Recent Posts

Keeping Your Kitchen Safe From Fires

6/14/2019 (Permalink)

A house fire in West Hills, TN can be devastating, and fire damage professionals report that most house fires begin in the kitchen. A kitchen fire can spread throughout the house in just a matter of minutes. Because a kitchen fire is often caused by basic carelessness, taking note of some simple tips for fire prevention in the kitchen can save you a lot of unnecessary heartaches.

1. Never leave the stove unattended. Do not leave the kitchen while pots and pans are heating on the stove. Always turn off the heat before taking a phone call or answering the front door.

2. Watch your heat source. Carefully monitor what you are cooking, especially if you are cooking with grease. A grease fire can happen suddenly if the grease is overheated. Never cook grease on high heat, and if grease begins to smoke, turn off the heat immediately.

3. Remove flammable items from the stovetop. Pot holders and kitchen towels can easily catch fire. Do not set utensils too close to the heated range. While it may seem like one of the most obvious tips, food packaging and paper towels should never be placed on the stovetop itself.

4. Be mindful of your clothing. Loose fitting or long flowing sleeves can be a fire hazard. Do not wear anything that could get caught on a pan or fall into the heating range.

5. Be ready to extinguish a fire. You should always have a fire extinguisher that is easily accessible in your kitchen. You can also quickly extinguish some fires by smothering them with a lid or a cookie sheet. If there is a grease fire, do not use water. Instead, immediately douse it with baking soda or salt. Be sure to turn off the heat.

Cooking in the kitchen should be fun and enjoyable. Following these tips for fire prevention in the kitchen can remove unnecessary anxiety and keep your focus where it should be — on the joy of preparing food for family and friends.

Tips for Dealing With Wet Building Materials

6/11/2019 (Permalink)

Water Damage Tips for Dealing With Wet Building Materials Replace swollen subfloor

How to Deal With Excess Water and Restore Your Home

When exposed to moisture, building materials can react in different ways and cause varying degrees of water damage, from swelling wood to sagging walls. Understanding how different types of material can be impacted by water is important for you to properly address any problems that may arise. Here are some guidelines to help you deal with excess water and restore your home in Knoxville,TN.

Replace Swollen Wood

Wooden materials in your home that have been impacted by water typically exhibit signs of swelling. Most objects that are made of wooden materials that have been swollen can be replaced, including:

  • Cabinets
  • Wood furniture
  • Subfloor
  • Wooden doors

Replacing any swollen wood when you first notice a problem can help reduce the risk of damage in your home. If there are any signs of water damage around your living space, be sure to contact residential water restoration services as soon as possible.

Preserve Drywall and Real Wood

While swelling wood should be replaced, drywall and real wood can be saved once they have been dried. Take some time to assess the degree of water damage before contacting a professional so that you can be well prepared once help arrives. Professional services can dry any excess water and help your home return to its normal state. When dealing with any kind of water damage, remember that immediate action is crucial.

Check Your Supply Lines

A supply line, which is a central waterway that reaches from the plumbing behind your wall to your faucet, should be checked at least once a year to ensure that it’s working properly. When one of these waterways breaks down, it might mean that a pipe has broken and should therefore be taken care of immediately. Schedule a water pipe repair as soon as you come across an issue to keep your home secure.
Whether you’re dealing with swelling wood or damaged drywall, don’t wait to fix the problem. Any water damage caused by wet building materials should be taken care of quickly in order to preserve the state of your home.

4 Ways To Reduce the Spread of Mold Inside Your Home

5/29/2019 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation 4 Ways To Reduce the Spread of Mold Inside Your Home Mold spores can travel easily through the air.

Mold thrives in moist environments and can be extremely destructive. Extensive contamination may require professional mold remediation. However, because the fungus is prevalent throughout the environment, eliminating its presence from your home may be extremely challenging. Fortunately, there are several strategies you can employ to control the problem and avoid spreading mold.

