Recent Community Posts

Ways To Support Local Farmers

7/27/2021 (Permalink)

“How to Support Local Farmers” with SERVPRO logo and photo of vegetables growing Supporting Local Farms in Charlotte

Summer is a great time to support the local community in Charlotte, NC, and SERVPRO of South Mecklenburg County suggests doing that by supporting local farmers! There are many ways that you can help support local farmers, and in return, you can have healthy fruits and vegetables to share with friends and family! Check out a few ways how you can support local:

Shop at a Farmer’s Market

Farmer’s Markets are a way for local growers to sell their produce and can be a large part of their income making it a great way to support them and the community. South Mecklenburg County has multiple farmer’s markets that can be attended by the public! There is the Charlotte Regional Farmers Market, open Tuesday through Saturday from 8 am to 6 pm, that has a market venue with small-scale farmers, bakers, and artisans featured. Also, the Downtown Pineville Farmers Market on Saturdays from 9 am to 1 pm features vegetables, fresh flowers, baked goods, and fruit from local farmers. These markets are a great way to support local farmers.

Visit a Pick-It-Yourself Farm

Visiting farms directly to pick your own produce also supports farmers and the community, and it's a fun family-friendly activity. You can visit and pick your own fruit including strawberries, blueberries, and apples. For a fun day picking fresh strawberries, visit Hunter Farm in Charlotte, NC.

Sign Up For A CSA

CSA stands for Community Supported Agriculture and is a great way to support local farmers directly. You directly support farmers by signing up for a “share” of the farm’s produce each week or biweekly for the duration of the summer. In return, you receive fresh vegetables and fruit each week. A local farm in South Mecklenburg County is Renfrow Farms that has CSA programs in the late spring, summer, and fall and features fruits, vegetables, and honey from 70 local beehives.

Supporting your local farmers in South Mecklenburg County is easier than you might think! For more local suggestions, recipes, and home tips, visit our blog. And don’t forget, if you ever experience a water or fire disaster in your home, give SERVPRO of South Mecklenburg County a call day or night.

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How to Make Homemade Ice Cream

7/19/2021 (Permalink)

“Homemade Ice Cream Recipe” with SERVPRO logo and ice cream graphics Easy Homemade Ice Cream Recipe

It’s summer and it’s hot in Charlotte, NC,! If you find yourself looking for a way to enjoy the day and cool off from the summer heat, ice cream could be the answer! Ice cream is the perfect way to cool off, and it can also be a fun way to make something new! Did you know that you can make your own homemade ice cream? 

Making your own ice cream isn’t as difficult as it may sound! You don’t need an ice cream maker to have your own frozen, creamy treat. Follow this simple “plastic bag” method recipe to have a cold treat: 

Ingredients

2 cups heavy whipping cream or dairy-free alternative

Any Desired Add-In (chocolate chips, sprinkles, etc.)

Directions

  1. Whip 2 cups of heavy cream (or dairy-free alternative for vegan/lactose-free) with a whisk. 
  2. Add any flavors and toppings you may want! Some ideas include sprinkles, cookie pieces, cocoa powder, or chocolate chips! Simply add them to the heavy cream mixture before putting the mixture in the bag.
  3. Place the heavy cream mixture in quart size seal bags (can be purchased at the grocery store!), squeezing out as much air as possible. Seal tightly. 
  4. Then, place the quart size bags into a gallon size resealable bag and fill the gallon bag with about 4 cups of crushed ice and sprinkle with 4 tablespoons of coarse salt. The salt is added to lower the freezing point of the ice and creates an extra cold environment that absorbs heat, causing the ice cream to freeze. 
  5. Wrap the gallon bag in a towel and vigorously shake! Make sure that the ice is surrounding the ice cream mixture constantly. 
  6. Shake for 5-8 minutes or until the ice cream mixture is frozen. 



Add any toppings to your ice cream treat that you may want! Store your homemade ice cream in the freezer in an airtight container to prevent ice crystals from forming. You can save your ice cream and eat it later this way. 

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Easy Packable Lunches for Jobs On The Go

6/28/2021 (Permalink)

“2 easy packable lunches from our team” with pictures of a wrap and pasta salad and SERVPRO logo Easy Packable Lunches for Work On The Go

With many people returning to work in Charlotte, NC, you might not know what to bring for lunch anymore. Our SERVPRO of South Mecklenburg County team never stopped working, which means we had over a year to perfect lunches that are perfect to eat on the go. 

The perfect lunch on the go meant no microwaving, and the meal had to be able to sit in a lunchbox until it was time to eat. With all that time and those two requirements it came down to two meals: the chicken & bacon ranch wrap and a greek pasta salad. Keep reading to learn how to make these two easy and delicious lunches.

