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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

Archived Blog Posts

How To Eliminate Cigarette Odors From Your Home

10/7/2021 (Permalink)

Ozone generator An ozone generator can remove smoke odor from your property.

How to Get Rid of Cigarette Odors in Your Home

It is commonly accepted that cigarette smoke is an odor that adheres to surfaces when the smoke cloud abates. But the truth is, the smoke is a combination of odorous chemicals that can cling to surfaces for months after the haze is gone. Many people in Mascot, TN, try scrubbing, repainting, and home deodorization to remove the smell, but even after those efforts, the odor can still linger. If the smell haunts you when you enter your home, here are some helpful hints on eliminating it once and for all.

Chemical Compounds

The reason the cigarette smoke sticks to your walls and carpets is that many of the chemicals are solvents that can permeate your home’s surfaces, including wood. When you clean, it often cannot reach the odor-causing chemicals because they can be deep below the layer being scrubbed.

Ozone Treatment

There are no magical odor-removing tools, but ozone home deodorization comes close. As the ozone sprays into the room, it breaks down odors at the molecular level. Ozone can treat:

  • Bacteria
  • Germs
  • Spores
  • Microbes

The molecules causing the offensive odor can chemically react with the ozone particles. Therefore, after cleaning the room, the ozone treatment can usually eliminate the remaining unpleasant scents and kill them for good. However, if carpets or woodwork have not been cleaned sufficiently after being in a heavy smoke-laden room, the unpleasant cigarette odor may eventually come back.

Professional Removal

Ozone can be a respiratory irritant, so consider leaving the generator-fueled operation to a professional odor removal crew. If the smell is unpleasant enough, even after cleaning, the ozone treatment may take up to 3 days. During that time, all pets, plants, and people may need to be relocated until the ozone removal crew completes the work.

When lingering cigarette smoke becomes too much, fight back with a home deodorization. Ozone can help remove odors and return your clean-smelling home to you.

Preventing Water Damage: The Practices and Tools Necessary to Protect Your Business

9/26/2021 (Permalink)

Leaking pipe. It is essential to maintain these elements to ensure prolonged protection for your business.

A broken pipe can cause massive flooding in a business, and the cost of water repair can be significant; however, depending on who is deemed responsible, your insurance company may not cover the damage. Therefore, you may want to take every preventative measure possible to protect your business and its operation.

1. Routine Maintenance

Most plumbing issues can be prevented with routine maintenance. With regular sewer cleaning and annual inspections of drains and other collection systems, most minor problems can be found and fixed for little cost.

2. Installation of Pumps and Valves

Beyond routine maintenance, you can install sump pumps and backflow valves to prevent and control potential sewer backup and flooding events. However, these items also should be inspected regularly to ensure proper functionality, and sump pumps should have battery backups in case of power outages.

3. Location of Generator Fuel Tanks

In the event of a broken pipe or a flood, generator fuel tanks may cause water contamination. For this reason, you may want to install generators in elevated areas to not only prevent possible water contamination but also to ensure a working generator. If generators are located in a building’s flood zones, the increasing water level may interfere with the generator’s mechanics.

4. Parking Lot and Sidewalk Grading

As exterior water lines can also burst, you may want to ensure that any concrete surface is graded away from your building’s interior. Incorrect grading can lead to the increased flooding risk, which can result in further interior damage.

While Knoxville, TN, has many restoration companies in the event of a broken pipe, it is better for a business to avoid interruption due to disaster; therefore, it may be in your best interest, as the owner, to install every possible preventative measure. However, it is also essential to maintain these elements to ensure prolonged protection for your business.

What To Do If Your Flight is Canceled Due to Weather

9/19/2021 (Permalink)

Tree fallen on house and the words "Storm Damage?" If you are dealing with a canceled flight in Knoxville, TN, or any other location, these storm tips can help you resolve the situation.

Travel delays can range from a minor inconvenience to a major issue depending on your circumstances and level of preparation. If adverse weather results in a canceled flight, use these storm tips to reschedule your trip.

Find Your Flight Information

You will need to be able to inform your airline about the details of your itinerary to reschedule flights and determine your options for compensation. Find your flight numbers and keep them on hand when contacting your airline. An airline agent is likely to ask you for your

• Full name
• Destination
• Flight numbers
• Airports for connecting flights

Having this information ready can save time when rescheduling your trip.

Skip the Line and Call the Airline

If you are stranded at an airport, other passengers on your canceled flight may form a line at the gate counter. It is almost always easier and faster to call the airline from your cell phone or another phone in the airport. Be sure to have your tickets or boarding passes ready to provide any information the agent may need. Depending on whether the storm is in your current location, the airport may also experience power or data outages or other difficulties.

Check the Cancelation Policy

Many airlines compensate passengers for cancelations due to adverse weather. The company may reimburse you, offer rescheduling services at no additional charge, or provide a meal or hotel room, depending on how long your travel plans are delayed due to weather.

If you are dealing with a canceled flight in Knoxville, TN, or any other location, these storm tips can help you resolve the situation. Travelers should also make sure they have the contact information for ticketing services on the airline they are flying. If a storm is expected to affect your home, you may also want to look up the number for a residential storm damage restoration service.

Our SERVPRO of North Knoxville Commitment

9/17/2021 (Permalink)

restoration emergency plan Our commitment to our community!

At SERVPRO of North Knoxville our vision is to be the premier mitigation and restoration service provider and the flagship SERVPRO franchise in the greater Knoxville area and the state of Tennessee. We will offer our customers world-class service, sensitivity to their needs, respect for their property, intelligent solutions to their disaster restoration problems and an enhanced customer experience.

Based on our 18 years of experience, we have the experience and knowledge to handle your restoration project. But we also go beyond just fire and water restoration and clean up. We do duct cleaning, carpet cleaning, and mold mitigation. Many apartment complexes in this area use our services to maintain and prepare their units. 

SERVPRO of North Knoxville is here to serve you and all of your needs.

How To Keep Mold and Mildew Out of Your Bathroom

9/14/2021 (Permalink)

Mold growth in bathroom. Proactively managing moisture is key to preventing bathroom mildew and mold in any Knoxville, TN, home.

Your bathroom’s sinks, toilet, tub, and shower are frequently exposed to water. Because mold and mildew thrive in moist environments, this room can be a potential breeding ground for both organisms. To reduce your risk of bathroom mildew and mold, follow these tips.

1. Increase Air Circulation

Taking a hot shower can create a high humidity problem inside the room. Using bathroom fans during and after your shower can reduce the humidity level as well as condensation buildup on mirrors and other surfaces.

2. Dry Your Shower

You should wipe and dry your shower’s surface after use to eliminate pooled water and excessive moisture.

3. Routinely Clean the Shower

You can also reduce bathroom mildew by routinely cleaning your shower and tub. This includes wiping down walls and bathmats with a cleaning solution. If possible, install a washable shower curtain that you can routinely clean with your washing machine.

4. Avoid Piles of Wet Clothing

Cloth is porous and offers many hiding places for mold spores. To avoid mold and mildew growth, you should hang towels up to air dry after use and avoid piling wet clothing, towels, and washcloths in one location.

5. Use Mold-Resistant Caulking

It’s not uncommon for water to pool in the area surrounding sinks, tubs, and showers. You can waterproof these spots using mold-resistant caulking. You should also routinely inspect caulking for signs of deterioration, such as cracking and replace as necessary.

6. Address Drafty Windows

Your bathroom’s window sills are also potentially susceptible to mold and mildew growth because cold drafts around the window can produce condensation. To eliminate drafts, apply plastic film or weather stripping around the window.

A Manageable Issue

Proactively managing moisture is key to preventing bathroom mildew and mold in any Knoxville, TN, home. In the event of a burst pipe or overflowing toilet, a quick and efficient cleanup is imperative. If your bathroom sustains significant water damage, a professional cleanup and restoration crew can provide timely assistance and help ensure mold does not find hiding spots inside your saturated bathroom.

North Knoxville 24 Hour Emergency Water Damage Service

9/6/2021 (Permalink)

water damage 24 hour emergency water damage service!

SERVPRO of North Knoxville is available 24 hours a day for water emergencies, large or small. When you are dealing with water damage, immediate action is crucial. A delay of just a few hours can greatly increase the severity of the water damage.

We Answer the Phone Ready to Help
Call Today - 865-947-9992

We understand that when you call us, you may be feeling confused, stressed, and vulnerable. You need an expert to guide you through this crisis. SERVPRO of North Knoxville has the specific water damage training and experience to help you through this tough time. We specialize in water damage restoration—in fact, it's the cornerstone of our business.

What to Expect

When you call, we will ask several questions regarding your water damage emergency. These questions will help us determine what equipment and resources to bring, including how many trained SERVPRO Professionals may be needed.

Our SERVPRO Representative will ask several questions:

  • Your name and contact information
  • Your insurance information (if applicable)
  • The street address of the water-damaged home or business
  • When did the flooding or water damage occur?
  • What caused the water damage (if known)?
  • Is there electricity available (on-site)?

About SERVPRO of North Knoxville

SERVPRO of North Knoxville specializes in the cleanup and restoration of residential and commercial property after a fire, smoke or water damage event. Our staff is highly trained in property damage restoration. From initial and ongoing training at SERVPRO’s corporate training facility to regular IICRC-industry certification, rest assured our staff is equipped with the knowledge to restore your property.

What Do Storm Warnings Really Mean?

8/13/2021 (Permalink)

BASIC WEATHER TERMS:

Warning A warning is issued when a hazardous weather or hydrologic event is occurring, imminent or likely. A warning means weather conditions pose a threat to life or property. People in the path of the storm need to take protective action.

Watch A watch is used when the risk of a hazardous weather or hydrologic event has increased significantly, but its occurrence, location or timing is still uncertain. It is intended to provide enough lead time so those who need to set their plans in motion can do so. A watch means that hazardous weather is possible. People should have a plan of action in case a storm threatens and they should listen for later information and possible warnings especially when planning travel or outdoor activities.

Advisory An advisory is issued when a hazardous weather or hydrologic event is occurring, imminent or likely. Advisories are for less serious conditions than warnings, that cause significant inconvenience and if caution is not exercised, could lead to situations that may threaten life or property.

FIRE ALERTS:

Red Flag

This is a fire weather program which highlights the onset of critical weather conditions

conducive to extensive wildfire occurrences.

Red Flag Warning

A term used by fire-weather forecasters to call attention to limited weather conditions of particular importance that may result in extreme burning conditions. It is issued when it is an on-going event or the fire weather forecaster has a high degree of confidence that Red Flag criteria will occur within 24 hours of issuance. Red Flag criteria occurs whenever a geographical area has been in a dry spell for a week or two, or for a shorter period , if before spring green-up or after fall color, and the National Fire Danger Rating System (NFDRS) is high to extreme and the following forecast weather parameters are forecasted to be met:

1) a sustained wind average 15 mph or greater

2) relative humidity less than or equal to 25 percent and

3) a temperature of greater than 75 degrees F.

In some states, dry lightning and unstable air are criteria. A Fire Weather Watch may be issued prior to the Red Flag Warning.

Prepare Yourself for Fire Damage

8/13/2021 (Permalink)

fire damage Prepare yourself for fire damages.

Tips from FEMA for preparing your family, home, and business from the threat of wildfires:

  • Get an emergency supply kit, which includes items like non-perishable food, water, a battery- powered or hand- crank radio, extra flashlights, and batteries. You may want to prepare a portable kit and keep it in your car.
  • Make a family emergency plan. Your family may not be together when disaster strikes, so it is important to know how you will contact one another, how you will get back together, and what you will do in case of an emergency.
  • Protect your property from wildfires by designing and landscaping with wildfire safety in mind.
  • Learn about the emergency service plans that have been established in your area by your state and local government. In any emergency, always listen to the instructions given by local emergency management officials.
  • Ask SERVPRO of North Knoxville about starting a Disaster Recovery Plan for your business.

What You Should Do if Pipe Bursts in Your Home

8/5/2021 (Permalink)

If a pipe bursts in your home, the first thing you should do is turn off your water supply. Try to contain the damage and stop the issue from escalating any further. If you think there is a risk of electrical shock, shut off your electricity. The next thing you should do is call a plumber. And finally, while waiting for help to arrive, try to remove as much excess water as possible. Standing water can cause further damage to flooring and drywall. Also, you should ensure the area is dry and free from any moisture. Moisture can cause bacterial growth. 

If this happens in your home, call SERVPRO of North Knoxville. We will help alleviate your worries and get you back to pre loss conditions. Financing options are available. 

How To Protect Your Home During the Roof Mitigation Process

8/1/2021 (Permalink)

Roof missing from a house Severe damage to the roof due to high winds.

Roof Mitigation Process

After storm damage takes its toll on your home in Halls Crossroads, TN, high winds, hail or torrential rains are likely to have left the structure of your roof compromised. One of the first things you should think about is how to prevent further roof damage. Storm restoration experts can help you safeguard your home as one of the first steps of the mitigation process.

What Are You Protecting It From?

Storms cause harm in several ways. Your home may suffer wind damage when trees fall onto the roof or objects are hurled through windows. Heavy rains can cause leaks, and if those leaks aren't remediated in a timely manner, mold can start to grow. After a storm has damaged your home, you need to protect it from additional issues:

  • More rainwater
  • Debris
  • Animals
  • Other people

Your roof may not be the first place you think of when you imagine a breach of your home, but unwanted objects, substances and guests can sneak in wherever there is a hole.

How Do You Protect It?

Roof damage is not always a quick fix. Because the mitigation process could take a while, it is important to protect the interior of your home by covering any holes in the roof, windows, siding or skylights. Broken skylights and windows can often be covered with industrial transparent plastic. This still allows a little natural light to get through but protects your home until the glass can be replaced. If your roof is leaking, the restoration professionals will most likely use tarps to cover the holes and keep more water from getting in. Larger holes may have to be boarded up until they can be repaired.

If a storm leaves your home with roof damage, mitigation professionals may have their hands full with all the work in the area, which means your home may not get repaired as quickly as you would like. In the meantime, it's important to protect it by blocking off the damaged areas to keep more damage from occurring.

What Can You Expect From a Fire Cleanup?

7/22/2021 (Permalink)

White cabinet with smoke damage in a kitchen room. Fire and smoke damage can do a lot of harm to your home.

What Should You Expect After a Fire?

In Strawberry Plains, TN you may need to go through a fire cleanup after flames have erupted in your home. Calling a residential fire damage crew can make this process easier. However, you may still want to know what to expect before the professionals get to your house. Use this quick guide to prepare for the cleanup techniques used to mitigate fire and smoke damage.

• Assessment: You may want the cleanup to get started as quickly as possible. However, the crew will better know what to do after an initial inspection is done on your house.
• Mitigation: Soot damage isn't the only thing you have to worry about after a fire. The flames can leave your home susceptible to other types of damage. That's why many professionals will board up windows, doors and holes to ensure rain and intruders cannot affect your house. Putting tarps on the roof may also be necessary.
• Removal: The first removal that may be needed is water removal. When firefighters put out flames, they use copious amounts of water to ensure your home does not stay ablaze. Your cleanup crew may need to remove standing water and start drying out your belongings. Next, the team may remove signs of smoke damage from the surfaces in your home.
• Sanitization: An important part of smoke cleaning is the sanitizing of your belongings. Clothes, electronics and furniture may have been affected by the soot, so these items may need to get cleaned by professionals.
• Repair: Once the damaged items have been removed from your home and the other surfaces have been cleaned, the crew has to start returning things to normal. This often means repairing siding, windows, roofing, flooring and walls. Because the team wants you to feel comfortable, this may even include painting walls and installing new carpet.

Fire and smoke damage can do a lot of harm to your home. Residential cleanup crews go through a laborious process to help you get your place back to normal.

How to Prepare Yourself for Fire Disaster

7/12/2021 (Permalink)

House on fire Fire damage in a home.

Here at SERVPRO of North Knoxville, we are the ones to call if any sort of loss does occur, but we also want to provide our customers and community with resources to minimalize risks that could cause a loss.   

Steps to Prepare

The first way to prepare yourself is by knowing where to be the most cautious and aware. The 4 most common types of fires are Kitchen, Electrical, Heater, and Smoking-Related. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) reports that in 2018 there were:

  • 192,700 cooking fires
  • 35,700 heating fires.
  • 28,600 Other unintentional, careless fires.
  • 25,700 electrical malfunction fires.

The second way to prepare yourself is to be informed about some of the awareness information about fires.

The leading cause of death in a fire is asphyxiation, by a three-to-one ratio over burns. Fire consumes the oxygen in the air while increasing the concentration of deadly carbon monoxide and other toxic gases in the atmosphere. Inhaling carbon monoxide can cause loss of consciousness or death within minutes.

1. The heat from a hostile fire exceeds anything to which a person is normally exposed. A fully developed room fire has temperatures over 1,100 degrees Fahrenheit.

2. Fire generates a black, impenetrable smoke that blocks vision and stings the eyes. It is impossible to navigate through such smoke, so fire drill participants should practice evacuating buildings by at least two routes.

3. Fire generates a black, impenetrable smoke that blocks vision and stings the eyes. It is impossible to navigate through such smoke, so fire drill participants should practice evacuating buildings by at least two routes.

If you want more statistics on residential house fires click here.