1. Control Humidity

Controlling moisture is a key prevention strategy. A humid environment indicates the presence of a high volume of water particles. Condensation on window sills and bathroom mirrors are symptoms of this issue.

To alleviate this problem, you should ensure windows are adequately sealed and employ a dehumidifier. You can also utilize bathroom and kitchen exhaust fans to reduce additional moisture buildup while bathing and cooking.

2. Utilize an Air Purifier

Mold spores can travel easily through the air. HEPA air filters are designed to capture microscopic organisms, including mold particles. Utilizing an air purifier that contains this type of filter can help you capture and kill spores, alleviating concerns about spreading mold inside your home.

3. Investigate Damp or Stained Areas

Mold can often breed undetected. Because many pipes are hidden behind walls, a large portion of your residence may be vulnerable to this issue. For this reason, you should promptly investigate any potential signs of a concealed leak, such as damp or bubbled walls, stained ceilings or warped flooring.

4. Promptly Clean up Damp Areas

If you detect a leak, promptly removing any wet items, including carpets, drywall and insulation, is vital. You should also quickly soak up pooled water and utilize fans to dry the affected space.

Routinely drying and cleaning damp areas around your kitchen and bathroom sinks is another important containment strategy. To prevent black mold infiltration inside your shower, you should also wipe down this structure after every use.

Spreading mold may be a concern for many homeowners in Cedar Bluff, TN. Efficiently controlling moisture can help everyone safeguard their homes from potentially destructive contamination requiring mold remediation.

3 Ways To Keep Mold Away from Your Restaurant

5/23/2019 (Permalink)

For restaurant owners in West Hills, TN, one of the last things they want to see is mold growth in their facility. There are several ways to prevent this problem. Here are some of the steps many business owners take.

1. Use Proper Ventilation. The presence of high humidity in the kitchen can not only lead to food mold but other types of mold as well. This is why it’s important to keep humidity levels low. One way to do this is to make sure the property had enough ventilation to keep air circulating and reduce the buildup of water vapor in the air. Water vapor in the kitchen can come from a variety of places including boiling liquids or dishwashing.

2. Take Care of Leaks. Mold also likes to grow in areas where water has damaged the property. Water damages can come from leaky pipes, roof leaks, the buildup in poor ventilation, and even unattended spills. To prevent mold growth in these areas, it’s best to fix the problem as quickly as possible. Mold and water damage restoration professional may be able to help.

3. Remember Food Safety. The Department of Agriculture has released several food safety steps that may help prevent a food mold problem. These include having proper food storage areas with a humidity level under 40 percent, regularly cleaning refrigeration units, keeping food in sealed containers until ready for use, keeping all sponges and other cleaning tools fresh, and examining food items received by the restaurant to ensure they are up to your quality standards.

Using proper ventilation, fixing water damage quickly, and following food safety guidelines are all ways to prevent mold growth in a restaurant environment. If you think you may have a mold problem, it’s best to call a professional as soon as possible so that the issue can be handled safely and quickly.

What to Know About Wind Damage and Your Property

5/17/2019 (Permalink)

Storm Damage What to Know About Wind Damage and Your Property Dead or loose branches can fall into the building

Flooding is not the only form of damage of storm can bring to your Cedar Bluff,TN, business. High winds can lead to missing shingles or a roof leak. Here are a few things you may want to know about wind damage and your property.

There are a Number of Ways Wind Can Cause Damage

There are a number of ways storm winds may lead to a damaged roof. Here are a few of them.

  • Winds can pry up loose shingles
  • Debris may be picked up and thrown into the property
  • Dead or loose branches can fall into the building
  • Unrepaired wear and tear of wind damage can grow over time

You Can Take Prevention Steps to Protect the Property

In many cases there are steps you can take to prevent a roof leak, missing shingles, or other damage that commonly occurs with storms. These may include cutting back trees away from the roof, clearing the yard of any degrees that could be caught by the wind, and covering over areas that may be prone to damage before the storm arrives. If your business has suffered storm damage its best to contact a professional as quickly as possible.

