Recent Posts

Disinfecting versus Sanitizing

6/17/2020 (Permalink)

There is a common misunderstanding between the terms sanitized and disinfected. These have a tendency to be used interchangeably. 

It is very important, during the current pandemic, to understand the difference. When hiring a company to come and clean your home or commercial property, it is important to verify that they disinfect the space. Disinfection is the destruction of viruses, bacteria and fungi on surfaces. Sanitation is removing visible contamination and debris. 

When you call SERVPRO of Northwest Charlotte to proactively or re-actively clean your property, we use CDC approved disinfectants to clean surfaces. When you call SERVPRO of Northwest Charlotte you know your needs and concerns will be met with efficiency and professionalism. Our crew members are highly educated and trained in their field of expertise and will be there to help any questions and put your mind at ease during these stressful times. 

Plan for the Unthinkable

6/3/2020 (Permalink)

When running a business and owning a commercial property, there are a lot of details that go in to securing the facility. Setting up insurance, hiring the correct employees or companies to perform maintenance and ensuring the building is in tip top shape. 

It is also important to know where all of the emergency shut offs are. SERVPRO of Northwest Charlotte is here to provide a FREE service to help you feel more comfortable. Water losses and fire losses in the commercial industry can be devastating. Our main concern is helping you be able to return to performing your work in a safe environment. We have a program known as the Emergency Response Plan. We will come out to your sight, locate all of the electrical breakers, the water shut offs and so on. This document can be printed and given to who is in charge of facilities on site, or can be accessed through our FREE application that can be downloaded on a phone or tablet device. 

The document will explain in detail, as well as showing photos, of the locations of all the important "to knows". We also include all of the emergency departments that everyone may not be aware of. We include the information of the nearest hospital, the local fire department, the local police department, the water company and the electric company, etc. This program is to help  you prepare and stop disasters. Are you prepared?

Proactive Disinfecting: Helping businesses avoid COVID-19 emergencies

5/22/2020 (Permalink)

Commercial cleaning and disinfection when you need it the most Commercial cleaning and disinfection for Charlotte area Businesses.

As coronavirus restrictions begin to ease and more commercial activity is allowed throughout the Charlotte area, business owners and property managers remain focussed on maintaining healthy and safe work environments. How? With professional standby cleaning services that provide peace of mind to employees, vendors, clients and customers.

Commercial cleaning when you need it

Proper cleaning and disinfection routines can significantly reduce or eliminate COVID-19 on surfaces and objects in workplaces, offices and facilities. With deep cleaning and disinfecting now integrated into the new normal, businesses can rely on experts who deal specifically with biological contaminants. 

The SERVPRO of Northwest Charlotte commercial cleaning team is fit-tested for full-face respirators and trained in biohazard cleaning protocols. Our deep cleaning experts are employees, not contractors, with more resources and the most effective equipment

With our standby cleaning services, business owners can minimize disruptions while still ensuring their offices, buildings and facilities are thoroughly and professionally cleaned. For example, if a property manager calls us with a last-minute request for a facility deep cleaning that same night, we can take care of it. A contractor, however, has limited resources and might not be able to offer such a quick turnaround. 

Viral cleanups: What we do, what we know

Whether you're addressing ducts, carpet, vents or equipment, ongoing maintenance cleaning will help keep your property looking professional and help prevent some maintenance issues. But the coronavirus pandemic requires business owners to disinfect any high-touch surfaces regularly.  

Examples include tables, hard-backed chairs, doorknobs, light switches, countertops, handles, desks, toilets, faucets, sinks, fixtures and electronics (phone receivers and keypads, computers, keyboards, tablets, touch screens, kiosks and remote controls). 

Other commercial spaces that may require deep cleaning and disinfecting include:

  • Sales counters
  • Water fountains
  • Soda and snack machines
  • Kitchens, break rooms and food areas
  • Bathrooms
  • Meeting rooms and classrooms
  • Shelving and racks
  • Carpets, rugs and drapes
  • Furnaces and air conditioners
  • Elevators and stair and escalator handrails
  • Playground and fitness equipment

Whether the job requires sanitizing agents, germicides or antimicrobial treatments, SERVPRO of Northwest Charlotte only uses OSHA-approved cleaning agents to eliminate contaminants. And, our cleaning experts adhere to Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and local authority guidelines related to COVID-19 exposure and cleaning procedures.

