Recent Posts

Does your house have water damage that is unknown to you?

1/20/2020 (Permalink)

Here are 6 signs that you could or about to have some trouble and you might not even realize it.

Sloping floor, if you have a ball, roll it across the floor if it does not roll straight then that could be a sign of a joist that has failed. This could be from wood rot or just plain broken. A structural engineer can help form a plan on how to repair this. If it is from a water damage fixing the source of the issue is the first step, calling SERVPRO of West Forsyth County is the second to professionally dry the structure that is restorable.

Washing machine hoses that develop a knot or bubble on them can be a sign of a problem getting ready to happen. These hoses are under constant pressure and like tires on a car have to be replaced to ensure they do not develop a leak. This could lead to flooding of your wash room and adjoining rooms or hallways. Braided steel hoses will last longer and stand up to the pressure better than cheap plain rubber hoses.

Have you ever gone down to the basement and seen a white chalky dust on the cinderblock or brick? That is called efflorescence and it is harmless. However, it could be sign that water is seeping in and causing the calcium to be pushed out of the brick or cinderblock. Proper landscaping and drainage away from the home can help resolve this but if it goes on to long it could get more costly in digging out the foundation to seal the foundation against further water intrusion.  If you see this on your chimney that could be an indication of a cracked flue liner, which could allow toxic gases to be entering your home. It could also be caused by an internal wall leak causing that pressure to show the efflorescence. Have your chimney looked at by a professional chimney sweep.

We may have that one slow drain in the bathtub due to hair but if you notice all the drains in the house are slow call a plumber right away. This could be the precursor to sewer back up into the home. Make sure not to flush or use the water till you have determined that the main sewer line is clear of any obstructions.

While we are on the subject of possible sewer backups, another sign is unusual noises from the toilet. Gurgling or bubbling can indicate that a clog is building negative air pressure in the line. Call a plumber and get them to investigate the noises they can best determine a course of action.

Are you getting ready to touch up a wall that the paint is cracked, peeling or blistering? You may want to investigate further. SERVPRO of West Forsyth County was called to an 3rd story condo unit that had blisters on the wall and actually had water in the blisters. This was dues to a roof leak. The water followed the path of least resistance and was not readily noticed until the blisters showed up.  This need for a paint job could also be caused by a water leak in the piping of the wall. We have seen pin holes in the pipe that caused this kind of water damage also.

 If any of these become a problem you can't handle call SERVPRO of West Forsyth County 336-946-1131 it's best to call us directly. 

Recognizing fire hazards in the work place

1/8/2020 (Permalink)

Are you paying attention to some early warning signs or recognizing the potential for fire hazards? We have heard of crime dogs but being a fire hound can make your life much safer.  Here are 5 things to be on the lookout for around your home or office.

Overloaded plugs – with Christmas time coming and the extraordinary amount of electronics we have in our offices, it is easy to overload a two-plug circuit. Never daisy chain extension cords or multiplug surge protectors. Check the local fire code regarding extension cords, as they are typically not permanent solutions. Be sure to follow the guidelines on the manufacturer’s instructions for Christmas lights and decorations. Bob Vila has a list of 10 things not to plug into a power strip. If an item is not used on a consistent basis, consider leaving some of these energy vampires unplugged when not in use.

Everybody has a junk drawer, right? Do you store batteries in that drawer? If you do, they could potentially be a fire hazard. According to Battery Products you should never store loose batteries. The reason is the same reason you should not throw batteries in a trash can. Even low voltage batteries have the potential to start a fire. This video of a battery starting a fire was set intentionally, but think of all the metal and paper items in your junk drawer is it fire hazardous? Battery organizers help prevent batteries from being loose and the negative and positive ends from coming into contact. How does your company store batteries for tools that you use?

What is that smell? Do you come into a room turn a light switch and it smells like plastic melting? It may smell like a drill or a mixer that has run to long. Now if an appliance is new that may be normal, for a bit. But if that smell is coming from a wall switch or outlet it’s time to turn it off and call and electrician to check it out.

Speaking of turning on light switches, do the lights flicker? If one light is flickering it may be a loose bulb. But, when multiple lights flicker, that is not a good sign. Tighten or replace the bulb and if the flickering continues call an electrician.

Circuit breakers keep tripping? If your circuit breakers keep needing to be reset see tip number 1. But if overloaded plugs are not the case then you may need to replace the breaker. Usually these don’t need a lot of maintenance but age and use can eventually wear one out. Never attempt to do this with the main power on to the building.  If you are even a little unsure of how to do this call a professional and we don’t mean YouTube.