Here are the final ways to ensure you are prepared for a fire disaster:

  • Develop a Family Disaster Plan.
  • If smoke alarms are not already in place, install them outside each sleeping area and on each additional level of your home in accordance with local codes. 
  • Draw a floor plan of your home; mark two fire escape routes for each room.
  • Consider escape ladders for sleeping areas on the second or third floor.
  • Burglar bars and locks that block outside window entry must be easy to open from the inside. If a key is required to open bars or locks, keep a key near each window to use for fire escape. Quick-release devices are available for security bars. If smoke or fire is blocking the main exit, you must be able to use your alternate routes quickly.
  • Select a safe outside meeting place for everyone to meet after escaping from a fire.
  • Conduct a home fire drill at least twice a year with all members of your household. 

Tips for Repairing a Leaky Faucet

7/12/2021 (Permalink)

Leaking tap Replacing a leaking faucet is a job you can likely do on your own.

Of all the problems you could have in your home, a leaking faucet may seem pretty far down the list. At the very least, this can be an annoying issue, but if you don’t take care of it, the leak can turn into something worse and lead to flooding. Luckily, you can fix this situation without a lot of expertise.

Figure Out What Type of Faucet You Have

If you want to put an end to that maddening dripping faucet that keeps you up at night, first determine the style of faucet in your Knoxville, TN, home. Typically, you’ll find one of four kinds:

  • Compression
  • Ceramic disk
  • Cartridge
  • Ball

Take the Initial Steps

Regardless of your style of faucet, for a fixed leak, you should start by turning off the water supply to your sink. You should find a knob underneath your sink along the pipes. Turn the knob clockwise. Also, make sure you plug the drain.

Get a Replacement

When you’ve got a leaking faucet, you will most likely need to get new parts. This may require that you stop by your local hardware store to pick up an entirely new kit. Make sure you purchase a kit that has the correct type of faucet.

Remove the Old Parts

Carefully begin removing the current faucet piece by piece. You will need tools such as a screwdriver, wrench and pliers to do this. You can then try cleaning some of the seals in vinegar for a few hours, but usually, you will need to replace all the parts.

Install the New Kit

Following the instructions on the kit you have purchased, install the new unit. If you follow the steps carefully, you shouldn’t have much of a problem doing this. Once you’ve installed it, turn the water on slowly. If you notice any further leaks, turn the water off, and revisit the installation steps.

Replacing a leaking faucet is a job you can likely do on your own. Don’t put it off, though, or the leak could lead to water damage. You would then need to call a restoration specialist to help with the cleanup.

Are Storm Damage and Flooding the Same?

7/12/2021 (Permalink)

Entrance of a building flooded Flooded building in Mascot, TN

Storm Damage vs Flood Damage

Torrential rain, golf ball sized hail and high winds invade your business in Mascot, TN. These events cause water damage inside your property. There is flooding on the ground floor, so is this considered flood damage? Or is it storm damage because the storm caused the flooding? You are not alone if you find this confusing. Read below to understand the difference between the two.

Flood Damage

To an insurance company, there is a clear-cut difference between water damage caused by a flood and water damage caused by a storm. If you have flood insurance for your property, the following indicates that it will likely cover the damage:

  • Your business and at least one other property (or two or more acres) are normally dry but are suddenly and temporarily flooded.
  • A natural source causes the floodwaters, such as a hurricane storm surge or mudflow. Any other sudden accumulation of water rising up into your commercial property is considered a flood, including heavy rainfall that saturates and seeps up from the ground into homes or businesses.

Storm Damage

Storms cause a myriad of problems, not limited to water and wind damage. The following are common types of commercial problems caused by a storm:

  • Heavy winds, rain, or hail may crack or stress the windows, foundation, or roofing material, leading to water getting in. When the water damage is caused by falling rain that does not rise up from the ground into your property, it is considered caused by the storm even if the result is floodwater inside your business.
  • The damage from winds, rain or other events only impact your business, not necessarily the surrounding areas.

Whether storm damage or flood damage ravages your commercial property in Mascot, TN, storm and water restoration specialists are your first line of defense. Depending on the cause of damage and your specific policy, your commercial insurance may or may not provide coverage.

4 Ways to Keep Plants Free of Mildew

7/12/2021 (Permalink)

Plant with mildew Avoid plant mildew.

4 Ways to Keep Plants Free of Mildew

Homeowners in Corryton, TN, know that humidity and wet conditions are part of the location. Bringing nature indoors is a great way to freshen the air and add charm to your home. Unfortunately, the outdoor environment may still lead to plant mildew and mold. While eventually needing the help of a water, mold and mildew damage company may be unavoidable, below are four tips to minimize it.

1. Monitor Humidity Levels
Even indoors, humidity levels can rise quickly. That is especially true in the kitchen, bathroom and basement. While fans can help, it is recommended to use a dehumidifier. Depending on your HVAC system, you may have settings that can help keep levels low throughout the home. If possible, keep levels below 50% but above 30%.

2. Circulate Fresh Air
When trying to avoid plant mildew, ventilation is key. On days when the outdoor air seems just right, open the windows to get air circulating. Using fans is another way to ensure that air is moving around the home and not staying stagnate. Proper airflow is also a key way to minimize areas of the home staying moist, which may quickly turn into breeding grounds for bacteria.

3. Dry Wet Areas
No matter which fungi you are trying to avoid, any excess moisture makes that much more difficult to achieve. From small spills to areas prone to condensation, ensuring they are regularly dried and cleaned helps keep fungi at bay. Appliances should also be regularly inspected, especially water heaters and washers, to ensure that no water is pooling.

4. Avoid Over Fertilizing
When it comes to mildew growth on plants, fertilizing is often another culprit. Depending on the type being used, it can have high nitrogen levels that may welcome unwanted growth. There are organic options available that may provide what you need without raising the risk of fungi growth.
While plant mildew may be annoying, it also is an indicator that the moisture levels in your home aren’t quite right. The above tips may help your plants thrive and your home environment fresh and enjoyable.

Spring Storm Ready

7/5/2021 (Permalink)

Only in East Tennessee can we get all 4 seasons in one week! But the season we always need to be on the watch for is Spring.

Spring time here in the Valley can be tumultuous at best. Since we always seem to have a season of highs & lows (high/low temps, high number of days with/without rain, etc.) there has more than likely been a lot of wear and tear on our communities homes. SERVPRO of North Knoxville suggests a simple property walk around.

 Check your storm kit

- Stock an emergency kit with water, non-perishable food, a first-aid kit, flashlights and extra batteries, and a battery-operated radio in case your power goes out.

Check your siding/brickwork

- Give close inspection to any gaps or missing runs of mortar. Wind and water always find a way in, so be sure to snap back any loose pieces, and fill in any gaps.

Check your roof

- Make sure you don't have any loose or missing shingles. 

Check your HVAC unit

-Make sure that your unit hasn't become clogged with leaves over the fall, and that the area around the unit is clean and removed of debris. Make sure to have SERVPRO of North Knoxville come to give a thorough inspection.

Check your air filter

- The air quality in your home is very important, so make sure you're breathing the cleanest air possible by changing your filter every month. This also helps with the performance of your HVAC system.

Check the surrounding trees

- Mother Nature loves to play pick up sticks, so make sure you don't have any widowmakers lurking around your property with it's eyes on your house! When rain is plentiful, things can easily shift and all it will take is one good wind to huff, and puff, and ruin your day!

Check your flowerbeds

- Make sure nothing has decided to take up residence in your flowerbeds over the winter that you don't approve of. 

Know where your Cut-offs are

- In case you need to shut off your power/water/gas due to an emergency, go ahead and take note of your shut off locations for your property.

Reducing your risk of damage is always a good thing, but you can never prepare for everything. So if disaster strikes, and you need us, be sure to give us a call! We're here 24/7 to make it "Like it never even happened."

Restoring Your Knoxville Commercial Property After A Water Damage Event

6/9/2021 (Permalink)

commercial water damage Knoxville commercial water damage.

Flooding and water damage events at Knoxville commercial properties are often complex with numerous issues that require a knowledgeable and flexible response. Whether we’re dealing with a relatively small water cleanup scenario or a large scale event, we work quickly to assess each unique situation and isolate the damaged area. In many instances, normal operations can continue in a temporary space while we restore your facility.

Restoring Commercial Properties Presents Unique Challenges

Our professionals are trained to be mindful of legal and environmental concerns and strive to fully restore the damaged area while working within your budgetary constraints. We understand that every hour spent cleaning up is an hour of lost revenue and productivity. So when an emergency situation arises in your business, give us a call and we’ll be there fast with the help you need.

About SERVPRO of North Knoxville

SERVPRO of North Knoxville specializes in the cleanup and restoration of commercial and residential property after a water damage event. Our staff is highly trained in property damage restoration. From initial and ongoing training at SERVPRO’s corporate training facility to regular IICRC-industry certification, rest assured our staff is equipped with the knowledge to restore your property.

Why Do Pipes Burst in the Summer?

6/7/2021 (Permalink)

Burst pipe, flooded crawlspace Water damage in crawlspace due to burst pipe.

When you hear about pipes bursting it is assumed it’s because of freezing temperatures, well that is the case most of the time but pipes can be faulty in the summer months as well.  Yes, its highly unlikely extreme temperatures and increased usage can lead the pipes to burst.  SERVPRO of North Knoxville wants our customers to be able to have tips and knowledge to help prevent it from happening!

Extreme Temperatures

With summertime comes less rainfall and harsh heat which can make the land and soil extraordinarily dry.  This makes the soil looser and makes the pipes more susceptible to movement which can lead to breakage. The breakage is more likely to happen on the route of the pipes from the road to your home, rather than inside your home. While you can’t control the weather, you can decrease the amount of water usage during extreme temperatures to alleviate the pressure on your system.

Increased Consumption

Who wants a pipe burst to put a damper on their summer? No one, right?  We know that during the summer months you may have a sprinkler,  a garden,  hanging flowers;  all of which require water.  We are just as big of fans for summertime festivities as our customers and community members, with the increase of consumption can lead to failing pipes if your system hasn’t been updated or recently checked recently.  Another way to minimize the chance of a pipe bursting is to make sure that there isn’t any warping due to the cold weather in winter, to ensure your system can keep up with summer demands.

If any loss is to occur no matter the time of year, SERVPRO of North Knoxville is here to help and will make it “Like it never even happened.”

Why SERVPRO of North Knoxville is your key to cleaner air

6/4/2021 (Permalink)

trimming trees The key to cleaner air in North Knoxville!

As the weather cools, people will spend more time indoors. Do you have family coming to visit for the Holidays? SERVPRO of North Knoxville can get your HVAC system ready with a good cleaning. According to the National Air Duct Cleaning Association (NADCA):

"Our health is affected by the air we breathe. In recent years, as Americans have become more health conscious, increased attention has been focused on the quality of air in the indoor environment.

Research indicates that people spend approximately 90 percent of their time indoors. Thus, for many people, the risks to health may be greater due to exposure to air pollution indoors than outdoors.

Remember, the HVAC mechanical system is the lungs of the building."

So call SERVPRO of North Knoxville at 865-947-9992 to schedule an inspection of the cleanliness of your HVAC system.

Importance of an Emergency Readiness Profile (ERP)

6/2/2021 (Permalink)

Servpro logo. Emergency  Ready Profile SERVPRO Emergency Readiness Profile

Importance of an ERP in your Business

Will you be prepared in the event of an emergency at your business? How do you shut off the water supply to your building? Do you know where all of your electrical sub-panels are located? These are the questions that we ask every day at SERVPRO North Knoxville.

Building emergencies can happen at any time and to anyone. Creating a contingency plan for when that happens is crucial to getting back in business and recovering from setbacks. Over 50% of businesses never recover after a disaster and we want to help make sure you are as prepared as possible for when disaster strikes. SERVPRO has created a program that allows one of our trained professionals to come to your business and create an Emergency Ready Profile (ERP). 

Our Emergency Ready Profiles document things in your building including electrical shutoffs, fire extinguishers, water mains, and much more. It has a place for details regarding who to contact in the event of an emergency, account numbers for your utilities, and other services as well as the ability to add site-specific information. We see the ERP as a living document because of the ease of access and ability to make changes at any time and from anywhere. Because of this design, if you have a structural change such as an addition or add electrical or HVAC components to the building, you can easily update the ERP with the new information. Of course, SERVPRO is always happy to come out and do this for you!

The ERP comes with both online accessibility as well as an application that you can download to your tablet or smartphone. SERVPRO has very carefully designed this program with heavy-duty security measures including password protection, secured mobile data, secured data in transit, and a 256-bit encrypted TLS 1.2 Triple-DES SHA256 connection. In short, your information is well protected and you can sleep well knowing that you are prepared in the event of an emergency. This can be stored on a single device or multiple devices with the profile owner’s approval. We recommend that you only share your password and username with someone you trust, and oftentimes this means members of management, security staff, and key-holders of your company. 

If you are interested in the ERP program and would like to have a representative meet with you to discuss your needs, please contact us and we will be happy to assist you. 

Stay Safe. Stay Ready.

Emergency Readiness Plan

6/2/2021 (Permalink)

People escape to fire exit door Practice your procedures.

Emergency Readiness Plan

What is an emergency readiness plan and why should your business have one? An emergency readiness plan is standard to facilitate and organize employees' actions during workplace emergencies. It is required by OSHA to have these safety plans worked out and for employees to know where to find them. The plans cover  the following:

  • Procedures for reporting emergencies
  • Procedures for each type of evacuation and the route to be taken
  • Procedures to account for all employees after evacuation
  • Procedures to be followed by employees attempting to rescue others
  • The name, job title, and contact information of people who need to be aware of these emergency situations

If you have fewer than 10 employees within your company, the plan does not need to be written out. However, expectations and guidelines should be clear so that everybody knows what to do, where to go, and who to contact. Having an ERP boosts your company's capability to recover from financial losses including damages to equipment. If all employees know what action to take, they should be able to assist in assuring that the damage does not spread. Delegating different duties to employees shows them that you trust them in these situations. It takes the entire team to guarantee that everybody is safe. Empowering employees to play a vital role unifies the company as a whole. 

All employees should know where to find the plan of action and practice different scenarios. These plans are not useful if you do not practice them. The last thing you are going to do if the building is on fire is lookup protocol. Practicing different procedures sharpens your skills and ensures you are ready for anything. The more you know about your companies procedures, the more successful you will be in an emergency situation. 

How To Prevent Mold After Flooding

5/20/2021 (Permalink)

Mold growth on a cinema chair Mold growth found in a cinema chair after flood damage.

Prevent Mold From Growing After Flooding

Mold growth is something that can strike businesses after a storm. When you don't want to pay for a storm remediation company to visit your company in Heiskell, TN, you should take measures into your own hands. Here are some tips that can help you prevent mold from growing in your business after flooding.

Clean Up the Damage
If you have health effects, dealing with flood damage and mold growth is not something that you want to undertake. However, if you don't suffer from health effects, you need to clean up the damage by doing the following:

  • Clean up the water
  • Remove wet porous items
  • Clean wet surfaces with detergent
  • Store damaged items elsewhere
  • Use bleach for tough stains

Wear Protective Gear
If you are attempting to clean up mold growth, you need to take some safety precautions. While you probably don't have a complete hazmat suit, you likely do have some gear that can help. For instance, long sleeves, long pants, and work shoes are necessities in almost everyone's closet.
Aside from this, you want to prevent mold spores from getting inside your body. You can accomplish this by wearing a respirator. Mold can pass through a simple dust mask or bandana. Instead, wear an N-95 respirator mask. These come in a variety of styles and fits, so you can find something that is comfortable. Also, wearing gloves and goggles is a good idea to protect against any contaminants in the standing water.

Use a Dehumidifier
A dehumidifier can help lower moisture levels in a building. Commercial buildings will likely need a large model that can collect a lot of water. Large commercial buildings will need several dehumidifiers. Investing in a good one will greatly reduce your chances of mold.
If you want to protect your business from mold, you need to take immediate action after a storm. Ensure you don proper safety equipment to protect from spores and bacteria brought into your business by floodwaters and start cleaning up the damage.

Tips for Efficient Fire Restoration

5/4/2021 (Permalink)

ceiling collapsed after fire damage in a building Major fire damage to a building in Hallbrook, TN.

Tips For Handling Fire Damage To Your Building

A fire does more than damage your building. It interrupts your business and can even affect your revenue. It is in your best interest to get everything back to normal as soon as possible. Here are some tips for handling fire damage to your building in Hallbrook, TN, efficiently.

Hire One Company
Your first call after the fire is out should be to a reliable fire mitigation company. The certified technicians in charge of your repairs can arrive within hours of your call to assess the damage and inform you of the steps of the cleanup process:

  • Water extraction
  • Material removal
  • Surface drying
  • Disinfection
  • Restoration

Many business owners will hire a different team to handle the rebuilding process, but the whole job goes much more smoothly if you choose one company that specializes in both mitigation and restoration. It streamlines the process and simplifies communication when the same technicians handle the job from start to finish. Restoring your building after the fire damage is gone is easier when builders have full access to information about what needs to be replaced.

Contact Your Insurance Provider
As soon as you know the extent of the damage that needs repair, you must call your insurance company to start the claims process. An insurance adjuster will be sent to walk through the building and take note of the state it is in. If you have any pictures or video of the affected area soon after the fire was extinguished, this documentation may be helpful, particularly if mitigation is already underway by the time the adjuster arrives. Another benefit of choosing the same company to handle both mitigation and restoration is that you can present one estimate that details all the costs that your policy is likely to cover with your claim.
When your building burns, it's important to mitigate the fire damage and restore your building as soon as possible. Hiring one team for the whole process is the best way to get it done quickly.

