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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

Archived Blog Posts

Types of damage a toilet overflow can cause

2/3/2022 (Permalink)

A flooded toilet can cause damage on one or more floors of a home in Gainesville, GA. You should immediately contact a plumber upon noticing signs of a blocked drain line and take measures to limit sewer damage. Here are some of the types of damage a toilet overflow can cause.

Contaminated Water

Water from a toilet overflow is almost always contaminated. Restoration professionals categorize water damage into three categories:

  • Category One clean water, originating from supply lines
  • Category Two contaminated water, from showers or appliances
  • Category Three contaminated water containing solid waste

Water from a flooded toilet is likely either Category Two gray water or Category Three black water. Either category of sewer damage calls for disinfection in addition to cleaning and drying.

Damaged Building Materials

Contaminated water can permeate porous materials such as carpet or drywall. These materials cannot be completely disinfected, and may pose a continued risk of microbial growth. For this reason, mitigation experts recommend tearing out these materials prior to disinfecting and drying the area. Carpet, drywall, or damaged ceilings on a lower floor can be replaced during the restoration process.

Secondary Damage Risks

If damage is not cleaned up quickly or disinfected, there may be an increased risk of several types of secondary damage. Here are a few of the most common forms of additional damage:

• Bacteria
• Staining
• Mold

Immediate mitigation and timely cleanup can limit the extent of primary and secondary damage. Try to keep water from spreading until a plumber arrives to clear the drain line blockage.

If you are not sure how to handle sewer damage, rely on a sewage company in Gainesville, GA. Although homeowners’ insurance probably will not cover the drain blockage, the damage that results should be covered. This may not be the case if the issue is due to a backup in an outside sewer or drain.

Reduce Mold Spores

2/3/2022 (Permalink)

Every building contains mold spores. The presence of spores is not a problem, but it can quickly become one if the environment is conducive to mold growth. From air filtration to carpet cleaning, there are four ways to lower the number of spores present in a commercial structure and prevent colonies from forming.

1. Keep the Premises Clean

Thoroughly cleaning the interior of a commercial structure can eliminate many spores. Regularly dust surfaces and use HEPA-certified vacuums. It is also a good idea to lay out mats by the door to prevent dirt and spores from getting tracked inside. Have carpets and upholstery professionally cleaned several times a year.

2. Change Filters and Clean Air Ducts

Change HVAC filters on a regular basis and consider using HEPA-certified replacement filters. Other than carpet cleaning, this is one of the best ways to stop spores from circulating through a structure. Mold may also form in the HVAC system, particularly in moist components such as condensate drip pans, AC coils, and in ductwork. Schedule an air duct cleaning if you notice a moldy odor or any indication of mold problems.

3. Run a HEPA Filtration System

A HEPA air filtration system can also eliminate spores in an office space. Mold spores range from one micron all the way up to 100 microns in size. Look for a filter rated for mold and regularly clean or replace filtration components.

4. Take Out the Trash

Encourage employees to discard food packaging into receptacles that are emptied on a regular basis. It is also a good idea to avoid leaving coffee cups around an office.

Carpet cleaning, air filtration, and proper disposal can reduce spore levels in a building and prevent mold problems. Regular upkeep is necessary to stop spore buildup. If you think mold may be growing, call a commercial mitigation service in Gainesville, GA.

How to mitigate damage after a fire

2/1/2022 (Permalink)

Fire Restoration

No matter the extent to which they spread, flames that break out in your building can prompt a lengthy rebuilding time. Fire alone can cause significant damage to your commercial property in Gainesville, GA, but fire cleanup is only one part of the mitigation process. Smoke and water cleanup are also necessities. There are several steps fire restoration experts have to take to bring your building back to normal.

1. Removal of Damaged Items

The first thing technicians will probably do is clear out the area that was affected by the fire. All furniture, office supplies, equipment and files are taken from the space. Damage drywall, flooring and ceiling tiles also need to be removed.

2. Control of Excess Moisture

When the temperature rises in the building and sets off the sprinkler system, thousands of gallons of water pour into your building. Firefighters pump even more water in to douse the flames. Before anything can be fixed, water cleanup must occur. Excess water is siphoned out, and surfaces are dried.

3. Removal of Smoke and Soot

Smoke and soot get everywhere during a fire. Fire damage repair experts use certain techniques for smoke cleanup that mimic the conditions of the fire to grab these particles even from tight crevices.

4. Disinfection of Remaining Surfaces

After everything is dry and smoke has been remediated, technicians will disinfect every surface to remove bacteria or any other germs. They use industrial cleaners and special equipment to ensure that the environment will be a safe place when employees return.

5. Restoration of Interior

Once all the surfaces have been cleaned, the restoration team can rebuild the damaged interior structures and begin moving clean, salvaged items back into the building. The building can be occupied after this is complete.

While it's understandable that the fire is your focus, keep in mind that fire remediation usually includes water cleanup as well. Your mitigation experts will need to do both to make the building usable again.

What insurance covers if your business is affected by fire?

2/1/2022 (Permalink)

Smoke damage from a fire can affect your business in Gainesville, GA, in many ways, and it’s easy to feel overwhelmed if you’re unsure what costs your insurance company will cover. Understanding what expenditures your insurance is likely to pay can help you eliminate stress throughout the cleanup process.

1. Property Damage

After a fire, many items in your business may be destroyed, and insurance should be able to compensate you for your losses. Even if some things in your building were left untouched by the fire itself, water from hoses or sprinklers can damage articles within them. Often, a cleanup and restoration company can assist you in taking inventory and provide you with an estimate of what items have been harmed and what can be repaired.

2. Smoke and Soot

In addition to causing destruction to articles within your building, a fire can leave behind smoke and soot damage. They can affect the structure of your property, and it’s often necessary to thoroughly clean and restore a business that has been rampaged by a fire. In some instances, major soot and smoke damage may require you to replace structures in your building. Luckily, fire insurance should cover the costs of smoke cleaning.

3. Business Interruption

If a business needs to temporarily close in order to make repairs, the costs of lost revenue can quickly add up over time. However, cleaning a building and making important renovations can be time-consuming, and complex repairs should not be rushed. Insurance companies will generally cover the costs of this interruption, allowing you to focus on restoring your establishment to its original state.

When a fire results in property damage, smoke damage and a temporary business shutdown, your insurance company will generally cover the cost of those expenses. If your enterprise requires renovation, it can be helpful to contact the experts in commercial fire damage restoration.

Tips for dealing with flood damage

2/1/2022 (Permalink)

Flood damage doesn’t just make your home uncomfortable; it can also cause additional problems if not handled properly. If you suffer from flood damage, or any kind of water damage, it’s important that you contact the professionals at SERVPRO to clean up as more dangers can be caused if it’s not done correctly. These are some of the steps that must be taken to avoid these problems following water damage.

Only Use Emergency Generators Outside

Emergency generators release exhaust and fumes that can make the house uncomfortable. To avoid exposing yourself and your family to these gases, these generators should only be run outside and far away from the home where they won’t cause any problems for the occupants of the home. Also, keep the generator away from any openings such as windows and doors as this gives the fumes another opportunity to enter the house and cause trouble for those inside.

Remove Water-Soaked Porous Materials

Any porous materials such as wallboard, insulation, carpeting, wood paneling, or wallpaper have the potential to develop mildew or mold when they get wet. Mold and mildew can be difficult to get rid of and can force the homeowner to order an expensive restoration. To avoid the potential of these issues water damaged porous materials must be removed quickly after being damaged before the mold or mildew has the ability to develop.

Disinfect and Test Flooded Drinking Water Wells

If you have a drinking water well that has been flooded, it many have been contaminated with waterborne pathogens and should be disinfected and tested. First you should disinfect the well water with bleach. Then, several days later, test the water to ensure that it’s safe to drink. If it has been contaminated, the water shouldn’t be used for drinking or cooking. There is a four-step process that will guide you to getting your well back into service.

Refrain from Using Plumbing

After a flood occurs in a home, the septic system needs some time to properly dry out. During that time, you should refrain from using the home’s plumbing such as toilets, sinks, showers, or doing laundry. This will help to prevent any sewage backups inside or outside the home which could result in the existence of bacteria, viruses, and other germs.

Flooded Heating and Air Conditioning

Heating and air conditioning systems that have been exposed to flood water could be damaged causing either repair or replacement. Natural gas furnaces, space heaters, and boilers contain gas valves and controls that could corrode if they’re exposed to flood water. Propane systems should be dealt with the same as natural gas-fired equipment except that propane systems have a gas pressure regulator which is used to sense outside pressure. This regulator is a small vent that’s in the body of the machine and should remain unobstructed at all times. Debris from flood water could cause a dangerous malfunction or corrosion. If you’re using electric heat, it should be unplugged and allowed to dry while a heat pump should be cleaned, dried, and disinfected before being used again. If your heating system needs to be repaired or replaced following a flood, make sure to check for asbestos that may be a result of the damage. 

A home that has suffered flood damage can be very uncomfortable to live in until it has been properly restored. While property has likely been damaged and possibly ruined, there is also the possibility of bacteria and viruses that could cause serious health effects for those in the building. If you’ve suffered flood damage in your home, you should immediately call on the professionals at SERVPRO of Gainesville, GA to remediate the problem.

Faster to any disaster

12/3/2021 (Permalink)

When a storm or water disaster strikes a commercial facility in Gainesville, the concerns of the business owner are very different from that of a homeowner. The old saying “time is money” is especially true when confronted with the reality that your business is under assault and being destroyed by storm damage. Fires, floods, hurricanes, tornadoes, or broken water mains can cause serious damage to your Gainesville commercial facility. The reality that your business is slipping away can be overwhelming. When your livelihood is directly threatened by a storm disaster, call SERVPRO of Gainesville and we’ll make it “Like it never even happened.”

When Water Damage Happens To Your Business...

Fortunately, SERVPRO of Gainesville is the only name you need to know when water disasters happen. Our experts will use their years of experience to create a fast and comprehensive plan to help you get back to business as soon as possible.

We create a full estimate for all mitigation and repairs then keep you involved with timely updates throughout the restoration process. SERVPRO is a preferred service provider with most insurance companies in Hall County and Gainesville, GA and we can work directly with them from start to finish. We understand that saving your property and reopening your business as quickly and safely as possible is especially important when you have a business to run and your employees count on you for their livelihood.  

Help Is Just a Call Away When a Storm Disaster Occurs In Gainesville

When facing a storm disaster, action must be taken now; call SERVPRO of Gainesville immediately, no matter what time of day or night. We have a live person to answer your call 24/7. Our emergency response dispatch will send highly trained and Certified Restoration Technicians to save the day. Just make one phone call to start the process of getting back into business.

SERVPRO of Gainesville 770-536-1010.

Time Is Money... Secure Your Structure From Secondary Damage

The longer a facility sits with water or fire damage, the more time and money it takes to be fully restored. One critical action to help minimize secondary damage is to make sure that the structure is properly secured from top to bottom. If needed, we can set up temporary fencing and board up exterior walls, entry-doors and tarp rooftops for full security to prevent further damage from the outside elements.  

No Disaster Job In Gainesville is Too Big For Us

For extreme disasters that require more manpower and equipment, we have a nationwide network of SERVPRO franchises to call on. We’ll be the first to arrive onsite and we can call our Disaster Recovery Teams to ramp up to fit any size disaster. We’ll get you reopened as fast and as safely as possible with the peace of mind that saving your business is our only business.

There's never a convenient time for fire or water damage to strike. Every hour spent cleaning up is an hour of lost revenue and productivity. So when an emergency situation arises with your Indianapolis business, give us a call and we'll be there fast with the help you need.

Call SERVPRO of Gainesville, 770-536-1010, we’re faster to any size disaster.  

Do you need a fire remediation expert?

12/3/2021 (Permalink)

Fire damage to your home can be traumatic. In addition to the destruction from heat, your property and belongings can be damaged by smoke and soot. Smoke particles can coat walls, ceilings, and almost any surface and cause permanent damage if not cleaned quickly and efficiently.

The particles in the smoke contain unburned carbon that can be difficult to remove after a fire. Furthermore, not all particles are alike, and it takes a multi-step process to eliminate them. It’s a job for professionals who have years of training and expertise in fire damage restoration. Here are some strategies that professionals use to get rid of smoke and soot damage from your property. 

Strategies are developed based on the type of residue

Here at SERVPRO of Gainesville, our expert team evaluates the type of smoke residue and prepares a plan accordingly. Dry smoke residue is easier to clean than wet smoke residue. As dry smoke residue does not stain the surface as intensely as wet smoke residue, it is easier to remove by wiping. In these cases, our IICRC certified technicians use less aggressive methods to clean surfaces.

Wet smoke residues, on the other hand, are significantly harder to clean. The heat streams during a fire can drive these smoke particulates deep into cracks, crevices, and porous surfaces, further exacerbating the difficulty of cleanup. SERVPRO of Gainesville technicians uses a variety of methods such as wet cleaning, foam cleaning, and abrasive cleaning to mitigate the damage caused by wet smoke residues.

Deodorizing

Smoke and soot pose another challenge during the restoration process—the odor. If proper precautions are not taken during restoration, the scent can linger long after the fire. SERVPRO of Gainesville technicians uses Ultra Low Volume (ULV) foggers, heat foggers, deodorizing beads, and other methods to combat odors. Our technicians have years of experience in managing odors after fires of all sizes. We get your home smelling like home again in no time. 

Call SERVPRO of Gainesville at (770) 536-1010 today to talk to one of our fire restoration experts.

We're always here to help

12/3/2021 (Permalink)

Why SERVPRO

 “Thank You for Choosing SERVPRO, We are Always Here to Help”

When calling SERVPRO you are greeted with our friendly and accurate greeting.  Our Office Staff and Professional Team are thankful you have chosen SERVPRO for your emergency services and we are always here to help.  We provide 24/7 emergency service for any size disaster.  SERVPRO is a trusted leader in the Industry and has access to over 1,700 Franchises.  Our network allows us to be faster to any disaster no matter the size.  Each franchise has the training, experience, and equipment to quickly get your property and life back to the way it was.

Restoring property is less expensive than replacing property. Our professionals have immediate response time to limit the amount of damage.  With a quick response there is less expense to the homeowner and your insurance carrier.  We work directly with your adjuster to save our customer time and prioritize their claim. 

Not only is residential property a priority but commercial as well.  Time down is money lost and our professionals act promptly to assure your business is back up and running in a timely manner.  SERVPRO has developed the most extensive performance guidelines in the industry.  These guidelines assure you receive the best restoration service in the industry. 

During the time of a large loss or disaster, SERVPRO is composed of the best of the best restoration professional disaster team. Our elite large-loss specialists are prequalified and strategically positioned throughout the United States to handle large losses. 

At SERVPRO, the difference is our ability to dispatch trained production professionals When seeking the best of the best, call your local SERVPRO franchise for mitigation and large loss recovery. “Thank you for Choosing SERVPRO, We are Always here to Help”.

Things that can cause fire and water damage in the winter

12/1/2021 (Permalink)

Hot chocolate. Warm blankets. Snuggling. Snow angels. Holiday decor. Christmas movies. Any of that sound familiar? It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas … and winter. All of those things are all fine and dandy and reasons why a large part of the population loves the winter season. However, there are some things that can happen during the winter that you may not love so much.  

Fire damage and water damage are two things that can happen and are never any fun. It can be a result of a number of things, so we encourage you to be on the lookout for things that can cause fire damage and/or water damage during the winter at your residential or commercial property. In the event it does happen, SERVPRO® of Gainesville can make it “Like it never even happened.”   

Things that can cause fire damage during the winter:

  1. Candles
  2. Cooking
  3. Christmas trees
  4. Holiday decor
  5. Heating units 

Things that can cause water damage during the winter:

  1. Frozen pipes
  2. Leaking water heater
  3. Snow melting on the roof
  4. Overflowing gutters
  5. Poorly or non-insulated pipes 

If any of those things cause fire damage or water damage at your home or business this winter, just contact the heroes at SERVPRO® of Gainesville. We’ll come to your family’s rescue.  

We pray your winter and holiday season is emergency-free. If it’s not, just remember, SERVPRO® of Gainesville is a 24/7, 365 emergency service Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration™ company that will be there for you and your family during your emergency. Call anytime: 770-536-1010

How to prepare for a winter storm

12/1/2021 (Permalink)

Take the time to prepare a winter survival kit for your home

The winter kits should include several days of non-perishable items, such as bread, crackers, cereal, canned foods, and dried fruits. An emergency supplies list should include an alternate way to stay warm during a power failure, such as kerosene for a kerosene heater or extra blankets, sleeping bags, and warm winter coats.

Ensure that you have matches, a first aid kit with instruction manual, candles, flashlight or battery-powered lantern, battery-powered radio, battery-powered clock or watch, extra batteries, non-electric can opener, snow shovel, rock salt, any special needs items (diapers, hearing aid batteries, medications, and so forth)

Prepare your home for the coming storm

If you plan to use a fireplace or wood stove for emergency heating, ensure that your chimney or flue has been inspected. Ensure that there is a working smoke detector and a battery-operated carbon monoxide detector near the area to be heated.

Make sure to have a communication checklist

Listen to emergency broadcasts and weather forecasts. Get your phone batteries charged, and all devices that you may use.

Make a family communication plan. Your family may not be together during a winter event, so it is important to know how you will contact one another, how you will get back together, and what you will do during an emergency.

Look over your car and emergency checklist

Get gas in your car ahead of the storm. Check your antifreeze, oil, and wiper fluid.

Clogged toilet

12/1/2021 (Permalink)

Dealing with an overflowing toilet in your home is frustrating, especially if the situation seems to frequently occur. Along with the mess it leaves behind, a flooded toilet can quickly lead to water damage in other areas of the home. As well as potentially being a costly endeavor, repair is made worse by the fact that the toilet could be a sign of a bigger sewer damage issue.

Toilet Problems

In most situations, there are three main reasons for a toilet overflowing:

Clogged Lines: This is the most frequent culprit, and a plunger often can fix the issues. In some cases, the clog may be too far down the line, a situation which may require calling a plumber. Frequent clogs may indicate it is time for a new toilet as well as serve as a reminder to only flush waste and toilet paper.
Blocked Vents: Plumbing fixtures store air and release it when flushing. Debris in vents can quickly lead to clogs that make toilets begin to drain more slowly or stop altogether.
Sewer Issues: The plumbing in your home is connected to the outside world. If the main line to the sewer is clogged or broken, it can cause sewage backup. Along with toilet issues, there may be leaks in the basement or around other drains.

Professional Cleanup
When the culprit is sewer damage, it means that the overflowing water is contaminated and should be handled by a sewage company. Considered black water, it contains potentially harmful pathogens and microorganisms. If the overflowing water had waste in it, it is best to contact a water remediation and restoration expert to handle the problem. Along with having the proper safety gear for the process, they have the know-how to detect additional damage and ensure that the cleanup is done properly. This guarantees your bathroom and affected areas are safe and clean.
While a toilet issue may seem like something that is easy to deal with, checking that there is no sewer damage is imperative before diving into cleanup.

Household appliances and water damage

11/30/2021 (Permalink)

At SERVPRO of Gainesville we have seen our share of water damages caused by everyday household appliances. Hot water heaters, dishwashers, washing machines and refrigerators are all common sources. But there are preventative measures you can take to make your appliances less susceptible to water damage.

Get your hot water heater inspected at least once a year by a certified electrician. Water heater issues occur with malfunctioning temperatures, or bad plumbing connections. With a dishwasher and washing machine, most water damages occur when you use too much detergent or have bad fixtures. Check your water hoses regularly for cracks or tears and get them repaired if the damage looks problematic.

When it comes to your refrigerator, most water damages occur from freezer and ice maker issues. If the drain at the bottom of the freezer clogs or becomes frozen, water accumulates and can cause a problem. If you notice an unusually large amount of ice, chances are you will need to thaw out your freezer and clean the drain.

Regular maintenance on these household appliances can save you time and money by preventing a water damage from happening in your home. If you experience a water damage due to a faulty appliance, call SERVPRO of Gainesville at 770-536-1010. We guarantee to help make your water damage feel “Like it never even happened.”

What to do after a fire at your business

11/30/2021 (Permalink)

Suffering a fire at your business fire at your business can be a difficult experience. Many times a fire in a business can shut down the business for a while depending on the damage. While a fire can cause substantial damage to your business, it doesn’t have to mean the end of your business. Below we will cover the steps to take after a fire to your business. These steps will help to ensure there is no more damage to your business and to get it back up and running as quickly as possible.

Turn Off Power, Gas, and Water

It’s always a good idea to play it safe and turn off your electricity, gas, and water after a fire. None of those mix well with fire and it’s always best to shut them all off at the meters if possible. Once your property has been inspected for any damages to electrical, gas and water lines and they are intact, you can turn them back on. If there is damage to any of them, you’ll want to get them repaired before turning back on the utilities.

Contact Your Insurance Company

An obvious but still important step is to contact your insurance company as soon as possible. They can get any claims started so there are no delays. They’ll probably request lots of paperwork and receipts of inventory. They’ll also most likely need documentation of repairs and any other costs from the fire. It’s a good idea to keep track of all contacts, receipts, paperwork and other documentation going forward in case your insurance company or other parties request any documentation.

Secure Your Business & Property

Fire damaged properties are attractive to vandals and burglars as they are usually unsecured and easy to access. It’s important to make sure any windows or doors or openings are boarded up and secured. You also want to notify your local police after a fire, so they can keep an eye on your property during the repair and restoration process. In some cases, you may need to hire a security company to guard your property 24/7 during the restoration process depending on the extent of the damage.

Call the Fire Damage Restoration Pros

Businesses that suffer major fires will also usually suffer from water damage also. This can be from the firefighters or from the fire sprinkler system. It’s important to have water damage and fire damage restoration pros, like those at SERVPRO of Gainesville, at your business as soon as possible. Once the fire is out and your business is safe to enter, the pros at SERVPRO of Gainesville can be on the scene and remove the water, drying the floors and walls, and treat the damage quickly to ensure more damage does not happen. If you wait, the water damage can lead to even more damage from mold. It can also permeate further into the walls and floors leading to further water damage in your business. SERVPRO of Gainesville is ready 24/7 to handle whatever emergency comes its way. Contact us immediately if your business or home should suffer a fire 770-536-1010.

Freezing Rain

11/30/2021 (Permalink)

If you haven’t had freezing temperatures you can expect to soon, so we thought we would give you some tips about freezing rain. According to the National Severe Storms Laboratory freezing rain occurs when snowflakes descend into a warmer layer of air and melt completely & because they are “supercooled,” they instantly refreeze upon contact with anything that that is at or below 0 degrees C, creating a glaze of ice on the ground, trees, power lines, or other objects. A significant accumulation of freezing rain lasting several hours or more is called an ice storm.

  1. Stay off the road.
  2. Be prepared for power outages.
  3. Treat your driveways and roads before the freezing rain comes
  4. Be aware of black ice: Since black ice is highly transparent, it is unlikely you'll be able to see it while driving down the road. Roadways become very slippery when black ice forms, leading to hazardous driving conditions and an increased risk of car accidents.

We hope you have safe holidays during this winter season but if your home or business experiences storm damage we’re here to help. We are a part of a national SERVPRO storm team whose members respond to disasters nationwide. From hurricanes to wildfires, SERVPRO storm teams are always prepared to respond to major catastrophic events. SERVPRO's large-loss response is uniquely qualified to handle any disaster. We are prequalified, experienced, and strategically located across The United States to respond to any loss. When an event comes to devastate a community, in Gainesville or Hall County, we are proud to operate in your neighborhood.

Halloween Fire Prevention

10/21/2021 (Permalink)

Don’t Make Halloween Scarier than it should be

October is here. That means Halloween is close at hand. It is a great time for families and friends to gather, carve pumpkins and eat a lot of candy. But, there are a few safety tips you need to follow during this time of year. Because, Halloween can be fun & scary, but really scary if you do not follow simple Fire Safety tips.

Make Halloween safe for your little monsters!

Here are five simple Halloween Fire Safety tips:

1.) Use a battery-operated candle or glow-stick in your jack-o-lanterns, instead of regular candles.

2.) When choosing costumes, stay away from long trailing flammable fabrics.

3.) Dried flowers, cornstalks, crepe paper and plastic can catch fire easily. Keep all of your decorations away from heat sources, including candles, light-bulbs and heaters.

4.) Teach children to stay far away from open flames, including candles in jack-o-lanterns, bonfires and tiki-torches.

5.) Remember to always keep decorations away from every exit, to not block escape routes. And make sure all smoke alarms in the home are working properly.

Following these simple but effective Fire Safety Tips will help ensure that your little monsters have a safe, fun and memorable Halloween.

Water damage timeline

10/21/2021 (Permalink)

Did You Know There is a Water Damage Timeline?

Intrusion of water into your home from a storm can result in mold growth. When water damages are not addressed right away, the result is an increased risk of mold growth. Mold may appear within 24 to 48 hours after a water damage intrusion event if the conditions are conducive to mold growth.

SERVPRO of Gainesville, handles water damages every day, and we know prompt action is required to prevent mold growth. By utilizing the proper equipment and moisture measuring devices, your home or business building will be quickly and thoroughly dried to industry standards, which help prevent the secondary damage like mold growth. 

Water Damage Timeline

Within Minutes:

  • Water quickly spreads throughout your property, saturating everything in its path.
  • Water is absorbed into walls, floors, upholstery, and belongings.
  • Furniture finishes may begin to bleed, causing permanent staining on carpets.
  • Photographs, books, and other paper goods start to swell and warp.

Hours 1-24:

  • Drywall begins to swell and break down.
  • Metal surfaces begin to tarnish.
  • Furniture begins to swell and crack.
  • Dyes and inks from cloth and paper goods spread and stain.
  • A musty odor appears. Mold spores grow if conditions are conducive to microbial growth.

Before risking further damage to you home, and belongings do not try to clean a water damage incident on your own, instead call SERVPRO of Gainesville at 770-536-1010 to handle the water damage cleanup and restoration. They will make it "Like it never even happened."

Four benefits of hiring a professional service

10/21/2021 (Permalink)

The 4 Benefits of Hiring a Professional Service 

Residential and commercial water damage can be one of the most costly and challenging problems faced by those who own a property. From leaky toilets to general plumbing problems, there are a number of causes for flooding that often occurs. Although it may seem easy to clean and repair yourself, there are a few benefits to hiring a professional service to handle the task.

  1. Prevent Mold Spores From Spreading

A water damage professional is skilled and trained to properly clean areas where water has leaked in between walls, under floorboards, and in places that are hard to reach. This can help salvage areas that would need to be replaced if proper cleaning didn't take place immediately. In locations where mold has developed, the professional can properly clean it with the right tools and prevent the spores from spreading.

  1. Avoid Further Damage

For those who are inexperienced with cleaning or restoring areas where the water damage has occurred, it can be easy to make the problem worse and allow it to escalate if it's not remedied immediately. Professionals will be able to visit the property right after the Palm Bay mold damage has occurred to prevent further problems from developing.

  1. Identify Hidden Signs of Moisture

A water damage professional will be able to use sophisticated moisture tools to identify hidden signs of moisture that are often undetectable to homeowners. They can also take specific steps to prevent water damage from occurring again in the future.

  1. Quality Restoration Services

Water damage professionals will be able to restore and replace insulation or flooring for a final product that looks incredible with the highest quality of materials used.

Become a member of our team

10/20/2021 (Permalink)

Do you love helping people through difficult situations?

Then, don’t miss your chance to join our Franchise as a new Production Crew Chief. In this position, you will be making a difference each and every day. We have a real drive toward the goal of helping make fire and water damage “Like it never even happened.”

Our Franchise is seeking someone comfortable working hard in challenging situations, enjoys meeting new people, has excellent communication skills, enjoys supervising others, and is a serious multi-tasker. If you are self-motivated and have superb interpersonal skills, then you’ll thrive in this work environment. Are you highly dependable and super-excited about routinely exceeding expectations? Then you may be our perfect hero!

As a valued SERVPRO® Franchise employee, you will receive a competitive pay rate, with the opportunity to learn and grow.

Primary Responsibilities

  • Explain the process and answer customer questions, as needed.
  • Monitor, communicate and respond to customer needs/concerns.
  • Communicate clear expectations to Production Technicians and supervise their activities.
  • Perform production processes as scheduled and ensure quality control.
  • Identify safety hazards, communicate, and establish control measures to ensure the safety of occupants and workers.
  • Manage job file documentation to ensure complete and accurate project details.
  • Cleaning and documentation of equipment and materials properly.

Position Requirements

  • Effective written and oral communication
  • Basic math skills
  • Experience in cleaning/restoration preferred
  • After hours availability
  • On-call availability
  • High school diploma/GED
  • IICRC certifications preferred but not required
  • Ability to lift a minimum of 50 pounds regularly, occasionally up to 100 pounds with assistance
  • Ability to climb ladders, work at ceiling heights, work in tight spaces (e.g., crawls spaces, attics)
  • Ability to sit/stand/walk for prolonged periods of time
  • Ability to repetitively push/pull/lift/carry objects
  • Ability to work with/around cleaning products/chemicals
  • Ability to travel locally when necessary

How to dry cavities after water damage

10/20/2021 (Permalink)

How does water get into wall cavities?

Wall cavities can be particularly susceptible to long-term damage in your Gainesville home. Once water enters an enclosure like a wall cavity, it can take a long time to dry or lead to secondary injuries like mold growth. These issues can occur through plumbing issues or structural issues. Sometimes humid outdoor air can condensate within cavities leading to a water damage issue. These issues are typically identifiable by discoloration in paint or visible signs of cracking on interior walls. SERVPRO applied structural drying (ASD) technicians can help to remedy wall cavity issues in your home.

What equipment is useful for dealing with cavity damages?

General construction equipment to gain access to the cavity.

Adapted air-moving equipment to dry out a cavity.

Specialist systems like injectidry equipment.

Is it possible to ventilate a wall cavity?

Many different equipment types can help cavity water damage restoration in your Gainesville home. Drying and ventilating equipment usually feature vents attached to air-movers or flex-hoses that are attached to a blower. This equipment is generally applied by drilling discrete holes beneath the baseboard of a wall. From here, the equipment can circulate dry air into the cavity to dry it effectively. SERVPRO technicians can use multiple air-movement equipment to tackle cavity damages in your home.

What are the critical aspects of using air-movers?

Ensure that the vents for air-movers are clear without any blockages to prevent overheating and equipment damage.

Control electrical hazards by using Ground Flow Circuit Interrupters (GFCI), which can prevent hydro electric malfunction.

Check air-mover motors are thermally protected with three-prong plugs before using.

Restoring wall cavities can be a time-consuming task without specialized equipment. Contact SERVPRO of Gainesville at 770-536-1010.

Your commercial disaster experts

10/20/2021 (Permalink)

Commercial Water Damage

Water damage can happen in many ways. Heavy rain, sprinkler line break, or there could be an overflowing toilet that causes damage in a structure. A frozen pipe could burst and cause extensive damage in the wintertime. A burst pipe or a leaking roof in a manufacturing plant can shut down the production line causing huge losses. Our goal is to minimize downtime and to get your business back up and running at full speed. 

Commercial Fire Damage

A fire in your commercial building can result in extensive damage. Even small contained fires that are isolated and extinguished quickly can cause extensive damage. It's the smoke that travels seemingly everywhere that is the culprit and causes most damage after a fire. Smoke can get into the ductwork and quickly spread throughout the building. With fire and smoke damage, it's essential to hire fire restoration professionals that can quickly restore your business, warehouse, or retail space. 

Call A Large Loss Specialist

When any of these events happen, it's essential to call restoration professionals immediately to mitigate the damage. When hiring a commercial restoration and cleanup company, it's vital to make sure they have the expertise and equipment to handle large scale jobs. Our location has the experience to handle any size job, from a two-story to a twenty-two story high-rise. 

Whether it's a fire, flood or, storm damage SERVPRO of Gainesville has the experience, equipment, to make it "Like it never even happened." If you have a small retail store, warehouse or, a multi-building complex, call the commercial restoration experts at SERVPRO of Gainesville at 770-536-1010.

Do your employees know how to use a fire extinguisher?

10/8/2021 (Permalink)

Do you have a fire extinguisher in your business?  Have you asked your employees if they know the correct way to use the extinguisher?  A fire extinguisher is one of the most essential pieces of life-saving equipment in your commercial property.  While your fire suppression system is excellent for your overall facility, and alarms will ensure the safe evacuation of your employees or tenants, extinguishers provide a direct line of defense and allow for immediate response to manageable fires.  With this being said, there is a four-step process known as the P.A.S.S. technique.  Let's take a look at them all;

  1. Pull- The first step is to pull the pin form the extinguisher handle.  This will allow the handle to be fully compressed.
  2. Aim- Aim the flexible rubber hose attached to the nozzle and extend away from the handle toward the fire.
  3. Squeeze- Squeezing the handle will release the extinguishing agent. The mixture will come out quickly and somewhat powerfully, so be prepared and keep firm aim on the blaze.
  4. Sweep- Focus on extinguishing the mixture at the base of the fire, you will want to use a sweeping motion. After the fire is out, watch the area and ensure that there are no remaining embers.

Keep everyone in your work place safe with the knowledge of proper procedure of fire extinguishers.  If you have any questions regarding the proper technique, you can contact your local fire department for guided help.

Odor control after a fire

10/8/2021 (Permalink)

After a fire, your home will need some serious smoke cleaning to repair the damage With a smell that intense, simply opening up the windows isn’t going to suffice. Professional odor remediation specialists in Gainesville, GA can eliminate smoke odor in your home through the use of special techniques and equipment. Here are three examples of these techniques.

1. Air Filtration Devices

The most basic machine the professionals use is an industrial-strength version of the air purifiers you can buy at the store. An air filtration device with an activated carbon filter works by trapping odor molecules in the filter as the air flows through it. When these gases cannot escape, they deteriorate rapidly. The odor in the room is eventually neutralized.

2. Thermal Foggers

Thermal foggers use heat and deodorizing chemicals for the smoke cleaning process. They simulate the conditions that were present in the fire (i.e., heat and air pressure). Porous surfaces react to these conditions and absorb the deodorizers, just like they absorbed the smoke odor during the fire.

3. Ozone Machines

A third method for eliminating the smell of smoke in your home in Gainesville, GA, after a fire is through the use of ozone machines. Think of how the air smells outside right after it rains. The ozone machine mimics what nature does to purify the outside air. It produces molecules of ozone, also known as activated oxygen. The extra atom of oxygen in ozone attaches to smoke particulates and breaks them down. After a while, the air smells fresh and clean because everything that was making it stink has been neutralized.

Smoke cleaning after a house fire involves more than just removing soot or smoke damage from the home or creating extra air flow. When you hire experts for odor remediation, they use equipment that actually eliminates the source of the smell so that it does not return. For more information, call SERVPRO of Gainesville 770-536-1010.

Are you ready?

10/8/2021 (Permalink)

Are you prepared for flood damage? What do you do in the event of a storm? What about tornadoes, are you and your employees ready? What happens in the event that your commercial structure has a fire?  How prepared is your company for emergencies?

Prepared for whatever is thrown your way? Are you Prepared, at all? SERVPRO® of Gainesville  can make sure your company is prepared at all times with  an Emergency Ready Profile (ERP).. 

What is an Emergency Ready Profile? A tool that property managers and owners -- both residential and commercial can use to be prepared for whatever happens .By developing a SERVPRO® Emergency READY Profile for your home or business, your company minimize  interruptions by having an immediate plan of action. Helping you and your employees know what to do and what to expect in advance.  Knowledge and timing are the key to mitigation and restoration.

Help ensure your business is prepared for National Preparedness Month, every other month before and after. In addition, an ERP can help minimize how water and fire damage can affect your residential or commercial properties. With and ERP in place, you can be prepared year-round.


How prepared is your commercial structure? Do not wait for disasters to happen, hoping that you are ready.   The marketing team at SERVPRO® of Gainesville will help to ensure your business is well-prepared. Call 770-536-1010.

What does restoration after storm damage look like?

10/1/2021 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Restoration

If your Gainesville, GA, home has been damaged during a severe storm, you are probably wondering what your home will look like after the restoration process is complete. Obviously, the extent of necessary repairs will depend on your specific situation. A professional will likely help you to remove water, tear out wet materials, and dry any affected areas. This may result in relatively localized changes to your home or systemic ones, so you should understand what you are in for.

  1. Extracting Excess Water
    Removing water from low areas of your home can be deceptively difficult. As little as one or two inches of floodwater can result in many trips to empty wet vacuum canisters. Removing water is the most critical step in storm restoration, as doing so quickly can mean the difference between little long-term damage to your home and extensive secondary damage.
  2. Tearing Out Wet Materials
    Materials that have been dampened by floodwater are at extreme risk for developing mold. Since mold can appear in as little as 24 to 48 hours, it is essential that you tear out any wet materials as soon as possible. Wet items in your home that are not structural should be removed, dried, and assessed carefully so that you can determine whether each is salvageable.
  3. Drying and Restoration
    Drying and dehumidifying your things is usually the final step in ensuring that your home will continue to be free from mold and water damage. At this stage, many homeowners simply want to be done with the restoration process. It is very important, however, that moisture is removed completely so that your home does not suffer further damage in the coming weeks and months.
    Restoring your home on your own can be difficult. A storm remediation professional can extract water, tear out materials, and dry your home according to best practices that will result in the least possible damage to your property.

The SERVPRO Story

10/1/2021 (Permalink)

"Ted and Doris Isaacson created SERVPRO in 1967 as a painting business in Sacramento, California. With a background in cleaning and restoration, Ted and Doris soon transformed the company into a franchisor of cleanup and restoration specialists.

After selling the first franchise in 1969, SERVPRO continued to grow, acquiring the Bristol-Myers Domesticare Division and its 175 franchises in 1979.

SERVPRO relocated its corporate headquarters from Sacramento to Gallatin, Tennessee, in 1988 to place itself within 600 miles of 50% of the U.S. population.

At the time of the relocation, the SERVPRO System consisted of 647 franchises.

The company's headquarters quickly became a key contributor in its community, and in 1991 the Nashville Business Journal named SERVPRO Industries, LLC, the Small Business of the Year. The company continued its impressive growth, selling the 1,000th Franchise in 2000. Learn more about our Awards and Recognition.

In 2005, SERVPRO Industries, LLC, moved to a new 140,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art facility in Gallatin to provide more room for expansion.

More than 1,700 franchises are operating nationwide, and SERVPRO continues to grow. The need for experienced, trained, and professional cleanup and restoration experts is recession resistant, and the growth potential inside of a proven system presents an opportunity for prospective franchisees.

With a proud history, a positive current growth, and a bright future, SERVPRO will press on toward becoming the premier cleaning and restoration company in the world."

Credit: https://www.SERVPRO.com/SERVPRO-story

How to clean up after sewer damage

10/1/2021 (Permalink)

Water damage in the home is bad enough. Sewer damage is an even bigger problem. Not only can the water ruin your belongings, but it can leave behind an unbearable odor. Also, sewer water can be lethal. Only professionals should handle sewer cleanup, but there are some important points you should know about to make this process successful.

Your Initial Responsibilities

As soon as you notice a sewer backup or other sewage problems in your home, you should contact your city's utility company immediately. If you notice black water, get family members out of the home immediately, and do the following:

  • Turn off the electricity to your home.
  • Remove valuables from harm's way if you can do so without touching the water.
  • Call a professional sewer cleanup company.

Safety First
A sewer cleanup is an emergency that you shouldn't take lightly. Within sewer water are contaminants including human waste. This water can be dangerous if you come in contact with it. If ingested, the water can be lethal. Do not let anyone in your household, including pets, get near the water.

What the Pros Will Do
Professional crews in Gainesville, GA, have the experience and skill to safely clean up your home and free it from sewage problems. Technicians have the right equipment to get into the water to remove it from your home. The company will thoroughly dry the area and sanitize it. This will keep mold from growing and spreading. The team can also deodorize your home to get rid of the unpleasant smell.


Never try sewer cleanup by yourself. This critical job is best left for knowledgeable experts. If you follow these guidelines, you can stay safe and get your home back into once piece as soon as possible.

Water damage during construction

9/30/2021 (Permalink)

Avoid Water Damage In The Middle Of Construction

Construction can be a long and expensive undertaking. The last thing anyone wants during construction is water damage from a broken pipe or the need for a water pipe repair in the middle of a building project. A flooded worksite leads to delays, hassle, more expense and probably extra paperwork. It is therefore important to take steps to prevent incidents that may result in water damage in the first place. Here are three important precautions that can help you avoid water damage in the middle of construction.

