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Fire Safety: Understanding the Main Types of Smoke Detectors

10/23/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Fire Safety: Understanding the Main Types of Smoke Detectors Purchase your smoke detector at Smithville,TN

A smoke alarm sounds like a simple enough purchase, but when you get to the store, you are confronted with several models and terms like photoelectric, ionization and dual sensor. What does any of that mean? Well, keep reading to find out.

1. Photoelectric Alarms

A photoelectric smoke detector may be best known for its accuracy and durability. These alarms utilize a small strobe light within the housing, and when smoke enters the covering, the light is reflected toward an internal sensor that triggers the alarm. These detectors have less false alarms than ionization models because the deflection requires larger smoke particles, like those created in electrical or other common house fires.

2. Ionization Alarms

An ionization smoke alarm works by electrifying the air that enters the chamber, and when smoke enters the housing, the current is interrupted causing the alarm to sound. Unfortunately, these alarms are triggered by smaller smoke particles, meaning that false alarms do occur, especially in areas like kitchens.

3. Dual-Sensor Alarms

A dual-sensor alarm is precisely as it sounds, it is a combination of both the photoelectric and ionization alarms, making it one of the best devices for smoke detection. Unfortunately, the increased performance also comes with an increased priced tag.

4. Beyond Alarms

Many consider fire safety a significant part of home and family safety, but it goes beyond the purchase of smoke detectors. A safety plan should include evacuation routes and regular family safety meetings. Additionally, it doesn’t hurt to hire a company in Smithville,TN, that specializes in emergency planning to help you prepare for a worst-case scenario.

While it seems like a simple tool, every smoke alarm has specifications that make it useful for only certain types of situations. A photoelectric alarm is best suited for dense, slow-burning fires while an ionization alarm is designed for quicker moving fires, like grease and paper. A dual-sensor alarm may be your best choice of alarm, but the price is more. No matter your decision, just know that preparation and detection can be critical to your safety.

How Smart Business Owners Prepare for Emergencies

10/17/2018 (Permalink)

Commercial How Smart Business Owners Prepare for Emergencies Evacuation procedure, including escape routes in Carthage,TN

If you are like most business owners in Carthage, TN, you want to do what you can to protect your business from catastrophe. Of course, safeguarding your building and other physical assets is only part of the equation. You also must take steps to ensure your employees and customers are safe during an emergency. By taking your routine fire drill to the next level, you increase your odds of avoiding disaster.

Develop an Emergency Action Plan

Business owners have a duty to protect their employees and customers from injury. Before planning your drill, you must draft an action plan. To comply with OSHA regulations, business action plans must include at least the following components:

  • A procedure for reporting emergencies
  • An evacuation procedure, including escape routes
  • A description for continuing essential operations
  • A method for accounting for employees during the situation
  • An assignment of rescue and medical duties for designated employees
  • A detailed list of contact personnel inside and outside the organization

Hold Periodic Drills
Your organization’s action plan is only good if your employees know how to implement it. The best way to train your employees is to hold a fire drill. During the drill, encourage employees to follow the action plan completely. You may also want to collaborate with emergency responders to make the drill as realistic as possible. Remember, planned drills are usually not as good as surprise one.

Evaluate the Success of Your Action Plan
After you complete a drill, you must have a method for evaluating its success. Ask each department to prepare a report card. Then, look for holes in your action plan. If the plan needs rewriting, do so before your organization’s next drill.


While you can probably use a restoration service to repair your business after a catastrophe, you can’t replace human life. With a complete action plan and a regular fire drill schedule, you can likely boost your odds of keeping everyone in your company safe during a disaster.

What to Do About Crawl Space Water

10/8/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage What to Do About Crawl Space Water Air mover on a water damage in a Cookeville,TN home

When you live in Cookeville, TN, finding a wet crawl space in your home may not be something you immediately think can cause problems in your home. However, if left unattended water in the crawl space can lead to foundation damage and eventual mold growth.

Reasons Crawl Spaces Get Water

While it seems like a small area to worry about, discovering water in the crawlspace is not uncommon. Finding flooding in your crawl space can happen for several reasons.

  • Broken water lines
  • Subterranean water
  • Heavy storm rains
  • Improper drainage from downspouts and gutters
  • Improper sloping of landscaping
  • Over watering of landscaping

The first two in this list are perhaps what most people think crawl space water is from. However improper drainage from spouts and landscaping, and over watering can be equally culpable, and more preventable.

