Recent Posts

The Hillsborough Fire Dept. Calls on SERVPRO

6/27/2020 (Permalink)

Water extraction happening in the fire department. Production Technician Emmanuel extracts water from the carpet in the members’ room of the Hillsborough Fire Department.

When the Hillsborough (Flagtown) Fire Department had a wet firehouse due to a faulty water heater they called on SERVPRO® to come to dry them out.

The Fire Department discovered that their water heater had failed on a Friday morning, damaging their kitchen and other areas. SERVPRO of West Somerset County was on site within an hour of the call and began right away to remove as much water as possible. Unfortunately, not all the wet structure could be saved, so our crew worked over the weekend to remove the damaged materials. We put our drying equipment in place to remove moisture from what could be saved. On Tuesday the firehouse was clean and dry and ready to be rebuilt.

What Causes Damage to Hardwood Floors

6/8/2020 (Permalink)

Water damage on hardwood floors can be caused by various factors, including the following:

  • Roof leaks
  • Plumbing leaks
  • High humidity levels
  • Unattended spills
  • Tracking rain/snow
  • Tracking pool water

Any water sources can cause damages to your hardwood flooring. If there has been any spills or leaks, be sure to immediately wipe them off. Do not let them sit and be absorbed by your hardwood flooring through open pores. This will then cause discoloration, warping, or buckling.

Prevention of Water Damage to Hardwood Floors

There are plenty of ways to protect your hardwood flooring depending on the source of water that it is exposed to. The most critical prevention method is still to wipe off any leaks and spills immediately to get rid of any pooling before absorption occurs.

Spills and Leaks

It takes just a small splash of water from sources like a kitchen sink or a pair of wet shoes from outdoors to allow hardwood floors to start absorbing This can be avoided by placing an absorbent mat or cloth were necessary to catch these little spills instead.

When you need to organize a party, always prepare sufficient paper towels to allow guests to immediately clean up spills. Alternatively, you can layer the hardwood floors with a rug that can absorb spills and prevent them from touching the hardwood flooring.

Spills are inevitable when you have children around the house. Ensure they only eat and drink away from the hardwood flooring but if they must, just place a rug underneath their seating area.

Leaks and Humidity

Once you have cleaned up any leaks, there is still bound to be moisture residue left behind. An industrial dehumidifier can help to remove excess moisture before the hardwood flooring can absorb any of it.

For the roof, always consult a specialist to prevent leaks spilling onto the hardwood floors. Early repairs can stop the roof leaks even before they can begin to spill.

Plumbing issues can be detected on walls as well as the floors. Any signs of damages need to be rectified immediately before spills occur and flow onto the hardwood floors.

For households that have been experiencing high humidity levels, implementing long-term solutions is the best bet instead of allowing severe damages to be inflicted onto the hardwood flooring.

Repairing Water Damage on Hardwood Floor

Water stains are typically white pigments on the hardwood floors. They can be removed by simply using a floor polish with a cotton cloth.

Blackwater stains are not that easy to remove which require sanding them off with sandpaper. A type of wood bleach will then be needed to lighten the shade of the stains. Slight discoloration may occur which has been deemed as unsightly for some or be regarded as nicer than the color of the blackwater stains.

Warping of Hardwood Boards

This situation can still be salvaged by first flattening the warped boards with something heavy. Leave it for several days to see if any changes can be seen. Boards that are not in line can be nailed down but popping of boards needs to be observed.

For everything else, simply seek the professional services of a water damage restoration company. It is highly advisable to spend on restorative procedures than to incur even heftier expenses, should your own repair attempts were to fail.

Can You Prevent Mold Growth?

6/8/2020 (Permalink)

Almost 50% of households within the United States experience mold growth of various severity scales. Several types of molds are considered life-threatening as they pose critical risks to human health and that of pets as well. Homeowners need to be aware of the mold situation within their household to minimize their exposure to this harmful growth. Apart from our health, molds may also jeopardize the value of our homes as they cause property damages.