  1. Create a Waterproofing Checklist Before Construction
    Before the building has started, it may help to create a checklist of possible water hazards like unguarded openings where rain may leak through and enact preventative measures. This may include creating temporary roofs and coverings for open stairwells or elevators.
  2. Inspect the Site Before Leaving
    One action that can save you a lot of trouble after the exterior has been constructed and work has moved to the interior is performing a detailed inspection of the site and making sure everything is shut down before leaving. This may include:

    Making sure doors, hatches and windows are closed
    Making sure water is not running in bathrooms
    Making sure pump discharge hoses are connected

    3. Have the On-Site Manager Check the Pipe System
    A third precaution you can take is having a manager sign off on the pipe system before trying to use it. Running water through a pipe system with bad connections or other problems lead to having to shell out for both water pipe repair and a professional cleanup and restoration service in Gainesville, GA. Having water spouting out can also ruin exposed supplies, walls and flooring. So it is best to have the pipe system checked out by the on-site manager and verified as correctly put together before running water through it.

Having your construction site unexpectedly flooded can cause no end of trouble and bring work to a grinding halt. It is therefore best to prevent water damage before ever needing water pipe repair or restoration services.

Is your business ready for whatever happens?

9/30/2021 (Permalink)

As a business owner, you always strive to do everything in your will and power to protect your business, to protect your investment.  We are "Here to Help" you do just that and more.  SERVPRO of Gainesville will help keep your business safe with our easy and effective Emergency Ready Profile (ERP).  We make it our business to help protect your business.  Why SERVPRO?  Because we are your exclusive ERP partner.

An ERP is a tool for property managers and owners, both residential and commercial.  It allows for the creation of a Emergency READY Profile.  An ERP is a comprehensive document containing critical information regarding your business.  This includes information such as emergency contacts, shut-off valve locations and priority areas.  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 home or business.

Our team of professionals here at SERVPRO of Gainesville encourage you to always be prepared and always be "Ready for whatever happens."

Things you should throw away after a house fire

9/30/2021 (Permalink)

A house fire can leave a devastating effect on its unlucky victims, but the hardest part of recovery is deciding what to salvage and what to throw away. It is heartbreaking to let go of sentimental things, and trashing smoke damaged food feels like a waste of money. However, the health implications of eating food that was exposed to soot, smoke, and heat are higher than the cost of restocking a pantry and fridge.


Here is a list of things you should trash after a home fire:

  • Foodstuffs
  • Cosmetic products
  • Exposed medications

Perishable and Non-Perishable Food

All foods exposed to high heat, smoke and firefighting chemicals should be thrown away without exceptions. The last thing you want is to eat anything that survived the blaze and end up with food poisoning or something worse. The chemicals used to put out fires are bad enough, now add soot plus other contaminants, and you’ll get a lethal dose with every bite.

Cosmetics

Most cosmetics are a bunch of chemicals that change their composition when exposed to high heat, smoke, and other substances. Even if they don’t have any sign of burning on the packaging, the products can still cause skin irritation and hair damage. For that reason, throw away everything in the bathroom cabinet that survives the fire.

Medicines

The potency of your pills could be affected by high heat exposure. On top of that, the meds could be laced with firefighting chemicals, soot, and other toxins. As a rule of thumb, toss all medications away even if they don’t have any visible signs of fire damage.


As a homeowner in Gainesville, GA, never attempt to salvage things that could put your health at risk. It is better to throw away everything when in doubt. Alternatively, have a restoration company help with the sorting and recovery processes to avoid any long and short term health implications.

Advanced equipment and technology

9/29/2021 (Permalink)

At SERVPRO of Gainesville, we strive to provide our customers the best service using our latest, up-to-date equipment and technology. We understand the stress that comes with experiencing a water or fire damage and our goal is to alleviate that stress as quickly as possible. We always follow the practices and standards set by the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC).

When we report to a water damage at a home or business, the first step is to determine the extent of the damage, and the areas affected. Our advanced moisture meters allow us to detect water that cannot be seen behind the walls or under your flooring, and exactly how saturated it is. We use our infrared cameras for areas that are harder to detect with the meters.

Once we determine the affected areas, we will set up drying equipment. Our industrial dehumidifiers and high-speed air movers are typically used in a residential or small water loss. The dehumidifiers help remove the moisture from walls, ceilings, and floors. The air movers increase air circulation, improving the overall drying time by helping to evaporate moisture in the air quickly. For larger commercial water damages, we use our high-grade desiccants to complete the drying process more efficiently.

Water and fire damages have the potential to cause powerful odors. We use air scrubbers and deodorization agents to remove these odors and help control air quality. Our air scrubbers remove chemicals, contaminants and gasses from the air through a filtration process. Our deodorization agents control the odors helping to eliminate them from the air all together.

If you have a water or fire damage, call us at 770-536-1010 with our advanced equipment & expertise, we promise to make the damage feel “Like it never even happened.”

What are soot webs?

9/29/2021 (Permalink)

Fire brings with it many unexpected consequences. Of course, you will immediately see the toll it takes on your property and belongings when you are assessing the damage. While taking a look at your home or business, you may notice something unexpected. In the corners and along the ceiling lines of your home or business, you might observe something that looks like black spider webs. This phenomenon, commonly called “soot webs” has a more interesting origin than meets the eye. Read on to learn about what the true cause of these “cob webs.”

People think that soot webs occur after smoke has attached itself to pre-existing spider webs and turned dark as a result of the fire damage and resulting smoke. However, this is a misconception. Soot webs (also called soot tags) are new, unique chains of soot that gather in areas of low concentration. Air moves (or at least attempts to move) from hot areas to cold areas. As flames from a fire cause the temperature of the surrounding area to increase, the air tries to seek out cooler spaces to achieve atmospheric equilibrium. If the air is not circulating properly and cannot escape the structure, the smoke and soot will continue to travel around the enclosed air. Soot webs form in areas of lower circulation, which is why you typically see them up in high places and in corners.

SERVPRO of Gainesville is happy to help you clean up soot webs and all the other damage that a fire might have left behind in your home or business. Give us a call at (770)536-1010..

How to clean your valuables after a storm

9/29/2021 (Permalink)

Strategies You Can Try To Salvage Your Belongings

When you return to your home after a flood in Gainesville, GA, whether caused by nature or a broken pipe, the cleanup task can feel overwhelming. When there is water in the home, the amount of water and how long it was there will factor into your decisions about what you can salvage and what you'll need to discard. Fortunately, there are strategies that you can try to salvage your belongings, especially your valuable photos and documents.

Photos and Documents
The level of water damage will determine how you can dry your important photos and documents. The first attempt can always be to air dry them if the damage seems minimal. For more severely damaged documents, you can freeze your photos and documents in sealed plastic in a freezer free from frost until you can get a professional to help you with them.

Furniture
Depending on what the furniture is made of you may be able to salvage it. You can often save metal, plastic, and real wood even if there was a lot of water in the home. A method called dry cleaning is often a first step taken by water damage restoration specialists to remove light reside from surfaces and determine additional cleaning needs.

Food
Any food that was in your refrigerator or that was submerged in water needs to be thrown away. Canned goods that are commercially sealed may be salvaged if the label is removed, the can is sanitized, and it is relabeled.

Clothes
Clothing can be salvaged, but it will be an involved process. All clothing that has been in water needs to be pretreated before putting it in the washing machine. Once in the machine, use a heavy-duty detergent for a small load of laundry with a lot of water. Check for dirt and stains and wash again.


It is possible to save some of your belongings after damage from water in the home, but it's important to do so carefully and with the help of a professional to ensure that your belongings are safe and clean.

Use a trusted water restoration company

9/28/2021 (Permalink)

SERVPRO Technicians Are Highly Trusted Professionals Who Provide Timely Water Removal and Restoration for Gainesville and Hall County Homes.

When your Hall County home is unexpectedly invaded by water, it's hard to know who you can trust to respond quickly and professionally. SERVPRO uniformed professionals are highly trusted and extensively trained in water removal, cleanup, and damage mitigation.

How to Help Prevent Costly Water Damage Repairs

Not all water damage repairs in Hall County are caused by unexpected major events like flooding. Harm can be the result of a leaky roof, an old pipe, a broken water heater, or other issues. These problems can require expensive property repairs without appropriate water damage mitigation. These are the signs that you may look out for to protect your home:

  • Moldy or musty smells in your property
  • Dark spots on your ceiling or walls
  • The sound of dripping or running water
  • A sudden increase in your water bills
  • Puddles that return after you have mopped them up
  • Rust on metal surfaces

SERVPRO trained technicians in Gainesville have expert water removal training and techniques. Many of our professionals are certified by the IICRC (Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification.) They utilize advanced water detection, removal, and drying equipment to help mitigate water damage and prevent further costly repairs.

What to Look for in a Water Removal and Damage Mitigation Specialist

How do you know you can trust the water removal company you engage to handle your water damage problems?

  • Water removal and damage mitigation specialists should have extensive training and continuing education.
  • They should understand and use IICRC best practices.
  • Specialists should be available 24 hours for emergency services.
  • Water removal and mitigation professionals must provide timely and effective services.

SERVPRO professionals match all of these qualifications. If you find water damage in your home, act before it becomes an expensive repair. Call SERVPRO of Gainesville (770) 536-1010.

Roof maintenance for your business

9/28/2021 (Permalink)

When your business is located in Gainesville, GA, you probably know that a roof leak is no laughing matter. A roof is designed to protect your company from numerous types of inclement weather, including snow, ice and the blazing hot sun. However, a roof can do its job only if it’s kept in good repair. Here are a few tips you can use to help preserve your roof’s integrity.

1. Perform Regular Maintenance Checks

Many professionals recommend doing a roof maintenance check twice a year. However, if your business has an older roof or is located in an area where you experience frequent bad weather, you may desire to have a check performed more often. A maintenance check can allow you to find and repair any damage early before larger damage occurs.

2. Look for Signs of a Roof Problem

Maintenance should include looking for signs of rain, snow or wind damage, as well as cleaning out gutters and drains. You may also want to ensure that vents and other equipment are properly sealed and that previous repairs are still intact. If anything is amiss, then it's best to call a professional to conduct repairs before a major problem occurs. If you do experience a roof leak, then a water damage professional can advise you on the proper repair and cleanup procedures.

3. Do Repairs When Damage Occurs

Even wind damage can lead to leaks and other issues with your roof. It's a good idea to have any repairs made as soon as possible after a problem is detected. Having repairs made in a timely manner may save your business from a more costly roof replacement.

When you live and work in Gainesville, GA you know roof preservation is important. Performing regular maintenance checks and knowing what signs can indicate a problem may allow you to catch a roof leak before major damage occurs. If you do find a problem with your business's roof, it's a good idea to promptly contact a professional to perform any needed repairs.

5 Steps if you have a kitchen sink leak

9/28/2021 (Permalink)

Dealing with a leak under your kitchen sink can be a huge hassle, and it is important to handle the problem as soon as you discover it. A leak in your kitchen can lead to flooding and water damage, and knowing what to do when you spot one can help you prevent unnecessary damage and repair costs in Gainesville, Georgia.

Here Are 5 Steps To Follow If You Find a Kitchen Sink Leak

  1. Shut Off the Water
    If you have identified a leak under your sink, turn off the main water valve immediately to stop the leak and prevent any additional flooding from the pipes.

    2. Remove Excess Water
    It is important to remove any excess water in your home to prevent water damage and mold. You can remove water by mopping or blotting with a towel, but do not use a vacuum cleaner. Calling a professional cleanup service is recommended for major leaks.

    3. Remove Valuables
    Move any valuable items and non-waterproof belongings from your floor and transfer them to a safe place to avoid additional damage. Keep electronics turned off and remove them if they are at risk of coming into contact with any water.

    4. Call Your Insurance Provider
    Find out what your insurance policy will cover before you begin your kitchen repair. Homeowners' policies often cover losses from frozen or broken pipes, including the cost to repair the pipes and any personal belongings that are water-damaged beyond repair.

    5. Call a Professional
    A professional water cleanup and restoration services company will ensure that your kitchen leak is fixed quickly and properly. They have professional equipment to dry and dehumidify your home, clean and sanitize your space, and restore your kitchen to its pre-damaged condition.

    A leak under your kitchen sink can be a huge headache to deal with, and taking swift action is crucial to minimizing water damage and excess flooding. Shutting off the water, removing your valuables, and enlisting the help of professionals will ensure that you return your home to good operating condition as quickly as possible

What to expect from Mold Remediation

9/24/2021 (Permalink)

Whether it’s a slow leak or a sudden flood, water damage can cause mold to form in as little as 48 hours. Because a mold problem can quickly evolve from a minor nuisance into a potential hazard, it’s important to solve the problem as soon as possible. Mold remediation is the best way to eliminate a mold problem and restore a home to its normal state. 

Since no one likes surprises or unexpected disruptions, it helps to know what goes into the typical remediation process. Read on to learn what you can expect - and should demand - from a reputable mold remediation company.

Getting Things Ready

In most instances, you will have very little responsibility in the mold remediation process. That said, there are a few things you will need to take care of to streamline the process. Before any work can begin, there are a few things you will have to take care of: 

Start by fixing the water issue that led to the mold outbreak. Mold remediation is a big job and you don’t want to have to do it more than once. If you fail to adequately address the underlying cause of moisture in your home, another outbreak is likely if not inevitable. 

Prepare your home, so the remediation crew can easily move in and out. Clear furniture out of the way and remove cars from the garage and driveway. You should also keep pets out of the way, either locked in a room or out in the backyard where they will be safe and non-disruptive.

What to Expect

On the day of service, you can expect the remediation experts to park as close to the house as possible, so they easily move equipment in and out of the home. They will then lay plastic sheeting down and run hoses through the entryway all the way to the area affected by mold (in some cases, they may be able to access the impacted area through a crawl space).

The mold remediation workers will then suit up in protective gear, which will include white suits, respirators, booties and goggles. Don’t be alarmed by these protective measures. It doesn’t necessarily indicate that your mold is black mold; they do this on every job, whether the mold is toxic or non-toxic. 

Next, the remediation workers will spray the molded area with an EPA-approved biocide that will kill the living organism. This can take a while, so the team will generally leave for the day to let the biocide take effect.  

They will generally spray beyond the area to eliminate the chances of future mold growth. For instance, the entire attic will usually be sprayed even if the mold is only apparent in one spot. A thorough process is important to help ensure that mold is not allowed to get a new foothold after the remediation process is finished. 

Finally, the team will wrap things up by cleaning the air with a HEPA (High-Efficiency Particulate Air) scrubber and exchange that removes mold spores and discharges fresh, clean air. They will then use a HEPA vacuum to clean the floor and any other vacuumable surfaces to remove any lingering spores. 

Bear in mind that mold remediation usually includes disposal of all porous moldy building materials including drywall and insulation. Remediation experts will also attempt to clean and disinfect carpet and personal items if there’s a chance they can be saved.

Why You Should Act Fast

Because mold spreads very quickly, even minor mold infestation can rapidly escalate into a major problem requiring thousands of dollars in repair. At SERVPRO of Gainesville, we’re dedicated to responding immediately to your mold emergency. Our fast response times lessen the existing damage, limit further damage and reduce the overall cost or remediation.

Contact SERVPRO of Gainesville and we will quickly assess your mold damage, take steps to contain the mold, thoroughly filter the air, and remove and clean any affected materials.

Smart fire preparation tips for your business

9/24/2021 (Permalink)

Steps To Minimize The Risk Of Experiencing Fire In Your Workplace

As a business owner, you should know that good preparation can reduce a lot of fear and anxiety. This is the case in your daily business operations, strategies and production. You should also have a mindset of preparation when it comes to keeping your employees safe and your building free from damage. A disaster such as a fire could cause catastrophic harm to your building and the people who work there. Fortunately, there are steps you can take to minimize your risk of experiencing a fire in the workplace. You can also be ready to act in the event of this emergency with a contingency plan.

Know-How To Get Out
Even your most diligent preparation won't be able to prevent a fire in every situation all of the time. There is always a chance such a disaster could happen. If you can't stop a fire, you can at least ensure that everyone gets out unharmed while firefighters and professional cleanup technicians arrive on the scene. Creating an evacuation plan is vital. It should include:

  • Identifying all exits in every part of your building
  • Assigning key roles to responsible people in the organization
  • Designating a gathering place away from the building
  • Practicing the evacuation annually

Inspect the Electrical System and Other Hazards
Electrical problems are among the leading cause of fires. Poor wiring, defective appliances and failing breaker boxes can lead to fires in the office. Part of your contingency plan should include hiring a professional to inspect the electrical system. This inspection should include pointing out concerns and then repairing them promptly.

Check the Smoke Alarms
Every floor in the building should have working smoke alarms. You should test these monthly to ensure they are functioning properly. If the alarms are battery-powered, replace them each year. Every 10 years, replace the smoke alarms themselves.

Developing a contingency plan now can help prevent a catastrophe in the future. These three steps are vital for your business.

Be prepared when a storm hits your property

9/24/2021 (Permalink)

Severe Weather can happen at any time, anywhere. Being prepared to act quickly is very important when it comes to staying safe during a weather event. Below are tips to help you be prepared for a storm.

Know Your Risk

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

Take Action

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

Be an Example

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

Common Warning Signs of Mold

7/16/2021 (Permalink)

This blog post will go over some of the common warning signs of mold so that you can call SERVPRO of Gainesville to come help you with your mold problems (and the associated water damage, if applicable) as soon as you have a suspicion.

Condensation on windows. High levels of condensation on windows could indicate that your home has a high level of humidity. Mold growth thrives in high humidity, so it is likely that mold could be growing somewhere in your home if the humidity level is already this noticeably high.

Odor. An odd, musty smell often accompanies mold. This smell is similar to that of damp clothes that have been left overnight in a dryer after the cycle completed. If you persistently notice this smell in your home, you may want to have your home checked for mold growth.

Water problems. Water damage is the leading cause of mold growth in buildings, as water creates ripe conditions for mold growth. Whether you had just a leak or full fledge flooding, you should have your home checked for mold growth. Regularly check leaky pipes or areas outside your home that tend to pool standing water for signs of outdoor mold growth.

Discolored walls or wallpaper. Mold can grow between your walls and wallpaper. If you notice that your wallpaper is beginning to display odd colors (particularly orange, pink, or purple) you may want to have your home assessed for mold growth.

If you suspect that your home may have any mold growth, call SERVPRO of Gainesville. We can check your property for early signs of possible mold growth after water damage as well! 

Certified Restoration Companies Do the Job Right

7/16/2021 (Permalink)

One of the key characteristics of business owners and executives is self-reliance. Small business owners want to handle problems alone. Larger businesses have in-house maintenance crews to handle repairs and cleanups. This need to be self-reliant is ill-advised when dealing with a pipe burst cleanup. This is especially true when:

  • You are a small business owner.
  • You manage a larger privately-held or publicly-held company.
  • You expect your commercial insurer to pay for the cleanup.

Water Damage Cleanup Is Not for Amateurs

The problem with a broken pipe is not the water. In the case of a sewer line break, it’s not the sewage. It’s the mold that will establish a foothold in your building if given the opportunity. An out-of-control mold problem can:

  • Financially ruin a small business owner.
  • Harm employees and stockholders of larger companies.
  • Eliminate any possibility of insurance coverage.

IICRC-Certified Restoration Companies Eliminate the Risk of Mold

The most important task in a pipe burst cleanup is to remove the moisture. This doesn’t mean just mopping the puddles. This doesn’t mean just drying the easy-to-reach areas. It means eliminating all moisture from the entire damaged area. Most people do not have the skills and equipment to accomplish this task. Properly certified and equipped technicians do.

The Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration provides both training and certification services. Insurers depend on IICRC-certified technicians to:

  • Evaluate situations that call for restoration.
  • Recommend courses of action.
  • Follow those courses of action in restorations.

Certification is especially important when looking for a sewer cleanup company. With a sewer break, sanitization of the affected area is an important task. Properly certified technicians have the skills, equipment and experience to restore a healthy environment.


Fortunately, it is easy to find IICRC restoration specialists in the Gainesville, Hall County area. If you need a pipe burst cleanup and restoration, SERVPRO of Gainesville is only a phone call away.

Smoke Alarm Maintenance

7/16/2021 (Permalink)

Nowadays, most homes have a smoke detector installed. In fact, according to the National Fire Protection Association, 96% percent of homes have a smoke detector. Despite this statistic, the organization also reported that from 2009 to 2013, only smoke alarms only sounded in 53% of house fires reported to fire departments.

The truth is, homeowners and tenants need to do more than simply have smoke alarms installed—they need to maintain them on a regular basis. If you fall into the category of people who have never checked on their fire alarm—don’t fret. We’re going to cover the simple steps you can take to ensure your home is alerted during a fire.

Test Your Alarms Once a Month

Smoke detectors don’t last forever. In fact, you should have yours replaced every 10 years, which is the average lifespan. Even if it’s still within its life expectancy, you shouldn’t assume that it’s going to work when you need it.

That’s why experts advise that you test each of your alarms once a month.To test yours, look for a button the alarm (it’s often red, but yours may vary). Press and hold this button until it chirps. If the alarm doesn’t sound, that means it either needs to be replaced or have its batteries changed.

Replace Your Batteries Annually

Just as your alarms don’t last forever, neither do their batteries. Some smoke detectors will intermittently chirp when their batteries are low, but you still shouldn’t rely on this feature. Each year, replace the batteries in all of your alarms so you can rest assured they will function when needed. It might even be helpful to remember by timing it with a special holiday, such as New Years’ Day!

Responding to Fire Damages

While smoke detectors are crucial to help you and your family to a fire in a timely manner, they don’t prevent fires from actually happening. At SERVPRO of Gainesville, we have seen how devastating fires can be, and we know what it takes to clean them up. If you live in the Hall County area and need fire damage cleanup services, know that we’re available 24/7 by calling (770) 536-1010!

Three common questions about fire remediation

6/17/2021 (Permalink)

We've cleaned and restored homes and businesses in the Gainesville area for more than a decade. Over that time, we’ve helped hundreds of homes and business recover from fire damage. For many customers, this is a one-off experience they have never had to navigate. If this describes you, here are the answers to 3 of our most commonly asked questions.

  1. How long will the restoration process take? It’s hard to say exactly how long the fire damage restoration process will take. If the damage is relatively minor, it could take a few days; if the damage is more extensive, it could take months to make the necessary repairs. We understand how stressful this process can be, so we work quickly and provide updates along the way.
  1. What will happen to my belongings? When possible, our goal is to restore your damaged possessions. At our Lenoir office, we have an on-site textile cleaning facility, and we have access to several propriety cleaning products that can clean most items. If an item is beyond saving, we always discuss this with you before disposing of anything.
  1. Can you get rid of the smoke smell? The lingering odor after a fire is notoriously difficult to get rid of. Fortunately, yes, we do have a variety of products and processes we can use to remove the smell from your home. Our goal is to actually eliminate the odor as opposed to masking it or using other deceptive techniques.

At SERVPRO of Gainesville, GA, we aim to make any fire damage “Like it never even happened.” If your home or business has a fire, know that our team serves the Gainesville and Hall County communities 24/7!

Flood preparedness

6/17/2021 (Permalink)

Flooding is one of the most common widespread weather-related disasters in the United States. Whether your home or business is near a coastline, along city streets, in the mountains, near a river, or even in the desert, there is always the potential for flood damage. With this being such a prevalent occurrence across the country, it is good to know the following safety tips:

Stay Away from floodwaters

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

Driving on a Flooded Road

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

Keep Children Out of the Water

They are curious and often lack judgment about running water or contaminated water.

Always be prepared and ready. Even minor floods have the potential to cause major damage to a structure when not treated quickly and properly, and the cleanup is often an overwhelming task. SERVPRO of Jonesboro is prepared to handle any size disaster. The sooner work begins; the sooner your home or business can return “Like it never even happened.” Call SERVPRO of Gainesville, GA at (770) 536-1010.

When Water Damage Strikes

6/17/2021 (Permalink)

The first 24 hours following a water loss are the most important in preventing secondary or permanent damage. Within four hours of receiving a loss notification, SERVPRO of Gainesville will be on site to help ensure a water damage is handled by completing the following steps.

Inspection

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

Emergency Services

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

Monitoring

To help ensure your home or business and belongings are dried to appropriate industry standards, one of our SERVPRO professionals will monitor the drying process. The updates will be consistently communicated with you. We will certify to you and your insurance carrier that your structure is dry to preloss conditions to prevent secondary damage to your home or place of business.

10 Tips to Prevent Kitchen Fires

6/16/2021 (Permalink)

According to the National Fire Protection Association, cooking fires are not only the leading cause of home structure fires, the majority of kitchen fire injuries occur when victims try to fight the fire themselves.

  • Stay in the kitchen, don't leave food cooking on the stove unattended.
  • Watch your clothing, Long flowing sleeves,large-fitting shirts and even aprons can catch fire.
  • Be aware of items around the stovetop, move flammable items away from your stovetop.
  • Keep a fire extinguisher in or near your kitchen.
  • Change the batteries in your smoke detector, you need to make sure your smoke detector is operable.
  • Never throw hot grease in the garbage can, it can cause something in the garbage can to catch on fire.
  • Extinguish candles, be sure to extinguish candle flames as soon as you are done in the kitchen.
  • Be prepared to put out a fire, the best thing to do if you have a stovetop fire is to put a proper fitting lid over the pan or pot to smother the fire.
  • Have an escape plan, include a meeting place once everyone is out of the home.
  • Stop, Drop, and Roll, if in the event that you do catch on fire- Stop where you are, Drop to the ground, and Roll.

SERVPRO of Gainesville are here to help you in case you experience fire damage in your home. 770-536-1010.

Spring Cleaning Should Include Your Air Ducts

6/16/2021 (Permalink)

As spring allergy season approaches, you may hear companies make bold promises to improve your health by reducing allergens in your home. Such boasts may appeal especially to the nearly 25 million American adults and children with asthma and the approximately 50 million who have allergic rhinitis, or hay fever, because the symptoms of both can be triggered by dust mites, mold, and other allergens often found in air ducts and elsewhere in the home.  Allergies, according to the CDC, are the 6th leading cause of chronic illness in the U.S.

But should you believe the hype? Will air duct cleaning help you breathe more easily?

Common Allergy Triggers

1. Your Overactive Immune System
Many things can trigger an allergic reaction. It happens when your body's defenses attack something that's usually harmless, such as pollen, animal dander, or food. The reaction can range from mild and annoying to sudden and life-threatening. In the US, about 30% of all adults and 40% of children have allergies.

  1. Pollen
    It comes from plants such as grasses, trees, and weeds and can trigger hay fever or seasonal allergies. You might sneeze and have a runny or stuffy nose and itchy, watery eyes. Treat these with over-the-counter products, prescription drugs, and allergy shots. To help prevent symptoms, stay inside on windy days when pollen counts are high, close windows, and run the air conditioning.
  2. Animal Dander
    You love your pet, but if you're allergic, you react to proteins in his saliva or in his skin's oil glands. It might take 2 years for that to start. Luckily, you may still be able to live with him. Make your bedroom a pet-free zone, opt for bare floors and washable rugs instead of carpets, and bathe him regularly. A HEPA filter and allergy shots may help, too.
  3. Dust Mites
    These tiny bugs live in bedding, mattresses, upholstery, carpets, and curtains. They feed on dead skin cells from people and pets, as well as on pollen, bacteria, and fungi. They thrive in high humidity. To cut down on problems, use hypoallergenic pillows, cover mattresses, pillows, and box springs, and wash sheets weekly in hot water. Keep the house free of dust-collecting items such as stuffed animals, curtains, and carpet.
  4. Insect Stings
    These could cause swelling and redness that may last a week or more. You might feel sick to your stomach and tired and have a low fever. In rare cases, insect bites trigger a reaction that can be life-threatening, called anaphylaxis. If you're severely allergic, you'll need medicine called epinephrine right away. Your doctor may recommend allergy shots to prevent reactions.
  5. Mold
    It needs moisture to grow. You can find it in damp places such as basements or bathrooms, as well as in grass or mulch. Get air moving in moist areas of your home.
  6. Food
    Milk, shellfish, eggs, and nuts are among the most common foods that cause allergies. Others include wheat, soy, and fish. Within minutes of eating something you're allergic to, you could have trouble breathing and get hives, vomiting, diarrhea, and swelling around your mouth. If your reaction is severe, you will need emergency medical help. So call 911, and use your epinephrine pen if you were prescribed one. 
  7. Latex
    Found in some disposable gloves, condoms, and medical devices, latex can trigger a reaction ranging from itchy, red skin to anaphylaxis with trouble breathing. Symptoms can include a rash or hives, eye irritation, runny or itchy nose, sneezing, and wheezing. If you’re allergic, wear a medical alert bracelet and carry an epinephrine kit if you were prescribed one.
  8. Medication
    Penicillin, aspirin, and other drugs can cause hives, itchy eyes, stuffiness, and swelling in your face, mouth, and throat. If you're allergic to a drug, it's best to not take it. Your doctor can talk to you about other medicine options or treatments that may allow you to take a medicine if it's necessary.
  9. Cockroaches
    A protein in their droppings can be a trigger. Roaches can be tough to get rid of, especially in a warm climate or if you live in an apartment building where they can move back and forth between neighbors. Treat them with bug killer and keep a clean kitchen. Repair cracks and holes in floors, walls, and windows to keep them out of your home.

Physicians in the allergy and immunology fields often talk with their patients about their heating systems as he investigates the possible environmental triggers of their allergies. If patients live is a household that has forced air, this needs to be part of the conversation.

Heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems push air through ducts that run throughout your house in walls, ceilings, and floors. Mark Zarzeczny, who sits on the board of directors of the National Air Duct Cleaners Association (NADCA), calls ducts the "lungs of the home."

How can you tell whether your air ducts need attention? Visual clues, like signs of mold and excessive dust around the air vents, can point to a need for cleaning. But when there’s no evidence in plain view, ask yourself the following questions:

  • If your house is more than 10 years old, have your ducts ever been cleaned?
  • Does your house constantly collect dust no matter how much you clean it?
  • Do you notice allergy symptoms when you turn on your heating/cooling system?
  • Do you have asthma that’s not well controlled even though you’re taking your medicine?

Answering YES to any of these questions should encourage you to consider cleaning your ducts.

Time, Cost, and What to Avoid

The typical job on a 2,000-square-foot home will take about 3 to 5 hours and should be done every 3 to 5 years or if the signs described above return. Expect to pay at least $500 to $600.

“Anybody who offers to do a job for less than a few hundred dollars is not going to deliver to you what you need to have done,” says Zarzeczny, who chairs NADCA’s anti-fraud task force. “You don’t want a company that advertises at prices like $79.95 because they’re either going to be in and out in half an hour or they’re going to upsell you and walk out with $4,000.”

In fact, a rushed, inadequate job can do more harm than good. According the EPA, “an inadequate vacuum collection system can release more dust, dirt, and other contaminants than if you had left the ducts alone.”

Some Quick Tips to Help You Breathe Better Inside

  • Outside Air
    Most home heating and cooling systems simply recirculate the air that’s already in the house, including all the dust, dirt, and pollen. When the weather’s nice and pollen counts are low, open windows and doors to freshen things up. This is especially important if there are fumes from painting, cooking, kerosene heaters, or hobbies like woodworking.
  • Simple Cleaning Products
    Some cleaners have harsh chemicals that can cause breathing problems or trigger an allergy or asthma attack. Read labels carefully and stay away from ones that have volatile organic compounds (VOCs), fragrances, or flammable ingredients. You can make your own cleaners with plain soap and water, vinegar, or baking soda.
  • Houseplants
    These can be more than nice to look at, especially if your home is energy-efficient or not well-ventilated. In addition to getting rid of carbon dioxide and boosting oxygen levels, some can even help clear the air of chemical vapors. Of these, the easiest to grow and keep healthy include English ivy, ficus trees, peace lilies, and certain types of palms.
  • Your HVAC
    A dirty filter on your heating and air conditioning unit can keep air from flowing the way it should and lead to mold growth if it gets damp. Change it at least every 3 months and make sure it fits well. If you have asthma or allergies -- or you have pets or a large family -- you might want to check it once a month. It’s also a good idea for a professional to inspect the unit once a year.
  • Bathrooms
    If there’s mold in your house, the tiny spores can float into your nose and even your lungs. That can lead to allergy symptoms, like coughing or sneezing, or other breathing issues. The fungus loves damp areas, so keep bathrooms dry. Turn on a fan or open a window to help move air after you shower and hang up wet towels and washcloths. If you see mold in the tub or other areas, you may need to clean more often to help keep it at bay.
  • Air Fresheners
    Even pleasant smells can cause problems. Some air fresheners have VOCs in them that may bother your nose and throat. Other aerosol sprays, including some health and beauty products, have VOCs, too.
  • Fresh Fruits and Vegetables
    If you keep them too long, mold can grow on them. Check stored fruits and vegetables often, and toss anything that has mold or slime on it. To keep them fresh longer, don’t wash them before you store them -- do that just before you eat them. If you’re not sure if something is fresh, throw it away.
  • Cockroaches
    These bugs can cause problems even after they’re dead. When they die, their bodies break down into small bits, and those can get into the air. The same can happen with their poop. Those bits can get into sheets, pillows, and other fabrics, and may trigger asthma attacks or allergic reactions. If you know you have a roach problem, use roach baits instead of sprays. 
  • Leaks
    These can happen with sinks, toilets, showers, dishwashers, or refrigerators -- even your roof. Pooled water can lead to issues with mold and cockroaches, so any leak needs to be taken care of quickly. Call a plumber if you can’t find where it’s coming from or don’t know how to fix it.
  • Leftovers
    The only thing cockroaches like more than water is food. When dinner’s over, put anything that’s left in airtight containers. And if you throw food away, make sure it’s into a trash can that has a lid on it.
  • Pets
    Dander and other allergens that Fido and Fluffy bring in from outside can cause trouble for your lungs. As hard as it might be, it’s a good idea to keep them out of bedrooms and off beds. If that’s not an option, bathe them regularly and vacuum the areas where they spend time.  
  • Forgotten Areas
    Cabinet tops and vent hoods are a couple of places people sometimes forget to clean, along with behind toilets and under bathroom sinks. Wipe them down every so often with warm, soapy water. Give your pets’ dishes a daily wash, too, and check around for other areas that might collect grease, food, grime, or water.
  • Linens and Rugs
    Wash sheets, pillowcases, blankets, and area rugs once a week in 130-degree F water to help get rid of dust, mold, mites, and other things that can affect your breathing. And get rid of throw pillows that don’t have zip-off covers. They collect dust mites and pet dander and can be hard to clean.
  • Furniture
    Fabrics can trap dust, pollen, and other allergens. The next time you give the living room a new look, consider leather or vinyl furniture instead of cloth. If you have issues with allergies or asthma, you also might want to hang blinds instead of curtains, and dust them regularly.
  • Flooring
    Hard surfaces, like wood, don’t collect things that affect your breathing the way carpet can. If you need some soft areas, use throw rugs you can clean in a washing machine or sink. If you can’t take up your carpet, vacuum it weekly with a cleaner that has a HEPA or small-particle filter. When it needs to be professionally cleaned, be sure to use a certified “asthma & allergy friendly” service.

While we hope you never experience a disaster in your home, we do know we are ready to help you restore it in the event of one. Just give us a call any time  24/7 we are always here to help.

SERVPRO of Gainesville
Phone: (770) 536-1010

Three Common Causes of Commercial Disasters

6/16/2021 (Permalink)

Each year, dozens of Gainesville are business have some kind of disaster. Over the years, our team has helped hundreds of them clean and restore their properties, so we’ve seen first-hand how stressful and costly these incidents can be. Although we’re here when we’re needed, we don’t enjoy seeing our customers upset. So if you have a local business, make a note of some of the most common types of commercial disasters we’ve seen in our community.

  1. Breakroom fires. Commercial fires are relatively common. but in many cases, they originate in the breakroom. Generally, these incidents occur because small appliances malfunction or are misused, so it’s not a bad idea to review safety policies with your staff. You can mitigate any potential damages by having a fire extinguisher and a smoke alarm installed in the room.
  1. Mold infestations. Mold is unsightly, can cause health effects, and can damage your building’s structure and your belongings. While minor mold growth can be dealt with relatively easily, we’ve seen many situations where businesses have had larger infestations. Because mold needs moisture to grow, problems can generally be prevented by keeping indoor humidity in check and immediately taking care of water damage incidents.
  1. Sewage backups. Sewage is one of the last things you want to find in your business. Not only is it gross, but it’s also highly unsanitary and can pose health threats to you and your staff. In some cases, these types of incidents are out of your control, but if you have regular maintenance and review what can and cannot be flushed, you can lower your risk.

When you’re running a business, you have to prepare for all kinds of potential problems. The above are some of the most common, but there are plenty of other scenarios where you might need professional cleanup services. If you do have commercial damages, know that SERVPRO of Gainesville is available 24/7 to make any disaster look “Like it never even happened.”

Commercial Property Damage

5/27/2021 (Permalink)

Any damage that can affect a residential property can also affect your commercial building. Below are types of damage that can affect your business.

Types of Damage:

Water: This damage can be caused by a flood, burst of pipes, rain, or a number of other things. In any case, this can then result in contaminated water affecting surfaces and furniture. This type of damage can cause mold growth and items to be eroded. Electricity and water damage are volatile when combined.

Storm: Damage caused by strong winds, hail, and heavy rain which can remove roof tiles, break windows, and more. Storm damages can be very devastating and can cause your business to be put on hold.

Mold: Mold spreads quickly around properties as air-borne spores, and remediation is very important to prevent it from getting out of hand. This is highly unhygienic as well as being unappealing to look at. Even that small leak under your office’s bathroom sink can eventually cause mold growth.

Mold grows in any moist environment.

Fire: This type of damage can come from a gas stove, faulty outlet, lightning strikes, or a cigarette that isn’t properly put out. This can then cause severe destruction to your property which requires cleaning and restoration services.

If you have any questions or in need of services please don’t hesitate to call SERVPRO of Gainesville, GA at (770) 536-1010.

How to prevent bedroom fires

5/27/2021 (Permalink)

Did you know that half of all home fire deaths occur in bedrooms? That’s also where most electrical fires start too. However, you can easily prevent bedroom fires by following these essential safety tips:

  • Don’t run electric cords under the bed or carpeting. Don’t trap cords against a wall where heat can build up. Keep cords untangled to allow heat to dissipate. Never overload an extension cord.
  • Always supervise space heaters. Turn them off when leaving the bedroom or going to sleep.
  • Install arc fault circuit interrupters (AFCIs) to prevent fires in electrical switches. They shut off the circuit when an unintentional discharge of electricity occurs in the circuit.
  • Install tamper resistant receptacles (TRRs) in all rooms if you have children. These devices prevent them from inserting foreign objects like hairpins into the outlet.
  • Never put devices that are charging under bedding. Leaving a laptop on the bed can also cause a fire.
  • Only use laboratory-approved electric blankets and warmers. Don’t fold them as it may damage the wiring. Never sleep with an electric blanket turned on and regularly check it for overheating.
  • Keep flammable objects at least three feet away from heat sources, such as space heaters, candles, and electronics.
  • Keep lit candles away from combustible objects like bedding, curtains, and paper. Consider replacing burning candles with battery-operated flameless candles.
  • Use only mattresses that meet the 2007 Federal Mattress Standards.
  • Don’t smoke in bed — you might fall asleep with a lit cigarette in your hand and it could catch fire. Use fire-safe cigarettes as they extinguish more quickly.
  • Install smoke alarms inside and outside each bedroom. Test Smoke Alarms monthly and replace them every 10 years. Replace batteries once a year.
  • Create a fire escape plans. Make sure each room has two exits. Practice your home fire drill with everyone in the home at night and during the day twice a year.

For professional fire damage repair or smoke remediation services, contact SERVPRO of Gainesville today at 770-536-1010.

Storm Recovery

5/27/2021 (Permalink)

Steps To Take To Begin the Recovery Process

Natural disasters like hurricanes and tsunamis take a severe mental, physical, emotional, and economic toll on those with the misfortune of being in their pathway. The cost is often devastating, if not fatal, and recovery can be a lengthy and difficult process. Even those who escape personal injury often find themselves dealing with the fallout of damaged or destroyed property. If your home or other property in Gainesville, GA, has suffered damage from a natural disaster, there are certain steps you need to take to begin the recovery process, such as filing an insurance claim and dealing with a home adjuster.

