Recent Posts

Pick the Correct Fire Extinguisher!

2/4/2020 (Permalink)

Here's are some tips for choosing the appropriate Fire Extinguisher:

Class A:
This is the most common extinguisher and can be used to put out fires in ordinary combustibles such as cloth, wood, rubber, paper, and many plastics.

Class B:
Used on fires involving flammable liquids such as grease, gasoline, and oil.

Class C:
Designed for fires involving appliances, tools or other equipment electrically energized or plugged in.

Class D:
For use on flammable metals; often specific for the type of metal in question. These are typically found only in factories working with these metals.

Class K:
Intended for use on fires that involve vegetable oils, animal oils or fats in cooking appliances. These extinguishers are generally found in commercial kitchens but are becoming more popular in the residential market for use in kitchens.

SERVPRO of Suffolk/Smithfield/Franklin is taking to the streets, every hour of every day, proving that whenever there is a house full of water or an office full of smoke, there is a van full of clean! It's always best to call our office directly!

757-934-8404

Winter Heat Hazards

2/4/2020 (Permalink)

Winter is the same anywhere you go...lower temperatures & shorter days.  Often times we use alternative heat sources like fireplaces, portable space heaters, and wood-burning stoves to make our homes cozy.  Did you know that heating equipment is a leading cause of home fire deaths?

Keep the following safety tips in mind to help reduce your risk of a heating-related fire:

  • Keep anything flammable at least three feet away from heating equipment, like the furnace, fireplace, wood stove, or a portable space heater.  Have a three-foot "kid-free zone around open fires and space heaters.
  • Make sure the fireplace has a sturdy screen to stop sparks from flying into the room.  Ashes should be cool before putting them in a metal container.  Keep the container a safe distance away from your home.
  • Remember to turn portable heaters off when leaving the room or going to bed. 
  • Always use the right kind of fuel, specified by the manufacturer, for fuel-burning space heaters.
  • Have heating equipment and chimneys cleaned and inspected every year by a qualified professional.
  • Have a qualified professional install stationary space heating equipment, water heaters or central heating equipment according to the local codes and manufacturer's instructions.
  • Test smoke alarms monthly.

Call SERVPRO of Suffolk/Smithfield/Franklin for all fire-related needs, 757-934-8404.

Tips to Recover After a Fire

2/4/2020 (Permalink)

It is all too easy to think that it can't happen to you, there is no way you could be the victim of a devastating fire.

The National Fire Prevention Association (NFPA) reports that there were 365,500 home fires in the United States in 2015.

That's an average of over 30,000 fires per month. These fires resulted in over 2,000 deaths, 11,000 injuries and over $7 billion in damage.

If you have suffered the unthinkable, here are some tips to help you put the pieces back together.

Get Medical Treatment - Getting everyone out of the house during a fire or other emergency can be a harrowing experience. During your evacuation, you may suffer injuries.

No matter how minor your injuries may seem, be sure to have them checked.  This will help reduce any chances of infection.

Get Emotional Help - This is something that is equally as important as the physical healing you may need. A disaster such as a fire can affect people differently.

Some of the emotions you and your family may experience include fear, shock, disbelief, grief, anger, guilt, anxiety and/or depression.

Remember, children also process traumatic events differently than adults, so be prepared to provide them with additional support if necessary. Your local Red Cross can help find you the help you need.

Rebuilding Your Home - It is extremely important to never enter your home after a disaster until inspectors have determined that it is safe to do so.

Get in touch with your insurance agent to help determine the extent of the damage and get a claim open immediately so you can begin to put the wheels in motion for rebuilding or replacing your home.

Finding Professional Contractors - No matter what repairs are needed for your home, always be sure to use reputable contractors to complete the work. Any contractors you choose should have extensive experience repairing homes after a fire or disaster.

Your local chamber of commerce is a good place to start locating the professionals best suited for your needs.

