Recent Posts

Can You Save Your Wet Carpet?

6/2/2020 (Permalink)

Wet carpet Water damaged carpeting in a Montclair, NJ home

If you have suffered flooding in your Montclair NJ home from a pipe break or another type of water damage, you may wonder if you should save or replace the wet flooring. It depends on a few conditions.

How Long Has the Flooring Been Wet?

If you discovered the flooding immediately after the water event, and the damage has been contained in a small area, you may be able to save the carpet. You must dry it completely within a few hours, however. Wet flooring that sits for a couple of days will begin to grow mold. If you suspect mold, call a water damage repair service right away.

What Type of Flood Water Damaged the Flooring?
Restoration can occur if the small water-damaged area is from a clean water source, such as a pipe break or leaky faucet. Water-damaged carpeting from any other water source should be removed and replaced by a professional as soon as possible.

Will the Padding Need to be Replaced?
If there is padding under the flooring, you will need to replace it. Padding soaks up water and is very difficult to dry. You may be able to salvage carpeting above the padding in some instances. It is important to stress that if you have never replaced flooring before, you should have a professional handle the job since it is easy to damage the carpeting. An experienced carpet layer will follow these steps:

  • Carefully lift up the carpeting. If it is just damp along the bottom, roll it up and move it to a dry area. Unroll it face down and completely dry out the bottom surface.
  • Make sure the subfloor is fully dry before you install new padding.
  • After the carpeting is dry, lay it back down and secure it.

While it may be tempting to try to salvage your wet flooring after a pipe break, it is smart to have a professional assess the situation.

Tips to Keeping Your Smoke Alarm Functioning Properly

6/2/2020 (Permalink)

Smoke alarm Among the most important features in your home, your smoke alarm is high on the list

Factors To Know About Smoke Alarms

Among the most important features in your home, your smoke alarm is high on the list. This device can be a lifesaver in the event of a fire. You should never disarm your alarms. Also, if your home doesn't currently have working alarms, make sure you install some immediately. Regular maintenance and care of these warning systems are critical. Failure to do this can lead to disaster or even death. There are a few important factors to know about smoke alarms.

Where To Put Them

Proper placement of each fire alarm will help protect you and your loved ones from harm. When you have alarms in the right places, you can be alerted to danger regardless of where a fire may have started in your Upper Montclair, NJ, house. Your alarms should be in the following places:

  • On each level of your home
  • In every bedroom of the home
  • In the hallway outside each bedroom and common area of the house (living room, kitchen, laundry room)

Changing the Batteries

Though digital alarms are available, many homeowners detect fire damage with battery-powered smoke alarms. It's easy to forget about changing the batteries, but if you can get on a regular schedule, you can make sure the alarms are working well. Change the batteries at least once a year. You may also know it's time if your alarms are chirping. Some also have an indicator light showing that the batteries are dead.

Replacing the Alarms

You may not be able to avoid smoke damage if a fire starts in your home. However, the alarms detect smoke, you can have time to safely exit your home and alert the fire department. Older, worn-out alarms may not work efficiently, so it's best to replace the alarms every 10 years.
Though you can salvage much of your home with the help of a professional fire cleanup company, you'd rather have a reliable fire alarm alert you in time to prevent catastrophic damage.

Commercial Water Damage: How To Protect Your Business

5/18/2020 (Permalink)

Air movers placed in a commercial facility Commercial water damage in Llewellyn Park, NJ

According to recent research publications, the last 36 years have brought a significant increase in severe weather and flooding. If you have not addressed severe weather preparation at your place of business, your risk of property damage may be significant. A few simple precautionary measures could protect your business from costly water damage.

Be Prepared

If rising floodwaters were to threaten your Llewellyn Park, NJ, business, you would undoubtedly feel grateful that you'd put some time into preparation. Consider taking the following precautions as part of an emergency readiness plan:

  • Preparing an emergency kit that includes first aid, water, snacks, flashlights, batteries, and a battery-operated radio
  • Registering with your local emergency notification services
  • Identifying and posting evacuation routes from your building
  • Posting contact information for your local water restoration specialist
  • Keeping storm drains and gutters clear of debris

Floodwater can appear suddenly and rise swiftly. Being prepared is your best defense against serious commercial water damage.