  1. Contact Your Insurance Company
    One of your first actions in the wake of a disaster that causes property damage should be to contact your insurance company. Trying to get insurance claims approved can take a great deal of time, so it is important to file as soon as possible to get the process started.
  2. Prepare for a Visit From an Adjuster
    After getting in contact with an insurance agent, you should begin preparing for a visit with a home adjuster, who will determine the amount of damage done. Preparation includes activities like the following:
  • Locating and listing any damage
  • Documenting broken or lost items
  • Making copies of receipts for the adjuster
  • Contacting licensed contractors to obtain written cost estimations

The adjuster's report is a deciding factor in the settlement amount you receive, so it is important to be ready for the adjuster. Having your own cost estimates and damage lists ready to hand over also makes it more likely that the adjuster will not miss any important damage.

  1. Contact a Professional Restoration Service
    Another important post-disaster step you should take is to find a professional restoration company to help restore your damaged property. Professionals can help clean and refurbish your belongings, bringing them back to their original state, or as close to their pre-disaster state as possible.
    Recovering from a natural disaster is a difficult, often painful experience. It is important to take the right steps, like preparing for a home adjuster visit, from the beginning to ease the process.

Protect Your Basement From Storm Damage

3/9/2021 (Permalink)

Many homes in Hall County have basements, and they are highly susceptible to storm-induced flooding. If your home has a basement or was built partially below ground level, then you need to take extra precautions to keep your property dry and safe.

Why Do Basements Flood During a Storm?

During a storm, gravity pulls the rain to the lowest possible point. On properties that aren’t properly graded or have insufficient drainage, this can cause water to pool near or against your home. This is problematic because, by nature, basements are generally built partly or entirely below ground level. Given enough time, this excess water can seep into your basement, especially if there are cracks in the wall or foundation.

How You Can Prevent Your Basement from Flooding

While your basement is at a higher risk of flooding than any other part of your home, it doesn’t mean there’s nothing you can do. If you want to protect your basement, there are effectively 3 things you can do:

  1. Clean your gutters. Your home’s gutters are your first line of defense against flooding. As rain slides down your roof, it will get caught in the system and be directed away from your home, which will prevent it from pooling in one place.
  1. Have your yard properly graded. If your yard is flat or slopes towards your house, then you have a grading problem. The immediate area around your home should slope away so that gravity will pull water in that direction. If this is your problem, call a professional landscaper to grade your yard the right way.
  1. Fix weaknesses in your foundation. Water will find its way into any crack or crevice, so if your foundation has such a problem, it should be fixed immediately. Otherwise, you’re just inviting rain to enter!

What to Do if Your Basement Floods

Suppose you take the above measures and rain still manages to flood your basement. If so, there’s no need to panic: there are still some actions you can take. At this point, you’ll want to focus on mitigation, so here’s what you should do:

  1. Remove furniture and belongings to higher ground. Water can ruin possessions and encourage mold growth. If possible, your best response is to move as much of your furniture and other belongings upstairs as you can. This will at least keep these items safe.
  1. Redirect water away from the home. Your next step should be to remove as much of the incoming water as possible. The less water in your home, the less damage you’ll ultimately have.
  1. Call your local water damage restoration company. In most cases, you’re going to need professional help to extract water and dry affected materials. This is something you’ll want to do after the rain has stopped because companies like ourselves can’t truly help until the water stops coming in.

While you’re waiting for help to arrive, you should remain calm and focus on saving your belongings. If you live in the Gainesville, GA community, SERVPRO of Gainesville is available 24/7 to help you clean up flood damage and reclaim your basement.

Water Mitigation Process

3/9/2021 (Permalink)

Every situation is different and may require a unique solution. However, the general process is always the same!

Step 1: Emergency Contact

We are always available for you in the event of a water emergency. When you call in, no matter the day or time someone will return your call. The main goal during the initial contact is to understand what is going on so we can dispatch someone to your home or business as soon as possible.

Step 2: Inspection and Assess Damage

When we arrive on site our goal is to know what caused the damage if it is not apparent. This way we can have the issue addressed. The damage may require a third party to be involved (ie. plumber). Once we know what has caused the damage we can continue move on to the next step!

Step 3: Water Removal/ Water Extraction

A licensed technician will use specialized water extraction equipment to remove water from your home. Removal and extraction may result in removal of flooring depending on the type of water damage (ie. sewage back up). Our technicians will document and remove items that cannot be restored.

Step 4: Drying and Dehumidification

We will place machines in your home or business to ensure the space is dry and prevent the possible growth of mold. The average run time for drying machines is between 3-5 days. Of course, it may be more or less depending on the extent of the water damage to your property. It is important that you not unplug or move the equipment from where they were placed by the technician to ensure the space dries properly.

Step 5: Cleaning

Our technicians will clean the affected area and neighboring areas with anti-microbial cleaning products to prevent the possible growth of mold. We ensure we clean every crack and crevice!

Reasons to Trust SERVPRO with Remediation Services

3/9/2021 (Permalink)

There are many disasters that can befall your clients' commercial buildings. No matter what kind of damage occurs, professional remediation services are necessary to ensure that the building is restored properly. When you need a response that's Faster to Any Size Disaster, SERVPRO is the company you call.

Services Available

SERVPRO offers full restoration of the damages caused by a variety of problems:

  • Fire
  • Water
  • Storm
  • Mold

Whenever your clients have damage in their buildings, you need a company you can rely on to provide thorough mitigation. If you recommend a company that also offers restoration to them, the whole process can be tackled by the same team. This can save a lot of time and money.

Local Technicians
Another benefit of trusting SERVPRO with your clients' remediation needs is that no matter where the building is located, there is probably a local franchise within a reasonable distance. Once the call center receives the call that help is needed, it can contact the closest location to respond to your client quickly. With the number of service centers totaling over 1,700 nationwide, SERVPRO is well-equipped to be Faster to Any Size Disaster.

Information Updates
SERVPRO's Claims Information Center is your one-stop information hub for all details pertaining to the restoration progress on your clients' property. You can view the original estimate to check it against the insurance claim the client files. As restoration progresses, any changes that have to be made are reported on your clients' records. You get up-to-date reports that both you and your clients can access at any time.


When a disaster destroys all or part of your client's building in Gainesville, GA, you need a restoration service that can respond quickly and professionally. SERVPRO not only offers complete restoration from assessment to rebuilding but also mobilizes the local team as soon as you contact the company. SERVPRO provides services that are Faster to Any Size Disaster.

Ways to Prevent Water Damage in your Business

3/5/2021 (Permalink)

Many business owners focus on preventing fires, but what about water damage? It's much more likely for water damage to affect your business due to a broken or frozen pipe, natural disaster, or a roof leak. And when these damages happen, your business may need to close for a week or more for the needed cleanup and repairs.

Here, we will go over actions you can take to help prevent a water damage event in your commercial property.

  • Insulate water pipes. A major cause of flooding inside buildings during the winter is frozen or burst pipes. Pay special attention to exposed pipes, especially those in unheated or cooler areas of the building. Insulating any exposed pipes should decrease the likelihood of them freezing.
  • Have building gutters and drainage cleared. This should be done once a year to prevent clogged gutters. This is best done going from the fall into the winter to get out any fallen leaves or branches. When the gutters of your business clog, they can cause roof leaks, basement flooding, water seepage, or even ice dams on the roof.
  • Inspect the roof. Regularly inspect the roof, especially after heavy storms have come through to catch any signs of damage before they cause extensive issues. One small, unnoticed roof leak can cause extensive water damage in your business and cause mold growth across the building.
  • Know where the water shutoff valve is. Make sure a few employees that are regularly in the building are aware of the location and how to turn off the water as well. When you're dealing with a water leak from a toilet or water line, you'll want to turn off the water as soon as possible to mitigate damages.
  • Install a water sensor. Water sensors notify you when they detect a leak so that you can stop it as soon as possible.
  • Inspect for signs of plumbing issues. One of the major causes of water damage in businesses, you'll want to have your plumbing system regularly inspected for signs of old or corroded pipes. In some cases, your plumber may even find a hidden water leak in your business behind a wall or under the floor. If you ever notice your water bill suddenly increase, a water leak may be to blame.
  • Think about installing a sump pump. If you have areas susceptible to groundwater flooding, a sump pump can be a good investment to prevent flooding. Sump pumps work by pumping rising water levels away from the building and to a nearby drain.
  • Invest in good property insurance. Any business should have adequate insurance coverage in case of a disaster to help lessen the financial impact of the damages. Do research to find what insurance company is right for the needs of your business.

Why Be Proactive About Water Damage in Your Business?

It's simple: When you protect your business from water damage, you will be able to mitigate damages, keep your doors open, or reopen much faster after a flooding disaster. With so many different sources of water damage, proactively taking steps to prevent it is the best thing you can do.

When you don't handle water damage in a timely manner, or it goes unnoticed, mold or mildew will also begin to spread across your property, only making damages worse. The choice is clear: Prepare your business for water damage or pay the price when it happens to you.

Keeping your home safe from fire

3/5/2021 (Permalink)

Cooking is the number one cause of home fires. Here are some steps you can take to prevent a cooking fire. Each year from 2014-2016, fire departments in the United States responded to an estimated average of 188,800 cooking fires in residential buildings.

  • Remember to stay in the kitchen when you are frying, grilling or boiling food.
  • If you do have to step away from the kitchen, turn off the burner.
  • Keep things that can burn away from your cooking area.
  • Turn pot handles toward the back of the stove so they won’t get bumped.

If disaster does strike in your home, contact the SERVPRO of Gainesville today (770) 536-1010.

For more information about preventing cooking fires and other fire hazards in your home. Check out www.usfa.fema.gov

Emergency Kit

2/26/2021 (Permalink)

When you think about severe storms and how to be prepared for them, one of the most important tools to survive is to have a good Emergency Kit in your home. There are different options that you can buy online, but you can also build your own and accommodate it to your family-specific needs. Even though you can add unique items to yours, there are some things that are basic to any emergency kit and that we recommend that you should have when making your own, those are:

  • First-Aid Kit
  • Flashlight and extra batteries
  • Water
  • Non-perishable food 
  • Any medicine currently being taken
  • Matches and candles in a waterproof container.
  • Battery-powered radio and extra batteries
  • Extra change of clothes and shoes
  • Pet supplies (if you are taking care of an animal)
  • Sleeping bag or a blanket
  • Cellphone fully charged

These are just a few examples of what an emergency kit should contain. Residents can add whatever else they may need. There should be an emergency kit in every residential building as well as all commercial buildings if possible. Aside from having an emergency kit ready, a plan should also be in place. If there is a designated storm area inside the home or office, occupants should head there with the emergency kits. Severe storms cannot be avoided, but with the right tools and resources, they can be easier to deal with.

SERVPRO of Gainesville wants to make sure Gainesville, Hall County and the surrounding areas are prepared!

Understanding the Different Types of Water Damage

2/26/2021 (Permalink)

Water damage can wreck havoc on your Hall County home or business. That being said, not every flood is the same. Flood water is categorized by the types of contaminants present. Understanding the differences among the different types of contaminated water can help you remediate the damage more effectively.

  1. Clean Water Floods
    As their name implies, Category 1, or clean water floods, are categorized by an absence of contaminants. As the least dangerous types of floods, they typically originate from a supply line burst, a shower leak or some other type of clean water source. Just because these floods aren't as dangerous doesn't mean that they shouldn't still be taken seriously. A clean water flood can transform into a Category 2 flood if left untreated for too long.
  2. Gray Water Floods
    Gray water floods are also known as Category 2 floods. This flood contains mildly contaminated water, but nothing that could pose a biohazard risk. These floods are often caused when household appliances malfunction and flood, such as dishwashers and laundry machines. If left untreated for longer than 48 hours, a Category 2 flood will quickly become a dangerous Category 3 flood.
  3. Black Water Floods
    Category 3 floods, or black water floods, are the most dangerous of all. They are categorized by the presence of biohazards, such as human or animal fecal matter, raw sewage and dangerous chemicals or pesticides. You should never attempt to resolve a Category 3 flood by yourself, due to the possible health risks. Instead, you should contact water damage professionals as soon as you can. These floods are usually caused by toilet overflow, sewage back flow or a a flooding riverbank.
    All types of floods are capable of inflicting serious amounts of damage. That being said, it's still important for you to learn the differences between the various types of contaminated water make sure to contact flood remediation experts for assistance, no matter which type of flood you're currently dealing with.

Protect your furnace in the winter

2/26/2021 (Permalink)

Nobody likes being uncomfortable, especially when it’s 20 degrees and your furnace goes out. Then you have to make that painful call to your expensive repair man, who can only work on the furnace while you’re at home. Oh, let’s not forget those pesky Holiday or after hour fees they charge. So now you’re stuck in a freezing house in the middle of winter with no heat, which is not only uncomfortable, but can also be dangerous. Everyone says hindsight is 20/20, so here are a couple of tips you could have used to help prevent this unfortunate situation.

  • Keep An Eye On Your Furnace’s Air Filter

The air filter for the furnace is there for just that, to filter out the dirt, dust and debris from your home, and when this filter gets overused, it reduces the amount of air flowing into your system. In turn, this causes a negative impact on your system and starts to make it work harder, making it more vulnerable to those costly breakdowns and running up your energy bill. It’s always smart to change your furnace filter everyone to three months.

  • Make Sure You're Keeping Your HVAC System Free of Debris

As previously mentioned, dirt and debris can block airflow and can cause a system to shut down. So making sure the area around your furnace is clean and clear is a must. Also, occasionally checking your air vents to make sure they are open and unblocked by furniture that can impede the heat coming into rooms is a good habit to get into. Contact SERVPRO of Gainesville to schedule your HVAC system cleaning now.

  • Have Your HVAC System Maintained Regularly?

Having your HVAC system maintained by a professional who can spot and stop problems not only saves money by avoiding major issues, but also allows your system to run more efficiently ending up with lower energy bills. Ultimately, the visit of the maintenance visit will pay for itself through less money towards bills, fewer repairs and a longer lasting furnace.

What is an ERP?

2/25/2021 (Permalink)

Are you familiar with the SERVPRO Emergency READY Profile (ERP)? This tool can make one very important part of your facility management responsibilities easier.

Every facility manager knows they should have a detailed disaster plan, but coming up with one from scratch can be a time-consuming task. It’s tempting to put this job to the side and deal with the many metaphorical fires you have to deal with every day than prepare for a real, but hypothetical fire in the future.

That’s what’s great about the ERP. One of SERVPRO of Gainesville’s representatives can come to you and walk you through creating a reference document that details the important building and contact information for your property. 

The ERP can be used as a standalone document or as a supplement to any existing preparedness plan. Thinking through what to do and who to call in advance is the key to timely mitigation, which minimizes the effects of any weather-related disaster, water, or fire damage to your business.

No matter where you live and work, it is important to be informed and prepared for any disaster that may occur. Though Mother Nature's is often unpredictable, the ERP is one thing we can do to help you take control before disaster strikes.

Contact SERVPRO of Gainesville to establish an Emergency READY Profile (ERP) for your property. SERVPRO's ERP serves as a quick reference document, In any emergency, make sure you have experienced professionals on the line. No matter how big or small, SERVPRO of Gainesville will be ready to help make your property damage "Like it never even happened."

Avoid Candle Fires in Your Home

2/25/2021 (Permalink)

With warm light and pleasant fragrances, candles can be an easy way to create the atmosphere that you want in your Gainesville home. However, they can also become a safety hazard if they are not used properly. Candle fires are common, but the following tips can help you avoid them.

  1. Don’t Leave Burning Candles Unattended
    It may seem like an annoyance to extinguish a candle every time you leave the room. However, leaving it burning could result in a candle fire if something gets too close to the flame or if it burns too low. It is best to blow out candles before going to sleep as well, even if you are in the same room.
  2. Keep Them Away from Flammable Items
    When you are using a candle, you should be sure to have the area free of flammable objects. This can include papers as well as fabrics such as curtains and bedding. These types of items should be at least a foot away from any candles that are in use. Flammable liquids should be kept even further away.
  3. Keep Them Out of Reach of Pets and Children
    Both children and pets often come with an excess of energy and curiosity. For this reason, it can be easy for them to inadvertently start a candle fire. Keep burning candles in an area that is not within reach, and do not leave them unsupervised.
  4. Use an Alternative
    Perhaps the easiest way to prevent a fire is simply not to use candles at all. There are a variety of other ways that you can achieve a more relaxing home environment. If you are only interested in adding a nice scent to your home, a wax warmer is a great option. You can also buy battery-operated flameless candles that look and smell like the real thing.
    While these tips can help you prevent an emergency, accidents can still occur. Whether it is small or large, fires often require smoke cleanup and some repairs. If this happens, a fire damage remediation company can help return your home to its previous condition.

Storm Preparedness for Property Managers

1/26/2021 (Permalink)

Part of your plan needs to incorporate an emergency contact list

Storm Preparedness

As a property manager, you have a lot of responsibilities to tend to in the event of an approaching storm. While keeping your property and other personal possessions is important, your first priority is keeping your residents and employees safe. Storm preparedness is key to keeping your Gainesville, GA, property and residents safe during severe weather.

Plan Ahead of Time
You need to create an emergency weather plan before disaster strikes. Part of your plan needs to incorporate an emergency contact list that contains that following essential information:

  • Full names for all property residents
  • Number of residents in each apartment, including small children, special needs residents and the elderly
  • Contact information for each resident, including home, work and cell phone numbers
  • Number of pets residing in each apartment

Work with the remainder of your property management team to distribute the emergency storm preparedness plan to all of your residents. Practice this protocol regularly with your employees to help reduce unnecessary panic once disaster does strike. Make sure everyone knows where the designated weather shelters are located, if necessary. Resident safety is your top priority, so make sure to do plenty of head counts to ensure everyone is present and accounted for.

Rebuild After the Storm
After the storm passes, you need to fully inspect your property for signs of storm damage. Record full reports of any damage you find, including photographs, when necessary. Pass this report on to the property owner so they can properly file a storm insurance claim. Lastly, communicate any updates regarding storm damage to your residents. They need to be aware of any potential safety hazards caused by strong rains and winds.

Proper storm preparedness can make a huge difference when it comes to protecting both your physical property and your residents. Make sure to contact storm remediation experts for assistance following a tropical storm or hurricane.

My home has flooded! What now?

1/19/2021 (Permalink)

When your home is flooding, it’s imperative that you first stop the water. Water damage will only continue to get worse as long as the water or excessive moisture is in the area, so the cleanup process should begin as soon as possible. Start by:

  1. Being Safe
    A flooded house presents many dangers that need to be addressed before going into the affected area. If you can safely reach the breaker box, shut off the main circuit breaker. If appliances, electronics, or exposed wires are sitting in or near the water, an electrical current is traveling through the water. It can also contain dangerous contaminants such as sewage, chemicals, and debris. Wear proper safety gear to protect yourself as you go through the house, such as a mask, gloves, safety goggles, and rubber boots.
  2. Contacting the Insurance Company and Documenting Damage
    Call your insurance company so that the restoration process can begin as soon as possible. The insurance adjuster will have to assess the damage before any work is done. Before the adjuster arrives, take pictures of all the damage that you can safely access. It’s also good to have photos of your property before the damage occurs. 
  3. Eliminating Water
    Your insurance company will probably let you start the cleanup process before the adjuster arrives as long as you’ve documented the flooding well with photos. Begin by removing all standing water. A wet/dry vacuum is ideal for this job since it’s safe and removes water and small debris quickly.
  4. Separating Unsalvageable from Salvageable
    Determine what’s unsalvageable and discard it. Many porous items such as carpet, drywall, and some upholstered furniture probably won’t be salvageable. 
  5. Drying
    Open windows and doors to ventilate the area. Running fans and dehumidifiers and HVAC and/or portable heaters will help to dry the area. 


If your house has experienced water damage from any type of flooding in Gainesville, GA, you can count on flood damage experts. They’ll return your home to its preloss condition as quickly as possible.

Know you are getting the best!

1/19/2021 (Permalink)

It's natural to want your Hall County, Georgia home and business to be safe and as comfortable as possible. When any part of the building is compromised, it becomes a serious concern. Fire or water damage creates many issues that affect the structural integrity of your property. It's usually necessary to contact home remediation professionals who can arrive faster to any size disaster, fix the problem and return your home or business to its pre-damaged condition.

Recognize Professional Qualities

SERVPRO franchises are some of the most respected restoration companies in your community. There are several reasons for this:

  • Professional help is available all day, every day. Emergency services prevent further or secondary damages from occurring.
  • All specialists receive ongoing training, which gives them the skills necessary to respond appropriately to any type of damage.
  • Local franchises allow technicians to arrive faster to any size disaster. Local technicians can arrive more quickly than out-of-town competitors.
  • SERVPRO has more than 1,750 franchises positioned around the country, so it's very likely there's one in your area.
  • SERVPRO is often preferred by national and local insurance companies, which makes filing an insurance claim easier.

Whether it's your home or your business that's at risk, SERVPRO technicians have the equipment, training and location necessary to provide fast, thorough services.

Residential Services

Did you know that you don't have to wait for significant damage to occur before you contact professionals? For example, residential services are available when your home has been flooded due to heavy storms or when it has smoke damage from a chimney fire.

Commercial Services

SERVPRO technicians are also qualified to complete the work needed at your business facilities. When you need professional cleaning services or any type of restoration services for your commercial building, choose the best remediation professionals available.
Your Hall County property deserves full attention from restoration professionals. Choose SERVPRO of Gainesville for technicians who arrive faster to any size disaster and who don't leave until the work is complete.

Call us 24/7 at (770) 536-1010.

Getting the Right Fire Insurance

1/15/2021 (Permalink)

What the Policy Covers

Every policy is unique, but most will cover many different aspects of the fire restoration process. The following are some common expenses that are often covered by insurance:

  • smoke cleanup
  • repairing damage from the fire itself
  • repairing damage from the fire-suppression efforts
  • paying fire department fees

Most fire insurance policies do not cover arson. This means that you are not covered if the fire is intentionally started.

What Your Policy Needs
Insuring a commercial property can be tricky. Here are a few things to check for when buying fire coverage:

  • whether the policy covers the replacement cost
  • if the policy covers the full value of the property
  • whether the policy covers damage created by the fire-suppression efforts

Some fire policies insure property for its actual cash value at the time of the loss. This means you would only get the depreciated value of your property and not the replacement cost. Make sure you know which of these values your policy covers. It is also important to make sure you buy coverage for the full value of the property, so you do not have to make up the rest out of pocket. At the very least, make sure to insure the property for the minimum amount mandated by the policy itself. Have an experienced appraiser determine the value.


Additionally, make sure you know what types of damages are covered. Most policies will cover losses caused by fire extinguishers, fire hoses, and other fire-suppression efforts, but double-check your policy to make sure. Read the policy yourself and ask your agent if you have any questions.
If your business suffers fire damage, a fire insurance policy can help you financially. For help with the restoration process, a certified restoration company can help you get your business back to normal quickly and safely.

What to do after a Storm?

1/15/2021 (Permalink)

Storm damage can occur at any time and can cause an immense amount of harm to your home. Heavy rains can cause flooding and powerful winds can cause roof damage and downed trees on your property. Some post-storm damage can create safety and health hazards as well, so having a strategy to deal with damage will help you to be ready to take steps immediately after the storm.

Take Safety Precautions

Heavy winds and rain can create physical hazards such as collapsed roofing materials, window damage, collapsed walls or standing water in the basement or home interior. In addition, moisture can soak into furniture, carpeting, and building materials making the perfect environment for mold growth that can cause health effects. Shut off the main gas line if you smell gas. Beware of broken glass, exposed nails, and other sharp objects on the property. Contact SERVPRO of Gainesville at 770-536-1010 to help do basic tasks to secure your property and make it safe to use. If necessary, arrange for an alternative place for you and your family to live while your property is being restored to safe living condition.

Photograph the Damage

If it is safe to move around your property, use your cellphone or a camera to photograph the damage so that you will have a record for your insurance company. This action will ensure that you are fully compensated.

Contact Your Insurance Company

Contact your insurance agent to notify them about the damage to your home immediately. The company will send out an adjuster to determine the extent of the damage so that payment for repairs can be made.

Take the stress out of water damage

1/13/2021 (Permalink)

Green Servpro Duck Allow us to stress your small stuff

Allow us to stress your small stuff.

Damaged structures can lead to severe and complicated problems, especially if they are not treated promptly and professionally.

When your business or your home is ankle-deep in water, you don’t want to hear about problems. You want solutions.

Allow SERVPRO of Gainesville professionals to be your solution. With over 50 years of leadership in the cleaning and restoration business, SERVPRO can help get homes and businesses back in working order, helping to make it “Like it never even happened.”

Due to the potential risk associated with water-related damage, moisture and water should be handled by properly trained, equipped and experienced professionals to ensure complete and necessary drying. Proper and professional cleanup and restoration can help prevent future harm, extensive structural damage and possible contamination. So, the next time a water disaster strikes, whether it be your home or business, leave it to SERVPRO of Gainesville to handle it promptly and professionally. We have all the experience and equipment to make it “Like it never even happened.”

Happy New Year! Help your company make it a good year!

1/13/2021 (Permalink)

With each new year, many people resolve to better themselves or some part of their life. This year, make a resolution to be ready! 

Nobody ever plans on a disaster or a water or fire damage to strike, but you can prepare for it with the SERVPRO Emergency Ready Profile (ERP). The ERP is a comprehensive document containing critical information about your business, including emergency contacts, shut off valve locations, and priority areas. The ERP is a no cost assessment; all it requires is a little time, making it a great value that could save you time and money in the future. By downloading the free SERVPRO READY mobile app, this important information is stored electronically and can be accessed using your mobile device! 

Preparation is key to making it through any size disaster, whether it is a small water leak, a large fire, or an area flood. Don't wait until disaster strikes - resolve to be ready by contacting SERVPRO of Gainesville today! 770-536-1010.

Allow us to stress your small stuff

12/7/2020 (Permalink)

Damaged structures can lead to severe and complicated problems, especially if they are not treated promptly and professionally.

When your business or your home is ankle-deep in water, you don’t want to hear about problems. You want solutions.

Allow SERVPRO of Gainesville professionals to be your solution. With over 50 years of leadership in the cleaning and restoration business, SERVPRO can help get homes and businesses back in working order, helping to make it “Like it never even happened.”

Due to the potential risk associated with water-related damage, moisture and water should be handled by properly trained, equipped and experienced professionals to ensure complete and necessary drying. Proper and professional cleanup and restoration can help prevent future harm, extensive structural damage and possible contamination. So the next time a water disaster strikes, whether it be your home or business, leave it to SERVPRO of Gainesville to handle it promptly and professionally. We have all the experience and equipment to make it “Like it never even happened.”

Steps to prevent a lint fire

12/4/2020 (Permalink)

While the kitchen is the most common room for house fires, dryer fires are another common problem. The heating of the dryer combined with lint build up can cause your dryer to burst into flames. A lint fire is scary, but there are steps that can be taken to prevent it.

Safety First

It's important to realize that even when the lint is properly cleaned from your dryer, there is still a chance of a dryer fire. For this reason, you should never run your dryer:

  • When you are sleeping
  • When you are not home
  • When you are going to be outdoors

Leaving your dryer unattended can cause the fire to spread further, which can cause extensive damage. In addition, unplug your dryer before you start cleaning out the lint.

Vacuum Out the Lint Screen and Dryer

You probably already clean out your lint screen every time you start a new load. However, a lot of lint can get past the screen, and eventually lead to a lint fire. Take your vacuum attachment and clean underneath and around the lint screen the best you can. Refer to your owner's manual to see how to safely vacuum out the inside of your dryer.

Cleaning Out the Hose

Pull out any lint you can reach after removing the hose from the back of your dryer and the wall. If you can't reach it all, use a dryer vent snake to push it all the way through. In addition, check the pathway from the hole in the wall to the outside of your house. Use the snake to ensure that all of the lint is out of the vent.


These steps can help reduce your risk of a lint fire. You should do this at least once every six months, and more often if you do a lot of laundry. If you do experience a dryer fire, let your fire restoration experts do what needs to be done to clean up the mess.

Water Damage: Your Quick Reference Guide

12/4/2020 (Permalink)

Water damage in Gainesville is a serious property issue that homeowners should be fully aware of. By getting basic information about water damage and how to quickly eliminate it, you can help ensure that your residential property remains in excellent condition. To attain this basic information, refer to the quick reference guide found below:

Where Does Water Damage Come From?

Water damage is a hazard that can result from many sources. First, water damage can arise as a result of natural disasters like hurricanes, floods, tornadoes, fires, etc. Additionally, water damage can result from unattended roof leaks, broken water lines, and sewer backups. Additionally, water damage can result from flooding that generates rising waters which put your property underwater for several hours. In the event that the water contains any sewage, you and your loved ones will be exposed to several health hazards.

Structural and Property Damages

One of the property challenges that results from water damage is structural issues. When your ceilings, walls, and floors are exposed to water, the structure of your property can become weak. Additionally, water has the ability to damage several of the structural elements on your property. These damages can cost you thousands of dollars in repairs.

Mold Growth

According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), cleaning and drying your property within 24 to 48 hours of water damage is necessary for the prevention of mold growth. However, it's important to know that while you can start these processes to help eliminate or prevent mold, the fungus can grow in places you can't see. Some of these places include along ceilings and baseboards, underneath wallpaper, and behind the drywall.

Let SERVPRO Assist You Now!

If you find that your residential property has been exposed to water damage, time is of the essence. By contacting a trained team of water remediation specialists immediately, you can salvage goods, protect the structural integrity of your property, and preclude your loved ones from exposure to mold. The company to call for effective, expedient remediation services is SERVPRO. We have over 1700 franchises and more than 50 years of experience in this dynamic sector. Our IICRC-certified technicians work with unprecedented dedication and diligence to get your property back in incredible condition, so contact us immediately to get the detailed care you need and deserve!

Locally Owned Company with National Resources

As a locally owned and operated business, SERVPRO of Gainesville is strategically located to respond quickly to your flood and water emergency event. When water damage occurs in Gainesville, Georgia, we have the resources and personnel to help. Call us today! (770) 536-1010

Common Causes of Hotel Fires

12/2/2020 (Permalink)

As an investor in hospitality, a hotel fire must be one of your biggest fears. Guests run the risk of losing their lives if a fire breaks out at night, and you stand to lose a lot of money in missed business. For these reasons, you need to know how to prevent a fire at all costs.
Common causes of hotel fires in Gainesville, GA include:

  • Kitchen fire
  • Laundry equipment failure
  • Electrical malfunction
  • Careless smoking

Do Regular Assessments
The first step to fire prevention is identifying things that could cause a fire in the building. That includes doing regular maintenance on electrical fixtures, replacing any frayed wires in kitchen appliances and testing smoke detectors. Keep a clean record of every fire safety precaution so you can know what remains in the to-do list.

Appoint a Fire Warden
Having a fire warden with basic firefighting skills can save lives and property in the event of a hotel fire. This individual is responsible for formulating the fire escape routes and identifying the meeting point. He must also make sure every guest and staff member get to the meeting point in the event of a fire. However, you might need several wardens depending on the size of the resort.

Install Fire Alarms
Installing fire alarms in your hotel is a legal requirement, but you should also check the systems at least once a month and test manual call points every week. The detectors should include flashing lights to alert people with hearing impairment, and they should also be loud enough to wake sleeping guests. The recommended volume is 75db for alarms near the bed head.

Although insurance might cover fire restoration costs, getting back to regular business can be an uphill task. Nobody wants to sleep in a hotel that is associated with a fire. So, take these precautions seriously to secure your business.

Trust us after a storm

12/2/2020 (Permalink)

Storm Damage can happen at any time, anywhere. When you are dealing with storm and water damage, immediate action is crucial. You should choose the company with storm damage experience and expertise that has the resources and equipment to handle the job. SERVPRO of Gainesville can respond immediately to storm and flooding conditions.

Why choose us?

  • 24-Hour Emergency Service
  • Faster to Any Size Disaster
  • Highly Trained Water Restoration Technicians
  • A Trusted Leader in the Water Restoration Industry
  • Locally Owned and Operated

SERVPRO of Gainesville is locally owned and operated, so we’re already close by and ready to respond immediately when you need us. We make disaster "Like it never even happened." Give us a call today at (770) 536-1010.

Choosing a Restoration Company

11/20/2020 (Permalink)

The complications of a catastrophic property damage event are extensive and often impact a business’s livelihood.  After a disaster, almost half of all businesses never reopen as reported by FEMA.  It is essential for business owners to resume operations as quickly as possible and choosing the right restoration company will make all the difference.  Knowing what to ask is essential to ensure you are working with a reputable company—here are the questions we recommend:

How Do They Handle Emergency Response?

The faster damage is treated, generally, the less costly and time-consuming the restoration process will be.  Inquire about how companies handle emergency responses and what their operating hours are to ensure they are able to get to you quickly and efficiently.  At SERVPRO we have 24 hour service, 365 days per year and can mobilize immediately.  Your damage gets addressed quickly and allows you to focus on other important recovery tasks. 

How Do They Train Their Employees?

Quality restoration work comes from quality training, so it is important to ensure the technicians working on your property are qualified and well-trained within the field.  The Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) have established the guidelines and standards that are the best in the industry.  SERVPRO technicians hold certifications from the IICRC which also require continuing education and training allowing them to be industry leaders in restoration.

How Do They Pick Their Equipment?

Technological advancements have impacted the restoration industry heavily, and it is important for companies to keep their equipment updated.  A wide range of equipment is used in the restoration industry including extractors, dehumidifiers, air movers, air scrubbers, vacuums and deodorization machines.  SERVPRO equipment is chosen based on the IICRC standards along with extensive testing from equipment manufacturers.  All property damages are most effectively treated with the proper tools, which is why this is an important component of our restoration work.

Should you find yourself in need of restoration services in Hall County, contact SERVPRO of Gainesville, Georgia at (770) 536-1010.  At SERVPRO, we work to make it “Like it never even happened.”

Fire Do's and Don'ts

11/19/2020 (Permalink)

What To Do After a Fire

  • Limit movement in the home to prevent soot particles from being embedded into upholstery and carpets.
  • Keep hands clean so as not to further soil upholstery, walls and woodwork.
  • Place clean towels or old linens on rugs, upholstery and carpet traffic areas.
  • If electricity is off, empty freezer and refrigerator and prop doors open.
  • Clean and protect chrome with light coating of petroleum jelly or oil.
  • Wash houseplants on both sides of leaves.
  • Change HVAC filter.
  • Tape double layers of cheesecloth over air registers.

What NOT To Do After a Fire

  • Don't attempt to wash any walls or painted surfaces or shampoo carpet or upholstery without contacting us.
  • Don't attempt to clean any electrical appliances that may have been close to fire, heat or water without consulting an authorized repair service.
  • Don't use any canned or packaged food or beverages that may have been stored near the fire, heat or water.
  • Don't turn on ceiling fixtures if ceiling is wet. The wiring may be damaged.
  • Don't send garments to an ordinary dry cleaner. Improper cleaning may set smoke odor.

Who do I call first?

11/19/2020 (Permalink)

We've written blogs in the past, but it never hurts to have a reminder! We want to remind you that we're the number to call when your home or business is affected by flooding from storm damage. 

Go ahead and add us to your contact list as "SERVPRO of Gainesville." You can reach us at (770) 536-1010. 

Now... what do you do when your home has been affected?

First, you'll call your insurance agent. 

Second, be careful entering your home. Water damage can damage the structure of your home (sometimes beyond what the eyes can see) and we want to make sure that you are safe. 

Third, document everything. Take photos on your cell phone of everything that is going on.

Fourth, don't use any appliances in the affected areas. It helps to keep power turned off to those areas of your home until an inspection can be done to ensure it is safe first. 

Last but not least, give us a call and we'll be there to help!

SERVPRO of Gainesville is locally owned and operated, so we’re already close by and ready to respond immediately when you need us. We make disaster "Like it never even happened." Give us a call today at (770) 536-1010! 

Smoke and Fire Damage in Commercial Properties

11/13/2020 (Permalink)

Fire has a tremendous capacity for destruction and is one of the most widespread and common risks when it comes to commercial properties. As a result, most businesses have insurance coverage that includes protection against fire losses. When flames do break out, business owners contact professionals to respond to the fire and smoke damage. With the right equipment, these professionals help business owners get their properties back into working condition.

The Scope of Destruction

Experienced fire and smoke cleaning technicians understand that fire damage goes beyond the direct destruction. They take quick action to respond to several fire-related issues:

  • Stains left behind by soot resting on porous surfaces
  • Mold and mildew growth after the use of water to put out flames
  • Corrosion on metal surfaces exposed to water and oxygen
  • Poor air quality as smoke and mold particles hang in the air

The longer commercial properties sit after smoke damage occurs, the more likely it is that the extent and scope of the destruction will increase. The best response to fire and soot damage is to act as soon as possible.

Assessment of the Damage

As professionals arrive at a commercial property to respond, they'll assess the amount of fire, smoke, and water damage. As they begin their inspections, technicians also focused on safety. There are several safety risks inherent in the destruction left after a fire. Experienced fire damage cleanup and remediation professionals are certified and licensed to enter the property. In addition to training and authorization, they have the proper protective equipment to enter weakened structures.

The Cleanup Process

With safety procedures underway, cleanup and restoration professionals are ready to secure entry points and property breaches (such as broken windows and holes in the roof), establish security against further destruction, and begin removing debris. Technicians also remove as much equipment and inventory as possible. At this point, water removal and deep cleaning can begin.

The end goal of the cleanup work is to remove all evidence that a fire took place. When Hall County properties are affected by the fire and smoke damage, the work of professionals begins with safety and results in pristine buildings.

Protecting Your Property from Storm Water

11/13/2020 (Permalink)

Storm water runoff is rain that has not been soaked into the ground, so it flows over the ground until it finds somewhere to go. Ideally, the water would find a stream or river to flow into, but this is not always the case. Sometimes the water will flow straight into your house. Water damage is never fun and trying to get rid of water as well as clean up the rest of the mess a storm has left behind can be a real hassle. The best way to handle storm water runoff is to make sure it doesn’t happen to begin with. If you are up for a bit of landscaping, you can optimize your yard to keep storm water away from your building.

  • Swales: Simply put, a swale is just a type of trench meant to carry water and redirect it away from something important. If you decide to install swales in your yard, make sure they are redirecting somewhere that the water will not cause damage such as a stream or pond.
  • Rain Gardens: These gardens are designed with plants that are able to take up excess water to keep it from flowing freely. They also help filter the water so that the water that does reach ponds and rivers tends to be cleaner than water that has just flowed over driveways and roads.
  • Draining Driveways: Driveways are one of the largest contributors to storm water runoff. Installing drainage areas on the sides of the pavement or using gravel can help minimize the amount of water that becomes runoff.

Sometimes there is so much runoff that no matter what you do, your house may suffer from some water damage. If that is the case, call SERVPRO of Gainesville 770-536-1010.

Water damage can potentially leave noticeable odors

11/12/2020 (Permalink)

Do you know when to be worried about a funny smell? Most new homeowners are not water damage specialists, but the human nose is an excellent tool for sniffing out trouble. Your nose is not the only way to spot water damage in your new home. SERVPRO technicians are IICRC certified and can help handle any moisture problems you may discover after moving in.

The sooner you notice a problem, the sooner you can call us to help mitigate ongoing damages. When you notice a problem, a highly trained SERVPRO professional can assess the extent of your damages. We can use our specialized equipment to remedy the issue fast.

What should you keep an eye out for when you are looking for possible water damage? Start at the top. When looking for roof damages, obvious water stains aren't the only problem. Swollen insulation is usually an indication of water retention. Check your flashing (where the roof meets the walls) for cracks and look for missing shingles as well as more obvious signs like holes. Look at door frames and molding. Unusual stains or dark spots on the walls can mean trouble.

Inside, make sure you check your appliances after you move in to be certain they are not leaking where you cannot see easily behind them. Cracked hoses and loose connections can be tricky. Ripples, buckling, and changes in texture can tell you the flooring has a water problem. Remember to trust your nose. If it smells wrong, it probably is.

Outside water damages and mold are often caused by improper drainage. Check your spouts to see that they are clear and make sure you do not have water pooling around the foundation of your new home. At the first sign of damage, you can call SERVPRO.