Things to Consider if Your Commercial Business Experiences Fire Damages

4/30/2021 (Permalink)

A fire in your commercial business can be catastrophic. Here are some steps to keep in mind in the event of a fire:

  • Activate the building alarm and contact 911
  • If a minor fire appears controllable, immediately direct someone in the area to notify a supervisor. Then promptly direct the charge of the fire extinguisher toward the base of the flame and sweep the extinguisher around the burning area
  • On large fires that do not appear controllable, immediately activate the building alarm and direct someone to contact a supervisor. Close all doors while exiting the building to reduce oxygen and slow the spread of the fire. Do NOT lock the doors as this will prevent access by fire or emergency rescue crews
  • Assist in the evacuation of the building. Smoke is the greatest danger in a fire, so be prepared to stay near the floor to avoid smoke
  • During the evacuation, and once outside, move to the area designated as your building's assembly area. Keep streets and walkways clear for emergency vehicles and crews

Following these steps may reduce the impact of a fire and keep your employees safe. Financing is available!

What to Do When Storms Strike

4/20/2021 (Permalink)

There are so many situations that business owners face on a daily basis that sometimes things can be overlooked. One of these situations can be how to respond to severe weather in your area. Severe weather can strike any time in the Knoxville area. Here are some things to know:

TORNADO/THUNDERSTORM/WIND "WATCH" - Indicates that atmospheric conditions are such that these weather conditions may develop.

TORNADO/THUNDERSTORM/WIND "WARNING" - Indicates that these severe weather conditions have been spotted or identified on radar.

Hazardous weather conditions can develop in seconds and may not allow for formal means of communication. In the event that an employee feels that weather is immediately threatening they should consider the following actions:

TAKE COVER! Instruct employees and others in the immediate area to find a wall near the interior of the building away from windows and exterior doors. Individuals should curl into the fetal position near the wall, place their hands over their head and remain in that position until the severe weather passes. If outdoors with no shelter available, lie flat in a nearby ditch and shield head with arms.

Communicating with your employees about procedures for severe weather will help to keep everyone safe.

How Are Odors Removed After Flooding?

4/20/2021 (Permalink)

vehicles parked in front of a building You need a restoration company to remediate the damage caused by floodwaters.

How Are Odors Removed After Flooding?

After a flood strikes a business or your commercial building, it leaves a disaster in its wake. Not only does the moisture encourage explosive black mold growth, but a toxic residue is also often left coating everything the floodwaters touched. It’s why buildings smell so awful afterward.
Usually, you’ll need a top restoration expert to inspect and remediate the damage caused by floodwater. They have access to custom sanitizers and equipment to remove toxins, mold and odors. They use a range of methods to get the best results, including

  • Abrasive cleaning
  • Dry cleaning
  • Foam cleaning
  • Immersion cleaning

What Causes the Odors?

Probably the most noticeable smell is the strong musty odor. This is from mold growth, which loves the inside of buildings. Drywall and wood provide food for the mold, while the mold spores are always all around us. All it needs to grow is excessive humidity.
Floods also frequently leave a toxic sludge covering everything. Items such as ceramic tile and other non-porous surfaces can often be cleaned with a spray and wipe using ordinary sanitizers, but porous items will absorb the water and residue. During a flood, it’s normal to have sewage loss mix in with the flood water which gets everywhere. It’s also responsible for some of the worst odors.

Can Odors Be Removed or Do You Have to Replace Everything?

Using proprietary cleaning agents, restoration experts often can save items instead of replacing them. This not only saves money, it often can save irreplaceable items. SERVPRO leaves your commercial building “Like it never even happened.”
To facilitate the odor removal process, they’ll bring in large-volume air movers and clean everything that was touched by the flood. they can often save essential paperwork and documents, too, using very advanced methods such as freeze-drying and vacuum thermal drying. Future mold growth will also be inhibited by the moisture removal process.
The key is to get reopened as quickly as possible for your business to survive. Your Corryton, TN, restoration technicians are trained to expedite service for commercial customers.
Odor removal is usually easy and quick for professional restorers. The sooner they start, the more effective it’ll be.

3 Things You Should Know About Black Water

3/22/2021 (Permalink)

stair of a House fully flooded during the flooding of the river Flooded home due to severe storm.

What To Do If You Find Black Water In Your Home

If you have experienced a plumbing backup or a flood in Knoxville, TN, then it is possible your home has been damaged by black water. Because it is highly contaminated, this type of water should be treated a bit differently from others. The following information may be helpful if you find yourself in this situation.

1. What is Black Water?
Also known as category 3 water, this water carries large amounts of contaminants from sewage and human waste to mud and debris. Because of this, it can easily spread bacteria throughout your home. If there are mold spores present in the water, it can also result in a large infestation in the building.

2. Where Does It Come From?
This water can come from multiple sources. A common one is flooding, whether from a storm or rising levels in a nearby body of water. Plumbing and sewage problems resulting in flooding toilets or showers may also bring this type of water into your home. If category 1 or 2 water is not removed quickly, it may also become category 3 over time.

3. How Should You Remove It?
Because of the large amounts of contamination, this water should only be removed by a trained professional. Water and sewage cleanup can be done by a water damage remediation company. With their training and necessary equipment, these professionals are able to perform water removal quickly and safely. After this, any damaged areas of the house should be cleaned thoroughly. Affected items should be cleaned if possible or thrown away.
If your house has been damaged by black water, you should take steps to have it removed as soon as possible. It can bring mold, bacteria and sewage into your home. Water removal and repairs should be done by professionals who have been trained to handle contaminated water. They will be able to return your home to its previous condition.

How To Prevent Grill Fires

3/22/2021 (Permalink)

Cleaning a grill at a summer barbecue party. Clean your grill frequently to avoid a fire in your home.

Prevent A Barbeque Fire

Grilling is a fun activity that brings families and friends together to enjoy great food and time outside. If you aren't careful, however, a grill fire may occur, potentially causing injuries and smoke damage. Here's how you can prevent a barbeque fire.

Know-How To Put Out a Fire
Knowing how to put a fire out and having the right supplies on hand is just as important as preventing fires. Here are some tips:

  • If the propane tank is on fire, get as far away as you can and call the fire department.
  • Cut off oxygen by closing the grill's lid.
  • Turn the grill off if possible.
  • If the fire does not stop, spray it with a fire extinguisher or cover it in baking soda to cut off the oxygen.

After the fire is extinguished, call a fire damage repair service in Mascot, TN, to repair any damage that might have affected nearby buildings.

Choose a Safe Location
To prevent fires from spreading to your home, operate the grill at a safe distance away from the building. Avoid grilling on a balcony, patio, deck or other areas that are close to your house. Instead, position the grill in a clear area of your yard.

Clean the Grill Frequently
Burnt remnants on the grill can catch fire easily. After you are done grilling, allow the grill to fully cool and then thoroughly clean it. Always check that it is clean before turning it on.

Trim the Fat
While some fat on your meat is a good thing, excess fat can be a fire hazard. These fatty areas catch fire easily, causing flare-ups that can turn into a fire if you aren't careful. Trimming away excess fat can help reduce this risk. You can also keep a spray bottle of water near the grill to put out small flare-ups, but never pour large amounts of water onto a grill fire.
It's easy to prevent grill fires by grilling far from the building, cleaning the grill frequently and trimming excess fat. You should also know how to put out a barbeque fire in case one occurs.

Cooking Safety Tips for Thanksgiving

11/20/2020 (Permalink)

Turkey in cooking dish Happy Holidays! Call SERVPRO of North Knoxville, we are open 24/7, 365!

Cooking Safety in Knoxville TN

Cooking caused almost half of all reported home fires and home fire injuries, and it is the second leading cause of home fire deaths in 2014-2018. Here at SERVPRO of North Knoxville we know that the kitchen is the heart of the home, especially at Thanksgiving. Kids love to be involved in holiday preparations. Safety in the kitchen is important, especially on Thanksgiving Day when there is a lot of activity and people at home. Cooking brings family and friends together, provides an outlet for creativity and can be relaxing. But did you know that cooking fires are the number one cause of home fires and home injuries? By following a few safety tips provided by  National Fire Prevention Association (NFPA) you can prevent these fires.

Cook with Caution

  1. Be on alert! If you are sleepy or have consumed alcohol don’t use the stove or stovetop. 
  2. Stay in the kitchen while you are frying, boiling, grilling, or broiling food. If you leave the kitchen for even a short period of time, turn off the stove. 
  3. If you are simmering, baking, or roasting food, check it regularly, remain in the home while food is cooking, and use a timer to remind you that you are cooking.
  4. Keep anything that can catch fire — oven mitts, wooden utensils, food packaging, towels or curtains — away from your stovetop.

If you decide to fight a small cooking fire...

  • On the stovetop, smother the flames by sliding a lid over the pan and turning off the burner. Leave the pan covered until it is completely cooled.
  • For an oven fire, turn off the heat and keep the door closed.

If you have doubt about fighting the fire...

  • Just get out! When you leave, close the door behind you to help contain the fire.
  • Call 9-1-1 or the local emergency number from outside the home.

Happy Holidays from our Team to your family!

Fire Extinguisher Safety

6/11/2020 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of North Knoxville will make it "Like it never even happened."

Fire Extinguisher Safety

A portable fire extinguisher can save lives and property by putting out a small fire or containing it until the fire department arrives, but portable extinguishers have limitations. Because fire grows and spreads so rapidly, the #1 priority for residents is to get out safely. Here is what you need to know about choosing and using fire extinguishers

Remember to Check Your Fire Extinguisher for:

  • Easy access in an emergency- be sure nothing is blocking or limiting your ability to reach it.
  • The recommended pressure level- many extinguishers have gauges that show when pressure is too high or too low.
  • Working parts- make sure the can, hoses, and nozzles aren’t damaged, dented, or rusted.
  • Cleanliness- remove any dust, oil, or grease that might be on the outside of the extinguisher.
  • Guidelines and instructions- some extinguishers need to be shaken monthly, others need to be pressure tested every few years.

How to Use a Fire Extinguisher

When operating a fire extinguisher, tell remember the word PASS.

  • Pull the pin. Hold the extinguisher with 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.

To learn how to dispose of a fire extinguisher click here!

SERVPRO of North Knoxville is the one to call if you have a fire loss!  We want to assist you to make it "Like it never even happened."

Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned in Knoxville Tennessee

6/3/2020 (Permalink)

Keep your business clean, and keep your employees and customers healthy. Get Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned.

Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned in Knoxville Tennessee

Getting back to business relies on getting your customers back through your doors.  And that will only happen if they feel safe and secure in your business’s space.  The COVID-19 pandemic has changed what it means to be clean with 40% of consumers citing cleanliness as a top priority.  Are you ready to not only keep your customers and employees safe but to communicate that you’ve chosen a higher standard of cleaning for all Americans?

Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned is a defensive cleaning program that goes way beyond janitorial or carpet cleaning.   This is proactive viral pathogen cleaning.  As the #1 choice in cleanup and restoration, SERVPRO of North Knoxville wants to provide our customers with a higher standard of cleaning, so that your business will be Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned.

SERVPRO of North Knoxville will provide you with a unique program centered around the 3 C’s

  • Consult- A tailored cleaning program to meet your needs
  • Clean- Proactive and COVID-19 Emergency Response Cleaning Program
  • Certify-  A commitment to clean for your employees and consumers

Click here to learn more about this program.  If you are interested in this program call our office at (865) 947- 9992

Stay Safe. Stay Healthy. Get Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned

Why You Can Trust SERVPRO of North Knoxville

5/29/2020 (Permalink)

We are ready to serve YOU! If you experience a loss call us (865) 947- 9992!

Why SERVPRO of North Knoxville

Your home is truly a reflection of you, it houses all your memories, and takes after your personality. Suffering damage to your home can feel like a part of you has been damaged as well. SERVPRO of North Knoxville recognizes a loss can make you feel vulnerable, invaded, or robbed of part of your life. Your loss is unique- in how it started, the emotions you experienced, and the extent of the damage.  We as a company,  want our customers to know we are will be there every step of the way.  You are not alone.  

When damage affects your home, you want it to be restored back to pristine condition. That is why SERVPRO of North Knoxville has professionally restored property for over 15 years. SERVPRO of North Knoxville is the trusted choice for many insurance companies because they know SERVPRO of North Knoxville has the experience to do the job right, and make it "Like it never even happened."

We value our customers and community and we want to do everything to give the best experience when can it feel like the worst has happened.  

Stay Safe. Choose SERVPRO of North Knoxville. 

How Do You Keep Mold Out of Buildings and Your Home?

5/28/2020 (Permalink)

Call SERVPRO of North Knoxville for all your mold needs and concerns!

In order for you to understand home to keep mold out of buildings, you need to know where mold is more likely to grow and how it may enter your home or business.  Mold will grow in places with a lot of moisture, such as around leaks in roofs, windows, or pipes, or where there has been flooding. Mold grows well on paper products, cardboard, ceiling tiles, and wood products. Mold can also grow in dust, paints, wallpaper, insulation, drywall, carpet, fabric, and upholstery.

How Mold Enters the Home

Per the CDC, Mold can enter your home through open doorways, windows, vents, and heating and air conditioning systems. Mold in the air outside can also attach itself to clothing, shoes, and pets can and be carried indoors. When mold spores drop on places where there is excessive moisture, such as where leakage may have occurred in roofs, pipes, walls, plant pots, or where there has been flooding, they will grow. Many building materials provide suitable nutrients that encourage mold to grow.

How to Keep Mold Out of Buildings and Your Home

Now that you know where mold and grow and how it may enter your home or business, SERVPRO of North Knoxville wants to provide you with some tips on how to keep molding out of your business and home.

Inside your home, you can control mold growth by:

  • Controlling humidity levels;
  • Promptly fixing leaky roofs, windows, and pipes;
  • Thoroughly cleaning and drying after flooding;
  • Ventilating shower, laundry, and cooking areas.

Recommendations from the CDC are the following:

  • Keep humidity levels as low as you can—between 30% and 50%–all day long. An air conditioner or dehumidifier will help you keep the level low. Bear in mind that humidity levels change over the course of a day with changes in the moisture in the air and the air temperature, so you will need to check the humidity levels more than once a day.
  • Use an air conditioner or a dehumidifier during humid months.
  • Be sure your home has enough ventilation. Use exhaust fans which vent outside your home in the kitchen and bathroom. Make sure your clothes dryer vents outside your home.
  • Fix any leaks in your home’s roof, walls, or plumbing so mold does not have moisture to grow.
  • Consider not using carpet in rooms or areas like bathrooms or basements that may have a lot of moisture.

If you believe you may have mold growth in your home or business call SERVPRO of North Knoxville (865) 947- 9992.  We are open 24/7!

How to be Prepared for a Thunderstorm

5/28/2020 (Permalink)

Stay Safe. Stay Prepared.

How to be Prepared for a Thunderstorm

Being prepared means knowing how badly your home or business may be affected by the thunderstorm as well as taking precautions to minimalize damage, and finally being prepared is knowing what to do when a thunderstorm occurs.

IF YOU ARE UNDER A THUNDERSTORM WARNING, FIND SAFE SHELTER RIGHT AWAY

  • When thunder roars, go indoors!
  • Move from outdoors into a building or car.
  • Pay attention to alerts and warnings.
  • Unplug appliances.
  • Do not use landline phones.

Prepare NOW

  • Know your area’s risk for thunderstorms. In most places, they can occur year-round and at any hour.
  • Sign up for your community’s warning system. The Emergency Alert System (EAS) and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Weather Radio also provide emergency alerts.
  • Identify nearby, sturdy buildings close to where you live, work, study, and play.
  • Cut down or trim trees that may be in danger of falling on your home.
  • Consider buying surge protectors, lightning rods, or a lightning protection system to protect your home, appliances, and electronic devices.
  • Secure or plan to store outdoor objects like grills and patio furniture.

The National Weather Service recommends that you stay inside for at least thirty minutes after hearing the last peal of thunder. Even if you’re sure that the worst of the storm is over it’s better to wait than to go outside. Lighting can still strike you even if the storm has moved

If your business or home experiences storm damage, SERVPRO of North Knoxville is here to make it “Like it never even happened.”

Why SERVPRO of North Knoxville Should be Your #1 Choice During an Emergency

5/22/2020 (Permalink)

We are here to help 24/7!

First things first, SERVPRO of North Knoxville prides itself on putting our customer's needs first.  We are here to help you and make tragic losses easier.  Rain or shine, night or day,  holiday or just a normal day; WE ARE HERE FOR YOU!

Emergencies rarely happen during a convenient time thus we've made ourselves available 24/7.

When you or your insurance professional calls SERVPRO of North Knoxville, our staff is prepared for whatever is required. We are a locally owned and operated company with the ability to respond to your call no matter the size! Our goal is to provide you with the quickest and most professional restoration experience. We know that emergency situations are never an enjoyable time, but we strive to get life back to normal as fast as possible! If you have any kind of loss in your home or business call us IMMEDIATELY! We are here to help!

Need Emergency Service? Call Us (865) 947-9992

How SERVPRO of North Knoxville can help during COVID-19

5/18/2020 (Permalink)

"Ready for Whatever Happens"

Our Response to COVID-19

Here at SERVPRO of North Knoxville, we understand how COVID-19 has affected our community and we are working every day to provide relief to our customers. The pandemic has caused quite a bit of fear and worry among community members and you may be thinking to yourself “What can I do to keep my exposure minimal?” and “How can I be proactive in combating this virus?” You will be glad to know that SERVPRO can help you in being proactive! We have several levels of proactive cleaning services that we offer to our customers year-round that can help minimize exposure by thoroughly disinfecting businesses and homes. We follow CDC guidelines when performing these services and our employees are all highly-trained. 