Engage Your Staff
Water remediation experts recommend business owners provide emergency readiness training for their staff. Learning how to create a coordinated response may help prepare your team to employ safe practices during a flood or other emergency. Even smaller issues, such as broken pipes or overflowing drains, can create an urgent need for an informed response. You can check with local first responders or water remediation specialists to set up safety training for your staff.

Assess Your Risk
It’s important to understand the level of risk your location bears for water damage. You can start with consulting adjacent property owners, weather agencies, and city planning officials to discern the past frequency of flooding in your area. Your insurance agent can discuss your risk level and make recommendations for the appropriate insurance products.
Simple planning is the best strategy for protecting your organization from an extreme water event. Adequate staff readiness is your foremost defense against serious damage. Preparation can mean the difference between some minor landscape damage and a costly, time-consuming process of water cleanup and restoration.

The Unusual Properties of Mold

5/18/2020 (Permalink)

Black mold on drywall Severe mold damage in Verona, NJ

Mold is an unusual organism, and certainly not something you want lurking around your place of business in Verona, NJ. It is neither plant nor animal, though it comes closer to being in the animal kingdom. The fungus is capable of forming a mycotoxin, which essentially means that it can potentially produce a toxic substance. In most cases, the fungus has to be ingested to be dangerous, and this applies only to a small amount of molds at certain moments in their life cycle. In some cases, though, the mycotoxins can be released into the air, and exposure can result from inhalation and skin contact. The identification of a dangerous strain of mold cannot be determined by looking at it.

The Smell of Mold

Mold often produces a musty odor. This is one way to detect its presence in your building without being able to see it. The fungus produces compounds that are volatile and that spread into the air. These airborne compounds can be passed around the building through ventilation, fans, and heating systems. The compounds may or may not be in the form of a mycotoxin, and the health effects of inhalation are largely unknown. Mold can be located in a building by the following methods:

Professional Testing
The appearance of dark-colored patches or blotches
The musty odor

Professional testing by a certified mold remediation technician is the most reliable method. Other methods of testing could produce unclear results.

The Process of Mold Remediation
The proven process of removing mold colonies in a commercial building involves a number of critical steps. This includes using equipment to capture and remove mold spores whether they are dead or alive. Any effects of a mycotoxin will be removed once the mold level is significantly reduced. With the removal of the fungus, the musty odor should be gone, too, as well as any impacts on indoor air quality.

How To Flood Proof Your House

5/2/2020 (Permalink)

Breaker box with the word CUT THE POWER! Turn off the electricity!

Steps to Reduce The Chances Of a Flood Affecting Your Home

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration have found that floods are one of the most common weather disasters in America. They can be quite costly, as well. In fact, floods caused more than $260 billion in damages between 1980 and 2013. Flood insurance claims between 2006 and 2015 averaged $1.9 billion each year. Storms have gotten even more destructive since then. That is why it is important to flood proof your Glen Ridge, home.
Elevation is a key component of flood safety. The higher your house, the less likely the water will reach it. While moving your property to the top of a mountain is not realistic, there are some steps you can take to reduce the chances of a flood affecting your home.

1. Consider Retrofitting
Homes that frequently flood may need to be dry-proofed or wet-proofed. Dry-proofing means applying water-blocking sealants to the walls. Wet-proofing, meanwhile, consists of vent installation throughout your home.
2. Change Your Water Valves
If the sewage system floods during a storm, bacteria-filled water could end up in your home. Backflow valves can prevent this sewer backup from occurring. For flood safety, you should use gate valves, which are stronger than check or flap valves.
3. Protect Climate and Electrical Systems
Indoor equipment such as water heaters and furnaces should be above the flood level of your home. Any electrical sockets, wires, circuit breakers, and switches should be at least a foot clear of the expected floodwater height.
4. Enact Last-Minute Strategies
Even as the floodwaters are approaching your home, you can still enact some eleventh-hour measures. If possible, turn off the electricity and elevate your appliances. You should also move your belongings to the upper floors and clear any drains or gutters.
The above safety tips can protect your home prior to a major weather event. Yet even the best flood safety measures may not be enough during a severe rainstorm or hurricane. Thankfully, water damage repair specialists are available to help if a flood does affect your home.

