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Building a Defense Against Wind Damage

3/19/2018 (Permalink)

Commercial Building a Defense Against Wind Damage Here is a basement area where the flood water can be clearly seen.

You already know to protect your place of business against lightning and rain during thunderstorms in Chattanooga, TN but like many business owners, you’ve likely overlooked the threat that wind poses during severe weather conditions. The truth is, wind can do as much damage to your commercial building as other thunderstorm threats in a shorter amount of time. It can:

• Strip away shingles to cause a substantial roof leak
• Damage your roof with branches or downed trees
• Shatter windows

Fortunately, protecting yourself from this invisible threat is simple when you know the right steps to take.

Outdoor Cleanup

Your first step toward protecting your establishment from wind damage is to clean up the outside. That means replacing gravel and rock landscaping with something softer (like mulch or straw) or unmovable (like asphalt or concrete). Keep branches on trees around your building trimmed, and consider taking down any trees that are too close to the building or which already show signs of damage. Your local utility company may help out by pruning trees near power lines if you place a few calls. Furthermore, consider removing any loose outdoor furniture from courtyards, lounge areas and patios indoors when you hear a thunderstorm being forecast for your area to prevent the creation of flying debris.

Proper Inspections

Removing trees and branches sometimes isn’t enough to completely protect a roof, especially if it’s old or already has damage like missing shingles. Ensure your business is up to the next storm by investing in annual inspections by professional roofers who can identify and properly fix damaged roofs before they become a real issue, leading to a roof leak or much worse. Perform the same courtesy for your building’s windows and doors as well to prevent shattering and blow-ins during high-wind storms.

Taking these steps may not eliminate wind damage altogether; you might encounter a roof leak here and there or a crack in your window. But the right precautions help to make your business a safer place for you and your employees when strong winds blow in. Visit for more information on commercial storm damage. 

What All Business Owners Should Know About Mold

2/21/2018 (Permalink)

If you have recently had flooding in your business, you may worry about the mold growth that follows. Even after the water damage has subsided, the worry continues. With a basic understanding of mold and how it spreads through high humidity, you can feel confident in choosing a mold remediation specialist in Chattanooga, TN.

There are a few frequently asked questions about mold:

• What causes it?
• How dangerous is it?
• Can I handle it myself?
• How can I stop it?

If you, like other business owners, have these questions, you can find answers here.

What Causes Mold?

It’s a misconception to think that mold just shows up right after a flood. The truth is that mold is around us almost everywhere we go. However, these spores are usually too small to see and don’t cause trouble.

However, when the humidity level rises above 45 percent in an area, mold can grow and spread. That’s when you get the mold growth with which you may be more familiar. High humidity and water damage are two of the primary ways mold infiltrates a business.

How Dangerous Is It?

There is plenty of debate about the health effects of mold. In addition to any of those, mold can create a foul smell that drives customers away. If left alone long enough, it can even cause structural damage. That’s why it’s better to take care of the problem as soon as you detect mold.

Can You Handle It Yourself?

This problem is better left to the professionals. Much like you would not trust someone less experienced in running your business, you should trust a professional restoration crew in Chattanooga, TN to get rid of your mold problem.

How Can You Stop It?

The moment water builds up in your business, it’s time to spring into action. First, call a professional mold growth remediation specialist. Then, make sure to follow any instructions the professional gives while you wait. If the water is safe, you may start cleaning it up. However, you may need to leave black water alone.
Visit for more information on mold.

How to Use a Fire Extinguisher in a Commercial Setting

2/14/2018 (Permalink)

It is important that all members of your staff know how to properly use a fire extinguisher. A fire is the most common emergency a business must plan for according to OSHA. A small kitchen fire may be able to be contained with an extinguisher. They can also be used to help protect evacuation routes.

OSHA requires that employees be trained how to use these tools and how to determine when evacuation is the best choice by assessing the situation.


PASS is a simple training method that can help you and your employees remember the correct way to operate a fire extinguisher.

• Pull
• Aim
• Squeeze
• Sweep

You start by removing the pin. You next want to aim the spray nozzle at the base of the fire and squeeze the trigger on the handle. Use a sweeping motion while aiming the end of the nozzle at the base of the fire.


