate with your family before, during, and after an incident? Do you have an emergency supply kit?

Practice the Emergency Plan
Have you practiced your plan recently? Does your family know where to go in the event of a natural disaster? Have you reviewed your plans in the last 12 months?

Review Insurance Coverage
Have you reviewed your insurance coverage recently to see if you’re covered in a disaster?
Secure Your Home
Have you conducted a room-by-room walk-through to determine what safety measures can be taken?
Improve Cyber Security
Have you installed a firewall on your computer? Do you regularly update your antivirus software?
If you answered “No” to any of these questions, visit ready.gov and learn how to better prepare your family and home for an emergency or natural disaster.

Answering the Call

9/26/2017 (Permalink)

Hurricane Harvey Storm Damage

When Hurricane Harvey left his wake of destruction in Texas the Emergency Response Team from SERVPRO of West Knoxville/Farragut answered the call sending teams to Kingwood, Texas. Taking supplies and equipment our teams went down to help the residents and were humbled by the generosity of a community that didn’t have any clue how they were going to recover financially, much less emotionally from the impact of the storm. Rescuees were evacuated by boats from their homes and neighborhoods, leaving everything behind, but the spirit of giving and resilience impacted the teams from Knoxville.

The long-standing relationship between SERVPRO and the insurance companies helped our teams make a big impact and quickly. The insurance adjusters were recommending people call SERVPRO because it was a name that they could trust. Our teams were able to start water mitigation quickly and come alongside homeowners and other countless volunteers to help these families begin to get some semblance of recovery started.

Imagine your home with six to eight feet of standing water with the rescue boat pulling up outside and telling you it was the last call. Our team was humbled time and time again meeting over a hundred different families that had met that fate and yet met our team with smiles on their faces. Unanimously our team was impacted by Texas Strong, and have spoken so highly of these families since their return.

“We are humbled and we are changed by so many families and their generosity, not only with their resources but their encouragement and their prayers”, said Nathan Lloyd, our Business Development Manager.

SERVPRO of West Knoxville, are professionals at serving you. That is why we are here, and that is what we do.

Ready for whatever happens.

9/12/2017 (Permalink)

Ready for whatever happens.

When a storm or disaster strikes, SERVPRO’s Disaster Recovery Team is poised and “Ready for whatever happens.” With a network of more than 1,700 franchise, the SERVPRO System strives to be faster to any size disaster. Strategically located throughout the United States, SERVPRO’s Disaster Recovery Team, is trained and equipped to handle the largest storms.

2016 Houston, TX Flooding: In April, a nearly stationary mesoscale convective system developed over Houston resulting in widespread rainfall at the rate of 2.4 inches per hour. This was a historic flooding event for Harris County which saw a total of nearly 18 inches of accumulated rainfall. The Storm Team dispatched 81 crews to over 360 jobs mitigating over $3 million in damages.

2015 Siberian Express: Record sub-zero temperatures caused major problems for a large portion of the county stretching from Florida to Maine. The Midwest also experienced record breaking low temperature resulting in frozen pipes and ice dams causing major problems for residents. The Storm Team dispatched a total of 257 crews from 108 Franchises to assist local SERVPRO Franchises completing 2000 jobs.

2014 Mid-Atlantic Flooding: Rainfall rates of up to 2 inches per hour caused major flash flooding stretching from Northeast Ohio all the way up to Portland, Maine. Eastern Michigan and Baltimore, Maryland were also impacted and 173 crews mitigated over $4.3 million in damages while assisting the local Franchises.

2014 Polar Vortex: Record low temperatures caused by a break in the North Pole’s polar vortex resulted in an unprecedented freezing event, spanning from east of the Rocky Mountains to as far south as Central Florida, affecting all or part of 39 states and 70% of the SERVPRO Franchises System.

2013 Colorado Floods: Heavy rainfall, with amounts up 17 inches in some areas, resulted in widespread flooding in the Fort Collins, Boulder and surrounding Colorado mountain communities, The Disaster Recovery Team responded with 109 crews from Franchises to assist the local SERVPRO Franchises in the emergency response

2012 Hurricane Sandy: Affecting more than 20 states, Sandy left widespread damage and flooding from Florida stretching the entire eastern seaboard to Maine, The Disaster Recovery Team placed nearly 1000 crews in the affected areas, representing over 300 SERVPRO Franchises from across the country. Teams traveled from as far as Arizona, California, Oregon, and Washington.

Be Storm Smart

9/12/2017 (Permalink)

Storm Damage

Be Storm Smart

Severe weather can happen anytime, anywhere. Each year, Americans cope with an average of these following intense storms.

10,000 severe thunderstorms

5,000 floods or flash floods

1,000 tornadoes

2 land falling deadly hurricanes

Approximately 98 percent of all presidentially declared disasters are weather-related, leading to around 500 deaths per year and nearly $15 billion in damage. Knowing your risk of severe weather, taking action and being an example are just a few steps you can take to be better prepared to save your life and assist in saving the lives others.

Know Your Risk. The first step to becoming weather-ready is to understand the type of hazardous weather that can affect where you live and work, and how the weather could impact you, your business and your family. Check the weather forecast regularly, obtain a NOAA Weather Radio, and learn about Wireless Emergency Alerts. Severe weather comes in many forms and your shelter plan should include all types of local hazards.

Take Action. Take the next step in severe weather preparedness by creating a communications plan for your home and business. Put together or purchase an emergency kit. Keep important papers and valuables in a safe place.

Be an Example. Once you have taken action to prepare for severe weather, share your story with co-works and family and friends on Facebook or Twitter. Your preparedness story will inspire others to do the same.

Build An Emergency Supply Kit

Water (one gallon per person per day)

Food (non-perishable 3-day supply)

Manual can opener

Battery operated radio, preferably a NOAA Weather Radio

Flashlight and extra batteries

First aid kit

Whistle to signal for help

Clothing

Dust masks or bandanas

Plastic sheeting, garbage bags, and duct tape

Wrench or pliers to turn off utilities

Hygiene items

Important documents; copies of insurance policies, identification, and bank account information

Cash

Fire extinguisher

Matches in a waterproof contain

KNOXVILLE'S FASTEST CLEANUP TEAM

9/12/2017 (Permalink)

SERVPRO Of West Knoxville

KNOXVILLE'S FASTEST CLEANUP TEAM

There is no such thing as a small disaster-especially when the water you do not see contains bacteria or can cause mold, rot and other unforeseen damage. Water damage can affect the value of your property. Before you try to clean and dry it up yourself, consider how the damage can affect your property.

SERVPRO of West Knoxville/Concord knows how disruptive water damage can be for your home and business. We at SERVPRO of West Knoxville/Concord are trained and equipped to manage the drying process of any size water loss. By utilizing the proper equipment and moisture measuring devices, you home or business will be quickly and thoroughly dried helping to prevent secondary water damage. With rapid response time and a full line of water cleanup and restoration services, SERVPRO of West Knoxville/Concord can help you regain control quickly, ensuring your facility and its contents are properly dried, deodorized and protected.

Before you risk further damaging the value of your facility by attempting to clean up the mess yourself, call your local SERVPRO of West Knoxville/Concord the water damage cleanup and restoration professionals.

