Recent Posts

4 Types of Storms We Have in Catawba County

1/18/2022 (Permalink)

Multiple lightning strikes in a dark, stormy area Storms affect hundreds of local homes each year, so prepare now!

Each year, bad weather damages hundreds of homes and businesses in the Hickory, NC area. These incidents can cause broken windows, damaged roofs, water damage, and more, which is why our team is often called to clean up the mess. At SERVPRO of Alexander, Caldwell, Burke and Catawba Counties, we’ve seen first-hand how destructive the weather can be, so if you’re trying to prepare your property for potential storm damage, here are some storms you should be ready for.

Common Types of Storms in Our Area

1. Thunderstorms. Typically a summertime phenomenon, thunderstorms—while usually mild—can cause a lot of damage, such as downed trees, heavy rains, and even start fires.

2. Hurricanes. Hurricanes generally occur in the second half of the year, and they can be quite destructive, such as Hurricane Florence. We don’t usually sustain as much damage as the coastal region, but we still often feel the effects in the form of rain and wind.

3. Tornadoes. Tornadoes aren’t a frequent occurrence in the region, but they aren’t uncommon, either. Unfortunately, they are highly destructive and can cause tree damage and expose homes to the elements.

4. Winter Storms. Each year, we typically get one or two winter storms, such as snow, sleet, or some type of wintery mix. They might be pretty, but they can create problems such as collapsed roofs and burst pipes.

Cleaning Up Storm Damages

Storms can cause a significant amount of damage, but if you’re aware of the potential dangers, you can take preventative steps. If you’re not sure where to start, Ready.gov has a dedicated page for each of these phenomena. But if you do suffer from storm damage, you can call us at (828) 396-1070 to make it “Like it never even happened.”

Why Our Customers Choose SERVPRO

1/4/2022 (Permalink)

Open cards on a brown desk Our customers sometimes send us cards or online reviews to thank us for the work that we do!

For over a decade, SERVPRO of Alexander, Caldwell, Burke and Catawba Counties has helped Hickory, Morganton, and Lenoir residents recover from fire damages, flooding, mold, and more. We’ve invested a lot into this community, and we are always honored to serve those in their time of need. This is why it’s rewarding to hear from our customers — whether it’s an online review, a letter, or directly from the customer. If you’re unsure why you should call us to clean and restore your damaged home, here’s what some of our past customers have had to say!

Our Customers’ Feedback

We called SERVPRO when we had a little fire in our home. They came to our home immediately and could not have been more professional and knowledgeable. Machines were brought in to get rid of smell, A/C ducts were cleaned out, and they did a fabulous job with cleaning my home.

— Lauren G. of Lenoir, NC

Jerry with SERVPRO came out twice to inspect my water damage. I’m a disabled veteran and short on funds. He gave me advice on how to manage it on my own, and he was respectful and kind, which is hard to find today. For this terrific service, I will give my future business loyalty and referrals locally. Highly recommended!

— Carolyn D. of Hickory, NC

SERVPRO is a fantastic company! Very efficient and responsive to my situation. Job was completed in a reasonable amount of time! Jonathan was very professional and great to work with throughout the entire process.

— Sean Y. of Morganton, NC

Your Local Cleanup Professionals

At SERVPRO of Alexander, Caldwell, Burke and Catawba Counties, we do everything we can to ensure our customers have a positive experience. Our team is friendly and professional, our quality assurance department makes sure you’re happy, and we’re fully transparent about our process and everything we do. If you need a local cleanup and restoration company, know that SERVPRO is available 24/7 to make any disaster look “Like it never even happened.”

How SERVPRO Can Serve Your Morganton Business

12/28/2021 (Permalink)

Brown sewage on the carpet in front of a TV stand Sewage and other biohazard incidents can strike without warning, so call for professional help when it does!

Every business tries to address its customers’ challenges and pain points. For example, SERVPRO of Alexander, Caldwell, Burke and Catawba Counties is known for its fire and water damage cleanup services, so when a business has a disaster, they call us so they can resume operations as quickly as possible. But we know Morganton businesses face other challenges, and that’s why offer services to address those problems.

How We Can Help

1. We create Emergency Ready Profiles. Most businesses acknowledge that a disaster would cost them a lot of money, but many of them don’t have the time or resources to prepare. That’s why SERVPRO offers free Emergency Ready Profiles (ERPs). One of our representatives will visit your location, gather some information, and create a custom ERP for your business. These profiles detail contact information, emergency shut-off locations, and more, so your staff knows exactly what to do in an emergency!