Several businesses have already contacted us to perform proactive cleanings of their office spaces, restaurants, theaters, and much more. The best part is that you do not need to vacate your home or business for an extended period of time like you would if you were to have a bug fogging service performed. Our cleaning chemicals are not harmful to you, your pets, or your customers once the cleaning has been performed. This means that whether you are having a home cleaned or your restaurant, we can have you back in the structure and living your life the way you want without having to worry about hotel stays, business interruption, or harm to guests and pets. 

As an industry leader, SERVPRO has been performing services like these for years to proactively clean against everything from SARS, Swine Flu, to the Common Cold! If you or someone you know is interested in having these services performed or obtaining an estimate for these services, please don’t hesitate to give us a call today! 

Stay Safe. Stay Healthy.

How SERVPRO Uses a Matterport Camera

5/13/2020 (Permalink)

Matterport 3D Modeling

SERVPRO of North Knoxville employees prides themselves on helping their customers while making the restoration process as easy as possible. One of the ways that we do that is by utilizing a Matterport Camera. This is a 3D modeling camera that allows us to capture the interior of any home or business and create a 3D rendering of that building for our customers. Why would we do this you ask? The answer is simply because it makes the claims process easier for our customers should they have a loss and the restoration efforts more defined as we know what the interior of the building looked like before a loss occurred.

There are two types of captures that we can make with the Matterport Camera; preloss models and post-loss models. Pre-loss models help us understand the layout, design, and overall square footage of the space before anything has occurred that would require our services. It also documents the location of contents such as electronic equipment, merchandise, flammable storage, etc,. This is a service that we provide free of charge to our priority service customers. Our priority service model includes an Emergency Ready Profile, Priority Service Agreement, and Matterport 3D modeling of your business. 

The post-loss model is just as important, as we can use this to document the severity of the loss, all areas that were affected, as well as the restoration efforts before and after they have been completed. This data is extremely helpful in working with an adjuster and streamlines the process in a way that prevents them from having to make multiple trips out to the location in order to approve quotes or verify progress. This has been utilized for all types of losses including water, fire, and weather damage. We believe in helping our customers as much as we can during these events and Matterport is just one of many ways that we are able to do that. 

If you are interested in becoming a member of our priority service group, please feel free to call us and we will schedule an appointment to meet with you and assess your business needs.

Stay Safe. Stay Prepared. 

Our Response to COVID-19

5/12/2020 (Permalink)

We are here to help!

Our Response to COVID-19

COVID-19. It is on everyone's mind daily and the height of most people's concerns. How is SERVPRO assisting in the fight against this virus? SERVPRO of North Knoxville is providing proactive cleaning services to customers that want to take measures to protect themselves, their families, and their employees in this fight against Coronavirus. This is not the first time that SERVPRO has taken to the front lines in a pandemic. We have encountered everything from the common cold to the swine flu, and now Coronavirus. Our highly trained professionals have been fighting pandemics for years and adhere to all CDC Guidelines when doing it. We are a firm believer in helping the members of our community stay healthy and ahead of the curve when it comes to health hazards. 

Proactive cleaning takes many forms, all of which should be performed by a trained professional. We have many cleaning products including sterilizing and disinfecting solutions that we use to combat airborne and direct contact diseases. Some are fogged into buildings and others are sprayed directing onto surfaces and wiped off. Dwell time is the duration a product is allowed to sit on a surface in order to perform its function. We always allow for proper dwell time and cleanup of all solutions in order to provide maximum effectiveness in sterilization and disinfecting of buildings.

The CDC recommends usage of a labeled hospital-grade disinfectant with claims against similar pathogens to the coronavirus. Multiple products in the SERVPRO product line carry the EPA-approved emerging pathogens claims. While there is currently no product tested against this particular strain of the coronavirus, we are following all guidelines as provided by the CDC and local authorities. If you or anyone you know is interested in proactive cleaning for their home or business, please contact us and we will be happy to assess your needs and provide you with some peace of mind during these trying times. 

Stay Safe. Stay Healthy.

Government Building Cleaning

5/9/2019 (Permalink)

A local government facility recently switched the vendor for two of their cafeterias. SERVPRO of North Knoxville was given a small window between vendors to clean the cafeterias from ceiling to floor and everything in between. We rallied our crews and worked from 3pm to 4am. It was important that we were thorough because we also cleaned the kitchens. This included the walls, floors, ceilings, and equipment. The customer was so satisfied that she said she would recommend to all of the other governmental facilities that she deals with.

SERVPRO of North Knoxville is trusted by government, commercial, and residential customers all over the Knoxville area to do the job right the first time, every time. If you have a commercial cleaning need, call us at 865-947-9992!

Basic Weather Terms

5/9/2019 (Permalink)

BASIC WEATHER TERMS:

Warning A warning is issued when a hazardous weather or hydrologic event is occurring, imminent or likely. A warning means weather conditions pose a threat to life or property. People in the path of the storm need to take protective action.

Watch A watch is used when the risk of a hazardous weather or hydrologic event has increased significantly, but its occurrence, location or timing is still uncertain. It is intended to provide enough lead time so those who need to set their plans in motion can do so. A watch means that hazardous weather is possible. People should have a plan of action in case a storm threatens and they should listen for later information and possible warnings especially when planning travel or outdoor activities.

Advisory An advisory is issued when a hazardous weather or hydrologic event is occurring, imminent or likely. Advisories are for less serious conditions than warnings, that cause significant inconvenience and if caution is not exercised, could lead to situations that may threaten life or property.

FIRE ALERTS:

Red Flag

This is a fire weather program which highlights the onset of critical weather conditions

conducive to extensive wildfire occurrences.

Red Flag Warning

A term used by fire-weather forecasters to call attention to limited weather conditions of particular importance that may result in extreme burning conditions. It is issued when it is an on-going event or the fire weather forecaster has a high degree of confidence that Red Flag criteria will occur within 24 hours of issuance. Red Flag criteria occurs whenever a geographical area has been in a dry spell for a week or two, or for a shorter period , if before spring green-up or after fall color, and the National Fire Danger Rating System (NFDRS) is high to extreme and the following forecast weather parameters are forecasted to be met:

1) a sustained wind average 15 mph or greater

2) relative humidity less than or equal to 25 percent and

3) a temperature of greater than 75 degrees F.

In some states, dry lightning and unstable air are criteria. A Fire Weather Watch may be issued prior to the Red Flag Warning

Dealing With Spring Storms

5/9/2019 (Permalink)

Spring storm season in East Tennessee can be unpredictable. Heavy winds and rain are common and we have already seen a lot of rain in the month of February. During heavy rain events it’s not uncommon for water to end up in a finished or unfinished basement. SERVPRO of North Knoxville can quickly extract the water and set up drying equipment no matter the size of the area affected. There is, however, something to keep in mind: most insurance companies DO NOT cover water losses that come from exterior sources. It’s also important to note that the source needs be stopped before extraction can begin. So when the rain stops and you have water issues in your house be sure to call SERVPRO of North Knoxville!

Pipe Bursts

5/9/2019 (Permalink)

What to do if a pipe bursts in your home

If a pipe bursts in your home, the first thing you should do is turn off your water supply. Try to contain the damage and stop the issue from escalating any further. If you think there is a risk of electrical shock, shut off your electricity. The next thing you should do is call a plumber. And finally, while waiting for help to arrive, try to remove as much excess water as possible. Standing water can cause further damage to flooring and drywall. Also, you should ensure the area is dry and free from any moisture. Moisture can cause bacterial growth. 

If this happens in your home, give SERVPRO of North Knoxville a call. We will help alleviate your worries and get you back to preloss conditions. Financing options are available. 

Spring Safety Facts and Myths

4/8/2019 (Permalink)

Every year, SERVPRO of North Knoxville answers the call to help clean up and restore homes and businesses after spring storms have taken their toll.  After all, SERVPRO of North Knoxville is always here in helping make disasters “Like it never even happened.” when your property suffers from storm damage.  So leave the restoration remediation of your home and business to our team.  Consider the following to protect your property during a storm:

Myth: If it is not raining, then there is no danger from lighting.  
Fact:  Lightning often strikes outside of heavy rain and may occur as far as 10 miles away from rainfall. 

Myth: Rubber soles of shoes or rubber tires on a car protect you from being struck
Fact: Rubber-soled shoes and rubber tires provide no protection from lightning.  The steel frame of a hard-topped vehicle provides increased protection if you are not toughing metal.  Although you may be injured if lightning strikes your car, you are much safer inside a vehicle than outside.

Myth: “Heat lightning” occurs after very hot summer days and poses no threat.  
Fact:  “Heat lightning” is a team used to describe lightning from a thunderstorm too far away for thunder to be heard.

When disaster strikes, SERVPRO of North Knoxville is here to help you.  Give our team of professionals a call 865-947-9992!

Mold and your home

12/26/2018 (Permalink)

According to the CDC:

Mold is found both indoors and outdoors. Mold can enter your home through open doorways, windows, vents, and heating and air conditioning systems. Mold in the air outside can also attach itself to clothing, shoes, bags, and pets can and be carried indoors.

Mold will grow in places with a lot of moisture, such as around leaks in roofs, windows, or pipes, or where there has been flooding. Mold grows well on paper products, cardboard, ceiling tiles, and wood products. Mold can also grow in dust, paints, wallpaper, insulation, drywall, carpet, fabric, and upholstery.

You Can Control Mold

Inside your home you can control mold growth by:

  • Controlling humidity levels;
  • Promptly fixing leaky roofs, windows, and pipes;
  • Thoroughly cleaning and drying after flooding;
  • Ventilating shower, laundry, and cooking areas.

If mold is growing in your home, you need to clean up the mold and fix the moisture problem. 

Call SERVPRO of North Knoxville to remediate any possible mold you may have in your home. Call us today at 865.947.9992.

Preparing for a storm

12/26/2018 (Permalink)

Strong gusts of wind? Dark, fast moving clouds? Downpour of rain? These are a few warning signs that a storm is headed in your direction.Here are a few helpful tips on what you can do to prepare for a storm:

  • check the forecast- know what to expect
  • watch for signs of approaching storm- clouds, wind, rain, etc. 
  • check on neighbors who require special assistance- ensure they are in a safe zone and ensure they are prepared 
  • have flashlights and batteries on hand
  • have a battery operated radio
  • have a first aide kit
  • get manual can opener and canned foods
  • stay away from windows and doors

There is no way to be 100% prepared for a storm but you can increase your chances for survival if you take a few preventative measures. 

If you do suffer storm damage, call the professionals at SERVPRO of North Knoxville at 865.947.9992!

Signs of mold in your home

12/26/2018 (Permalink)

It is awful to find out that what you thought was just a spot of dirt, is actually mold growth. Have you ever moved something, and underneath found what you suspected to be mold? Appliances leaking provides a breeding ground for growth. Here are a few signs that you have mold in your home:

  • smelling a mold odor- sort of like an old book store smell or a basement smell 
  • mold growth- can be confused for dirt spots
  • previous water leaks- under and around the area where there were previous leaks can potentially cause mold growth
  • past flooding
  • excess condensation- bathrooms, kitchens, and any other room that there may be excess moisture are potential hazards

The best way to confirm growth is to call a professional. Mold growth is one of the many things that is best handled by a professional.The trusted team at SERVPRO of North Knoxville will be happy to help!

Tips to prevent water damage

12/26/2018 (Permalink)

Plants around your home? Gutters full of leaves? Downspouts unattached? High water bills? These are all signs of potential water damage. 

  • be careful where you plant trees and plants- some plants have invasive roots
  • clean out roof gutters- debris causes build up of water with no place to go
  • keep an eye on your water bill- extreme differences could show a leak
  • us a drain snake instead of chemicals- chemicals can potentially eat through your pipes
  • NEVER POUR GREASE DOWN YOUR SINK- even if the water is running, it can and will clog your drains

Damage from water is hard to prevent. With the knowledge discussed in this post, you may be able to lessen your chances of water damage or lessen the amount of damage caused by the water.

If you do suffer a water loss be sure to call SERVPRO of North Knoxville to mitigate the damage. Call us at 865.947.9992!

Things to look for to prevent water damage

12/26/2018 (Permalink)

Here are a few tips to prevent water damage:

  • check hoses and faucets on a regular basis- be sure hoses and faucets are not leaking
  • check tubs and showers- be sure that showers are caulked and shower curtains are tight against the walls
  • know how to shut off your water main- if a leak occurs be sure you are able to shut off the water
  • install flooring pans under appliances to catch any water that could be leaking
  • consider purchasing point of leak alarms- water alarms that work like fire alarms
  • consider purchasing a water flow monitoring system- will let you know how much water you are using at any given time

These are just a few tips to water damage prevention. Always be aware. If you suffer a water loss, call the professionals at SERVPRO of North Knoxville at 865.947.9992!

Winter storm safety

12/26/2018 (Permalink)

Let's be honest...we don't get a lot of snow here in Knoxville. But it doesn't take much to paralyze our city. Winter storms can last for several days and be accompanied with high winds, freezing rain, sleet, heavy snowfall and cold temperatures. Winter storms can make driving and walking extremely hazardous. Always listen to the radio and television for the latest information and instructions for your area.

Before a winter storm:

-Have a disaster plan

-Prepare a disaster supplies kit for your home and car. Include a first aid kit, canned food and a can opener, bottled water, battery operated radio, flashlight, protective clothing and blankets.

-Be aware of changing weather

During a winter storm:

-Stay indoors and dress warmly

-Eat regularly. Food provides the body with energy for producing its own heat.

-If you must go outside, wear layered clothing, gloves and a hat.

-Keep dry. Change wet clothing to prevent loss of body heat.

-If you must drive, carry a cell phone.

-Keep the gas tank full.

-Let someone know where you're going in case your car gets stuck.

If you home experiences snow or ice damage due to a winter storm, be sure to call SERVPRO of North Knoxville at 865.947.9992.

Possible fire hazards at home

12/18/2018 (Permalink)

Did you know that there are more than 360,000 home structure fires each year?

The cold weather often means a higher risk of house fires. his is because people are spending more time at home and indoors from the wintry weather!

Common Fire Hazards at Home

  • Candles
  • Cigarettes
  • Electrical & Lighting
  • Dryers & Washing Machines

These fire hazards can be preventable with some forethought and care! The most preventable are are unattended candles and cooking! Be aware of when you light candles or leave the stove on before you leave your home or go to bed. 

The most recent fire damage SERVPRO did was "quick and a job well done" stated from a happy customer. She explained a fire had started in the middle of the night and SERVPRO was there that morning removing the damage and making everything smell and look nice!

If you have fire damage call SERVPRO of North Knoxville at 865.947.9992.

Tips for a safe Holiday

12/18/2018 (Permalink)

It is the holidays, so everyone wants to add fun warmth and sparkle to the wonderful season. It is very important to remember that some of our favorite holiday decorations carry a big risk of electrical or a fire if these aren’t used carefully.

Chestnuts are roasting on an open fire, but let’s sure hope your Christmas tree isn’t burning. Every year there are an estimated 200 homes that have had Christmas tree fires. Most of these fires are caused by electrical malfunctions as well as heating equipment.

Safety Tips

  • Always keep candles, heaters and fireplaces away from your tree.
  • Did you know metal stands cause trees to dry out and become flammable? Always remember to check the water level daily or nightly.
  • Inspect lights before plugging them in or putting them up.
  • Never overload a circuit.
  • Before leaving your house or going to bed make sure to turn off all of the lights.

Always remember that SERVPRO of North Knoxville is open 24/7/365! So if you are in a burning situation during the holidays, SERVPRO will be there to help!

Always training our professionals

12/17/2018 (Permalink)

We have always put a high priority into educating our team. That need is more important than ever today. SERVPRO of North Knoxville is an IICRC certified firm with certified technicians. That means you can expect the very highest in standards and protocol to be used in your home or business.

IICRC Training and Certification

The Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) certifies and sets the standards for the cleaning and restoration industries. Our Professionals study IICRC standards and best practices in water restoration, fire restoration, mold remediation, carpet and upholstery cleaning, and other cleaning and restoration courses.

Employee Certification Training

The Employee Certification Training is a voluntary, self-paced program designed for SERVPRO Franchise employees. Certification is awarded after successful completion of course materials and an examination. Modules include:

  • Crew Training
  • Fire Restoration
  • Water Restoration
  • Carpet & Upholstery Cleaning

Don's trust just anyone with a portable vacuum to mitigate your water or fire damage. Trust the experts at SERVPRO of North Knoxville.

How to know what insurance might cover

12/14/2018 (Permalink)

Scenario 1: Your basement pipes froze and burst. You don’t realize it for a couple of weeks. Now there are inches of water on your basement floor with mold starting to grow.

Scenario 2: Broken shingles on your 50-year-old roof is allowing water to leak into the attic. Water is saturating the wood and insulation which is leading to mold in the attic.

               Scenario 3: You don’t think much about the mold forming in your shower until one day you notice how unpleasant it looks and you’re concerned whether it may be causing health risks.

Do any of the above scenarios sound familiar? Or, have they happened to you? Do you think your insurance policy would cover these scenarios?

Most the time, these scenarios are not covered by the insurer. Home insurance policies usually don’t cover mold that resulted from a preventable water leak, flooding, or high humidity. Also, Insurance companies typically don’t pay for maintenance issues that insurers think a homeowner should have prevented such as properly ventilating a bathroom or maintaining lower humidity in a basement. The standard homeowner’s insurance policy does not cover water damage caused by a flood. Thus, if a flood causes water damage that leads to mold, the resulting mold issue would not be covered by your home policy.

