Recent Posts

Storm Warnings Versus Watches

3/26/2020 (Permalink)

When WXII’s Weather Meteorologist Lanie Pope says we are in a flash flood watch, do you know the difference between watch and warning?  Typically, if we can be warned of a situation the watch will come first. This means that conditions could turn favorable for the condition to occur. Warnings are when the condition has been reported or is imminent, it is happening or going to happen.

Do you know if your area is prone to flooding? How close is your home or business to a source that could flood your location? Luckily, we have a resource to see where those areas are. This link to the Flood Risk Information System will show you all of NC and allows you to zoom in to your home or business here in Forsyth County.  

Be safe, and always be aware. The National Weather Service issues alerts based on the information they have. But you should always be aware of your surroundings. Stay tuned to local TV and Radio when storms are around. If advised to take shelter or evacuate, do so IMMEDIATELY. Move to a safe area before access is cut off by flood water. Get to higher ground. Get out of areas subject to flooding. This includes dips, low spots, washes, etc.

This water is what we call in our industry Cat 3 water. This is the dirtiest, most contaminated water there is. Because it has ran over the ground and unknown contaminants bacteria and fungi could be present. Professionally drying a structure and its contents quickly will be key to preventing further damage and preventing mold from developing in a storm damaged home or business.

If your home or business suffers water damage from a flash flood call us directly 24/7 at 336-946-1131. SERVPRO® of West Forsyth County Professionals will work neatly and efficiently to help you regain control of your property when a damaging event has taken over. They will use state-of-the-art restoration techniques to ensure your property is taken care of right the first time.

We make it “Like it never even happened.” It’s best to call us directly at 336-946-1131

We are Cleaning Experts

3/18/2020 (Permalink)

SERVPRO is Here to Help during this time of need

During this unprecedented time caused by the global pandemic of coronavirus, this is a reminder to our customers that we are specialists in cleaning services, and we adhere to the highest cleaning and sanitation standards. If you are a Winston Salem business that is closed temporarily due to the NC Governor's order, it would be an ideal time take advantage of this service.

Specialized Training

We are prepared to clean and disinfect your home or business, according to protocols set forth by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. We have years of experience in dealing with biological contaminants, and we will go beyond the scope of work that regular janitorial staff perform on a daily basis.

The CDC encourages cleaning of high-touch surfaces such as counters, tabletops, doorknobs, light switches, bathroom fixtures, toilets, phones, keyboards, tablets and tables. Other spaces mentioned in the CDC’s guidance for commercial spaces include:

  • Kitchen/Food Areas
  • Bathrooms
  • Schools/Classrooms
  • Offices
  • Retail Spaces
  • Water Fountains
  • Shelving/Racks
  • Sales Counters
  • Carpets and Rugs
  • Stair Handrails
  • Elevator Cars
  • Playground Equipment
  • Fitness Equipment

Specialized Products

The CDC recommends usage of a labeled hospital-grade disinfectant with claims against similar pathogens to the coronavirus. Multiple products in the SERVPRO product line carry the EPA-approved emerging pathogens claims. While there is currently no product tested against this particular strain of the coronavirus, we are following all guidelines as provided by the CDC and local authorities.

Call Today for a Proactive Cleaning

If your home or business needs deep cleaning services, call the experts today – SERVPRO of West Forsyth County, 336-946-1131

Sources:

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/hcp/guidance-prevent-spread.html?CDC_AA_refVal=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.cdc.gov%2Fcoronavirus%2F2019-ncov%2Fguidance-prevent-spread.html

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/specific-groups/guidance-business-response.html

Cleaning for germs

3/13/2020 (Permalink)

How does one get a germ? According to the Minnesota department of health there are 5 common ways of spreading germs.

  • Nose, mouth, or eyes to hands to others
  • Hands to food
  • Food to hands to food
  • Infected child to hands to other children
  • Animals to people (petting)

So, what do these all have in common? They involve your hands. The number one thing you can do is wash your hands frequently.  Around the office what are the items that your employees touch the most? These items are the most used by your employees and therefore need to be cleaned more often and thoroughly.