USE A SERVPRO PROFESSIONAL WHEN WATER DAMAGE HITS YOUR HOME

8/22/2017 (Permalink)

Water Damage Knoxville

Imagine coming home from work to a flooded home, thanks to a faulty mechanism in your washing machine. You are ready to pull your hair out! You know you need help now because those hardwood floors will absorb a lot of water, as will the lower portion of your walls. If left untreated, water damage can lead to mold and mildew problems, as well as cause structural weakness to the damaged areas.
 
Trying to repair the water damage yourself to your Knoxville home may end up making the problem even worse. Our professional techs at SERVPRO know all too well the damages water can do to your home. We have all the equipment needed to dry your walls and floors before that damage becomes permanent.
 
We also know that problems can happen anytime - day or night; this is the reason we offer our customers 24-Hour Emergency Services. We understand you need immediate professional help after your home is flooded.
 
SERVPRO is a locally owned and operated business with professionally trained technicians. Our techs are skilled in water restoration, mold remediation, carpet, and furniture cleaning as well as any other cleaning that may be needed. We know how to assess the problem and get the job done quickly and efficiently.

Our techs have all the knowledge, experience, and tools they need to restore your property correctly. We use four factors to help determine how long it will take to dry your home:
 
* Temperature: needs to be kept between 70 and 90 degrees.
 
* Humidity: ideally between 30% and 60%.
 
* Extraction of water: the more that can be removed, the better.
 
* Air Movement: need to steadily move wet air away from wet surfaces.
 
We finish each job by providing our customers with documents proving the property is restored to its preloss condition. SERVPRO works with you and your insurance company, providing you with any paperwork you need to process your claim. 

No matter what time of day or night, when an emergency happens, you can trust SERVPRO to respond to your water removal needs quickly. It's nice to know that someone has your back when a crisis strikes.
 
 
C

How to prevent Electronics from causing extreme water damage

8/22/2017 (Permalink)

Water Damage Knoxville

Water damage can occur for many different reasons. Sometimes, it happens as the result of a flood due to heavy rains. Other times, it may be due to an inside flood, such as when a pipe or a water heater bursts. Whatever the case may be, if you are dealing with water damage or water-damaged electronics, appliances, or other devices, you need to proceed with extreme caution. The best thing you can do, after water damage has occurred, is to call on Nashville professionals who are familiar with dealing with such damage, such as our skilled pros at SERVPRO of West Knoxville. In the meantime, make sure you practice some good safety tips with the water damaged devices.

First things first, before you start thinking about possible water damage restoration, you need to make sure that you are not in immediate danger and that the devices that you own are not going to cause a fire or another serious incident.

After water damage has occurred, check your home to see if you have any damaged devices plugged in. If you find that you do, shut off the electricity at the breaker level. This will keep damaged devices from being able to start a fire. You should not touch, go near, or inspect any devices that are plugged in until you are certain that the electricity is off. Following this important tip will help you to avoid electric shock.

Believe it or not, it is not only plugged in water damaged electronics that pose a risk. Any device that contains a battery can also pose a serious risk. Thus, it's best to let our pros at SERVPRO of West Knoxville handle any such devices if you think they may have been damaged. At the very least, before touching any battery operated device, ensure that it is not giving off heat or smoke, bulging, melting, or making strange sounds. All these types of things are major warning signs that something serious and potentially dangerous is wrong with the battery!


As you can see, you're not always in the clear once the water subsides! To keep safe, contact the experts at SERVPRO of West Knoxville before you do anything. At the very least, follow these simple tips to keep yourself and your loved ones safe.

How to Minimize Fire Damage

8/22/2017 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Knoxville

How to Minimize Fire Damage

Minimizing further fire damage is one of the first considerations after a fire in a home or a fire in a business. Commercial fire damage can greatly affect the ability of a business to continue operations. In order to recover as much value as possible from a property that has undergone fire damage, smoke damage, and soot damage, a restoration company should be contacted immediately after the premises are secure. The fire cleanup team can aid in evaluating the damage to the property and listing the items that are present. They can also perform fire damage restoration and offer an estimate onsite.

A restoration company will also be instrumental in boarding up a property if commercial fire damage has compromised any doors or windows. Roofs and walls that may have been cut into by firefighters during the fire may also need to be boarded up. This process can be much more difficult than it originally appears due to the need to evaluate the structural integrity of much of the buildings foundation. A professional contractor should be contacted before an individual attempts to board up his or her own property after a fire in a home or a fire in a business. Boarding up a property that has undergone fire damage is important both to prevent the collapse of the building as well as to protect it from any intruders who may cause additional damage.

The fire cleanup will also involve drying up all the water that firefighters may flood the premises with in order to put out the fire. This water can cause extensive water damage as well as promote the growth of mold. A certified technician can employ all manner of techniques to dry out the property and prevent mold growth using industrial equipment that may include a water extractor, a dehumidifier, and an air current mover. This process will also somewhat remove the smoke smell that may persist after a fire.

After a list of personal belongings have been identified and list along with the property owner, a restoration company can work with him or her to reverse the smoke damage and soot damage that may have settled into the property. Surfaces can often be fully cleaned, even if it is porous like carpet. Deep vacuuming and steam injection are often successful in removing the oily soot that may lead to residual smoke smell. Fire damage restoration requires techniques that require specialized equipment, and these techniques can be discussed with the property owner in order to decide whether or not to proceed with restoration.

If fire damage restoration is not possible on certain items, they may be more easily replaced. In this case, the restoration company will also help to dispose of these items in the appropriate manner. After a fire in a home or a fire in a business, much debris will need to remove anyway. Smoke damage and soot damage is reversible, but property owners sometimes choose to replace items and surfaces instead.

All surfaces are sanitized and cleaned after all soot damage and smoke damage has been reversed. The fire clean up team will also instruct property owners on how to prevent commercial fire damage in the future. Any residual smoke smell will be ventilated until gone. If the smoke smell persists, chemical solutions like an ozone treatment or thermal fogging are also options depending on the needs of the property owner. Additional treatments may be needed weeks or even months after the initial incident.

Fire cleanup is extremely daunting for an individual who is shocked by a fire in a home or a fire in a business. However, fire damage restoration is normal for a fire cleanup specialist, even after extension commercial fire damage. A specialist who has the experience and the expertise to guide a property owner will ensure that fire damage is minimized as much as possible. 

Choose the right professional for fire damage

8/22/2017 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Knoxville

In the wake of a residential fire, the primary focus is on repairing the damage done to the inside of the house. However, moderate to severe incidents can lead to visible marks and blemishes on the outside of the building too. It is why SERVPRO conducts a full inspection of fire-damaged properties before we start any restoration work. 

The good news is that stains on masonry, concrete and other structural materials are almost always superficial. While brick and concrete are not impervious to fire damage in Knoxville homes, they are extremely sturdy and don’t succumb easily to heat. It means that, in most cases, we can use straightforward cleaning techniques to restore the outside of the property. 