Chicken & Bacon Ranch Wrap

Ingredients:

2 oz. deli sliced chicken

2 pieces of cooked bacon

½ cup lettuce

½ diced tomato

1 tbs ranch

1 tortilla

Instructions:

  1. Lay tortilla flat and line with lettuce
  2. Layer all other ingredients onto the wrap
  3. Roll the wrap tightly and cut it in half.

Tips:

Make sure the tomatoes are dried with a paper towel to prevent them from making the wrap soggy

Add avocado slices to upgrade your wrap. 

Greek Pasta Salad

Ingredients:

16 Ounces Bow Tie or Rotini Pasta

1 Cucumber Dices

1 Pint Grape Tomatoes Halved

1 Bell Pepper Diced

½ Cup Sliced Pitted Kalamata Olives

½ Cup Feta Cheese Cubed or Crumbled

? Cup Red Onion Diced

1 Cup Greek Vinaigrette Dressing

Instructions:

  1. Cook pasta al dente according to the package. Once cooked, rinse under cold water.
  2. Combine pasta with all other ingredients in a large bowl and toss until evenly coated in dressing. 
  3. Refrigerate until ready to eat. 


Whether you are looking for an easy lunch recipe for daily lunches, or you are trying to feed a family after a water or fire emergency, we hope these recipes help. If you need help with water, fire, or any other type of disaster restoration, call SERVPRO of South Mecklenburg County at  (704) 840-6112, day, or night.

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What Goes in an Emergency Supply Kit?

6/21/2021 (Permalink)

 “Building an emergency supply kit” with outline of house, desk, and car with SERVPRO logo How to build an emergency supply kit

Being prepared for an emergency is essential. When there is a flood, fire, or other disasters it is easy to get overwhelmed and panic, but when you have an emergency preparedness kit you can relax knowing you and your family have supplies for the next few days. 

So what goes into a disaster supply kit? It is usually a collection of basic household items that are essential in an emergency. These supplies should be able to sustain your family for a few days if necessary. As you bring together all of your items together the best way to store them is in easy-to-carry containers like plastic bins or duffel bags. 

The Basics

When building your kit, start with the basics. These are items that you cannot go without if you are stuck without any other supplies for two days. The things on this list should be included in your home, work, and car emergency kit. These items should be stored in a water-tight container to ensure that they will not be damaged in the event of a water-related emergency. 

  • Water (one gallon per person per day)
  • Food (at least three days of non-perishable food)
  • Battery-powered radio
  • Flashlight
  • First aid kit
  • Extra batteries and a battery-powered phone charger
  • Whistle
  • Masks (to filter contaminated air)
  • Can opener
  • Wrench or pliers (to turn utilities on or off)
  • Moist towelettes, garbage bags, and plastic ties. 

Additional Supplies

Once you have the basics in your emergency kit, you can take it a step further to keep you and your family more comfortable. Below is a shortlist of the most common supplies to add to an emergency kit, however, your essentials list may look a bit different. Sit down with your family and discuss the items that each family member might require in an emergency. 

  • Prescription and nonprescription medications
  • Eyeglasses 
  • Infant formula, bottles, diapers, and wipes
  • Pet food and extra water
  • Cash 
  • Insurance policies, identification, bank account records, and other important documents (save these electronically and in a fireproof & waterproof container)
  • Sleeping bags
  • Extra shoes and clothes
  • Fire extinguisher
  • Matches

Car Safety

Whether you are planning a long trip, or just preparing for an unexpected emergency on your normal daily drive, having an emergency preparedness kit in your car could save your life. Your kit should include the same basics of a normal kit, but you also need to add a few more items. 

  • Jumper cables
  • Flares or reflective cones or triangles
  • Ice scraper
  • Car cellphone charger
  • Blanket
  • Map
  • Sand or cat litter for traction 

Where to Store Your Kit

Knowing where to keep your kit can be difficult. We can’t always know where we will be when an emergency strikes, so it is best to make multiple kits for different locations. The largest kit with the most items should be kept in your home. This kit should be kept in a designated place so that all family members know where to find the kit in case of an emergency. It is best to keep this kit on a shelf in case water enters your home. The second kit should be stored in your place of work. Your work kit should include the basics to sustain you for at least 24 hours, as well as a pair of comfortable shoes. Finally, you should store an emergency kit in your car. This kit should include supplies for multiple different environments as you could be stuck in the snow or the heat. 

Maintain Your Kit

Just putting your kit together and leaving it could mean by the time you need it your supplies are no longer safe to use. It is important to go through your emergency kit once a year to ensure food or medications are not out of date. Rethinking your supply kit every year is essential. As children are born and grow older, pets are brought into the family, and health needs change, your emergency-ready kit should too. 

