WHAT TO EXPECT FROM FALL STORMS
Be prepared for fall storms so you don't have to deal with damage after it's too late!
Here at SERVPRO of Belle Meade/ West Nashville, we are happy to advise area homeowners about what to expect from the coming fall storm season. Extreme fall weather, such as high winds, heavy rains, and even ice, can lead to power outages and disruption of communications and can be damaging to personal and business property and belongings. It’s important to be prepared for diverse weather situations during autumn here in Middle Tennessee.
Here are some things you can expect from fall storms and some essential safety tips you can observe to be prepared:
- High winds: Prepare for high winds by trimming bushes and trees and removing dead trees, bushes, and all broken branches from around your home or business. These can cause injury and damage to roofing and windows if they fall or break during extreme weather involving windy conditions.
- Heavy rains: Clear clogged rain gutters to get ready for all the water. When heavy rains come, they need to be able to flow down your rain gutters and away from your roofing. If there is dirt and debris left in your gutters from last spring, the water will pool and begin to back up, possibly damaging interior wall spaces in your home. This can lead to mold growth, causing a need for mold removal on top of the storm damage. A rain gutter that is full of dirt can become heavy and can pull away from the building as well, creating another set of issues.
- Colder temperatures: Since you will want your premises to stay warm, prepare for colder temperatures by checking chimney and heating equipment. Have your chimney inspected and cleaned after the winter season and again at the beginning of fall to prevent possible chimney fires. Your HVAC system also needs to be inspected, and all ducts should be clear and ready for use. Also, change out all your filters in the system. If your household or business plans on using space heaters, make sure the equipment is in great shape and that everyone that uses them knows the proper way and time to do so. They should never be left on if there is no one in the room.
The team here at SERVPRO of Belle Meade/ West Nashville truly cares about your safety and the safety of your loved ones and your property. We are experts in water damage restoration as well as fire damage cleanup and restoration, and we are mold remediation specialists, too.
A WATER DAMAGE CHECKLIST FOR YOUR OFFICE
Here's what to do when water damage hits.
Once waters from flood or leaks recede and clean up has been done, most folks just want to get back into their business office and start rebuilding. However, one problem is that materials submerged in water have probably absorbed a large amount of water. Rebuilding or renovating too quickly after a flood can cause continuing problems like mold growth, insect infestations, and the deterioration of walls, flooring, wood and wall coverings. Flood waters are not going to be clean, either. Therefore, most porous building materials must be removed and replaced with new materials.
Here is a checklist to refer to if your office experiences water damage:
- Inspect for outside structural and electrical damage to determine if it is safe to enter. Fire hazards and gas leaks will need to be identified, as well. Use battery-powered light sources.
- Wear sturdy shoes, rubber gloves, and eye protection. Watch for fire ants, snakes, or other animals.
- If mold is present, wear a respirator that can filter spores.
- Contact your insurance adjuster immediately.
- Begin cleanup, salvage, and drying as soon as possible, and be sure to take photos for use for inventory. All steps suggested on this page can be taken before an adjuster arrives. Keep damaged materials for proof of loss.
- The adjuster will assess all office damage, and as the owner, you will need to sign a proof of loss statement.
- Check that all electric and gas services are turned off before entering the premises for the first time.
- Have an electrician check for grounds and other unsafe conditions before reconnecting the system.
Furnishings and Carpets
- Remove all furniture, bedding, and carpeting and bring it outdoors to be cleaned and dried (or discarded).
- Flooded carpets and rugs should be replaced since flood water may contain contaminants, and affected carpet pads should always be discarded and replaced. Remove these items within 48 hours after flooding subsides.
- Thoroughly dry the carpet and subfloor as quickly as possible. If carpet is installed when damp, it can mildew.
- All upholstered furniture and mattresses contaminated by flood water should be discarded, and solid wood, metal and plastic furniture may be cleaned and restored. Hose off any mud, then clean, sanitize, and let your furniture dry completely out of direct sunlight.
- Open flooded walls, even if they appear undamaged, to prevent mold, odor, and structural decay. Remove water from the structure as rapidly as possible and ventilate.