Light Stains 

If there is no structural damage to the masonry, the SERVPRO technicians use mild cleaning agents to wash soot and smoke deposits from the surface. Where the staining is very light, dry sponging is enough to wipe away grime on block, brick, and concrete. Stubborn marks get lifted with alkaline detergents and direct scrubbing. Sodium hypochlorite is highly effective when it comes to soot removal, and it leaves no residues. 

Moderate Stains 

The difficult thing about soot is that it can be highly acidic. If it is not removed quickly, particularly from structural materials, there is a chance of corrosive residues becoming embedded deeper and deeper into the masonry. It is why SERVPRO pays close attention to cracked joints. 

They are delicately cleaned and repointed to dislodge any soot deposits which may be trying to move into the capillaries. Once this is complete, larger areas are dry sponged and vacuumed. Then, they are jet washed with a high powered pressure cleaning device. 

Heavy Stains 

The most severe staining occurs when heavily combustible materials have caught fire and burned for some time. In some cases, jet washing is still a suitable method of cleaning. We can add soot dissolving formulas like high PH degreasers, dry ice, or soda ash to increase optimal results. 

SERVPRO rarely recommends sand blasting for brick, block, and concrete because it is a very abrasive process and can cause additional damage. If there are smaller patches of masonry which are heavily soiled, the technicians may apply a poultice (sodium hypochlorite and diatomaceous earth). It takes 24-48 hours for the formula to take effect. 

The great thing about a fire damage restoration company like SERVPRO is that we offer a complete package. We are part of a huge network of contractors, so there is no repair job too big for our team to handle. 

NADCA FAQs

8/22/2017 (Permalink)

NADCA had some fantastic frequently asked questions so I had to share...

Are there any health benefits that come from HVAC system cleaning?

Heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems have been shown to collection a variety of contaminants such as mold, fungi, bacteria and very small particles of dust that have the potential to affect overall health, The removal of such contaminants from the HVAC system and home should be considered one component in an overall plan to improve indoor air quality.

How can I determine if the HVAC system cleaning was effective?

The best way to determine if the HVAC system cleaning was effective is to perform a visual inspection of the system before and after cleaning. If any dust or debris can be seen during the visual inspection, the system should not be considered cleaned. While you can perform your own visual inspection using a flashlight and mirror, a professional cleaning contractor should be able to allow you better access to system components and perhaps the use of specialized inspection tools. In addition, following the Residential Cleaning Checklist can help to ensure a top quality job.

How often should residential HVAC systems be cleaned?

Frequency of cleaning depends on several factors, not the least of which is the preference of the homeowner. Some of the things that may lead a homeowner to consider more frequent cleaning include:

  • smokers in the household
  • pets that shed high amounts of hair and dander
  • water contamination or damage to the home or HVAC system
  • residents with allergies or asthma who might benefit from a reduction in the amount of indoor air pollutants in the home’s HVAC system
  • after home renovations or remodeling
  • prior to occupancy of a new home.

How should a residential HVAC system be cleaned?

The most effective way to clean air ducts and ventilation systems is to employ source removal methods of cleaning. This requires a contractor to place the system under negative pressure, through the use of a specialized, powerful vacuum. While the vacuum draws air through the system, devices are inserted into the ducts to dislodge any debris that might be stuck to interior surfaces. The debris can then travel down the ducts to the vacuum, which removes it from the system and the home.

What are antimicrobial chemicals and why would they need to be used?

Antimicrobial chemicals are applied by some companies to the interior surface of the air ducts to treat microbial contamination such as fungi (mold), viruses or bacteria. Before any antimicrobial chemicals are used, the system should be thoroughly cleaned. It is critical that any antimicrobial treatment used in your system be registered by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency specifically for use in HVAC systems. The use of antimicrobial chemicals is an additional service that is not part of a typical air duct cleaning project. Review the NADCA White Paper on Chemical Applications in HVAC Systems for more information. 

What criteria should I use when selecting an HVAC system cleaning contractor?

You should interview as many local contractors as possible. Ask them to come to your home and perform a system inspection and give you a quote. To narrow down your pool of potential contractors, use the following pre-qualifications:

  • Make sure the company is a member in good standing of NADCA.
  • See if the company has been in business long enough to have adequate experience.
  • Get proof that the company is properly licensed and adequately insured.
  • Verify that the company is certified by NADCA to perform HVAC system cleaning.
  • Make sure that the company is going to clean and visually inspect all of the air ducts and related system components.
  • Avoid advertisements for “$99 whole house specials” and other sales gimmicks.
  • Ask if the company has the right equipment to effectively perform cleaning and if the company has done work in homes similar to yours.
  • Get references from neighbors if possible.

You can also use the Residential Cleaning Checklist as part of the contractor selection process. 

What is the normal price range for the air duct cleaning service?

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency says that “duct cleaning services typically – but not always – range in cost from $450 to $1,000 per heating and cooling system, depending on the services offered, the size of the system to be cleaned, system accessibility, climactic region and level of contamination” and type of duct material. Consumers should beware of air duct cleaning companies that make sweeping claims about the health benefits of duct cleaning, as such claims are unsubstantiated.

Consumers should also beware of “blow-and-go” air duct cleaning companies. These companies often charge a nominal fee and do a poor job of cleaning the heating and cooling system. These companies may also persuade the consumer to pay for unneeded services with and/or without their permission. (If you have knowledge of a practicing “blow-and-go” air duct cleaner, contact your local Better Business Bureau to report the company, and your local, federal and state elected officials to demand legislation.)

What kind of equipment is best for cleaning - truck mounted vacuums or portable vacuums?

NADCA does not endorse one kind of equipment over another. There are two main types of vacuum collection devices: (1) those mounted on trucks and trailers, and (2) portable units. Truck/trailer mounted equipment is generally more powerful than portable equipment. However, portable equipment can often be brought directly into a facility, allowing the vacuum source to be located closer to the ductwork. Both types of equipment will clean to ACR, the NADCA standard. All vacuum units should be attached to a collection device for safe containment prior to disposal. Any vacuum collection device which exhausts indoors must be HEPA filtered. A vacuum collection device alone will not get an HVAC system clean. The use of methods and tools designed to agitate debris adhered to the surfaces within the system, in conjunction with the use of the vacuum collection device(s), is required to clean HVAC systems. (For example: brushes, air whips and “skipper balls.”)

Why should I choose a NADCA member to have my air ducts cleaned?

NADCA members have signed a Code of Ethics stating they will do everything possible to protect the consumer and follow ACR, the NADCA Standard, for cleaning to the best of their ability. Find a NADCA professional near you. Air duct cleaning companies must meet strict requirements to become a NADCA member. Among those requirements, all NADCA members must have a certified Air System Cleaning Specialist (ASCS) on staff who has taken and passed the NADCA certification examination. Passing the exam demonstrates extensive knowledge in HVAC design and cleaning methodologies. ASCSs are also required to further their industry education by attending seminars in order to maintain their NADCA certification status. View the NADCA Code of Ethics.

Will HVAC system cleaning reduce our home energy bills?

Research by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has demonstrated that HVAC system cleaning may allow systems to run more efficiently by removing debris from sensitive mechanical components. Clean, efficient systems are less likely to break down, have a longer life span and generally operate more effectively than dirty systems.