Let’s discuss what options there are if you are unsure of your policy coverages for disaster preparedness.

How do I know what my homeowner’s insurance policy covers?

                A homeowner’s insurance ‘usually’ does not cover the following:

  • Mold
  • Sewer Backup
  • Floods
  • Sinkholes
  • Earthquakes

A homeowner’s insurance ‘usually’ does cover the following:

  • Fire
  • Lightning
  • Vandalism
  • Damage Caused by vehicles
  • Theft
  • Falling Objects
  • Weight of ice, snow, or sleet
  • Frozen Pipes

These are accidental and sudden incidents. Insurance companies typically cover this type of damage. Non-weather-related water damage is one of the most common home insurance claim and one of the most expensive!

What To Do:

Check your homeowner’s insurance policy to see if there is any language or endorsements for claims concerning mold, sewer, flood, etc.  Some insurers require special add-ons to cover mold, sewer backup, floods, etc. The insurance company may also place limits on the coverage which means limiting how much the insurer will pay for a related claim. Call your insurance agent to review the coverage you have and discuss the limit/coverage you desire. The least expensive insurance policy is not always the best.  You may be giving up coverage you think you automatically have with a homeowner’s policy.

                Last but not least, if you experience a loss that you know will be covered and need to file a claim then always remember SERVPRO of North Knoxville is just one call away! Our professional technicians will get your lives back in order and your home restored the right way, "Like it never even happened."

Steps to take in the event of a fire

12/13/2018 (Permalink)

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 some appropriate steps. 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 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 North Knoxville.

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.

These are just a few tips to follow until SERVPRO of North Knoxville arrives. We are your trusted fire cleanup and restoration company. We are 24/7 and you can reach us at 865.947.9992!

Winterizing your commercial building

12/5/2018 (Permalink)

Here are some tips for getting your commercial building ready for the winter months:

Inspect Heating Systems

Maintaining your heating system should be a top priority as the weather cools, obviously. Inspect the system regularly, and create a written plan to outline what maintenance tasks should be addressed daily, weekly, monthly and annually. This way, you have a schedule in place to keep  

Furnaces and rooftop units also should be examined. Repair cracks in heat exchangers to avoid the risk of leaking poisonous carbon dioxide into your building. Consider replacing furnaces older than 10 years, as the efficiency ratings for newer equipment can exceed that of older equipment by 40 percent or more.

Calibrate Thermostats / Reduce Set Points

Your building’s thermostats present opportunities for energy savings. Don't let them intimidate you! First, calibrate thermostats, which will structure your heating systems to operate more efficiently. Additionally, consider lowering the heating set point in your building a few degrees. Studies show utility costs drop by an average of one percent for every degree lowered. Just don't make it so cool that employees bring in a truckload of space heaters, which can inflate energy costs. 

Change Air Filters

Change air filters in your system. Dirty air filters slow down air flow, making your system work harder, which leads to increased energy use and shortened equipment life cycles. More seriously, dirty filters also can have a negative impact on your building’s indoor air quality and, in turn, its occupants. Replace filters based upon the procedure and frequency guidelines of the filter and HVAC manufacturer. 

Tips for Charitable Donations

11/28/2018 (Permalink)

With holiday season in full effect, giving back is one of the most important things to do. Whether you are donating to help the homeless, help underprivileged children, or a local pet shelter, you can kill two birds with one stone. In return for your generosity, you can use the donation as a tax deduction. Here are a few tips when you go to fill your business tax return:

  • Itemize- in some cases it is more beneficial to itemize, rather than use the standard deduction
  • Choose carefully when to make a donation- ensure the place you are donating to is qualified
  • Get a receipt- a receipt for everything gives proof for the IRS.
  • Payroll deductions- do not overlook payroll deductions. 
  • You cannot deduct time
  • You can deduct expenses related to volunteering
  • Document the value of any gift given to a charitable entity
  • Remember there are limits to deductions
  • Calendar- remember that everything has to be done before December 31st of the filing year.

The Holiday Season is about giving and in order to give the most, business owners need to be able to catch some tax breaks. Using a few of these helpful tips, will allow you to u=ensure your business gets the maximum amount of tax breaks. Happy Holiday from SERVPRO of North Knoxville!

Tips on how to Gain New Clients

11/14/2018 (Permalink)

In this business, it is difficult to gain new clients because the last thing people want to think about is a disaster striking in their life. We have to ensure that our name is out there so if something does happen, people know who to call. Word of mouth is a great way to gain new clients. People want to know that they are going to be taken care of and that all of their worries will be alleviated. Excellent customer service skills will set us apart from the competition. Here are a few tips on things we can do to have excellent customer service skills:

  • actively listen to clients
  • show empathy
  • take action
  • ensure them that they can trust us
  • give the client progress updates as often as possible
  • always be sure to thank clients 
  • give clients a call 3-6 months later to ensure they are still satisfied and let them know about current specials

All of these tips will help us stand out above the competition. People do not want to have to call us, but we can ensure that they have exceptional service that turns their negative into a positive. 

Water Damage Do's and Don'ts

11/12/2018 (Permalink)

Busted pipe? Leaking water tank? Here are some tips to do and not to do if you experience these issues.

Do:

  • Remove as much water as possible by mopping
  • Remove and set wet upholstery to dry
  • Wipe any excess water from furniture and remove any table top items
  • Place a foil barrier or wood blocks between furniture legs and wet carpeting
  • Turn on A/C to ensure drying in summer
  • Remove any rugs and set them out to dry
  • Place any luggage in sunlight to dry
  • Gather any loose items on the floor

Don't:

  • Leave any wet fabrics in place and try to place items where they will quickly dry
  • Leave magazines, books, or any colored items on wet floor surfaces
  • Use your vacuum to remove excess water
  • Use any appliances while standing on wet floors
  • Turn on ceiling fixtures if ceiling is wet
  • Go into rooms the ceiling is sagging from water damage

Be sure to contact SERVPRO of North Knoxville if you experience any water damage. Financing options are available. 

Pipe Bursts

11/12/2018 (Permalink)

What to do if a pipe bursts in your home

If a pipe bursts in your home, the first thing you should do is turn off your water supply. Try to contain the damage and stop the issue from escalating any further. If you think there is a risk of electrical shock, shut off your electricity. The next thing you should do is call a plumber. And finally, while waiting for help to arrive, try to remove as much excess water as possible. Standing water can cause further damage to flooring and drywall. Also, you should ensure the area is dry and free from any moisture. Moisture can cause bacterial growth. 

If this happens in your home, give SERVPRO of North Knoxville a call. We will help alleviate your worries and get you back to preloss conditions. Financing options are available. 

Christmas Trees

11/12/2018 (Permalink)

Beautiful Natural Christmas Tree

Holiday season is approaching and who doesn't love the look of a real Christmas tree. Choosing your own tree, cutting it down, and taking it home is a great holiday tradition to start with your family. Live trees really seem to put people in the Christmas spirit and make your house smell amazing! If they are not properly cared for, your Christmas spirit could potentially go up in flames! Here are a few tips for this holiday season:

  • Choose a tree that has been freshly cut and has green needles
  • Water your tree DAILY to keep it from drying out
  • Only use flame retardant lights and decorations
  • Ensure there are no frayed wires on holiday lights
  • Do not connect more than 3 strands of mini string light sets
  • Keep your tree at least 3 feet away from ANY heat source
  • Do not block exits with your tree
  • Always unplug lights before leaving the house and before bed
  • Get rid of the tree when needles start turning brown or stop turning the lights on. This means that your tree is drying out
  • Be sure to check that smoke alarms are working properly and that your family knows what to do in case of a fire

While live trees are beautiful, they can be fire hazards. Be sure to take preventative measures, be aware, and be prepared this holiday season to keep your family safe! 

How To Prevent Growth

11/12/2018 (Permalink)

Mold Growth

Spores spread very easily and very quickly. They cannot be completely eradicated even after remediation. Growth can be present ANYWHERE: on carpet, clothing, food, paper, and even places you cannot see. Some commonly effected places are drywall, framing, and in ceiling tiles. Not only is the problem costly and difficult to fix, it can become hazardous to your health. You can develop allergies and even breathing problems from the growth.

Concerned about growth in your home? The best way to prevent growth is moisture control. Here are a few tips on how to control moisture in your home:

  • Identify problem areas within your home and correct them
  • Dry any wet areas IMEDIATELY
  • Prevent moisture with proper ventilation
  • Equip your home with mold resistant products
  • Direct rainwater away from your home
  • Clean roof gutters

Not every growth issue can be foreseen, but there are preventative measures you can take to lessen your chances of this affecting your life. If you suspect a leak or possible growth, give SERVPRO of North Knoxville a call. We will be more than happy to come out and investigate the issue for you!

Fall Tips for Preparing Your Home

11/6/2018 (Permalink)

It is that time of year again! Although not every disaster is preventable, there are some things that can be foreseen. There are many preventative measures we can take to help protect our homes. Regularly cleaning the gutters and downspouts can prevent leaves from building up and blocking off pathways for rain water to travel. Another great option is to install gutter guards to prevent leaves from entering in to the gutters from the beginning. Either inspect your roof or have a professional do it for you. Replacing cracked or buckling shingles could potentially save you thousands of dollars in the long run. Be sure to check around chimneys, skylights, and pipes to ensure there are no gaps. If water gets in the gaps it could cause serious damage, so using a roof sealer would guarantee that your roof is water proof. Use a screw driver to check the trim around windows, doors, railings, and decks. Caulking any homes and replacing any weak wood is a great preventative measure. As the temperatures drop, it is important to prevent pipes from freezing. Be sure that all of the water is out of hoses and that the water valve has been shut off, to ensure that the pipes do not burst. If you live in a manufactured home, check that all skirting are secured properly and that your pipes have been covered in heat tape. If you know temperatures are going to be very low, leave the water running. A small, steady stream of water running out of your faucets will help keep your pipes from freezing. Disasters can strike at any time and happen to anyone. Small, preventative measures can be taken to lessen the probability of certain things happening to your home. 

Preparing for a storm

9/26/2018 (Permalink)

With Hurricane Florence hitting the Carolinas recently, it brings to mind some of the things that we can do to prepare for a moderate to massive storm.

No matter where you live, you'll encounter storms. Most of the time these are routine, but some cause serious and dangerous problems. Here are tips for preparing for storms, and weathering them safely.
  • Always keep a battery-powered radio in your home so that you can tune to radio stations if you lose electricity. Check or change the batteries frequently.

  • Keep a flashlight in an easily accessible spot on every floor of your home. Check the batteries monthly, and replace them as needed.

  • Keep a supply of candles on hand for power failures.

  • As a safety precaution before leaving the house on vacation, unplug all electrical appliances except for those lights connected to automatic timers.

  • If you live in a storm-prone area, nail down roof shingles or use adequate adhesive to keep them from blowing off in a violent wind. For roofs with shingles that are not the seal-down type, apply a little dab of roofing cement under each tab.

  • A lightning-protection system should offer an easy, direct path for the bolt to follow into the ground and thus prevent injury or damage. Grounding rods (at least two for a house) should be placed at opposite corners of the house.

  • Don't go out during a hurricane unless you have to; however, if flooding threatens, seek high ground, and follow the instructions of civil defense personnel.

  • When a major storm is imminent, close shutters, board windows, or tape the inside of larger panes with an "X" along the full length of their diagonals. Even a light material like masking tape may give the glass the extra margin of strength it needs to resist cracking.

If you do suffer storm damage, call on SERVPRO of North Knoxville at 865-947-9992.

Home Emergency Tips for a Water Loss

9/21/2018 (Permalink)

No one plans on having a water emergency, but when you do, here on some helpful tips.

Do:

-Wipe excess water from wood furniture after removal of lamps and table top items.

-Remove and prop wet upholstery and pillow cushions for even drying.

-Place aluminum foil or wood blocks between furniture legs and wet carpeting.

-Turn air conditioning on for maximum drying in the summer.

-Remove Oriental rugs or other colored rugs from wall-to-wall carpeting.

DO NOT:

-Use your household vacuum to remove water.

-Use TVs or other household appliances while standing on wet carpets or floors, especially not on wet concrete floors.

-Turn on ceiling fixtures if ceiling is wet, and keep out of rooms where ceilings are sagging from retained water.

When you have a water emergency, call SERVPRO of North Knoxville. We are 24 hour emergency responders.

Local grocery store suffers massive loss

9/21/2018 (Permalink)

This picture shows only part of the muddy mess left behind after the water loss.

Recently, an 80,000 square foot grocery store suffered a massive water emergency. The building was repurposed from being a Big-Box retailer into a grocery store in 2009. During renovations, new utilities were required and an unused 8 inch water line was capped and left in place. That unused water line, which runs underneath the building, suffered a catastrophic failure on the morning of February 12, 2018. Water then began flowing, under high pressure, through the expansion joints in the floor and into all areas of the store. After the local utility authority was able to secure the water, more than an inch of muddy water was left covering most of the store. This included the sales floor, stock rooms, freezers, and prep areas.

SERVPRO of North Knoxville responded to the scene shortly after the incident and immediately began to mitigate the damages and help get the store back open for business.

Spring Safety Facts and Myths

4/6/2018 (Permalink)

  • If it is not raining, then there is no danger from lightning.--- This is a myth! Lightning often strikes outside of heavy rain and may occur as far as ten miles away from rainfall. This is especially true in the western United States where thunderstorms sometimes produce very little rain.
  • The rubber soles of shoes or rubber tires on a car protect you from being struck by lightning.--- This is also a myth! Rubber-soled shoes and rubber tires provide no protection from lightning. The steel frame of a hard-topped vehicle provides increased protection if you are not touching metal. Although you may be injured if lightning strikes your car, you are much safer inside a vehicle than outside.
  • "Heat lightning" is a term used to describe lightning from a thunderstorm too far away for thunder to be heard.--- This is a fact!

Let SERVPRO of North Knoxville Help You Prepare Your Home To Sell

3/22/2018 (Permalink)

Home selling season is upon us here in Knoxville. When selling a home, you want to make sure that you have your home fully prepared to be listed on the market. Presentation is everything, and the impression of musty or moldy odors can negatively impact the asking price of any home. SERVPRO of North Knoxville will inspect a property- including crawl spaces- to help determine the extent of water or mold damage and remove potentially harmful bacteria and odors. This will give buyers and sellers peace of mind and allow sellers to receive top dollar for their home. Before you risk your buyer’s health or the opportunity to close the sale of the property, call your local cleanup and restoration professionals, SERVPRO of North Knoxville, at 865-947-9992.

Weather Alerts

3/22/2018 (Permalink)

BASIC WEATHER TERMS:

Warning A warning is issued when a hazardous weather or hydrologic event is occurring, imminent or likely. A warning means weather conditions pose a threat to life or property. People in the path of the storm need to take protective action.

Watch A watch is used when the risk of a hazardous weather or hydrologic event has increased significantly, but its occurrence, location or timing is still uncertain. It is intended to provide enough lead time so those who need to set their plans in motion can do so. A watch means that hazardous weather is possible. People should have a plan of action in case a storm threatens and they should listen for later information and possible warnings especially when planning travel or outdoor activities.

Advisory An advisory is issued when a hazardous weather or hydrologic event is occurring, imminent or likely. Advisories are for less serious conditions than warnings, that cause significant inconvenience and if caution is not exercised, could lead to situations that may threaten life or property.

FIRE ALERTS:

Red Flag

This is a fire weather program which highlights the onset of critical weather conditions

conducive to extensive wildfire occurrences.

Red Flag Warning

A term used by fire-weather forecasters to call attention to limited weather conditions of particular importance that may result in extreme burning conditions. It is issued when it is an on-going event or the fire weather forecaster has a high degree of confidence that Red Flag criteria will occur within 24 hours of issuance. Red Flag criteria occurs whenever a geographical area has been in a dry spell for a week or two, or for a shorter period , if before spring green-up or after fall color, and the National Fire Danger Rating System (NFDRS) is high to extreme and the following forecast weather parameters are forecasted to be met:

1) a sustained wind average 15 mph or greater

2) relative humidity less than or equal to 25 percent and

3) a temperature of greater than 75 degrees F.

In some states, dry lightning and unstable air are criteria. A Fire Weather Watch may be issued prior to the Red Flag Warning.

Proper use of smoke alarms

3/22/2018 (Permalink)

SMOKE ALARMS ARE A KEY PART

of a home fire escape plan. When there is

a fire, smoke spreads fast. Working smoke

alarms give you early warning so you can

get outside quickly.

SAFETY TIPS

  • Install smoke alarms inside and outside each bedroom and sleeping area. Install alarms on every level of the home. Install alarms in the basement.
  • Large homes may need extra smoke alarms.
  • It is best to use interconnected smoke alarms.

When one smoke alarm sounds they all sound.

  • Test all smoke alarms at least once a month. Press the test button to be sure the alarm is working.
  • There are two kinds of alarms. Ionization smoke alarms are quicker to warn about flaming fires.

Photoelectric alarms are quicker to warn about smoldering fires. It is best to use both types of alarms in the home.

  • A smoke alarm should be on the ceiling or high on a wall. Keep smoke alarms away from the kitchen to reduce false alarms. They should be at least 10 feet (3 meters) from the stove.
  • People who are hard-of-hearing or deaf can use special alarms. These alarms have strobe lights and bed shakers.
  • Replace all smoke alarms when they are 10 years old.