SERVPRO of South Mecklenburg County understands that emergencies can be scary and can leave you unsure of what to do next. Once you and your family are safe and there is no danger present, be sure to call us at (704) 840-6112 as soon as possible. Any damage that may have occurred in your home should always be remediated as soon as possible. 

For more information on all aspects of your emergency ready kit, head to Ready.gov. Learn more about car safety here

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Day Trip To Grandfather Mountain

6/6/2021 (Permalink)

“Day trip to grandfather mountain” with watercolor mountains and the SERVPRO logo Daytrip from Charlotte to Grandfather Mountain

Here at SERVPRO of South Mecklenburg County, we recognize that work can take a toll. It is important to manage your time outside of work, and doing physical activities is a great way to better your mental and physical health. Following a year-long pandemic, getting fresh air is more important than ever. Today we will be discussing a potential day-long adventure that is both healthy and enjoyable for people of all ages. 

Grandfather Mountain

Grandfather Mountain is a 300-million-year-old mountain located in the Northwest Region of North Carolina. The mountain is home to a wide array of animal and plant life, and its peak is located 6,000 feet up. Located in Linville, the mountain is about a two-hour drive from Charlotte. Taking the family to the mountain would be a perfect opportunity to get some fresh air and enjoy a scenic hike. The hike can last anywhere from 4-5.5 hours, so combined with the drive, a trip to Grandfather Mountain can be expected to be a day-long adventure. With this hike being quite long, it is of the utmost importance that you bring water and stay hydrated throughout the day. 

The Three Peaks

This hike has three different peaks that each come with different time and distance requirements. MacRae peak is a more manageable goal for new hikers as it is the closest and least strenuous hike of the three. To reach Attic Window Peak, simply climb down the ladder from MacRae peak and continue on the trail for an additional .3 miles. For those looking for a challenge, Calloway peak will be right up your alley. Calloway Peak is the highest point on the mountain, reaching a height of 5,964 feet. 

Other Outdoor Activities

For those that don’t like to hike, Grandfather Mountain offers live wildlife exhibits as well as a mile-high swinging bridge for those brave enough to try it. 

Local Favorites

Following a strenuous hike, it is important for everyone involved to get much-needed nutrients in their system. Luckily there are a handful of highly-rated restaurants just miles from the bottom of the mountain. Old Hampton Store and BBQ is a perfect candidate with a 4.5-star rating. Additionally, Mildred’s Grill is well respected and less than a mile from the parking lot at the base of the mountain. If you are looking for something sweeter, Kilwin’s Ice Cream Shop will be the perfect destination. With a plethora of highly-rated restaurants nearby, we highly recommend taking a breather after exploring the historic Grandfather Mountain. 

What Next?

SERVPRO of South Mecklenburg County hopes you decide to take a journey to Grandfather Mountain in the near future! Don't forget to take proper hiking gear and plenty of fluids to stay hydrated during the hike. We hope that every day is as relaxed as this one, but If you happen to have water damage in the near future, feel free to call SERVPRO of South Mecklenburg County

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Memorial Day 2021 Safety

5/30/2021 (Permalink)

On Memorial Day this Monday, May 31st, we remember and honor those who fought and served our country. 

Memorial Day not only is a time to reflect and remember those who served our country, but also a time to take a moment to relax and spend time with loved ones. 

Memorial Day weekend is often when the weather begins to warm up in Charlotte, NC again for summer, and people begin to travel and spend more time outside. 

With the increased travel and activity for the long weekend, you can take steps to prepare and stay safe during Memorial Day weekend.

Driving Safety

Roads will be busier during the long weekend, especially with people having time off of work and traveling. To stay safe on the roads, be well-rested and alert when driving, use seat belts, observe the speed limit, and follow the rules of the road. Make sure you are extra cautious. If you plan on drinking alcohol, designate a driver who is not under the influence and can drive safely. Be sure to have enough gas to get to your destination, and always carry an emergency supply kit in your car in case of emergency.

Grilling Safety

Everyone loves to grill during the holiday weekend. When grilling during the holidays, be sure to always supervise a barbecue grill when in use. Grills can become very hot, and if left unattended, could burn someone or start a fire nearby. To prevent this, never grill indoors, and do not grill around tents, campers, or other enclosed areas. Make sure that pets and children stay away from the grill to avoid getting burned. Use long-handled tools on the grill to keep the chef safe and away from the flame. 

Water Safety

Recreation in the water is often popular during Memorial Day weekend because the weather has just begun to get warmer. If swimming, be sure to always monitor children near the water and actively be within an arms’ reach to assist kids. If in the pool, be sure to follow rules and regulations and be aware of whether or not a lifeguard is on duty. On lakes and rivers, be sure to pack and wear a U.S. Coast Guard approved life jacket. Come prepared for any situation, and know what to do if someone is in trouble in the water, and call 911 if needed.