A small extinguisher is a great tool to reduce fire damage and potentially save lives by preventing fires from getting out of control, but their use is limited. Fire extinguishers are only effective on small fires. It is important for employees to know when to evacuate.

If a fire is too large, it is time to evacuate. If flammable solvents are involved, the fire can’t be reached from a standing position or is partially hidden by the ceiling or a wall, everyone should leave the building immediately, and leave the firefighting to the professionals in Chattanooga, TN.

If the room or office fills with smoke, don’t risk it. You may need some form of respiratory protection. Get out of the building. You need to be able to get within ten to fifteen feet of a fire for a fire extinguisher to be effective. If the radiated heat prevents you from getting close enough, the safest thing for you to do is follow the office evacuation plan.

Office fires may be more common than you think. It is important that you and your employees know how to safely act in various situations that involve fires.
Visit for more information on commercial fire damage.

Responsibly Using a Fire Extinguisher

2/7/2018 (Permalink)

By now, fire extinguishers have become staples in most disaster-ready homes and provide billions worldwide with a quick, straightforward way to respond to sudden blazes. Generally, if you’ve used one fire extinguisher, you’ll use them all, as they typically follow the same usage procedure known as PASS:

* Pull the pin to break the tamper seal
* Aim the nozzle at the bottom of the fire
* Squeeze the handle and release extinguisher chemicals
* Sweep the nozzle back and forth at the base of the fire until it’s extinguished

Knowing these steps can save you a ton of hassle with instances like the average kitchen fire in Chattanooga, TN but to really mitigate as much fire damage as possible, there are a few other things you need to take into account.

Choosing Your Extinguisher

The first thing you should always be aware of is that not every fire extinguisher is good for every job. For example, when dealing with a grease fire, you’ll need a class B extinguisher to really get the job done safely. It’s a good idea to research different extinguisher uses before deciding where to allocate these appliances around your home.

Emergency Services

Just because you have an extinguisher on your side doesn’t mean you won’t need emergency services. Ideally, you should have someone calling 911 as you attempt to extinguish the flames. This ensures you’re able to get the assistance you need in the event that your attempts are unsuccessful.

Furthermore, know when to leave the house. If the blaze becomes too large or your extinguisher runs out of juice, it’s time to get outdoors. You can pass over the firefighting responsibilities to emergency responders and work with a fire cleanup crew afterward to get your home back to normal again.

Keeping proper fire extinguisher handling tips in mind may be able to save your home and your family in the coming years. Be sure to discuss the above tips with every member of your family. Visit for more information on fire damage.

What To Do If Your Commercial Water Supply Line Bursts

1/19/2018 (Permalink)

The water supply line to your commercial property is vital for ensuring you have a clean business that your customers will want to visit. Unfortunately, sometimes accidents happen. If your water supply line bursts, you could find yourself with a large mess to take care of. Use these tips to help you get through the pipe burst cleanup process.

Shut Off the Water Supply

The first thing you need to do when you notice a burst pipe is to shut off the water supply. This may be found in several areas:

• Near the sink

• Behind the toilet

• In a basement or utility space

• At the main valve near your water meter

Clamp the Pipe Shut

Next, you’ll need to close off the burst in the pipe. Do this by applying a repair clamp to the area. While each package will have its own instructions, the process typically includes adding a rubber sleeve to the leak and then bolting a clamp over the sleeve. If you do not have a repair kit, you can use rubber from an inner tube or similar item with an adjustable hose clamp. This is only a temporary fix, so be sure to call a professional plumber as soon as you clamp the pipe to stop supply line leaking.

Visit SERVPRO of East Chattanooga for more information on commercial water cleanup.

Cleanup Process for Commercial Pipe Break

1/19/2018 (Permalink)

Beginning the Cleanup Process after a Pipe Break

Begin the pipe burst cleanup. If any electrical outlets or equipment were disturbed, shut off electricity to the area. Use a wet vacuum or sump pump to remove any standing water and then clean, sanitize and dry any affected areas and items.

Keep in mind that an area that doesn’t dry quickly enough can develop black mold and lead to further damages to your property. To ensure the area is properly cleaned, sanitized and dried, you should work with a water cleanup company in Chattanooga, TN, that is experienced with commercial pipe burst cleanup.

Our Technicians are certified in commercial and residential water damage cleanup. Visit SERVPRO of East Chattanooga for more information on commercial water cleanup.

