Recent Posts

Preparing your Charlottesville Basement for Storms and Floods

3/18/2020 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Charlottesville team member, wearing rubber boots, standing in above ankle-deep water in flooded basement. Storm flooding and power outage could lead to sump pump failure and a flooded basement.

Even though last week was Virginia Flood Awareness Week (March 8-14), the spring season is just starting. That means spring storms in our Albemarle County area with massive rain amounts and the “F”-word…We’re talking about “Flooding” here. Flooding in Central Virginia can happen swiftly, so it is best to be prepared. Unfortunately, flooding manifests itself in lower regions first, such as our basements.

Basement Preparation tips:

  • Maintain and clean sump pump on a regular basis
  • Check for a battery backup; Sump pumps can fail when there is a power loss
  • Consider a generator for additional backup power.
  • Elevate furniture, electrical components, valuables, and contents off floor to higher surfaces
  • Use plastic storage containers instead of cardboard boxes to store items in basement
  • Pay Attention to Flood Alerts
  • ERP Emergency Ready Profile

For more information on flood preparedness, click here

For flood and water damage tips, click here.

SERVPRO of Charlottesville is an IICRC Certified Firm with the training, expertise, equipment, and national resources for large storm and flooding events. This is why “We are Faster to any size disaster.”

Have Storm or Flood Damage? Call Us Today 434-977-5850

We are Cleaning Experts

3/17/2020 (Permalink)

Microscopic view of the Coronavirus with the SERVPRO logo, and “Here to Help” transposed over photo. We follow all CDC guidelines cleaning with our hospital-grade disinfectant.

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.

Specialized Training

We are prepared to clean and disinfect your commercial property, 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 business needs deep cleaning services, call the experts TodaySERVPRO of Charlottesville at 434-977-5850

Charlottesville Hoarding Cleanup Services

3/11/2020 (Permalink)

Miscellaneous contents, ready to be sorted by our SERVPRO of Charlottesville professionals. Need help with hoarding cleanup? We are "Here to Help"!

Do you know anyone you would consider a ‘Collector’, ‘Pack-Rat’, or…a ‘Hoarder’?

Without going into the psychology of Hoarding Disorder, or HD, a hoarding situation can escalate from

  • a clutter issue
  • to a health and sanitation issue
  • to a safety issue
  • In an emergency situation, such as fire, blocked pathways could be disastrous.

Our IICRC certified team at SERVPRO of Charlottesville have the training, experience, and equipment to handle hoarding cleanup. In addition, our crews are professional, polite and tactful. For more information on our Advanced Technology & Techniques, click here.

How we can help:

  • Assess the situation
  • Dispose of Debris
  • Can do an Inventory of items
  • Floor to ceiling Cleaning, Disinfecting and Deodorizing
  • Demolition, if necessary, such as remove affected carpeting, flooring, and drywall
  • We can rent dumpsters and storage containers to have on-site
  • Our Crews wear Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) while at these job sites, to avoid infection

Our focus is on indoor cleanup; not outdoor spaces such as yards and fields.

For more information on Hoarding Disorder, click here.

For information on how to help a loved one with HD, click here.

Need help with Hoarding Cleanup?

Call SERVPRO of Charlottesville today at 434-977-5850

We are “Here to Help”

Charlottesville Dryer Vent Fire Safety

3/6/2020 (Permalink)

Dryer lint cascading out of a vent onto the floor. Dryer vent fire? We are “Here to Help” with your fire damage.

When was the last time you cleaned your dryer vent? Many of us dismiss this task because of our busy lives, or maybe we just don’t want to bother with it; too many other pressing matters at hand, right?

Why is this important?

Lint can accumulate in and clog the vents, causing them to overheat and ignite. These types of fires can be prevented with regular dryer vent cleaning.

A clogged dryer vent recently caused a local house fire in Charlottesville. Luckily, the owners were home and took action promptly. The firefighters contained it quickly, but it still caused quite a bit of damage to the home. For more about this local news story, click here.