Reach out to SERVPRO of Gainesville and give us a call at (770) 536-1010

Why Hall County Communities use SERVPRO

11/12/2020 (Permalink)

Why Hall County Communities use SERVPRO mitigation and remediation Services

The process of decontaminating and deodorizing a property is not a straightforward one. In our years of owning and operating a restoration company, we have seen countless examples of pre-existing restoration attempts that have covered damages with paintwork, carpeting or flooring, only for issues to keep recurring at the cost of the Gainesvillle and Hall County homeowners. In this industry, there are no short cuts. The job is either complete or incomplete- there is no in-between. Getting the property back to how is was before water, fire, mold, or storm damage requires dedication, expertise, and equipment. Our experience spans restoring individual rooms for private residents to entire tenement buildings for commercial clients, which has earned us the reputation of being "faster to any size disaster."

Mold

Microbial growth is frequently the result of an incomplete restoration or a pre-existing property issue. The situation that develops results in the signs, and musty smells that are consistent with mold damage in your Hall County residence. The causes can be quite varied, making them tough to anticipate. A slow leak in your internal plumbing or an incomplete flood restoration that results in residual moisture inside wall cavities. With the ideal food supply, moisture and relative humidity, microbes like fungi can proliferate, causing mold damage.

Our restoration services incorporate mold assessment and remediation. SERVPRO technicians complete the process from start to finish using the five principles of remediation set out by the Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC). The first principle is to ensure safety by Providing Personal Protective (PPE) equipment to technicians that prevent inhaling spores or microbes during the cleaning procedure. Recording conditions throughout remediation which can then be passed on to an independent indoor environmental specialist (IES) is principal two.

Once the first two criteria are fulfilled, SERVPRO can begin the remediation process of your Gainesville or Hall County property. Removing contamination may include demolition of drywall or other porous materials that have become severely infested with mold. During this procedure, mold spores can become airborne and spread. To combat this SERVPRO apply negative air pressure during demolition or cleaning to control cross-contamination. The final principle of remediating your Gainesville or Hall County home is to stop the source of moisture. Without repairing the source, mold can keep recurring again and again, resulting in endless frustration for the homeowner.

Water

Our company is built on a foundation of comprehensive restoration for water damage here in Gainesville. Unwanted moisture that enters dry areas of the home can be especially damaging to your contents. Even small quantities of water can do significant harm to sofas and upholstery. These harms can include joint swelling of wooden interior frames, which in turn causes cracking. Industrial glues can also be worn away by the presence of moisture resulting in rapid deterioration and permanent damages.

Restoration services for the contents of your Gainesville and Hall County home present several unique challenges for a SERVPRO technician. Dry clean fabrics may suffer from spotting, which requires the entire piece to be wetted to avoid water lines. Color bleeding is also an issue that can spread from a sofa onto carpets, flooring, or walls. These stains require immediate attention as clearing the stains is near impossible once materials are dry- foam cleaning can be an effective solution to bleeding fabrics.

Homeowners in Gainesville and Hall County want their contents restored to a preloss condition, so drying upholstery is as important, if not more important than cleaning cosmetic stains. Moisture residing inside furniture or upholstery can quickly become a microbial infestation. Since most furniture has porous materials, mold growth can result in having to dispose of the infested item. SERVPRO places dehumidification equipment around furniture and takes regular readings of internal moisture content to ensure furniture is restored both inside and out.

Storm

An adverse weather event can cause many problems to your property in Gainesville and Hall County. Even with appropriate safety guards in place, there are too many factors at play to control the outcome truly. SERVPRO is here to provide restoration services for storm damage in Gainesville and Hall County that cover a range of unpleasant issues including contaminated water problems, electrical hazards, and structural deficiencies in your home. Our rapid response units are available on-call for out of hours emergencies and can respond quickly by being local to the area.

One of the main concerns in a storm situation is flooding. Floodwaters carry highly infectious waste into your property, requiring restoration services for Bio-Hazardous materials. Waters may contain cholera, tetanus, typhoid, polio, hepatitis and many more water-borne pathogens that can be absorbed into your drywall, insulation, carpeting, and subfloor. As such, biohazard technicians must only enter the affected area with correct personal protective equipment (PPE) to ensure safety. You must also be prepared for disposal and replacement of structural contents in the affected areas of your Gainesville and Hall County home.

The human health threat of floodwaters means that the affected area must be thoroughly disinfected using environmental protection agency (EPA) registered cleaning agents. Solid wastes must be shoveled out before standing water can be drained using submersible gas-powered pumping equipment. Demolition of drywall, insulation, and other porous materials is necessary to containing infectious waste. Valuable fabrics may be rescued by mechanical cleaning methods such as our Esporta washing machines, but the affected area must be restored to a disinfected state before it can be returned to a preloss condition.

Fire

Knowing your enemy is an essential part of providing comprehensive restoration services. Residents with fire damage in Gainesville and Hall County can rely on us to understand the patterns of smoke deposits around the home and the appropriate methodology needed to remove them. This knowledge is valuable because it increases the efficiency of our service as well as ensuring the property is comprehensively cleaned. The two guiding principles of fire damage restoration technicians (FRT) are the temperature of the smoke and the temperature of the surfaces that come into contact with smoke.

Materials that burn at high temperatures increase the surrounding air pressure. From a restorer’s perspective, that increase in pressure can push smokes further into materials or wear away finish. Cooler surfaces take the brunt of hot smoke damages, so walls or ceilings likely need repainting. Structural posts, pillars or banisters with substantial smoke damage can be sanded down to remove surface charring and refinished. Only in the most extreme fires is there a need to replace large quantities of structure through remodeling.

Since hot smoke is attracted to cooler surfaces, you may often find that the more substantial damages are inside cabinets or draws- where the interior surfaces are cooler than the room. These areas are often the culprit when it comes to unpleasant, tough to remove odors. Your Gainesville and Hall County home can be cleaned inside and out to ensure that odors are removed at the source. Residual odors, which may last long after the event, can be controlled through deodorization pellets or ULV fogging.

Comprehensive restoration services are labor intensive and require a specialized skill set. Contact SERVPRO of Gainesville at (770) 536-1010 to arrange expert service.

When you have a fire at your business

11/11/2020 (Permalink)

When a fire strikes your commercial property, it's quite likely that you feel yourself start to panic. This immediate reaction makes sense given all of the economic turmoil and property destruction that a fire can cause. However, knowing which steps to take in the face of a Hall County commercial fire can help prevent you from becoming anxious, losing money, and undergoing extensive property damages. To handle a Hall County commercial fire successfully and speedily, implement the following four tips:


1. Contact A Fire Remediation Expert. 
Once the fire department has doused all of the flames, be sure to call a fire remediation expert. This individual will be able to equip you with a thorough assessment indicating the extent of the damages. Don't ever attempt to handle any of the cleanups, drying, or restoration processes on your own. Doing so could put you in peril of injury and illness.


2. Assemble Your Records. 
In addition to contacting a fire remediation expert, make sure that you assemble your business's essential records. You'll want to have this information with you when you start working with your insurance company. To guarantee that you can have all of your files ready in a safe place, make a point to buy a fireproof safe where they can be stored.


3. Call the Insurance Company Immediately. 
Be sure that you call your insurance company once the fire is put out. This step is important because your insurance agent will work with you to file a claim and determine how much coverage you'll attain for the commercial damages.


4. Get Permission to Reenter the Building. 
Always ask the fire department or another local authority whether you can reenter your building. In some cases, Hall County fires can weaken the structural integrity of the commercial property and make it subject to collapse. This is why you need to assure that reentry is safe for you and your employees.


Call SERVPRO For Fast, Friendly Fire Remediation Services 
If your business caught on fire, don't worry. Instead, call the professionals at SERVPRO of Gainesville and let us start cleaning up immediately. Acting right now is the key to limiting damages and expediting the restoration process. Choosing our team of industry specialists is the secret to attaining the sophisticated services you deserve. All of our IICRC-certified technicians will work with diligence and determination to get your commercial property back in pristine condition, so call us now at (770) 536-1010.

Stages and Categories of Hurricanes

11/11/2020 (Permalink)

As a storm builds from a thunderstorm to a hurricane, it passes through 4 distinct stages:

  1. Tropical Disturbance: a mass of thunderstorms that have wind speeds of less than 23 mph.
  2. Tropical Depression: consistent wind speeds of 23-39 mph and a circulation of wind in the center of the thunderstorm mass is detected.
  3. Tropical Storm: forms when the maximum sustained winds have intensified to 39-73 mph. Storms are typically given a name at this stage and are characterized by problems caused from very heavy rainfall.
  4. Hurricane: finally forms when surface pressures continue to drop, and winds reach 74 mph. There is now a clear and definite rotation around a calm center, or eye.

Hurricanes have their own categories which are defined by the Saffir Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale:

Category 1: Winds 74 to 95 mph (Minor damage)

Category 2: Winds 96 to 110 mph (Extensive damage — Can uproot trees and break windows)

Category 3: Winds 111 to 129 mph (Devastating — Can break windows and doors)

Category 4: Winds 130 to 156 mph (Catastrophic damage — Can tear off roofs)

Category 5: Winds 157 mph or higher (Can level houses and destroy buildings)

Setting Standards

11/4/2020 (Permalink)

Property restoration includes a wide area of services all with the primary purposes of cleaning up messes, repairing damages, restoring building structures and contents, and protecting fragile properties against further damages. The professionals who offer these services typically offer solutions for residential and commercial property owners who have suffered damages because of


Flooding and excess moisture
Fire, smoke, and soot
Sewage and odors
Severe weather and storms
Mold growth
Biohazards


Although property restoration professionals may have training and expertise in specialized areas, most are required to have met some certifications. The IICRC, or Institute of Inspection, Cleaning, and Restoration, is a certification organization that sets standards for the related industries.

What Is the Institute of Inspection, Cleaning, and Restoration?

The IICRC is a third-party certification agency that also oversees the training and education of restoration and cleanup technicians. Some of the classes that technicians study includes fire and water restoration, carpet cleaning, upholstery cleaning, and structural drying. Technicians may also earn certificates in mold remediation, restorative drying, and tarping services. If restoration professionals plan to work with biohazards, special training courses must be completed.

What Is Mitigation?

Mitigation is an important element of cleaning and restoration services. The goal of mitigation is to reduce losses by limiting the effect of disasters. When a property has been damaged by flooding or fires, it may seem that the extent of damages is complete. However, secondary damages are often a possibility. For example, mold growth can take place after floodwaters have been cleaned up. Once the flames of a property fire are gone, the structure may suffer secondary damages because moisture has been absorbed from the water used to fight the fire. A mitigation certificate shows that technicians have demonstrated their ability to prevent further losses.

The Importance of Industry Standard Makers

The IICRC plays a vital role in preparing property restoration and cleanup professionals to perform their jobs with top quality results. It also keeps industry standards high, protecting clients from all walks of life. If you require restoration services in Gainesville, GA, choose a company that lives up to these standards and requires trained employees.

Electrical Fires

11/4/2020 (Permalink)

Each year, there are 40,000 residential fires due to electrical wiring, claiming more than 350 lives, causing thousands of injuries from shocks and burns, creating 2 million and personal property damage. Electrical receptacles are responsible for 40 deaths and 5,300 fires.

Electricity is our most mysterious form of energy. You can’t see it, hear it or smell it, but you sure can feel it!

Electricity seeks the easiest path to the ground, trying to find a conductor, such as metal, wet wood, or water. Humans are conductors, since 70% of the body is water. So, if a person touches an energized bare wire or faulty equipment while grounded, electricity will instantly pass through the body to the ground, causing a harmful, potentially fatal shock.

Don’t Be Shocked:

  • It is estimated that 70% electrocutions could be prevented.
  • 32% of all deaths caused by residential electrical systems are as a result of faulty cords and plugs.
  • Electrical burns to the mouth accounted for half of the injuries to young to your children.
  • Electricity can kill in one second.

Treat electricity with the respect it deserves. Never assume anything! If you experience an electrical fire, please call the professionals at SERVPRO of Gainesville. We have years of know-how dealing with homes and businesses that have had extensive fire, soot and smoke damage, and we know what it takes to restore your Hall County residential or commercial property, “Like it never even happened.” Call us 24 hours a day, no job is too small to big for our team. We are always here to help at 770-536-1010.

Tornado 101

9/11/2020 (Permalink)

What is a Tornado?

Tornadoes are the most violent of all atmospheric storms. A tornado is a narrow, violently rotating column of air that extends from the base of a thunderstorm to the ground.

Where to Tornadoes occur?

Tornadoes can occur anywhere, at any time if the right atmospheric conditions are present. So, anytime you are near a thunderstorm, you need to be prepared and ready for a possible tornado.

How many tornadoes occur in the U.S. each year?

According to Wikipedia, there have been 1,267 preliminary filtered reports of tornadoes in the United States in 2019, of which at least 918 have been confirmed. 

What is the difference between a Tornado WATCH and a Tornado WARNING?

A Tornado WATCH means conditions are favorable for tornado activity.

A Tornado WARNING means a tornado has been reported by spotters or indicated by radar and there is a serious threat to life and property to those in the path of the tornado. Act now to find safe shelter immediately.

Cleanup after a Tornado?

Call the experts in Storm and Tornado cleanup: SERVPRO of Gainesville is ready and able to help you and your home and/or business board-up and cleanup after a Tornado.

24/7/365:  770-536-1010

The Water You Don't See

9/11/2020 (Permalink)

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

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

  • Moisture Sensors are used to detect moisture in carpets, baseboards and walls.
  • Moisture Meters are used to determine the actual moisture content of various materials. The moisture tester provides accurate readings, allowing SERVPRO of Gainesville Professionals to monitor the drying process.
  • Thermohygrometers measure temperature and relative humidity. When armed with this information, SERVPRO Professionals can calculate and create an environment most conducive to drying. When facing a contaminated water loss, it is not only important to dry the structure, but the structure must also be disinfected and often deodorized.
  • Ultra-Low-Volume (ULV) Foggers will atomize liquid deodorizing agents, producing a fine mist that can easily penetrate the site where odor-causing residues may accumulate. This device can also be used to inject fungicides and disinfectants into wall cavities and other hard-to-reach areas.
  • Thermal Foggers dispense solvent-based products by creating a dense fog. The fog consists of tiny particles of deodorant solution that attach to and neutralize odor-causing particles.

The bottom line? SERVPRO of Gainesville Professionals have the training and equipment to help make it "Like it never even happened." Call us at (770) 536-1010

The SERVPRO ERP

9/1/2020 (Permalink)

SERVPRO trucks, fountain, large building The creation of an emergency ready profile allows you to work with a qualified representative to develop a plan of action for when disaster strikes

The Importance of the Emergency Ready Profile

As a leader in restoration and disaster prevention, the professionals at SERVPRO have your business’s best interest at heart. One of the ways they are looking out for your business is through Emergency Ready Profiles. The creation of an emergency ready profile allows you to work with a qualified representative to develop a plan of action for when disaster strikes.

  1. What is it?

An Emergency Ready Profile is a file created for your business that contains an emergency plan of action. This profile allows you to minimize any prolonged business interruption by ensuring that SERVPRO is ready and prepared to help with a simple phone call.

2. How Can It Help?

The ERP helps provide you with a level of security that many do not have after experiencing a disaster. After assessing your facility, identifying a line of command, and establishing an emergency profile, you will know that when disaster strikes, a qualified professional has your back and knows just what to do and who to contact.

3. Does It Matter for Your Business?

The research doesn’t lie: After a disaster strikes, many businesses, about 50 percent, have to close down. Having an Emergency Ready Profile in place allows SERVPRO to take action immediately following a disaster. By taking fast action, you can limit business interruption, meaning that you can get back to doing what you do best as quickly as possible.

4. How Can You Get Started?

You can get started creating your emergency profile by contacting a SERVPRO representative in the Gainesville and Hall County, area or logging onto the ERP app. Once you have initiated contact, a representative will reach out to find out the best time to schedule your facility’s free assessment.

An ERP is an excellent way to protect your business and your interests. You can call SERVPRO of Gainesville at 770-536-1010 for help in creating your business's Emergency Ready Profile today.

Candle Safety

9/1/2020 (Permalink)

Do you enjoy that fresh baked apple pie or evergreen candle smell?

Before Lighting – here are some tips on candle burning safety. 

  • Trim the wick to ¼ inch each time before burning. Long or crooked wicks can cause uneven burning, dripping or flaring.
  • Always use a candleholder specifically designed for candle use. It should be heat resistant, sturdy, and large enough to contain any drips or melted wax.
  • Burn candles in a well-ventilated room.
  • Place the candle-holder on a stable, heat-resistant surface. This will also help prevent possible heat damage to counters and table surfaces and prevent glass containers from cracking or breaking.
  • Keep the wax pool clear of wick trimmings, matches and debris at all times.
  • Avoid drafts, vents or air currents. This will help prevent rapid or uneven burning, sooting, and excessive dripping.
  • Follow the manufacturer’s recommendations on burn time and proper use.

Expertise Beyond Fire and Water

8/14/2020 (Permalink)

We are well known for our expertise in cleaning up after some of the most extensive water, fire and mold damage. We have helped Gainesville and other Hall County property owners through many emergencies. The technicians at SERVPRO of Gainesville are also trained in duct cleaning, odor control, construction clean up and content cleaning. 

Duct cleaning: If you’re having unexplained allergy related illness, excessive pet hair or debris coming from the air vents, bad odors, or visible mold. These could make the air quality in a home uncomfortable. Duct cleaning can help.  

Odor control: Tobacco, pets and years of buildup can be challenging odors to combat. The right cleaning solutions, equipment and expertise can bring a pleasant smell back to your home or business. 

Construction clean up: when your remodeling project leaves dust everywhere, we can help. We specialize in fine particle cleaning. When your traditional cleaning methods are not working it may be time to call in the pros. 

Content clean up: We all have items in our house we consider priceless. Your heirlooms or household items in need of specialized cleaning or items you thought could never be cleaned could be renewed with proper care.  

Let us help. Give us a call here at SERVPRO of Gainesville. 770-536-1010.

Common Causes for Water Damage

8/14/2020 (Permalink)

Pressurized water supply lines are one of the leading reasons that a home may suffer a flood. Take time to inspect your supply lines and replace them if they appear cracked or show signs of deterioration. You could be saving yourself time and money, and your home from damage. 

You can help prevent a flooding disaster by checking these key areas: refrigerator lines, washing machine hoses, and toilet water supply lines. These supply lines usually are easily accessible and can be changed with pliers or an adjustable wrench. If you don't feel comfortable doing this yourself, or if you need assistance, a family member or local handyman could help you. 

Let's focus on the toilet in your bathroom as a potential cause for water damage. Here are some of the most common reasons you may experience loss from a faulty toilet: 

1-Leaking supply line is the line that connects the plumbing coming out of the floor to the toilet tank. This line is under continuous pressure, which means that if the hose begins to leak, it will continue to leak until the water line is turned off.

 2-Old worn-out mechanical parts inside the tank can cause the toilet to run continuously and even overflow onto the floor, resulting in severe water damage to the floor, walls, and everything beneath. 

3-The old worn-out wax ring that is at the base of the toilet where it connects to the floor. This wax ring can deteriorate out over time, causing water to leak at the base of the toilet. 

4-Tank-to base washer is worn-out or pinched. If the tank is not seated correctly to the base, the washer could fail. Or, if the washer has aged too much, water can leak when flowing down to the bowl. 

The water supply lines in a typical home or business are under and have continuous pressure, and if there's a leak or break, water will run out until it's shut off or fixed at the main water shut-off. Leaks inside walls are notorious for causing a lot of damage. These leaks are often unseen, slow, and gradual, so damage builds up and compounds itself over a period of time. To no fault of their own, homeowners don't see the problem until it's too late, and much damage has occurred. 

We are water damage restoration specialist and are ready to restore your Hall County home or business to pre-water damage conditions. We quickly extract the water and then dry your property using state-of-the-art equipment. SERVPRO of Gainesville uses moisture monitoring equipment to effectively measure and document the drying process to ensure your property is dry. 

Call us 24/7 for emergency water extraction and dry out your property and make it "Like it never even happened."

Storm Season: Protecting Your Garage

8/5/2020 (Permalink)

We are currently in the peak of storm season when tropical storms and hurricanes are popping up regularly.  But what if you don't live near the coast?  Is there still a threat during storm season?  The answer is YES!  In the south, with high temperatures and humidity, storms can be extremely dangerous.  When planning to protect your home one of the most vulnerable areas is your garage.  Your garage is susceptible to high winds and flooding.  Here are a few tips to storm-proof your garage:

  • When purchasing a garage door look for one with a high wind-resistance rating.  If a storm with very strong winds or a tornado comes through and your garage door is breached the winds can batter your home.  This can lead to water coming in and causing costly damage.  For areas prone to tornado's it is recommended that you invest in a garage door that can withstand 130 mph or higher winds.
  • When installing your garage door consider installing a bracing system.  This will reinforce the integrity of the door by anchoring the door to the walls and floors and into each hinge.
  • Make sure to do proper maintenance to your garage door.  Repair any breaches or holes that would allow wind to get through the garage door.  Also make sure to check the weather stripping and mechanisms for proper functionality.
  • Do you have windows in your garage?  Make sure they are secure and their weather stripping is in proper condition.  Having wrought-iron window protection also greatly helps in protecting the glass from flying debris.
  • Install flood vents and proper drainage.  You can have a trench drain installed to divert water, and flood vents inside the garage can drain water getting through before levels rise and cause damage.

At SERVPRO of Gainesville we believe in being prepared for any emergency.  We can handle any of your storm or water damage emergencies.  Call us at 770-536-1010 24/7 for your emergency needs.

Five Steps to Avoid a Gas Explosion in Your Home

8/5/2020 (Permalink)

If a strong odor is lingering in your home that smells similar to rotten eggs or sulfur, it is possible you have a gas leak. You might also hear a faint hissing noise. While natural gas is not toxic to breathe in, leaking gas is extremely flammable and is considered an immediate emergency. If you smell gas in your home, quickly take these five steps to avoid a gas explosion and keep your family safe. 

1. Turn Off the Stove 

Often, a suspected gas leak is actually the smell of gas from the stove that someone accidentally turned on. If that’s the case, quickly turn off the stove. Is the stove is not the source of the smell, make sure the oven and stove are both turned off regardless to prevent a gas fire.

2. Put Out Any Open Flames

If you smell a gas leak, never use a lighter or ignite any kind of flame. If any candles are lit or the fireplace is on, quickly extinguish the flames. 

3. Keep Lights and Electronics Off

As soon as you detect the smell of natural gas in your home, refrain from turning on any lights or electronics which can start a gas fire. Grab a flashlight if necessary. 

4. Open Doors and Windows

Allow gas to quickly escape your home by opening all the windows and doors. You can turn on the oven range hood fan to help remove some of the gas. 

5. Evacuate Your Home

As soon as you feel it is unsafe to remain in your home, quickly get everyone, including pets, out of your home. Once you make it across the street from your home call 9-1-1. 

Keeping your family safe and escaping your home should always be your priority if you smell a gas leak. If a gas fire does start, a fire damage restoration specialist can help restore your home back to its pre-fire condition.

Mold in Crawlspaces

8/4/2020 (Permalink)

In the humid south, moisture is constantly present in the air. Combining moisture with a dark and undisturbed area, such as a crawlspace, will often lead to mold growth.

Crawlspaces are rarely bothered by homeowners as they are usually small, dark, closed off, and house various bugs or other unwanted critters. When we avoid crawl spaces however, we prevent air circulation and sunlight in the area. The unbothered area is an ideal place for mold growth because moisture is not evaporated, and the temperature is kept relatively constant.

Mold thrives in areas that are moist and kept at a temperature ranging from 60 to 80 degrees. A crawl space ends up being an ideal place for mold growth due to its environmental conditions.

Considering you don’t regularly go into your crawl space, and it isn’t open to the rest of your home, you may think a little mold is nothing to worry about. Unfortunately, mold in these areas can still affect your and your family’s health.

Mold spores are tiny and easily released into the air. Spores can slip through cracks, be pulled in from air conditioning systems, or even float through open doors or windows. The mold spores can cause health effects when breathed in on a regular basis.

Concerned about mold in your crawlspace? Call SERVPRO of Gainesville at 770-536-1010.

Commercial Fire Sprinkler Malfunction

8/4/2020 (Permalink)

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

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

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

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

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

Making A Small Fire "Like it never even happened"

7/24/2020 (Permalink)

Even a small fire can cause odors for years to come if the affected areas are not properly cleaned and deodorized. Fire, smoke and soot damage in your home or business can create unpleasant and potentially permanent problems.

With technicians certified by the Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration (IICRC), SERVPRO of Gainesville professionals provide specialized services that can rid your home or business of offensive odors left by fire or smoke damage. SERVPRO of Gainesville professionals do not cover-up lingering odors with fragrance; they seek out and remove the sources of the odor. Once the source is found, SERVPRO’s own proprietary line of cleaning products is used to treat and prevent the odor from returning. Any restorable item in affected areas will also be professionally cleaned and deodorized, including furniture, draperies and upholstery, electronics, art, flooring, walls, ceilings, HVAC air ducts, and more. Ask your SERVPRO of Gainesville professional to explain the various deodorization methods available and which will work best for you. If you suffer a fire damage or some other accident and require deodorization services, contact us at 770-536-1010. Whether it’s fire, water, or mold damage, or just a stubborn odor that refuses to go away, we’ll help make it “Like it never even happened.”

Preparing for a Storm

7/24/2020 (Permalink)

Preparing for a Storm

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 aid 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 Gainesville at 770-536-1010!

24 Hour Emergency Water Damage Service

7/21/2020 (Permalink)

SERVPRO truck, van, box truck, house, yard We're available 24 hours a day 365 days a year if you have water damage in your Hall County home.

Hall County 24 Hour Emergency Water Damage Service

SERVPRO of Gainesville 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 - (770) 536-1010

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 Gainesville 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 Gainesville

SERVPRO of Gainesville 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.

Ozone for Commercial Properties

7/21/2020 (Permalink)

Ozone for Commercial Properties

Commercial deodorizers may help fight some airborne pungent odors, but to eliminate other foul odors, it may be necessary to do an ozone treatment. Ozone is used to destroy undesirable smells just about anywhere, in full-time and vacation homes, apartments, basements, nursing homes, cars, trucks, buses, boats, classrooms, locker rooms, offices, and gymnasiums. Ozone is also approved by the FDA to be used in food processing plants to scrub yeast and mold spores from the air because of its great deodorizing and disinfecting abilities.

SERVPRO'S ozone generators are extremely effective because they produce O3 which attacks odors at their source, even if they are clinging to walls, fabrics and ductwork. SERVPRO ozone generators intentionally produce the toxic gas, ozone, that is used for commercial and residential applications. When contaminates such as odors, bacteria or viruses contact ozone, their chemical structure is changed to a less odorous compounds. As more ozone attacks the remaining compounds, they are eventually destroyed. This process is called oxidation. Ozone essentially reverts to harmless oxygen after it is used.

So, if you are dealing with smoke odors, pet odors, musty odors, tobacco odors, or food and cooking odors? Give SERVPRO of Gainesville a call at 770-536-1010

When Shouldn't You Use Drain Cleaner?

6/30/2020 (Permalink)

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

Plastic Pipes

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

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

Total Blockage

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

Old Pipes

Old pipes will have a lot of the same problems as plastic pipes, because they are brittle and delicate. If you discover that your pipes are old or rusting, you are probably better off replacing your plumbing rather than going through sewage cleaning. New pipes are the best way to ensure that one doesn't burst, and you have water damage remediation to deal with instead of a blockage.


Most people don't even know there are other options for dealing with a clogged drain. Instead of chemical cleaner, you can try a drain snake. Ask your local hardware store for more guidance.

Guide to Commercial Fire Sprinklers

6/29/2020 (Permalink)

Installing a fire sprinkler system at your business in Gainesville, GA was an easy decision. You trust this ingenious invention to save your property and potentially your life. But have you ever wondered how the sprinklers really work? What happens in the case of accidental activation?

How Fire Sprinklers Work

The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) sets codes and standards for sprinklers and installation. Codes require that new construction commercial buildings are fitted with a sprinkler system. If you have an older building, a trained contractor can retro-fit a system at your property.

  • There are several types of systems that can be installed depending on the type of building. The most popular type used in commercial properties is the wet pipe system. Other types include dry, pre-action, foam and deluge.
  • In a wet pipe system, a series of fire-resistant pipes are fitted in the walls or ceilings. The pipes are filled with pressurized water at all times.
  • In an emergency the sprinklers attached to the pipes activate based on the temperature in the air. A fire sprinkler does not turn on from smoke as a typical smoke alarm does. Fire suppression results from water being forcefully pushed from the pipe. All sprinklers in the building do not activate at once, only in rooms where the high temperature triggers a response.

How To Manage Accidental Activation

On rare occasion sprinklers may accidentally activate and dump gallons of water into your business. Know how to prevent and deal with a fire sprinkler cleanup situation.

  • Prevent accidental activation by properly maintaining the sprinkler system. Regularly inspect the sprinklers for leaks and the pipes for adequate pressure.
  • If a sprinkler accidentally goes off, turn off the main water source. Contact a fire and water restoration specialist to contain and repair the water damage. Call your insurance agent and inquire whether this event is covered in your policy.

Protect your business from fire damage in Gainesville, GA, with smoke alarms and a functional fire sprinkler system. Although rare, if an accidental activation occurs act fast to prevent secondary water damage. 

When Your Basement Floods

6/29/2020 (Permalink)

Gainesville, Georgia Residents: We Specialize in Flooded Basement Cleanup and Restoration!

A basement can flood at any time, although flooding most often occurs during heavy rainfall. Basements are inherently prone to flooding because they are the lowest level of a building and are normally built partly or entirely below ground level. There are several reasons why your basement could flood, including: 

  • A blocked or failed sewer lateral pipe
  • Heavy rain causes surface water to pool around your home
  • Storm sewer backup
  • Sanitary sewer backup
  • Foundation drainage failure
  • Water supply-line break or hot-water tank failure
  • And many more

Have Questions about Basement Flooding?

Call Today 770-536-1010

If flood water is not handled quickly and properly, it can jeopardize your health and safety, and cause severe damage to your home’s structure. Remember, the longer you wait, the worse the problem will get.

The bottom line: a flooded basement can jeopardize your health, safety, and your home’s integrity. It’s worth making a call to SERVPRO of Gainesville, Georgia and let our trained, professional crews handle the situation safely and correctly. We have earned the trust of hundreds of homeowners, business owners, and property professionals.

We are Flooded Basement Specialists:

  • We are available 24 hours/7 days per week
  • We’re a preferred vendor to many national insurance companies
  • We bill the insurance directly – one less thing for you to worry about
  • Our technicians are highly-trained in water restoration techniques
  • We use s500 IICRC restoration standards
  • Advanced inspection and extraction equipment

Basement Flooded?  Call SERVPRO of Gainesville 770-536-1010.

Summer Grilling and Firework Safety

6/26/2020 (Permalink)

Summer is synonymous with barbecues, parades, and firework displays.  Along with all the festivities are plenty of visits to emergency rooms, especially during July. Each year, an average of 230 people are injured badly enough to require medical treatment after firework-related incidents, according to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission. In addition to causing injury, fireworks are also responsible for thousands of house fires each year with millions of dollars in property damage.

There is nothing like firing up the grill during the summer months? A backyard barbecue can become dangerous if safety precautions aren't considered. Your local SERVPRO of Gainesville professionals want you to have an enjoyable and safe summer. Consider the following tips to ensure your summer celebrations are disaster-free!

  • Propane and charcoal BBQ grills should only be used outdoors.
  • The grill should be placed away from the home, deck railings, and out from under eaves and overhanging branches.
  • Keep children and pets away from grill area.
  • Keep your grill clean by removing grease or fat buildup from the grills and in trays below the grill.
  • Never leave your grill unattended.
  • When using a charcoal grill, let the coals completely cool before disposing in a metal container.
  • Anyone using fireworks or standing nearby should wear protective eyewear.
  • Do not try to re-light or handle malfunctioning fireworks. Keep a bucket of water nearby or a water hose to fully extinguish fireworks that don't go off or in case of fire.
  • Children should never pick up leftover fireworks as they may still be active.
  • The safest way to enjoy fireworks is to attend a public display conducted by trained professionals.

Tips and information provided by the National Fire Protection Association

Earthquakes

6/26/2020 (Permalink)

What is an earthquake?  An earthquake is the sudden, rapid shaking of the earth, caused by the breaking and shifting of underground rock. Earthquakes can cause buildings to collapse and cause heavy items to fall, resulting in injuries and property damage. Earthquakes can:

  • Happen anywhere – though higher risk areas include California, Alaska, and the Mississippi Valley;
  • Happen without warning;
  • Cause fires and damage roads; and
  • Cause tsunamis, landslides, and avalanches.

If an earthquake happens, protect yourself right away. Drop, Cover, then Hold On!

  • If in a vehicle, pull over and stop.
  • If in bed, stay there.
  • If outdoors, stay outdoors.
  • Do not get in a doorway.
  • Do not run outside.

HOW TO STAY SAFE WHEN AN EARTHQUAKE THREATENS

Prepare NOW

  • Secure items, such as televisions, and objects that hang on walls. Store heavy and breakable objects on low shelves.
  • Practice Drop, Cover, then Hold On with family and coworkers. Drop to your hands and knees. Cover your head and neck with your arms. Crawl only as far as needed to reach cover from falling materials. Hold on to any sturdy furniture until the shaking stops.
  • Create a family emergency communications plan that has an out-of-state contact. Plan where to meet if you get separated.
  • Make a supply kit that includes enough food and water for at least three days, a flashlight, a fire extinguisher, and a whistle. Consider each person’s specific needs, including medication. Do not forget the needs of pets. Have extra batteries and charging devices for phones and other critical equipment.
  • Consider obtaining an earthquake insurance policy. Standard homeowner’s insurance does not cover earthquake damage.
  • Consider a retrofit of your building to correct structural issues that make it vulnerable to collapse during an earthquake.

AC Leaks - How to Prevent

5/6/2020 (Permalink)

In the south our A/C systems are often working overtime to keep us cool.  Occasionally your A/C system will have a leak and depending on the location of your air handler this can result in water damage to your home. Water leakage from a central air conditioner is almost always related to the condensate drip pan and drain system, located at the indoor air handler inside the house. Since the A/C evaporator coil inside the air handler can generate over 20 gallons of condensation on a humid day, the potential for substantial water damage in the event of a malfunction is clear. How can you avoid A/C water leaks?

Check the condensate drip pan regularly – This large flat pan located underneath the indoor air handler catches condensate as it drips off the A/C evaporator coil. Collected condensate drains out of the pan into a drain line usually plumbed into the household sewer line or discharges somewhere outside the house. If it’s cooling season and the air conditioner is running, the drain pan will likely be wet. However, you should not notice standing water in the pan. This usually indicates a clogged or sluggish condensate drain line and an impending damaging overflow. Also, look around the perimeter of the pan for signs of leakage such as wet spots or puddles. Drip pans may crack or corrode with age, seeping small amounts of water gradually. Contact a qualified HVAC service provider if you see standing water or evidence of leakage.

Consider an automatic shut-off switch – To avoid water damage from the condensate system, an automatic shutoff switch detects excess standing water in the drain pan and turns off power to the air conditioner before an overflow occurs.

Get regular A/C service – Mold growth inside the wet drip pan is a frequent cause of clogs in the drain line. Annual preventive maintenance by a qualified HVAC technician includes inspecting the condensate drain system, cleaning the pan and installing time-release biocide tablets in the pan to inhibit mold and algae growth all season long.

If you have water damage from your HVAC system call SERVPRO of Gainesville at 770-536-1010

Smoke Damage in Your Commercial Property

5/5/2020 (Permalink)

Whether your commercial property in Gainesville, Georgia, has experienced a fire or a fire has occurred nearby, smoke damage is typically a covered loss. Depending on the proximity of the fire, soot damage can pose a threat to the condition of your property. The smell of smoke can also disturb employees and customers, but it is relatively easy to eliminate this odor with the right devices. Read on to learn about the specific types of damage that smoke can cause to a property and smoke cleaning methods.

Smoke can damage a property in several ways:

• Degrade air quality
• Discolor walls and contents
• Stain upholstery
• Corrode metals
• Degrade appliance finishes
• Strip wood finishes

Smoke can be particularly damaging if it has a high acid content. During a fire, hot air carries smoke and soot as it rises and expands, spreading both throughout the surrounding area. Layers of smoke and soot can form a residue on top of every surface that becomes more difficult to clean over time. It is important to contact restoration experts for smoke damage as soon as possible.

Hiring experts can prevent smoke and soot from lingering and causing damage over time. Cleaning experts will perform several steps to restore your commercial property to pre-fire condition, including: 

• Inspecting and assessing the extent of the damage
• Removing smoke and soot from surfaces using specialized equipment and techniques
• Cleaning all restorable items and surfaces
• Filtering the air with air scrubbers and using ozone or fogging equipment to neutralize odors

If you are concerned about soot or smoke residue inside of electronics, ask the experts to take a look. Acidic smoke residue can corrode metal within devices and cause them to fail. Regardless of the extent of the smoke damage or soot damage, the right smoke cleaning service can eliminate the problem and completely restore your commercial property in

How Long Was My Power Out?

5/5/2020 (Permalink)

Cup, coin, ice Using a coin in a cup of frozen water is a simple way to tell if the food in your freezer may have spoiled.

How Long Was Your Power Off While You Were Away?

You might think a power outage occurring while you were away wouldn’t be that big of a deal, but if you leave food in your refrigerator or freezer that you plan to eat when you return, you’ll want to know whether your power went out, and if it did, whether your food warmed up enough and for long enough to spoil.

There is a simple solution to tell if you may need to consider disposing of food in your refrigerator and freezer. You can simply leave a coin on a cup of ice in your freezer before you leave.

Just fill up a cup of water, put it in the freezer until it’s solid, then add a coin on top and stick it back in the freezer

If the coin is at the bottom of the cup when you return, then there was a power outage that went on for long enough for the water to melt, causing the coin to fall through. When the power comes back on, the coin will be stuck in the frozen water at the bottom. If the coin is still at the top when you get home, the power stayed on or went out just temporarily.

Because water takes a very long time to melt in an insulated freezer, a quarter at the bottom of the cup will tell you that your food is almost definitely spoiled, since the power would have had to be off for quite some time.

The Importance of Acting Quickly After a Disaster

5/1/2020 (Permalink)

When a disaster strikes, it is imperative to respond quickly in order to prevent further damages and complications. Fires, mold infestations and floods from broken pipes, overflows or heavy storms – all such disasters must be dealt with in a timely manner. If not handled immediately you could experience one or more of these issues:

  • If water-damaged structures and contents are not dried out quickly and correctly, potential health risks can develop. Mold can begin to grow within the first 24 to 48 hours after the disaster.
  • Excessive water can cause: rusting in metals, corrosion in electronic components, cracking, splitting or warping of furniture items, color bleeding or transfer in fabrics, furniture stains and secondary damage to upholstery, drapery, clothing, wallpaper, photos and papers.
  • Fire or smoke damaged properties can also experience irreversible damage, regardless of the size of the fire. Soot residue is highly acidic and can pit or corrode the metal in doorknobs, plumbing fixtures, light fixtures, etc. It can also etch glass in windows, mirrors and cabinets, causing them to look soiled and cloudy. Moreover, plastics, appliances, fabrics and vinyl windows can become discolored.
  • The safety and security of the home can be compromised. Windows and doors may become weak and function improperly, wet materials may collapse and electrical installations and components can be a health hazard when they come in contact with water. Slips and falls are also potential dangers.

If you’re not sure how to act after experiencing water, fire or mold problems in your home or business, contact SERVPRO of Gainesville at 770-536-1010. We have a team of restoration professionals ready 24/7/365 to help you

Proper Placement of Fire Alarms and Smoke Detectors

5/1/2020 (Permalink)

Properly preparing for the unthinkable at your home in Gainesville and Hall County, Georgia, can potentially save lives. This is why it’s important to maintain your early warning devices. A fire alarm is designed to alert you as soon as possible after smoke and/or heat is detected so that you can extinguish the fire or escape the building. But have you considered checking to make sure your home is properly equipped?

Fire Alarm Placement

The placement of these units is key to the safety of your family and home. The National Fire Protection Association recommends installing detectors in the following locations:

  • Each level of the house (including basement)
  • Each bedroom
  • Hallways that connect multiple rooms
  • Near stairs
  • Living room
  • Garage

When checking your home for fire alarm placement, make sure that they are located no more than 12 inches from the ceiling. Basements are an exception; there you will want to place the alarm on the ceiling at the bottom of the stairs. They should also be placed at least 10 feet from a cooking appliance. The operation of the alarms could be affected by drafts, so be sure to place them away from doors, windows, vents and ducts.