Indoor Humidity

Molds are not able to thrive without moisture. Thus, we need to be sensitive to our surroundings and be vigilant in getting rid of water sources that are not in use. There are other areas of concern apart from water leakage and spills alone. They may be hidden away from sight and the usage of a hygrometer can help detect any humidity levels to monitor any moisture around the house.

Good Ventilation

Always ensure that every room in your house has enough ventilation. This will help to reduce the humidity levels in each region to help stop mold from surviving. Since air holds a certain percentage of water vapor, condensation can occur when the temperature of a room fluctuates. Good ventilation can help control this situation to prevent mold growth.

Exhaust Fans

Exhaust fans are often left unnoticed around the house since they are just a small device located at mainly the kitchen and bathroom. However, their purpose is really important to vent moisture away. This can prevent water vapor from sticking onto walls and promote mold growth when humidity levels increase.

Outdoor Drainage

Pay close attention to paths that contain water flows such as the drains or pools. If your house is not situated on top of a hill, most likely the water will remain stagnant. This can contribute towards the development of mold and becomes the foundation of serious mold buildup. This is also true for rain gutters that can collect rain but may not release it.

Wet Spillage

The simplest but most efficient way to prevent mold is to keep your home dry. Mop up any spills immediately regardless of where it may have taken place. Wet items should also be cleared and not left bundled up on the floor. Houses with carpets need to perform this simple action even more as carpets absorb water easily.

Mold Prevention: How it is Easier to Avoid than to Rectify

The abovementioned steps can most definitely help prevent mold buildup but not entirely. There will still be certain areas that are simply inevitable in promoting the growth of mold. Certain parts of your home which are out of sight or reach may still experience mold but probably not enough to cause an entire infestation to occur. As a homeowner, always be wary of your surroundings and tackle any situation that can support mold growth before it is able to even develop.

Natural Disaster Recovery Tips For Business Owners

6/8/2020 (Permalink)

The aftermath of natural disasters causes different degrees of impact on a business. Businesses may possibly suffer a great loss as the damage can be huge. The situation will also hit employees who are going to see the adverse effects inflicting upon their livelihood. Matters are then made worst when approximately 40% of startups will not reopen even after the natural disaster situation has settled down. You can prevent your business from making part of that figure. Make the necessary preparations to mend from a tragedy and increase your chances of successful natural disaster recovery for commercial businesses.

Before Disaster Hits

Business owners need to always be prepared way ahead of time. Do not have the mentality that their business is never going to be hit by a disaster. Take every necessary step to put risks at a bare minimum including those of hurricane, earthquake, flood, fire, and any other types of natural disasters.

Start by first getting a comprehensive insurance policy that covers a wide-ranging list of damages. Always check to ensure that the policy does include damages caused by natural disasters as not every insurance has such coverage.

After Disaster Hit

Keep a list of to-do things handy to know exactly how to react and what needs to be done immediately when a natural disaster strikes.

Activate Your Emergency Plan

An emergency plan needs to have the objective of minimizing the damages caused by the natural disaster towards your business as well as your employees. Call everyone and ask about their well-being and whereabouts.

Communication Strategy

A trusted employee needs to be the one handling all the communication with relief services, financial bodies, and suppliers. The same employee also needs to have a backup mode of communication should the first system were to break down.

Keeping Data Safe

Natural disasters cause disruption to your business system. For example, they may corrupt your files including every single financial data. Always ensure to back up every business file in more than just a single location, both online and offline.

Restoration Expert

Seek restorative services as soon as the situation has calmed. The earlier the restoration processes are put in place, the higher the chances for you to control the overall damages. This can help minimize your losses as much as possible. A professional restoration company will also assist you in getting the most value out of your insurance policy. They usually have prior experience to advise you accordingly.

Insurance Claim

Check your insurance coverage to examine any hidden clauses such as additional damages, deductibles, and more. Get all the facts right before filing for a claim after adding up the total losses faced by your business.