Large Desiccant Dehumidifier

3/22/2018 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of North Knoxville 

Proudly announcing a new way of drying and reducing humidity for the perfect climate control in water disasters, SERVPRO® of North Knoxville is the only company in East Tennessee to own a 950K CDH-138-RL Large Loss Electric Desiccant.  Meeting the demands of larger residential and commercial water restoration jobs with a large-capacity mobile dehumidifier from ARID-Dry™, SERVPRO® of North Knoxville professionals can work more efficiently and with faster time-response.   These skid- and trailer-mounted units are perfectly manufactured for the most proper and substantial vapor pressure reduction and active temperature control management.

What is a Dehumidifier?
The most basic explanation is that a desiccant dehumidifier has a moisture absorbing wheel inside the unit. The wheel is made of silica gel – which is the desiccant (drying) element. Air enters the unit through an opening and travels through the silica gel impregnated wheel. When the air reaches the other side of the wheel it is dry and pushed out of the unit by a high static blower.  Bottom line: it is perhaps the most effective method available of controlling humidity and/or removing moisture from structural materials, hardwood flooring, and providing structural preparation prior to applying coatings. 

Prepare yourself for fire disasters

3/22/2018 (Permalink)

Tips from FEMA for preparing your family, home, and business from the threat of wildfires:

  • Get an emergency supply kit, which includes items like non-perishable food, water, a battery- powered or hand- crank radio, extra flashlights, and batteries. You may want to prepare a portable kit and keep it in your car.
  • Make a family emergency plan. Your family may not be together when disaster strikes, so it is important to know how you will contact one another, how you will get back together, and what you will do in case of an emergency.
  • Protect your property from wildfires by designing and landscaping with wildfire safety in mind.
  • Learn about the emergency service plans that have been established in your area by your state and local government. In any emergency, always listen to the instructions given by local emergency management officials.
  • Ask SERVPRO of North Knoxville about starting a Disaster Recovery Plan for your business.

Mold Prevention Tips

3/22/2018 (Permalink)

The key to mold control is moisture control. Solve moisture problems before they become mold problems with these tips:

  • Fix leaky plumbing and leaks in the building envelope as soon as possible.
  • Watch for condensation and wet spots. Fix source(s) of moisture problem(s) as soon as possible.
  • Prevent moisture due to condensation by increasing surface temperature or reducing the moisture level in air (humidity). To increase surface temperature, insulate or increase air circulation. To reduce the moisture level in air, repair leaks, increase ventilation (if outside air is cold and dry), or dehumidify (if outdoor air is warm and humid).
  • Keep heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) drip pans clean, flowing properly, and unobstructed.
  • Vent moisture-generating appliances, such as dryers, to the outside where possible.
  • Maintain low indoor humidity, below 60% relative humidity, ideally 30-50%, if possible.
  • Perform regular building?HVAC inspections and maintenance as schedules.
  • Clean and dry wet or damp spots within 48 hours. 
  • Don't let foundations stay wet. Provide drainage and slope the ground away from the foundation

Soot and Smoke

3/22/2018 (Permalink)

Wildfires can strike almost anywhere. A wildfire can cause more than just the damage that you see. Even if your windows and doors are shut and your vents are closed, smoke and soot particles can enter your property. Your HVAC units and air ducts can hold large quantities of soot and disperse it all over your belongings.

Although a wildfire will burn mostly natural materials, there are times when wildfires burn man-made materials, which can leave soot particle that are difficult to remove. Even if your property didn't suffer fire damage, there may be soot particles and residues left to clean up. SERVPRO of North Knoxville will pretest the soot residues to determine the best method of cleaning, helping to ensure no lingering odors. 

Questions to Consider About Mold Remediation

3/22/2018 (Permalink)

Here are some questions to consider:

  • Are there existing moisture problems in the building?
  • Have building materials been wet more that 48 hours?
  • Are there hidden sources of water or is the humidity too high?
  • Are building occupants reporting health problems?
  • Are building materials or furnishings visibly damaged?
  • Has maintenance been delayed or the maintenance plan been altered?
  • Has the building been recently remodeled or has the building use changed?
  • Is consultation with medical or health professionals indicated?

SERVPRO of North Knoxville's highest priority is to protect the health and safety of the building occupants. It is also important to communicate with building occupants when mold problems are identified. In some cases, especially those involving large areas of contamination, the remediation plan may include temporary relocation of some or all of the building occupants.

Restoring Your Knoxville Commercial Property After A Water Loss

3/13/2018 (Permalink)

Flooding and water damage events at Knoxville commercial properties are often complex with numerous issues that require a knowledgeable and flexible response. Whether we’re dealing with a relatively small water cleanup scenario or a large scale event, we work quickly to assess each unique situation and isolate the damaged area. In many instances, normal operations can continue in a temporary space while we restore your facility.

Restoring Commercial Properties Presents Unique Challenges

Our professionals are trained to be mindful of legal and environmental concerns and strive to fully restore the damaged area while working within your budgetary constraints. We understand that every hour spent cleaning up is an hour of lost revenue and productivity. So when an emergency situation arises in your business, give us a call and we’ll be there fast with the help you need.

About SERVPRO of North Knoxville

SERVPRO of North Knoxville specializes in the cleanup and restoration of commercial and residential property after a water damage event. Our staff is highly trained in property damage restoration. From initial and ongoing training at SERVPRO’s corporate training facility to regular IICRC-industry certification, rest assured our staff is equipped with the knowledge to restore your property.

North Knoxville 24 Hour Emergency Water Damage Service

3/13/2018 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of North Knoxville is available 24 hours a day for water emergencies, large or small. When you are dealing with water damage, immediate action is crucial. A delay of just a few hours can greatly increase the severity of the water damage.

We Answer the Phone Ready to Help
Call Today - 865-947-9992

We understand that when you call us, you may be feeling confused, stressed, and vulnerable. You need an expert to guide you through this crisis. SERVPRO of North Knoxville has the specific water damage training and experience to help you through this tough time. We specialize in water damage restoration—in fact, it's the cornerstone of our business.

What to Expect

When you call, we will ask several questions regarding your water damage emergency. These questions will help us determine what equipment and resources to bring, including how many trained SERVPRO Professionals may be needed.

Our SERVPRO Representative will ask several questions:

  • Your name and contact information
  • Your insurance information (if applicable)
  • The street address of the water-damaged home or business
  • When did the flooding or water damage occur?
  • What caused the water damage (if known)?
  • Is there electricity available (on-site)?

About SERVPRO of North Knoxville

SERVPRO of North Knoxville specializes in the cleanup and restoration of residential and commercial property after a fire, smoke or water damage event. Our staff is highly trained in property damage restoration. From initial and ongoing training at SERVPRO’s corporate training facility to regular IICRC-industry certification, rest assured our staff is equipped with the knowledge to restore your property

Dealing with Spring storms

3/7/2018 (Permalink)

Spring storm season in East Tennessee can be unpredictable. Heavy winds and rain are common and we have already seen a lot of rain in the month of February. During heavy rain events it’s not uncommon for water to end up in a finished or unfinished basement. SERVPRO of North Knoxville can quickly extract the water and set up drying equipment no matter the size of the area affected. There is, however, something to keep in mind: most insurance companies DO NOT cover water losses that come from exterior sources. It’s also important to note that the source needs be stopped before extraction can begin. So when the rain stops and you have water issues in your house be sure to call SERVPRO of North Knoxville!

Mold 101

3/6/2018 (Permalink)

Mold can spread through a home in as little as 48 hours. Don't wait, call us today!

Health concerns may arise when excessive mold grows indoors. Concerns are more likely to arise for “at risk” people, which might include immune suppressed or compromised individuals, young children and individuals with chronic inflammatory lung diseases such as asthma and severe allergies. However, anyone may experience health problems associated with exposure to mold in damp buildings. Possible health effects include: runny nose, sneezing, coughing, aggravation of asthma, sore throat or inflammation of the sinuses. 


Fungi and mold naturally occur in our environment. In fact, over 100,000 kinds of fungi have been identified. Fungi produce some very useful results. Yeast is a type of fungi used in preparing breads, baked goods and other food products, including some alcoholic beverages. The unique flavor of blue cheese is a result of mold. An edible mushroom is simply a type of fungi, and lifesaving penicillin is a product of mold (Penicillin chrysogenum). Even though some forms of mold can add value to our lives, other forms can be harmful. Excessive amounts of mold, different types of mold, and/or exposure to molds may present health concerns for some people.


Intrusion of water into your home or place of business can result in mold growth. Water intrusions can result from storm damage, plumbing or equipment failures, long-standing leaks and poor humidity control. When water intrusions are not addressed right away, the resulting damage can present increased risk of harmful mold growth. Some amount of mold spores are normally present in most environments. If the humidity and moisture levels in a water-damaged environment are not promptly returned to normal, mold spores may grow and multiply. Organic materials found inside a building, such as wood, paper, drywall and insulation, provide food sources for mold to flourish. Excessive mold growth can lead to indoor environmental conditions that pose a health threat.


If you think you might have a mold problem, call 865.947.9992 A SERVPRO® Franchise Professional trained in mold remediation will examine the structure for any visible signs of mold. In the event mold is found, you will be asked to approve and sign a work authorization form prior to any mold cleanup or related work being performed. The technician may also recommend you leave the affected area while the mold cleanup and associated containment process is being safely completed. If extensive mold growth is present, additional assistance may be required. Some situations require the addition of an Indoor Air Quality/Environmental Professional with the specialized equipment and services needed to assess and/or repair property. You may wish to consult your adjuster if needed.


If you suspect the presence of mold, contact SERVPRO® of North Knoxville today! 865.947.9992



Source: SERVPRONet

Mold Tips

12/26/2017 (Permalink)

The dreaded "M" word. Nobody likes to see that they have growth and not knowing the amount of money it is going to take to fix the problem is stressful. Here are a few tips on how to prevent mold growth from starting in the first place:

  • keep the humidity as low as you can- condensation creates a breeding ground
  • be sure your home has enough ventilation
  • fix any leaks in your homes roof, walls, and plumbing
  • clean up and dry out your home within 48 hours after flooding
  • add mold inhibitors to paint before painting
  • clean with mold killing products
  • Remove and replace carpets that cannot be dried promptly

Nothing is 100 percent preventable, but with a few preventative measures you can significantly lessen your chances for losses. If you suspect a growth, be sure to call SERVPRO of North Knoxville. We will be glad to assist you. 

What to do to prepare for a storm

12/26/2017 (Permalink)

Strong gusts of wind? Dark, fast moving clouds? Downpour of rain? These are a few warning signs that a storm is headed in your direction.Here are a few helpful tips on what you can do to prepare for a storm:

  • check the forecast- know what to expect
  • watch for signs of approaching storm- clouds, wind, rain, etc. 
  • check on neighbors who require special assistance- ensure they are in a safe zone and ensure they are prepared 
  • have flashlights and batteries on hand
  • have a battery operated radio
  • have a first aide kit
  • get manual can opener and canned foods
  • stay away from windows and doors

There is no way to be 100% prepared for a storm but you can increase your chances for survival if you take a few preventative measures. 

What to do during a storm

12/26/2017 (Permalink)

If you can hear thunder, remember that you are close enough to be struck by lightening. Seek shelter immediately and do the following:

  • move to a sturdy building or car
  • get out of boats and away from water
  • unplug unnecessary appliances
  • do not take a bath or a shower
  • stay away from windows
  • if flooding is happening, get to higher ground.

One way to ensure you are safe during a natural disaster is to always be prepared.Emergency readiness plans are very useful and come in handy. Practice emergency drills and always think "what if." To help keep children and the elderly safe, practicing these drills will give them the tools to know what to do in dire situations. There are many variables that come in to play and you want to be sure that you are ready for as many as possible. 

Tips to Prevent Water Damage

12/26/2017 (Permalink)

Plants around your home? Gutters full of leaves? Downspouts unattached? High water bills? These are all signs of potential water damage. 

  • be careful where you plant trees and plants- some plants have invasive roots
  • clean out roof gutters- debris causes build up of water with no place to go
  • keep an eye on your water bill- extreme differences could show a leak
  • us a drain snake instead of chemicals- chemicals can potentially eat through your pipes
  • NEVER POUR GREASE DOWN YOUR SINK- even if the water is running, it can and will clog your drains

Damage from water is hard to prevent. With the knowledge discussed in this post, you may be able to lessen your chances of water damage or lessen the amount of damage caused by the water. 

Signs of Mold in House

12/26/2017 (Permalink)

It is awful to find out that what you thought was just a spot of dirt, is actually mold growth. Have you ever moved something, and underneath found what you suspected to be mold? Appliances leaking provides a breeding ground for growth. Here are a few signs that you have mold in your home:

  • smelling a mold odor- sort of like an old book store smell or a basement smell 
  • mold growth- can be confused for dirt spots
  • previous water leaks- under and around the area where there were previous leaks can potentially cause mold growth
  • past flooding
  • excess condensation- bathrooms, kitchens, and any other room that there may be excess moisture are potential hazards

The best way to confirm growth is to call a professional. Mold growth is one of the many things that is best handled by a professional.The trusted team at SERVPRO of North Knoxville will be happy to help!

Water Damage Prevention Tips

12/26/2017 (Permalink)

Here are a few tips to prevent water damage:

  • check hoses and faucets on a regular basis- be sure hoses and faucets are not leaking
  • check tubs and showers- be sure that showers are caulked and shower curtains are tight against the walls
  • know how to shut off your water main- if a leak occurs be sure you are able to shut off the water
  • install flooring pans under appliances to catch any water that could be leaking
  • consider purchasing point of leak alarms- water alarms that work like fire alarms
  • consider purchasing a water flow monitoring system- will let you know how much water you are using at any given time

These are just a few tips to water damage prevention. ALways be aware. 

CHristmas Safety Tips

12/18/2017 (Permalink)

Its Finally here! With less than a week until Santa makes his arrival, it is crunch time. It is easy to over look minor details that could potentially cause HUGE problems. Here are a few tips to keep your family safe this holiday season:

  • Check all strings of lights to ensure there is no damage and they are working properly
  • Be sure to water your Christmas tree often; dry trees will catch fire
  • Be sure to put all candles in a hurricane glass and out of the reach of children and pets
  • Never leave your fireplace unattended and be sure to keep the screen/door closed to prevent hot coals from popping out
  • Be aware of holiday plants that are poisonous to pets and people; keep them out of reach 
  • Make sure you wash your hands after handling strings of Christmas lights as they contain high amounts of lead
  • Be sure to place carbon monoxide alarms around your home 
  • Keep hard candy and nuts out of the reach of small children as it is a choking hazard

With the busyness of the holiday season, it is easy to over look small details or cut corners to get more done. Be sure to be cautious of potential holidays disasters to keep your loved ones out of harms way this year!

What to do and not to Do with Fire Damage

12/12/2017 (Permalink)

When tragedy strikes, people tend to get emotional and do things they wouldn't if they had been in their right state of mind. The best way to eliminate some of these issues, is by practice. Being prepared for emergency situations enhances the likeliness that you will not be at a total loss. Here are a few tips on what to do and what not to do in a fire damage situation:

Do-

  • air out the house to reduce the smoke odor
  • discard any open food packages
  • limit movement in home to prevent soot particles from being integrated into your upholstery and carpeting
  • keep hands clean
  • place clean towels on carpet to prevent more soiling
  • clean and protect chrome with a light coat of vaseline or oil
  • wipe residue from porcelain to prevent etching
  • if electricity is off, empty refrigerator completely and prop doors open
  • wash off house plants on both sides of leaves
  • change air filter on furnace
  • remove pets to clean environments

Don't-

  • attempt to wash walls without consulting SERVPRO
  • use any food or beverages in the home as they may be contaminated
  • use upholstered furniture
  • turn on ceiling fixtures if ceiling is wet
  • attempt to clean carpets or upholstery 
  • use electrical appliances withing the home
  • send garments to an ordinary dry cleaner
  • touch anything

It can be overwhelming to see your home is despair and you want to try to do anything to make the situation feel as if it not so bad. Be sure to contact your local SERVPRO to help lessen your stress. As trained professionals, we are here to help and will try to salvage what we can. 

Company Holiday Party Tips

12/11/2017 (Permalink)

Tis the season for holiday fun and cheer.. and your annual Company Holiday Party! Most people go out of obligation...not want. So this year try a few tips to make your holiday party fun!

  • Choose a location that can accommodate all employees and their family easily
  • Choose a few fun games for employees to play
  • Have fun and get to know each other on a more person, un-work related level

Sometimes, you get so caught up in work, you forget the people you work with are people to. Leave work at the office, let lose, and have some fun! Create an atmosphere that people actually want to be in. 

Simmer Pot Recipes

12/8/2017 (Permalink)

Potpouri

The holiday season has finally arrived! Trees are trimmed, stocking are hung, and Santa will be on his way shortly. All that is left is to ensure your house smells delicious! Air freshener only works for a short while, wax melts are pricey, so why not do it the old fashioned way?! With the use of a pot of water, your stove, and spices or fruit you may already have you can make your home smell like the holidays. Here are a few simmer pot recipes for you to try:

  • Cinnamon sticks, apple peels, orange rinds, and whole cloves
  • lemon peel, orange peel, 2 bay leaves, 3 cinnamon sticks, and 2 tbs. whole cloves
  • orange peels and a few drops of vanilla
  • 1 cup dried lavender, 1 tsp. anise, 1 tbs. nutmeg, 1 tbs. whole cloves, 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 5 bay leaves, 1 tbs. whole cloves, 2 cinnamon sticks

Place the pot of water on the stove on low heat. Add ingredients of your choice and soon your house will smell AMAZING!!!! Add water as needed. Happy Holidays!!!