Courtesy of nadca.com

Knoxville Companies Look To SERVPRO Technicians For Water Damage Solutions

8/22/2017 (Permalink)

Commercial Water Damage

Knoxville Companies Look To SERVPRO Technicians For Water Damage Solutions

Hotels experience various types of water damage, including; plumbing leaks, malfunctioning fixtures, or storm damage that allows water to enter unprotected areas quite often and need professional assistance to help them recover fast. 
 
When your building is affected by these kinds of water damage incidents in Knoxville, it may be comforting to know that someone trustworthy is available to provide you with the services you need to keep your business running. 
 
SERVPRO technicians who respond to your service request live in the same area, giving us an opportunity to provide you with rapid response times, and a unique solution to your problem. With several years of experience in the restoration industry and quality equipment at our disposal, we have the ability to handle water damage incidents affecting a single unit, or your entire building. 
 
The information you provide during your initial call, helps us determine the amount of equipment and personnel needed to address your situation properly. So that once we arrive on your property, we can address any possible hazards and fully inspect the affected area for damages, getting to work immediately to solve your problem. 
 
After communicating your situation to your insurance company and agreeing on which services to implement, SERVPRO technicians mobilize as quickly and efficiently as possible, making every attempt to return your business to a quality pre-damage condition, in the least amount of time possible. 
 
We have access to both hand-held and truck mounted water extraction equipment, each with three main elements, a heater, pump, and vacuum system. Portable extractors hold anywhere from five to twelve gallons of water, while the truck mounted version handles up to 100 gallons of water or more, making it easy to remove excess water from various types of flooring, including carpeting and other upholstery items, such as rugs, and curtains. 
 
Our technicians use a variety of equipment to locate hidden moisture pockets, in walls, attics, and crawl spaces; water cannot hide from a quality infrared moisture detection device. Making it possible for us to dry hard to read, or hidden areas throughout your building and prevent secondary water damage from developing. 
 
During the drying process, SERVPRO technicians place the proper amount of air moving equipment and dehumidifiers into the affected area. We also use detection devices to check the vicinity for moisture and monitor relative humidity to ensure a proper drying environment exists to complete the water damage restoration and limit any interruptions to your business's daily operations. 

Prevent Frozen Pipes from Causing Water Damage

7/26/2017 (Permalink)

Frozen Pipes

Frozen pipes are a leading cause of water damage in the colder months of the year. Why?

Water has the unfortunate property in that as it freezes, it expands. This can affect all types of water lines, whether metal, plastic, or PVC. Simply, all pipes are subject to bursting given the right amount of pressure. As the water freezes, it can expand the pipe, eventually, cause a hairline crack or a complete break. At that point the portion unfrozen will then provide a continual stream of water until shut off, causing water damage throughout the property.

How can I prevent my pipes from freezing or bursting?

If possible, make sure that all pipes and supply lines on exterior walls are insulated. Exterior walls will be much colder than interior walls given their location. Additionally, all water lines in basements and crawlspaces need to be insulted as they will be subjected to very cold temperatures. Simple foam insulation wrap can help prevent your pipes from freezing.
Make sure all outdoor hoses are removed from exterior hose bibs.
Always keep your heating unit on and operational, even when away on vacation. If leaving for an extended period of time, set your thermostat to no colder than 55 degrees to ensure that your home has enough heat to properly keep interior pipes from freezing.
Keep garage doors closed if you have water supply lines located in that area. In extreme cases of sever cold for extended periods of time, ensure that exposed pipes are insulated. Space heaters (placed away from anything flammable) can provide heat and warmth to combat cold environments in garage areas.
If you notice very low water pressure from water supply areas, a frozen pipe could be the cause. Immediate action should be taken to identify the problem.
What should I do if my pipes are already frozen?

Turn on all the faucets with warm water, not hot, to a slow drip. This will help in supplying warmer water to the area without causing an abrupt temperature change. It will also help you in determining the location of the freeze.
Apply exterior heat to the frozen section of pipe. This can be done with a hair dryer, electric heating pad, space heater, towels soaked in warm water wrapped around the pipe. NEVER use open flame devices as this can be a major fire hazard.
Keep continual heat on the area until water flow is restored to normal.
Once restored, try to determine why the area froze. It may be as simple as adding insulation, sleeve wraps, UL listed heat tape, or other forms of insulation.
If you cannot locate, find, or properly thaw your pipes, call a professional plumber to assist.
What if my pipes burst and caused damage?

If your pipes have busted, cracked, or began leaking, immediate action should be taken to ensure that water damage can be minimized to your property. Soak up as much water as possible with towels or extract with a shop vac. It's often necessary to have professionals like SERVPRO come in and completely mitigate the water. Home drying efforts can help reduce damages, but will not get rid of all moisture and humidity. It's important to ensure that your property is completely dry and dehumidified to prevent secondary damage from ruining your home, flooring, furnishings, or building materials. Call SERVPRO today if you've had water damage from a pipe leak, and we'll work with you and/or your insurance company to make sure that your home is restored correctly!

Get more water damage tips here.

Moisture In Walls Can Lead To Mold Damage In Knoxville

6/27/2017 (Permalink)

Mold Damage Knoxville

Even small water damages have the potential to cause serious structural and indoor air quality issues over time. The key to avoiding costly problems in the future is to handle every water damage as a threat to your property. SERVPRO of West Knoxville has the equipment and training and experience to find and dry unseen water before secondary damages occur. The proper equipment makes a measurable difference in reducing the damage expense during a fire or water loss. When time matters, technology, and equipment must be counted on to perform. SERVPRO of West Knoxville will answer your call with rapid action and a full arsenal of drying equipment. Here are a few of the tools used by SERVPRO of West Knoxville
Moisture Sensors are used to detect moisture in carpets, baseboards, and walls
Moisture meters are used to determine the actual moisture content of various materials. The moisture tester provides accurate tester provides accurate readings, allowing SERVPRO of West Knoxville to monitor the drying process.
Thermohygrometers measure temperature and relative humidity. When armed with this information, SERVPRO of West Knoxville can calculate and create an environment most conducive to drying. When facing a contaminated water loss, it is not only important to dry the structure, but the structure must also be disinfected and often deodorized.
Ultra-Low-Volume Foggers will atomize liquid deodorizing agents, producing a fine mist that can easily penetrate the site where odor-causing residues may accumulate.
This device can also be used to inject fungicides and disinfectants into wall cavities and other hard-to-reach areas.
Thermal Foggers dispense solvent-based products by creating a dense fog. The go consists of tiny particles of deodorant solution that attached to and neutralize odor-causing particles.

BE FLOOD SMART

6/27/2017 (Permalink)

Mold Damage

BE FLOOD SMART

Floods are one the most common and widespread natural disasters in the United States. Whether your home or business is near a coastline, along city streets, in the mountains, near a river or even in the desert- there is always potential for flood damage. Floodsmart.gov reports, in the last 5 years, all 50 states have experienced floods or flash floods. Just because you haven’t experienced a flood in the past, does not mean you won’t in the future. In fact, nearly 20% of all flood insurance claims come from moderate-to-low-risk areas. On average, floods cost 3.5 billion in annual losses in the United States

According to the American Red Cross, floods cause more damage in the U.S. every year than any other weather-related disaster. The ARC offers the following flood safety tips

Stay away from floodwaters. If you come upon a flowing stream where water is above your ankles, stop, turn around and go another way. Six inches of swiftly moving water can sweep you off your feet.