Be safe this Memorial Day! For more safety recommendations, read all of SERVPRO of South Mecklenburg County's blogs on our website, or call us at (704) 840-6112. We strive to keep your home and your family safe this holiday season!

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Creating an Emergency Pet Plan

5/17/2021 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of South Mecklenburg County knows that pets are like family which is why we created this guide so you can keep your pets safe during an emergency. It is always a good idea to have a plan so you are ready for emergencies, but you should also include pets in that emergency plan. 

3 Things To Keep Your Pets Safe

  1. If it isn’t safe for you to be in your home during an emergency, your pet isn’t safe either. If you have to leave your home for any reason, be sure to take your pets with you. 
  2. Include pet supplies in your emergency supply kit.
  3. Have an emergency evacuation plan that includes your pets. If you need to evacuate be prepared with a list of hotels that are pet-friendly. Since many hotels will not allow cats or dogs, even during an emergency, it is a good idea to know the local hotels that will allow pets. 

Emergency Pet Kit

  • Leash, harness, and pet carrier 
  • Bowls for food and water 
  • Food, water, and any medications your pets need
  • Poop bags, litter box, and fresh litter
  • Copies of medical records
  • Current photo of you with your pet in case they get lost
  • Information on feeding schedules, medications, medical conditions, and information for your vet
  • Pet bed and toys

Emergency Pet Plan 

  • Have multiple hotels on your emergency plan that allow pets. During weather-related emergencies, hotels can fill up quickly so it is important to always have backup options. 
  • Have a list of friends and family who can care for your pet in an emergency.
  • Practice having your pets enter their carriers so that during an emergency they will not be scared. 
  • Have your pet microchipped or invest in a collar with a tracking device. 

For more information on creating your emergency pet plan visit the American Red Cross and the Humane Society website.

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Staying Safe As Temperatures Rise

5/14/2021 (Permalink)

As the temperatures rise, so does fun in the sun. Families travel near and far, go on outdoor adventures and cool off in the nearest pool or ocean. Wherever the warm days may take you, it is important to remember that high summer temperatures can pose a threat to the safety of you and your family.

Charlotte, NC summers can be long and hot, but with proper education, the heat doesn’t have to hold you back from your summer plans. 

How to Stay Safe During Summer Heat

  • Stay as hydrated as possible. Keep drinking water even if you do not feel thirsty and continue refilling that water bottle. 
  • Wear loose-fitting, light-colored clothing. Lighter shades reflect light, while darker colors draw the sunlight towards you. Just remember, light colors will cool you off, dark colors will heat you up.
  • Limit your outdoor activity, especially midday when the sun is at its hottest. Try to plan outings when it is cooler in the morning or in the evening. 
  • Know the symptoms of heat-related illnesses such as heat cramps, exhaustion, and stroke so that you know how to effectively react. 
  • Look for ways to help your community.  Share how you are staying safe this summer on Facebook or other social media outlets where your friends and family engage with your posts. 

Heat is not the only danger to you and your family during the summer. Summer storms and other weather hazards can put your Pineville, NC, home at risk too. As temperatures rise, so does the likelihood of certain weather hazards. The National Weather Service (NWS) advises you to be ready if the following weather hazards arise:

  • Floods
  • Drought
  • Rip Currents
  • Air Quality
  • Wildfire
  • Lightning

Be sure to check in next week for more information on summer storms and how you can keep your whole family and home safe. 

We hope these tips will serve you and your families well on the days when the temperatures are higher than usual, or when the summer storms are more brutal than you are used to. If your Matthews, NC, home does experience a disaster this summer, do not hesitate to give us a call at (704) 840-6112. 



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Creating An Emergency Ready Kit

5/14/2021 (Permalink)

Emergencies are never planned and not being prepared can cause more complications than necessary. Having an emergency ready kit or ERK can come in handy during many disasters. Whether your home has been flooded, suffered fire damage, or storm damage, an ERK can get you through the next few days. An ERK can be kept in your home, car, or at work. 

Create your own ERK with advice from FEMA. Add these supplies to your ERK so you and your family can be prepared for any disaster that comes your way. For more supplies that should be in your ERK head here.

  • Water (One gallon per person, per day for at least two or three days)  
  • Food (Three day supply of non-perishable food) 
  • Battery or hand crank radio 
  • Flashlight
  • First aid kit 
  • Batteries 
  • Whistle
  • Dust mask 
  • Plastic sheeting and duct tape to make a shelter
  • Sanitizing wipes and garbage bags
  • Wrench, pliers, or other tools
  • Can opener
  • Maps
  • Battery powered chargers for cell phones
  • Prescription medications 
  • Cash or checks
  • Important documents (things like insurance cards and bank information)

Maintaining your emergency ready kit

  • Keep the kit in a cool dry place
  • Check the kit every year for outdated food
  • Update the kit as your family changes (think about things like formula or diapers) 

Where should you keep your kit?