Standby cleaning at your service

Although SERVPRO of Northwest Charlotte is part of a national network of 1,700-plus franchises, we’re locally owned and operated and part of the Mecklenburg, Lincoln and Gaston communities. 

Our team can handle any commercial cleaning needs: proactive cleaning when there aren’t confirmed coronavirus cases or known coronavirus exposure; deep cleaning for possible coronavirus exposure; and reactive cleaning if there’s a confirmed coronavirus case. For questions, contact us anytime at (704) 393-7890 or request help online

Certified Cleaning and Disinfecting

5/21/2020 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Northwest Charlotte is here to help you feel confident with reopening your business or commercial property. It is important to make your employees and customer feel safe and confident in returning by creating a safe, and clean environment. Trust in us to help you! We have implemented use of Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned signs that should make your employees and customers feel safe when returning!

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

SERVPRO of Northwest Charlotte uses hospital-grade disinfectant, as recommended by the CDC. While there is no product tested against this particular strain of virus, we are following all guidelines provided by the CDC and local authorities. 

SERVPRO of Northwest Charlotte is prepared to clean your business/commercial property. Give us a call at 704-393-7890.

Reactive Disinfecting - "Like it never even happened."

5/15/2020 (Permalink)

When someone known to have COVID-19 is exposed to a workplace or facility, the response must be thorough and swift, while keeping employees and customers safe and minimizing disruption to business operations. 

A confirmed coronavirus case requires corporate and commercial business owners and property managers to immediately respond to avoid further exposure. In these emergency situations, SERVPRO of Northwest Charlotte recommends enhanced or reactive cleaning as the most effective way of deep cleaning and disinfecting commercial spaces "Like it never even happened.”

How does reactive cleaning work?

To institute and maintain a healthy and safe work environment, we customize services based on the specific needs of a facility. Our primary and most effective cleaning technique involves hand wiping surfaces and fogging. This process uses an ultra-low volume or electrostatic sprayer to apply disinfectant to surfaces. We also may use a cleaning protocol developed by a third-party industrial hygienist.

The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) also recommends opening windows and doors to increase air circulation and closing off all areas used by the infected person. Wait 24 hours (or as long as possible), then clean and disinfect offices, bathrooms, common areas, shared electronic equipment and any other areas the infected person may have used. 

There’s no need for additional disinfecting once it’s been more than seven days since the sick person used or visited the facility; however, business owners should continue routine proactive cleaning and disinfecting.

Commercial cleaning expertise using specialized products

While there’s currently no product tested against the COVID-19 strain of the coronavirus, SERVPRO of Northwest Charlotte follows all guidelines provided by the CDC and local authorities. That includes using a labeled hospital-grade disinfectant and other EPA-approved products. 

Additionally, we’re a Clean Trust Certified Firm through the Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC), the certifying body for the cleaning and restoration industry. Many employees on our 30-person team hold certifications in applied microbial remediation and structural drying, rug and carpet cleaning, odor control, water damage restoration, upholstery and fabric cleaning, fire and smoke damage restoration, and lead-based paint activities and renovation.

24/7 reactive cleaning assistance

Although SERVPRO of Northwest Charlotte is part of a national network of 1,700-plus franchises, we’re locally owned and operated and part of the Mecklenburg, Lincoln and Gaston communities. 

Our deep cleaning experts are employees, not contractors. That means our team can respond faster to reactive cleaning emergencies with more resources and the most effective equipment. For questions, contact us anytime at (704) 393-7890 or request help online

Staying Ahead with Disinfecting Cleans: The importance of proactive cleaning through COVID-19

5/4/2020 (Permalink)

importance of proactive cleaning through COVID-19 Proactive cleaning through COVID-19

Being a proactive corporate and commercial business owner or property manager means taking control of a situation by causing things to happen instead of waiting to respond after things happen. This ‘staying ahead’ approach is especially critical for Charlotte-area businesses during the current coronavirus pandemic. 

For example, your office may not have been exposed to COVID-19, but you still want your employees and customers to feel secure. One way to maintain a healthy and safe work environment is through proactive cleaning. 