- Remove baseboards and cut holes in wallboard to drain uninsulated walls, and remove the interior surface of insulated walls to a point above water height. Discard flooded drywall. Remove and discard all wet fibrous insulation. Clean out mud. Wall studs and plates may be sprayed with disinfectant (1 cup bleach/gallon water) to kill any existing mold and fungi.
- Speed dry with dehumidifiers and fans. Leave walls open until they have thoroughly dried, which may take up to a month.
- Select replacement materials that will withstand future floods (such as rigid foam insulation, removable wainscoting, ceramic tile, etc.).
Here at SERVPRO of Belle Meade/West Nashville, we are experts at cleanups after water or fire damage, no matter the size of the event. If your office has been affected by water damage, either from a leak or a flood, we are here to help. We are mold remediation specialists, too!
SOURCES OF FIRE DAMAGE TO AVOID THIS SUMMER
Avoiding fire damage can be as simple as following a few preventive tips.
During the summer, we spend more time outdoors. We barbecue and use our firepits, or we have bonfires if we live in an area that is approved for them. We may spend time cleaning out our garages or getting our landscaping done, and these types of activities create trash that will need to be disposed of. This often entails a call to the city waste management department, with the trash then waiting curbside or near our homes or businesses for pickup. Renovation and construction projects often get scheduled for summer, too, and these also create waste that can take time to remove.
What do all of these scenarios have in common?
They can all become fire hazards.
One stray spark from a Fourth of July sparkler near a dry pile of wood from fencing or roofing can turn a fun night into a disaster, and a lack of good sense near a fire pit can change everything in a second. Here are a few tips to help you avoid fire damage this summer.
- Make sure your family and other loved ones understand fire safety before they start roasting marshmallows or cooking burgers.
- Schedule trash pickup immediately to avoid large amounts of dry material from sitting in your yard.
- Remove dry, dead vegetation from around your home or business premises so that if a fire breaks out this material won’t provide more fuel.
- Using propane tanks can be dangerous; make sure the person responsible for filling it and using the barbecue understands how to properly handle volatile fuel sources.
- Follow the laws of your city and county when it comes to the use of fire, and this includes fireworks. Many people ignore these regulations, but keep in mind that one stray spark on a roof can bring down a neighborhood.
Should the worst happen, SERVPRO of Belle Meade / West Nashville is here to help. We are experts in cleanups after fire or water damage, no matter the size of the issue, and we are also mold remediation specialists. Call us today for assistance.
WHAT DO WE MEAN BY MOLD REMEDIATION?
Mold remediation ensures that mold doesn't cause serious damage.
Mold can be found in many homes and businesses, creating the need for remediation and cleaning that is specific to this type of issue. Many kinds of mold are mostly harmless, causing few problems, unless someone in the home or business suffers from allergies or sinus issues. In that case, mold becomes a major issue, requiring complete removal, or as complete as is possible. This type of removal is officially known as mold remediation.
If you detect that telltale, musty odor in your home or business, call a professional right away to assess your situation and advise you on the best course of action. It may be that there is some discoloration on a wall or baseboard that looks like an old stain. If no one is complaining about respiratory issues or illnesses, it can be tempting to ignore it. Don’t. It takes the expertise of a mold remediation specialist to tell if the mold is dangerous or not. Call SERVPRO of Belle Meade / West Nashville.
Since microscopic mold spores exist naturally almost everywhere, indoors and outdoors, removing all mold from a home or business is impossible. Some restoration businesses advertise “mold removal” and even guarantee to remove all mold. This is a fallacy. A qualified restoration company understands the science behind mold and mold growth. SERVPRO Franchise Professionals have the training and expertise to remediate the mold in your home or business. Mold remediation focuses on getting mold levels back to normal, natural levels.
The word remediation is used to describe the act of remedying or reversing something, usually resulting in stopping environmental damage. The terms “mold abatement”, “mold removal”, and “mold remediation” are often used interchangeably, but they actually don’t mean quite the same thing.
If you need help with a mold issue, call us today. Here at SERVPRO of Belle Meade / West Nashville, we are ready to help with any kind of mold-related damage to your home or business. We are also cleanup experts, when you experience fire or water damage events, no matter the size of that event. We are proud to serve the West Nashville community.