According to the U.S. Fire Administration, “2,900 home clothes dryer fires are reported each year and cause an estimated 5 deaths, 100 injuries, and $35 million in property loss. Failure to clean the dryer (34 percent) is the leading cause of home clothes dryer fires.”

The Basics in What to Do:

  • Dryerexhaust vents should be inspected and cleaned at least once a year
  • Lint trap should be cleaned before and after every dryer load

SERVPRO of Charlottesville is “here to help” with your fire damage restoration.

For information about our Fire Damage Restoration Process click here.

For Fire Damage Emergency Tips click here.

For Questions about Fire Damage Repair and Restoration

Call 434-977-5850. We are “Here to Help” for 24-Hour Emergency Service

Selling Your House with Mold Issues? SERVPRO of Charlottesville is “Here to Help!”

3/3/2020 (Permalink)

A "For Sale" sign in front of a blurred house in the background. Mold doesn’t have to be a house contract deal-breaker; we can help!

So, you are selling your Charlottesville home this Spring, but you discovered…(gasp!) Mold?!  For most home buyers, discovering mold is a deal-breaker. It doesn’t have to be.

Mold is everywhere:

  • It takes roughly 24 to 48 hours to start growing after a water damage
  • Mold needs a moisture source to grow
  • Mold feeds on any organic material such as wood, paper, drywall, carpet, clothes, …most things in your house…

Step 1: Fix the Leak/Source of moisture

Step 2: If anyone in the house is experiencing health issues, we refer the customer to an Industrial Hygienist, who can:

  • Do a full site visual inspection
  • Collect and test cultured air and surface samples
  • Measure the home moisture levels
  • Include their findings and recommendations in a report called a protocol, which is given to the customer
  • Customer sends the protocol to SERVPRO of Charlottesville

Step 3: Once the source of moisture has been fixed, SERVPRO of Charlottesville

  • can do an assessment
  • give a price range and scope of work (there may be unknowns)
  • start the mold remediation process

We get a lot of calls in the springtime about mold, especially from home sellers. Don’t panic. We’re “Here to Help”!

For more information about our Mold Remediation Process, click here.

For more information about Industrial Hygienist, click here.

For a really cool EPA Interactive “Mold House Tour” click here.

For Charlottesville Area Association of Realtors (CAAR), click here.

Have water damage and mold? Call SERVPRO of Charlottesville at 434-977-5850.

We’re “Here to Help” with our 24/7 Emergency Service.

Why Choose SERVPRO of Charlottesville for Fire Damage Restoration? We’ve Been in Your Shoes (Part Two)

2/17/2020 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Charlottesville technicians wearing protective gear, cleaning fire damage in our warehouse. We've been in your shoes, and know the trauma of coping with fire and soot damage.

As mentioned in a previous post, SERVPRO of Charlottesville suffered a water damage loss in March 2016. At the end of April 2016, we experienced a warehouse fire. Again, Amy Yates, our wonderful Accounting and HR savant lived through the whole ordeal.

She recounts, “The culprit was some faulty electrical wiring at the outlet between the bay doors. Our next-door neighbor at True Green (lawn fertilizer company) happened to get to work a half an hour earlier than usual, at 6:00 am. He saw smoke coming out of the bay door and called the Fire Department. The Fire Department called SERVPRO of Charlottesville and got me since I was on call. ‘Your building is on fire!’ are hardly the words you want to hear upon awakening. It didn’t take the firefighters long to put out the fire; about 15 to 30 minutes. But it caused so much damage! And soot was everywhere! You don’t realize how fast soot permeates into everything. I still have old files that smell sooty.”

It was ‘all-hands-on-deck’ to:

  • inventory everything
  • throw out what couldn’t be salvaged
  • clean up all affected areas
  • and keep the business open for the customers we were “here to help”

Amy continues her narrative, “The phones were down because the heat affected the wiring. Soot ruins electronic equipment. SERVPRO of Lynchburg lent us equipment since much of ours was ruined in the fire. In retrospect, the fire could have been much worse. The smoke was detected early, and that made all the difference.”