If you approach a flooded road while driving, turn around and go another way. If you are caught on a flooded road and waters are rising rapidly around you, get out of the car quickly and move to higher ground. Most cars can be swept away by less than two feet of moving water.

Keep children out of the water. They are curious and often lack judgment about running water or contaminated water.

If a flood does strike your home or business contact your local SERVPRO Franchise Professionals. Even minor floods have the potential to cause major damage to a structure when not treated quickly and properly, and the cleanup is often an overwhelming task. The SERVPRO System is prepared to handle any sized disaster. When fire and water take control of your life, your local SERVPRO Franchise Professional will help you take it back.

Mold Damage Removal Knoxville, TN

6/13/2017 (Permalink)

Mold damage Knoxville, TN

When there's a water intrusion, like a roof leak or leaking water line, mold can quickly become a problem in your home or business. Mold can affect your health and can also cause significant damage to your property. Fortunately, your SERVPRO of West Knoxville professionals has the training, protective gear, and specialized equipment necessary to handle your mold problem. Although every mold damage scenario is different, requiring a unique solution, the general mold remediation process stays the same. The following steps illustrate a 'typical mold removal process.

Call SERVPRO of West Knoxville  

The mold cleanup and restoration process begin when you call SERVPRO of West Knoxville. A representative will ask a series of questions to help determine the necessary equipment, resources, and personnel needed.

Inspection & Damage Assessment

Your property will be carefully inspected for signs of the mold using technology designed to detect mold and hidden water sources. Mold feeds on cellulose and water which can be hidden from plain view. 

Mold Containment

Various containment procedures will be placed to prevent the spread of mold and isolate the contaminated area with physical barriers and negative air pressure to keep the mold spores from spreading during the cleanup process. 

Removing Mold & Mold-Infested Materials

The mold remediation process depends on the amount of mold growth and the type of surfaces on which mold appears. Anti fungal and antimicrobial treatments will be used to eliminate mold colonies and help prevent new colonies from forming. Removing and disposing of mold infested porous materials, like drywall and flooring, may be necessary to remediate heavy mold growth. 

Cleaning Contents & Belongings

SERVPRO of West Knoxville clean your furniture, decorative items, curtains, and other restorable items affected by mold. They use a variety of cleaning techniques to clean and sanitize your belongings. They are also trained to remove odors and deodorize using fogging equipment. 

Restoration

Depending on the level of mold damage, drywall, subfloors, and other building materials may be removed. Restoration may involve minor repairs, such as replacing drywall, painting, and installing new carpet, or it may entail major repairs such as the reconstruction of various areas. 

SERVPRO of West Knoxville understands mold and mold growth and have the training and equipment to remediate mold in your home or business. 

Storm Damage Cleanup in Knoxville, TN

5/31/2017 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Cleanup

DID YOU KNOW?

SERVPRO of West Knoxville/Concord has been cleaning water damages in the local Knoxville, TN market for over 38 years. From toilet overflows, pipe bursts, dishwasher leaks, basement floods, and much more, SERVPRO of West Knoxville/Concord has been providing Knoxville with quality cleanup and restoration work 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. That's over 332,880 hours of being on call to help our clientele!

SERVPRO understands that even the smallest of water problems can be a major catastrophe for the average homeowner. Whether it be damaged property, mold growth, health concerns or other problems, SERVPRO has all the right tools to make it "Like It Never Even Happened®."

With over 190 years of combined experience with our technicians, SERVPRO will promptly arrive at your business or residence, assess the damage, provide a solution, and begin work to ensure that secondary damages do not occur. From extracting water, dehumidifaction, decontamination, mold remediation, full repairs and construction, SERVPRO is here to help day or night.

With free estimates and consultations in Knoxville, insurance billing availability, we're standing by to be of assistance to anyone in need. Find out more about all of our services here.

Science of Drying

5/31/2017 (Permalink)

Science of Drying

Exploring the Science of Drying

Did you know, there is actually a science behind the process of drying? The knowledge of psychometrics is essential to restoring a water damage structure to its preloss condition. While your initial reaction may be to grab a few towels to mop up the mess and places a fan or two around the damage, professional service may be necessary. 

What exactly does “speed up Mother Nature” mean? A wet building can often dry naturally because the environment always seeks equilibrium. When materials are wet, moisture will naturally move to drier air at the surface of the material-but only if the air is, indeed drier. The only problem is, nature takes too long and secondary damages may occur while the building is drying out.

SERVPRO of West Knoxville has been trained to use top-of-the-line equipment to help Mother Nature along, including equipment to help dry hardwood floors, tough-to-reach spaces inside walls, and much more. Your local SERVPRO Franchise Professionals also use state-of-the-art monitoring equipment and a proven scientific process to help speed the drying of your home or business.

SERVPRO is proud to utilize a newly developed tool SERVPRO DryBook.

The SERVPRO DryBook is a proprietary tool allowing us to capture and track the steps of restoration project according to industry best practices and standards. This ensures your restoration is done properly and efficiently. It also improves results and restores your property at a faster rate, getting you back in your home sooner.

Biohazard, Crime Scene and Vandalism Clean Up

5/9/2017 (Permalink)

Bio Hazard

Recognized as a leading fire and water cleanup and restoration provider by hundreds of insurances companies, SERVPRO of West Knoxville also offer fast, reliable biohazard and crime scene cleanup and restoration services to residential and commercial property owners 

Exposer to biological and chemical contaminants can pose serious health consequences for building occupants, employees, customers, and owners. A failure to properly handle and safely remove such hazardous substance can contribute to unhealthy and even dangerous environments. 

SERVPRO of West Knoxville Professionals are trained to safely and effectively remove biohazards substances and prepare waste for proper disposal according to OSHA, EPA, and state local health regulations. 

Equipped with the necessary safety equipment and cleaning products, SERVPRO of West Knoxville Professionals help turn unsafe environments into clean, safe homes and offices.

SERVPRO of West Knoxville can help with the following issues:

  • Blood borne Pathogens
  • Methamphetamine Labs
  • Crime Scene Residues
  • Arson 
  • Vandalism
  • Sewage Backups
  • Black Water Intrusions
  • Mold Mitigation and Remediation 

State and local regulations vary. Contact SERVPRO of West Knoxville today for 24-hour  Emergency Service. 

Leave the Hassle of Board-Ups to the Professionals In Knoxville, TN

5/9/2017 (Permalink)

Storm Damage

Whether after a fire, storm, or other structural disaster, boarding up damaged property is a burden that no one should ever have to go through- especially if it is your property that has been damaged. 

Boarding up damaged property incorrectly could cause secondary damages such as moisture or animal intrusion, making the situation even worse. The process of boarding up after an unexpected damage can also be as dangerous as the damage itself. 

Your SERVPRO of West Knoxville Professionals can board up the damaged property and mitigate and remediate the original damage, providing you with peace of mind while helping make it "like it never even happened." 