2. We clean up biohazard incidents. Biohazards can cause negative health effects and require proper gear and disposal methods to clean up. Depending on your business and the nature of the biohazard, you may not be equipped to handle such an incident. Fortunately, our team is trained and equipped to handle these types of situations! We can even clean and sanitize affected areas so you don’t have to worry about being exposed to pathogens.

3. We clean commercial HVAC systems. You might know that we clean residential HVAC systems, but our NADCA-certified staff is also trained to handle commercial systems! A duct cleaning can improve air quality and reduce stress on your system, which can preserve its life and save you money. Most importantly, it can help reduce allergies and other issues that may be affecting your workforce.

Professionals You Can Rely On

Our team knows that your Morganton business has more than fire and water damage to contend with. That’s why we aim to be a one-stop shop for all of your cleanup and restoration needs, including contents cleaning, odor removal, crime scene cleanup, and more. If you need our services (or want to just see if there’s something we can do), call SERVPRO of Alexander, Caldwell, Burke and Catawba Counties anytime at (828) 396-1070!

Keep Warm with These 3 Fireplace Safety Tips

12/14/2021 (Permalink)

Red popcorn bowl and hot chocolate in front of a lit fireplace Fireplaces are great when it's cold, but if you don't use them safely, they can pose a significant threat to your Lenoir, NC home.

Imagine sitting in front of your fireplace while holding a cup of hot cocoa. For many, this is a cherished moment that we look forward to each fall and winter. Now imagine losing control of that fire and much of your home in the process. As difficult as it may seem, fireplace-based house fires are relatively common. Since many Lenoir homes have fireplaces, you should know how you can safely use yours!

Keep Flammable Materials Away

Any time you have an open flame, you should keep the area around it clear. Unfortunately, a lot of homeowners keep decorations, furniture, and other items around their fireplace. All of these objects pose a potential fire risk, especially if they are highly flammable (such as Christmas trees). Any time you plan on using your fireplace, be sure to create a clearing of at least 3 feet.

Open the Flue While in Use

When you use your fireplace, you probably prefer the smoke went out the chimney instead of through your home. That’s what the flue damper is for — to open and close the flue so you can control what goes in and out of your chimney. Before you start the fire, make sure the flue is open so the smoke can travel through the chimney; otherwise it will have nowhere else to go and force its way into your living room.
It’s just as important to close it once the fire has been fully extinguished — you don’t want heat to escape!

Never Abandon Your Fireplace

One of the worst things you can do with a fire is abandon it. Any fire can get out of control within seconds, so it’s a bad idea to leave your fireplace unattended. If you’re going to leave the room for any amount of time, be sure to put out the flame or have somebody else monitor it!

Don’t Let Your Fireplace Ruin the Season

As temperatures continue to drop, we’ll find ourselves spending more and more time indoors. While we certainly encourage you to keep warm, we also encourage you to do so safely. If you do have a house fire, though, don’t fret! SERVPRO of Alexander, Caldwell, Burke and Catawba Counties is available 24/7 to clean up soot and smoke damage, so if you live in Lenoir, NC, call us any time at (828) 396-1070!

Why You May Need Disinfecting Services at Your Commercial Property

11/30/2021 (Permalink)

Person in white PPE spraying down office equipment Professional cleaning and sanitization services can keep your work space safe for customers and employees!

The COVID-19 Delta variant has once again highlighted the importance of keeping your workplace clean and sanitized. We’ve been offering cleaning and disinfecting services to local businesses that want to help reduce the spread of the coronavirus at their property, but we’ve actually offered this service for years. There are multiple reasons why you might want professional disinfecting services beyond this pandemic.

Localized Outbreaks in Schools and Gyms

Flu and stomach pathogens were prevalent issues long before COVID-19. Some schools have had to temporarily close to address outbreaks that were affecting many of their students. If your school, gym, or high-traffic business wants to get ahead of the problem, call us for a proactive cleaning. This won’t completely eliminate the problem since pathogens can be reintroduced into the environment, but it will help reduce the spread.

Sewage or Biohazard Incident

If you had a sewage backup or a biohazard incident at your place of business, you’re potentially exposing your employees and your customers to viruses and bacteria. In fact, that’s why OSHA has laid out specific protocols for handling these types of incidents. Fortunately, our team has the training and expertise to not only clean these incidents but also disinfect the affected areas. This can help limit the overall damage and keep your people safe!

Your Cleanup Professionals

SERVPRO of Alexander, Caldwell, Burke and Catawba Counties understands the risks that pathogens can present. That’s why we follow safety protocols and regulations to clean and disinfect businesses that might have a problem. If you need a professional cleaning or want to learn more about our Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned program, call us at (828) 396-1070!