SCHEDULING REGULAR CLEANING FOR YOUR HOTEL’S DRAPES, CARPETS, AND MORE
The presence of dirt, dust, allergens, pet dander, and other unhealthy contaminants in your hotel will build up over time, constantly circulated by your HVAC system, and then will be inhaled by your staff and guests. Older buildings also pose the risk of exposure to asbestos fibers and lead dust, along with other pathogens. Thorough, regular, and professional cleaning for your hotel is going to be an important factor in keeping your indoor air fresh, clean, and healthy.
Carpet, area rugs, drapes, blinds, and upholstered furniture all attract dust and dirt. These must be regularly cleaned to avoid buildup by removing ingrained dirt and dust, and deep stains in the fibers. Beyond making your hotel premises appear dingy, motions and impacts release contaminants into the air, adding to the problem.
The furniture, carpets, drapes, and blinds in your hotel are a major business investment. Without regular deep cleanings performed with professional equipment and procedures, they will begin to deteriorate. Carpet, upholstery, and drape fabric fibers break down, and blinds lose their smooth surface. You can help preserve the longevity of these valuable items with a regularly scheduled cleaning.
No matter how often or how carefully your staff mops, scrubs, and vacuums, dust and dirt are difficult to remove from corners, baseboards, and where the walls meet the floor. For a thorough cleaning, a professional cleaning company will have all the skills and equipment to make it happen.
Dust is made up of many different tiny particles, including dirt, animal dander, insect waste, pollen, textile and paper fibers, and animal feces. Rather than having these contaminants circulating in your hotel air, have all dust removed from the premises, including from blinds, drapes, carpets, and upholstery, by scheduling regular cleaning.
The SERVPRO professionals are familiar with cleaning every type of blind, including vinyl, aluminum, plantation, shutter, wood, roller shades, cellular shades, or custom blinds. We also are trained to handle all types of window dressing or curtain, and from the take down to the re-installation of all your hotel window treatments, you can rest assured that we will get the job done in a timely and professional manner.
As a hotel owner, you may have invested in quality carpet, Persian area rugs, or have carpeting or area rugs crafted from special fibers and dyes. The wrong cleaning process can be a disaster for these items. Keeping valuable carpeting and area rugs free from ingrained dirt, dust, and animal dander helps to prolong life and keep the fibers from deteriorating.
Every place of business needs ongoing deep cleaning, with regular more extensive services, and your hotel is no exception. Here at SERVPRO of Belle Meade / West Nashville, our full-service approach can make your life easier.
WHY YOU NEED TO ACT FAST WHEN WATER DAMAGE OCCURS
Even the smallest of leaks can result in a flood if left unattended, so it’s important to catch water leaks in your home or business and react immediately so that the damage doesn’t get worse.
Leaking pipes and a constantly running toilet are often the expensive culprits of water damage. Finding them sooner rather than later will be key in avoiding long term issues. If you find a leak, it’s important to act quickly to stop the spread of water and limit the damage. Mold begins to grow within 24 hours of exposure to excess water, so it’s vital to have a water damage cleanup plan in place for your company.
- Turn off the water to the affected area immediately. This keeps the situation from getting worse while waiting for the problem to be repaired. Turn off the water to just the affected fixture if possible, or the entire building if necessary.
- Call a licensed plumber. There are many who have 24-hour response numbers, and this may be a good one to have programmed into your cell phone’s contacts list.
- Move files, computer equipment, and other important assets to higher ground. It’s suggested that records should be stored electronically, with copies stored off site, in the cloud or in two different physical locations. If you’re concerned about cloud storage being hacked, there are personal cloud storage options available.
- Develop a contingency plan for staff workplaces in case the office is unusable for a few days. Options include working out of rented office space or telecommuting. This is useful in the event of any kind of disaster.
In the event of water damages of any kind, you need to act fast to remediate the issues. Water damage can ruin all kinds of materials, and your premises will suffer from deterioration and unpleasant odors. Remember, too, that once a mold colony gets established, it can never be completely removed, so it’s best to clean up the conditions it enjoys. Any damp area needs to be dried completely before 48 hours has passed, to make sure mold doesn’t gain a foothold. If you do experience water damage and its accompanying issues, you can call us here at SERVPRO of Belle Meade / West Nashville for help.