Lessons Learned:

  • We have greater Empathy for customers going through the same kind of trauma
  • We know that the panic is real
  • We know that it WILL get better

So, we know what we are talking about when we say ‘We’ve been in your shoes’.

For information on our Fire Damage Restoration Process, click here.

For information on the training involved for our Restoration Specialists, click here.

For information on IICRC standards and why hiring a Certified IICRC Firm is important, click here.

Before and After photos on our warehouse fire, click here.

Have Questions About Fire, Smoke, and Soot Damage?

Call SERVPRO of Charlottesville for 24 Hour Emergency service at 434-977-5850  

Viruses Spreading Like Wildfire? SERVPRO of Charlottesville Can Help

2/12/2020 (Permalink)

Written Information about ServprOXIDE Worried about Viruses? SERVPRO of Charlottesville offers Cleaning & Disinfecting Services 434-977-5850

Did you know that SERVPRO offers detailed cleaning and disinfecting services?  And that our corporate office has an in-house chemist that works hard to create products for these specialized services? 

Take SERVPROXIDE for example.  SERVPROXIDE was created by SERVPRO and is designed to kill harmful bacteria, viruses and mold on hard surfaces.  Plus, it is an effective sanitizer for soft surfaces.  Below is a list of Bacteria, Viruses, and Fungi that SERVPROXIDE is used for:

BACTERIA

  • Enterobacter aerogenes
  • Escherichia Coli (E-Coli) 
  • Klebsiella pneumoniae 
  • Legionella pneumophila 
  • Listeria monocytogenes
  • MRSA (Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus) 
  • Mycobacterium bovis- BCG (surrogate for tuberculosis) 
  • Pseudomonas aeruginosa 
  • Salmonella enterica 
  • Staphylococcus aureus 


VIRUSES

  • Acinetobacter baumannii 
  • Adenovirus 1 
  • Hepatitis A, Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C 
  • Human Immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) 
  • Influenza A (H1N1) (Swine Flu) 
  • Influenza B Virus 
  • Norovirus (Feline Calicivirus as surrogate) 
  • Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV) 
  • Rotavirus 


VIRUSES - ANIMAL

  • Bordetella bronchiseptica 
  • Canine Distemper Virus 
  • Canine Parvovirus (PARVO) 
  • Feline Calicivirus 
  • Hantavirus (Prospect Hill Virus)


FUNGI

  • Aspergillus niger 
  • Trichophyton mentagrophytes
  • Trichophyton rubrum 

SERVPROXIDE is…

  • an EPA Hospital Grade disinfectant and sanitizer
  • Carries the EPA’s lowest toxicity rating
  • Requires no PPE
  • Safe for everyday use/ general purpose cleaning

Common areas of use:

  • Federally Inspected Meat and Poultry Processing Plants
  • Gyms, Locker Rooms, Sports Gear
  • Homes, Daycares, Schools, Laboratories
  • Hospitals, Nursing Homes
  • HVAC - Internal and External
  • Poultry Houses, Egg Processing Premises, Hatcheries
  • Restaurants, Refrigerated Storage Units
  • Swine Sanitation Premises
  • Vehicles, Ambulances, Buses, Airplanes, Trains, Boats, Cruise Ships
  • Veterinary Clinics, Animal Pens, Farms

While it is not possible to completely prevent the spread of viruses and germs, there are ways to keep them at bay and we are Here to Help!  Call us today at 434-977-5850

Water Loss in Your Charlottesville Business? We’ve been in Your Shoes

2/12/2020 (Permalink)

Water damaged office baseboards pulled up while office worker in next room. Water damage remediation in progress simultaneously with remaining open to help our customers.

There’s a saying that goes, “You can’t understand someone until you’ve walked a mile in their shoes.” And we have been in your shoes when it comes to dealing with a water loss to our business.