We hope that you never experience a fire in your home or office but if you do you can count on the expertise of SERVPRO of West Forsyth County to help you. It’s best to call us directly at 336-946-1131

Training makes our people, our people make the difference

1/6/2020 (Permalink)

ASE Certification is a widely known certification in the auto mechanic industry.  When you have someone working on your car you want to see that certification patch on their sleeve.  When you have a problem with your pipes you want a licensed insured plumber. In the Restoration industry SERVPRO has led the way with training and development.

Since 1967 SERVPRO has been setting the standard and continually improving the way disaster mitigation is done. In 1992 SERVPRO developed the National Training Center for restoration and mitigation. These classes are taught to Franchise Owners and Insurance Professionals. It has become an IICRC (Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification)  training facility that offers courses in such topics as, Fire Restoration, Water Restoration, Carpet Cleaning, Upholstery Cleaning and others.

Continuing education and certification courses in the most up to date technology and best use practices are also distributed through the SERVPRO network. Our people make the difference and their training makes them the most professionally skilled employees in the industry. We hope that you never have a disaster that affects your home or business, but if you do, we have the training and the experience to make it “Like it never even happened.”

It’s best to contact us directly 336-946-1131

Our equipment could save you money

12/30/2019 (Permalink)

Have you heard the cliché phrase, “pay me a little now or pay a lot more later”? it’s true with so many things in life. But never truer than in home maintenance. According to The Porch 88% of homeowners had to complete a major home improvement or remodel in 2018. These home repairs or remodels averaged almost $5000.00.  So, keeping up with your home’s maintenance is so very important.

Repairing a floor structure topped the list of costs.  Here at SERVPRO of West Forsyth County we have invested in our equipment and training our people, to not only mitigate the damages that you may be forced to repair in your home, but mitigate the costs associated with a sudden water damage.

For example, take the pictured floor mats that are pictured in this blog. If we are called quickly enough, it is possible for us to save wood floors assaulted by water damage.  Many homeowners think they got all the water up with a shop vac or mop. But water takes the path of least resistance. It could have gone behind the base board and wicked up by the insulation behind the walls.  We prepare for disasters with training and 52 years of experience with classes provided by our SERVPRO headquarters in Gallatin TN

If you suffer a water damage that you’re unsure of weather you need our services, call us. Our scope fees are reasonable and will go towards the final bill should you need our services. It is best to contact us directly 336-580-6351

Have you prepared your home for a storm?

12/20/2019 (Permalink)

Are you prepared for this season's winter storms? Before they happen, ensure that certain systems in your home are maintained to stand up to a storm.

Let’s start from the top down, how is the integrity of the roof? Do vents have cracks in the rubber seal? Are you missing shingles from high winds? Are they torn or frayed? Are the gutters free flowing and clear of leaves, sediment and debris? If these items have been checked and passed inspection then you’re are in good shape. If not, then you have some work to do, or else you better keep our number handy.

Storm doors and windows should have been caulked and winterized by now. Replace the rubber strip sweeper on storm doors and exterior doors. Not only does this save money on your electricity bill, it can prevent water from being driven into the house. Caulking the windows can help keep the elements out, but also check for water damage around the seals and frames of the windows. Is the flashing doing its job?

Sump pumps, and dehumidifiers.  These systems in your basement or crawl space help to keep it dry. If you can or have an emergency backup generator be sure that the sump pump (if you have one) is attached to that power source. If the power goes out in a storm this is one thing you want to ensure it is still running and doing its job. Basements are inherently damp and trap humidity; some folks use dehumidifiers to combat this problem. Ensure that the drain line is clear and runs freely. If you find that you are running it all the time you may want to check the walls for moisture content. If the reading is high or water is seeping through the walls it may be a landscaping issue outside.

If heavy rains cause pooling of water near your homes foundation, this should be a cause for concern. We have seen where heavy water has caused a basement wall to collapse. Ensure that the grade of your landscaping draws water away from the home. If this is not possible then there are some tricks you can use, like rubber sheeting and French drains to help stave off storm water from causing damage to your home. 