ODOR REMOVAL AND OTHER SERVICES YOU MIGHT NOT KNOW ABOUT
SERVPRO is well known across the nation for our fire and water damage cleanup services, and we are also tops in the mold remediation industry. But we also offer other services that you may not be aware of, so today we are going to share that information with you.
Here are some services that SERVPRO of West Nashville/Belle Meade provides in addition to our more well-known offerings:
- ODOR REMOVAL. We are experts in deodorization, and trained to identify and eliminate offensive odors. These kinds of odors can come from a number of sources both inside and outside a structure, and masking them or using other shortcuts won't work when your odor problem is serious or persistent. By identifying the cause of the odor and determining the conditions where it contacts surfaces, we can often remove it over time without a trace. Our technicians have access to several odor removal products capable of penetrating surfaces to neutralize any unpleasant odor thoroughly.
- BIOHAZARDS. Exposure to biological and chemical contaminants can pose serious health consequences, and a failure to properly remove such substances can contribute to unhealthy and dangerous environments. SERVPRO of Belle Meade / West Nashville is trained to safely remove biohazards and dispose of them properly in accordance with OSHA and health regulations. We are equipped with the necessary safety apparatus and cleaning products to handle biohazards and can help transform these unhealthy environments back into clean, safe homes and offices.
- VANDALISM/GRAFFITI. Vandalism and graffiti can range from relatively minor pranks to malicious destruction of property. Often simple acts of vandalism, like breaking a window, can cause significant water and mold damage if not addressed in a timely manner
- COMMERCIAL. First impressions certainly do matter, particularly in the world of business. The overall look of your commercial property will make a lasting first impression for your clients, so be sure that your property is always at its best. If your business has suffered from damages, whether water damage, fire damage, mold growth, or any other such disaster, that will present a poor image to both your current and your prospective clientele. When your Nashville commercial property is in need of professional cleaning or emergency restoration services, be sure to contact SERVPRO of Belle Meade/ West Nashville to help restore your property and maintain your best possible image.
No matter what you need, SERVPRO of Belle Meade / West Nashville is here to help.
Tornado Season Preparedness in Nashville
Tornado quick facts:
- Tornadoes can strike quickly, with little to no warning
- Tornadoes may appear almost transparent until dust and debris are picked up, or a cloud forms in the funnel
- Tornadoes are most likely to occur between 3pm and 9pm, but can occur at any time
- Southern states have peak tornado season from March through May, but as we have experienced here, they can happen at any time of the year
- The average forward speed of a tornado is 30 mph, but they can vary from stationary to 70 mph
- The average tornado moves southwest to northeast, but they have been known to move in any direction
Being prepared for any serious weather event is always a good idea, and understanding what you might experience will help you to figure out what will be best. It is important to have a tornado plan in place at home, at the office, or anywhere you may frequent. Know where you can quickly take shelter, and practice at home and at the office at least yearly. When a tornado watch is issued, start thinking about those safe places and what you may need to have ready if things get bad.
- Establish a plan for communication. Make sure your family or workforce knows how to get in contact with one another before, and after, disaster happens.
- Make sure your insurance is up to date. Don’t wait until the worst happens to find out that you aren’t covered.
- Ensure that your home or business is in the best repair possible. Doing this can help you to minimize damages.
- Have an evacuation plan in place. Make sure everyone you care about knows where to go in the event of truly bad weather. For a tornado event, heading to lower and interior areas away from glass and exterior entrances will be the best place to weather the storm.
In the event that a disaster strikes your home or business, the team here at SERVPRO of Belle Meade / West Nashville is ready to help. Call us today for help with recovering from a Middle Tennessee severe weather event.
CARING FOR YOUR APARTMENT COMPLEX CARPETS
Maintaining clean carpets can be one of the most difficult parts of rental living, and as an apartment complex owner, you are well aware of this. The carpets in your complex will be closely examined when your units are inspected by prospective tenants, and any signs of wear or damage will often be a deal-breaker.
There are some inexpensive steps that can help to protect carpets, and you can share these tips with your current tenants, which will help them live more comfortably while they rent from you.