Water Damage Stinks! Here’s What To Do About the Smell

1/19/2018 (Permalink)

Get Rid of Mildew Smells in the Carpet

One of the biggest culprits for lingering odors post-flood is carpets. If you decided not to replace your carpets after sewage loss, it may be the cause of that bad smell and quite possibly for any adverse health symptoms you or your loved ones have experienced. Some things you can do to get rid of any residual debris and flood water include:

• Completely dry the affected areas and then leave your windows open to allow the room to air out.

• Place dehumidifiers throughout the affected area. 

• Treat your carpet with a cleaning solution designed to kill mold growth and bacteria. 

• Pour baking soda over the areas your sprayed and leave it on the treated areas for some time, preferably overnight. Vacuum it up in the morning. 

If after thoroughly cleaning your carpets your home still smells like black water, clean the air.

Cleaning the Air after a Flood

1/19/2018 (Permalink)

The aftermath of a flood is no picnic, and even after all damaged materials have been removed and the ground floor has been thoroughly dried and cleaned, the smell of mold and sewage can linger for weeks or even months. If your home was recently in a flood, and you’re tired of your home reeking like mold growth and black water, your local City, State, flood restoration team has a few odor removal tips that may be of use to you. 

Steps for Cleaning the Air 

Cleaning the air is fairly simple and involves a few common household items.

• Cat Litter: Cat litter is designed to soak up odors, so place a little bit in each room. Change it out periodically to make sure that it absorbs as much of the residual odor as possible. 

• Vinegar: Place bowls of vinegar throughout your home, and in just a few days, your home will be smelling as fresh as it was pre-flood. 

• Baking Soda: In addition to using baking soda on your carpets, you can also use it to zap odors from the air. 

Mold growth can really stink up your home. To get rid of that bad smell, try utilizing the tips above from your Chattanooga, TN, water damage team.

Visit our site for more storm damage tips and information.

How To Clean Up a Broken Water Heater

1/19/2018 (Permalink)

Having a broken water heater in Chattanooga, TN can be dangerous on many levels. While the most obvious threat from a leaking water heater is water damage, the liquid could come into contact with power outlets if not detected quickly, adding fire and electrical hazards to the list of possible dangers. Because they are typically hidden in low-traffic areas of the home, a failed water heater may not be detected for several days, which causes problems to multiply. When dealing with water heater overflow, follow these clean-up procedures to make the process go smoothly.

1. Shut off the water source. If you do not turn off your water while you clean up, not only will it be useless trying to mop up the liquid, it also increases the risk that the water comes in contact with an electrical source. For safety reasons, this should always be the first step.

2. Clean up the water. For small areas, you can probably mop up water with old towels. If your leaking water heater went undetected for a while, you may have a more substantial mess that may require a sump pump or a trash pump.

3. Assess secondary damage. Because mold and bacteria grow best in warm, damp places, a broken water heater can lead to more secondary damage than many other reasons for flooding. The warm water creates an environment that favors mold growth, so it is important to carefully expect any flooring or sheetrock the water came in contact with.

4. Treat mold and disinfect the area. Use an antifungal treatment to remove any existing mold, and then use a disinfectant to thoroughly cleanse the area. Scrubbing the affected spot with bleach and clean water may discourage mold to grow.

Cleaning up from a leaking water heater in your Chattanooga, TN home goes beyond simply mopping up the water. Remember to thoroughly clean and disinfect any area affected by your broken water heater.

Three Ways to Prepare for a Storm

12/1/2017 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Three Ways to Prepare for a Storm Roof damaged when tree fell during a storm.

General Tips To Prepare for and Emergency

  1. Assemble an emergency kit that consists of food, water and basic disaster supplies designed to last at least 72 hours. Put the kit together well before severe weather strikes. Keep it in an easily accessible place, so you can grab it and go if you have to evacuate.
  2. Develop a family communication plan, since your family members will probably be at different places like work or school when a storm strikes. Therefore, you need to establish a way of getting in touch with each other before the storm strikes. Decide ahead of time how and where you will meet each other. Make sure everybody in the family knows everybody else's cell phone number.
  3. If you live in a storm-prone area, your community may have already established evacuation routes to leave the area safely and quickly. Learn about your community's evacuation plans and routes and make sure everybody in your family knows.