  • Home: Keep the kit in a place that is easy to access when quickly leaving your home. Make sure the entire family knows where your ERK is located.
  • Work: Your work ERK should be enough to sustain you for at least 24 hours. This kit should include food, water, medicine and other basic necessities. 
  • Car: Getting stranded in your car could leave you without supplies for multiple days. Keep normal ERK supplies in your kit, along with these extras.

Download FEMA’s ERK checklist here

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Happy Cinco De Mayo

5/5/2021 (Permalink)

It’s officially the fifth of May! That means it’s party time! But do you know why we celebrate Cinco De Mayo?

What is Cinco De Mayo?

Cinco De Mayo celebrates Mexico’s victory over France at The Battle of Puebla on May fifth of 1862. Contrary to popular belief, Cinco De Mayo is not Mexican independence day. Mexico declared independence 50 years before The Battle of Puebla. 

Why Do We Celebrate?

Today, we celebrate Cinco De Mayo in the United States to celebrate Mexican heritage. Celebrations often include parades, parties, mariachi bands, and Mexican folk dancing. 

Where To Celebrate In Charlotte?

There are likely thousands of great places to celebrate Cinco De Mayo in Charlotte, NC, but we have a favorite. Stop by RuRu’s Tacos & Tequilas for our favorite Mexican dishes and drinks. Make sure to go early to avoid long lines, and don’t forget to be safe!

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National Military Appreciation Month

5/2/2021 (Permalink)

May is a month of remembrance and thanks, for those who have served our country, those who currently serve, and the families of our military members. Memorial Day isn’t the only time to stop and thank our military, there is also Armed Forces Day and Military Spouse Appreciation Day.

Join SERVPRO of South Mecklenburg County as we honor the service and sacrifice of the Arny, Navy, Air Force, Coast Gaurd, Marines, Space Force, National Guard, and their families. This is a month where we thank those who have sacrificed themselves for our freedom.

Since 1999 National Military Appreciation Month has brought the focus back to our military. This month is to remind Americans of the sacrifices that have been made for their freedom. 

The team at SERVPRO of South Mecklenburg County wants our military to know that we appreciate their hard work and sacrifices.

Three Summer Day Trips From Charlotte, NC

4/19/2021 (Permalink)

As the weather in Charlotte, NC, heats up we love the idea of taking a weekend trip and getting away from the city. Here are some of our favorite day trip ideas. 

Lake Lure

You may not have heard of Lake Lure before, but you might recognize it as the backdrop of Dirty Dancing.  

The drive east is under two hours from Charlotte, NC, making it the perfect day trip. At Lake Lure spend the day swimming and fishing or getting a boating permit for the day and spend the day out on the lake. 

Uwharrie National Forest

With over 50,000 acres, Uwharrie National Forest is a great place to explore on a warm summer day. The forest has so much to offer with Badin Lake and dozens of trails and camping sports. Only an hour and fifteen minutes from Charlotte, Uwharrie National Forest is perfect for a day hike or a weekend of camping. 

 Wilmington

Spend some time by the sea in Wilmington. The drive is on the longer side at about three hours, but the drive is worth the reward. Spend time at the Airlie Gardens or the First State National Historical Park.

Greenville

Just an hour and forty-five minutes away is Greenville. Just across the border in South Carolina, Greenville has dozens of top-tier restaurants and a beautiful river walk. Check out the suspension bridge and the Upcountry History Museum during your trip. 

We hope these three destination ideas helped with your next weekend getaway. As always, SERVPRO of South Mecklenburg County is Faster to Any Size Disaster, so be sure to call us if your home or business experiences an emergency. 

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A Recipe From Our Crew

4/14/2021 (Permalink)

"lily's old fashioned maple donuts" with a picture of donut holes and the SERVPRO logo Lily is an AMAZING Baker!

When our team isn’t working hard in Charlotte, NC, on water, fire or mold restoration, they spend time on their own hobbies. Our Social Media Manager, Lily Zay, loves to bake and she was so excited to share her recipe for Old Fashioned Maple Donut Holes. 

Donuts may seem like a daunting undertaking, but this recipe is easy, so even beginning bakers can make these delicious treats.

The Donuts

  • 3 ½ cup all-purpose flour 
  • 1 tbs baking powder
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp cinnamon 
  • 1 tsp nutmeg 
  • ½ tsp cardamom 
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • ? cup melted butter
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • Canola oil for frying 

The Glaze

  • 3 cups powdered sugar 
  • 3 tbs grade A maple syrup 
  • ½ tsp vanilla extract 
  • 3 tbs melted butter
  • 3-4 tbs milk

In a mixing bowl whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, cardamom and salt. Create a well in the center and set aside. 