Fire Alarm Maintenance

Make sure you test the functionality of all fire alarms once a month. Even a hardwired unit has batteries in case of a power outage, so it’s important to replace all batteries twice a year. You can remind yourself by replacing the alarm batteries when you adjust your clocks for daylight saving time. Cleaning should be done occasionally with a vacuum brush attachment. It’s recommended that a fire alarm is replaced every 10 years. 


Fire detection devices are critical to your home safety. With correct placement and maintenance, they will alert you to potential danger before a fire gets out of hand. Should smoke damage or fire damage occur, a fire cleanup professional is Here to Help.

Keep Your HVAC Clean

4/9/2020 (Permalink)

Keep your HVAC System Clean to Reduce the Chances of Microbial Growth

Mold in HVAC (heating, ventilation and air conditioning) systems can cause serious health problems. When the furnace or air conditioner is turned on, microscopic mold spores can blow out of the air ducts and circulate through the air, where they are easily inhaled.

Keeping your Ducting and the Intake clean is vital to reducing the amount of contamination your HVAC system has.

If you see visible mold, do not disturb it. You can inadvertently spread the mold infestation throughout your home. When mold is disturbed, the mold can release microscopic mold spores which become airborne and can circulate inside your home.

What to Do:

  • Stay out of affected areas.
  • Turn off the HVAC system and fans.
  • Contact SERVPRO for mold remediation services.

What Not to Do:

  • Don’t touch or disturb the mold.
  • Don’t blow air across any surfaces with visible or suspected mold growth.
  • Don’t attempt to dry the area yourself.
  • Don’t spray bleach or other disinfectants on the mold.

About Our Mold Remediation Services

SERVPRO specializes in mold cleanup and restoration, in fact, it’s a cornerstone of our business.  Our crews are highly trained restoration professionals that use specialized equipment and techniques to properly remediate your mold problem quickly and safely.

If You See Signs of Mold, Call Us Today SERVPRO of Gainesville, 770-536-1010

Restoring Commercial Property After Water Damage

4/8/2020 (Permalink)

Restoring Your Hall County Commercial Property After A Water Damage Event

Flooding and water damage events at Hall County 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 Gainesville

SERVPRO of Gainesville 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.

The Ins and Outs of Basement Flooding

4/8/2020 (Permalink)

If you have a basement in your Hall County home, you probably are well aware of the looming threat of flooding in this infamous room. Sometimes it can't be avoided, so it's in your best interest to arm yourself with knowledge in preparation for this damp event.

Causes

In order to prevent a basement flood before it occurs, or prevent more flooding after an initial incident, you will need to locate the source. There are many ways for water to pool at this lowest point in your house, so you will want to make a thorough inspection. Some usual suspects are:

  • Hurricanes or heavy rain
  • Poor drainage
  • Inadequate sealing
  • Pipe or appliance rupture
  • Sump pump failure

Professional Solutions

Often, homeowners don't have the time or equipment to deal with flooding thoroughly. In this case, do your best to stop the flooding if it is coming from inside the house, and turn it over to the professionals here at SERVPRO of Gainesville. Try to have a water damage remediation service picked out beforehand so you can be sure they are a company you can trust. In the meantime, remove as much contents as you can to a drying area outside and turn off the electricity in your basement.

Pumping

It is possible to pump out the water yourself, especially if your basement is bare and any pipe repair is already done. You can rent a submersible pump from your local hardware store. You will need to use a generator and extension cord so that the electricity can remain off in the water damaged area. Be sure to point the hose carrying the water out of the basement away from your house, ideally into a storm drain.


Flooding isn't the end of the world if you properly dry it out, or call people who can pump and ventilate for you. If you have a plan, you won't have time to panic while you are efficiently restoring your home. Be the best homeowner you can be!

Is it time to replace the battery in your smoke detector?

4/1/2020 (Permalink)

It's a great habit to replace the battery in your smoke detector annually.

But did you know that smoke detectors lose their effectiveness over time? The US Fire Administration says that most smoke detectors today have a life span of about 8-10 years. At that point, the entire unit should be replaced. When you replace the unit, write the date purchased on the inside with a sharpie to have on record.

A smoke detector is an essential component of your home's safety equipment and having at least one smoke detector means that your surroundings are safer. That’s great, but you just need to take the necessary steps to keep your smoke detector in proper working order and that doesn't necessarily mean doings a whole home smoke detector replacement, but rather checking and replacing their batteries. Generally, your smoke detector will let you know if the battery is low. If your smoke detector keeps chirping or there is a blinking red light you might need to change the battery. The smoke detector red light could also indicate that your system is over 10 years old and needs to be replaced. A hard-wired smoke detector with a red blinking light could indicate that there’s a problem with the wire connection. If you’re not sure it might be a good idea to do a quick search on the internet to find out

Summer showers

4/1/2020 (Permalink)

Summer Showers Bring May Flowers – And Sometimes They Don’t Drain

In the event of water damaged caused by flooding our team is well equipped and well trained to make it "Like it never even happened." Here are a few tips to help get the situation under control until we get there:

  1. Remove as much excess water as possible by mopping and blotting.
  2. Remove and prop up wet upholstery cushions to help even out the drying process.
  3. Try and wipe up the excess water from any wood furniture after removing all tabletop items
  4. Do not leaves books, newspapers, magazines or other colored items on any flooring to avoid possible staining. 

Call SERVPRO of Gainesville in the event of water damage. (770) 736-1010

Water Damage May Be Hiding in Your Home

3/4/2020 (Permalink)

crawlspace, hvac ducts, plastic, water damage Water can flow through hvac floor vents into your ductwork below your house as it did in this Hall County home.

Water can be hiding around your house, and you not even know it. Heavy wind-driven rain from a storm, or even just the normal day-to-day activities can lead to water damages. Building materials and water don't mix. Insulation, wood studs, plywood sheathing, and subflooring can all degrade, rot, or develop mold when they're repeatedly saturated with water. 

Making the situation even worse, this water damage is often hidden from sight, tucked away between walls or under floors. As a result, significant structural damage can occur before it's discovered. Here are some places around the house that are particularly vulnerable to getting wet and staying wet. 

Behind the Drywall After Flooding

 Any time flood waters rise above floor level, whether it's from high rains or a burst water supply pipe, all drywall along the lower portion of the wall must be inspected and likely replaced. Even if the water subsides quickly and the wall looks fine, mold can be quickly developing behind the wall. Keep in mind that the electrical wiring may also have been damaged. 

Under the Sink

 A slow drip from a water line or the drain line beneath a kitchen or bathroom sink will often go unnoticed until a musty smell alerts you that something's not right. Because the area under a sink is dark, it's a prime place for mold to develop when moisture is present. It's a good idea to check regularly under sinks with a flashlight to ensure that a slow drip isn't causing any moisture problems. 

Beneath the Dishwasher

 Dishwashers are sealed to keep the water inside the tub, but leaks can develop in the joints of the water supply line that runs to the dishwasher or in the drain line beneath. Because you can't see under the dishwasher, over time a slow leak can do severe damage to the subfloor. The damage may not be discovered until you remove the dishwasher to replace it with a new one and realize, to your annoyance, that you'll have to replace a section of the floor as well. 

Inside Walls Beneath the Windows

 Windows are a prime spot for water leaks. Rain can seep in between the window sash and the jamb and trickle down to the framing studs in the wall without your ever knowing it's happening. Over time, repeated leaks can rot wall studs and other wood framing members, which can lead to expensive repairs. 

Under the Siding

 Common locations for water leaks in siding are at the corners of the house, anywhere two siding panels meet, and around the windows where the siding meets the trim. Unsealed gaps in these spots allow water to trickle beneath the siding and eventually rot the plywood sheathing that lies beneath. The damage may remain hidden until the siding is replaced. 

Exterior Door Threshold

 The wood beneath the metal threshold of an exterior door is subject to saturation every time it rains. While treated wood is commonly for this application, even treated wood will eventually swell and become spongy when continually exposed to moisture. Damage may not be noticed until the metal threshold starts to work loose when the wood beneath has begun to rot and can no longer support it. 

Exterior Windowsills

 This is a common spot for water damage in older homes with windows that have been painted numerous times over the years. Just a tiny trickle of water through cracks in the paint can slowly rot away the wood without your noticing. To check for problems, take a screwdriver and press firmly along a sill. If there's hidden damage, the screwdriver tip will sink into the soft, damaged wood. 

Next to the Tub or Shower

 Wherever water lines run within walls, there's a chance for leaks to develop. While modern plumbing techniques have reduced the risk, plumbing connections (where pipes attach to other pipes) still have the potential to spring a leak. You won't have a clue that this is happening unless water begins to pool beside a fixture or the floor near it becomes spongy because the subfloor is rotting.

Under a Wobbly Toilet

 To help seal the connection, a wax ring fits between the base of a toilet and the toilet flange that connects to the drainpipe beneath. The wax is soft and pliable, which makes it well suited for this job, but also means that it can leak over time. If there's a problem with the wax ring, you may notice a little bit of water around the base of the toilet, but it's more likely that you won't see any water at all—although it will be soaking into the subfloor all the same. In fact, the first indication that you have a problem may be a toilet that starts to wobble because the floor supporting it is rotting away. 

Behind a Shower Surround

 Unless your bathtub is a single, molded unit, there a good chance the caulk between the tub and the surround will one day fail, allowing water to leak in and damage the wood studs and framing materials. Keep an eye on the condition of the caulk, and if it's starting to discolor or pull away, remove it and replace it with fresh new caulk. 

Around a Chimney

 Roof penetrations, such as for chimneys, vents, and exhaust fans, extend through the shingles and roof deck. If they aren't properly sealed, water can seep in and damage the roof deck without anyone noticing. Having the roof professionally inspected annually will help pinpoint problems around penetrations so they can be repaired before you're on the hook for a complete roof replacement. 

Inside an HVAC Unit

 The indoor part of an HVAC unit features a shallow pan that collects condensed water that forms on its evaporator coils when the air conditioning is running. From there, the water is directed to a floor drain via a small line. If this line becomes clogged—unfortunately, not a rare occurrence—the water accumulates in the drip pan or even overflows, creating the perfect environment for mold to develop inside the HVAC unit. 

Behind an Exterior Faucet

 Exterior faucets are hot spots for hidden leaks because the faucet connects to a water pipe just beneath the siding—a place where it's difficult to make a secure connection. If a leak develops here, the water often runs down the inside of the wall, where it can do major damage to sheathing and framing members before it's discovered. 

Behind the Washing Machine

 The hot and cold-water hoses from the machine attached to valves already installed in the wall. These couplings are similar to those on garden hoses, and if they're not attached snugly, or if the rubber washer in a coupling fails, they're prone to leaking. Once the washing machine is in place, the valves are typically hidden behind the machine, and a slow leak can saturate the drywall unnoticed, destroying it and allowing mold to develop. 

Below a Window Air Conditioner

 Air conditioners remove moisture from the air as they cool it. The moisture, or condensation, is then directed through a tube to the outside of the house. As a window air conditioner ages, the tube can become clogged, or come loose entirely, causing the condensation to spill out of the unit and drain into the wall space below, rotting wood studs and sheathing without anyone knowing what's going on.

Floodplains

3/3/2020 (Permalink)

Floodplains What Are They and How to Protect Your Property

A floodplain is an area of land adjacent to a stream or river which stretches from the banks of its channel to the base of the enclosing valley walls, and which experiences flooding during periods of high discharge.  The soils usually consist of levees, silts and sands deposited during floods.  

Historically, many towns have been built on floodplains where they are highly susceptible to flooding for a number of reasons

  • access to fresh water
  • the fertility of floodplain land for farming
  • cheap transportation, via rivers and railroads which often followed rivers
  • ease of development of flat land

The extent of floodplain inundation depends in part on the flood magnitude.  What should you do to reduce the potential amount of damage to your home if you live in a floodplain?

  • Elevate and reinforce your home to make damage less likely during a flood.
  • Check with a professional to:
    • Raise your furnace, water heater, and electric panel to floors that are less likely to be flooded. An undamaged water heater may be your best source of fresh water after a flood.
    • Install check valves in plumbing to prevent floodwater from backing up into the drains of your home. (As a last resort, when floods threaten, use large corks or stoppers to plug showers, tubs, or basins.)
    • Construct barriers such as levees, berms, and flood walls to stop floodwater from entering the building (if permitted by local building codes).
    • Seal walls in basements with waterproofing compounds to avoid seepage through cracks.
  • Use sandbags when flooding is expected:
    • It takes two people about one hour to fill and place 100 sandbags, creating a wall one foot high and 20 feet long.
    • Make sure you have enough sand, burlap or plastic bags, shovels, strong helpers, and time to place them properly.
    • If a flood is expected, some communities will offer free sandbags to residents. Be sure to watch or listen to the news so you can access these resources.

Remember: standard homeowners’ insurance doesn’t cover flooding but flood insurance does. Get information at www.FloodSmart.gov.

How to Clean Up Smoke Damage After a Fire

3/3/2020 (Permalink)

The worst part of most house fires isn’t necessarily the damage from the actual fire but the damage caused by the smoke and soot of the fire. Most house fires that are contained and put out quickly leave little to no damage. If the fire is in the oven or on the cooktop, the flames may cause damage to the oven, hood, and back wall. If replacing the oven or cleaning up the oven was the only thing needed, that wouldn’t be so bad. Unfortunately, it’s the smoke from the fire that can quickly spread that can leave lasting damage if not cleaned up properly. 

In this blog, we will go over some tips to clean up “minor” smoke damage after a fire. We use the word “minor” because smoke damage can quickly turn into a much bigger problem as it spreads quickly. The other problem is that the homeowner may exacerbate the smoke damage by using the wrong cleaning supplies and chemicals. This leads us to the first tip.

Assess the Smoke Damage Before Cleaning

Once the fire has been safely put out, check the area for smoke damage. If you see that the smoke has gone up the walls and to the ceiling, it is usually best to call a professional to clean up. The reason is that it can be difficult to remove smoke from porous ceilings and walls. Also, if the smoke is visible on the ceiling and walls, there’s a good chance that it has been carried elsewhere. Fire damage restoration professionals will know where to look and how to clean the smoke damage. Also, smoke can easily slip behind appliances, through cracks, and other hard to reach areas which if not cleaned could leave that the smell of smoke lingering behind. 

Air Out the Room

If you experienced a small kitchen fire, open the nearest window and/or door to let fresh air in. This will allow any airborne soot or smoke to hopefully blow out of the house. It’s also a good idea to turn off your central air or heat so the smoke isn’t sucked up into your air ducts. Once the smoke has dissipated and you’ve gotten plenty of fresh air circulating through the area, you can turn back on your central air or heat. It is, however, a good idea to check your air filter on your furnace and change it out if you smell any smoke from it. Another good idea is to use box fans to push the air out through your open windows and/or doors.

Clean Up the Fire Extinguisher Residue

If you use a fire extinguisher to put out the fire, you most likely used the common ABC dry powder fire extinguisher. It’s important to clean up the dry powder from any appliances or metals as the powder can be corrosive over time. A simple wet rag can remove the powder from any surfaces like an oven, sink, or refrigerator. Also, with small kitchen fires, the powder probably spread further than the actual smoke damage, so you want to be thorough in examining all of the surfaces and areas around where the fire occurred.

Vacuum Up Any Fire and Soot Debris First

Before using towels and cleansers to wipe the surfaces, you will want to use a vacuum to remove any loose debris or soot from the damaged area. The debris could scratch surfaces like cooktops if using a towel to wipe the surface. Use the brush attachment of your vacuum to lightly dislodge any debris so the vacuum can suck it up. You make also want to use a broom to sweep up any debris but be careful not to use too much force as you could scratch the surfaces or make the stains worse. 

Don’t Use Liquid Cleaners Just Yet

This is where most people would tend to grab a towel and a liquid cleaner to remove the smoke from the walls, ceiling, and other surfaces. Doing this usually makes the damage worse and harder to clean up. Using liquid cleaners and a towel at this stage can sometimes smear the smoke stains or push them deeper into the surfaces especially walls and ceilings. To get most of the soot and smoke off surfaces, you need to use a dry chemical sponge. This is a special type of sponge that is impregnated with chemicals that are designed to remove soot and smoke. By gently wiping the surface, the sponge absorbs and/or picks up the soot and smoke from the surface. If the smoke damage is minimal, this can be an easy task but if there is extensive smoke damage, this can be an enormous project that is usually best left to the professionals. 

Next, Wash the Surfaces with Professional Cleansers

Once you’ve removed most of the smoke and soot from the surfaces with the dry chemical sponge, you’ll then want to use professional cleansers and a towel to wipe down the surfaces. Some of the different cleaners that people use are commercial soot/smoke cleaner, white vinegar, dish soap, and trisodium phosphate (TSP). A professional smoke damage restoration company will know better what cleaners to use and when. Some cleaners may remove the smoke and soot stains but leave the smell behind. Some may kill the smell with natural, biologically activated enzymes but not remove the stains.  

The Best Step to Take is Call the Professionals

Removing the stains and smells from smoke and soot is not a simple and easy process. We just went over some steps that may work for smooth surfaces but what if the smoke gets into fabrics or furniture? That is why it is usually best to call the professionals to handle the cleanup and restoration of fire and smoke damage. Fire damage restoration experts, like those at SERVPRO of Gainesville, have the knowledge, expertise, tools, cleaning agents, and equipment to effectively remove all the stains and odors and damage from a home fire. Contact us 24/7 when the next time disaster strikes at your home or business, 770-536-1010. 

Spring Cleaning!

3/2/2020 (Permalink)

Warmer Weather is Near!

Time for Spring Cleaning!

Let us help! Call us today (770) 536-1010 for help with:

  • Duct Cleaning - improve your home's air quality and reduce dust circulation through your HVAC system and home.
  • Carpet Cleaning - help increase the life of your carpet and reduce future cleanings with a deep restorative cleaning and top it off with a stain and soil protectant.
  • Upholstery Cleaning - give your furniture a refreshing look with a deep clean and stain extraction.
  • Rug Cleaning - remove stains and odors from your rugs to improve appearance.

SERVPRO of Gainesville looks forward to hearing from you soon to assist in your spring cleaning needs!

The Importance of Immediate Restoration After A Fire

3/2/2020 (Permalink)

Dealing with the aftermath of a fire in your business is overwhelming and stressful. Getting production back on track, employees back to work and making decisions on rebuild are all priorities to any facility manager. Starting the fire restoration process should be immediate. For one, the sooner you start the sooner you can get your work life back to normal. The longer you wait the bigger the risk of long-term issues developing. Smoke damage can also cause irreversible repairs and health issues if not dealt with quick enough. SERVPRO of Gainesville can help with all of this!

Start the Cleanup

While you are still going to need to contact a professional restoration company (SERVPRO of Gainesville) to clean up after a fire, there are a few things you can do on your own. Of course, make sure that it is safe to enter the facility before attempting any cleanup on your own. Even if it is safe, make sure to wear proper clothing, like gloves, long sleeve shirts, and a mask to keep from exposing yourself to soot. Make sure to open all windows first thing. It is key to getting the polluted air out of your business. Of course, we will come in with industrial equipment to get rid of unsafe air.

Caring for your belongings: After opening the windows, make sure to scrub what you can with soap and water. This includes counters, cabinets, tables, and other surfaces. After scrubbing down surfaces, you can start to wash clothes and anything else that can be machine-washed. Keep in mind, more delicate items should be sent to a dry cleaner, and anything you wash at home may need more than one cycle to get the odor out.

What We Do

SERVPRO of Gainesville will come with industrial equipment to clean up fire and smoke damage. Doing what you can to clean your home can help speed up the process. Just make sure that it is safe enough to enter the structure for cleaning, and always wear protective clothes. Even if you do not see any evidence of smoke damage, make sure to wear a mask anyway. Smoke damage may not appear for up to a few days, but it can be extremely harmful to your health. After cleaning what you can, make sure to call a professional to come and restore the damage.

SERVPRO of Gainesville provides 24/7 emergency services and is a trusted vendor. Many insurance companies actually prefer them for cleaning up fire damage. They have the training, experience, and equipment to clean your house from top to bottom. In doing so, they will bring your home back to normal and get you back in your house in no time. With over 1,700 franchises across the nation SERVPRO is able to help hundreds of thousands of people. If your business was struck with a fire, be sure to call SERVPRO of Gainesville at 770-536-1010.

Tips for finding a leak in your bathroom

2/7/2020 (Permalink)

Bathroom, supply line, damaged pipe, toilet, tools Determining the cause of loss in a bathroom can sometimes be a challenge. When the repairs are complete call SERVPRO of Gainesville.

A leak in your shower or bathtub can cause water damage, which is why it needs to be addressed as soon as possible. Before the problem can be taken care of, however, you must be able to identify the source of the leak. Here are some tips to help you find a shower or bathtub leak in your Gainesville, Georgia home.

Inspect the Shower/Bathtub

First, you need to determine where exactly the leak is coming from. If you are inspecting a shower, you should start by looking at the shower pan, or the base of the shower. Indications of a shower pan leak include:

  • Water seeping through ceiling of room below shower
  • Mold near shower pan 
  • Missing grout around shower pan
  • Rotting gaps between wall and floor caused by water damage

These signs of leaking can help you get a better idea of the source of the problem and identify any water damage.

Look for Other Sources

If the leak isn’t coming from your shower pan, look for any other parts of your shower or bathtub where it may have originated. Dripping faucets or showerheads are common sources of a bathtub leak and are relatively easy to fix. When inspecting your bathtub or shower, make sure you are aware of the severity of the issue so that you are prepared to take care of it.

Check for Water Damage

If you’re still struggling to find the leak, keep an eye out for any signs of water damage. Water damage can help give you a clearer idea of where the leak is. If you do come across any signs of damage, make sure to address it while it’s still early in order to mitigate the effects that it can have on your home.

A leak in your bathtub or shower can be frustrating to deal with but keeping the resulting water damage under control can ease the situation. Be sure to talk with a water damage specialist to restore damage from a shower or bathtub leak and help preserve the state of your home.

Fire at your Gainesville, Georgia Business

2/7/2020 (Permalink)

firemen, ladder, balcony, smoke, fire If you've had a fire at in your business call SERVPRO of Gainesville

When a fire breaks out in your place of business, cleaning up afterward can be a challenge, even if the fire did not impact every part of the building. Smoke damage, water damage, discoloration of walls and floors and a lingering smell of smoke might all be problems you face after a fire. If you are currently dealing with the aftermath of a fire at your business, there are a few important steps to take that may help you get back to operational status faster. 

Talk to the Fire Department 

Once the fire is extinguished, you can approach the firefighters and ask a few important questions. While they might not be able to answer all your questions, you can make several inquiries, such as: 

• What started the fire
• Which parts of the building were affected
• Who to contact to get a copy of the fire department’s report 

Knowing as much as you can once the fire is contained or extinguished can help you plan cleanup efforts with more efficiency. 

Inspect the Building 

Work with your insurance company to take stock of soot damage, water damage from fire hoses and how many rooms were affected by flames. Inspecting the building can help you gauge how much it may cost to fix and whether any rooms have safety issues because of the fire. Remember to include interior walls, windows and doors in the inspection. 

Removing Smoke Odors 

Once fire damage is cleaned up, smoke damage may cause unpleasant odors to linger. Your fire damage checklist should include contacting a restoration company who specializes in removing these odors. These professionals have access to machines and cleansers that can clean the air and deodorize your building. Getting rid of smoke odors can be challenging and calling in a professional at the outset can ensure the odors are neutralized permanently. 

After a fire, your Gainesville, GA business may be affected in many ways. However, taking action such as calling for professional smoke damage repair and staying on top of insurance reports can help you get your company up and running again.

What Should Be Discarded After A Fire?

2/5/2020 (Permalink)

Kitchen, fire damage, counter top, microwave oven, sink, dishes If you've had a fire and are unsure what to keep and what can be cleaned, call SERVPRO of Gainesville

Food

Food that has been damaged by heat, smoke, water, toxic fumes or chemicals is not safe to use. Exercise caution and discard if in doubt. It’s recommended to throw away these items:

Fresh food, such as produce, meat, poultry, cheese, eggs and milk
Food in cardboard boxes or foil wrap
Food in canisters, such as spices, flour, and seasonings
Canned food
Any open packages of food

Check your refrigerator to see if it was able to keep your food cold and if soot was able to penetrate it. If your fridge was turned off for more than four hours or if you can detect soot, discard all food. Frozen food can be safe to use if it still has crystals on it; however, the safe bet is to toss it.

Medicine and Cosmetics

Inspect medicines and cosmetics that were near high heat for soot, dust, chemicals and signs of damage. If anything is warped due to the exposure to heat, don’t even think about keeping it. You’re on the safe side if you simply get rid of all medicine and cosmetic items. 

Clothes and Textiles

Some of your clothes and textiles might be able to be cleaned and disinfected by an experienced fire restoration company that has the proper tools and knowledge. Anything that is burnt needs to be thrown away, though. Baby and children’s clothing need some extra care and attention as you don’t want to risk your little one’s health. 

Exercise caution with the items mentioned above. It might be smart to just throw away food, medicine and cosmetics for the sake of your health. Always bear in mind that high heat and fire damage are dangerous, and even if any of these items seem to be in good condition, your eyes might be tricking you.

Call SERVPRO of Gainesville for more information on restoring your home after fire damage, 770-536-1010.

Odors and deodorization

2/5/2020 (Permalink)

Air scrubber, layflat ducting, vinyl flooring, room, drywall, brick If you have odor from a fire or any another source call SERVPRO of Gainesville, we will help you remove the odor.

Destroy Odor with Deodorization

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

With technicians certified by the Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration (IICRC), SERVPRO of Gainesville professionals provide specialized services that can rid your home or business of offensive odors left by fire or smoke damage. SERVPRO of Gainesville does not cover up lingering odors with a fragrance. We seek out and remove the source of the odor. Once the source is found, odor can be removed by using equipment such as air scrubbers or ozone machine and SERVPRO's own proprietary line of professional cleaning products is used to treat and prevent the odor from returning. Any restorable items in affected areas will also be professionally cleaned and deodorized, including furniture, electronics, art, flooring, walls, ceilings, HVAC air ducts, draperies and upholstery, and more. 

Other odors that may require deodorization:

  • Cigarette Smoke
  • Pet Odors
  • Decomposition
  • Mold

Ask your highly trained SERVPRO of Gainesville technician to explain the various deodorization methods available and which will work best for you.

If you or one of your customers suffer a fire damage or some other accident that require deodorization services, contact SERVPRO of Gainesville your trusted locally owned restoration company. Whether it's fire, water or mold damage or just a stubborn odor that refuses to go away, we'll help make it "Like it never even happened."

Generator Safety

1/9/2020 (Permalink)

Generator, plugged in, outside, garage, driveway When you have a power outage, be sure to review the safety guidelines before using a generator.

When the Power is Out, the Generator Should Stay Out as Well

When the lights start to flicker one's first instinct is to grab the flashlights to be ready if the power goes out.

There is a large number of homeowners and businesses that own generators that can keep the vital systems in a home or building running.

The generators, which run on gas, exhaust fumes very similar to your automobile.  Making sure these fumes don't come back into your home is extremely important.

Generators should be placed Outside in order to exhaust the fumes out into the open.  Even putting the generator in the garage is not safe practice, the generator should be outside of the home and venting away from any fresh air inlet.

When the power goes off and your property sustains property damage, call SERVPRO of Gainesville to do your repairs and mitigate the damage.

Why SERVPRO? 

Faster Response

Since we are locally owned and operated, we are able to respond quicker with the right resources, which is extremely important. A fast response lessens the damage, limits further damage, and reduces the restoration cost.

Resources to Handle Floods and Storms

When storms hit Gainesville, we can scale our resources to handle a large storm or flooding disaster. We can access equipment and personnel from a network of 1700 Franchises across the country and elite Disaster Recovery Teams that are strategically located throughout the United States.

Have Storm or Flood Damage? Call Us Today 770-536-1010

Fires - Assessing the Damage to Properly Mitigate

1/6/2020 (Permalink)

ceiling, sponge cleaned, ceiling fan, windows If you have a fire call SERVPRO of Gainesville to determine the extent of the damage

When a fire starts inside your home, it is never a pleasant experience. Fires not only threaten the safety of you and your family but can also be costly to repair. The heat, flames, and smoke produced by a fire can cause extensive damage to your home. 
 
Whether the fire is small or large, the best choice would be to have the professionals come in and assess the situation. SERVPRO of Gainesville is IICRC certified and have experience with different types of fire scenarios. 
 
Both the heat and smoke created by a blaze causes several types of damage to your home. Flames can burn content and building materials inside the home. Smoke spreads throughout the structure leaving behind soot and foul odors. Our professional technicians at SERVPRO of Gainesville are taught how to mitigate fire damage by putting each case into a category based on the severity of the damage. 
  
No matter how severe the damage is in your home after a fire, hiring professionals can always get you the best results. SERVPRO of Gainesville can be reached at (770) 536-1010, available 24 hours a day and seven days a week to help 

The Mold Remediation Process

1/6/2020 (Permalink)

Air scrubber, containment, scaffolding If you have mold in your home or business call SERVPRO of Gainesville

The Mold Remediation Process

When mold is not visible, SERVPRO recommends hiring a hygienist to perform an air quality test to properly determine the affected areas in the home or business. But when the mold has spread more than 10 square feet then there is a process that begins towards addressing it properly and efficiently:

  • Assessment-Your property will be carefully inspected for signs of mold and the water sources possibly causing it. Mold feeds on cellulose and water and can be hidden from plain view.
  • Containment- Different containment procedures will be placed to prevent the spread of mold, like physical barriers and negative air pressure to keep the mold spores from spreading during the cleanup process. 
  • Air Filtration- Specialized filtration equipment captures microscopic mold spores out of the air. SERVPRO technicians use air scrubbers and HEPA vacuums to prevent the spread of these mold spores while the mold remediation is in progress. 
  • Removing- The process of mold remediation depends on the amount of mold growth and the type of surface it's on. Antimicrobial treatments will be used to eliminate mold colonies and help prevent new ones from forming. Removing and disposing of mold-infested porous materials, like drywall and flooring, may be necessary.
  • Cleaning- SERVPRO cleans your furniture, decorative items, and other restorable items affected by mold. We use a variety of cleaning techniques to clean and sanitize your belongings. 
  • Restoration- Depending on the level of mold damage, some building materials may have to be removed. Restoration may involve minor repairs or major repairs.

Have you completed an Emergency Ready Profile for your Business?

1/2/2020 (Permalink)

Servpro logo, Emergency Ready Profile, checkmark Have you completed your Emergency Ready Profile for your business with SERVPRO?

The Best Way to Reduce Business Interruption Following a Disaster is to Plan For it NOW.

As many as 50% of businesses may never recover following a disaster, according to the latest industry research. Of the businesses that 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. 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.

The SERVPRO® Emergency READY Profile Advantages:

  • A no cost assessment of your facility. – This means there is no need to allocate funds, giving you a great value at no cost.
  • A concise Profile Document that contains only the critical information needed in the event of an emergency. – It will only take a little time to complete and will not take you away from current projects. But it will save a lot of time if ever needed.
  • A guide to help you get back into your building following a disaster. – This can help minimize the amount of time your business is inactive by having an immediate plan of action.
  • Establishes your local SERVPRO® Franchise Professional as your disaster mitigation and restoration provider. – You have a provider that is recognized as an industry leader and close by.
  • Identification of the line of command for authorizing work to begin. – This saves time so we can begin the work of mitigating the damage which can save you time and money.
  • Provides facility details such as shut-off valve locations, priority areas and priority contact information. – Having a quick reference of what to do, how to do it and who to call provides solutions in advance of an emergency so that during the emergency you are “Ready for whatever happens.”

Call SERVPRO of Gainesville today, (770) 536-1010, to get started!

Common Causes of Water Damage

1/2/2020 (Permalink)

Hands holding water line; broken water line; wood flooring; wooden cabinets A small hole in a water line can cause extensive water damage in your home.

Water damage in the home, especially damage that is not identified, can cause serious issues to the home’s structure and even to you and your family’s health. Unfortunately, far too many homeowners are unaware of some of the most common causes of water damage and are therefore not prepared to prevent it in the first place. While some water damage is unavoidable, being educated on typical sources for water issues will make you more prepared to identify a problem and handle it before it becomes both costly and destructive to your home.

Residential water damage is extremely common, especially in homes throughout the Hall County, Gainesville, Georgia area. Understanding potential sources of water issues is the first step to prevention. The following are some of the most common causes of water damage:

  1. Washing machine supply lines pressure
  2. Dripping toilet
  3. Busted or leaking pipes
  4. Sewer lines backup
  5. Gutters
  6. Water buildup in crawl spaces
  7. HVAC problems
  8. Malfunctioning appliance like dishwasher, sink, refrigerator, etc.
  9. Heavy rains or major storms

While the above causes are the most commonly seen challenges for homeowners, there are a variety of additional causes of water damage. Being proactive is the best way to save money and maintain your home’s interior and exterior in optimal condition. If you believe that your home has suffered from water damage, our team of SERVPRO water damage restoration experts is here to help. Call us today to learn more!

Don't Underestimate Water Damage

12/6/2019 (Permalink)

wet carpet, water saturated carpet, foot prints Don't underestimate the amount of damage that can be caused in your home.

Don’t underestimate water damage in your Hall County home

The amount of damage water can cause is amazing and often underestimated by homeowners. Excess moisture is bad enough, but when a home is flooded or hit with a plumbing disaster (like a busted pipe), the situation can quickly get out of hand. There’s a reason why these incidents are among the most expensive problems a homeowner can face. 

Floods, sewage back flows, and other sources of contaminated fluid usually cause the worst damage.  Water can be filled with all kinds of deadly substances, ranging from chemical residues to animal feces to parasites. Bacteria, viruses and fungi grow in an alarming rate in contaminated fluid, and severe health risks can be caused by these contaminants.

This problem is compounded by the composition of most homes, which are filled with organic materials. Drywall, wood and the matter that is trapped in carpet fibers are just a few examples, and they can give pathogens room to grow. Within 48 hours, mold may begin creeping behind the walls and releasing spores, and any organic materials that have been soaked through by contaminated fluid will usually have to be destroyed.

SERVPRO of Gainesville will dry the home quickly and apply antibacterial, antiviral, and anti-fungal agents to all surfaces that had contact with the water. This ensures the family can return to a safe home.

Chimney Tips to Keep Your Family Warm...and Safe

12/5/2019 (Permalink)

Living room, fireplace Regular maintenance on your fireplace can keep you and your family safe this winter.

What causes chimney fires?

The build-up of creosote along the chimney lining walls can facilitate the start of a chimney fire. All fires create soot and residue build-up, especially wood burning fireplaces and stoves. This build-up is caused by the unburned materials in the smoke accumulating along the chimney walls and creating a sticky substance that can easily catch fire. The smoke from the fire contains a substance similar to tar and when the temperatures within the chimney are below 250 degrees Fahrenheit, the substance will condense along the chimney surface. When the temperature drops below 150 degrees Fahrenheit, the substance turns into a dark, sticky substance that is also highly flammable.

A chimney that is dirty, blocked or is in disrepair can inhibit proper venting of smoke up the flue and can also cause a chimney fire. Nearly all residential fires originating in the chimney are preventable.

Maintenance - Good maintenance is a very important step in preventing chimney fires!

  • Have your chimney checked annually by a qualified chimney professional.
  • Burn only well-seasoned hardwoods.
  • Start fires with clean newspaper or dry kindling – Gasoline or kerosene should never be used to start a fire.
  • Never burn cardboard boxes, wrapping paper or your Christmas tree.
  • Keep the area in front of the fireplace clear of paper and debris. It can be tempting during the holidays to place decorations close to the fireplace but keep them at a safe distance.
  • If your fireplace doesn't have a glass door, use a wire mesh screen.
  • Install a chimney cap.
  • Install a carbon monoxide detector.
  • Have your chimney sweep ensure that your chimney has an appropriate liner.
  • Following a violent storm, earthquake, flood or lightning strike, have your chimney inspected for damage - inside and out.

Prevention - Remember prevention is your best defense against fire. If you have a wood or coal stove, be sure it is installed at least 36 inches away from the wall. Keep combustible materials well away from the stove and chimney connector. Place an approved stove board under the unit to protect the floor from heat and hot coals which might drop out.

Severe Weather - Be Prepared

12/5/2019 (Permalink)

Tornado, open field, storm Severe weather can happen anytime, anywhere, are you and your family prepared?

Severe weather can happen anytime, anywhere. Each year, Americans cope with an average of:

  • 10,000 severe thunderstorms
  • 5,000 floods or flash floods
  • 1,000 tornadoes
  • 2 land falling deadly hurricanes

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

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

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

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

Build an Emergency Supply Kit:

  • Water (one gallon per person per day)
  • Food (non-perishable 3-day supply)
  • Manual can opener
  • Battery operated radio, preferably a NOAA Weather Radio
  • Flashlight and extra batteries
  • First aid kit
  • Whistle to signal for help
  • Clothing
  • Dust masks or bandanas
  • Plastic sheeting, garbage bags and duct tape
  • Wrench or pliers to turn off utilities
  • Hygiene items
  • Important documents; copies of insurance policies, identification and bank account information
  • Cash
  • Fire extinguisher
  • Matches in a waterproof container

NOTE:  Statistics gathered from www.stormready.noaa.gov

Are you prepared for a flood at your business?

12/4/2019 (Permalink)

water on floor, hoses, filing cabinets, water damage Is your business prepared if you have water damage?

Are you prepared if your commercial property experiences a flood?

As a business owner, you must protect your property. You likely have insurance that covers you in case of theft, fire or other serious property damage, but not all policies cover flood damage. Even if you don't live in an area prone to flooding, one burst pipe is all it takes to create a big problem. 

Have Digital Backups of Any Paper Files

No matter how well you prepare, your paper files are at risk if storm damage is a possibility. If you don't already have digital copies of your important paperwork, now is the time to create these backups. Doing so can save you days' worth of headaches during the restoration process.

- Property deeds
- Insurance policies
- Inventory lists
- Employee information
- Company handbooks and policies
- Client or customer information

Create Sandbags to Protect Your Building

Placing sandbags at the doors and windows can protect your property from up to two feet of storm water. After filling each bag with sand, fold the top over and place the bag with the folded top down. Create one layer at a time, and limit their placement to three layers, unless you intend to create a pyramid or are leaning the bags against doors and windows. Remember, sandbags are a temporary solution and aren't likely to protect the building from larger floods.

Move What You Can

Consider your furniture and whether you have higher ground in your building. If you have a second story, move as much furniture and equipment to the higher floor as possible. If you have enough notice and a second property that is on higher ground, consider moving furniture and equipment to a new building entirely.

While you aren't likely to get away from flooding with no damage at all, following these steps will help you protect much of your property. Less time spent cleaning up means more time getting back into the swing of doing business.

Document Restoration

12/4/2019 (Permalink)

Filing boxes, shelves, filing cabinet, water damaged floor If you have water damage to documents we can help dry and restore the documents.

In the aftermath of disaster, some of your most valued contents—documents, photographs, and books—could be lost forever. As a leader in the restoration industry, SERVPRO knows that timely mitigation is the key to recovering damaged possessions. With years of experience and state-of-the-art technology, SERVPRO’s restoration professionals will help you recover your paper goods before it is too late.

Our Document Restoration Facility:

  • Innovative: we use the latest vacuum freeze-drying method, as well as gamma irradiation technology for sterilizing
  • Secure: managed by HIPPA Master-certified technicians, under 24/7 surveillance
  • Digital: we use a computerized inventory system for digitizing your documents
  • Flexible capacity - we can accommodate large commercial losses or small residential jobs
  • Full Service: we offer a range of services including drying, cleaning/disinfecting, re-jacketing, digitizing, and deodorization

Our Technology

The SERVPRO document restoration team uses innovate vacuum freeze-drying techniques; in fact, we use the same freeze-drying methods used by the Library of Congress to dry valuable historic documents and books. Our vacuum freeze-drying process is the only method approved by the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) and the General Services Administration (GSA).

Types of content:

  • paper documents
  • books and magazines
  • manuscripts and files
  • photographs, films, negatives, and microfiche
  • x-rays
  • blueprints and maps
  • parchment

Document Cleaning and Disinfecting

In many water damage situations, like sewage or flood water, documents will be exposed to bacteria, viruses, pesticides, or other harmful chemicals. Our team uses a gamma irradiation process to safely and effectively sterilize your documents.

Digitizing Services

In the digital age, converting your paper files and photos to digital formats can have an invaluable impact on your business or home. With the help of SERVPRO’s restoration professionals to digitize your documents, you can save storage space and have access to your records at the touch of a button. And perhaps most important of all, you’ll have digital copies of your valuable documents that can’t be lost in a flood or fire.