5 Ways to Avert a Fire Disaster

4/22/2020 (Permalink)

People escape to fire exit door Regularly practice evacuation

Five Ways To Avert a Major Disaster

Business and commercial property owners can take fire preparation measures to reduce the likelihood of a total loss at a building in West Orange, NJ. Here are five ways in which it may be possible to avert a major disaster.

1. Have a Plan In Place
Planning ahead for what to do in the event of a fire is the most essential disaster preparation measure. A complete fire plan might include protocols for contacting emergency help, performing critical functions, attempting suppression, safe evacuation, and burn first aid.

2. Train Employees or Occupants
Employees or occupants cannot be expected to execute an emergency plan without previous fire preparation. Business and building owners should schedule training sessions that cover fire safety practices such as proper handling and storage of combustible or flammable materials during daily operations and what to do if a fire breaks out.

3. Regularly Practice Evacuation
Fire drills can help the occupants of a structure know the best routes to take in the event of a fire. It can also be helpful to post maps throughout a structure that indicates the fastest ways out of a building.

4. Maintain Fire Suppression Equipment
Fire extinguishers and sprinkler systems may limit the extent of fire damage. While sprinklers may cause some water damage, only the sprinklers that detect dangerously elevated temperatures should activate.

5. Back-Up Records Off-Site
A fire can cause a significant amount of damage without reaching the level of a total disaster. Recovery may be easier if essential records are digitized and stored remotely or paper records are archived in another location.
These fire preparation measures may reduce risks and the severity of a blaze at a commercial building in West Orange, NJ. Planning, training, and proper equipment go a long way toward limiting damage. It is also important to meet fire code requirements and equip a structure with suppression equipment.

Maintain Your Commercial Roof To Avoid Expensive Repairs

4/13/2020 (Permalink)

Construction engineer wear safety uniform inspection metal roofing work for roof industrial Roof inspection in Upper Montclair, NJ

The roof is one of the most important parts of a building when it comes to preventing storm and wind damage. Proper maintenance goes a long way toward ensuring that unexpected storms and disasters don't put the rest of your property at risk. Even a small roof leak can lead to very expensive damages.

Focus on Prevention

Commercial properties may have hundreds or thousands of feet of roofing. There are several steps you can take to prevent leaks and the resulting needs for repairs:

  • Schedule regular inspections at least twice a year
  • Complete repairs as soon as they become apparent
  • Clean out gutters and storm drains
  • Secure gaps between roofing and vents
  • Fill gaps around flashings, joints, and roof edges

You may conduct inspections and repairs on your own most of the time, but you should have professionals perform these services at least once a year, and maybe more often, to ensure that you aren't missing problems that are hard to catch.

Schedule Professional Repairs

If a roof leak has gone unnoticed for some time, there may be an extensive amount of hidden damages. When this happens, it's often helpful to hire an outside building damage repair and reconstruction professional. These experts can resolve the initial problem while repairing any structural damage that resulted. They can also watch out for secondary damages, such as mold growth.

Protect Your Roof

Rain and wind damage aren't always obvious, so it's vital that you're consistent about performing inspections and routine maintenance. Thorough maintenance efforts are one of the best ways to prevent roof damage. It's a good item to have professional inspections done at least once a year to look for problems you may have missed. When leaks and other problems do arise, contact repair professionals right away, so small damages don't become more expensive.
Has your commercial property been exposed to a roof leak? If you don't know, begin with professional inspections and the creation of a roof maintenance plan. Reach out to Upper Montclair, NJ, resources before your roof and property become exposed.

Proper Treatment After Flooding Can Prevent Secondary Damage Such as Black Mold

3/27/2020 (Permalink)

Flooded basement Calling a water damage repair and restoration company in Montclair, NJ to see to the proper extraction of the water after a flood is critical.