3 Storm Preparation Tips

11/16/2021 (Permalink)

Man holding umbrella jogs past a white car in the rain Storm events happen multiple times a year, so take steps to prepare now!

Each year, weather events damage homes in our local community. In the last two years, for example, we had periods of flooding, and in 2018, we had bad freezes, the outer bands of Hurricane Florence, and heavy snowfall. We also had tornado damage in Hickory near the end of 2017. These events usually result in numerous homes and businesses suffering from some sort of storm damage. Because you never know how these storms will play out, it’s important you take steps to prepare in advance.

How to Prepare for A Storm Event

1. Always have a fully stocked emergency preparedness kit. An emergency preparedness kit is an essential tool for any type of disaster. Your kit may include several things, but there are usually staple items, such as a First-Aid kit, food, and water. For a full checklist, we recommend you visit Ready.org.

2. Prepare your home for potential damage. Each type of storm brings its own set of threats. An ice storm encourages pipes to freeze and burst. Hurricanes and tornadoes can down trees and turn unsecured objects into dangerous projectiles. Once you know what kind of storm you have, visit Ready.org to learn the types of damages you can expect, as well as how you can prepare.

3. Track the storm. It’s always a good idea to know when and where a storm is going to strike. Not only does this give you a timeline, but it can also help you understand the potential impact and whether you need to evacuate. Today’s phones will alert you of impending weather threats, but periodically checking on your local weather station can give you ample time to prepare.

When You Need Storm Professionals

Because storms can be destructive, they involve a lot of preparation. But if your Hickory, NC home or business does have storm damage, we’re your local disaster restoration company. Our IICRC-certified technicians can clean up after flooding, burst pipes, and more, so if you need help, call SERVPRO of Alexander, Caldwell, Burke and Catawba Counties!

What is A Puffback?

11/2/2021 (Permalink)

Empty living room covered in soot Soot can damage your belongings and leave a lingering odor. If you have a puffback, call our cleanup professionals today!

Imagine coming home one cold, fall evening to discover your living room is covered in soot. This is a reality many Morganton residents face in the cold seasons, often catching them by surprise. These incidents are called puffbacks, and they are more common than you might think. Fortunately, our team at SERVPRO of Alexander, Caldwell, Burke and Catawba Counties has helped hundreds of residents clean their soot-damaged homes, so we're all too familiar with these types of incidents.

Understanding Puffbacks

A puffback occurs when a furnace or boiler backfires and shoots soot into your home. These backfires occur because the heaters do not ignite properly and allow fuel to build up in the chamber. Once they do ignite, it can create anything from smoke to a small explosion, which pushes smoke and soot into the home and damages belongings.

Generally, puffbacks can be prevented with a little maintenance. For example, you should regularly check for oil leaks or soot, and you should make sure your heating system is clean and free of dust.

Cleaning Up a Puffback

Puffbacks are very messy and can be a major disturbance in your Morganton home. Although soot is very difficult to clean, our expert professionals here at SERVPRO of Alexander, Caldwell, Burke and Catawba Counties have both the techniques and the experience to clean and remove soot. If you have a puffback or any other soot-related incident, know that our team is always here to help!

How Your Toilet Can Damage Your Hickory Home

10/19/2021 (Permalink)

Wood-floor bathroom with white toilet, sink, and walls If your toilet isn't properly maintained, you can have water damage and other issues!

Loo. John. Commode. Whatever you call it, the toilet is an important feature in every home, yet most homeowners aren’t aware that these fixtures can cause a lot of damage. In fact, toilet-related damage can be some of the most expensive kinds of water damage to clean up and restore. That’s why it’s vital to understand how yours can create a disaster in your home. As your local cleanup and restoration professionals, our team here at SERVPRO of Alexander, Caldwell, Burke and Catawba Counties is sharing some of the ways your toilet can damage your Hickory, NC home.

Toilet Overflow

Nothing makes your stomach sink more than a toilet that backs up and overflows. While this can sometimes be a minor issue, it can also become a much larger problem. In situations where it’s only a low volume of clean water, you can likely dry it up yourself. But if there’s a lot of water or it’s contaminated (i.e. you just used it), that’s where you have a problem.

For starters, dirty toilet water contains bacteria, which we strongly recommend you call a professional to clean up. Even if you’re not worried about touching your own waste, the remaining bacteria can thrive and cause future health effects for you or your family if it's not properly cleaned up.