  • Door Handles
  • Desktop / computer / telephone
  • Elevator buttons
  • The copier or other office equipment
  • Water fountain / cooler
  • Public coffee pot /maker / mugs
  • Sink / cleaning supplies i.e. sponge
  • Break room appliances
  • Vending machines
  • Restrooms

SERVPRO of West Forsyth County can perform a proactive cleanup that involves cleaning and disinfecting these areas and more for your office. The CDC encourages cleaning of high-touch surfaces such as counters, tabletops, doorknobs, light switches, bathroom fixtures, toilets, phones, keyboards, tablets, and tables at a minimum. These same surfaces are mentioned in the CDC’s guidance for commercial spaces as well, including:

  • Kitchen/Food Areas
  • Bathrooms
  • Schools/Classrooms
  • Offices
  • Retail Spaces
  • Water Fountains
  • Shelving and Racks
  • Sales Counters
  • Carpets and rugs
  • Stair Handrails
  • Elevator Cars
  • Playground Equipment
  • Fitness Equipment

For your office cleaning needs call SERVPRO of West Forsyth County directly at 336-946-1131

Spring storms can potentially lead to water damage.

3/9/2020 (Permalink)

Spring time in Winston Salem can bring storms that can cause flash flooding. When water stands it can cause additional damage.  This secondary damage can cost you even more money. So, the old adage is never truer than when dealing with a water-damaged home or business. Every minute matters, because every minute the property is wet could turn primary damage into secondary- or even permanent damage.  That's why emergency response, and time matter.  

Secondary water damage occurs when the moisture from the primary event (flood, leak, etc.) begins to evaporate on its own into the air.  Over time the air will no longer be able to hold the moisture from the evaporation.  The moisture will have to go somewhere and a very basic principle behind psychometrics is that wet goes to dry.  The moisture may go into your drywall, cabinetry, sheet rock, hardwood floors, vinyl floors, etc.  Once the moisture is allowed to sit, mold can begin to grow in as little as 48-72 hours.  This is why emergency action is so incredibly important.

Storms, floods, burst pipes, and leaks simply don't abide by the 9-to-5 workday.  So why should your restoration provider?  SERVPRO of West Forsyth County Professionals are on-call 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, with the state-of-the-art equipment and proven methods and training to get the job done right as quickly as possible. This includes every holiday, even Easter Sunday. You can call us and we will be there.

If the unthinkable happens, call your local SERVPRO of West Forsyth County Professionals at (336) 946-1131 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."

Experience and brand make a difference

3/2/2020 (Permalink)

So why would I use SERVPRO over a guy in a truck? Well do you trust the guy in a truck? What experience in water damage restoration does he have? How long has that brand been around?  I don’t know how long guy in a truck has been around but, SERVPRO started back in 1967. Starting in Sacramento on the west coast, SERVPRO started as a painting company that had a background in restoration. Selling its first franchise in 1969, and growing to 647 franchises by 1988 when it relocated the headquarters to Gallatin, TN. Today SERVPRO has more than 1700 franchises across the US and Canada.

SERVPRO has led the way in using science and technology to develop the techniques we use to restore your home or business. State of the art equipment and training from experienced instructors give us the knowledge and ability to repair your home or business after a disaster. Even though each individual franchise is independently owned and operated, we have the organizational structure / capacity to respond to major events, as we were called to do in 2005 for Katrina, 2008 Hurricane Ike, and 2012 Superstorm Sandy.

With the experience of a long history and training you can trust SERVPRO of West Forsyth County to competently restore your home or business to a preloss condition or “Like it never even happened.”

For questions about our service please call us directly 336-946-1131

Providing a disaster plan solution to business

2/24/2020 (Permalink)

How are those resolutions going? Did you say to yourself I’m going to lose weight or I’m going to exercise more? You’re not alone but these things take preparation and determination. They also take practice for to get into a habit. On average it takes 2 months to get into a habit and could vary even more depending on the behavior of the person. 

SERVPRO has an easy and free plan for your business to get into the habit of preparing for a business disruption.  Because, when a business disruption happens to you, the last thing you want to be doing is asking “well, what do I do now?” With the SERVPRO Ready App you will have all of the answers and team in place to get back into business quickly.

This handy mobile application can be managed by your maintenance team and will have the resources at your fingertips to handle any situation that business or life throws at you. Access the link above or call Ed Dean with SERVPRO of West Forsyth County for a free consultation on getting started with your disaster plan.