While it doesn’t prevent or protect buildings from future contamination, proactive cleaning provides peace of mind. It ensures environments are thoroughly and professionally cleaned, according to Centers for Disease Control (CDC) specifications. 

How does proactive cleaning work?

Deep cleaning and disinfecting has moved up on the list of priorities for businesses and institutions, but how does proactive cleaning work? SERVPRO of Northwest Charlotte has developed a proactive cleaning and disinfection protocol based CDC specifications. 

Through years of experience in dealing with biological contaminants, we’ve identified three categories of contamination:

  1. Proactive cleaning when there aren’t any confirmed coronavirus cases or known coronavirus exposure. 
  2. Cleaning for possible coronavirus exposure. 
  3. Reactive cleaning when there’s a confirmed coronavirus case. 

Proactive commercial cleaning goes beyond the scope of work that a regular janitorial team performs daily. It involves a facility or structure deep cleaning and disinfection -- from kitchen vents to carpets to manufacturing equipment. 

Steps may include cleaning porous and nonporous surfaces, disinfecting nonporous surfaces, cleaning and disinfecting equipment, tools and supplies, and disposing of waste.

Planning for deep cleaning 

Before conducting commercial cleaning, we ask customers for floor plans of their building or facility ahead of time. If floor plans aren’t available, our production manager will visit the location before the start of the project to determine how many people we’ll need, the best way for our team to move through the building, where we’ll start and end and if we’ll split up our team, so one group cleans the office while others take care of the warehouse. 

Having a proactive cleaning strategy in place before the work begins allows our deep cleaning experts to tackle the project efficiently and thoroughly. 

24/7 commercial cleaning assistance

SERVPRO of Northwest Charlotte is locally owned and operated as part of a national network of 1,700-plus franchises. Our deep cleaning experts are employees, not contractors, which means our team can respond very quickly and with more resources. For questions, contact us anytime at (704) 393-7890 or request help online

The Deep Clean: Disinfecting workplaces, offices and facilities

4/21/2020 (Permalink)

The Deep Clean: Disinfecting workplaces, offices and facilities Disinfecting workplaces, offices and facilities. SERVPRO of Northwest Charlotte is ready to help 24/7/

During an unprecedented global public health issue, “disinfecting” means more than singing a 20-second tune in your head while washing your hands. With coronavirus and COVID-19 affecting our everyday lives in some way, deep cleaning is now incorporated into our routines as part of the new normal.

This especially holds true for corporate and commercial business owners and property managers who are stepping up their sanitizing game to institute and maintain healthy and safe work environments. Proper cleaning and disinfection routines can significantly reduce or eliminate coronavirus on surfaces and objects in workplaces, offices and facilities. 

Commercial cleaning = Peace of mind 

While the majority of Charlotte-area businesses haven’t been affected by coronavirus contamination, owners are using this time to stay proactive through commercial cleaning. With many employees now working from home and essential facilities operating with minimal staff, it’s a convenient opportunity for deep cleaning. 

Knowing a workspace or business has followed COVID-19 exposure and cleaning procedure guidelines provides peace of mind for employers, employees, vendors, clients and customers. They can feel confident the environment was thoroughly and professionally cleaned according to Centers for Disease Controls (CDC) and local authorities. 

Examples of high-touch surfaces

In the workplace, frequently touched surfaces are tables, hard-backed chairs, doorknobs, light switches, countertops, handles, desks, toilets, faucets, sinks, fixtures and electronics (phone receivers and keypads, computers, keyboards, tablets, touch screens, kiosks and remote controls).

Other commercial spaces may include sales counters, water fountains, soda and snack machines, kitchens, break rooms and food areas, bathrooms, meeting rooms and classrooms, shelving and racks, carpets, rugs and drapes, furnaces and air conditioners, stair and escalator handrails, elevators, and playground or fitness equipment.

How long does coronavirus stay on surfaces?

While the World Health Organization doesn’t know how long COVID-19 survives on surfaces as an infection threat, it appears to behave like other coronaviruses. Studies suggest coronaviruses may last on surfaces for a few hours or up to several days, depending on the surface type and the environment’s temperature and humidity level. 

Products to eliminate germs and viruses 

Several chemical germicides are effective when used in proper concentration for a sufficient length of time, including chlorine, hydrogen peroxide, detergents (soap), iodine-based antiseptics and alcohols. The Environmental Protection Agency provides a helpful list of registered disinfectants and products for use against COVID-19.