Need your valuable documents restored? Call SERVPRO of Gainesville 770-536-1010

Commercial Carpet Cleaning

11/6/2019 (Permalink)

Cleaned carpet, air mover SERVPRO of Gainesville is here for your commercial carpet cleaning needs

Commercial carpets can be considered a big investment.  The heavy-duty carpets are designed to endure, but with excessive foot traffic, properly taking care of them often is necessary. SERVPRO of Gainesville is well equipped to assist with the upkeep of your carpet cleaning needs. Besides vacuuming the carpet regularly, your commercial carpet should also be deep cleaned to extend its life and to keep it looking well-kept and professional.

A clean, healthy carpet helps set the first impression your customers have when they walk into your business and should provide a clean and safe environment for your employees.  Carpets are also the place where a lot of airborne particles and other dirt gather over time.  Besides aesthetics, keeping a clean carpet also helps provide healthy indoor air quality.

How Often Should My Carpet Be Cleaned?

Different environments can have several different effects on your commercial carpet.  We typically notice that commercial carpets may need to be considered for cleaning no less than twice a year.  However, if you notice a buildup of dirt on your floors, it’s time to schedule a cleaning.  Every business is different.

Schedule an Appointment

Call SERVPRO of Gainesville (770) 536-1010

Five Ways to Avoid Kitchen Hazards

11/6/2019 (Permalink)

Kitchen, smoke and fire damage Don't let a disaster in your kitchen ruin your holiday.

Many people in Gainesville and Hall County love to cook, especially as the holidays approach. But even seasoned chefs sometimes make costly mistakes. Here are five helpful ways to avoid kitchen hazards such as a drain clog or grease fire.

1. Keep Your Vents Clean

It’s important to keep the vent screens above your stove clean. Otherwise grease can build up on the screen and inhibit the ventilation becoming a contributing factor in a kitchen fire. The grease build-up could even make a fire worse. 

2. Don’t Leave Pans Unattended

Most cooks know never to leave a pan unattended on the stove. The pan could be knocked over, grease can splatter, or the food can be allowed to cook too long. Each of these things can be a fire hazard.

3. Don’t Put Grease Down the Drain

When you're done cooking it may be tempting to pour the hot grease down the drain. Built up grease in drain can lead to a drain clog and sink overflow. Instead the grease can be poured into a container, allowed to cool and then placed in the trash.

4. Wipe Out Greasy Pans Before Washing

Wipe out any remaining grease and food particles before washing your pans. This can help prevent buildup that may lead to a sink clog.

5. Call a Professional to Service Appliances

If you’re having problems with your stove or drain it may be time to call a professional. They will know how to fix the problem without causing a potential electrical fire. These can come from attempting to fix a broken stove or clogged dish disposal without the correct tools. If fire or flooding does occur, then a fire and water damage restoration service may be able to help.

Following these tips can help you prevent problems like a drain clog or grease fire. Never leave your stove unattended when it’s on, don’t put grease down the drain, and call a professional if your kitchen appliances need maintenance. In the event a fire or flooding does happen in your kitchen, then a restoration professional may be able to help.

Let's Talk Turkey

11/5/2019 (Permalink)

cartoon, turkey, pizza If you're frying a turkey this Thanksgiving please follow the safely tips and don't become a victim of fire damage.

Turkey Day (aka - Thanksgiving) is right around the corner and it is that time of the year again when family and friends come together for a feast. There are several ways to cook a turkey, but a favorite among some is deep fried. Unfortunately, we have all seen the videos that end in a fiery ball of poultry. If you plan on deep frying a turkey this year, please keep the following tips in mind. 

  • Thaw and Dry turkey completely before cooking.
    • Thaw the turkey in the refrigerator approximately 24 hours for every 5 pounds, according to The National Turkey Federation (http://www.eatturkey.com)
    • Ice or water that mixes can cause flare-ups
  • Fryer Setup
    • Use fryer OUTDOORS and away from decks, garages, home, and other structures.
    • Keep children and pets away from the fryer. 
    • Use on a flat surface to avoid accidental tipping. Make sure the tank and burner are at least 2+ feet apart.
  • Measure the Oil
    • Avoid overfilling by reading the manufacturer’s instructions. 
  • Be Prepared (SAFETY FIRST!)
    • Use oven mitts to protect hands and/or arms.
    • Safety goggles to protect eyes
    • Have a grease-rated fire extinguisher nearby and ready.
  • Finishing Act
    • Remove pot from burner and place on a level surface.
    • Allow oil to cool overnight before disposing of oil in a sealed container.

Most importantly, NEVER LEAVE FRYERS UNATTENDED!! Please be careful this holiday season and share these tips with your friends and family that enjoy fried turkey.

If you do become a victim of a deep-fryer fire, SERVPRO Gainesville is here to help. We are available 24/7/365 days a year at 770-536-1010.

SERVPRO Gainesville would like everyone to have a safe holiday season with their family and friends.

Quick Response When Storm Damages Occur

11/5/2019 (Permalink)

House, tree on house, storm damage If you have storm damage at your house call SERVPRO of Gainesville.

When heavy rains and high winds hit hard, property destruction and loss can be devastating to you as a homeowner. Structural damage to the exterior of your home is followed by interior devastation from water and winds. Storm damage is rarely isolated to just a few buildings in an area adding the challenge of finding a restoration company that can respond swiftly to your needs to an already anxiety provoking situation. SERVPRO delivers the help you need swiftly even when a local disaster is widespread as we are able to call upon a network of over 1,700 franchises nationwide to respond if the need is great.
 
Storm damage in Gainesville can feel overwhelming, but your fear and panic will disappear when our team of professionals responds to your water, wind and flooding repair and restoration needs. Your particular situation is of paramount importance to us, and you need not worry that your repairs and restoration will take a back seat even when many in your area are struggling to recover from the same issues you face. Choosing our company puts in motion a vast support system, but our local ownership means you will receive a personalized approach to your particular situation, efficiently returning your home back to its pre-storm condition just “like it never even happened.”
 
Placing your trust in SERVPRO for your storm damage needs will reap you benefits that less qualified companies simply cannot deliver. We use state of the art equipment to clean, repair and restore your home and in the process, we also restore your and your family’s peace of mind. Our technicians are highly trained and qualified, current in Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IIICRC) for any procedure needed to bring your home back to the comfortable and comforting refuge you deserve. We also work closely with your insurance company, ensuring that all the work necessary is approved and compensated according to the terms of your policy. Our high standards and relentless drive to do the job on time while meeting local specifications means you and your family will quickly return to the quiet enjoyment of your house and neighborhood. We are not satisfied until you are happily back in your restored dwelling.
 
Once you make sure that your family is safe after a major storm, your first call should be to SERVPRO of Gainesville at (770) 536-1010 24/7 and begin the road to recovery by scheduling an inspection with our storm damage experts.

The Science of Drying

11/1/2019 (Permalink)

banquet room, containment, plastic, dehumidifiers Containment is often used to reduce the size of the drying chamber to focus our drying efforts as it was on this commercial loss.

Did you know there is a science behind the process of drying? Having this knowledge is essential to restoring a water-damaged structure to its preloss condition. While your initial reaction may be to grab a few towels to mop up the mess and place a fan or two around the damaged area, SERVPRO of Gainesville Professionals are trained in the science of drying and follow strict industry approved standards to help lower the chances of any secondary damage. If your home or business suffers from water damage, our team will:

  1. Inspect the building to detect every component that is wet to help prevent secondary damage from happening.
  2. Measure how much moisture is in wet materials and monitor whether the materials are drying properly.
  3. Speed up Mother Nature by using professional drying equipment.

What exactly does it mean to help “speed up Mother Nature”? A wet building can often dry naturally because the environment always seeks equilibrium. When materials are wet, moisture will naturally move to drier air at the surface of the material–but only if the air is, indeed, drier.

The only problem is, nature often takes too long and secondary damages may occur while the building is drying out.

SERVPRO of Gainesville has the tools and equipment to help Mother Nature along, including equipment to help dry hardwood floors, tough-to-reach spaces inside walls, and much more. Our technicians also use state-of-the-art monitoring equipment and a proven scientific process to help speed the drying of your home or business.

SERVPRO of Gainesville has the training and equipment to help make water damage “Like it never even happened.” If your home or business has water damage, give us a call today at 770-536-1010.

Don't Wait, call SERVPRO of Gainesville today

11/1/2019 (Permalink)

Concrete floors, water damage, wet walls When you've had water damage like this Gainesville family did, it is important to act quickly to avoid any secondary damages.

We all get very busy with our day-to-day schedules and water damage can really put a wrench in your plans. As inconvenient and time consuming as it may be, leaving water damage for even 1 day can make things significantly worse.

Within Minutes water will spread throughout your property soaking into drywall, upholstery and other belongings. 

Within the first 24 hours drywall will spread and break, metal surfaces begin to tarnish, and a musty odor becomes present.

Within 48 hours to a week mold and mildew grow and spread, paint blisters, wood flooring swells and doors and windows swell and warp.

After 1 week of being untreated, the time and money needed for restoration significantly increase and the home or business may no longer be structurally sound.

If you have water damage in your home or place of business call SERVPRO of Gainesville today 770-536-1010.  

Let SERVPRO walk you through commercial water loss steps

10/28/2019 (Permalink)

water, concrete floor, commercial, water damage If you have water loss in your place of business, call SERVPRO of Gainesville to help

Whenever water spills into your Hall County office or manufacturing facility, it is wise to seek out help from a professional restoration company such as SERVPRO. Our water restoration technicians or WRTs have the best tools at our disposal to conduct prompt commercial water cleanup. However, in many instances, there is much that you and your maintenance and custodial staff can do to keep the problems from getting worse. 

This first step when conducting any commercial water is to find the source of the leak. Once you and your team locate where the moisture is coming from, it is wise to turn off the water in that location. If there is anything that uses electricity in the area that got wet, make sure to turn the power to that region off so that no electrical shorts occur. 

The next step is to determine what kind of water you are dealing with.  If our WRTs at SERVPRO are on site we will then figure out what type of water has leaked out into your office or manufacturing plant. If the water source is a clean water pipe than mitigating the issues will be much easier because the chances of contamination are low. However, if the source of the leak is rainwater, a sink, or sewage line, the chances of contamination get higher, making it a good idea to call in the professionals. 

Once you have determined if the water is clean or not, it is then wise to remove as much of it as possible while it is still liquid before it evaporates into the air or soaks into your contents or building materials. Liquid H20 can be removed much quicker and easier than water vapor or taking moisture out of wet materials. 

To start, first, find any areas of your office or manufacturing building that have standing water. If the water is more than a couple of inches deep, it is best to use a submersible pump to suck up the water and put it into a sewage drain. If there is water sitting on a flat surface such as a tile or concrete floor, then mopping or squeegeeing can be the most effective cleaning method. If carpets inside your manufacturing facility got wet, then it is smart to vacuum up the water using a wet/dry vacuum. 

If you ever notice a water leak inside your office or manufacturing plant in Hall County, it is wise to call in SERVPRO of Gainesville at (770) 536-1010 because We're Faster To Any Size Disaster. 

Preventing Christmas tree fires

10/28/2019 (Permalink)

tree on fire, chair on fire Don't let a dry tree or damaged Christmas lights put your family and home at risk.

We know it’s not even Halloween or Thanksgiving but it’s never too early to start thinking how to safely decorate your home or business for Christmas. 

If you’re putting up a live Christmas tree, here’s a quick check list to review:

  • Get a fresh tree whose needles are green and don't easily fall off
  • Cut 1-2 inches from base of trunk before placing the tree in the stand
  • Place the tree at least 3 feet away from heat sources
  • Add water daily to prevent drying
  • Do not connect together more than three strands of mini-string sets
  • Check holiday lights for frayed wires or excessive water
  • Always turn lights off on a tree before going to bed or leaving your home
  • Get rid of a tree when its needles start dropping
  • Check that your smoke alarm is working properly

SERVPRO Technology

10/25/2019 (Permalink)

Ipad, servpro green We have the technology in our hands to track the progress of your water or fire loss and to help make it "Like it never even happened."

Being a part of a franchise system is truly amazing (as if we don't mention the SERVPRO family enough). Through this system, we have specific resources and tools that help us be consistently follow the SERVPRO system.

Let's start with DryBook! We have a program called DryBook that our technicians use on the job site. Using DryBook on the job all of the paperwork, pictures, and information is captured electronically. This allows our technicians to not have to worry about paper and pen and this will update our office staff real time! This means that the minute that they hit save, our team at our office can pull up that customers file and make sure they have everything that they need to send to the insurance company.

We also have WorkCenter Office. This program helps us track our jobs and ensures that we know the exact duration of the job. In addition, WorkCenter Office maintains a historical point of reference for all jobs once they have been completed and sent to insurance companies for processing.

With the combination of these two programs, DryBook and WorkCenter Office, we can accurately tell a story for the insurance company!

SERVPRO of Gainesville is locally owned and operated, so we’re already close by and ready to respond immediately when you need us. We make disaster "Like it never even happened." Give us a call today at (770)-536-1010.

Drying equipment at SERVPRO of Gainesville

10/25/2019 (Permalink)

box truck, air movers, dehumidifiers When you have water damage, we have the equipment ready to respond.

When water damage has occurred, water can be absorbed into the drywall (sheetrock), baseboards, subflooring, etc. Drying these surfaces requires high-velocity air movers to accelerate the release of absorbed water into the air. Dehumidifiers are necessary for removing this excess moisture to help protect property and create conditions for efficient drying.

TYPES OF AIR MOVERS

There are two types of industrial air movers we use at SERVPRO of Gainesville. Both types vary by direction and speed of airflow:

  • Axial: Axial air movers blow large amounts of air in a wide space. These air movers are usually larger and produces a higher airflow. Axial air movers can only move air horizontally, but they are ideal for drying walls and floors, cooling equipment and ventilation.
  • Centrifugal: Centrifugal air movers are compact models. They draw air from different sources and direct it all to one spot. You might use a centrifugal air mover in hard-to-reach areas such as closets, cabinets and crawl spaces.

TYPES OF DEHUMIDFIERS

There are two types of industrial dehumidifiers we use at SERVPRO of Gainesville. Both types vary by direction and speed of airflow:

  • Refrigeration: Electric refrigeration dehumidifiers are the most common type of dehumidifiers. They work by drawing moist air over a refrigerated evaporator with a fan. The cold evaporator coil of the refrigeration device condenses the water, which is removed, and then the air is reheated by the condenser coil. The now dehumidified, re-warmed air is released into the room. This process works most effectively at higher ambient temperatures with a high dew point, in cold climates, the process is less effective. Highest efficiency is reached above 20 °C (68 °F) and 45% relative humidity.
  • Desiccant: This process uses a special humidity-absorbing material called a desiccant, which is exposed to the air to be conditioned. The humidity-saturated material is then moved to a different location, where it is "recharged" to drive off the humidity, typically by heating it. The desiccant can be mounted on a belt or other means of transporting it during a cycle of operation. Because of the lack of compressor parts desiccant dehumidifiers are often lighter and quieter than compressor dehumidifiers. Desiccant dehumidifiers can also operate at lower temperatures than compressor dehumidifiers as the unit lacks coils which are unable to extract moisture from the air at lower temperatures.

If you’ve had water damage at your home or business call SERVPRO of Gainesville 770-536-1010 for emergency service.

Keep your family safe - make a plan

10/24/2019 (Permalink)

typed paper, emergency plan, pen Make sure you and your family are prepared in the event of an emergency

Disasters happen and they can strike at any time and without warning, be as prepared as you possibly can, make a plan today. Your family may not be together if a disaster strikes, so it is important to know which types of disasters could affect your area.  Know how you’ll contact one another and reconnect if separated. Establish a family meeting place that’s familiar and easy to find.

Step 1: Put together a plan by discussing these four questions with your family, friends, or other members of your household to start your emergency plan.

  1. How will I receive emergency alerts and warnings?
  2. What is my shelter plan?
  3. What is my evacuation route?
  4. What is my family/household communication plan?

Step 2:  Consider specific needs in your household.

As you prepare your plan tailor your plans and supplies to your specific daily living needs and responsibilities. Discuss your needs and responsibilities and how people in the network can assist each other with communication, care of children, business, pets, or specific needs like the operation of durable medical equipment. Create your own personal network for specific areas where you need assistance.  Keep in mind some these factors when developing your plan:

  • Different ages of members within your household
  • Responsibilities for assisting others
  • Locations frequented
  • Dietary needs
  • Medical needs including prescriptions and equipment
  • Disabilities or access and functional needs including devices and equipment
  • Languages spoken
  • Cultural and religious considerations
  • Pets or service animals
  • Households with school-aged children

Step 3: Fill out a Family Emergency Plan

Download and fill out a family emergency plan or use them as a guide to create your own.

Step 4: Practice your plan with your family/household

We answer the phone ready to help

10/24/2019 (Permalink)

Servpro trucks, parking lot, building When water or fire damage occurs it is important to act quickly to avoid secondary damages. SERVPRO of Gainesville is here and ready to help.

SERVPRO of Gainesville is available 24 hours a day for fire, water or storm emergencies, large or small. When you are dealing with damage to your home or business, immediate action is crucial. A delay of just a few hours can greatly increase the severity of the damage to your structure and contents.

We’re available 24/7 Ready to Help
Call Today - (770) 536-1010

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 Gainesville has the specific training and experience to help you through this tough time. We specialize in water and fire damage restoration—in fact, it's the cornerstone of our business.

What to Expect

When you call, we will ask several questions regarding your 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 damage occur?
  • What caused the damage (if known)?
  • Is there electricity available (on-site)?

About SERVPRO of Gainesville

SERVPRO of Gainesville 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.

We're here to help when storms strike

10/23/2019 (Permalink)

tree on house, roof damage, gutter damage When severe weather strikes call SERVPRO of Gainesville - we're faster to any sized disaster.

We’re here to help with Emergency Storm Cleanup in Gainesville and Hall County

Storm Damage Cleanup and Restoration

  • 24 Hours Emergency Service
  • Faster to Any Size Disaster
  • Highly Trained Water Restoration Technicians
  • A Trusted Leader in the Water Restoration Industry
  • Locally Owned and Operated

SERVPRO of Gainesville has experience restoring homes affected by storms and flooding. We can respond immediately with highly trained technicians who employ specialized equipment and techniques to restore your Hall County home or business back to pre-storm condition.

Why Choose SERVPRO of Gainesville?

We're Faster to Any Size Disaster

When a storm hits your Hall County home or business, you need help immediately. Our quick response will help prevent secondary damage and help reduce restoration costs.

We're Highly Trained Storm Damage Specialists

We specialize in flooding and storm damage restoration, the cornerstone of our business. We have extensive water damage and storm restoration training that allows us to get your home back to normal quickly.

  • Water Damage Restoration Technician
  • Applied Structural Drying Technicians

We Have the Resources to Handle any size Storm or and Disaster

Major storms and flooding events can overwhelm many restoration companies. On the other hand, SERVPRO of Gainesville can access resources from 1,700 Franchises across the state and country and even utilize Disaster Recovery Teams for major storms and disasters.

Locally Owned Company with National Storm Resources

SERVPRO of Gainesville is locally owned and operated—so we live and work here too and are proud to be part of the Hall County community.

Call us 24/7 at 770-536-1010.

Are you ready for cold weather?

10/23/2019 (Permalink)

frozen pipes, ice, copper pipes Don't let this happen to you. Prepare your home for cold weather.

It’s time to prepare your home for cold weather - winterize your home before the cold sets in:

  • The main valve - Know where the main water valve is located and confirm it turns easily. Don't wait until an emergency to find out.
  • Pipe insulation - Insulate plumbing in drafty and unheated areas such as garages, outdoors, unfinished basements, and crawlspaces.
  • Faucet drip - Leave a trickle of water running on faucets located on exterior walls to prevent pipes from freezing
  • Open cabinets - Keep vanity doors under sinks open to allow heat inside.
  • Garage door - Keep your garage door closed, when able, to maintain maximum heat.
  • Cap bibs - Place insulation caps on hose bibs.
  • The thermostat - Leave the thermostat set no lower than 55 degrees F.

Should You Replace Your Smoke Detector

10/16/2019 (Permalink)

Smoke detector, green light, ceiling We all know that we need to check the batteries in our smoke detectors but did you know that you may need to replace the smoke detector itself?

It's a great habit to check your smoke detector regularly and to replace the battery in your smoke detector annually.

But did you know that smoke detectors themselves lose their effectiveness over time? The US Fire Administration says that most smoke detectors today have a life span of about 8-10 years. At that point, the entire unit should be replaced. When you replace the unit, write the date purchased on the inside with a sharpie to have on record.

A smoke detector is an essential component of your home's safety equipment and having at least one smoke detector means that your surroundings are safer. That’s great, but you need to take the necessary steps to keep your smoke detector in proper working order and that doesn't necessarily mean doings a whole home smoke detector replacement, but rather checking and replacing their batteries. Generally, your smoke detector will let you know if the battery is low. If your smoke detector keeps chirping or there is a blinking red light you might need to change the battery. The smoke detector red light could also indicate that your system is over 10 years old and needs to be replaced. A hard-wired smoke detector with a red blinking light could indicate that there’s a problem with the wire connection. If you’re not sure it might be a good idea to do a quick search on the internet to find out. 

Do you know how to shut off the water at work?

10/16/2019 (Permalink)

Water damage, ceiling tiles fallen, insulation on floor Quick reaction and shutting off the water supply can prevent extensive damage in your Gainesville place of business.

Many workplaces always call on the boss or the maintenance man when something goes wrong. What if they were home sick, or in a meeting and you need to locate the water shut off, where do you start? 

SERVPRO of Gainesville, Georgia can help commercial property managers in planning for a water, fire, storm damage. How? With a free Emergency Response Profile created by our SERVPRO Marketing Department. 

By having a plan of action and including it in your regular training at your office you can minimize the cost if an unplanned event happens like a frozen pipe, fire or any other type of disaster. 

Some property managers use this as a tool to keep everything organized in one central location. 

Is your business ready for a disaster? Even a simple pipe burst can cause a lot of damage and headache. With a SERVPRO® Emergency READY Profile it can have the critical information to minimize damages, provide the resources for the employees of the company, and provide property details and information. This is a FREE service that we provide to commercial properties. 

Make an appointment today to get started!

If the unthinkable happens, call your local SERVPRO of Gainesville, Georgia at (770) 536-1010 seven days a week 24/7 to help you avoid the cost and hassle of secondary damages.  We will help make it "Like it never even happened."

Fire Prevention Safety Tips For Your Business

10/4/2019 (Permalink)

Fire hose in glass case Follow these important tips to protect your business and employees from fires.

Fire Extinguishers and Business Safety
One way to protect yourself, your employees, and your business from fire is to have proper fire extinguishers handy on the premises. Fire extinguishers can help you eliminate a small fire from spreading into a fire you cannot control.  Once you buy all the necessary extinguishers, perform a training session with all employees on the proper use of the extinguisher and how to check if it is charged. Place them in a highly visible area for quick and easy access. The most common place for extinguishers is break rooms and kitchens.

Smoke Detectors and Fire Alarms
The best protection from a fire is early detection.  Smoke detectors provide the early warning you need to stop a fire in its tracks. Be sure to change the batteries every three months and test them every month. Place one smoke detector in every room and fire alarms on every floor. Like everything else in the world, smoke detectors have a life expectancy. Replace your smoke detectors every ten years.

Overhead Sprinklers Prevent Fire Damage
One important tool for putting out a fire is water.  Overhead sprinklers can douse a fire as soon as they detect it.  If you have equipment and paper that is sensitive to water, simply have them installed in the areas that are prone to fire outbreaks.

Your business is your livelihood. You do not want to lose it to a fire. Taking the proper precautions can save you a lot of time, effort and money in the long run. Use these tips to help you take preventive measures to protect your business.

Don't Let Water Damage Ruin Your Holiday Travel Plans

10/4/2019 (Permalink)

Airplane flying, sunny blue skies and yellow clouds Is your home secure while you are traveling for the holidays?

Traveling to Grandma’s house for the holidays?  Make sure your travel plans include keeping your home safe while you are away.

The Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s holidays are quickly approaching. When leaving Gainesville for vacation, few people consider prepping their homes against water damage. You go through your checklist of turning off the coffee pot and stove and locking all the doors, but what happens if you have a leak and need a water pipe repair while you are away? A broken pipe can do a lot of damage, especially if it is left unattended for several days. 

Prepping Your Home

Before leaving for an extended vacation, check your home for leaks. Examine the pipes under the sink and the water heater for any cracks or rust. Inspect the hoses that connect to any appliances. Insulate any exposed pipes if you are leaving in the winter. A pipe that burst due to freezing needs water pipe repair immediately. Ask a neighbor, friend or family member if they can check in on your home periodically. If no one can check on your home, turn off the main water and drain the pipes. 

Preventing Floods

It is important to not only prep your home to prevent damage from a leak but also from a storm. Make sure your gutters are cleaned and water can flow freely through them. Check your sump pump. Clear out any debris you see. Test it by filling the sump pit and turning on the pump. Check your window seals and your roof for any leaks. All of these checks are especially important if any heavy rains or storms are expected in your area.

Returning from a vacation to find your house flooded can be devastating. Standing water can cause real damage to your home. A simple water pipe repair can escalate into a big problem if no one is there to address the issue. Take the time to prep your home against intruding water before you leave. That way you can enjoy your time away without worries.

If you have water damage call SERVPRO of Gainesville at 770-536-1010.

Clogged Gutters Can Cause Damage To Your Home

10/3/2019 (Permalink)

House gutter with leaves Clogged gutters can cause serious damage to the interior and exterior of your home.

Fall is here and as the leaves begin to fall from the trees, we need to be mindful of making sure these leaves don’t become a problem for our houses. As the leaves begin to fall many will end up in the gutters on our roof and if you aren’t careful this could create a problem that could result in costly damages needing repair.

While it’s still dry out, the leaves won’t cause much of a problem. However, as soon as you get your first heavy rainstorm, the problems will start to pop up. If your gutters are filled with leaves, the rain can’t drain out properly. When this happens, your gutters will overflow, and the water could cause water damage to walls, soffits, fascia, siding, basements, and even your foundation.

If water does back up in your gutters, the debris and pooling water can start to eat away at the gutter materials, which can cause holes and leaks. Once you have holes, it might not be a simple fix—you could end up having to replace your gutters entirely.

How often you clean your gutters depends largely on where you live. If you live in an area without any trees around, you can probably get away with cleaning your gutters just once a year, since they aren’t filling up with leaves and other debris as quickly. Of course, if there is a tree close to your house that does lose its leaves, you might have to clean them more often.

Wireless Emergency Alerts - Stay Informed of Weather Threats

10/3/2019 (Permalink)

FEMA alert, phone, emergency Weather alerts can be sent to your mobile device when you may be in harm's way.

Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEAs) are free notifications delivered to your mobile device as part of a public safety system provided by authorized government-alerting authorities. The alerts are designed to inform you of imminent threats to safety or missing persons alerts in your area (e.g.  AMBER Alerts). 

Government partners include local and state public safety agents, FEMA, the FCC, the Department of Homeland Security, and the National Weather Service. A WEA can be sent to your mobile device when you may be in harm’s way, without downloading an app or subscribing to a service.  WEAs may be used to share extreme weather warnings, local emergencies requiring evacuation or immediate action, AMBER Alerts, and Presidential Alerts during a national emergency.

This is America’s wireless industry helping to build a Weather-Ready Nation through a nationwide text emergency alert system, called Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEA), which will warn you when weather threatens.

The great piece of this is that there is no signup required, and Alerts are sent automatically to WEA-capable phones during an emergency. With WEA, alerts may be sent to your mobile device when you may be in harm’s way.

A WEA will look like a text message. The WEA message will typically show the type and time of the alert, any action you should take, and the agency issuing the alert.  The message will be no more than 90 characters.  WEA message will include a special tone and vibration, with both repeated twice.

The National Weather Service will send the following types of messages:

    • Tornado and Flash Flood Warnings
    • Hurricane, Typhoon, Dust Storm and Extreme Wind Warnings

Water Removal and Extraction

9/11/2019 (Permalink)

Truck mounted extraction equipment Our new truck mounted extraction unit is ready to be dispatched to customers water losses.

The water extraction step removes the majority of the water from your home or property. By performing a thorough water extraction, SERVPRO Franchise Professionals help reduce the drying time and help to prevent mold and secondary water damage. They use powerful pumps and truck-mounted vacuum units to quickly remove hundreds or thousands of gallons of water from your property.

Emergency Water Removal

Highly trained technicians will begin the water removal process almost immediately. Depending on the amount of water, they may use powerful submersible pumps in addition to industrial strength, wet/dry vacuums. This step helps to reduce drying time and helps to prevent mold and secondary water damage.

  • Remove Excess Water
  • Use Submersible Pumps and Industrial Wet/Dry Vacuums

Inspect the Carpet Pad and Carpet

SERVPRO Franchise Professionals inspect the carpet and pad and determine if it should be removed to protect the subfloor.

  • Inspect Carpet Pad and Remove If Needed
  • Inspect Carpet and Remove If Needed

Water Removal Equipment

  • Moisture detectors, hygrometers, and other meters measure the extent of moisture saturation.
  • Infrared cameras may be used to find “hidden” water behind walls and ceilings.
  • Submersible and gas-powered pumps are used for continuous pumping of high-level water.
  • Truck-mounted and portable extraction units perform efficient water removal.

Quick Mitigation for Water Damaged Gainesville Homes

9/10/2019 (Permalink)

SERVPRO green van in front of SERVPRO Building We've added a new van with a truck-mount to our fleet. This new addition will help us respond faster to your water loss.

Water loss incidents can quickly spread throughout your Gainesville home and threaten areas even far removed from the source of the emergency. As much as many homeowners might strive to handle many of these disasters on their own, water losses can affect areas beyond what is easily seen, requiring sophisticated equipment and mitigation tools to overcome. Without a fast turnaround on the effects to your house, construction materials risk deterioration and the property also becomes susceptible to hazardous conditions like mold growth. 

Professional restoration technicians like our SERVPRO team can offer real-time solutions for water damage to Gainesville homes. We have a broad inventory of equipment, and with the connection to a larger national network, we can continually upgrade and improve our equipment and tools to be the most competitive in the restoration industry. We know how quickly water loss incidents can get out of control, so we have a 24/7 response to these emergencies to begin mitigation work as soon as our professionals first arrive. 

Mitigation serves to reduce your overall loss when disasters strike your residence. While this ultimately involves multiple tasks happening simultaneously, it involves working to extract standing water, dry saturated elements, and protect the contents of your house that are at risk for damages. Our SERVPRO team has extensive training the Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) in both Water Restoration (WRT) and Applied Structural Drying (ASD) to offer our customers fast and confident solutions when every minute counts. 

Our fast response in a water loss crisis can get vital drying efforts started immediately to prevent unnecessary tear out and replacement of materials like carpeting and drywall. We have a restore before replacing mentality, and that begins with a quick mobilization whenever emergencies occur. 

While many homeowners might strive to provide their house with the restoration and cleaning it needs when damaging situations occur, water loss incidents can spread much farther than you might realize. Trust in our SERVPRO of Gainesville team to work quickly to make these situations “Like it never even happened.” Give us a call today at (770) 536-1010. 

Preventing and Stopping Indoor Mold Growth

9/6/2019 (Permalink)

Mold in staircase Don't let this happen to you - take precautionary steps to prevent mold.

The key to preventing and stopping indoor mold growth is controlling excessive moisture and condensation. Keeping problem areas (such as bathrooms, laundry room, kitchen) in the home clean and dry is critical. In general, mold will not grow indoors without water, dampness or excessive moisture.

The three main factors that contribute to condensation of water on building surfaces:

  • Relative Humidity: Condensation occurs when the air is saturated with water and it cannot hold any more moisture. For example, steam generated from bathroom showers or from cooking can fill up the air with moisture, which will then condense into drops of water on cooler surfaces, such as mirrors and windows. Where possible, localized sources of humidity, such as clothes dryers, should be directly vented to the outdoors. To lower indoor humidity during warm, humid weather, air conditioners and/or dehumidifiers should be used. In chronically damp areas such as basements or crawlspaces, it is often recommended that dehumidifiers be used to maintain humidity levels below 60 percent.
  • Temperature: Warm air holds more moisture than cold air. Condensation occurs when warm humid air comes into contact with a cold surface and the moisture condenses into water. This can often be seen on single-pane windows, where water condenses and then runs down, causing the wood frames and sills to rot and the wall under the windows to blister. Condensation can occur on exterior walls, particularly north-facing walls, if they are not properly insulated. Other chronically cold surfaces, such as cold-water pipes, should be covered with insulation to help prevent condensation.
  • Poor Ventilation: Indoor humidity can build up if there is not enough ventilation and exchange of indoor and outdoor air. Where there is little or no air movement, such as behind dressers and cabinets, surfaces can remain cooler than surrounding areas, which can lead to increased condensation and mold growth. It is recommended that the area be ventilated, and the occupants use exhaust fans (vented to the outdoors) to remove moisture from high-humidity areas, particularly in bathrooms, kitchens and laundry areas. Furniture should be moved slightly away from walls so that air can freely pass behind it. Air should be allowed to circulate between rooms and regularly ventilate to remove humid air. Fans should be used as needed.

Other things that can be done are to clean and repair gutters regularly, make sure the ground slopes down and away from the home’s foundation and keep air conditioner drip pans and drain lines clean. In addition, in air-conditioned buildings in hot and humid climates, vinyl wall coverings on the interior sides of exterior walls should not be used, as these materials can trap moisture, resulting in mold growth underneath them.

If you have flooding or leaking pipes, any standing water should be promptly removed, and water-damaged materials should either be dried out and cleaned or removed and replaced. Porous materials that are wet for more than 48 hours are likely to produce mold growth and should be discarded. In instances where the water damage is extensive, it is recommended that professional help.  If you have water damage call SERVPRO of Gainesville at 770-536-1010.

Are You and Your House Ready for Winter?

9/6/2019 (Permalink)

Frozen pipe leaking Take steps to prevent frozen pipes and water damage to your home.

It’s September and we’re still in the grip of summer’s heat but now is the time to start thinking about your home and if it is ready for the coming winter.  Key to protecting your home from water damage in the winter is making sure your pipes are properly insulated and protected from sub-freezing temperatures.  Water expands when it freezes. In pipes, the expansion can cause ruptures. The damage often occurs not at the point where a pipe has frozen, but between the freeze and a faucet. As the ice blocks the pipe completely and expands, the water pressure in the pipe increases. Too much pressure will rupture the pipe.

In northern regions of the United States, pipes are typically protected in insulated spaces, reducing the risk of freezing. In southern climates, where subfreezing temperatures are less common, pipes may not be as well protected. Pipes that run through exterior walls are particularly at risk, but those that run through uninsulated attics and crawlspaces can also freeze. In either region, extended subfreezing weather, cracks in walls or foundations and entry points for pipe and cable put pipes at risk. Poor insulation increases the vulnerability. Outside the home, hose spigots are also at risk.

Take steps to prevent frozen pipes:

Many of the repairs and improvements you can make to minimize the risk of frozen pipes are basic energy-conservation practices.

  • Locate and seal cracks and openings in the walls, attic, basement or crawlspace.
  • Weather strip and caulk around crawlspace doors and basement windows.
  • Make sure your home is properly insulated. Pay particular attention to areas where pipes are located.
  • Insulate unprotected pipes and don't leave any gaps in the insulation. Pipe sleeves simplify the process. Keep the pieces tight against each other and seal the slits and joints with duct tape.
  • Install thermostat-controlled, UL-listed heat cables. Use cables that are appropriate for your pipe and follow the manufacturer's instructions for installation. Some manufacturers recommend unplugging the cables at the end of the season.
  • Install storm windows over basement windows or replace the old windows with energy-efficient alternatives.

Have Questions about Water Damage?

Call us Today – SERVPRO of Gainesville 770-536-1010

Preparing Your Pets for Emergencies

9/3/2019 (Permalink)

Dog in car with emergency supplies Do you have an emergency plan for your pets?

SERVPRO Industries, LLC is once again proud to be a member of the National Preparedness Month Coalition and is committed to helping the U.S. Department of Homeland Security in their efforts to promote the importance of preparedness planning.

When making plans in preparation of an emergency, don’t forget to plan for your pets. Part of making this plan is preparing an emergency kit for you pet just as you would with all other members of your family.

Just as you do with your family’s emergency supply kit, think first about the basics for survival, particularly food and water.

  • Food: Keep at least three days of food in an airtight, waterproof container. ü Water: Store at least three days of water specifically for your pets, in addition to water you need for yourself and your family.
  • Medicines and medical records: Keep an extra supply of medicines your pet takes on a regular basis in a waterproof container.
  • First aid kit: Talk to your veterinarian about what is most appropriate for your pet’s emergency medical needs. Most kits should include cotton bandage rolls, bandage tape and scissors; antibiotic ointment; flea and tick prevention; latex gloves, isopropyl alcohol and saline solution. Include a pet first aid reference book.
  • Collar with ID tag, harness or leash: Your pet should wear a collar with its rabies tag and identification at all times. Include a backup leash, collar and ID tag in your pet’s emergency supply kit.
  • Important documents: Place copies of your pet’s registration information, adoption papers, vaccination documents and medical records in a clean plastic bag or waterproof container and also add them to your kit.
  • Crate or other pet carrier: If you need to evacuate in an emergency situation take your pets and animals with you, provided that it is practical to do so.
  • Sanitation: Include pet litter and litter box if appropriate, newspapers, paper towels, plastic trash bags and household chlorine bleach to provide for your pet’s sanitation needs. You can use bleach as a disinfectant (dilute nine parts water to one-part bleach), or in an emergency you can also use it to purify water. Use 8 drops of regular household liquid bleach per gallon of water, stir well and let it stand for 30 minutes before use. Do not use scented or color safe bleaches or those with added cleaners.
  • A picture of you and your pet together: If you become separated from your pet during an emergency, a picture of you and your pet together will help you document ownership and allow others to assist you in identifying your pet. Include detailed information about species, breed, age, sex, color and distinguishing characteristics.
  • Familiar items: Put favorite toys, treats or bedding in your kit. Familiar items can help reduce stress for your pet. 

Consider two kits. In one, put everything your pets will need to stay where you are and make it on your own. The other should be a lightweight, smaller version you can take with you if you and your pets have to get away.

Common Causes of Electrical Fires

9/3/2019 (Permalink)

Overloaded surge protector on fire Overloading an extension cord is a common cause of electrical fires.

Most electrical fires are caused by faulty electrical outlets and or old, outdated appliances. The following are the most common reasons why electrical fires happen:

  1. Old electrical sockets and unsafe appliances

Appliances that are old and overused and those that fall short of modern safety standards are the worst culprits. Frayed electrical cords, self-jointed wires, and worn out sockets that are not properly grounded are major causes of fires. They become ready outlets for directing heat and fire to carpets, rugs, curtains and combustible plastic. Older appliances draw more power than the wall sockets can handle.

  1. Using light fixtures that exceed the permissible wattage

A very common cause of fires is plugging lights, lighting appliances and bulbs into electrical sockets that cannot handle higher wattage levels. Antique lighting appliances may have defective wiring that makes the appliance unstable by overheating. Decorating lights with colored paper and cloth shades can increase the risk of fire when the material or fabric heats up.

  1. Using multiple appliances plugged into an extension cord

Unrestricted use of extension cords is a major fire hazard. The risk of fire increases when your TV, home theatre, computer and other appliances are all plugged into a single extension cord. This creates excessive power load on a single socket which may not be designed to handle that load.

  1. Locating portable heaters near combustible materials

Portable space heaters that use coils are potentially dangerous when they are positioned carelessly near curtains and rugs and adjacent to beds and cloth covered furniture. The chances of inflammable material coming into contact with the red-hot coils increase the risk of fire.

  1. Wiring that becomes defective with the passage of time

Over a period of time you add more electrical appliances such as wide screen televisions, home theatre, microwave oven, refrigerator and air conditioners. The outdated home wiring cannot handle the increased power load. Older wiring tends to heat up quickly and catches fire. If the breaker boxes are themselves defective, they cannot prevent overheated electrical panels from catching fire.

Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage?
Call Us Today – SERVPRO of Gainesville 770-536-1010

Fire Extinguisher 101

8/7/2019 (Permalink)

There are many types of fire extinguishers.

Not only is it smart to keep fire extinguishers in your home or business, it’s also the law in many states.