In the bowl of a standing mixer beat eggs, sugar and vanilla until pale and thick. Slowly add in the melted butter and beat until combined. Add half the sour cream and beat until blended, then add the other half. Once completely blended pour the mixture into the well in the dry ingredients. 

Use a spatula to gently fold the ingredients together until just combined. Put the dough into plastic wrap and wrap tightly. Chill in the fridge for at least an hour, or overnight. 

Heat oil in a fryer or a heavy-bottomed pot to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. It is important to keep the temperature consistent throughout the entire process. 

Lightly flour a workspace and roll the dough to a  ½ inch thick. Using a small circular cutter, cut out the donut holes.

Once the oil is heated gently place 4-5 donut holes into the hot oil. Once the donuts float to the top wait 30-60 seconds for them to turn golden brown. Once they have browned, flip and allow to cook for an additional 30-60 seconds. 

Using the frying basket or a slotted spoon, remove the donuts from the oil and place them on a drying rack with paper towels underneath. 

While the donut holes are cooling begin the glaze. Melt the butter and using a whisk mix the powdered sugar, vanilla, maple syrup, and 3 tbs of milk. If the glaze is too thick add more milk as needed. 

Once the donut holes are cooled dip into the glaze and allow to dry on the cooling rack until the glaze is dry to the touch. 

Be sure to save this recipe and let us know if you try it!

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Noisy Pipes? Here's Why

3/25/2021 (Permalink)

Have you ever been trying to sleep and noisy pipes keep you up in your Charlotte, NC, home? Whatever the situation, loud pipes can be extremely disruptive. Hearing pipes move in your walls might cause some worry about expensive repairs. Often times the noise is caused by three fixable issues: 

  1. Loose Connections

The most common cause of a noise pipe near the faucet isn’t a burst pipe, but a loose or worn-out washer. This is often fixed by tightening the screw in the handle of the faucet. If the noise isn’t coming from just one sink it may be best to call in a plumber in Pineville, NC, to take a look at the issue.

  1. Faulty Ballcock 

If the sound is similar to rushing or hissing it is most often from a toilet. Often this is caused by an old ballcock in the tank of the toilet. Replacing the mechanism in the tank should correct the noise.

  1. Rapid Cutoffs

A loud hammering or banging when turning the water on or off could signify a rapid shutoff. That constant banging and movement can cause loose connections or leaks if it is not solved quickly. 

As you can see, there is often an easy solution to noisy pipes. Hearing a noise doesn’t necessarily mean costly repairs, but it does mean it is time to investigate the cause. 

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Generator Safety

2/11/2021 (Permalink)

SERVPRO Logo SERVPRO Logo

Next time a big storm hits your Charlotte NC  home it may take the power out with it. Portable generators can provide the help needed to get through a power outage, however, there are some safety tips that should be followed when using a generator. 

  1. Keep Generators Outside and Away From Other Structures: having a generator running in an enclosed or even partially enclosed area can cause carbon monoxide to build up to deadly levels. Keeping generators at least 15 feet away from any open windows to keep any carbon monoxide from entering the building. 
  2. Keep Generators Dry: Never use a generator in a rainy or wet area. Operate the generator under a structure to keep water off and always operate on a dry surface.
  3. Disconnect Incoming Power: Before turning on the generator discontent the normal source of power to the structure. 
  4. Properly Ground the Generator: To prevent any shocks or electrocution ground the generator. Follow OSHA guidelines to safely ground the generator. 
  5. Never Use Extension Cords: Using heavy-duty out-door extension cords to connect appliances, never use indoor or ungrounded extension cords. 
  6. Safely Refuel: Before refueling the generator turn it off and let it cool completely.


SERVPRO of South Mecklenburg recommends following these safety guidelines when using a generator at your Charlotte, NC, home, or business. We also recommend you follow the advice from Energy.gov.

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Add Extra Insulation to Attics and Crawl Spaces To Protect Your Property

1/25/2021 (Permalink)

Insulation being installed in crawlspace Insulation being installed in crawlspace

Did you know that SERVPRO of South Mecklenburg County will add insulation after we have mitigated your crawlspaces or attics?  Well, we do!

There are many important places to insulate your home for optimal energy efficiency when it is being built, but what about an older home that needs a little extra help?

  • If you felt the chill this winter in your Charlotte, NC, home there is a better solution than turning up the heat.
  • We recommend adding extra insulation to your home.
  • The first place you should add more insulation is always the attic.
  • Placing insulation between and over floor joists helps seal off the living spaces below.
  • Some attics can benefit from insulating the rafters as well. The U.S. Department of Energy recommends loose-fill insulation for attics.