If you have suffered a fire in your home, the professionals at SERVPRO of Suffolk/Smithfield/Franklin are only a phone call away. We will jump into action immediately to help you and your family back on track. 757-934-8404

Commercial Water Damage Facts

2/4/2020 (Permalink)

When it comes to water damage to a residential or commercial property, there is more than meets the eye.

Here are some water facts and figures as they pertain to the restoration industry:

1. Water is capable of dissolving a variety of different substances. In fact, water is known as the “universal solvent” because it dissolves more substances than any other liquid.

2. A sheet of drywall standing upright with its edge sitting in a ½” of water can wick water up to 6 inches in less than three hours.

3. Mold typically begins to grow in 24 to 48 hours in an untreated moist environment.

4. A good indication of a failing hot water heater is a puddle of water underneath it, indicating a slow leak, or rusted or corroded fittings on the top of the heater. If you don’t investigate the leak ASAP, you may quickly flood your home because water heaters are under a great deal of water pressure.

5. There are three categories of water contamination defined in the restoration industry:

  • Category One – Water from a clean water source with no substantial risk of causing sickness or discomfort. Examples include water from a broken water supply pipe or an overflowing bathtub.
  • Category Two – Water that has a significant degree of chemical, biological, and/or physical contamination. Examples include water from aquariums, dishwasher or clothes washer leaks, and water entering the structure from below grade. Discharged Category One water that sits untreated more for more than 24 hours becomes Category Two.
  • Category Three – Water emanating from a grossly unsanitary source or carrying disease-causing agents. Examples include discharges from sewer or septic systems/pipes and floodwaters. Discharged Category One water that sits more for more than 48 hours becomes Category Three. Discharged Category Two water that sits more for more than 24 hours becomes Category Three.

6. Controlling pathogenic microorganisms during a restoration project may require the use of chemical agents that act as biocides. The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has defined three levels of biocidal activity:

  • Sanitizers – Designed to reduce the number of microorganisms.
  • Disinfectants – Designed to destroy or inhibit the growth of microorganisms but not necessarily their spores.
  • Sterilizer – Designed to destroy all microorganisms (fungi/molds, bacteria, viruses, etc.) and their spores.

Call SERVPRO of Suffolk/Smithfield/Franklin for all your water damage needs, 757-934-8404.

Signs of Water Damage in Commercial Building

2/4/2020 (Permalink)

When water infiltrates your masonry, time is of the essence. The longer a leak lasts, the more damage it does. If you see any of these signs of a leak, you should get your masonry evaluated by a professional.

1. Bulging, spalling, and cracking

These are all exterior signs of a leak that is degrading the masonry. Once water has leaked past the mortar joints, it can wear away at the masonry. After the water has begun corroding the steel beneath, this damage will become much worse as a result of rust jacking.

2. Rust staining

This is a late-stage sign of water infiltration. You’ll find this commonly in concrete structures, where the red rust stain is visible on a lighter surface. When you see rust staining, it’s a sign that water has penetrated not only the masonry but the steel structure beneath. Water is causing the corrosion of the steel, which leaves a stain on the masonry surface.

Steel will expand as it rusts, creating further damage to your building’s structure. We call that rust jacking.

3. Mold and musty odors

After the water has made it past the exterior, you may notice signs of water damage inside the building. One of these signs could be a sign of mildew or mold. Mold is not always easy to detect.

4. Interior damage

Other interior signs that can tip you off to a water leak are staining on interior walls and ceilings. You may also see cracked drywall or peeling wallpaper as water begins to saturate your interior walls.

Keep water from damaging your building

At SERVPRO of Suffolk/Smithfield/Franklin, we help restore and rehabilitate the exterior of commercial buildings so you don’t have to worry about what happens when water leaks into your building. We can help you prevent it from happening and even if water damage does happen we can always make it "Like it never even happened." 

Call 757-934-8404 today!

Mold Growth

2/3/2020 (Permalink)

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 moist 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 any signs of mold call SERVPRO® of Suffolk/Smithfield/Franklin today at 757-934-8404.