How to Deal With Crawl Space Water

If you find you have a wet crawl space or potential flooding issue it’s best to contact a professional to deal with the problem. They can assess the area containing flood water, and do what's needed to take care of the problem, find the water’s source, repair any damages, and further protect your home.

Tips for Preventing Water in the Crawl Space

There are a few things you can do to help prevent flood damage in your crawl space on your own. You can grade your landscaping so it slopes away from your home, and include irrigation or base layers into your gardens or flower beds to help direct water away as well. Also ensure all hoses have been turned off after the watering is completed. Downspouts should include a back-splash and be angled away from the building, while regularly cleaning and maintaining gutters can help prevent water overflow that pools around the home’s foundation.

If you find you have a wet crawl space it’s best to quickly contact a professional to discover the root of the problem. Remember, there are thing you can do to protect your home as well.

Key Steps You Should Complete During Sprinkler System Maintenance

9/25/2018 (Permalink)

Commercial Key Steps You Should Complete During Sprinkler System Maintenance Commercial water loss in Smithville, TN

Depending on the nature of your Smithville, TN, business, your sprinkler system may be a vital component of your success. Because it’s idle during winter, it’s important to ensure that this system is functioning properly before you restart it at the beginning of the growing season. To accomplish this, you should complete routine irrigation maintenance.

Optimal Performance

An irrigation system evaluation enables you to identify any existing issues that may interfere with optimal performance, such as broken sprinkler heads, clogs and water leaks. It also ensures your system is ready to go when you need it to perform, helping to minimize potentially harmful irrigation delays.

Initial Steps

Before you turn your system’s water on, you may want to remove sprinkler heads. This may help clear debris near valves, reducing the risk of obstructions.

When you’re ready to initiate water flow, increase pressure slowly. If you immediately turn the water on full strength, the intense initial pressure may cause some components to crack or burst.

Maintenance Checklist

Once the water is turned on, you can evaluate how individual components are functioning. To complete an efficient irrigation maintenance review, you should take the following steps:

  • Ensure the system has adequate water pressure
  • Confirm that each valve has the proper orientation
  • Verify the rotation of heads and adjust as needed
  • Clean filters, if necessary
  • Inspect and clean sensors

It’s also important to check your system’s controller. You may need to reprogram this component to setup automatic watering. You may also need to replace backup batteries.

Avoid Sprinkler Flooding

Every business owner wants their sprinkler system to efficiently perform its duty. Completing annual irrigation maintenance can help minimize the risk of performance issues as well as potentially destructive sprinkler flooding. Flooding can be costly, especially if it flows into your building and necessitates the need for extensive cleanup efforts. In short, an annual irrigation system evaluation helps to ensure optimal performance as well as protect your property and financial interests.

After a Flood: What Not To Do

9/18/2018 (Permalink)

Storm Damage After a Flood: What Not To Do Equipment ready for any storm damage in Carthage, TN

If your home in Carthage, TN, is plagued by flood water, you will undoubtedly get a lot of advice about what to do to make the recovery process smoother. Avoiding unnecessary or harmful behavior, however, is just as important, if not more so, than taking positive steps. Here are five actions to avoid so that you don't make a situation that's potentially dangerous worse for you and your family.

1. Don't Stay.

Step one of dealing with a flooded home is getting out of it. Don't try to stay in your house, especially if you have significant damage or if evacuation is recommended or mandated. You could be putting your family's safety at risk.

2. Don't Wade.

A number of problems could arise from standing flood water. It could be charged with electricity, hiding sharp or dangerous items or filled with bacteria. At any rate, you don't want this water to touch your skin or be anywhere near you.

3. Don't Play.

If you are waiting to be rescued or waiting on an adjuster to arrive, you may feel bored. Fight the urge to play games on your phone or use it in any way that depletes the charge. You may need it for emergency reasons, and you may not have any place to recharge it.

4. Don't Buy.

Purchasing new furniture or replacing destroyed items is the very last item on the restoration to-do list. Buying these things before you have a clean, restored place to put them is inadvisable.

5. Don't Hesitate.

You may see widespread water damage all around you, but don't assume that your insurance company and flood restoration specialists won't have time to come and assess your property. Go ahead and give them a call to report the damage to your home. The sooner you call, the sooner they can help.

Flood water in your home is a situation that calls for smart action. Take the steps you need to take, and avoid the things that work against you.