In March 2016 we had a water loss at our current location on Quail Run. A faulty pipe valve, in the ceiling of the men’s bathroom, was the culprit.  Amy, our Accounting and HR savant, was here that morning. She recounts, “I entered the building around 7:30 am and immediately heard the rushing sound of water pouring out onto the carpet, pooling, and spreading quickly down the hall. The initial feeling was to panic, followed by taking action.” Our SERVPRO warehouse manager found the source of loss and worked to stop it, while Amy moved vital office equipment off the floor and out of the way of the encroaching flood. Then she called our franchise owner, Earl, and office manager, Krystina.

Another call was put out to the property manager of our office/warehouse, to inform them of the situation and to go through the proper channels to sign the necessary paperwork and forms to authorize us to do the cleanup. Yes! Even we at SERVPRO needed to make sure all the paperwork was done before getting a ‘green light’ to work!

Our crew members got to work identifying and sketching the affected areas, doing ‘Before’ photos, extracting water, and setting up drying equipment.  

Did it cost us in terms of lost business? No. Our highly trained crew members are professionals who know just what to do. We all took care of the office, in addition to helping our customers.

Lessons learned:

  • Empathy for our customers
  • We know that the panic is real
  • We know that it will get better

To learn about our highly trained crew members, click here.

To learn about the importance of being an IICRC Firm, click here.

Stay tuned to find out how we handled a fire in our warehouse!

Call SERVPRO of Charlottesville at 434-977-5850 for Emergency 24-Hour Service

We’re “Here to Help” 24/7/365

Cooking and Fire Safety Tips for Charlottesville Homes

2/4/2020 (Permalink)

Fire-engulfed frying pan on an electric stove. If this happens to your Charlottesville kitchen, we have highly trained Fire Restoration Technicians "Here to Help."

I grew up cooking on a gas burning stove. We had to strike a match to light the stove and did not think about the fire danger involved. Our wooden home was in an older neighborhood built around 1910. No fire extinguisher. No smoke alarms.

It’s what you are accustomed to, right?

Luckily, we were very careful and sensible in the kitchen. Yet, cooking is a major cause of home fires.

Here are some safety tips that apply to everyone, including seniors:

  • Never leave your stove unattended while cooking. Period.
  • Keep the area around the stove clutter-free. Even a pot-holder can catch fire instantly from an electric stove. 
  • Never put Anything on the stovetop, such as grocery bags or cardboard boxes. It would be too easy to accidentally turn it on.
  • Do not store Anything in your oven.
  • Keep the stove surface clean, especially from grease. 
  • Pour hot grease into a coffee can or other heat-safe container. Then throw it away.
  • Roll up your sleeves
  • Keep a fire extinguisher easily accessible (and learn how to use it).

Hopefully, a fire disaster may be avoided. However, if you need us for your fire restoration, we are “Here to Help”.

For information about our Fire Damage Restoration Process click here.

For Fire Damage Emergency Tips click here.

For Questions about Fire Damage Repair and Restoration

Call 434-977-5850. We are “Here to Help” for 24-Hour Emergency Service

Equipment Spotlight: We Can Remediate Storm Damage If There Is No Power, Using Our Generator Trailer

1/24/2020 (Permalink)

Our generator trailer being used on a Charlottesville area job site. Auxiliary power for large jobs is one of the many uses for our generator trailer.

Having a powerful generator in the Cleaning and Restoration Industry is a must. When a storm sweeps through the Charlottesville area and causes wind and flood damage to your home or business, you could end up with substantial water damage.

In some cases, it would be dangerous to use electricity.

In other cases, there could be a power outage.

Water damage needs to be remediated immediately; It can ruin everything, especially wood. Mold can quickly become an issue within 24-48 hours. So, how to extract all that water from your structure when time is of the essence?

SERVPRO of Charlottesville has a generator trailer at-the-ready, to power all of our equipment to remediate your storm loss.     

If the power is out because of a storm, SERVPRO of Charlottesville can still be “Here to help.” Call us at 434-977-5850 for 24/7 Emergency Services.