Water Damage From Storm Damage In Knoxville, TN

5/5/2017 (Permalink)

Storm Damage

Everyone knows that wood and water don't mix. Excessive water can cause wood flooring to buckle, bow, warp, split and deteriorate. But SERVPRO of West Knoxville/Concord also knows that these effects are not instant, and there is time to mitigate and prevent most flooring losses. Acting quickly enough, SERVPRO can often extract water, set job specific drying equipment, and salvage floors to the point of reuse. A good example is this gymnasium floor. A church in Knoxville, TN came in to 2 inches of water covering their entire gym floor. Their first thought was that their floors were ruined. But due to the flooring construction and quick response time, the floors were dried and salvaged using specialized drying techniques.

Some floors are unsalvageable, no matter how quick of a response or how much equipment is used, but it's always a good idea to determine your options upfront before making any decisions.

SERVPRO experts are trained at reading moisture content in building materials, and quickly making a decision on proceeding with drying techniques. So the next time your flooring is under inched of water, called the experts at SERVPRO of West Knoxville/Concord to determine if your floors can be salvaged, saving time, money, and headache.

Learn more about drying and dehumidification here.

 

Removing Pathogens and Hazard Communications From Your Business

5/5/2017 (Permalink)

Biohazards

SERVPRO of West Knoxville/Concord has added to its long list of certifications, by attending the National Institute of Decontamination Specialists, sponsored and certified by the IICRC. Max Pope, Operations Manager with SERVPRO of West Knoxville/Concord, attended the four-day training course, which covered Bloodborne Pathogens, Hazard Communications, Respiratory Protection, and Lockout/Tagout Awareness.

SERVPRO cleans all kinds of losses in Knoxville, TN, including crime scenes and trauma scenes, where bloodborne pathogens and dangerous contaminations can present a risk for clients, tenants, technicians, and the general public. Even if a loss of life did not occur, there can still be dangerous risks when bodily fluids are present.

Strict adherence to OSHA guidelines and IICRC standards must be met when dealing with these circumstances.

Find out more about these services here.

Disaster Response - Plan for it with the SERVPRO ERP

5/5/2017 (Permalink)

SERVPRO can help!

Disaster strikes. But never when you expect it to. Be smart and plan ahead for water or fire damage.

SERVPRO of West Knoxville/Concord is proud to offer the Emergency Ready Plan (ERP), a great tool in preparing your commercial business for the worst-case scenario. The ERP works as a data collection source, storing all your important and vital information in one place: at your fingertips.

Never be lost or without key account, contact, and utility information again. The ERP app works seamlessly on computers, smartphones, and tablets. And since it's cloud based, all platforms are constantly synced together.

SERVPRO representatives will implement this service free of charge at your place of business. We will help you gather all information you may need in the event of an emergency, have all company contacts on file, and include pictures and locations of all shutoffs for utilities.

Water and fire damage can wreak havoc, but SERVPRO and the ERP app help you get back into business quicker, safer, and with less worry of losing vital information. Call today for a live demonstration over a computer, or live in person at your facility. 865-690-9658

Learn more about commercial services and disaster recovery here. 

RESIPE OF SAFTEY

5/5/2017 (Permalink)

Fire Damage

Each November families gather to celebrate Thanksgiving by preparing a delicious feast, but if you don’t practice safe cooking habits, your happy holiday could become hazardous. According to the National Fire Protection Association, cooking is the main cause for home fires and injuries, with Thanksgiving being the peak day for cooking-related fires. Review the following safety tips to ensure you can enjoy a safe holiday.

  • Never leave cooking food unattended-stay in the kitchen when frying, grilling or broiling food.  If someone must leave the kitchen for even a short period of time, they should turn off the stove.
  • Check food regularly while cooking and remain in the home while cooking. Use a timer as a reminder that the stove or oven is on.
  • Keep the kids away from the cooking area. Enforce a “kid-free zone” and make them stay at least three feet away from the stove.
  • Keep anything flammable-pot holders, oven mitts, wooden utensils, paper or plastic bags, food packaging, and towels or curtains- away from the stove, oven or any other appliance in the kitchen that generates heat.
  • Do not wear loose clothing while cooking.
  • Clean cooking surfaces on a regular basis to prevent grease build up
  • Purchase a fire extinguisher to keep in the kitchen. Contact the local fire department for training on the proper use of extinguishers.
  • Always check the kitchen before going to bed or leaving the home to make sure all stoves, ovens and small appliances are turned off.
  • Install a smoke alarm near the kitchen, on each level of the home, near sleeping areas and inside and outside bedrooms. Use the test button to check it each month. Replace all batteries at least once a year.

HEATING HAZARDS

5/5/2017 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Knoxville, TN

Eliminate Heating Hazards This Winter

The winter season is in full swing! The days are shorter and the temperatures are lower. No matter where you live, winter brings a change in the weather. In a effort to keep our homes and workplaces cozy, many people use alternative heat sources like fireplaces, portable space hearers, and wood burning stoves. According to the Nation Fire Protection Association, heating equipment is responsible for an estimated $893 million in property damage annually. Heating is the second leading cause of residential fire deaths, making it important to review ways to help reduce the risk of a heating-related fire.

  • Keep anything flammable at least three feet from heating equipment, like the furnace, fireplace, wood stove, or a portable space heater. Have a three-foot “kid-free zone” around open fires and space heaters.
  • Remember to turn portable heaters off when leaving the room or going to bed.
  • Always use the right kind of fuel, specified by the manufacturer, for fuel burning space heaters.
  • Make sure the fireplace has a sturdy screen to stop sparks from flying into the room. Ashes should be cool before putting them in a metal container. Keep the container a safe distance away from your home.
  • Have heating equipment and chimneys cleaned and inspected every year by a qualified professional.
  • Have a qualified professional install stationary space heating equipment, water heaters or central heating equipment according to the local codes and manufacturer’s instructions.
  • Test smoke alarms monthly.

Managing Mold

5/3/2017 (Permalink)

In as little as 48 hours, mold can quickly become a problem in your home or business when there’s a water intrusion, like a roof leak or leaking water lines. Mold can cause health effects and can also cause significant damage to your property.

Although every mold damage scenario is different requiring a unique solution, the general mold remediation process stays the same. The following steps illustrate a “typical” mold removal process.

Inspection and Mold Damage Assessment

Your property will be carefully inspected for signs of mold using various technologies to detect mold and hidden water sources. Mold feeds on cellulose an water and can be hidden from plain view.

Mold Containment

Various containment procedures will be placed to prevent the spread of mold, like negative air chambers to isolate the contaminated area with physical barriers and negative air pressure to keep the mold spores from spreading during the cleanup process.

Air Filtration

Specialized filtration equipment captures microscopic mold spores out of the air. SERVPRO technicians utilize powerful “air scrubbers” and HEPA vacuums to prevent  the spread of these mold spores while the mold remediation is in progress.

Removing Mold and Mold-Infested Materials

The mold remediation process depends on the amount of mold growth and the types of surfaces on which the mold appears. Antifungal and antimicrobial treatments will be used to eliminate  mold colonies and help prevent new colonies from forming. Removing and deposing of mold-infested porous materials, like drywall and flooring, may be necessary to remediate heavy mold growth.