Crawl space insulation is another important place to insulate your home.

  • This insulation process can vary if your crawlspace is ventilated or unventilated, however, we generally recommend extra insulation between the floor and the crawl space of your house. 


No matter what part of your home need more insulation or what kind of insulation you use, be sure to always follow proper safety guidelines set by the Insulation Institute

Important safety measures should always include eye protection and gloves and respirators are often required for some insulation types.

By keeping insulation fresh there is an added layer of protection to pipes and you can protect your Charlotte, Pineville or Matthews, NC, home against property damage.

While there are many other machines and equipment accessories we use at SERVPRO of South Mecklenburg County, this is a great overall look at our most commonly used pieces of equipment. This machine helps us make it “Like it never even happened,” because we are always here to help!

Still wanting to know more about the importance of insulation? Check out this video:

https://www.dailymotion.com/video/x44nwyl

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Sustainable Wrapping Paper

12/25/2020 (Permalink)

This year we were wrapping presents and it seemed so wasteful to buy so much wrapping paper only to rip it off a few days later, so we started researching sustainable alternatives. Here are 5 options to try this year.

  1. Fabric: You can do a lot with fabric, try scarves, tea towels, handkerchiefs, large napkins or whatever else you might have around the house. If you don’t have any extra fabric lying around check out your local thrift store for some good options. 
  2. Old Maps and Newspapers: Old maps that are out of date and don’t have a use anymore make great wrapping paper, and they look cool too. 
  3. Other Paper: Parchment paper is a great neutral color and tape won’t cause damage when unwrapping so it can be saved. Old brown paper bags from grocery stores are another great option. 
  4. Newspaper: If you save up old newspaper now is the time to use it. You were already going to throw them away so why not use them for wrapping. For a fun twist have the kids paint on it before wrapping.
  5. Baskets: Check out your local thrift store and chances are they have a huge selection of baskets. These are a cheap option that can be dressed up with a fun ribbon. 

Happy Hanukkah From SERVPRO of South Mecklenburg County

12/7/2020 (Permalink)

We want to wish you a very happy Hanukkah this year! Our team at SERVPRO of South Mecklenburg County understands that without usual family gatherings this year, it is important to be home for the holidays. When disaster strikes your Charlotte, NC, home we are here to help so that you can get back to celebrating as soon as possible. 

Remember, SERVPRO of South Mecklenburg County is faster to any size disaster.



4 Tips for Preventing Water Damage While You’re Away From Home

12/3/2020 (Permalink)

A storm, leaking appliance, broken pipe, overflowing tub and flooded basement are events that can cause major harm to the structure and the belongings of your Charlotte, NC, home. Many of these disasters can happen while homeowners are away on vacation or traveling for businesses. Thankfully, there are ways to prevent damage from water while you are away from home.

Check for Leaks

Before leaving your home for a longer period of time, check sinks and appliances for any leaks or cracks in pipes. If you’ve noticed low water pressure, issues with appliances or higher than usual utility bills, contact a professional to repair the issue before you leave. Checking the roof, windows and shingles are important to prevent water damage. 

Inspect Hoses and Sump Pumps

Kinked or damaged hoses are an unexpected source of water damage. Look at the lines connected to major appliances such as washing machines and dishwashers. If the hoses are damaged it is time to replace them. Make sure to check any appliances you may have recently moved as the hoses may have kinked or disconnected.

If your home has a sump pump, check that it is working properly. Run the pump for a while and listen for any strange sounds and make sure that the water is being pumped away from your home. It is a good idea to invest in a battery backup in case power is lost. 

Insulate Pipes During Cold Weather 

Exposed pipes are most susceptible to freezing during cold winter months. Protect your pipes from freezing by insulating them with sleeves made from rubber or fiberglass. These are easy to find at your local home improvement store. Failure to insulate your pipes may result in pipe repair or even extensive water damage to your home.

Ask a Neighbor for Help

After a visual inspection of your home, you should enlist the help of a neighbor or a trusted friend. It is best to have someone watch your home while you are away. Make sure they know where the water main is and how to turn it off. Make sure the heat is turning on in the winter months to prevent freezing, and the air conditioning comes on in the summer to prevent mold growth. 

Follow these tips to decrease your chances of water damage. If you do experience significant damage, after getting any necessary repairs, call SERVPRO of South Mecklenburg County to help with the cleanup.

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Safest Way to Thaw a Turkey

11/23/2020 (Permalink)

Thanksgiving is a stressful time of year, and when you add a pandemic and things can get a little hectic, so if you are a planner or not, learn how you can thaw your turkey. 

Not all turkeys are frozen, but if yours is, it can be daunting to know what to do. Follow along to see what method is best for you this holiday. 