Disaster Loan

There are several government bodies and agencies that offer disaster assistance in various forms. There are the Disaster Loan Program, low-interest loan, and others which can cater to varying needs of business owners after a disaster. Simply contact any business development centers to list down your concerns and the type of assistance your business may require.

Critical Preparation

No crisis is too hard to recover from even if it involves getting hit by a natural disaster. You and your business will get back on track with proper preparation that gets put in place early. Always know your resources well to aid you in the entire recovery process.

Have You Been Hit With Water Damage?

5/11/2020 (Permalink)

The cost to repair your home from water damage is extremely high. In fact, it is one of the costliest disasters your home can ever experience. It is important that you take appropriate measures to protect your home from water damage to prevent yourself from incurring such costs. This is especially so if you are living in a flood-prone zone as water damage can be very common. Learning how to prevent water damage at home would be beneficial, and this will definitely be much cheaper than having to pay for water damage repairs. Before we discuss how you can best protect your home from water damage, we need to first know what causes water damage and how to detect it.

What Causes Water Damage?

There are many things that can cause water damage. The most common causes are usually due to extreme weather conditions such as heavy rains and floods. Burst or leaking pipes, malfunctioning electrical appliances such as the washing machine, damaged roof or groundwater seepage are also common causes of water damage. If you have experienced any of those recently, it would be a good time for you to check for the signs of water damage.

Signs of Water Damage

If you notice that the paint in your home is peeling or warping floors, it is likely due to water damage in your home. Ceilings and walls that show signs of discoloration are also an indication of water damage. If you smell a strong and musty smell, this may be a sign that there is mold in your house. Lastly, if you discover water pooling up in your yard, especially after rain, it is most probably due to water damage as well.

How to Protect Your Home from Water Damage

So, the best way to prevent water damage is to properly maintain your home. You can do so by ensuring that there is good drainage by cleaning your gutters regularly. It is advised that you clean your gutters at least twice per year. Inspect your roof periodically, especially after a large storm. This is to check for any broken or missing shingles or cracked flashing. Remember to seal your windows to prevent rain and snow from leaking into your house. Check your plumbing system annually and lastly, remember to check if your basement has sealed walls and floor and is equipped with a sump pump and a backwater valve.

Proper maintenance of your home can help reduce the risk of water damage. However, even this cannot always prevent water damage from happening. If water damage does happen to your home, do not try to solve the problem yourself as it can be unsafe and hard to deal with. Your safest bet is to contact water damage experts and let them deal with any forms of repair to set your mind at ease.

Understanding Water and Storm Damage

4/21/2020 (Permalink)

Water damage and storm damage are a crisis feared by every property owner, whether it is a home or business space. It can cause severe damage to your furniture and appliances. Water damage restoration is important when your commercial property or home is suffering from water damage due to flooding or leaking. Although every water damage situation is unique and requires different solutions, there are general guidelines and processes to follow for all situations. Read on to find out more about the water damage restoration process. 

Step 1: Emergency Contact

The first step of water damage restoration typically involves calling a professional company. The staff member in charge will walk you through the crisis and lead you through some questions to get a better understanding of your situation and needs.

Step 2: Inspection and Damage Assessment

The second stage is to perform an inspection to identify the severity of the water damage. Tests will also be carried out to assess how much moisture has seeped in so as to ensure an efficient and effective restoration.

Step 3: Extraction and Removal of Excess Water

As soon as the initial inspections and assessments are completed, the water removal process will commence getting rid of standing water. Strong pumps and vacuums are utilized to remove a large amount of water from your home at a faster rate. This helps to ensure that there is no secondary water damage and growth of mold.

Step 4: Drying and Dehumidification

Most of the water would have been removed in step three. However, for remaining water located at places that are hard to access, specialized machinery will be used. Professionals will also make use of a variety of measures to estimate the ideal number of dehumidifiers and air movers required to completely dry your corporate office or home. Some of the measures include calculating the temperature, relative humidity, and taking room measurements.