Cleaning Contents and Belongs

SERVPRO Franchise Professionals clean your furniture, decorative items, curtains, and other restorable items affected by mold. They use a variety of cleaning techniques to clean and sanitize your belongings. They are also trained to remove odors and deodorization using fogging equipment.

Restoration

Depending on the level of mold damage, drywall, subfloors, and other building materials may be removed. Restoration may involve minor repairs, such as replacing drywall, painting, and installing new carpet; or it may entail major repairs such as the reconstruction of various areas or rooms in a home or business.

Understanding Water Damage in Knoxville, TN

3/29/2017 (Permalink)

Flooded Bed Room

When your home or business suffers a water damage in Knoxville, TN, understanding what type of water you are dealing with is critical to ensuring proper cleanup.
There are three types of water. Clean water is water from a broken pipe or other water source; rainwater is also considered clean. The term gray water is used to classify slightly contaminated water. Clean water becomes gray water when it is left untreated allowing bacteria and other contaminants to begin growing, making the water hazardous. Black water is highly contaminated and filled with fungi, bacteria, chemicals and more. Black water is typically caused by sewage damage, flooding or any type of natural disaster. Black water should always be handled by trained professionals.
Consider taking the follow precautions to help minimize damage or prevent further damage while waiting for help to arrive.

Damage from Clean Water in Knoxville, TN


-Shut off water source if possible or contact a qualified professional to do so.
-Turn off circuit breakers for wet areas of the building if access to the power distribution panel is safe from potential electrical shock. Do not enter rooms with standing water, as electrical shock hazards may exist.
-Remove as much excess water as possible my mopping and blotting. Wipe excess water from wood furniture after removing lamps and table items.
-Remove and prop up wet upholstery cushions to allow more even drying.
- Move any paintings, art objects computers, documents and other valuable items that may be sensitive to moisture to a safe place.
-Do not leave books, newspapers magazines or other colored items on wet carpets or floors as they may cause staining.
- Do not use your household vacuum cleaner to remove water as there is potential for electrical shock causing damage to the vacuum cleaner.
-Do not turn on ceiling fixtures if the ceiling is wet; do not enter rooms where ceilings are sagging from retained water.

Damage from Contaminated Water in Knoxville, TN


-Avoid all contact with sewage and items contaminated by sewage. Wash your hands thoroughly if you come in contact with contaminated items.
-Do not walk through contaminated areas, as you could spread damage to unaffected areas.
-Do not turn on the HVAC system if there is a possibility of spreading contaminated air.
-Do not use household fans to dry the structure; air flow could spread contaminants.
-Discard any food and/or products for personal hygiene and cleanliness if exposed to the contaminated areas.

Flooding Can Happen In Knoxville, TN

3/7/2017 (Permalink)

Flood Damage

According to the National Weather Service (NOAA), "Approximately seventy-five percent of all Presidential disaster declarations are associated with flooding." NOAA lists the most common flood hazards in the United States as:

  • Flash Flooding
  • River Flooding
  • Storm Surge and Coastal Inundation from
  • Tropical and Non-Tropical Systems
  • Burn Scars/Debris Flows (Caused by Wildfires)
  • Ice/Debris Jams
  • Snowmelt
  • Dry Wash (Caused by heavy rainfall in dry areas)
  • Dam Breaks/Levee Failure

Just because you haven't experienced a flood doesn't mean you won't in the future. In fact, 20% of all claims paid by the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) were for policies in low-risk communities. On average, flood cost $3.5 billion in annual losses in the U.S., and commercial flood claims average more than $75,000 (NFIP).

When catastrophic water damage happens to you, SERVPRO of West Knoxville can help. They can help you prepare ahead of time with an Emergency Ready Profile, or respond to any size disaster to begin cleanup and restoration to get you back in business as soon as possible.

Halt Winter Heating Hazards In Knoxville

2/8/2017 (Permalink)

Fire Damage

The winter season is here and with it comes shorter days and lower temperatures. No matter where you live, winter brings a change in the weather. In an effort to keep our homes and workplace cozy, many people use alternative heat sources like fireplaces, portable space heaters, and wood burning stoves. Did you know, heating equipment is a leading cause of home fire deaths? According to the National Fire Protection Association, heating equipment fires caused an estimated $1 billion in direct property damage annually. Keep the following safety tips in mind to help reduce your risk of a heating-related fire.

- Keep anything flammable at least three feet away from heating equipment, like the furnace, fireplace, wood stove, or a portable space heater. Have a three foot "kid-free zone" around open fires and space heaters.

- Make sure the fireplace has a sturdy screen to stop sparks from flying into the room. Ashes should be cool before putting them in metal containers. Keep the container a safe distance away from your home.

-Remember to turn portable heaters off when leaving the room or going to bed.

-Always use the right kind of fuel, specified by the manufacturer for fuel burning space heaters.

- Have heating equipment and chimneys cleaned and inspected every year by a qualified professional.

- Have a qualified professional install stationary space heating equipment, water heaters or central heating equipment according to the local codes and manufacturer's instructions.

-Test smoke alarms.

2017 Resolution: Plan Ahead

1/19/2017 (Permalink)

With each new year, many people resolve to better themselves or some part of their life. This year, make a resolution to be READY. No one ever plans on a disaster, but you can prepare for it. The SERVPRO of West Knoxville will help ensure you are "Ready for whatever happens' in 2017.

In the event of an emergency, the ERP can help minimize business interruption by having an immediate plan of action in place for your facility. The ERP is a comprehensive document contain critical information about your business including emergency contacts, shut-off valve locations, and priority areas. The ERP also establishes SERVPRO of West Knoxville as your disaster mitigation and restoration provider, giving you access to over 45 years experience. The ERP is a no-cost assessment; all it requires is a little time and money in the future. By downloading the free SERVPRO READY App, this information is stored electronically and can be accessed using your mobile device putting help at your fingertips.

Preparation is the key to making it through any size disaster, whether it is a small water leak, a large fire or an area flood. Having a plan in place man help minimize the amount of time your business is inactive and get you back in the building following a disaster. Don't wait until disaster strikes resolve to be READY.

Tools For Keeping You Safe

11/1/2016 (Permalink)

Storm Damage

One of the best precautions you can take is to purchase a good quality weather radio. A weather radio is designed to alert you to potentially dangerous weather situations, like an approaching tornado. It allows you to be warned ahead of storms, providing you time to seek shelter. A weather radio is the most reliable source for weather alerts.

Weather radios have made any advancements over the years and are very affordable. Most basic weather radios average around $30 and can be programmed to only alert you for the weather alerts you choose.

When shopping for a weather radio look for the following key features.

• Reviewable alerts (you can scroll through alerts and turn off the siren for alerts you do not wish to hear)
• Specific Area Message Encoding (SAME)
• Alert programming (alerts when specific counties are threatened, ensuring you only receive alerts for your country)
• Ease of programming

If you need help programming your weather radio, you can always contact your local National Weather Service Office or for additional information, including county codes for your state, visit NOAA Weather Radio website at www.nws.gove/nwr

FIRE PREVENTION MONTH

10/13/2016 (Permalink)

Fire Prevention Month

 

October is Fire Prevention Month a perfect time to examine emergency preparedness plans for your home and business, including your fire escape plan. Do you have a fire escape plan? Have you changed your smoke alarm batteries within the last year?