It’s best to contact us directly at 336-946-131

The 8 Most likely sources of water damage

2/10/2020 (Permalink)

We all have running water in our homes; it courses through the house like veins with life giving properties. Controlling how it flows is so very critical to having a dry safe place to live. What are the vulnerable places in your home or business that are susceptible to water intrusion? Have you checked them lately?  

We are going to tell you the 8 most common places that water damage can occur and what you can do about it to detect it early.

  • Dish washer – how many times have you loaded the dish washer and left the house or gone to bed. Recently the water from a leaky dishwasher was saturated the kitchen floor of an elderly woman’s condo while her and her grandson watched a couple of movies. It was too late water had penetrated the laminate flooring and it had begun to cup.
  • Ice maker – Supply lines in general are a consistent threat to have water damage. They are under pressure and will break down over time. You may not even know you have a problem till water is coming from under the refrigerator.
  • Washing Machine Connection hoses – Again these are supply lines under pressure and may be bending in a way that may eventually cause a pin hole rupture. SERVPRO recommends that you have steel braided hoses connected to your Washer and Toilet supply lines.
  • Toilet connection hoses – Again the supply line under pressure. Check to ensure the seal to the tank is not leaking. That you have a steel braided hose.
  • Hot Water Heater – Here we also have supply lines and an additional pressure release valve. Sediment can build up and shorten the life span of your water heater. If rust builds on it, then that could cause a leak. When is the last time you looked in on your water heater? Chances are it is just quietly doing its job. But you should have it serviced once a year.
  • Plumbing P-Traps – the more connections you have in your plumbing the greater the chance is for a leak to develop. Take a peek at your P-Traps through out the home and ensure a potential mold source is not developing.
  • Bath / Shower doors and curtains - we want to ensure here that we are closing them all the way. We don’t want the water that should be going down the drain splashing out of the ends of the shower. Splash guards can help as well as magnetic shower curtains.
  • HVAC – Your air conditioner and or heat pump has a condensate drain line that allows water to flow out of the house. Normally the one at or near the outside unit is running but there is a secondary flow that will be near the soffit of your home. In mine it is over a window so that if I see it dripping, I know I have an issue. But there is another thing you can do.

For all of these you can buy water detectors that can detect as little as a 16th of an inch of water. They will sound an alarm when water is detected so that you can shut it off quickly which is important to preventing further damage. When you leave for vacation be sure to shut the water off if you are going to be away from your home for more than a day or two. It is also important that after a storm event you check those areas of your home that you don’t often visit for signs of water intrusion.

If you have water damage to your home or business call us 336-946-1131 It’s best to contact us directly.

Winter Storm preparedness

1/27/2020 (Permalink)

Wow what a start to the new year of 2020 do you remember what the temperature was on December 30th 2019? 68 degrees, we want to “snow” where winter is? Well if winter does arrive are you prepared for any of Old Man Winter storms? Here are some tips that you should think about for prepping your home.

  • Insulation – heat rises and if your attic is poorly insulated then you may be throwing money right out the window. Here in Winston Salem we are actually in Zone 4 which means the R value of insulation should be R49. Most homes are R38 when built.
  • Maintenance – Everything needs maintenance when you are a home owner. Your HVAC is no exception. Filters need changing regularly. When is the last time you had the furnace cleaned or duct system? We get called on 3-5 furnace puff backs a year. Are these preventable? No but they are less severe and sometimes they are preventable when a trained technician sees and or corrects a problem that could cause an issue.
  • Weather stripping around doors and windows. Caulk cracks around windows using water resistant caulk on the outside of the building. Be sure to replace frayed and worn sweeper strips on the bottom of doors.
  • Service your chimney, wood burning stove and fire place. Have a professional chimney sweep clean and inspect the cap annually. Never burn evergreen wood or wet wood as they create a lot of smoke and cause creosote buildup. You may have to rely on this as a source of heat if the power goes out in a winter storm.
  • Guest rooms and other regularly unoccupied rooms should be closed off when not in use. This too will conserve heat.

We hope that you and your family stay safe and warm this winter. If you ever need us, we are available 24/7 at 336-946-1131

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