It's important to make sure you have the right types of fire extinguishers on hand to put out common fires.

Getting started with fire extinguishers

The first thing to do when choosing a fire extinguisher is to decide which rooms in your house need one. You should keep at least one on each level of your house. Make sure you keep fire extinguishers handy where fires are more likely to start, like in the kitchen and garage.

Understanding fire extinguisher classes

There are four classes of fire extinguishers – A, B, C and D – and each class can put out a different type of fire.

  • Class A extinguishers will put out fires in ordinary combustibles such as wood and paper
  • Class B extinguishers are for use on flammable liquids like grease, gasoline and oil
  • Class C extinguishers are suitable for use only on electrically energized fires
  • Class D extinguishers are designed for use on flammable metals

Multipurpose extinguishers can be used on different types of fires and will be labeled with more than one class, like A-B, B-C or A-B-C.

Purchasing your fire extinguisher

Now that you know how many extinguishers you need and what types to get, you can head to the hardware store. Look for fire extinguishers that you can easily lift. Larger extinguishers may pack more power, but you must be able to use it properly.

Learning how to use your fire extinguisher

Once you've made your purchases, familiarize yourself with the fire extinguisher directions so you’ll be prepared in case you need to put out a fire. Typically, fire extinguishers are easy to use in the case of a fire. Most of the types operate using the P.A.S.S. technique:

  • Pull the pin on the fire extinguisher to break the tamper seal.
  • Aim the fire extinguisher low, with the nozzle pointed at the base of the fire. 
  • Squeeze the handle of the fire extinguisher to release the extinguishing agent. 
  • Sweep the nozzle from side to side while pointed at the base of the fire until it is extinguished. 
  • If the fire re-ignites, repeat the last 3 steps.

Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage?
Call Us Today – SERVPRO of Gainesville 770-536-1010

Ways to Prevent Mold Growth in Your Bathroom

8/7/2019 (Permalink)

Mold in bathroom

Whether you are managing a commercial or residential property, fighting mold in the bathroom is necessary if you want a clean and safe bathroom as well as prevent damage to the walls and ceiling.

All bathrooms will have moisture, it goes with the territory, but by eliminating as much moisture as possible in the bathroom, you can stop mold growth or at least slow it down if it does appear.

Maintaining a mold-free bathroom is actually pretty easy if you follow these easy tips and remain diligent in your cleaning effort.

Stop Bathroom Mold Growth with a Good Fan

Effective fans are your first line of defense against mold and moisture. Be sure that all your bathrooms have a well-functioning fan. Make sure the CFM, cubic feet per minute, count is enough to cover the size of the bathroom.

Run the fan during all showers and baths for at least a half hour afterwards. You can put the fan on a timer so that you don’t have to worry about remembering to turn it off.

Fighting Bathroom Mold with a Squeegee

Who knew the bathroom squeegee could be so useful. Using the squeegee on your tub and shower walls after every shower or bath reduces up to 75 percent of the moisture in the air. That alone takes care of so much moisture that can lead to the rapid growth of mold in all areas of the bathroom.

Stop Mold Growth by Fixing All Leaks

If you have any leaks within the bathroom, fix it right away. Call a plumber immediately and have them check for any hidden leaks within the walls. Going a long period of time with any leaks will cause mold growth and will make it hard to get rid of later.

Mold Remediation

If you do ever find mold, have a professional take care of it. Mold is so complicated and getting rid of it is hard. SERVPRO of Gainesviile has trained and certified mold specialists to help you with your mold issues

ERP - Emergency Ready Profile - Is your business prepared?

8/7/2019 (Permalink)

Water loss in a commercial property

As a homeowner you always want to make sure you have emergency contacts close by in case anything unexpected happens. What if you are a homeowner but also a business owner?  SERVPRO realizes that you might not think about the unexpected things that might happen to your business; fire, flooding, tornado damage, etc. 

That's why we have our Emergency Ready Program available to you! Our ERP, Emergency Ready Profile is the best way to reduce business interruption following a disaster, plan for it now! As many as 50% of businesses may never recover following a disaster, according to the latest industry research. Of the businesses that survive, most of them had a preparedness plan in place. Pre-planning can serve as an insurance policy aimed at peace of mind. 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.


The SERVPRO Emergency Ready Profile assessment can be done at your facility with no cost to you. This means there is no need to allocate funds, giving you a great value at no cost. A concise Profile Document that contains only the critical information needed in the event of an emergency. – It will only take a little time to complete and will not take you away from current projects. But it will save a lot of time if ever needed. A guide to help you get back into your building following a disaster. This can help minimize the amount of time your business is inactive by having an immediate plan of action. Having an ERP establishes your local SERVPRO® Franchise Professional as your disaster mitigation and restoration provider. You will have a provider that is recognized as an industry leader who is close by. The ERP identifies of the line of command for authorizing work to begin. This saves time, so we can begin the work of mitigating the damage which can save you both time and money. The ERP provides facility details such as shut-off valve locations, priority areas and priority contact information. Having a quick reference of what to do, how to do it and who to call provides solutions in advance of an emergency so that during the emergency you are “Ready for whatever happens.”  Give us a call today at 770-536-1010 and set up your ERP!

Earthquakes

12/12/2018 (Permalink)

December 12, 2018 - 4.4 magnitude earthquake

An early morning earthquake in east Tennessee early Wednesday December 12th was widely felt over the Southeast U.S. 

The magnitude 4.4 quake struck around 4:14 am est and was followed about 12 minutes later by a magnitude 3.3 aftershock.  

According to the U.S. Geological Survey, light shaking was observed over most of the Atlanta metro area, and a number of states from southern Alabama to South Carolina, North Carolina, and Kentucky. 

There were no immediate reports of damage or injuries.

This quake was one of the strongest on record in east Tennessee, exceeded only by a November 30, 1973 near Maryville, south of Knoxville which lead to minor damage near the epicenter.

Today's earthquake reminds us that it is always a good idea to be prepared for any type of emergency.

What is an earthquake?  An earthquake is the sudden, rapid shaking of the earth, caused by the breaking and shifting of underground rock. Earthquakes can cause buildings to collapse and cause heavy items to fall, resulting in injuries and property damage. Earthquakes can:

  • Happen anywhere – though higher risk areas include California, Alaska, and the Mississippi Valley;
  • Happen without warning;
  • Cause fires and damage roads; and
  • Cause tsunamis, landslides, and avalanches.

If an earthquake happens, protect yourself right away. Drop, Cover, then Hold On!

  • If in a vehicle, pull over and stop.
  • If in bed, stay there.
  • If outdoors, stay outdoors.
  • Do not get in a doorway.
  • Do not run outside.

HOW TO STAY SAFE WHEN AN EARTHQUAKE THREATENS

Prepare NOW

  • Secure items, such as televisions, and objects that hang on walls. Store heavy and breakable objects on low shelves.
  • Practice Drop, Cover, then Hold On with family and coworkers. Drop to your hands and knees. Cover your head and neck with your arms. Crawl only as far as needed to reach cover from falling materials. Hold on to any sturdy furniture until the shaking stops.
  • Create a family emergency communications plan that has an out-of-state contact. Plan where to meet if you get separated.
  • Make a supply kit that includes enough food and water for at least three days, a flashlight, a fire extinguisher, and a whistle. Consider each person’s specific needs, including medication. Do not forget the needs of pets. Have extra batteries and charging devices for phones and other critical equipment.
  • Consider obtaining an earthquake insurance policy. Standard homeowner’s insurance does not cover earthquake damage.
  • Consider a retrofit of your building to correct structural issues that make it vulnerable to collapse during an earthquake.

Making A Small Fire "Like it never even happened."

10/26/2018 (Permalink)

Even a small fire can cause odors for years to come if the affected areas are not properly cleaned and deodorized. Fire, smoke and soot damage in your home or business can create unpleasant and potentially permanent problems.

With technicians certified by the Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration (IICRC), SERVPRO of Gainesville professionals provide specialized services that can rid your home or business of offensive odors left by fire or smoke damage. SERVPRO of Gainesville professionals do not coverup lingering odors with fragrance; they seek out and remove the sources of the odor. Once the source is found, SERVPRO’s own proprietary line of cleaning products is used to treat and prevent the odor from returning. Any restorable item in affected areas will also be professionally cleaned and deodorized, including furniture, draperies and upholstery, electronics, art, flooring, walls, ceilings, HVAC air ducts, and more. Ask your SERVPRO of Gainesville professional to explain the various deodorization methods available and which will work best for you. If you suffer a fire damage or some other accident and require deodorization services, contact us at 770-536-1010. Whether it’s fire, water, or mold damage, or just a stubborn odor that refuses to go away, we’ll help make it “Like it never even happened.”

When Your Basement Floods

10/26/2018 (Permalink)

Gainesville, Georgia Residents: We Specialize in Flooded Basement Cleanup and Restoration!

A basement can flood at any time, although flooding most often occurs during heavy rainfall. Basements are inherently prone to flooding because they are the lowest level of a building and are normally built partly or entirely below ground level. There are several reasons why your basement could flood, including: 

  • A blocked or failed sewer lateral pipe
  • Heavy rain causes surface water to pool around your home
  • Storm sewer backup
  • Sanitary sewer backup
  • Foundation drainage failure
  • Water supply-line break or hot-water tank failure
  • And many more

Have Questions about Basement Flooding?

Call Today 770-536-1010

If flood water is not handled quickly and properly, it can jeopardize your health and safety, and cause severe damage to your home’s structure. Remember, the longer you wait, the worse the problem will get.

The bottom line: a flooded basement can jeopardize your health, safety, and your home’s integrity. It’s worth making a call to SERVPRO of Gainesville, Georgia and let our trained, professional crews handle the situation safely and correctly. We have earned the trust of hundreds of homeowners, business owners, and property professionals.

We are Flooded Basement Specialists:

  • We are available 24 hours/7 days per week
  • We’re a preferred vendor to many national insurance companies
  • We bill the insurance directly – one less thing for you to worry about
  • Our technicians are highly-trained in water restoration techniques
  • We use s500 IICRC restoration standards
  • Advanced inspection and extraction equipment

Basement Flooded?  Call SERVPRO of Gainesville 770-536-1010.

Fires - Assessing the Damage to Properly Mitigate

10/26/2018 (Permalink)

When a fire starts inside your home, it is never a pleasant experience. Fires not only threaten the safety of you and your family but can also be costly to repair. The heat, flames, and smoke produced by a fire can cause extensive damage to your home. 
 
Whether the fire is small or large, the best choice would be to have the professionals come in and assess the situation. SERVPRO of Gainesville is IICRC certified and have experience with different types of fire scenarios. 
 
Both the heat and smoke created by a blaze causes several types of damage to your home. Flames can burn content and building materials inside the home. Smoke spreads throughout the structure leaving behind soot and foul odors. Our professional technicians at SERVPRO of Gainesville are taught how to mitigate fire damage by putting each case into a category based on the severity of the damage. 
  
No matter how severe the damage is in your home after a fire, hiring professionals can always get you the best results. SERVPRO of Gainesville can be reached at (770) 536-1010, available 24 hours a day and seven days a week to help you. 

Floodplains What Are They and How to Protect Your Property

9/14/2018 (Permalink)

A floodplain is an area of land adjacent to a stream or river which stretches from the banks of its channel to the base of the enclosing valley walls, and which experiences flooding during periods of high discharge.  The soils usually consist of levees, silts and sands deposited during floods.  

Historically, many towns have been built on floodplains where they are highly susceptible to flooding for a number of reasons

  • access to fresh water
  • the fertility of floodplain land for farming
  • cheap transportation, via rivers and railroads which often followed rivers
  • ease of development of flat land

The extent of floodplain inundation depends in part on the flood magnitude.  What should you do to reduce the potential amount of damage to your home if you live in a floodplain?

  • Elevate and reinforce your home to make damage less likely during a flood.
  • Check with a professional to:
    • Raise your furnace, water heater, and electric panel to floors that are less likely to be flooded. An undamaged water heater may be your best source of fresh water after a flood.
    • Install check valves in plumbing to prevent floodwater from backing up into the drains of your home. (As a last resort, when floods threaten, use large corks or stoppers to plug showers, tubs, or basins.)
    • Construct barriers such as levees, berms, and flood walls to stop floodwater from entering the building (if permitted by local building codes).
    • Seal walls in basements with waterproofing compounds to avoid seepage through cracks.
  • Use sand bags when flooding is expected:
    • It takes two people about one hour to fill and place 100 sandbags, creating a wall one foot high and 20 feet long.
    • Make sure you have enough sand, burlap or plastic bags, shovels, strong helpers, and time to place them properly.
    • If a flood is expected, some communities will offer free sandbags to residents. Be sure to watch or listen to the news so you can access these resources.

Remember: standard homeowners insurance doesn’t cover flooding but flood insurance does. Get information at www.FloodSmart.gov.

Mold Prevention

9/14/2018 (Permalink)

Mold can grow anywhere: on carpet, clothing, food, paper, and even in places you can't see, such as the backside of drywall, areas inside walls around leaking or condensing pipes, and above ceiling tiles. Mold spores spread easily and cannot be completely eradicated.

Not only is a mold problem difficult and costly to fix, but mold can also produce allergens and irritants (and, rarely, toxins) that may compromise your health.

What can you do if you're concerned about mold growing in your home?

The best approach is preventing mold before it becomes a problem. The key to mold prevention is simple: moisture control.

Here are nine ways to curb moisture indoors, and the mold that thrives on it.

  1. Identify problem areas in your home and correct them.You can't mold-proof your home, but you can make it mold-resistant. Do an audit of your home: where are the problem areas? Does the basement flood? Do you notice frequent condensation on an upstairs window? Is there a water stain on the ceiling from a persistent leak? Preventing mold from growing or spreading might be as simple as ripping up carpet in a damp basement, installing mold-resistant products, or repairing damaged gutters. Or it may be a matter of major excavation and waterproofing. Whatever the case, address the problem now. It might cost some money up front, but it will surely be costlier down the road if mold continues to grow unchecked.
  2. Dry wet areas immediately.Mold can't grow without moisture, so tackle wet areas right away. Seepage into the basement after a heavy rainfall, accumulation from a leaky pipe, even a spill on the carpet should be dried within 24 to 48 hours. If you've experienced a flood, remove water-damaged carpets, bedding, and furniture if they can't be completely dried. Even everyday occurrences need attention: don't leave wet items lying around the house, and make sure to dry the floor and walls after a shower. Don't leave wet clothes in the washing machine, where mold can spread quickly. Hang them to dry — preferably outside or in areas with good air circulation.
  3. Prevent moisture with proper ventilation.It may be that your routine domestic activities are encouraging the growth of mold in your home. Make sure an activity as simple as cooking dinner, taking a shower, or doing a load of laundry doesn't invite mold by providing proper ventilation in your bathroom, kitchen, laundry room, and any other high-moisture area. Vent appliances that produce moisture — clothes dryers, stoves — to the outside (not the attic). Use AC units and dehumidifiers (especially in humid climates), but make sure they don’t produce moisture themselves by checking them periodically and cleaning them as directed by the manufacturer. Your energy-efficient home may be holding moisture inside, so open a window when cooking or washing dishes or showering or run an exhaust fan.
  4. Equip your home with mold-resistant products.Building a new home or renovating an old one? Use mold-resistant products like mold-resistant drywall or mold-resistant Sheetrock, and mold inhibitors for paints. Traditional drywall is composed of a gypsum plaster core pressed between plies of paper. Mold-resistant drywall is paperless — the gypsum core is covered in fiberglass, making the surface highly water-resistant. Moisture-resistant drywall is especially valuable in areas prone to wetness, such as bathrooms, laundry rooms, basements, and kitchens. Not only is traditional drywall more susceptible to mold than the paperless kind, but it is also difficult to rid of mold, and removal and replacement can be expensive. Mold-resistant gypsum board is also available; the core of the drywall is developed in such a way to prevent moisture absorption, and thus prevent mold growth.
  5. Monitor humidity indoors.The EPA recommends keeping indoor humidity between 30 and 60 percent. You can measure humidity with a moisture meter purchased from your local hardware store. You'll also be able to detect high humidity by simply paying attention to potential problem areas in your home. Telltale signs of excessive humidity include condensation on windows, pipes, and walls. If you notice condensation, dry the surface immediately and address the source of moisture (for example, turn off a humidifier if water appears on the inside of nearby windows).
  6. Direct water away from your home.If the ground around your home isn't sufficiently sloped away from the foundation, water may collect there and seep into your crawlspace or basement.
  7. Clean or repair roof gutters.A mold problem might be a simple matter of a roof that is leaking because of full or damaged gutters. Have your roof gutters cleaned regularly and inspected for damage. Repair them as necessary and keep an eye out for water stains after storms that may indicate a leak.
  8. Improve air flow in your home.According to the EPA, as temperatures drop, the air can hold less moisture. Without good air flow in your home, that excess moisture may appear on your walls, windows and floors. To increase circulation, open doors between rooms, move furniture away from walls, and open doors to closets that may be colder than the rooms they’re in. Let fresh air in to reduce moisture and keep mold at bay.
  9. Keep mold off household plants.They're beautiful and help keep your indoor air clean — and mold loves them. The moist soil in indoor plants is a perfect breeding ground for mold, which may then spread to other areas of your house. Instead of getting rid of your plants, try adding a bit of Taheebo tea to the water you give to your houseplants. The oil of this tree, which withstands fungi even in rain forests, helps hinder mold growth in plant soil and can be found at natural food stores.

Finally, educate yourself on your region's climate — be it the cold and wet Northeast, the hot and wet South, the hot and dry Southwest, or the cold and dry West — and how it responds to moisture. There is no one-size-fits-all solution when it comes to mold prevention. Knowing what works for your climate and your home is an important first step.

Common Causes of Water Damage

9/14/2018 (Permalink)

This Gainesville customer's bedroom carpet was saturated with water after a pipe burst in their home.

Water damage in the home, especially damage that is not identified, can cause serious issues to the home’s structure and even to you and your family’s health. Unfortunately, far too many homeowners are unaware of some of the most common causes of water damage and are therefore not prepared to prevent it in the first place. While some water damage is unavoidable, being educated on typical sources for water issues will make you more prepared to identify a problem and handle it before it becomes both costly and destructive to your home.

Residential water damage is extremely common, especially in homes throughout the Hall County, Gainesville, Georgia area. Understanding potential sources of water issues is the first step to prevention. The following are some of the most common causes of water damage:

  1. Washing machine supply lines pressure
  2. Dripping toilet
  3. Busted or leaking pipes
  4. Sewer lines backup
  5. Gutters
  6. Water buildup in crawl spaces
  7. HVAC problems
  8. Malfunctioning appliance like dishwasher, sink, refrigerator, etc.
  9. Heavy rains or major storms

While the above causes are the most commonly seen challenges for homeowners, there are a variety of additional causes of water damage. Being proactive is the best way to save money and maintain your home’s interior and exterior in optimal condition. If you believe that your home has suffered from water damage, our team of SERVPRO water damage restoration experts is here to help. Call us today to learn more!

The Mold Remediation Process

9/14/2018 (Permalink)

When mold is not visible, SERVPRO recommends hiring a hygienist to perform an air quality test to properly determine the affected areas in the home or business. But when the mold has spread more than 10 square feet then there is a process that begins towards addressing it properly and efficiently:

  • Assessment-Your property will be carefully inspected for signs of mold and the water sources possibly causing it. Mold feeds on cellulose and water and can be hidden from plain view.
  • Containment- Different containment procedures will be placed to prevent the spread of mold, like physical barriers and negative air pressure to keep the mold spores from spreading during the cleanup process. 
  • Air Filtration- Specialized filtration equipment captures microscopic mold spores out of the air. SERVPRO technicians use air scrubbers and HEPA vacuums to prevent the spread of these mold spores while the mold remediation is in progress. 
  • Removing- The process of mold remediation depends on the amount of mold growth and the type of surface it's on. Antimicrobial treatments will be used to eliminate mold colonies and help prevent new ones from forming. Removing and disposing of mold-infested porous materials, like drywall and flooring, may be necessary.
  • Cleaning- SERVPRO cleans your furniture, decorative items, and other restorable items affected by mold. We use a variety of cleaning techniques to clean and sanitize your belongings. 
  • Restoration- Depending on the level of mold damage, some building materials may have to be removed. Restoration may involve minor repairs or major repairs.

Smoke Damage in Your Commercial Property

9/14/2018 (Permalink)

Whether your commercial property in Gainesville, Georgia, has experienced a fire or a fire has occurred nearby, smoke damage is typically a covered loss. Depending on the proximity of the fire, soot damage can pose a threat to the condition of your property. The smell of smoke can also disturb employees and customers, but it is relatively easy to eliminate this odor with the right devices. Read on to learn about the specific types of damage that smoke can cause to a property and smoke cleaning methods.

Smoke can damage a property in several ways:

• Degrade air quality
• Discolor walls and contents
• Stain upholstery
• Corrode metals
• Degrade appliance finishes
• Strip wood finishes

Smoke can be particularly damaging if it has a high acid content. During a fire, hot air carries smoke and soot as it rises and expands, spreading both throughout the surrounding area. Layers of smoke and soot can form a residue on top of every surface that becomes more difficult to clean over time. It is important to contact restoration experts for smoke damage as soon as possible.

Hiring experts can prevent smoke and soot from lingering and causing damage over time. Cleaning experts will perform several steps to restore your commercial property to pre-fire condition, including: 

• Inspecting and assessing the extent of the damage
• Removing smoke and soot from surfaces using specialized equipment and techniques
• Cleaning all restorable items and surfaces
• Filtering the air with air scrubbers and using ozone or fogging equipment to neutralize odors

If you are concerned about soot or smoke residue inside of electronics, ask the experts to take a look. Acidic smoke residue can corrode metal within devices and cause them to fail. Regardless of the extent of the smoke damage or soot damage, the right smoke cleaning service can eliminate the problem and completely restore your commercial property in

Do You Know Where The Water Shut Off Is At Work?

9/14/2018 (Permalink)

Many workplaces always call on the boss or the maintenance man when something goes wrong. What if they were home sick, or in a meeting and you need to locate the water shut off, where do you start? 

SERVPRO of Gainesville, Georgia can help commercial property managers in planning for a water, fire, storm damage. How? With a free Emergency Response Profile created by the SERVPRO Marketing Department. 

By having a plan of action and including it in your regular training at your office you can minimize the cost if an unplanned event happens like a frozen pipe, fire or any other type of disaster. 

Some property managers use this as a tool to keep everything organized in one central location. 

Is your business ready for a disaster? Even a simple pipe burst can cause a lot of damage and headache. With a SERVPRO® Emergency READY Profile it can have the critical information to minimize damages, provide the resources for the employees of the company, and provide property details and information. This is a FREE service that we provide to commercial properties. 

Make an appointment today to get started!

If the unthinkable happens, call your local SERVPRO of Gainesville, Georgia at (770) 536-1010 seven days a week 24/7 to help you avoid the cost and hassle of secondary damages.  We will help make it "Like it never even happened."

Make A Plan

9/13/2018 (Permalink)

Disaster can strike at any time and without warning, be as prepared as you possibly can, make a plan today. Your family may not be together if a disaster strikes, so it is important to know which types of disasters could affect your area.  Know how you’ll contact one another and reconnect if separated. Establish a family meeting place that’s familiar and easy to find.

Step 1: Put together a plan by discussing these 4 questions with your family, friends, or household to start your emergency plan.

  1. How will I receive emergency alerts and warnings?
  2. What is my shelter plan?
  3. What is my evacuation route?
  4. What is my family/household communication plan?

Step 2:  Consider specific needs in your household.

As you prepare your plan tailor your plans and supplies to your specific daily living needs and responsibilities. Discuss your needs and responsibilities and how people in the network can assist each other with communication, care of children, business, pets, or specific needs like the operation of durable medical equipment. Create your own personal network for specific areas where you need assistance.  Keep in mind some these factors when developing your plan:

  • Different ages of members within your household
  • Responsibilities for assisting others
  • Locations frequented
  • Dietary needs
  • Medical needs including prescriptions and equipment
  • Disabilities or access and functional needs including devices and equipment
  • Languages spoken
  • Cultural and religious considerations
  • Pets or service animals
  • Households with school-aged children

Step 3: Fill out a Family Emergency Plan

Download and fill out a family emergency plan or use them as a guide to create your own.

Step 4: Practice your plan with your family/household

Electrical Fires

9/12/2018 (Permalink)

Most electrical fires are caused by faulty electrical outlets and or old, outdated appliances. The following are the most common reasons why electrical fires happen:

  1. Old electrical sockets and unsafe appliances

Appliances that are old and overused and those that fall short of modern safety standards are the worst culprits. Frayed electrical cords, self-jointed wires, and worn out sockets that are not properly grounded are major causes of fires. They become ready outlets for directing heat and fire to carpets, rugs, curtains and combustible plastic. Older appliances draw more power than the wall sockets can handle.

  1. Using light fixtures that exceed the permissible wattage

A very common cause of fires is plugging lights, lighting appliances and bulbs into electrical sockets that cannot handle higher wattage levels. Antique lighting appliances may have defective wiring that makes the appliance unstable by overheating. Decorating lights with colored paper and cloth shades can increase the risk of fire when the material or fabric heats up.

  1. Using multiple appliances plugged into an extension cord

Unrestricted use of extension cords is a major fire hazard. The risk of fire increases when your TV, home theatre, computer and other appliances are all plugged into a single extension cord. This creates excessive power load on a single socket which may not be designed to handle that load. In the recent past classes at Middle School and East Pennsboro Elementary School had to be cancelled owing to a power outage caused by damaged wiring. So, there is a social and economic cost to damaged wiring!

  1. Locating portable heaters near combustible materials

Portable space heaters that use coils are potentially dangerous when they are positioned carelessly near curtains and rugs and adjacent to beds and cloth covered furniture. The chances of inflammable material coming into contact with the red-hot coils increase the risk of fire.

  1. Wiring that becomes defective with the passage of time

Over a period of time you add more electrical appliances such as wide screen televisions, home theatre, microwave oven, refrigerator and air conditioners. The outdated home wiring cannot handle the increased power load. Older wiring tends to heat up quickly and catches fire. If the breaker boxes are themselves defective, they cannot prevent overheated electrical panels from catching fire.

Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage?
Call Us Today – SERVPRO of Gainesville 770-536-1010

How Long Was Your Power Off While You Were Away?

9/12/2018 (Permalink)

If the coin is still on top of the ice - the freezer did not thaw out.

You might think a power outage occurring while you were away wouldn’t be that big of a deal, but if you leave food in your refrigerator or freezer that you plan to eat when you return, you’ll want to know whether your power went out, and if it did, whether your food warmed up enough and for long enough to spoil.

There is a simple solution to tell if you may need to consider disposing of food in your refrigerator and freezer. You can simply leave a coin on a cup of ice in your freezer before you leave.

Just fill up a cup of water, put it in the freezer until it’s solid, then add a coin on top and stick it back in the freezer

If the coin is at the bottom of the cup when you return, then there was a power outage that went on for long enough for the water to melt, causing the coin to fall through. When the power comes back on, the coin will be stuck in the frozen water at the bottom. If the coin is still at the top when you get home, the power stayed on or went out just temporarily.

Because water takes a very long time to melt in an insulated freezer, a quarter at the bottom of the cup will tell you that your food is almost definitely spoiled, since the power would have had to be off for quite some time.

What Should Be Discarded After A Fire?

9/12/2018 (Permalink)

Food that has been damaged by heat, smoke, water toxic fumes or chemicals is not safe to use.

Items You Should Throw Away After a Home Fire

A home fire in Gainesville, Georgia is a frightening event that can change your life. Standing in your home among your damaged belongings, you probably ask yourself which items you need to throw away. The fact is that high heat and fire damage render some of your personal belongings useless and can even cause them to be dangerous if used. 

Food

Food that has been damaged by heat, smoke, water, toxic fumes or chemicals is not safe to use. Exercise caution and discard if in doubt. It’s recommended to throw away these items:

Fresh food, such as produce, meat, poultry, cheese, eggs and milk
Food in cardboard boxes or foil wrap
Food in canisters, such as spices, flour, and seasonings
Canned food
Any open packages of food

Check your refrigerator to see if it was able to keep your food cold and if soot was able to penetrate it. If your fridge was turned off for more than four hours or if you can detect soot, discard all food. Frozen food can be safe to use if it still has crystals on it; however, the safe bet is to toss it.

Medicine and Cosmetics

Inspect medicines and cosmetics that were near high heat for soot, dust, chemicals and signs of damage. If anything is warped due to the exposure to heat, don’t even think about keeping it. You’re on the safe side if you simply get rid of all medicine and cosmetic items. 

Clothes and Textiles

Some of your clothes and textiles might be able to be cleaned and disinfected by an experienced fire restoration company that has the proper tools and knowledge. Anything that is burnt needs to be thrown away, though. Baby and children clothing need some extra care and attention as you don’t want to risk your little one’s health. 

Exercise caution with the items mentioned above. It might be smart to just throw away food, medicine and cosmetics for the sake of your health. Always bear in mind that high heat and fire damage are dangerous, and even if any of these items seem to be in good condition, your eyes might be tricking you.

Call SERVPRO of Gainesville for more information on restoring your home after fire damage, 770-536-1010.

Restoring Your Hall County Commercial Property After A Water Damage Event

9/10/2018 (Permalink)

Flooding and water damage events at Hall County 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 Gainesville

SERVPRO of Gainesville 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.

ERP - Emergency Ready Profile - Is Your Business Prepared to Handle Any Disaster?

9/10/2018 (Permalink)

As a homeowner you always want to make sure you have emergency contacts close by in case anything unexpected happens. What if you are a homeowner but also a business owner?  SERVPRO realizes that you might not think about the unexpected things that might happen to your business; fire, flooding, tornado damage, etc. 

That's why we have our Emergency Ready Program available to you! Our ERP, Emergency Ready Profile is the best way to reduce business interruption following a disaster, plan for it now! As many as 50% of businesses may never recover following a disaster, according to the latest industry research. Of the businesses that survive, most of them had a preparedness plan in place. Pre-planning can serve as an insurance policy aimed at peace of mind. 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.


The SERVPRO Emergency Ready Profile assessment can be done at your facility with no cost to you. This means there is no need to allocate funds, giving you a great value at no cost. A concise Profile Document that contains only the critical information needed in the event of an emergency. – It will only take a little time to complete and will not take you away from current projects. But it will save a lot of time if ever needed. A guide to help you get back into your building following a disaster. This can help minimize the amount of time your business is inactive by having an immediate plan of action. Having an ERP establishes your local SERVPRO® Franchise Professional as your disaster mitigation and restoration provider. You will have a provider that is recognized as an industry leader who is close by. The ERP identifies of the line of command for authorizing work to begin. This saves time, so we can begin the work of mitigating the damage which can save you both time and money. The ERP provides facility details such as shut-off valve locations, priority areas and priority contact information. Having a quick reference of what to do, how to do it and who to call provides solutions in advance of an emergency so that during the emergency you are “Ready for whatever happens.”  Give us a call today at 770-536-1010 and set up your ERP!

A/C Leaks - How to Prevent

9/10/2018 (Permalink)

A/C Air Handlers are often located in attics, if the drain line clogs and the wet drip pan overflows this can result in damage to the rooms below.

In the south our A/C systems are often working overtime to keep us cool.  Occasionally your A/C system will have a leak and depending on the location of your air handler this can result in water damage to your home. Water leakage from a central air conditioner is almost always related to the condensate drip pan and drain system, located at the indoor air handler inside the house. Since the A/C evaporator coil inside the air handler can generate over 20 gallons of condensation on a humid day, the potential for substantial water damage in the event of a malfunction is clear. How can you avoid A/C water leaks?

Check the condensate drip pan regularly – This large flat pan located underneath the indoor air handler catches condensate as it drips off the A/C evaporator coil. Collected condensate drains out of the pan into a drain line usually plumbed into the household sewer line or discharges somewhere outside the house. If it’s cooling season and the air conditioner is running, the drain pan will likely be wet. However, you should not notice standing water in the pan. This usually indicates a clogged or sluggish condensate drain line and an impending damaging overflow. Also, look around the perimeter of the pan for signs of leakage such as wet spots or puddles. Drip pans may crack or corrode with age, seeping small amounts of water gradually. Contact a qualified HVAC service provider if you see standing water or evidence of leakage.

Consider an automatic shut-off switch – To avoid water damage from the condensate system, an automatic shutoff switch detects excess standing water in the drain pan and turns off power to the air conditioner before an overflow occurs.

Get regular A/C service – Mold growth inside the wet drip pan is a frequent cause of clogs in the drain line. Annual preventive maintenance by a qualified HVAC technician includes inspecting the condensate drain system, cleaning the pan and installing time-release biocide tablets in the pan to inhibit mold and algae growth all season long.

If you have water damage from your HVAC system call SERVPRO of Gainesville at 770-536-1010

Emergency Storm Cleanup in Gainesville and Hall County

9/10/2018 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Cleanup and Restoration

  • 24 Hours Emergency Service
  • Faster to Any Size Disaster
  • Highly Trained Water Restoration Technicians
  • A Trusted Leader in the Water Restoration Industry
  • Locally Owned and Operated

SERVPRO of Gainesville has experience restoring homes affected by storms and flooding. We can respond immediately with highly trained technicians who employ specialized equipment and techniques to restore your Hall County home or business back to pre-storm condition.

Why Choose SERVPRO of Gainesville?

We're Faster to Any Size Disaster

When a storm hits your Hall County home or business, you need help immediately. Our quick response will help prevent secondary damage and help reduce restoration costs.

We're Highly Trained Storm Damage Specialists

We specialize in flooding and storm damage restoration, the cornerstone of our business. We have extensive water damage and storm restoration training that allows us to get your home back to normal quickly.

  • Water Damage Restoration Technician
  • Applied Structural Drying Technicians

We Have the Resources to Handle any size Storm or and Disaster

Major storms and flooding events can overwhelm many restoration companies. On the other hand, SERVPRO of Gainesville can access resources from 1,700 Franchises across the state and country and even utilize Disaster Recovery Teams for major storms and disasters.

Locally Owned Company with National Storm Resources

SERVPRO of Gainesville is locally owned and operated—so we live and work here too and are proud to be part of the Hall County community.

Call us 24/7 at 770-536-1010.

Types of Mold

9/10/2018 (Permalink)

There are many different types and subspecies of mold that may grow in a house. If you have found mold in your home or smell an odor that leads you to suspect the presence of hidden mold, you should contact a certified hygienists service that provides testing, clean-up, and restoration services. Skilled professionals can determine whether mold growth poses a risk to any member of the household and limit your family's exposure. 

• Aspergillus is a common genus of mold found on food such as bread or potatoes and in HVAC systems. This type of mold is highly aerobic and depends on the presence of oxygen to thrive.
• Cladosporium is black or green mold growth that often forms on air ducts, toilets, or painted surfaces in high humidity or when excessive moisture is present.
• Black mold is a type of mold that is known to cause problems for residents in homes with substantial growths. The scientific name for black mold is stachybotrys chartarum. This type of mold should be identified and handled only by mold experts. 
• White mold tends to be in the early stages of growth. A reputable service should be able to prevent this type of mold from continuing to grow into mature colonies. White or light grey molds on plants are mildew – a related type of fungus.

These are just a few of the major types of mold growth that you may see in a home in the wake of water damage. You may attempt to identify visible mold in your home, but when it comes to determining the real risk posed by mold and eliminating its presence, you should rely on trained hygienists and remediation experts in Gainesville, Georgia. These specialists can provide accurate results with either microscopy or culturing and determine the type or subspecies of mold and the best way to eliminate it from your home.

Call us at SERVPRO of Gainesville, 770-536-1010 for more information. 

Restoring Your Hall County Commercial Property After A Fire

9/10/2018 (Permalink)

When a fire breaks out at your Gainesville, GA, business.

Cleaning up afterward can be a challenge, even if the fire did not impact every part of the building. Smoke damage, water damage, discoloration of walls and floors and a lingering smell of smoke might all be problems you face after a fire. If you are currently dealing with the aftermath of a fire at your business, there are a few important steps to take that may help you get back to operational status faster. 

Talk to the Fire Department 

Once the fire is extinguished, you can approach the firefighters and ask a few important questions. While they might not be able to answer all your questions, you can make several inquiries, such as: 

• What started the fire
• Which parts of the building were affected
• Who to contact to get a copy of the fire department’s report 

Knowing as much as you can once the fire is contained or extinguished can help you plan cleanup efforts with more efficiency. 

Inspect the Building 

Work with your insurance company to take stock of soot damage, water damage from fire hoses and how many rooms were affected by flames. Inspecting the building can help you gauge how much it may cost to fix and whether any rooms have safety issues because of the fire. Remember to include interior walls, windows and doors in the inspection. 

Removing Smoke Odors 

Once fire damage is cleaned up, smoke damage may cause unpleasant odors to linger. Your fire damage checklist should include contacting a restoration company who specializes in removing these odors. These professionals have access to machines and cleansers that can clean the air and deodorize your building. Getting rid of smoke odors can be challenging and calling in a professional at the outset can ensure the odors are neutralized permanently. 

After a fire, your Gainesville, GA business may be affected in many ways. However, taking action such as calling for professional smoke damage repair and staying on top of insurance reports can help you get your company up and running again.

Guide to Commercial Fire Sprinklers

9/10/2018 (Permalink)

Installing a fire sprinkler system at your business in Gainesville, GA was an easy decision. You trust this ingenious invention to save your property and potentially your life. But have you ever wondered how the sprinklers really work? What happens in the case of accidental activation?

How Fire Sprinklers Work

The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) sets codes and standards for sprinklers and installation. Codes require that new construction commercial buildings are fitted with a sprinkler system. If you have an older building, a trained contractor can retro-fit a system at your property.

  • There are several types of systems that can be installed depending on the type of building. The most popular type used in commercial properties is the wet pipe system. Other types include dry, pre-action, foam and deluge.
  • In a wet pipe system, a series of fire-resistant pipes are fitted in the walls or ceilings. The pipes are filled with pressurized water at all times.
  • In an emergency the sprinklers attached to the pipes activate based on the temperature in the air. A fire sprinkler does not turn on from smoke as a typical smoke alarm does. Fire suppression results from water being forcefully pushed from the pipe. All sprinklers in the building do not activate at once, only in rooms where the high temperature triggers a response.

How To Manage Accidental Activation

On rare occasion sprinklers may accidentally activate and dump gallons of water into your business. Know how to prevent and deal with a fire sprinkler cleanup situation.

  • Prevent accidental activation by properly maintaining the sprinkler system. Regularly inspect the sprinklers for leaks and the pipes for adequate pressure.
  • If a sprinkler accidentally goes off, turn off the main water source. Contact a fire and water restoration specialist to contain and repair the water damage. Call your insurance agent and inquire whether this event is covered in your policy.

Protect your business from fire damage in Gainesville, GA, with smoke alarms and a functional fire sprinkler system. Although rare, if an accidental activation occurs act fast to prevent secondary water damage. 

Severe Weather - Be Prepared

9/10/2018 (Permalink)

Severe weather can happen anytime, anywhere. Each year, Americans cope with an average of:

  • 10,000 severe thunderstorms
  • 5,000 floods or flash floods
  • 1,000 tornadoes
  • 2 land falling deadly hurricanes

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

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

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

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

Build an Emergency Supply Kit:

  • Water (one gallon per person per day)
  • Food (non-perishable 3-day supply)
  • Manual can opener
  • Battery operated radio, preferably a NOAA Weather Radio
  • Flashlight and extra batteries
  • First aid kit
  • Whistle to signal for help
  • Clothing
  • Dust masks or bandanas
  • Plastic sheeting, garbage bags and duct tape
  • Wrench or pliers to turn off utilities
  • Hygiene items
  • Important documents; copies of insurance policies, identification and bank account information
  • Cash
  • Fire extinguisher
  • Matches in a waterproof container

NOTE:  Statistics gathered from www.stormready.noaa.gov

Keep your HVAC System to Reduce the Chances of Microbial Growth

9/10/2018 (Permalink)

Mold in HVAC (heating, ventilation and air conditioning) systems can cause serious health problems. When the furnace or air conditioner is turned on, microscopic mold spores can blow out of the air ducts and circulate through the air, where they are easily inhaled.

Keeping your Ducting and the Intake clean is vital to reducing the amount of contamination your HVAC system has.

If you see visible mold, do not disturb it. You can inadvertently spread the mold infestation throughout your home. When mold is disturbed, the mold can release microscopic mold spores which become airborne and can circulate inside your home.