Wind Damage to Your Business Can Be Repaired

Sometimes damage occurs to spite the best precautions. Fortunately, in a situation like this a storm damage restoration service may be able to help. This team of professionals can handle everything from cleaning up water damage from a leak in the roof, to making sure no mold to sets in. They can even to help restore any storm damaged items inside the building. Your company building can be restored so it looks like nothing ever happened.

High storm winds can cause damage in a number of ways that can lead to a roof leak. This can include beating away shingles or thrown debris into your company building. Fortunately, you can take preventive steps in order to protect your property. This may include trimming trees, or covering areas that could potentially be damaged. If you do experience damage to your company property a restoration service may be able to help.

How Do Experts Restore Items With Fire Damage?

5/17/2019 (Permalink)

Fire Damage How Do Experts Restore Items With Fire Damage? The professionals at SERVPRO can take care of soot and smoke damage

4 Content Cleaning Treatments

Restoration professionals use a wide variety of treatments to clean items damaged by soot and smoke. From dry-cleaning to abrasive blasting and immersion to ultrasonic waves, there are many ways to remove every trace of staining and odor from the contents of a home that has suffered a fire. Any burnt or charred items should be disposed of to avoid recontamination. Here are four general categories of content cleaning treatments that experts use to treat items damaged by fire.

1. Wet Cleaning

Wet cleaning involves the application of water or cleaning solution or the immersion of small to medium-sized contents in a bath of solution. This method is most effective for hard, non-porous materials. The application of high-pressure ultrasonic waves can remove stubborn residue.

2. Damp Cleaning

Spraying and wiping is a technique that is most useful for cleaning soot and smoke residue off of some delicate surfaces. This method of cleaning may be recommended for items such as artwork or upholstery.

3. Dry-Cleaning

Restoration professionals use a version of the same treatment that applies to clothing and textiles. Other techniques that do not call for the use of cleaning solutions or water include chemical sponges and abrasive blasting. A chemical sponge is made of natural rubber and does not contain chemicals. Blasting involves the use of specialized abrasive powders that are each suitable for different types of materials.

4. Foam Cleaning

Foam cleaning may be ideal for materials that are likely to shrink, such as upholstery. This treatment is effective for eliminating stains and odors.

Homeowners generally do not have access to the commercial-grade content cleaning solutions and dry-cleaning equipment used by restoration professionals. Experts with IICRC credentials can mitigate, clean and rebuild a structure while treating the contents. These items will be held safely in content storage until restoration work is finished at a residence in Knoxville,TN.

Storms: Prepare Your Home

4/26/2019 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Storms: Prepare Your Home If you do not already have flood insurance, now is the time to consider purchasing it.

Are you worried about the damage that flood water from a West Haven, TN storm could cause to your house? There are a few actions that you can take to defend your home against these powerful weather events:

1. Install a sump pump. A battery-operated model is ideal, as it can be used during power outages. A sump pump can be a very good defense against excess water that can lead to a flooded building.

2. Get flood insurance. Did you know that your homeowner’s insurance policy does not cover floods? If you do not already have flood insurance, now is the time to consider purchasing it. If you have forgotten to renew your policy, you will want to do so before a storm hits.

3. Use check valves. Installing check valves around your house can be a relatively simple way to prevent flood water from becoming an issue. They prevent reverse water flow and are automatic, so you do not have to operate them by hand in order to prevent flooding.

4. Clean gutters and drains. Many homeowners forget to clean their drains and gutters, which can lead to water backup outside and inside your home. Complete regular inspections and clean any buildup that you find. Scheduling periodic checks can help you keep your home in the best shape to prevent floods year-round.