Safety Tips When You Suspect Mold

2/3/2020 (Permalink)

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 that 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 of Suffolk/Smithfield/Franklin 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 of Suffolk/Smithfield/Franklin 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 Suffolk/Smithfield/Franklin 757-934-8404

What is that smell?

2/3/2020 (Permalink)

As various materials burn, the smoke produced travels throughout the structure, leaving odorous residues and deposits on 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 periodically resurfacing odors.

From top to bottom... 
SERVPRO of Suffolk/Smithfield/Franklin provides specialized services that rid your home or business of offensive odors left by fire or smoke damage. Any restorable item in affected areas will be professionally cleaned and deodorized, including furniture, draperies and upholstery, electronics, art, flooring, walls, ceilings, HVAC air ducts and more.

Search and Destroy 
SERVPRO of Suffolk/Smithfield/Franklin professionals do NOT cover up lingering odors with a fragrance, they seek out and remove the sources of the odor. Ask us to explain the various deodorization methods available and which will work best for you.

If you or a customer suffer fire damage -- or some other accident -- and require deodorization services, contact SERVPRO of Suffolk/Smithfield/Franklin, 757-934-8404. 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."

Winter Warnings vs. Advisories

1/6/2020 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Suffolk/Smithfield/Franklin wants to help you to be prepared for the upcoming winter weather.  The National Weather Service will issue advisories and warnings.  It is important that you understand these and know how to prepare for winter and to be Winter Safe.

  • Blizzard Warning- Winds or gusts to 35 mph or more for at least 3 hours and lots of falling or blowing snow reducing your visibility to less than ¼ mile.
  • Winter Storm Warning- 6” or more of snow, or a combination of winter weather types with major impacts.
  • Ice Storm Warning- ¼” or more of ice accumulation.
  • Winter Weather Advisory- Less than 6” of snow, Less than ¼” of ice accumulation from freezing rain, Visibilities reduced in blowing snow with winds less than 35 mph, Combinations of these.
  • Wind Chill Warning- Wind chills of -25°F or colder with winds of 10 mph or higher.
  • Wind Chill Advisory- Wind chills of -15°F to -24° with winds of 10 mph or higher.

SERVPRO of Suffolk/Smithfield/Franklin is here 24/7, 757-934-8404.

Winter Weather- Be Prepared

1/2/2020 (Permalink)

Cold weather can have a huge impact on your home or business if you are not properly prepared. Whether it is heavy rain, freezing temperatures, damaging winds, sleet or snow, all can cause serious property damage. While you can't control the weather, you can take steps to be prepared and help take the sting out of winter weather.

To help prevent costly damages due to weather, consider taking the following actions before the harsh winter weather hits.

Check your business property for downed tree limbs and branches. Weather such as wind, heavy rain, ice, and snow, can cause damage to the property as well as potential personal injuries.

Inspect property, especially walkways and parking lots, for proper drainage to alleviate flood hazard potential.

Inspect all handrails, stairwells, and entryways to address and correct potential slippery or hazardous areas. Install mats or non-slip surfaces and post caution signs where water could be present.

Roofs, water pipes, and gutters should all be inspected to ensure they are in proper order. Gutter downspouts should be directed away from your building. Clear gutters of debris that may have gathered during the fall. Leaves and other obstructions can lead to a damming effect, that can cause roof damage and interior water problems.

Protect water pipes from freezing by simply allowing water to drip when temperatures dip below freezing. If pipes are under a cabinet, leave cabinet doors open, allowing warm air to circulate around the pipes. If the building has outdoor faucets, consider shutting the water off at the main valve in the basement or crawl space. Once the valve is off, open the outdoor faucet to ensure it drains, preventing any remaining water from freezing in the pipe.

Ask your SERVPRO of Suffolk professional about completing an Emergency READY Profile (ERP) for your business. The ERP is a no-cost assessment to your facility and provides you with a plan to get back in business fast following a disaster.

SERVPRO of Suffolk/Smithfield/Franklin

757-934-8404