Fridge Thawing:

If you are a planner this is our favorite option. Clear out a shelf in the bottom of your fridge and put a roasting pan underneath your turkey. This is a slow method and takes 24 hours for every 5 pounds of turkey. As your turkey thaws keep it wrapped and check the pan to see if it needs to be drained. After your turkey is thawed thoroughly dry it before seasoning and cooking. 

Sink-Thawing:

Running a little late on thawing your bird? No problem, sink-thawing is a great and much faster option. Clean your kitchen sink and fill your biggest pot with enough water to cover your turkey. You may need to weigh your turkey down with a lid or plate. Every 30 minutes drain all of the water and refill the pot with more cold water. This method takes about 2-3 hours for every 5 pounds, so even that big 20-pound bird can be thawed in 8-12 hours. 

Last-Minute Options:

If you forgot to get your turkey out of the freezer until Thanksgiving Day all hope is not lost. If your bird is still frozen on Thanksgiving morning go ahead and accept this won't be your best turkey ever, but it will be cooked and safe for your meal. Make sure you never try to fry a frozen bird and instead roast in your oven at a lower temperature for about 50% longer than you normally would. If you choose this option make sure that all parts of your turkey reach 165 degrees.


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10 Steps to Feeling Better

9/17/2020 (Permalink)

The team at SERVPRO of South Mecklenburg County understands that this year has had many ups and downs, and we want to offer our support. We want to share our tips for feeling better and we want to challenge you to try one every day. 

Our team knows that it isn’t always easy to make commitments to spending hours every day working out or being outside, but we want to share with you how little things can be important to the big picture. 

Try one of these ten things every day to live a happier life and feel better. To learn more about the benefits of each one of these activities, check back for more blog posts. 

  1. Get out in nature
  2. Exercise 
  3. Spend time with friends and family 
  4. Express gratitude 
  5. Meditate
  6. Get enough sleep
  7. Challenge yourself 
  8. Laugh
  9. Touch someone
  10. Be optimistic 

Safety Tips For Kids (and those young at heart too!)

5/27/2020 (Permalink)

Long before Jim and I joined the SERVPRO team and began serving the South Mecklenburg County community through our SERVPRO of South Mecklenburg County business, I was an educator.  From time to time, I sneak away and post resources that help our young friends in the community be safe.  

Today, I came across some great resources that are not only fun and entertaining- but also teach great safety tips concerning fire safety!  

SERVPRO of South Mecklenburg County comes in AFTER the fire to help you get things cleaned up and back to normal as soon as possible, but does your child know what to do if there is a fire in your home?  

I was always careful not to frighten my kiddos, but they need to know what to do. The site I found today, I really liked!  It was http://www.sparky.org/games from the NFPA (National Fire Protection Association).  It has great activities, games, apps, and tips for you to share/do with your children.  (I still love to color and play games myself- so I guess I am still young at heart!)

Please let me know if you have other resources and I will be happy to share with our friends in the community!

Enjoy!

Where is Autumn?

10/4/2019 (Permalink)

It continues to be hot and dry in the Carolinas.  We are hoping for relief soon, but until then, there are some things we can all do!

Inside:

Conserve water- turn off the taps and address those leaks!

When running water (getting it hot at the tap), collect the water and use it on plants.

Showers: Take shorter showers

Toilets: Install low-flow toilets and flush when necessary

Laundry: Wash full loads only

Outside:

Lawns:  Water less often and if you must, please do it in the early morning or late evening.

Sprinklers: Set timers, address leaks, and focus on the areas that need water (not the sidewalk).

Landscaping: Mulch around trees and plants- the Carolinas love their pine needles for a reason!

Cars: On a positive note, it is a perfect opportunity to skip a chore- avoid washing the car unless it is absolutely necessary or use a car wash that recycles the water.

Cancer Charity Event in the SMC area!

5/2/2019 (Permalink)

SERVPRO of South Mecklenburg supports Hope Cancer Ministries Event

SERVPRO of South Mecklenburg County attended- and even helped out a bit- at a wonderful event on Saturday night.  The Hope Cancer Ministries- Bid For Hope event was a charity auction to raise money and awareness for a critical need in our community.  Hope Cancer Ministries (HCM) offers spiritual, emotional, travel/housing, and financial support to cancer patients, caregivers and those who are grieving.  We were proud to be invited to attend and participate at this event.  It is so important to help our neighbors, who are already facing the challenges of cancer, hopefully have a few less worries during the process. 

We are not just here to help our wonderful community recover from personal disasters like storms, floods, and fire- we believe we are here to serve in any capacity needed.  We truly are committed to helping this community make disasters and crises "Like it never even happened"!  We are just getting started!

Thank you, HCM, for including SERVPRO of South Mecklenburg County!