Remember that no matter how hard you try to protect your home, there is still always a possibility of storm-related destruction. Fortunately, water damage restoration specialists in the West Haven, TN area can usually arrive on-scene - often on a 24 hour emergency basis - and survey any damage from flood water that has occurred. They can also put together and typically initiate a cleanup plan that will give you the best chances of restoring your property and possibly even salvaging your water-logged belongings. Storms are scary, and damage from them is even scarier. Help ease your own mind by planning ahead and knowing where to turn for help if it should be needed.

Commercial Toilet Won't Stop Flushing? Here’s How To Fix It

4/19/2019 (Permalink)

While there have probably been any number of small plumbing and toilet issues you’ve fixed on your West Hills, TN property, it becomes a whole different story when you’re dealing with toilet overflow. After all, even if you learn how to stop a toilet, the water damage has already left its mark. Therefore, it’s important to learn how to deal with stopping a commercial toilet from constantly flushing, and how to handle the toilet flood that follows suit.

Become Acquainted With the Flushometer

Despite having seen plenty of flushometers in public settings, including in your own commercial building, you might not have ever taken the time to understand how they function. However, you’ll quickly see something is amiss when you notice the toilet overflow that comes with a faulty flushometer that doesn’t stop flushing. When you need to make a quick fix before calling on professionals for help, you can follow a few easy steps that involve:

  • Taking a flat screwdriver and shutting off the flow of water to the flushometer;
  • Loosening the top lid with a wrench before unscrewing it off;
  • Taking out and cleaning the gasket and the interior weep hole; and,
  • Replacing everything back to its original condition.

If these steps don’t stop a toilet from flushing immediately, it might be time to replace the gasket. Whatever the culprit, these steps can help stop the swell of water from rising until help arrives.

Contact Experienced Restoration Specialists

Even if your skills as a handyman have stopped the issue for the time being, it’s best to call on a team of expert water damage repair technicians to work on cleaning up the toilet flood that remains. This ensures that your commercial carpeting or other flooring is sanitized and won’t lead to possible mold growth.

Do Away With Toilet Problems

After learning how to fix a flushometer and stop the spread of toilet overflow, you can now feel more prepared to handle any other toilet issues that may arise at your West Hills, TN building.

Commonly Used Equipment and Procedures Used in Mold Remediation

4/14/2019 (Permalink)

Commercial Commonly Used Equipment and Procedures Used in Mold Remediation When you notice mold in your business it’s likely that you will want to begin the remediation process as soon as possible.

When you notice mold in your business in West Haven, TN it’s likely that you will want to begin the remediation process as soon as possible. However, it’s often important to understand the types of equipment and methods that are used to protect everyone throughout the process.

1. Covers

Small spores can easily spread if they are caught in someone’s hair or on someone’s clothes, which is why a variety of covers are commonly used during mold remediation. Before entering a building with mold, people often put on covers for hair, clothes, shoes and hands. Generally, disposable covers are preferred since reusing covers of any kind can make it easier for mold to spread.

2. Containment Methods

In addition to using covers to prevent the spread and regrowth of mold, containment methods are often important during mold remediation. Experts in mold removal will work to contain the area affected, which helps to protect the unaffected parts of the building. All fans are turned off to minimize the airflow and physical barriers are also often used to make it difficult for the mold to move further in and around the building.

3. Face Masks

A respirator, or face mask, is often an important piece of equipment used during mold removal. In order to thoroughly assess a business, professionals often must get close to the source of the issue, which means exposing themselves to mold. A face mask that filters the air is especially useful if black mold is present in a building. However, even if less harmful types of mold growth are present in a business, it’s often wise to use face masks as a precautionary measurement. Overall, the face masks help to minimize any adverse effects of mold.

The right equipment and procedures can protect everyone involved in the mold remediation process. Covers, containment methods and masks are often used to keep people involved in mold removal safe.

Smoke Alarms Save Lives

3/31/2019 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Smoke Alarms Save Lives Fire Damage Prevention

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 Cedar Bluff Professional.