What to Do:

  • Stay out of affected areas.
  • Turn off the HVAC system and fans.
  • Contact SERVPRO for mold remediation services.

What Not to Do:

  • Don’t touch or disturb the mold.
  • Don’t blow air across any surfaces with visible or suspected mold growth.
  • Don’t attempt to dry the area yourself.
  • Don’t spray bleach or other disinfectants on the mold.

About Our Mold Remediation Services

SERVPRO specializes in mold cleanup and restoration, in fact, it’s a cornerstone of our business.  Our crews are highly trained restoration professionals that use specialized equipment and techniques to properly remediate your mold problem quickly and safely.

If You See Signs of Mold, Call Us Today SERVPRO of Gainesville, 770-536-1010

Preparing for Holiday Travel

9/10/2018 (Permalink)

The Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s holidays are quickly approaching. When leaving Gainesville for vacation, few people consider prepping their homes against water damage. You go through your checklist of turning off the coffee pot and stove and locking all the doors, but what happens if you have a leak and need a water pipe repair while you are away? A broken pipe can do a lot of damage, especially if it is left unattended for several days. 

Prepping Your Home

Before leaving for an extended vacation, check your home for leaks. Examine the pipes under the sink and the water heater for any cracks or rust. Inspect the hoses that connect to any appliances. Insulate any exposed pipes if you are leaving in the winter. A pipe that burst due to freezing needs water pipe repair immediately. Ask a neighbor, friend or family member if they can check in on your home periodically. If no one can check on your home, turn off the main water and drain the pipes. 

Preventing Floods

It is important to not only prep your home to prevent damage from a leak but also from a storm. Make sure your gutters are cleaned and water can flow freely through them. Check your sump pump. Clear out any debris you see. Test it by filling the sump pit and turning on the pump. Check your window seals and your roof for any leaks. All of these checks are especially important if any heavy rains or storms are expected in your area.

Returning from a vacation to find your house flooded can be devastating. Standing water can cause real damage to your home. A simple water pipe repair can escalate into a big problem if no one is there to address the issue. Take the time to prep your home against intruding water before you leave. That way you can enjoy your time away without worries.

If you have water damage call SERVPRO of Gainesville at 770-536-1010.

Is it time to replace the battery in your smoke detector?

9/7/2018 (Permalink)

When should you replace the batteries in your smoke detector?

It's a great habit to replace the battery in your smoke detector annually.

But did you know that smoke detectors lose their effectiveness over time? The US Fire Administration says that most smoke detectors today have a life span of about 8-10 years. At that point, the entire unit should be replaced. When you replace the unit, write the date purchased on the inside with a sharpie to have on record.

A smoke detector is an essential component of your home's safety equipment and having at least one smoke detector means that your surroundings are safer. That’s great, but you just need to take the necessary steps to keep your smoke detector in proper working order and that doesn't necessarily mean doings a whole home smoke detector replacement, but rather checking and replacing their batteries. Generally your smoke detector will let you know if the battery is low. If your smoke detector keeps chirping or there is a blinking red light you might need to change the battery. The smoke detector red light could also indicate that your system is over 10 years old and needs to be replaced. A hard wired smoke detector with a red blinking light could indicate that there’s a problem with the wire connection. If you’re not sure it might be a good idea to do a quick search on the internet to find out. 

How to prevent mold growth

9/7/2018 (Permalink)

Mold is often hidden in wall cavities where long term leaks may go undetected for some time.

The key to preventing and stopping indoor mold growth is to control excessive moisture and condensation. Keeping susceptible areas in the home clean and dry is critical. In general, mold will not grow indoors without water, dampness or excessive moisture.

The three main factors that contribute to condensation of water on building surfaces:

  • Relative Humidity: Condensation occurs when the air is saturated with water and it cannot hold any more moisture. For example, steam generated from bathroom showers or from cooking can fill up the air with moisture, which will then condense into drops of water on cooler surfaces, such as mirrors and windows. Where possible, localized sources of humidity, such as clothes dryers, should be directly vented to the outdoors. To lower indoor humidity during warm, humid weather, air conditioners and/or dehumidifiers should be used. In chronically damp areas such as basements or crawlspaces, it is often recommended that dehumidifiers be used to maintain humidity levels below 60 percent.
  • Temperature: Warm air holds more moisture than cold air. Condensation occurs when warm humid air comes into contact with a cold surface and the moisture condenses into water. This can often be seen on single-pane windows, where water condenses and then runs down, causing the wood frames and sills to rot and the wall under the windows to blister. Condensation can occur on exterior walls, particularly north-facing walls, if they are not properly insulated. Other chronically cold surfaces, such as cold-water pipes, should be covered with insulation to help prevent condensation.
  • Poor Ventilation: Indoor humidity can build up if there is not enough ventilation and exchange of indoor and outdoor air. Where there is little or no air movement, such as behind dressers and cabinets, surfaces can remain cooler than surrounding areas, which can lead to increased condensation and mold growth. It is recommended that the area be ventilated, and the occupants use exhaust fans (vented to the outdoors) to remove moisture from high-humidity areas, particularly in bathrooms, kitchens and laundry areas. Furniture should be moved slightly away from walls so that air can freely pass behind it. Air should be allowed to circulate between rooms and regularly ventilate to remove humid air. Fans should be used as needed.

Other things that can be done are to clean and repair gutters regularly, make sure the ground slopes down and away from the home’s foundation and keep air conditioner drip pans and drain lines clean. In addition, in air-conditioned buildings in hot and humid climates, vinyl wall coverings on the interior sides of exterior walls should not be used, as these materials can trap moisture, resulting in mold growth underneath them.

In the case of floods or leaking pipes, any standing water should be promptly removed, and water-damaged materials should either be dried out and cleaned or removed and replaced. Porous materials that are wet for more than 48 hours are likely to produce mold growth and should be discarded. In instances where the water damage is extensive, it is recommended that professional help.  If you’ve had water damage call SERVPRO of Gainesville at 770-536-1010.

Mold in Crawlspaces

9/7/2018 (Permalink)

Mold can be found on the floor joist and in insulation in crawlspaces.

In the humid south, moisture is constantly present in the air. Combining moisture with a dark and undisturbed area, such as a crawlspace, will often lead to mold growth.

Crawlspaces are rarely bothered by homeowners as they are usually small, dark, closed off, and house various bugs or other unwanted critters. When we avoid crawl spaces however, we prevent air circulation and sunlight in the area. The unbothered area is an ideal place for mold growth because moisture is not evaporated, and the temperature is kept relatively constant.

Mold thrives in areas that are moist and kept at a temperature ranging from 60 to 80 degrees. A crawl space ends up being an ideal place for mold growth due to its environmental conditions.

Considering you don’t regularly go into your crawl space, and it isn’t open to the rest of your home, you may think a little mold is nothing to worry about. Unfortunately, mold in these areas can still affect your and your family’s health.

Mold spores are tiny and easily released into the air. Spores can slip through cracks, be pulled in from air conditioning systems, or even float through open doors or windows. The mold spores can cause adverse health effects from allergic reactions to infections when breathed in on a regular basis.

Concerned about mold in your crawlspace? Call SERVPRO of Gainesville at 770-536-1010.

Storm Season: Protecting Your Garage

9/4/2018 (Permalink)

This is the type of damage a strong storm can do to your garage door.

We are currently in the peak of storm season when tropical storms and hurricanes are popping up regularly.  But what if you don't live near the coast?  Is there still a threat during storm season?  The answer is YES!  In the south, with high temperatures and humidity, storms can be extremely dangerous.  When planning to protect your home one of the most vulnerable areas is your garage.  Your garage is susceptible to high winds and flooding.  Here are a few tips to storm-proof your garage:

  • When purchasing a garage door look for one with a high wind-resistance rating.  If a storm with very strong winds or a tornado comes through and your garage door is breached the winds can batter your home.  This can lead to water coming in and causing costly damage.  For areas prone to tornado's it is recommended that you invest in a garage door that can withstand 130 mph or higher winds.
  • When installing your garage door consider installing a bracing system.  This will reinforce the integrity of the door by anchoring the door to the walls and floors and into each hinge.
  • Make sure to do proper maintenance to your garage door.  Repair any breaches or holes that would allow wind to get through the garage door.  Also make sure to check the weather stripping and mechanisms for proper functionality.
  • Do you have windows in your garage?  Make sure they are secure and their weather stripping is in proper condition.  Having wrought-iron window protection also greatly helps in protecting the glass from flying debris.
  • Install flood vents and proper drainage.  You can have a trench drain installed to divert water, and flood vents inside the garage can drain water getting through before levels rise and cause damage.

At SERVPRO of Gainesville we believe in being prepared for any emergency.  We can handle any of your storm or water damage emergencies.  Call us at 770-536-1010 24/7 for your emergency needs.

Fire Extinguiser 101

9/4/2018 (Permalink)

Fire extinguisher - P.A.S.S method of use

Not only is it smart to keep fire extinguishers in your home or business, it’s also the law in many states.

It's important to make sure you have the right types of fire extinguishers on hand to put out common fires.

Getting started with fire extinguishers

The first thing to do when choosing a fire extinguisher is to decide which rooms in your house need one. You should keep at least one on each level of your house. Make sure you keep fire extinguishers handy where fires are more likely to start, like in the kitchen and garage.

Understanding fire extinguisher classes

There are four classes of fire extinguishers – A, B, C and D – and each class can put out a different type of fire.

  • Class A extinguishers will put out fires in ordinary combustibles such as wood and paper
  • Class B extinguishers are for use on flammable liquids like grease, gasoline and oil
  • Class C extinguishers are suitable for use only on electrically energized fires
  • Class D extinguishers are designed for use on flammable metals

Multipurpose extinguishers can be used on different types of fires and will be labeled with more than one class, like A-B, B-C or A-B-C.

Purchasing your fire extinguisher

Now that you know how many extinguishers you need and what types to get, you can head to the hardware store. Look for fire extinguishers that you can easily lift. Larger extinguishers may pack more power, but you must be able to use it properly.

Learning how to use your fire extinguisher

Once you've made your purchases, familiarize yourself with the fire extinguisher directions so you’ll be prepared in case you need to put out a fire. Typically, fire extinguishers are easy to use in the case of a fire. Most of the types operate using the P.A.S.S. technique:

  • Pull the pin on the fire extinguisher to break the tamper seal.
  • Aim the fire extinguisher low, with the nozzle pointed at the base of the fire. 
  • Squeeze the handle of the fire extinguisher to release the extinguishing agent. 
  • Sweep the nozzle from side to side while pointed at the base of the fire until it is extinguished. 
  • If the fire re-ignites, repeat the last 3 steps.

Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage?
Call Us Today – SERVPRO of Gainesville 770-536-1010

What Are All These Green Machines

9/4/2018 (Permalink)

Pictured are air movers.

When water damage has occurred, water can be absorbed into the drywall (sheetrock), baseboards, subflooring, etc. Drying these surfaces requires high-velocity air movers to accelerate the release of absorbed water into the air. Dehumidifiers are necessary for removing this excess moisture to help protect property and create conditions for efficient drying.

TYPES OF AIR MOVERS

There are two types of industrial air movers we use at SERVPRO of Gainesville. Both types vary by direction and speed of airflow:

  • Axial: Axial air movers blow large amounts of air in a wide space. These air movers are usually larger and produces a higher airflow. Axial air movers can only move air horizontally, but they are ideal for drying walls and floors, cooling equipment and ventilation.
  • Centrifugal: Centrifugal air movers are compact models. They draw air from different sources and direct it all to one spot. You might use a centrifugal air mover in hard-to-reach areas such as closets, cabinets and crawl spaces.

TYPES OF DEHUMIDFIERS

There are two types of industrial dehumidifiers we use at SERVPRO of Gainesville. Both types vary by direction and speed of airflow:

  • Refrigeration: Electric refrigeration dehumidifiers are the most common type of dehumidifiers. They work by drawing moist air over a refrigerated evaporator with a fan. The cold evaporator coilof the refrigeration device condenses the water, which is removed, and then the air is reheated by the condenser coil. The now dehumidified, re-warmed air is released into the room. This process works most effectively at higher ambient temperatures with a high dew point In cold climates, the process is less effective. Highest efficiency is reached above 20 °C (68 °F) and 45% relative humidity.

Desiccant: This process uses a special humidity-absorbing material called a desiccant, which is exposed to the air to be conditioned. The humidity-saturated material is then moved to a different location, where it is "recharged" to drive off the humidity, typically by heating it. The desiccant can be mounted on a belt or other means of transporting it during a cycle of operation. Because of the lack of compressor parts desiccant dehumidifiers are often lighter and quieter than compressor dehumidifiers. Desiccant dehumidifiers can also operate at lower temperatures than compressor dehumidifiers as the unit lacks coils which are unable to extract moisture from the air at lower temperatures.

If you’ve had water damage at your home or business call SERVPRO of Gainesville 770-536-1010 for emergency service.

September Is National Preparedness Month

9/4/2018 (Permalink)

Are you ready?

SERVPRO Industries, Inc. is once again proud to be a member of the National Preparedness Month Coalition and is committed to helping the U.S. Department of Homeland Security in their efforts to promote the importance of preparedness planning.

It is no secret that many families and individuals are looking to cut back on spending. But with the frequency of disasters, both natural and manmade, can you afford not to be prepared? Preparedness doesn’t have to cost an arm and a leg. September is National Preparedness Month, and we are asking you to help your family and friends prepare for whatever may come. Here are a few tips* on how you can protect those that matter to you without spending a fortune.

  • Make a Plan.Work with you family and neighbors to make an emergency plan for the types of disasters that affect your area. Make sure everyone in your family understands where to go and what to do in case of an emergency. You can download Family Emergency Plan templates ready.gov/make-a-plan
  • Update Contact Information.Having accurate records for family, friends and neighbors will help you stay in contact and possibly help those in need. Make sure updated contact information is posted in visible places throughout your house and workplace.
  • Check Your Policy.Review your insurance policy annually and make any necessary changes – renters, too! When a disaster strikes, you want to know that your coverage will get you back on your feet.
  • Make a Ready List.You may not need all of the items in ready-made preparedness kits. Choose the essentials that fit your needs and budget. Don’t forget to keep supplies at work and in your car. Sample Ready Lists can be found at ready.gov/document/family- supply-list
  • Plan Your Purchases.You can save money by thinking ahead. Don’t buy preparedness items just before a storm when they’re expensive and supplies will be in high demand. Buy items at the end of the season when you can get good deals.
  • Shop Sales.Shop at sales and used goods stores. Buy preparedness items throughout the year, instead of all at once, and you won’t notice the cost as much.
  • Make Sure it Keeps.Store water in safe, containers. You don’t need to buy expensive bottled water, just make sure your water containers are disinfected and airtight
  • Request a Gift.We all get things we don’t need. Suggest preparedness supplies as gifts from your friends and family. It just might save your life.
  • Trade a Night Out.Trade one night out to fund your 72-hour kit. Taking a family of four to the movies can cost upwards of $80. Just one night staying in could fund your Ready kit.
  • *The best tip: start now.Take small steps toward preparedness and before you know it, you will be Ready!

Document Restoration

9/4/2018 (Permalink)

What would you do?

In the aftermath of disaster, some of your most valued contents—documents, photographs, and books—could be lost forever. As a leader in the restoration industry, SERVPRO knows that timely mitigation is the key to recovering damaged possessions. With years of experience and state-of-the-art technology, SERVPRO’s restoration professionals will help you recover your paper goods before it is too late.

Our Document Restoration Facility:

  • Innovative: we use the latest vacuum freeze-drying method, as well as gamma irradiation technology for sterilizing
  • Secure: managed by HIPPA Master-certified technicians, under 24/7 surveillance
  • Digital: we use a computerized inventory system for digitizing your documents
  • Flexible capacity - we can accommodate large commercial losses or small residential jobs
  • Full Service: we offer a range of services including drying, cleaning/disinfecting, re-jacketing, digitizing, and deodorization

Our Technology

The SERVPRO document restoration team uses innovate vacuum freeze-drying techniques; in fact, we use the same freeze-drying methods used by the Library of Congress to dry valuable historic documents and books. Our vacuum freeze-drying process is the only method approved by the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) and the General Services Administration (GSA).

Types of content:

  • paper documents
  • books and magazines
  • manuscripts and files
  • photographs, films, negatives, and microfiche
  • x-rays
  • blueprints and maps
  • parchment

Document Cleaning and Disinfecting

In many water damage situations, like sewage or flood water, documents will be exposed to bacteria, viruses, pesticides, or other harmful chemicals. Our team uses a gamma irradiation process to safely and effectively sterilize your documents.

Digitizing Services

In the digital age, converting your paper files and photos to digital formats can have an invaluable impact on your business or home. With the help of SERVPRO’s restoration professionals to digitize your documents, you can save storage space and have access to your records at the touch of a button. And perhaps most important of all, you’ll have digital copies of your valuable documents that can’t be lost in a flood or fire.

Need your valuable documents restored? Call SERVPRO of Gainesville 770-536-1010

Winter Is Coming, Are You Prepared

9/4/2018 (Permalink)

Freezing pipes can be prevented.

Water expands when it freezes. In pipes, the expansion can cause ruptures. The damage often occurs not at the point where a pipe has frozen, but between the freeze and a faucet. As the ice blocks the pipe completely and expands, the water pressure in the pipe increases. Too much pressure will rupture the pipe.

In northern regions of the United States, pipes are typically protected in insulated spaces, reducing the risk of freezing. In southern climates, where subfreezing temperatures are less common, pipes may not be as well protected. Pipes that run through exterior walls are particularly at risk, but those that run through uninsulated attics and crawlspaces can also freeze. In either region, extended subfreezing weather, cracks in walls or foundations and entry points for pipe and cable put pipes at risk. Poor insulation increases the vulnerability. Outside the home, hose spigots are also at risk.

Take steps to prevent frozen pipes:

Many of the repairs and improvements you can make to minimize the risk of frozen pipes are basic energy-conservation practices.

  • Locate and seal cracks and openings in the walls, attic, basement or crawlspace.
  • Weather strip and caulk around crawlspace doors and basement windows.
  • Make sure your home is properly insulated. Pay particular attention to areas where pipes are located.
  • Insulate unprotected pipes and don't leave any gaps in the insulation. Pipe sleeves simplify the process. Keep the pieces tight against each other and seal the slits and joints with duct tape.
  • Install thermostat-controlled, UL-listed heat cables. Use cables that are appropriate for your pipe and follow the manufacturer's instructions for installation. Some manufacturers recommend unplugging the cables at the end of the season.
  • Install storm windows over basement windows or replace the old windows with energy-efficient alternatives.

Have Questions about Water Damage?

Call us Today – SERVPRO of Gainesville 770-536-1010

Summer Grilling and Firework Safety

8/17/2018 (Permalink)

Summer is synonymous with barbecues, parades, and firework displays.  Along with all the festivities are plenty of visits to emergency rooms, especially during July. Each year, an average of 230 people are injured badly enough to require medical treatment after firework-related incidents, according to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission. In addition to causing injury, fireworks are also responsible for thousands of house fires each year with millions of dollars in property damage.

There is nothing like firing up the grill during the summer months? A backyard barbecue can become dangerous if safety precautions aren't considered. Your local SERVPRO of Gainesville professionals want you to have an enjoyable and safe summer. Consider the following tips to ensure your summer celebrations are disaster-free!

  • Propane and charcoal BBQ grills should only be used outdoors.
  • The grill should be placed away from the home, deck railings, and out from under eaves and overhanging branches.
  • Keep children and pets away from grill area.
  • Keep your grill clean by removing grease or fat buildup from the grills and in trays below the grill.
  • Never leave your grill unattended.
  • When using a charcoal grill, let the coals completely cool before disposing in a metal container.
  • Anyone using fireworks or standing nearby should wear protective eyewear.
  • Do not try to re-light or handle malfunctioning fireworks. Keep a bucket of water nearby or a water hose to fully extinguish fireworks that don't go off or in case of fire.
  • Children should never pick up leftover fireworks as they may still be active.
  • The safest way to enjoy fireworks is to attend a public display conducted by trained professionals.

Tips and information provided by the National Fire Protection Association

Our Highly Trained Restoration Specialists can restore your Gainesville Home

8/13/2018 (Permalink)

We are an IICRC Certified Firm

SERVPRO of Gainesville is an IICRC firm. The Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) creates the standards for the restoration industry and provides training and certification to restoration companies. IICRC Certified Firms have the right to display the IICRC Certified Logo.

IICRC Certified Firms must

• Present accurate information to consumers and conduct business with honesty and integrity.

• Require a technician on all jobs who has been formally trained and passed all required tests.

• Require a continuing education program to keep technicians up-to-date on the latest changes in the industry.

• Maintain liability insurance to protect all parties in the event of an accident.

• Maintain a written complaint policy and agree to Better Business Bureau or similar arbitration to resolve disputes, and accept the conclusions and recommendations of arbitration.

The IICRC Develops The Standards For The Restoration Industry

The IICRC has been the driving force in establishing the main industry standards and reference guides for professional carpet cleaning, water damage restoration and mold remediation. These IICRC standards take years to develop and require the coordination of experts in the field: manufacturers, industry organizations, insurance professionals, training schools, contractors, and public health professionals.

Every five years, the standards are reviewed and updated. The water damage restoration field changes rapidly with advancements in technology and science, and therefore the standards must evolve to keep pace.

About SERVPRO of Gainesville

SERVPRO of Gainesville is a locally owned franchise that 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 and we are an IICRC Certified Firm. We believe in continuous training: 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.

Hall County 24 Hour Emergency Water Damage Service

8/13/2018 (Permalink)

Commercial water loss

SERVPRO of Gainesville provides 24 hour fire and water damage restoration service in Gainesville, Georgia and Hall County.

SERVPRO of Gainesville 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 – Gainesville 770-536-1010

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 Gainesville 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 Gainesville

SERVPRO of Gainesville 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.

Hall County Smoke and Soot Cleanup

8/13/2018 (Permalink)

Smoke and Soot Damage Can Cause a Pervasive Odor in Your Hall County Home.

Smoke and soot is very invasive and can penetrate various cavities within your home, causing hidden damage and odor. Our smoke damage expertise and experience allows us to inspect and accurately assess the extent of the damage to develop a comprehensive plan of action.

Smoke and soot facts:

  • Hot smoke migrates to cooler areas and upper levels of a structure.
  • Smoke flows around plumbing systems, seeping through the holes used by pipes to go from floor to floor.
  • The type of smoke may greatly affect the restoration process.

Different Types of Smoke

There are two different types of smoke–wet and dry. As a result, there are different types of soot residue after a fire. Before restoration begins, SERVPRO of Gainesville will test the soot to determine which type of smoke damage occurred. The cleaning procedures will then be based on the information identified during pretesting. Here is some additional information:

Wet Smoke– Plastic and Rubber

  • Low heat, smoldering, pungent odor, sticky, smeary. Smoke webs are more difficult to clean.

Dry Smoke– Paper and Wood

  • Fast burning, high temperatures, heat rises therefore smoke rises.

Protein Fire Residue– Produced by evaporation of material rather than from a fire

  • Virtually invisible, discolors paints and varnishes, extreme pungent odor.

Our Fire Damage Restoration Services

Since each smoke and fire damage situation is a little different, each one requires a unique solution tailored for the specific conditions. We have the equipment, expertise, and experience to restore your fire and smoke damage. We will also treat your family with empathy and respect and your property and personal belongings with care.

If  you have questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage?
Call Us Today – SERVPRO of Gainesville 770-536-1010

For Immediate Service in Hall County Call SERVPRO

8/13/2018 (Permalink)

We provide immediate service for Gainesville and all of Hall County

SERVPRO of Gainesville provides 24-hour emergency service and is dedicated to being faster to any-sized disaster in Gainesville, Georgia and Hall County. We can respond immediately to your emergency and we have the expertise to handle your restoration or cleaning needs.

  • 24-Hour Emergency Service
  • Faster to Any-Sized Disaster
  • Highly Trained Restoration Technicians
  • A Trusted Leader in the Restoration Industry
  • Locally Owned and Operated
  • Advanced Restoration and Cleaning Equipment 

Have Questions? Call Us 24/7 – Gainesville 770-536-1010

Residential Services

Whether your Gainesville, Georgia home needs emergency flood damage or your upholstery cleaned, you can depend on us.  Our technicians have extensive cleaning and restoration training and can make your property look its best. Learn more about our residential services:

  • Water Damage Restoration
  • Fire Damage Restoration
  • Mold Remediation
  • Storm Damage Restoration
  • Cleaning Services
  • Building/Reconstruction Services

Commercial Services

There's never a convenient time for fire or Water damage to strike your Gainesville, Georgia commercial property. Every hour spent cleaning up is an hour of lost revenue and productivity. When the need arises for professional cleaning or emergency restoration services we have the training and expertise to respond promptly with highly trained technicians to get your property back to business.

Learn more about our commercial services: http://www.SERVPROgainesville.com/commercial-restoration-cleaning

  • Commercial Water Damage Restoration
  • Commercial Fire Damage Restoration

Hall County Smoke and Soot Cleanup

7/19/2017 (Permalink)

Smoke and Soot Damage Can Cause a Pervasive Odor in Your Hall County Home.

Smoke and soot is very invasive and can penetrate various cavities within your home, causing hidden damage and odor. Our smoke damage expertise and experience allows us to inspect and accurately assess the extent of the damage to develop a comprehensive plan of action.  

Smoke and soot facts:

  • Hot smoke migrates to cooler areas and upper levels of a structure.
  • Smoke flows around plumbing systems, seeping through the holes used by pipes to go from floor to floor.
  • The type of smoke may greatly affect the restoration process.

Different Types of Smoke

There are two different types of smoke–wet and dry. As a result, there are different types of soot residue after a fire. Before restoration begins, SERVPRO of Gainesville will test the soot to determine which type of smoke damage occurred. The cleaning procedures will then be based on the information identified during pretesting. Here is some additional information:

Wet Smoke – Plastic and Rubber

  • Low heat, smoldering, pungent odor, sticky, smeary. Smoke webs are more difficult to clean.

Dry Smoke – Paper and Wood

  • Fast burning, high temperatures, heat rises therefore smoke rises.

Protein Fire Residue – Produced by evaporation of material rather than from a fire

  • Virtually invisible, discolors paints and varnishes, extreme pungent odor. 

Our Fire Damage Restoration Services

Since each smoke and fire damage situation is a little different, each one requires a unique solution tailored for the specific conditions.  We have the equipment, expertise, and experience to restore your fire and smoke damage.  We will also treat your family with empathy and respect and your property with care.

Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage?
Call Us Today – (770) 536-1010

Hall County 24 Hour Emergency Water Damage Service

7/19/2017 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Gainesville provides 24 hour fire and water damage restoration service in Hall County

SERVPRO of Gainesville 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 - (770) 536-1010

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 Gainesville 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 Gainesville

SERVPRO of Gainesville 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.

Does Your Hall County Home Have a Mold Problem?

7/19/2017 (Permalink)

In Hall County, mold can spread through a home in as little as 48 hours.

Microscopic mold spores naturally occur almost everywhere, both outdoors and indoors. This makes it impossible to remove all mold from a home or business. Therefore, mold remediation reduces the mold spore count back to its natural or baseline level. Some restoration businesses advertise “mold removal” and even guarantee to remove all mold, which is a fallacy. Consider the following mold facts:

  • Mold is present almost everywhere, indoors and outdoors.
  • Mold spores are microscopic and float along in the air and may enter your home through windows, doors, or AC/heating systems or even hitch a ride indoors on your clothing or a pet.
  • Mold spores thrive on moisture. Mold spores can quickly grow into colonies when exposed to water. These colonies may produce allergens and irritants.
  • Before mold remediation can begin, any sources of water or moisture must be addressed. Otherwise, the mold may return.
  • Mold often produces a strong, musty odor and can lead you to possible mold problem areas.
  • Even higher-than-normal indoor humidity can support mold growth. Keep indoor humidity below 45 percent.

If your home or business has a mold problem, we can inspect and assess your property and use our specialized training, equipment, and expertise to remediate your mold infestation.

If You See Signs of Mold, Call Us Today – (770) 536-1010

Restoring Your Hall County Commercial Property After A Water Damage Event

7/19/2017 (Permalink)

Commercial Water Damage Events Present Unique Challenges

Flooding and water damage events at Hall County 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 Gainesville

SERVPRO of Gainesville 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.

EMERGENCY READY PROFILE

4/26/2016 (Permalink)

The Best Way to Reduce Business Interruption Following a Disaster is to Plan For it NOW.

As many as 50% of businesses may never recover following a disaster, according to the latest industry research. Of the businesses that 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. 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.

The SERVPRO® Emergency READY Profile Advantages:

  • A no cost assessment of your facility. – This means there is no need to allocate funds, giving you a great value at no cost.
  • A concise Profile Document that contains only the critical information needed in the event of an emergency. – It will only take a little time to complete and will not take you away from current projects. But it will save a lot of time if ever needed.
  • A guide to help you get back into your building following a disaster. – This can help minimize the amount of time your business is inactive by having an immediate plan of action.
  • Establishes your local SERVPRO® Franchise Professional as your disaster mitigation and restoration provider. – You have a provider that is recognized as an industry leader and close by.
  • Identification of the line of command for authorizing work to begin. – This saves time so we can begin the work of mitigating the damage which can save you time and money.
  • Provides facility details such as shut-off valve locations, priority areas and priority contact information. – Having a quick reference of what to do, how to do it and who to call provides solutions in advance of an emergency so that during the emergency you are “Ready for whatever happens.”

Call SERVPRO of Gainesville today, (770) 536-1010, to get started!

SUMMER SHOWERS

4/5/2016 (Permalink)

In the event of water damaged caused by flooding our team is well equipped and well trained to make it "Like it never even happened." Here are a few tips to help get the situation under control until we get there:

1. Remove as much excess water as possible by mopping and blotting.

2.Remove and prop up wet upholstery cushions to help even out the drying process.

3. Try and wipe up the excess water from any wood furniture after removing all tabletop items

4. Do not leaves books, newspapers, magazines or other colored items on any flooring to avoid possible staining. 

Call SERVPRO of Gainesville in the event of water damage. (770) 736-1010

2013 Best of North Georgia

3/23/2016 (Permalink)

Thank you Hall County for voting SERVPRO 2016 Best of North Georgia's Carpet Cleaning company. We appreciate your support!

Check out our local Gainesville Times for a complete list of our voted on winners!

Happy St Patrick's Day

3/17/2016 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Gainesville is always wearing green! 

Warmer Weather

3/2/2016 (Permalink)

Spring Cleaning Just Ahead!

Time for Spring Cleaning!

Let us help! Call us today (770) 536-1010 for help with:

  • Duct Cleaning - improve your home's air quality and reduce dust circulation through your HVAC system and home.
  • Carpet Cleaning - help increase the life of your carpet and reduce future cleanings with a deep restorative cleaning and top it off with a stain and soil protectant.
  • Upholstery Cleaning - give your furniture a refreshing look with a deep clean and stain extraction.
  • Rug Cleaning - remove stains and odors from your rugs to improve appearance.

SERVPRO of Gainesville looks forward to hearing from you soon to assist in your spring cleaning needs!

Party Time Blues

2/10/2016 (Permalink)

Give SERVPRO of Gainesville a call today for the after party carpet cleaning! (770) 536-1010

Superbowl Sunday

2/1/2016 (Permalink)

Denver or Carolina? Halftime show or the commercials? Regardless of your investment this Sunday get your home ready for the big party! Call us today for an estimate to get your carpet cleaned (770) 536-1010.

Emergency Alert

12/30/2015 (Permalink)

12/30/2015 - Flash Flood Warning for the Gainesville area until 2:15 PM EST. Avoid flood areas and check local media for up to date information.

FIRE DO's AND DON'Ts

12/21/2015 (Permalink)

What To Do After a Fire

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

  • Keep hands clean so as not to further soil upholstery, walls and woodwork.

  • Place clean towels or old linens on rugs, upholstery and carpet traffic areas.

  • If electricity is off, empty freezer and refrigerator and prop doors open.

  • Clean and protect chrome with light coating of petroleum jelly or oil.

  • Wash houseplants on both sides of leaves.

  • Change HVAC filter.

  • Tape double layers of cheesecloth over air registers.

What NOT To Do After a Fire

  • Don't attempt to wash any walls or painted surfaces or shampoo carpet or upholstery without contacting us.

  • Don't attempt to clean any electrical appliances that may have been close to fire, heat or water without consulting an authorized repair service.

  • Don't use any canned or packaged food or beverages that may have been stored near the fire, heat or water.

  • Don't turn on ceiling fixtures if ceiling is wet. The wiring may be damaged.

  • Don't send garments to an ordinary dry cleaner. Improper cleaning may set smoke odor.

Fire Prevention and Safety Tips for Your Business

12/18/2015 (Permalink)

Protect yourself and your business from any unforeseen hazards like fires. Here are some tips to protect your business from fire damage.

Fire Extinguishers and Business Safety
One way to protect yourself, your employees, and your business from fire is to have proper fire extinguishers handy on the premises. Fire extinguishers can help you eliminate a small fire from spreading into a fire you cannot control.  Once you buy all the necessary extinguishers, perform a training session with all employees on the proper use of the extinguisher and how to check if it is charged. Place them in a highly visible area for quick and easy access. The most common place for extinguishers are break rooms and kitchens.

Smoke Detectors and Fire Alarms
The best protection from a fire is early detection.  Smoke detectors provide the early warning you need to stop a fire in its tracks. Be sure to change the batteries every three months and test them every month. Place one smoke detector in every room and fire alarms on every floor. Like everything else in the world, smoke detectors have a life expectancy. Replace your smoke detectors every ten years.

Overhead Sprinklers Prevent Fire Damage
One important tool for putting out a fire is water.  Overhead sprinklers can douse a fire as soon as they detect it.  If you have equipment and paper that is sensitive to water, simply have them installed in the areas that are prone to fire outbreaks.

Your business is your livelihood. You do not want to lose it to a fire. Taking the proper precautions can save you a lot of time, effort and money in the long run. Use these tips to help you take preventive measures to protect your business.

Merry Christmas

12/15/2015 (Permalink)

Many community organizations have local food or toy drives to assist families during the holiday season.  Anything can help make someone’s holiday a little brighter. 

Wishing you all the happiness of the holiday season! May you be blessed with peace, love, and joy. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year from the SERVPRO of Gainesville family.

Smoke Detectors Have a Shelf Life

12/11/2015 (Permalink)

It's a great habit to replace the battery in your smoke detector annually.

But did you know that smoke detectors lose their effectiveness over time? The US Fire Administration says that most smoke detectors today have a life span of about 8-10 years. At that point, the entire unit should be replaced. When you replace the unit, write the date purchased on the inside with a sharpie to have on record.

A smoke detector is an essential component of your home's safety equipment and having at least one smoke detector means that your surroundings are safer. That’s great, but you just need to take the necessary steps to keep your smoke detector in proper working order and that doesn't necessarily mean doings a whole home smoke detector replacement, but rather checking and replacing their batteries. Generally your smoke detector will let you know if the battery is low. If your smoke detector keeps chirping or there is a blinking red light you might need to change the battery. The smoke detector red light could also indicate that your system is over 10 years old and needs to be replaced. A hard wired smoke detector with a red blinking light could indicate that there’s a problem with the wire connection. If you’re not sure it might be a good idea to do a quick search on the internet to find out. 

Do you enjoy that fresh baked apple pie or evergreen candle scent during the holidays?

12/10/2015 (Permalink)

Before Lighting – here are some tips on candle burning safety. 

  • Trim the wick to ¼ inch each time before burning. Long or crooked wicks can cause uneven burning, dripping or flaring.

  • Always use a candleholder specifically designed for candle use. It should be heat resistant, sturdy, and large enough to contain any drips or melted wax.

  • Burn candles in a well-ventilated room.

  • Place the candleholder on a stable, heat-resistant surface. This will also help prevent possible heat damage to counters and table surfaces and prevent glass containers from cracking or breaking.

  • Keep the wax pool clear of wick trimmings, matches and debris at all times.

  • Avoid drafts, vents or air currents. This will help prevent rapid or uneven burning, sooting, and excessive dripping.

  • Follow the manufacturer’s recommendations on burn time and proper use.

Chimney Tips to Keep Your Family Warm…and Safe

12/7/2015 (Permalink)

What causes chimney fires?

The build-up of creosote along the chimney lining walls can facilitate the start of a chimney fire. All fires create soot and residue build-up, especially wood burning fireplaces and stoves. This build-up is caused by the unburned materials in the smoke accumulating along the chimney walls and creating a sticky substance that can easily catch fire. The smoke from the fire contains a substance similar to tar and when the temperatures within the chimney are below 250 degrees Fahrenheit, the substance will condense along the chimney surface. When the temperature drops below 150 degrees Fahrenheit, the substance turns into a dark, sticky substance that is also highly flammable.

A chimney that is dirty, blocked or is in disrepair can inhibit proper venting of smoke up the flue and can also cause a chimney fire. Nearly all residential fires originating in the chimney are preventable.

Maintenance - Good maintenance is a very important step in preventing chimney fires!

  • Have your chimney checked annually by a qualified chimney professional.
  • Burn only well seasoned hardwoods.
  • Start fires with clean newspaper or dry kindling – Gasoline or kerosene should never be used to start a fire.

  • Never burn cardboard boxes, wrapping paper or your Christmas tree.

  • Keep the area in front of the fireplace clear of paper and debris. It can be tempting during the holidays to place decorations close to the fireplace, but keep them at a safe distance.

  • If your fireplace doesn't have a glass door, use a wire mesh screen.

  • Install a chimney cap.

  • Install a carbon monoxide detector.

  • Have your chimney sweep ensure that your chimney has an appropriate liner.

  • Following a violent storm, earthquake, flood or lightning strike, have your chimney inspected for damage - inside and out.

Prevention - Remember prevention is your best defense against fire. If you have a wood or coal stove, be sure it is installed at least 36 inches away from the wall. Keep combustible materials well away from the stove and chimney connector. Place an approved stove board under the unit to protect the floor from heat and hot coals which might drop out.

Clean Your Gutters

12/4/2015 (Permalink)

The first signs of fall are unmistakable—the air gets a little crisp and the leaves on the trees begin to change color. It’s a gorgeous sight, but it’s also a sign of a whole lot of work ahead. After all, those leaves will soon fall off those trees and many of them will end up in your gutters. It’s important to make sure all that debris is gone before winter arrives.

While it’s still dry out, the leaves won’t cause much of a problem. However, as soon as you get your first heavy rain storm, the problems will start to pop up. If your gutters are filled with leaves, the rain can’t drain out properly. When this happens, your gutters will overflow, and the water could cause water damage to walls, soffits, fascia, siding, basements, and even your foundation.

If water does back up in your gutters, the debris and pooling water can start to eat away at the gutter materials, which can cause holes and leaks. Once you have holes, it might not be a simple fix—you could end up having to replace your gutters entirely.

How often you clean your gutters depends largely on where you live. If you live in an area without any trees around, you can probably get away with cleaning your gutters just once a year, since they aren’t filling up with leaves and other debris as quickly. Of course, if there is a tree close to your house that does lose its leaves, you might have to clean them more often.

Interested in a career?

12/2/2015 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Gainesville is looking for enthusiastic, motivated people to join our crew.  Check out our open positions in the "About Us" section of our website.

Winterizing Pipes

11/30/2015 (Permalink)

Winterize your home before the cold sets in:

  • The main valve - Know where the main water valve is located and confirm it turns easily. Don't wait until an emergency to find out.
  • Pipe insulation - Insulate plumbing in drafty and unheated areas such as garages, outdoors, unfinished basements, and crawlspaces.
  • Faucet drip - Leave a trickle of water running on faucets located on exterior walls to prevent pipes from freezing
  • Open cabinets - Keep vanity doors under sinks open to allow heat inside.
  • Garage door - Keep your garage door closed, when able, to maintain maximum heat.
  • Cap bibs - Place insulation caps on hose bibs.
  • The thermostat - Leave the termostat set no lower than 55 degrees F.

Prevent Christmas tree fire

11/24/2015 (Permalink)

Safety Checklist

  • Get a fresh tree whose needles are green and don't easily fall off
  • Cut 1-2 inches from base of trunk before placing the tree in the stand
  • Place the tree at least 3 feet away from heat sources
  • Add water daily to prevent drying
  • Do not connect more than three strands of mini-string sets
  • Check holiday lights for frayed wires or excessive water
  • Always turn lights off on a tree before going to bed or leaving your home
  • Ged rid of a tree when its needles start dropping
  • Check that your smoke alarm is working properly

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