The other problem is that even if the water is clean, it can be too much for someone to handle if there's enough of it. Water will enter porous materials like drywall, which can cause them to warp and/or hold the moisture and foster mold growth. So even if the water appears to have been dried, it can eventually become a problem.

Toilet Leak

Your toilet isn’t likely to last forever. Like most things in your home, they eventually wear out and parts can fail. Whether it’s from the base, the supply line, or anywhere else, a toilet can cause a lot of water damage, especially if it goes unnoticed for an extended period of time. While this water is generally potable, it still poses a major threat to your home in the form of structural damage and mold growth.

Sewage Backup

Nobody wants to discover their main sewage line clogged and backed up their toilet. Yet this is a problem that plagues many homeowners each year. Like any case involving biohazardous materials, professional cleanup is required because they pose a major health risk. In addition to sewage cleanup, there will likely need to be extensive restoration work, depending on the extent of the damage.

Prevent Toilet-Related Damages

As we’ve demonstrated, your home’s toilet can be a potential source of unwanted damage. Because we often take these fixtures for granted, it’s important you remain alert to any changes and perform routine maintenance. But if your Hickory home does have a disaster, be sure to call our team here at SERVPRO of Alexander, Caldwell, Burke and Catawba Counties!

Signs Your Home Has Water Damage

10/5/2021 (Permalink)

Black mold growing where drywall had been removed If you see mold, you either have or have had ongoing water damage. You'll want to find cleanup professionals near you!

No Morganton homeowner wants to discover their home has water damage, but if they do, they'll want it to be shortly after it occurred. That’s because the longer water damage is left unaddressed, the more destructive it can be to your home. Unfortunately, it’s not always obvious that water’s present, so how do you know if your home’s been affected? SERVPRO of Alexander, Caldwell, Burke and Catawba Counties has dried and restored thousands of water-damaged homes, so here are a few signs to look out for!

Water Damage Symptoms

1. Bubbling or discoloration in your walls, floors, and ceilings. Short of seeing the incident yourself, one of the easiest ways you can tell you’ve had water damage is by noticing changes to your home’s walls, floors, and/or ceilings. For example, wallpaper may bubble, paint may peel, and hardwood floors may buckle. These and others are signs that you’ve had water damage.

2. You have mold. Mold spores are everywhere — even in your home — but they don’t pose a threat until they’re exposed to moisture for extended periods of time. Without water, mold spores wouldn’t be able to grow and spread their colonies, so if you notice mold around your home, you’ve more than likely had water damage.

3. Unusually high water bills. Paying attention to your water bill can help you save money, but it can also warn you of potential leaks in your home. An unusually high water bill indicates that — short of a billing error — more water is being consumed than usual. Oftentimes, this extra usage is caused by a pipe leaking somewhere in the home.

Your Water Damage Professionals in Morganton, NC

Water damage is problematic and often leads to other issues, which is why it’s crucial to call a disaster restoration company like SERVPRO of Alexander, Caldwell, Burke and Catawba Counties if you detect it in your home. Our professional team is always ready to serve any Morganton, NC resident, so give us a call today!

Understanding Flash Floods

9/21/2021 (Permalink)

Flooded creek in the middle of the woods Creeks and other bodies of water can quickly overflow, causing flash flooding to local homes.

Flooding can be a major problem, even here in the Unifour area. If that seems unlikely, recall that both Caldwell & Catawba Counties declared a state of emergencies due to flooding for the past two years. Because these incidents don’t happen very often, we’ve discovered many aren’t aware of how destructive flooding can be, or, in the case of flash flooding, how fast it can occur.

What is a Flash Flood?

While flooding can gradually occur over a long period of rain, it can also happen very quickly. Known as a flash flood, this type of flooding occurs within 6 hours of rainfall, but according to the National Weather Service, it often happens in as quickly as 3 hours. This type of natural disaster can happen anywhere — in a creek, your neighborhood, or even the main roads.

Driving & Flash Floods

Flash floods are a major problem when it comes to roadways, and they are responsible for many accidents. These waters are unpredictable, which is why it’s strongly recommended that you avoid driving when a flash flood warning is issued. So be sure to adhere to any warnings, and avoid driving at night, when it’s harder to see flooding.

Being Aware of Weather Events

Weather can cause a lot of damage to both you and your property. In fact, during each of the last few flood events, we received more than 300 calls from customers who had damage to their homes. While not all disasters can be avoided, having advance warnings can help you mitigate the effects. That’s why it’s important to regularly keep up with weather news, such as on Ray’s Weather. If you do have a disaster, though, be sure to call our professionally trained team here at SERVPRO of Alexander, Caldwell, Burke and Catawba Counties to make it “Like it never even happened.”