We can’t guarantee that you won’t ever have a water damage but if you do, we will make it “Like it never even happened.” It’s best to call us directly 336-946-1131

Fire place safety tips

11/25/2019 (Permalink)

A warm cozy fire keeps you warm and is beautiful to look at. But are you using your fireplace correctly? There are some things you can do to ensure the safety and comfort of your family, while using a fireplace.  Here are some things to ensure you are using your fireplace safely.

Christmas trees, or for that matter any evergreen tree is not a good idea to burn in a fireplace. This is due to the high sap content that tends to burn very hot and create a lot of creosote, making a chimney fire more likely. The idea of a Yule Log from a Christmas tree sounds like a good tradition but in actuality the Christmas tree was not used as all.  Even when the tradition of the Yule log was started it was known to use a hard wood.  

Speaking of creosote keep your wood dry, which is easier to light is a best practice. Wet wood produces a lot more smoke and thus creosote is carried up the chimney.  Not all of it clears the chimney as it accumulates and sticks to the side of the flue liner. If you use your fireplace quite a lot then several inches of creosote can accumulate over the course of the season. That is why it is important to have your chimney serviced by a professional chimney sweep annually.

Never start your fire with lighter fluid or gasoline. These products have specific uses and conditions that they are supposed to be used in. Gas is used in a closed system with an exhaust outdoors. The chemicals in these products are not meant to be inhaled or used indoors. They can also make the fire burn hotter than what the flue liner may be rated for. This can cause damage to the flue liner. It could also be the accelerant to starting that creosote fire.

Reducing your recycle bin by burning magazines or trash might seem like a good idea on the surface. But in reality, your subjecting your family to some toxins that could be dangerous to inhale. Paper plates and even cardboard are often usually coated with a plastic compound. Magazines have chemicals that are used in the inks to print on the paper.  The best thing to use to start a fire is to take and ax and splinter off small kindling of wood. The smaller pieces will light easily and when combined with other shavings of wood will light your fire just fine.

You can not avoid creosote completely and that is why is important to service the fireplace and chimney each year. If you do have a fire in your home, you can count on the services of SERVPRO of West Forsyth County. It’s best to call us directly 336-946-1131

Do's and Don'ts of Storm Flood Damage

11/19/2019 (Permalink)

Do you remember the first week of October 2019 there were 4 out of 7 days that week in 90’s. The first week of November has not been over 67, and Halloween was all but canceled due to the storms and wet weather. Were you prepared for it? We have already had a couple of freeze warnings for low lying areas and sensitive plants.

The Farmer’s Almanac predicts a colder than normal November but above average in precipitation and temperature December and January.  Wild temperature swings can bring on storms like the ominous clouds we saw and heavy down pours on Halloween.

Here are a few tips If your home or business is flooded. Remember flood water is considered contaminated water. Because it has flowed over the ground, there is no way to determine the contaminants in that water. All soft goods that have been exposed are also considered contaminated.

  • Avoid all contact with sewage / flood water and items contaminated by storm water
  • Wash your hands thoroughly after contact with contaminated items
  • Don’t walk through wet damaged areas unnecessarily this could also spread contaminated water
  • Shut off the HVAC as this may spread contaminated droplets of air further contaminating the home or business.
  • Do not use house hold fans to dry as this will also spread contaminants
  • Do not use personal hygiene products that have been submerged or exposed to contaminated areas
  • More information concerning our water damage restoration service can be found here

Call SERVPRO of West Forsyth County should your home or business be affected by storm. It is best to contact us directly at 336-946-1131

5 Tips for Fire Prevention Around the House

11/16/2019 (Permalink)

Are you paying attention to some early warning signs or recognizing the potential for fire hazards? We have heard of crime dogs but being a fire hound can make your life much safer.  Here are a 5 things to be on the lookout for around your home of office.

Overloaded plugs – with Christmas time coming and the extraordinary amount of electronics we have in our homes, it is easy to overload a two-plug circuit. Never daisy chain extension cords or multiplug surge protectors. Be sure to follow the guideline on the manufacturer’s instructions for Christmas lights and decorations. Bob Vila has a list of 10 things not to plug into a power strip, consider leaving some of these energy vampires unplugged when not in use.

Everybody has a junk drawer, right? Do you store batteries in that drawer? If you do, they could potentially be a fire hazard. According to Battery Products you should never store loose batteries. The reason is the same you should not just throw batteries in a trash can. Even low voltage has the potential to start a fire.   This video of a battery starting a fire was set intentionally, but think of all the metal and paper items in your junk drawer is it fire hazardous? Battery organizers help prevent batteries from being loose and the negative and positive ends from coming into contact.