What Is Mold? Your Guide To Understanding This Fungus Among Us

9/11/2018 (Permalink)

Mold Remediation What Is Mold? Your Guide To Understanding This Fungus Among Us Mold damage in Cookeville, TN

Mold is one of those dreaded problems that most homeowners are forced to deal with at least once or twice in their lifetimes. However, just because it is a common problem does not make it any easier to remediate—or understand. If you want to better understand black mold, its causes and how you can prevent it, contact your Cookeville, TN, mold remediation team to discuss your concerns and find answers to your most pressing questions.

What Are the Types?

If you want to know how to prevent mold and, when it's present, how to get rid of it, you need to first understand the different varieties and which may be present in your home. There are four main types:

  • Cladosporium
  • Penicillium
  • Alternaria
  • Aspergillus

Your mold cleanup team can help you identify the type present in your home and advise you on the best way to deal with it. If it is black mold, the team can act swiftly to prevent further contamination and prevent unwanted side effects.

Where Is It Found?

Mold can grow in just about any environment and all year round. However, its growth is typically encouraged by high humidity levels and warm conditions. Outdoors, you may be able to find it in moist, shady areas where leaves or other vegetation are decomposing. Indoors, you may be able to find it where humidity levels are high.

How Can You Prevent Exposure?

Preventing mold exposure does not have to be hard, and in fact, many proven prevention measures are things you likely do already. For instance, if you notice a moisture problem, you fix it. If your roof has a leak, you patch it. If the air in your home feels wet, you invest in a dehumidifier. In short, the key to preventing mold is moisture control.

It can be disheartening to find black mold or mold of any kind in one's home. If you discover the fungi in your home, reach out to Cookeville, TN , mold remediation experts to correct the issue and prevent further problems.

How To Protect Your Building After a Fire

8/28/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage How To Protect Your Building After a Fire Fire damage in a Woodbury, TN home

Even immediately after a building fire, you realize that the structure and content of your building may be damaged by fire, heat or smoke. Sometimes firefighters use a ventilation technique to help put out a fire. That sounds pretty harmless, but it really means they break through the roof, walls or windows of your building during the firefight. This necessary technique helps firefighters to:

  • Remove smoke
  • Release heat
  • Improve vision for firefighter safety
  • Increase the speed at which the fire can be put out

If your building in Woodbury, TN has fire damage to exterior walls or the roof, or if firefighters had to break through the exterior, you will need to cover these areas to protect your property from weather and exposure.

Protection From the Elements

It’s important that you hire the right remediation company to ensure the best recovery during fire cleanup. Proper recovery specialists will begin immediately by protecting your building and its contents from the elements. Here are some ways your building might need additional protection during mitigation:

  • Tarp Services. Tarps are usually placed on the building to protect from water damage until roof repair is complete.
  • Boarding Up. This method is used to close off the building walls and windows to keep people out for safety or to guard against theft.
  • Fencing. Effective to keep people at a safe distance from the building during cleanup and construction.

These barriers protect property for you and your clients for the duration of the recovery process. This ensures that the contents and structure will not be further damaged by rain, wind, or humans.

Recovery Assistance

The many steps involved in fire cleanup can be overwhelming, but it doesn’t have to be. A professional company is efficient in handling all the steps while guiding you through the process. They are experienced and knowledgeable about proper cleaning methods with a focus on recovering items that can be saved so you can get back to work as quickly as possible.

How To Train Employees on Evacuation Protocol

8/21/2018 (Permalink)

Storm Damage How To Train Employees on Evacuation Protocol Storm equipment in Smithville, TN

As a business owner in Smithville, TN, your goal is usually to keep your employees at work, not to teach them to get out. However, in the event of a real emergency, or planned fire drill, getting out is exactly what you need them to do. Review the tips below to put a preparedness plan into place to keep you and your staff safe in a disaster.

What To Do Before an Evacuation Drill

Prior to tripping the smoke alarm and expecting an efficient fire drill to occur, you must plan and train your staff accordingly.

  • Create an emergency action plan. Include primary and secondary escape routes and assign responsibilities, such as shutting down hazardous materials equipment or calling 911. Specific roles and responsibilities vary by the type of business and building.
  • Train staff on how to recognize the alarm, and ensure that it can be seen, heard and/or felt by all personnel. Plan for employees with disabilities.
  • Communicate both verbally and in writing a clear policy and procedure related to evacuation. Provide each person a copy or post throughout the building.