Step 5: Cleaning and Sanitizing

At this stage, the items and furniture damaged by the water that can be restored will be cleaned. There are various techniques professionals use to clean their clients’ belongings, and they are trained and experienced in getting rid of odors in your property by using sanitizing treatments.

Step 6: Restoration

The last stage is where the restoration of your property is carried out. Restoration refers to the process of bringing back the original condition of your property prior to the water damage. The restoration process may involve small repair work, such as installing a new carpet and getting new drywall or may require extensive improvements such as reconstructing damaged areas and rooms in a business or home.

If you are in need of professional help for any water damage, SERVPRO of West Somerset County can help. Our experts can guide you through this crisis, and determine the extent of the water damage so as ensure the most ideal restoration process for your property.

What is Fire Damage Restoration?

4/21/2020 (Permalink)

Fire damage restoration is the process of determining the extent of damage in an accident, securing undamaged items, and remediating the affected property. When there’s a fire, there’s damage. After a fire is put out and firefighters had done their duty to keep you and the environment safe, your house or office is most likely to face water, smoke, and fire damage. In most cases, you will need help to repair the damages. Every fire is different, hence there is no one solution for all types of fire damage. However, the steps one may take to implement fire damage restoration to their house/office stays the same.

Step 1: Call A Fire and Water Cleanup and Restoration Company

The process of restoring your home/office starts when you call a professional cleanup and restoration company. The representative of the company will ask essential questions to find out more about the damage situation and then respond with the most suitable solution, with the appropriate resources and equipment.

Step 2: Inspection and Assessment

Fire damage restoration experts from the company will then visit the site of the fire damage, where they conduct extensive inspections and test neighboring rooms of your house/office to determine the extent of the damage before developing and deciding on the next step as well as the action plan.

Step 3: Repairing Windows, Walls, and Roofs

The third step is to repair the broken or missing windows, walls and roofs, which are the most common affected areas after a fire. The experts will conduct board-up services on the windows and walls, and roof-tarp services on damaged roofs. Missing windows, walls and a leaking roof, can disrupt the structure and compromise the safety of your house/office. Hence, this step is carried out immediately.

Step 4: Water Removal

If water damage is present in your house/office, this step is also conducted immediately to remove most of the water. Afterward, air movers and dehumidifiers are utilized to remove the remaining traces of water and dry them.

Step 5: Smoke and Soot Removal

After removing water, it is time to remove the smoke and soot from all surfaces in your house/office. Specialized equipment and tools are used to remove them from walls, ceilings, corners, and roofs.

Step 6: Cleaning and Sanitizing

After all the water, smoke and soot are removed, the next step is to sanitize and disinfect your house/office thoroughly. The experts will use special cleaning equipment and techniques to clean all structures and furniture that were damaged by the fire. Don’t worry about the smell; fire damage restoration specialists are trained to remove burning smells or odors with air scrubbers and through fogging.

Step 7: Restoration

This is the final step to reverting your home/office back to its original condition. Depending on the extent of the fire damage, this either means minor repairs to your home, such as installing new carpets and replacing drywall, or major repairs such as reconstructing bedrooms or kitchens.

If you are looking for a stellar services provider who can restore your house smoothly and properly, SERVPRO of West Somerset County is a good choice as your trusted fire damage restoration company. With technicians certified in every niche of this industry, there is no damage too complex or hard for us to handle. We promise to offer a comprehensive solution to every home or office at affordable prices.  Call (732) 410-7309 to schedule an appointment with us today.

COVID 19: SERVPRO of West Somerset County Remains Operational

4/9/2020 (Permalink)

COVID-19: SERVPRO of West Somerset County Remains Operational

COVID-19, or Coronavirus Disease 2019, is an infectious disease and has reach pandemic status. This respiratory disease can cause patients to experience an array of flu-like symptoms such as fever, cough, breathing difficulties, and more. Although the Coronavirus Disease mainly spreads through contact with an infected person, e.g., when they sneeze or cough, it can also spread when a person touches a contaminated object or surface and proceeds to touch their mouths, noses, or eyes.