What is that smell? Do you come into a room turn a light switch and it smells like plastic melting? It may smell like a drill or a mixer that has run to long. Now if an appliance is new that may be normal, for a bit. But if that smell is coming from a wall switch or outlet it’s time to turn it off and call and electrician to check it out.

Speaking of turning on light switches, do they flicker? If one light is flickering it may be a loose bulb but when multiple lights flicker that is not a good sign. Tighten or replace the bulb and if the flickering continues call an electrician.

Circuit breakers keep tripping. If your circuit breakers keep needing to be reset see tip number 1. But if overloaded plugs are not the case then you may need to replace the breaker. Usually these don’t need a lot of maintenance but age and use can eventually wear one out. Never attempt to do this with the main power on to the home.  If you are even a little unsure of how to do this call a professional and I don’t mean YouTube.

We hope that you never experience a fire in your home or office but if you do you can count on the expertise of SERVPRO of West Forsyth County to help you. It’s best to call us directly at 336-946-1131

We hire Veterans

11/11/2019 (Permalink)

On this Veterans day we are pleased to announce that SERVPRO of West Forsyth County is the recipient of the Gold Hire Vets Medallion Award. Our efforts to recruit, employ, and retain our nation’s veterans have been recognized by the US Department of Labor.

By meeting the criteria required for a Gold Medallion Award, SERVPRO of West Forsyth County recognizes the value veterans bring to the workplace. The commitment and pride in their duty Veterans learned in the military, is the same as they bring to the workplace.  

As the only veteran hiring award at the federal level, the Honoring Investments in Recruiting and Employing American Military Veterans (HIRE Vets) Medallion Program is a way for us to show that we appreciate the sacrifice Veterans have made for this country.

If you know of a Veteran in need of a job, have them send their resume to Office@SpWFC.com They may also contact our office directly at 336-946-1131

Your house is talking are you listening?

11/4/2019 (Permalink)

If you are of a certain age you remember a commercial that said, “When EF Hutton speaks people listen”. Well when your house is talking to you, then you should listen.  Is your house letting you know there is trouble before there is trouble? There are some noises that simply should not be ignored.

Some things to listen to when your house is talking to you are. 

  • Your water heater sits in a closet or in the garage and is silently heating the water. When it is silent no news is good news. But if it starts to bubble or sounds like crackling that may be sediment rumbling around in the bottom of the tank. It may be a sign that it is getting ready to fail. One way to prevent this is to flush it out every few months. It will prolong the life of your water heater.
  • You flush the toilet, wash your hands and hear the modern-day convenience of running water. Well what if no one is using water and you hear it running or dripping? Well then you might have a leak. Weather it is a freshwater supply or a drain you will need to call a plumber.
  • Ever been laying in bed and suddenly hear scratching or scurrying in the wall or attic? Well this is not to be ignored either as mice, squirrels, or other critters can chew holes in walls or worse wiring that could lead to a potential call to SERVPRO of West Forsyth County.
  • “Clang clang clang goes the trolley”, well this is not how your furnace should react when you turn it on. Normal clicking or ticks is ok for baseboard or hot water systems. But the pump and system itself should be relatively quiet.
  • Cat call whistling is not socially acceptable anywhere, but especially with your furnace. When was the last time you changed the filter? You should use a high-quality filter and do so quarterly or monthly if you have pets.
  • Boo hiss is usually a sound made at a ball game, but if your home has gas and it is hissing at you then you may be getting ready to lose the game. If you smell gas or hear it near the meter or at the home’s outdoor gas post, then get out and call the gas company immediately.
  • If you have worked in electronics you know that sound a relay makes when it is energized, it clicks. It sounds like two decent sized magnets coming together. Well water users have a pump in the house or the yard that pulls water into a holding tank and stored for use. If you hear that click each time you turn on the water, that could indicate you have a leak. If it turns on so frequently that could wear out the pump prematurely.
  • Things that make you go hummmmm. Appliances that have working perfectly normal and suddenly develop a hum should be considered for repair. Clothes dryers hum but if they start squeaking or making new noises time call the repairman.
  • Birds chirping in the morning is ok but chirping from a smoke detector is never a good thing. This usually happens at my home around 2:30 AM but not having it ready could be a an even worse day.

Any of these could lead to a reason to need SERVPRO of West Forsyth County. If you need to call us we are available 24/7 it’s best to call us directly 336-946-1131