 

The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) designates a week each October to focus on fire prevention awareness. The 2016 theme is “Don’t Wait-Check the Date! Replace Smoke Alarms Every 10 Years” designed to educate the public on the basic but essential elements of smoke alarm safety. The NFPA recommends installing smoke alarms in every bedroom outside a separate sleeping area, and on every level of your home, including the basement. Did you know that roughly half of the home fire deaths results from fires reported between 11 pm and 7 am when most people are asleep? Smoke alarm cuts the chances of dying in a reported fire in half!

FIRE ALARMS

2/25/2016 (Permalink)

SMOKE ALARMS

Smoke alarms play a vital role in saving lives, and when properly installed, can reduce the risk of fire injury by half.

The National Fire Protection Association recommends smoke alarms be installed in every bedroom, outside all sleeping quarters and on every level of the house. Business owners should consult the local Fire Marshall to ensure specific building fire codes and smoke detector requirements are met.

Smoke alarms work best when paired with a fire escape plan. A plan allows your family, employees or clients to escape quickly and safely in an emergency situation.

Review the follow tips regarding smoke detector installation and maintenance. For more on emergency preparedness, contact your local SERVPRO Franchise Professionals.

  • Install smoke alarms on every level of the home, including the basement.

  • Smoke alarms should be installed away from the kitchen to prevent false alarms. Generally, they should be at least 10 feet from cooking appliance.

  • Test smoke alarms at least once a month using the test button.

  • Replace batteries in all smoke alarms at least once a year. If an alarm “chirps” the battery is low and should be replaced right away.

  • Replace all smoke alarms when they are 10 years old.

Avoid Holiday Hazzards

12/23/2015 (Permalink)

Avoid Holiday Hazards

Candles, pretty lights and decorations are just a few of the items that add to the charm and cheer of the holiday season however, if they are not used carefully your holidays may go from festive to frightening very quickly.

Review the following simple safety tips, provided by the National Fire Protection Association to greatly reduce the fire risk in your home or business this holiday season.

  • Two out of five home decoration fires are started by candles. Keep candles at least 12 inches away from anything that is flammable

  • Use sturdy candleholders that are not likely to tip over and place candles on clear, uncluttered surfaces. Consider using flameless candles instead of real candles.

  • Make sure your tree and decorations are at least three feet away from heat sources like fireplaces, radiators, space heaters candles or heat vents.

  • Make sure you have the correct type of lights for your  home. Some lights are designed for only indoor or outdoor use, but not both.

  • Carefully inspect light strands before hanging them. Replace any string of lights with worn or broken cords or loose bulb connections. Connect no more than three strands of light sets.

  • Remember to turn off outside decorative lights and Christmas tree lights before leaving or going to bed.

  • Get rid of your tree after Christmas or when it is dry. Dried-out trees are a fire danger and should not be left in the home or garage, or placed outside against the home. Check with your local community to find a recycling program.

  • Bring outdoor electrical lights inside after the holidays to prevent hazards and make them last longer.

Prevent Fire Damage in the Winter Months in Knoxville, TN

2/25/2015 (Permalink)

This House Fire in Knoxville Occurred During Winter The House Fire

Every winter we see an increase in the amount of residential house fires in Knoxville, TN, resulting in fire damage. With the winter months come cold weather, and the need to add some extra heat. But along with the extra heat, there are added risks involved.

According to FEMA, the Federal Emergency Management Association and NFPA, the National Fire Prevention Association, half of all home fires caused by heating sources occur in the months of December, January, and February. Additionally, 1 in 6 home fires are a result of heating equipment, and 1 in 5 home fire deaths.

Extra precaution should be used to prevent fire damage and recognize the added risks.

  • Keep anything that can ignite and burn at least 3 feet from all heating sources. This includes gas fireplaces, wood burning fireplaces, space heaters, wood stoves, and radiators.
  • Never use portable generators inside a residence. The output of carbon monoxide and fumes can be a silent killer.
  • Install a carbon monoxide detector and inspect it at least once a month.
  • Have a professional inspect your chimney annually to make sure it's operating correctly, and cleaned as needed.
  • Never overload outlets with electrical heating sources. No more than one source should be plugged in to one outlet.
  • Keep fire extinguishers serviced and up to date.
  • If your pipes freeze and burst, be aware of electrical hazards with flooding water.
  • Always discard used and cooled ashes properly, a minimum of 10 feet away from houses or any building, using a metal container.

To learn more about SERVPRO of West Knoxville and fire damage services, visit here. For more tips on preventing winter fires and education, visit www.usfa.fema.gov/winter and www.nfpa.org/winter

Holiday Fire Hazards and Fire Prevention Tips

11/26/2013 (Permalink)

Natural Christmas trees can ignite, burn, and spread to the house within a matter of seconds. Christmas Tree on fire.

It's the holiday season again. Brightly lit decorations, elaborate meals, and large gatherings are all a part of holiday celebrations. Unfortunately, these annual traditions also cause an average of 230 homes fires each year, with an average of 4 deaths, 21 injuries, and $17.3 million in property damage.

There are about 3 times as many cooking related fires on Thanksgiving Day and almost twice as many on Christmas Day as there on no holidays.  Luckily, homeowners can help keep their homes and their families safe during the holiday season by understanding the dangers.

Holiday Cooking Fire Facts from SERVPRO

  • Thanksgiving Day has three times the average number of reported home structure fires involving cooking equipment. 
  • The two other peak days for cooking-related fires are Christmas Day and Christmas Eve.

Holiday Cooking Safety Tips from SERVPRO

  • Supervise items on the stovetop. Fifty-eight percent of kitchen fires involve ranges; homes with electric cooktops have a higher risk of fire than homes with gas cooktops.
  • Keep flammable items – potholders, packaging, wrapping, wooden utensils, loose clothing – away from the stovetop.
  • Don’t let lack of sleep or alcohol consumption affect your ability to concentrate on preparing the meal.

Holiday Decorating Fire Facts from SERVPRO

  • Half of all holiday decoration fires start because the decoration is too close to a heat source.
  • On average, 32 candle fires are reported each day. December is the peak month for candle fires.

Holiday Decorating Safety Tips from SERVPRO

  • Keep all decorations away from heat sources like radiators, portable heaters, and fireplaces.
  • Use flameless candles.
  • If you do use traditional candles, burn them in sturdy candleholders, well away from drapes and other flammable materials. Never leave them unattended and never allow them to burn down to less than one inch in length. 

Christmas Tree Fire Facts from SERVPRO

  • 50% of live tree fires occur between December 22 and January 5.
  • 31% of tree fires are caused by electrical problems.
  • 14% involve decorative lights.

Christmas Tree Safety Tips from SERVPRO

  • Keep live trees well watered to reduce the chance of a fire.
  • Check wiring on lights for breaks and wear, replace worn strings and don’t exceed manufacturer guidelines for connecting multiple strands of lights.
  • Don't leave tree lights plugged in when you are away from home or asleep. 

Learn more about fire damage and cleaning here.

Categories

Archived Posts