If you don’t have access to a disinfectant product, you can clean with a chlorine bleach solution. For floors and more substantial surface cleaning, use five tablespoons (1/3 cup) bleach per gallon of water. For spray bottle applications, mix four teaspoons of bleach per quart of water. You can also use any alcohol solution that has at least 70% alcohol.

Techniques for cleaning and disinfecting workplace surfaces

CDC offers these everyday steps for cleaning and disinfecting

  • Always wear gloves to protect your hands from harsh chemicals.
  • Never mix cleaning products. 
  • Always clean with a detergent or soap and water solution before disinfecting. This removes COVID-19-carrying particles on surfaces, which reduces the viral load before disinfection begins. It allows the disinfectant to be more effective against the remaining virus.
  • To properly disinfect using Clorox or Lysol wipes, be sure to clean only one item at a time. To sanitize the surface, let it remain visibly wet for 10 seconds. Sanitizing reduces germs to a generally safe level. To disinfect, use enough wipes to keep the surface wet for four minutes, which will kill all surface germs.
  • Always follow the directions on disinfectant products by letting the liquid remain on the surface while it does its cleaning job. If you spray cleaner on a surface, then immediately wipe it off with a dry paper towel, it reduces its germ-killing effectiveness.
  • For homemade chlorine bleach solutions, use a cloth to apply it to surfaces and let it stand for 3 to 5 minutes before rinsing with clean water. 
  • When cleaning soft surfaces, such as carpet, rugs and drapes, use soap and water or safe-to-use cleaners. If possible, launder the items according to the manufacturer’s instructions (using the warmest appropriate water setting) and let the pieces dry completely. 

Commercial cleaning levels

SERVPRO of Northwest Charlotte is a member of the Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC), the certifying body for the cleaning and restoration industry. We adhere to CDC and local authority guidelines related to COVID-19 exposure and cleaning procedures. Our primary cleaning technique includes hand wiping surfaces and fogging, a process that uses an ultra-low volume or electrostatic sprayer to apply disinfectant to surfaces. 

We focus on three levels of disinfecting: proactive, high-touch and enhanced or reactive cleaning. Proactive cleaning measures, such as a single wipe of high-touch surfaces and fogging applications, are suitable for facilities without any known cases of COVID-19 exposure. A workplace or facility that may have been exposed through an employee or vendor will require multiple wipes of high-touch surface areas and fogging. 

Reactive cleaning 

When someone known to have COVID-19 has been exposed to the workplace or facility, we recommend enhanced or reactive cleaning. In these cases, we customize services based on the specific needs of a facility. And, we may use a cleaning protocol developed by a third-party industrial hygienist.

Additionally, the CDC recommends opening windows and doors to increase air circulation and closing off all areas used by the infected person. Wait 24 hours (or as long as possible), then clean and disinfect offices, bathrooms, common areas, shared electronic equipment and any other areas the infected person may have used. 

24/7 commercial cleaning assistance

Although SERVPRO of Northwest Charlotte is part of a national network of 1,700-plus franchises, we’re locally owned and operated and part of the community. Our deep cleaning experts are employees, not contractors, which means our team can respond very quickly and with more resources. For questions, contact us anytime at (704) 393-7890 or request help online

We are Deep Cleaning Experts

3/23/2020 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of Northwest Charlotte 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. We are local and serve the Charlotte NC area.

Specialized Training

We are prepared to clean and apply disinfectant 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:

  • Offices
  • Retail Spaces
  • Sales Counters
  • Water Fountains
  • Kitchen/Food Areas
  • Bathrooms
  • Schools/Classrooms
  • Shelving/Racks
  • 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.

Our Certifications

  • AMRT - Applied Microbial Remediation Technician
  • ASD - Applied Structural Drying Technician
  • CCT - Carpet Cleaning Technician
  • ECTP - Employee Certification Training Program
  • IICRC Certified Firm
  • OCT - Odor Control Technician
  • RCT - Rug Cleaning Technician
  • UFT - Upholstery & Fabric Cleaning Technician

Call Today for a Proactive Cleaning

If your home or business needs deep cleaning services, call the experts today – SERVPRO of Northwest Charlotte at (704) 393-7890.