Holiday Card Etiquette for Businesses

12/4/2017 (Permalink)

Happy Holidays!!!

As business owners, we like to show our clients we appreciate their business and value them as a loyal customer. Sending our holiday cards is just another way of showing them just that. It also plants our business name in their heads. There are certain etiquette guidelines to follow as with everything else. Here are a few tips to use this holiday season:

  • DON'T WAIT- be sure to order your cards early and have them in the mail as quickly as possible. 
  • CHOOSE A QUALITY CARD- do not pick the least expensive option. Choose a card that the recipient will remember and enjoy.
  • DON'T INADVERTENTLY OFFEND THE RECIPIENT- in you are unsure if the recipient celebrates Christmas, send a "Happy Holidays" card in place of Merry Christmas. 
  • HANDWRITE- Hand write your cards and custom print your name. It will not look as professional but it will give the card a personal touch that the recipient will enjoy. 
  • PURCHASE A HOLIDAY STAMP- this gives the card something extra
  • WRITE A PERSONAL MESSAGE- this shows the recipient you value them on a personal level  and that you are celebrating your business relationship rather than mandatorily sending a mass mail. 

These are just a few ideas to keep in minds when sending out greeting cards to the recipients on your mailing list. A few personal touches can go a long way! Happy Holidays from SERVPRO of North Knoxville!!!

Charitable Donations Tips

11/27/2017 (Permalink)

Present

With holiday season in full effect, giving back is one of the most important things to do. Whether you are donating to help the homeless, help underprivileged children, or a local pet shelter, you can kill two birds with one stone. In return for your generosity, you can use the donation as a tax deduction. Here are a few tips when you go to fill you business tax return:

  • Itemize- in some cases it is more beneficial to itemize, rather than use the standard deduction
  • Choose carefully when to make a donation- ensure the place you are donating to is qualified
  • Get a receipt- a receipt for everything gives proof for the IRS.
  • Payroll deductions- do not overlook payroll deductions. 
  • You cannot deduct time
  • You can deduct expenses related to volunteering
  • Document the value of any gift given to a charitable entity
  • Remember there are limits to deductions
  • Calendar- remember that everything has to be done before December 31st of the filing year.

The Holiday Season is about giving and in order to give the most, business owners need to be able to catch some tax breaks. Using a few of these helpful tips, will allow you to u=ensure your business gets the maximum amount of tax breaks. Happy Holiday from SERVPRO of North Knoxville!

Thanksgiving Travel Tips

11/20/2017 (Permalink)

Break In

Enjoying time with friends and family, is what the holidays are all about. Many people travel to be near those that they love. Accidents can happen at anytime and to anyone. Here are a few tips to make your travel plans this holiday season a little safer:

  • Plan ahead: Know where you are going and how you are going to get there. Check for construction on your route and check the weather. 
  • Limit the amount of people that know you are going out of town: Posting on social sites makes it publically known you are gone.
  • Leave your keys with a trusted friend: have them pick up your mail or occasionally turn on television or music
  • Secure all windows and doors: ensure that there are no easy access into your home
  • Timed lights: ensure that the house is lit up at night to try to defer break ins
  • Invest in a home security system: Some home security systems have door cameras, window triggers, and even a laser that can be tripped if somebody enters your home. 

Although break ins are not preventable, there are a few things that you can do to ensure your home has a safety net. These tips will lessen the chances of your home being broken into. 

Tips on how to Gain New Clients

11/13/2017 (Permalink)

In this business, it is difficult to gain new clients because the last thing people want to think about is a disaster striking in their life. We have to ensure that our name is out there so if something does happen, people know who to call. Word of mouth is a great way to gain new clients. People want to know that they are going to be taken care of and that all of their worries will be alleviated. Excellent customer service skills will set us apart from the competition. Here are a few tips on things we can do to have excellent customer service skills:

  • actively listen to clients
  • show empathy
  • take action
  • ensure them that they can trust us
  • give the client progress updates as often as possible
  • always be sure to thank clients 
  • give clients a call 3-6 months later to ensure they are still satisfied and let them know about current specials

All of these tips will help us stand out above the competition. People do not want to have to call us, but we can ensure that they have exceptional service that turns their negative into a positive. 

Water Damage Do's and Don'ts

11/10/2017 (Permalink)

Busted pipe? Leaking water tank? Here are some tips to do and not to do if you experience these issues.

Do:

  • Remove as much water as possible by mopping
  • Remove and set wet upholstery to dry
  • Wipe any excess water from furniture and remove any table top items
  • Place a foil barrier or wood blocks between furniture legs and wet carpeting
  • Turn on A/C to ensure drying in summer
  • Remove any rugs and set them out to dry
  • Place any luggage in sunlight to dry
  • Gather any loose items on the floor

Don't:

  • Leave any wet fabrics in place and try to place items where they will quickly dry
  • Leave magazines, books, or any colored items on wet floor surfaces
  • Use your vacuum to remove excess water
  • Use any appliances while standing on wet floors
  • Turn on ceiling fixtures if ceiling is wet
  • Go into rooms the ceiling is sagging from water damage

Be sure to contact SERVPRO of North Knoxville if you experience any water damage. Financing options are available. 

Christmas Trees

11/10/2017 (Permalink)

Beautiful, live tree

Holiday season is approaching and who doesn't love the look of a real Christmas tree. Choosing your own tree, cutting it down, and taking it home is a great holiday tradition to start with your family. Live trees really seem to put people in the Christmas spirit and make your house smell amazing! If they are not properly cared for, your Christmas spirit could potentially go up in flames! Here are a few tips for this holiday season:

  • Choose a tree that has been freshly cut and has green needles
  • Water your tree DAILY to keep it from drying out
  • Only use flame retardant lights and decorations
  • Ensure there are no frayed wires on holiday lights
  • Do not connect more than 3 strands of mini string light sets
  • Keep your tree at least 3 feet away from ANY heat source
  • Do not block exits with your tree
  • Always unplug lights before leaving the house and before bed
  • Get rid of the tree when needles start turning brown or stop turning the lights on. This means that your tree is drying out
  • Be sure to check that smoke alarms are working properly and that your family knows what to do in case of a fire

While live trees are beautiful, they can be fire hazards. Be sure to take preventative measures, be aware, and be prepared this holiday season to keep your family safe! 

How to Prevent Growth

11/10/2017 (Permalink)

Growth on wall

Spores spread very easily and very quickly. They cannot be completely eradicated even after remediation. Growth can be present ANYWHERE: on carpet, clothing, food, paper, and even places you cannot see. Some commonly effected places are drywall, framing, and in ceiling tiles. Not only is the problem costly and difficult to fix, it can become hazardous to your health. You can develop allergies and even breathing problems from the growth.

Concerned about growth in your home? The best way to prevent growth is moisture control. Here are a few tips on how to control moisture in your home:

  • Identify problem areas within your home and correct them
  • Dry any wet areas IMEDIATELY
  • Prevent moisture with proper ventilation
  • Equip your home with mold resistant products
  • Direct rainwater away from your home
  • Clean roof gutters

Not every growth issue can be foreseen, but there are preventative measures you can take to lessen your chances of this affecting your life. If you suspect a leak or possible growth, give SERVPRO of North Knoxville acall. We will be more than happy to come out and investigate the issue for you!

Emergency Readiness Plan

11/9/2017 (Permalink)

What is an emergency readiness plan and why should your business have one? An emergency readiness plan is standards to facilitate and organize employees' actions during workplace emergencies. It is required bu OSHA to have these safety plans worked out and for employees to know where to find them. The plans cover  the following:

  • Procedures for reporting emergencies
  • Procedures for each type of evacuation and the route to be taken
  • Procedures to account for all employees after evacuation
  • Procedures to be followed by employees attempting to rescue others
  • The name, job title, and contact information of people who need to be aware of these emergency situations

If you have fewer than 10 employees within your company, the plan does not need to be written out. However, expectations and guidelines should be clear so that everybody knows what to do, where to go, and who to contact. Having an ERP boosts your company's capability to recover from financial losses including damages to equipment. If all employees know what action to take, they should be able to assist in assuring that the damage does not spread. Delegating different duties to employees shows them that your trust them in these situations. It takes the entire team ti guarantee that everybody is safe. Empowering employees to play a vital role unifies the company as a whole. 

All employees should know where to find the plan of action and practice different scenarios. These plans are not useful if you do not practice them. The last thing you are going to do if the building is on fire is look up protocol. Practicing different procedures sharpens your skills and ensures you are ready for anything. The more you know about your companies procedures, the more successful you will be in an emergency situation. 

Fall Tips on Preparing Your Home

11/6/2017 (Permalink)

It is that time of year again! Although not every disaster is preventable, there are some things that can be foreseen. There are many preventative measures we can take to help protect our homes. Regularly cleaning the gutters and downspouts can prevent leaves from building up and blocking off pathways for rain water to travel. Another great option is to install gutter guards to prevent leaves from entering in to the gutters from the beining. Either inspect your roof or have a professional do it for you. Replacing cracked or buckling shingles could potentially save you thousands of dollars in the long run. Be cure to check around chimneys, skylights, and pipes to ensure there are no gaps. If water gets in the gaps it could cause serious damage, so using a roof sealer would guarantee that your roof is water proof. Use a screw driver to check the trim around windows, doors, railings, and decks. Caulking any homes and replacing any weak wood is a great preventative measure. As the temperatures drop, it is important to prevent pipes from freezing. Be sure that all of the water is out of hoses and that the water valve has been shut off, to ensure that the pipes do not burst. If you live in a manufactured home, check that all skirting are secured properly and that your pipes have been covered in heat tape. If you know temperatures are going to be very low, leave the water running. A small, steady stream of water running out of your faucets will help keep your pipes from freezing. Disasters can strike at any time and happen to anyone. Small, preventative measures can be taken to lessen the probability of certain things happening to your home. 

A few helpful tips when you have water damage

9/20/2017 (Permalink)

Water can be one of the most destructive forces on earth. SERVPRO of North Knoxville can make your water damage "Like it never even happened". But here a few things you can do immediately following a water damage event in your home:

  • Remove as much excess water as possible by mopping or blotting
  • Wipe excess water from wood furniture after removal of lamps and table top items
  • Remove and prop wet upholstery and pillow cushions for even drying
  • Place aluminum foil or wood blocks between furniture legs and wet carpeting
  • Turn air condition on for maximum drying in summer
  • Remove valuable paintings and art objects to a safe, dry place
  • Gather loose items, toys, etc. from floors

Now leave the rest to our expert professionals! We have the right equipment and expertise to complete the job and give you back your piece of mind.

Back to School Shopping Tips

8/2/2017 (Permalink)

August is here, which means back to school shopping is quickly approaching. Here are a few tips that will help you shop smart and save money.

  1. Make a list- Most schools hand out a list of required school supplies, but for those of you who do not get a supplies list, a good idea would be to check with other parents at your school who have older kids. They could have great advice on what your child needs to succeed in school.
  2. Get what you need, not what you want- Creating a budget can help to separate your child's wants from needs, plus it is a good way to save a few bucks.
  3. Last years leftovers- Take a look at previous year's school supplies and determine what can be reused.

Basement Flooding

5/3/2017 (Permalink)

With all of the rain that has come to Knoxville, many people have found their basements to be flooded with several inches of water. There are precautions to take in order to prevent flooding. If you discover that windows or vents are the reason for flooding, you’ll want to fix the sealants around them. Call a foundation repair specialist if you notice any cracks or damage to your foundation. If you notice your gutters are leaking, allowing large puddles to form around the home instead of being directed through the pipes below the home, excess water can make it’s way easily underneath your home and into your basement.

What Type of Fire Was It?

4/19/2017 (Permalink)

What was burned in a fire plays a key role in determining what can be restored and what must be replaced. The professionals at SERVPRO of North Knoxville deal with many different fires on a regular basis.

  1. Electrical fire- Burning electrical wiring causes smoke damage and a distinct odor which will permeate all porous surfaces.
  2. Kitchen fire- A kitchen fire can result in heavy soot and heat damage in the kitchen with light soot throughout the house.
  3. Grease fire- This type of fire causes smoke damage with a greasy film evenly distributed throughout the surrounding area.
  4. Wood stove fire- This type of fire will have a distinctive odor and distribute smoke and soot throughout a structure.
  5. Kerosene heater fire- A fire of this type will result in smoke damage with an even appearance and a greasy film on metal surfaces.
  6. Furnace puffbacks- A malfunctioning furnace blows greasy soot throughout a structure, covering walls and furniture fairly evenly.
  7. Lightning fire- This type of fire is rare, but lightning strikes on a structure can cause electrical and smoke damage that ranges from very light to heavy.
  8. Cigarette fire- The most serious damage caused by this type of fire is to furniture. These fires cause heavy smoke damage as the result of burning stuffing and padding.

Soot and smoke damage can be extremely destructive no matter the type of fire. Let SERVPRO of North Knoxville handle your fire restoration emergencies quickly and correctly!

Do not always "Do it yourself"

4/12/2017 (Permalink)

Did you know that some "Do it yourself" projects could put you behind bars? Here are the ones you should leave to the professionals:



  • switch up a cooktop

  • disturb old insulation

  • repair your HVAC system

  • replace a hot water tank

  • pump the septic system

  • interact with wildlife

  • knock out a wall

  • tinker with light fixtures

  • install a skylight

  • remove lead based paint

  • cut down a large tree

  • replace a garage door spring

  • take out termites


Click on the link below for more info on how to handle these "Do it yourself" projects the correct and legal way!


Spring Safety Facts and Myths!

4/5/2017 (Permalink)

  • If it is not raining, then there is no danger from lightning.--- This is a myth! Lightning often strikes outside of heavy rain and may occur as far as ten miles away from rainfall. This is especially true in the western United States where thunderstorms sometimes produce very little rain.
  • The rubber soles of shoes or rubber tires on a car protect you from being struck by lightning.--- This is also a myth! Rubber-soled shoes and rubber tires provide no protection from lightning. The steel frame of a hard-topped vehicle provides increased protection if you are not touching metal. Although you may be injured if lightning strikes your car, you are much safer inside a vehicle than outside.
  • "Heat lightning" is a term used to describe lightning from a thunderstorm too far away for thunder to be heard.--- This is a fact!

The University of TN sets a World Record!

3/29/2017 (Permalink)

(Photo by Brianna Paciorka/ Knoxville News Sentinel)

On March 29 of 2017, The University of Tennessee set a world record for the largest human letter to ever be made on a football field! Al Roker helped to make this happen. The massive "Power T" was formed by 4,223, and was held for five minutes. 

Let SERVPRO of North Knoxville Prepare Your Home for the Market

3/22/2017 (Permalink)

Home selling season is upon us here in Knoxville. When selling a home, you want to make sure that you have your home fully prepared to be listed on the market. Presentation is everything, and the impression of musty or moldy odors can negatively impact the asking price of any home. SERVPRO of North Knoxville will inspect a property- including crawl spaces- to help determine the extent of water or mold damage and remove potentially harmful bacteria and odors. This will give buyers and sellers peace of mind and allow sellers to receive top dollar for their home. Before you risk your buyer’s health or the opportunity to close the sale of the property, call your local cleanup and restoration professionals, SERVPRO of North Knoxville, at 865-947-9992.

Proper Use of Smoke Alarms

3/22/2017 (Permalink)

SMOKE ALARMS ARE A KEY PART

of a home fire escape plan. When there is

a fire, smoke spreads fast. Working smoke

alarms give you early warning so you can

get outside quickly.

SAFETY TIPS

  •  Install smoke alarms inside and outside each

bedroom and sleeping area. Install alarms on every

level of the home. Install alarms in the basement.

  •  Large homes may need extra smoke alarms.
  •  It is best to use interconnected smoke alarms.

When one smoke alarm sounds they all sound.

  •  Test all smoke alarms at least once a month. Press

the test button to be sure the alarm is working.

  •  There are two kinds of alarms. Ionization smoke

alarms are quicker to warn about flaming fires.

Photoelectric alarms are quicker to warn about

smoldering fires. It is best to use both types of

alarms in the home.

  •  A smoke alarm should be on the ceiling or high on

a wall. Keep smoke alarms away from the kitchen to

reduce false alarms. They should be at least 10 feet

(3 meters) from the stove.

  •  People who are hard-of-hearing or deaf can use

special alarms. These alarms have strobe lights and

bed shakers.

  •  Replace all smoke alarms when they are 10 years

Old.

Large Desiccant Dehumidifier

3/22/2017 (Permalink)

This dehumidifier is capable of handling large commercial spaces.

SERVPRO of North Knoxville 
Proudly announcing a new way of drying and reducing humidity for the perfect climate control in water disasters, SERVPRO® of North Knoxville is the only company in East Tennessee to own a 950K CDH-138-RL Large Loss Electric Desiccant.  Meeting the demands of larger residential and commercial water restoration jobs with a large-capacity mobile dehumidifier from ARID-Dry™, SERVPRO® of North Knoxville professionals can work more efficiently and with faster time-response.   These skid- and trailer-mounted units are perfectly manufactured for the most proper and substantial vapor pressure reduction and active temperature control management.