- Documentation. Before any tenant moves in, make sure all existing stains, damage and wear is documented by examining the entire unit. Don’t forget closets and other storage areas, and make sure notation is made and photos are taken. If the prior tenant had children or pets (or both), use a blacklight for those hard-to-see stains. This inspection will be proof of the original state of the carpeting, so be detailed and thorough.
- High Traffic Area Protection. General day-to-day living will cause carpet wear, and that’s just reality. Encourage your tenants to protect high-traffic areas in their unit by letting them know that removing shoes before entry is one of the best ways to control carpet breakdown. You may even decide to install shoe organizers in each unit to make it easier for your tenants, allowing them to keep entrance ways organized and clean and encouraging everyone to stop tracking dirt down the hallways. Inexpensive mat runners can be laid down in these areas for added protection and a decorative factor, too.
- Accidents. Direct your tenants to do what they can to protect the carpet before a potential problem arises to avoid accidental damage, such as during painting or other decorative projects, or perhaps for parties and in areas that children use regularly. Throwing down a tarp or area rugs can go a long way towards protecting apartment complex carpeting. Even if your tenants are tidy, accidents happen.
- Regular Maintenance. One of the best ways to keep carpets in good shape is to practice regular maintenance. Give your tenants a list of the best cleaning practices and agents for them to use, and update them regularly with tips for carpet care, as well as for other items in their unit. Most apartment complexes have a community website these days, so a weekly blog or newsletter can help keep people on top of the latest cleaning tips.
- Professional Cleaning. As a good business move, as well as a service to your tenants, regular professional cleaning of your apartment complex carpets will help to keep all your flooring in great condition and extend the life of each unit’s carpet. It may seem like a big expense, but if done regularly it can help save you the much bigger expense of replacing carpet sooner than might otherwise be necessary.
- Pets. If your apartment complex allows pets, make sure that pets are fully house-trained.
You might want to institute fines if stains or considerable wear-and-tear are evident in your apartment complex units due to tenant negligence. It might sound harsh, but replacing carpets often is expensive and will lead to higher rental fees in the future.
Here at SERVPRO of Belle Meade / West Nashville, we can help if your flooring sustains damage from water or fire. We are also mold remediation experts. Call us today!
KEEPING YOUR TENANTS INFORMED ABOUT FIRE DAMAGE RESTORATION
As the owner of a commercial property with tenants to think about, you will want to keep them informed about what to expect if the worst were to happen, such as a fire. It will take time to get everything back to normal, and your tenants will appreciate knowing what to expect. Every fire damage event is a little bit different and will require a unique solution, but the general fire damage restoration process is always pretty much the same.
Today we will list the steps that are usually taken so that you are equipped to share all necessary updates and information with your lessees and tenants.
FIRST STEP: Emergency Contact. The restoration process begins when you call the SERVPRO National Call Center, which is staffed 24 hours a day. Our representative will ask a series of questions regarding the fire damage event that will help us dispatch the nearest SERVPRO Franchise Professional team with the appropriate equipment and resources.
SECOND STEP: Inspection and Assessment. Our Professionals will carefully inspect and test adjoining rooms of your property to determine the extent of the fire, smoke, and soot damage. This step is crucial to developing a plan of action.
THIRD STEP: Board-Up and Tarp: Fire damage can often compromise windows, walls, and roofs. To maintain security and to protect against further damage, SERVPRO will board up missing windows and walls and place tarps on damaged roofs.
FOURTH STEP: Water Removal/Drying: The water removal process begins almost immediately and removes the majority of the water. They will then use dehumidifiers and air movers to remove the remaining water and complete the drying process.
FIFTH STEP. Smoke Removal, Cleaning and Sanitizing. SERVPRO uses specialized equipment and techniques to remove smoke and soot from ceilings, walls, and other surfaces. They will clean all of the restorable items and structures that were damaged by the fire. They use a variety of cleaning techniques to restore your belongings to pre-fire condition. They’re also trained to remove odors using industrial air scrubbers and fogging equipment.
FINAL STEP. Restoration is the final step—getting your home or business to its pre-fire condition. 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.
If your home or business suffers from fire or water damage, SERVPRO of Belle Meade / West Nashville is always here to help. We are also experts at mold remediation, too!