What To Do After a Drill

Your employees are out of the building safely. Now what?

  • Even in a drill, account for all employees. Set a specific meeting place for each employee and assign someone to check all names against a predetermined list. In an actual disaster, knowing if someone is still inside the building is critical.
  • Repeat the drill often so that your staff can easily perform the steps quickly under pressure. Practicing is especially important at onset, when new employees join and when changes are made to the business or the plan.
  • Evaluate the effectiveness of each drill, so continual improvements can be made.

Whether you are conducting a fire drill, or experiencing a real emergency at your business in Smithville, TN, the goal is to get your employees out safely. If a disaster should occur, once everyone is safe, conduct a visual damage check of your commercial property. If damage is present, contact a storm restoration specialist and your insurance agent as soon as possible.

Ways To Keep Water out of Your Crawl Space

8/14/2018 (Permalink)

Water Damage Ways To Keep Water out of Your Crawl Space Floor damaged caused by water loss in a Cookeville, TN home

When it comes to flooding at home, basements, cellars and crawl spaces are among the most common places to find water. While you may not worry too much about a little water in this tiny part of your home, if you neglect the problem, it could lead to more serious issues in your Cookeville, TN, home. Make sure you take the proper action to help ensure you don’t end up with a wet crawl space.

How it Happens

As a homeowner, you have a host of matters you must deal with to keep your home safe. A flood can frustrate you because of the cleanup and repair costs, not to mention to potential health and safety hazards. Here are some signs your crawl space may be at risk for water buildup:

  • Broken underground lines
  • Poorly graded property
  • Broken or incorrectly installed downspouts and rain gutters

Pay Attention to Landscaping

One of the biggest culprits for a wet crawl space is when your property doesn’t have the right slope. Your lawn and other landscaping should slope away from your home so when heavy rain comes, it won’t build up on your property and find its way into your basement. Make sure water is draining away from your house.

Don’t Water too Much

If you’ve got a garden or flower bed close to your home, be careful about how much you water it. Overwatering can easily cause water to leak into your crawl space and cause flooding.

Check Your Rain Gutters

If a storm hits, you count on rain gutters and downspouts to guide water away from your home toward the street. Check these on your house to ensure they are collecting water near your foundation or window wells.

If you’re worried about a wet crawl space, get in touch with a professional to inspect your property. These technicians can also help you clean up after a flood.

3 Steps for Preparing for Mold Remediation

7/25/2018 (Permalink)

Commercial 3 Steps for Preparing for Mold Remediation These steps can effectively address mold issues.

There are many misconceptions about mold, making it difficult for property owners to understand how long the process should take and how to budget for the work. For example, many people don't understand that mold exists everywhere. Spores get into buildings through open doors, ventilation systems, and on clothing. Consider the following facts about mold:

• Spores are microscopic and can't be completely removed from a building.
• Moist and mildly humid conditions promote mold growth.
Mold removal (or remediation) begins by identifying areas of moisture and correcting those issues.
Black mold, or stachybotrys chartarum, isn't always toxic. However, when you find any type of mold in your building, you should stay away from that area without disturbing the mold.

With these facts in mind, take the following steps when preparing for mold remediation. Many Cookeville, TN, businesses have built these steps into their maintenance protocols to avoid costly repairs in the future.

1. Learn how moisture gets into your buildings. Before you call a mold removal professional, you can begin resolving this problem by finding the source of moisture. This often requires visually inspecting your entire property. If mold has spread throughout your building, the source of the problem may be pretty far from the initial source of moisture. Professionals will also want to inspect the source of trouble to prevent future mold growth.

2. Make a record of the problem. Insurance companies in Cookeville, TN, often require proof of mold before agreeing to pay for remediation. Your written records and photos of the area could also be used by professionals when they plan their remediation efforts. Your records may also be used to determine the extent of the problem.

3. Plan for three to seven days of remediation work. The mold removal process typically includes the same steps:

• Resolving the water problem
• Isolating areas of mold contamination
• Misting contaminated areas to control dust
• Removing and disposing of damaged materials
• Thoroughly cleaning and drying infected areas
• Replacing removed materials

These steps can effectively address mold issues. After the area has been cleared by professionals, you can safely begin using that part of your property again. For more information, visit http://www.SERVPROcookevillecarthagesmithvillewoodbury.com/.