Proper Treatment After Flooding

When the tragedy of a flood happens in your home in Montclair, NJ you do your best to clean it up and restore a sense of security and normalcy for your family. The initial flooding can be followed by secondary damage, such as black mold. This is the reason that further steps may be needed to ensure that your home is fully restored to livable condition.

Causes of Secondary Damage Following In-Home Flooding

  • Residual moisture content due to incomplete water removal
  • Inadequate disinfection methods
  • High humidity, especially when combined with warmth

Moisture Removal

If water is not removed immediately or completely after a flood in your home, you can experience some structural damage such as warping or swelling of floorboards or studs. Allowing these to become saturated, but not replacing or drying them out completely may result in soft spots or weakening.

Cleaning and Disinfecting

All flooded areas should be inspected for residual bacteria or other contamination. It may be necessary to use chemical cleaners and/or ozone generator to destroy all bacteria and microbial growth from carpets and soft surfaces in order to prevent things such as black mold.


Controlling the humidity in the affected area is also a key factor in preventing secondary damage. If carpets, floorboards, sheetrock or other materials are continually subjected to high humidity, it is an irresistible invitation to black mold to join the party. A dehumidifier can help a great deal in keeping mold spores and growth in check.

Calling a water damage repair and restoration company in Montclair, NJ to see to the proper extraction of the water after a flood is critical. They can check more than just skin deep to remove water in hidden places. They will also use proven methods to disinfect and clean everything, ensuring that residual bacteria is destroyed. In addition, they will have access to ozone generators and can help you find a good dehumidification unit to help prevent black mold growth and restore your home to pre-flood livability.

How Can a Mold Hygienist Help With a Mold Problem?

3/27/2020 (Permalink)

Structure with severe mold growth Severe mold growth in a property

One problem that frequently follows a home flood or leaky pipe situation is the growth of mold. The smelly black splotches are obvious when they grow on pipes or floors where dampness lingers. Mold can also thrive in shower door tracks, improperly sealed windows and interior foundation walls, among other places. Mold cleaning can go a long way toward mold remediation in your home.

When Is A Mold Hygienist Necessary?

On occasion, mold may not be visually obvious. An occasional whiff of the damp and musty odor may be your only clue. In cases such as this, mold cleaning may not be possible until a mold hygienist – a professional who tests for mold spores – has performed an inspection. This may be required in order to locate and assess the mold damage. Following are reasons a hygienist may be needed.

  • When nothing but the odor of the mold can be detected
  • To verify that black mold cleanup is needed when buying or selling a home
  • When you want to check air quality
  • As an occasional safety check if you have a swamp cooler
  • To prove to a landlord that there is mold damage that needs attention

What Happens Next?

Once the presence of mold is detected and located, you can move forward to the mold cleanup. Hard surfaces can simply be scrubbed and dried thoroughly. More porous materials, such as concrete or wood will require more intense measures or even removal and replacement. You may wish to have a mold remediation specialist in Upper Montclair, NJ take care of removing the mold, especially if the area is permeated. They can also use air filtration to treat the area for spores. You may also require a dehumidification unit.
Living with black mold is not an acceptable option, even if you think it is only the presence of odor. Appropriate mold cleaning measures can help restore a fresh, clean home

We are Cleaning Experts

3/20/2020 (Permalink)

Hand with glove spraying cleaner We can handle any cleaning job

SERVPRO is Here to Help during this time of need 

During this unprecedented time caused by the global pandemic of coronavirus, this is a reminder to our customers that we are specialists in cleaning services, and we adhere to the highest cleaning and sanitation standards. 

Specialized Training 

We are prepared to clean and disinfect your 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 

Specialized Products 

The CDC recommends usage of a labeled hospital-grade disinfectant with claims against similar pathogens to the coronavirus. Multiple products in the SERVPRO product line carry the EPA-approved emerging pathogens claims. While there is currently no product tested against this particular strain of the coronavirus, we are following all guidelines as provided by the CDC and local authorities. 

Call Today for a Proactive Cleaning 

If your home or business needs deep cleaning services, call the experts today – SERVPRO of Montclair/West Orange, (973) 669-4825