Cleaning has Taken a New Level of Urgency

Spring cleaning has taken on a new urgency in 2020. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in the United States and other health regulatory bodies have advised all citizens to take preventative measures. As a result, individuals are intensely washing and disinfecting homes and offices, knowing that lives may depend on these actions. With more homeowners and business owners taking extra precautions, professional cleaning services providers have been receiving active requests for deep cleaning to eliminate virus-carrying particulate.

Understanding the COVID-19 Virus' Lifespan on External Surfaces

Scientists from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and CDC are conducting ongoing studies about the COVID-19 virus. So far, the 2019 novel coronavirus can live between two and three days on stainless steel and plastic surfaces. Because of the virus' survivability, individuals must keep their homes thoroughly clean during this time. If a family member or loved one is unwell, it is vital to disinfect high-touch surfaces in the household daily. These surfaces include light switches, keyboards, countertops, tables, handles, and doorknobs. In addition to cleaning, these surfaces must be disinfected with an alcohol-based solution that contains at least 70 percent alcohol.

How SERVPRO of West Somerset County Can Help

SERVPRO of West Somerset County is a professional cleaning services provider who adheres to the highest cleaning and sanitation standards. In addition to providing standard cleaning and disinfection services, our cleaning specialists are also trained to safely and effectively remove biohazard contaminants from both residential and commercial properties.

You can enjoy complete peace of mind knowing that our company is well-equipped to handle all of our clients' cleaning needs during the COVID-19 crisis. We have updated our cleanup protocol to provide proactive cleaning and disinfection solutions for a wide variety of facilities and structures. These include areas where there are no known threats of COVID-19 exposure or contamination. SERVPRO of West Somerset County will inspect, clean, and disinfect following the latest safety and prevention guidelines.

At SERVPRO of West Somerset County, our team can clean the above-mentioned high touch surfaces. Below is a non-exhaustive list for your reference:

  • Fitness Equipment
  • Playground Equipment
  • Elevator Cars
  • Stair Handrails
  • Rugs and Carpets
  • Sales Counters
  • Shelving and Racks
  • Water Fountains
  • Retail Spaces
  • Offices
  • Schools and Classrooms
  • Bathrooms
  • Kitchen and Food Preparation Areas
  • … and more!

From cleaning and disinfecting porous and non-porous surfaces to facilitating the safe disposal of waste, SERVPRO of West Somerset County has all your cleaning needs covered during the COVID-19 crisis. Feel free to call us at 1-800-SERVPRO or visit our Coronavirus Resource Page for more information.

Let's Weather the Storm Together

4/9/2020 (Permalink)

No one can control the wrath of Mother Nature and when she passes through it’s not always for the best. Storms, in particular, are very unpredictable. You never know just how much it will affect you. A storm could simply pass through and leave no damage but it can also tear through your home or property severely. Here at SERVPRO of West Somerset County, we know your home or property has a significant meaning to you. We’re here to assure you that if anything happens to your property we are ready and willing to fix it. Whether it is excavating water or rebuilding your property new, we have you covered. Being an emergency service allows us to help you no matter what time of day. We’ll take care of what you love.

Commercial Ceiling Repair

3/12/2020 (Permalink)

This particular job was for one of our clients who experienced troubles after a pipe burst in their parking garage. Not pictured here is the damage that took place on the ceiling of the garage. The ceiling had air pockets that were swelling up with water inside them. This type of damage can lead to a number of other issues including mold. Our client was lucky they called us when they did or this could have gotten much worse.  Our crew went in with SERVPRO tools and the damage was fixed hastily. The picture on the right is the ceiling once it’s been patched up and restored to its original condition. Our client was very happy with the results and noted that it was done way sooner than anticipated.