What is a Dehumidifier?
The most basic explanation is that a desiccant dehumidifier has a moisture absorbing wheel inside the unit. The wheel is made of silica gel – which is the desiccant (drying) element. Air enters the unit through an opening and travels through the silica gel impregnated wheel. When the air reaches the other side of the wheel it is dry and pushed out of the unit by a high static blower.  Bottom line: it is perhaps the most effective method available of controlling humidity and/or removing moisture from structural materials, hardwood flooring, and providing structural preparation prior to applying coatings.   

Trust SERVPRO of North Knoxville

3/22/2017 (Permalink)

Your home is truly a reflection of you, your tastes and your personality. Suffering damage to your home can feel like a part of you has been damaged as well. We recognize a loss can make you feel vulnerable, invaded or robbed of part of your life. Your loss is unique- in how it started, the emotions you experienced, and the extent of the damage.

When damage affects your home, you want it to be restored to preloss condition. You cannot afford to let the marketability of your home be affected. That is why SERVPRO of North Knoxville has professionally restored property for over 15 years. SERVPRO of North Knoxville is the trusted choice for many insurance companies, because they know SERVPRO of North Knoxville has the experience to do the job right.

Mold Prevention Tips!

3/22/2017 (Permalink)

The key to mold control is moisture control. Solve moisture problems before they become mold problems with these tips:

  • Fix leaky plumbing and leaks in the building envelope as soon as possible.
  • Watch for condensation and wet spots. Fix source(s) of moisture problem(s) as soon as possible.
  • Prevent moisture due to condensation by increasing surface temperature or reducing the moisture level in air (humidity). To increase surface temperature, insulate or increase air circulation. To reduce the moisture level in air, repair leaks, increase ventilation (if outside air is cold and dry), or dehumidify (if outdoor air is warm and humid).
  • Keep heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) drip pans clean, flowing properly, and unobstructed.
  • Vent moisture-generating appliances, such as dryers, to the outside where possible.
  • Maintain low indoor humidity, below 60% relative humidity, ideally 30-50%, if possible.
  • Perform regular building?HVAC inspections and maintenance as schedules.
  • Clean and dry wet or damp spots within 48 hours. 
  • Don't let foundations stay wet. Provide drainage and slope the ground away from the foundation

 

Soot and Smoke

3/22/2017 (Permalink)

Wildfires can strike almost anywhere. A wildfire can cause more than just the damage that you see. Even if your windows and doors are shut and your vents are closed, smoke and soot particles can enter your property. Your HVAC units and air ducts can hold large quantities of soot and disperse it all over your belongings.

Although a wildfire will burn mostly natural materials, there are times when wildfires burn man-made materials, which can leave soot particle that are difficult to remove. Even if your property didn't suffer fire damage, there may be soot particles and residues left to clean up. SERVPRO of North Knoxville will pretest the soot residues to determine the best method of cleaning, helping to ensure no lingering odors. 

Questions to Consider About Mold Remediation

3/22/2017 (Permalink)

Here are some questions to consider:

  • Are there existing moisture problems in the building?
  • Have building materials been wet more that 48 hours?
  • Are there hidden sources of water or is the humidity too high?
  • Are building occupants reporting health problems?
  • Are building materials or furnishings visibly damaged?
  • Has maintenance been delayed or the maintenance plan been altered?
  • Has the building been recently remodeled or has the building use changed?
  • Is consultation with medical or health professionals indicated?

SERVPRO of North Knoxville's highest priority is to protect the health and safety of the building occupants. It is also important to communicate with building occupants when mold problems are identified. In some cases, especially those involving large areas of contamination, the remediation plan may include temporary relocation of some or all of the building occupants.

Mold 101

3/3/2017 (Permalink)

Mold can spread through a home in as little as 48 hours. Don't wait, call us today!

Health concerns may arise when excessive mold grows indoors. Concerns are more likely to arise for “at risk” people, which might include immune suppressed or compromised individuals, young children and individuals with chronic inflammatory lung diseases such as asthma and severe allergies. However, anyone may experience health problems associated with exposure to mold in damp buildings. Possible health effects include: runny nose, sneezing, coughing, aggravation of asthma, sore throat or inflammation of the sinuses. 


Fungi and mold naturally occur in our environment. In fact, over 100,000 kinds of fungi have been identified. Fungi produce some very useful results. Yeast is a type of fungi used in preparing breads, baked goods and other food products, including some alcoholic beverages. The unique flavor of blue cheese is a result of mold. An edible mushroom is simply a type of fungi, and lifesaving penicillin is a product of mold (Penicillin chrysogenum). Even though some forms of mold can add value to our lives, other forms can be harmful. Excessive amounts of mold, different types of mold, and/or exposure to molds may present health concerns for some people.


Intrusion of water into your home or place of business can result in mold growth. Water intrusions can result from storm damage, plumbing or equipment failures, long-standing leaks and poor humidity control. When water intrusions are not addressed right away, the resulting damage can present increased risk of harmful mold growth. Some amount of mold spores are normally present in most environments. If the humidity and moisture levels in a water-damaged environment are not promptly returned to normal, mold spores may grow and multiply. Organic materials found inside a building, such as wood, paper, drywall and insulation, provide food sources for mold to flourish. Excessive mold growth can lead to indoor environmental conditions that pose a health threat.


If you think you might have a mold problem, call 865.947.9992 A SERVPRO® Franchise Professional trained in mold remediation will examine the structure for any visible signs of mold. In the event mold is found, you will be asked to approve and sign a work authorization form prior to any mold cleanup or related work being performed. The technician may also recommend you leave the affected area while the mold cleanup and associated containment process is being safely completed. If extensive mold growth is present, additional assistance may be required. Some situations require the addition of an Indoor Air Quality/Environmental Professional with the specialized equipment and services needed to assess and/or repair property. You may wish to consult your adjuster if needed.


If you suspect the presence of mold, contact SERVPRO® of North Knoxville today! 865.947.9992



Source: SERVPRONet

Emergency Ready Profile

2/7/2017 (Permalink)

Preparation is a key component for making it through any size disaster, whether it’s a small water leak, a large fire or an area flood. The best time for planning for such events is not when the event happens, but well before it happens. No one ever plans on a disaster, but you can plan for it. Now is the time to ask yourself, “Are you ready for whatever could happen?” The SERVPRO® Emergency Ready Profile is a start up approach that provides the critical information needed to begin mitigation and recovery services. It is designed to serve as a quick reference of important building and contact information. By working with SERVPRO’s Emergency Ready Profile, your business will receive the benefit of over 40 years of experience in reducing the impact of any natural or man-made disaster. SERVPRO® is a leader in water and fire damage response and can help you quickly get your property back in working order, 'Like it never even happened'.

By developing a SERVPRO® Emergency Ready Profile for your 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 business. As many as 50% of businesses may never recover following a disaster, according to the latest industry research. Of the businesses that do survive, the overwhelming majority of them had a preparedness plan in place. Pre-planning can serve as an insurance policy aimed at peace of mind. 

If you are interested in protecting your business, give us a call to schedule your Emergency Ready Profile today! Best of all, IT'S FREE!! 

- Source:SERVPRONet

Improve Indoor Air Quality

1/26/2017 (Permalink)

When is the last time you changed your air filter?

Well, it's that time of year again where we're all stuck indoors either staring at each other, or our smartphones, all day long because Mother Nature refuses to cooperate with any outside plans. Which brings me to my question: When's the last time you changed your air filter for your house? I know, right? Had to really think about it…and if that's the case, it's time to change it, trust me! You see, your air filter is like the lint trap in your dryer, and NEEDS to be changed at least every two months, if not every month. In the wintertime it's suggested to change every month and upgrade your filter since we're all stuck indoors a lot more than usual, and so the collection of particulates in the air is greater. So increase your air quality by changing your filter pronto! It also helps increase the functionality of your HVAC system to run more efficiently as well. A dirty air filter is one of the main causes for system breakdowns. When your air filter is maxed out with dust and such, your system has to work double time to do it's job. This will reflect on your your utility bill & can also cause your unit to overheat and cost you more money! So run, don't walk, to get your replacement filter (and one for next month!) today!  

Tis The Season For Unexpected Guests & Disasters

10/31/2016 (Permalink)

Keep the party going, and leave the clean-up to us!

As the holidays approach, every one begins to prepare their home for upcoming festivities. Hanging decorations, cleaning the house, and making room for guests are all part of the process. But what do you do when the unexpected happens, and you've got a house full of people & food? You call SERVPRO of North Knoxville! Whether it's a small kitchen fire from attempting one of Grandma's recipes, or an overflowed bathtub from an adventurous nephew pretending to be Jacques Cousteau, we've got you covered! Our highly trained staff  is on call 24/7 to help you get your life back to normal...or as normal as it can be with a house full of your relatives! We're here to make it like it never even happened. We just can't help with the family holiday arguments...That's one area we'll leave to you!

How to prevent a Fireplace Fiasco!

10/24/2016 (Permalink)

Better to look like this, than have a fireplace fiasco!

As the temperatures finally begin to drop, we know that you may be tempted to fire up that fireplace of yours! But before you do, your chimney may be in need of some light maintenance. We've gathered some information to help you do it yourself. If you want your fireplace to operate in Chim-Chim-Cher-ee fashion this winter, don't skip the annual chimney sweep and maintenance! Unclean chimneys are a leading cause of structure fires, according to the National Fire Protection Association, which recommends an annual chimney inspection & cleaning.

 

Here's what you'll need:

• Flashlight                   • Chimney Brush

• Goggles                     • Face Mask

• Knife                          • Broom & Dustpan

• Gloves                       • Old Sheets/Drop Cloth

 

Right now is the perfect time to check, because you don't want to start a fire for the first time in winter without performing a preliminary inspection of your fireplace system. How do you know if your chimney needs some TLC? Take a flashlight and look into your chimney. Take a knife and scrape a bit of soot off of the wall. If it is more than 1/8 inches thick, get your gloves on because it's cleaning time!

If this is the first time you've ever cleaned your fireplace, be sure to check for nesting animals and critters who may have made a home there. Be gentle with the eviction process, and be sure you are wearing the protective gear just in case they are fiesty!

**Before this next step - please make sure that you have a partner to monitor your safety! Next, it's time to measure the chimney. It's okay to overestimate but try to be as accurate as possible. This can be accomplished by climbing on the roof and measuring down or measuring up through the fireplace. The size and shape of the flue is important to jot down as well. It can be round or square, 6" or 8".

Once you've determined the size & lengths of the tools needed, it may be a good idea to either cover up your furniture if you don't plan to move it. If you plan to clean from above via the roof, drape off the opening of the fireplace with an old sheet or drop cloth to prevent any soot from billowing out into your space! If this does happen, give SERVPRO of North Knoxville a call!

It’s time to grab a chimney brush, goggles, a broom and dustpan and a face mask. Cleaning from the top down with a weighted brush requires up and down motions as you scrape away debris. Cleaning from the bottom up requires a partner on the roof to help scrub with a pulley system. After cleaning there will be lots of debris on the floor. Be careful sweeping and discarding!

Now it's time to light the celebratory fire, and enjoy a warm beverage with loved ones!

Fall Duct Cleaning Special!

10/3/2016 (Permalink)

Call SERVPRO of North Knoxville today to schedule your duct cleaning for the fall & get 20% off! 

Here are some reasons to have your ducts cleaned from HomeAdvisor.com:

     Duct cleaning is one of those tasks that it's easy to forget about. Since ducts and vents are often overlooked, many homeowners might not even remember the last time they had them attended to. The fact is, however, that duct and vent cleaning may have health advantages, and might even reduce your energy bills, and extend the life of your forced air system.


     One thing to consider when you're thinking about vent and duct cleaning is the fact that indoor air quality is decreasing. This is due in part to the popularity of high-efficiency windows, doors, and increased insulation that reduce the amount of air transfer between inside and outside. Though these fixtures are great when it comes to reducing energy costs and making a room more comfortable, they are often not supplemented with any additional ventilation, causing pollutants that enter the home to remain inside instead of leaking out through drafty windows and gaps.


If you have additional questions, feel free to give us a call to schedule your free estimate! 865.947.9992

October is Fire Prevention Awareness Month

10/3/2016 (Permalink)

Don't let this happen in your home. But if it does, we're here to make it like it never even happened!

Here are some helpful tips from SERVPRO of North Knoxville & FEMA!

 

 

Each year more than 2,500 people die and 12,600 are injured in home fires in the United States, with direct property loss due to home fires estimated at $7.3 billion annually.  Home fires can be prevented!

To protect yourself, it is important to understand the basic characteristics of fire. Fire spreads quickly; there is no time to gather valuables or make a phone call. In just two minutes, a fire can become life-threatening. In five minutes, a residence can be engulfed in flames.

Most home fires occur in the kitchen while cooking and are the leading cause of injuries from fire. Common causes of fires at night are carelessly discarded cigarettes, sparks from fireplaces without spark screens or glass doors, and heating appliances left too close to furniture or other combustibles. These fires can be particularly dangerous because they may smolder for a long period before being discovered by sleeping residents.

Home fires are preventable! The following are simple steps that each of us can take to prevent a tragedy.

Cooking

  • Stay in the kitchen when you are frying, grilling, or broiling food. If you leave the kitchen for even a short period of time, turn off the stove.
  • Wear short, close-fitting or tightly rolled sleeves when cooking.
  • Do not cook if you are sleepy, have been drinking alcohol, or have taken medicine that makes you drowsy.
  • Keep children away from cooking areas by enforcing a "kid-free zone" of 3 feet around the stove.
  • Position barbecue grills at least 10 feet away from siding and deck railings, and out from under eaves and overhanging branches.

Smoking

  • If you smoke, smoke outside. Most home fires caused by smoking materials start inside the home. Put your cigarettes out in a can filled with sand.
  • Make sure cigarettes and ashes are out. The cigarette really needs to be completely stubbed out in an ashtray. Soak cigarette butts and ashes in water before throwing them away. Never toss hot cigarette butts or ashes in the trash can.
  • Check for cigarette butts. Chairs and sofas catch on fire fast and burn fast. Don't put ashtrays on them. If people have been smoking in the home, check for cigarettes under cushions.
  • Never smoke in a home where oxygen is used, even if it is turned off. Oxygen can be explosive and makes fire burn hotter and faster.
  • Be alert - don’t smoke in bed! If you are sleepy, have been drinking, or have taken medicine that makes you drowsy, put your cigarette out first.

Electrical and Appliance Safety

  • Frayed wires can cause fires. Replace all worn, old or damaged appliance cords immediately and do not run cords under rugs or furniture.
  • Buy electrical products evaluated by a nationally recognized laboratory, such as Underwriters Laboratories (UL).
  • If an appliance has a three-prong plug, use it only in a three-slot outlet. Never force it to fit into a two-slot outlet or extension cord.
  • Use electrical extension cords wisely; never overload extension cords or wall sockets.
  • Immediately shut off, then professionally replace, light switches that are hot to the touch and lights that flicker.

Portable Space Heaters

  • Keep combustible objects at least three feet away from portable heating devices.
  • Buy only heaters evaluated by a nationally recognized laboratory, such as Underwriters Laboratories (UL).
  • Check to make the portable heater has a thermostat control mechanism, and will switch off automatically if the heater falls over.
  • Check with your local fire department on the legality of kerosene heater use in your community.
  • Only use crystal clear K-1 kerosene in kerosene heaters. Never overfill it. Use the heater in a well-ventilated room.

Fireplaces and Woodstoves

  • Inspect and clean woodstove pipes and chimneys annually and check monthly for damage or obstructions.
  • Never burn trash, paper, or green wood.
  • Use a fireplace screen heavy enough to stop rolling logs and big enough to cover the entire opening of the fireplace to catch flying sparks.
  • Make sure the fire is completely out before leaving the house or going to bed.
  • Store cooled ashes in a tightly sealed metal container outside the home.

Children

  • Take the mystery out of fire play by teaching children that fire is a tool, not a toy.
  • Store matches and lighters out of children's reach and sight, preferably in a locked cabinet.
  • Teach children not to pick up matches or lighters they may find. Instead, they should tell an adult immediately.
  • Never leave children unattended near operating stoves or burning candles, even for a short time.
  • Check under beds and in closets for burned matches, evidence your child may be playing with fire.

More Prevention Tips

  • Avoid using lighted candles.
  • Never use the range or oven to heat your home.
  • Replace mattresses made before the 2007 Federal Mattress Flammability Standard. Mattresses made since then are required by law to be safer.
  • Keep combustible and flammable liquids away from heat sources.
  • Portable generators should NEVER be used indoors and should only be refueled outdoors or in well ventilated areas.

Smoke Alarms

A properly installed and maintained smoke alarm is the only thing in your home that can alert you and your family to a fire 24 hours a day, seven days a week. A working smoke alarm significantly increases your chances of surviving a deadly home fire.

  • Install both ionization AND photoelectric smoke alarms, OR dual sensor smoke alarms, which contain both ionization and photoelectric smoke sensors
  • Test batteries monthly.
  • Replace batteries in battery-powered and hard-wired smoke alarms at least once a year (except non-replaceable 10-year lithium batteries)
  • Install smoke alarms on every level of your home, including the basement. The U.S. Fire Administration recommends installing smoke alarms both inside and outside of sleeping areas.
  • Always follow the manufacturer’s installation instructions when installing smoke alarms.
  • Replace the entire smoke alarm unit every 8-10 years or according to manufacturer’s instructions.
  • Never disable a smoke alarm while cooking – it can be a deadly mistake. Open a window or door and press the “hush” button, wave a towel at the alarm to clear the air, or move the entire alarm several feet away from the location.

For More Information visit https://www.usfa.fema.gov/

 

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