Mold Tips - What to Look for and How to Handle Mold

3/4/2020 (Permalink)

What is Mold?

  • Mold is a fungus, a multicellular plant-like organism, that does not produce chlorophyll as plants do.  Fungi include mildew, mushrooms and yeast. 
  • Fungi is everywhere and we breathe mold spores everyday. In normal doses, typical of outdoors, fungi are not a threat to human health and may even have positive effects.
  • Molds ripen cheeses and give them flavor. Some mushrooms are deliciously good to eat. Yeasts cause fermentation that produce alcoholic beverages and some breads.

Causes of Indoor Mold Growth

  • Mold releases tiny spores in order to reproduce. These tiny spores can become airborne when disturbed and settle on surfaces where they lie dormant for extended periods waiting for ideal growth conditions.
  • The settled spores require three conditions to grow:
  • Food source: Organic materials
  • Temperature: 68-86 degrees
  • Moisture: Relative humidity above 60%
  • Spores can germinate after only 12 hours in some conditions. They more commonly germinate in the 24-48 hour range.

Once You Suspect Mold

Step 1: Contact an Industrial Hygienist (IH) or an Indoor Environmental Professional (IEP). An IH/IEP will perform a visual inspection and sample the air and surfaces where suspected mold growth is present.  The samples are then sent to a lab to analyze and determine the type of mold that exists.  Once the lab report is received the IH/IEP provides a report and outlines a protocol for a certified mold remediation contractor to adhere to.

Step 2: Contact SERVPRO to remediate your mold contamination. We will schedule an appointment for a production manager to visit the property and provide an estimated cost of services based upon the protocol written by the IH/IEP.

Step 3: Once the estimate is approved we will schedule a date to begin the mold remediation services.

Step 4: Upon completion of the mold remediation it is recommended that post clearance sampling be performed by the IH/IEP to ensure the remediation services were successful.

Prevention

  • Keep humidity levels in the home below 60%.
  • Ventilate and/or dehumidify attics, crawl spaces, and basements.
  • Keep bathrooms dry and well ventilated
  • Clean, dry or remove anything from your home that is water damaged
  • Watch for condensation and wet spots. 

Winter Weather Home Hazards

1/20/2020 (Permalink)

Winter Weather Home Hazards

When we think about winter, it is generally skiing or tubing, or that dreadful drive to work in the snow. We often forget how important it is to protect our homes.

Frozen Pipes and Prevention

One of the ways to protect against damage to your home during the winter is to makes sure your pipes and faucets are properly prepared for the colder weather. When it comes to any outdoor faucets it is important to make sure you detached any hose and apply a faucet cover. When it comes to interior pipes there are a few options; allow warm or hot water to run through the pipes by letting them drip overnight, insulate interior piping or if you are going out of town for an extended period of time, you can shut off water supply and drain the system. Frozen pipes can cause pipes to crack or burst, and this can allow up to 250 gallons of water to spew into your home causing significant water damage.

Home Fires and Prevention

Another common cause for home damage during the winter is house fires. Insurance companies and fire departments prepare for an influx of fire claims during the winter months because the number of home fires increase drastically. The leading causes are the way we heat our homes, electrical fires, and candles. The way we heat our homes are common causes of house fires. Space heaters and baseboard heaters need to be cleaned and failure to do so is the leading contributor, as well as placing objects too close to the equipment. Electrical fires are extremely common in the winters due to overloading circuits with certain appliances. Candles in the winter are commonly used and often cause fires from being knocked over or having flammable objects too close. Garage fires are a top source of house fires in the winter because the number of items stormed in the garage and they are generally highly flammable. Flammable materials should be stored in a shed away from the home.

Roof Leaks and Prevention

Leading causes for roof leaks in the winter include ice damming and loose or missing shingles. Ice damming happens when snow accumulates on the roof and begins to melt, the water runs down the source of the roof and as it hits the bottom edges of the roof the cold air causes it to freeze and build up. Once there is a build up of ice, the water has no where to go but underneath the shingles and it will trickle inside the home. To prevent ice damming, you can get an ice rake to remove the ice. Missing and loose shingles can also cause interior water damage. You can prevent water damage from missing or loose shingles by checking your roof periodically before and during the winter to make sure no shingles have become loose and brittle during the cold weather.