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Plan for Fire Safety This Fall | SERVPRO® of Northwest Bergen

9/16/2021 (Permalink)

a small campfire burning bright in the dark night Be mindful about fall fire safety. Always remember that SERVPRO of Northwest Bergen is the trusted leader in the restoration industry.

You could tell without a calendar that fall has arrived: The temperature is perfectly mild in a way that only happens for a brief period each year, the j-e-t-s are back on the field and there’s a pumpkin flavor of everything available.

Whatever your fall plans are this year, keep in mind a few basic fire safety tips to ensure safe enjoyment of Bergen’s most enjoyable season.

Campfire Safety

Fall is a perfect time for camping, and it can be a great activity this time of year. Just make sure you’re extra careful when building and putting out your campfire.

Your fire needs a 25-foot clearance from any tents or other structures. Ignite your fire only with old-school tools like matches or a lighter— kerosene or lighter fluid may get things going quickly but can get out of control just as quickly.

Make sure an adult is attending to the fire at all times, and be sure to completely put the fire out before you leave. Any warm ash or live embers you leave behind create a wildfire hazard, so make sure everything is cool to the touch and drowned in water.

Space Heaters

For the crisp mornings while you sip your pumpkin-spice coffee at your home office (or really anytime for the cold-natured among us), portable space heaters are a great solution to save energy but still provide some extra warmth. However, they’re one of the most frequent causes of home fire incidents, so take extra care with them.

Use only newer models, which will shut off if they tip over or overheat. Always keep your heater on a flat surface, away from anywhere children might play. Keep it at least three feet from anything—curtains, clothes, couches—that could ignite under intense heat.

Plug your heater directly into a power outlet, as opposed to an extension cord. And finally, make sure you turn it off anytime you leave the room, and certainly when you go to bed; never let it run overnight.

Halloween

When you’re decorating for Halloween, or for fall in general, it’s important to be aware of the presence of candles and their proximity to any decorations, particularly things like cobweb decor or paper items.

And if you’re planning outdoor parties and hanging lights, be sure to plug them in directly to outlets and unplug them when they’re not in use. A short circuit can spark a fire inside your walls, and strands of lights plugged into extensions are just the right recipe to cause one.

If a fire hazard should turn from potential to reality in your home, remember the trusted leader in the fire cleanup and recovery industry and contact SERVPRO to get your property fully restored right down to the smell of smoke.

Preempting Water Threats at Home | SERVPRO® of Northwest Bergen

9/7/2021 (Permalink)

a leak in ceiling creating water lines running down an interior wall A water leak can turn into a big problem. Contact the SERVPRO of Northwest Bergen team if you are dealing with any water damage.

Did You Know? Water is looking for ways to escape.

In every pipe, hose and connection, your water is waiting—even now—for an opportunity to break free of restraint and get out. And if it finds any opportunity to free itself, it will absolutely take it.

That’s why it’s important to be familiar with the areas around your home that may be susceptible to leaks and failures—and if you can keep your guard up, you might be able to catch some escapes before they happen.

Toilets. Your toilet only has a couple of places that would end up putting water in your actual floor—namely the valve seal, the supply hose and possibly the wax seal under the toilet itself. Inside the tank, you might develop leaks from your rubber flapper as well—these will waste water, but not spill it.

Appliances. If an appliance uses water, it has to use hoses, joints and washers to move that water around. Washing machines in particular are known for developing leaky hoses. Oh, and do mind the age of your water heater. If it gets too old, it is more like to burst.

Clogged gutters. Clogged gutters are probably the most preventable water damage scenario, because it’s a relatively simple task to get up there and remove the leaves and dirt that would become a problem.

Roof damage. Roof damage can come from environmental factors such as sun and rain over time, or acute factors like falling branches and hail. Inspect your shingles from the ground regularly and after any major storm event.

Pipes. Older pipers are prone to oxidation, but even newer pipes can burst or separate if joints aren’t fitted well. And outdoor pipes can get in trouble, too, especially from tree roots.

Blocked garbage disposals and sinks. The wrong foods can make it difficult for your disposal to work, or they can soak up a lot of water even after processing and dam up your sink’s pipes.

Water will try to escape through even the tiniest crack or deficiency, and you can’t predict everything—but routine inspection and prompt action may save you the headache of having to deal with the damage of a leak.

If a water leak erupts into a big problem at home, you’ve got the best team in the business on your side. Contact SERVPRO today so we can get started.

Fire Safety Tip: Summer Grilling Safety Tips

8/27/2021 (Permalink)

Outdoor BBQ Grill with safety tips. Call SERVPRO of Northwest Bergen for any size fire damage disaster.

Every year, approximately 8,900 home fires are started by backyard BBQ grills. 

SERVPRO of Northwest Bergen County has responded to many home fire cleanups due to owner complacency or faulty equipment. Don't let this happen to you, pay attention to a few safety rules and your summer BBQs should go off without a problem. 

Do:

1. Keep your grill at least 10 feet away from your house. Farther is even better. This includes portions attached to your house like carports, garages and porches. Grills should not be used underneath wooden overhangs either, as the fire could flare up into the structure above. This applies to both charcoal and gas grills.

2. Clean your grill regularly. If you allow grease and fat to build up on your grill, they provide more fuel for a fire. Grease is a major source of flare ups.

3. Check for gas leaks. You can make sure no gas is leaking from your gas grill by making a solution of half liquid dish soap and half water and rubbing it on the hoses and connections. Then, turn the gas on (with the grill lid open.) If the soap forms large bubbles, that's a sign that the hoses have tiny holes or that the connections are not tight enough.

4. Keep decorations away from your grill. Decorations like hanging baskets, pillows and umbrellas look pretty AND provide fuel for a fire. To make matters worse, today's decor is mostly made of artificial fibers that burn fast and hot, making this tip even more important.

5. Keep a spray bottle of water handy. That way, if you have a minor flare-up you can spray it with the water to instantly calm it. The bonus of this tip is that water won't harm your food, so dinner won't be ruined!

6. Keep a fire extinguisher within a couple steps of your grill. And KNOW HOW TO USE IT. If you are unsure how to use the extinguisher, don't waste time fiddling with it before calling 911. Firefighters say many fire deaths occur when people try to fight a fire themselves instead of calling for expert help and letting the fire department do its job.

Don't:

7.  Do Not turn on the gas while your grill lid is closed. NEVER do this. It causes gas to build up inside your grill, and when you do light it and open it, a fireball can explode in your face. 

8. Never leave a grill unattended. Fires double in size every minute. Plan ahead so that all of your other food prep chores are done and you can focus on grilling.

9. Never Overload your grill with food. This applies especially fatty meats. The basic reason for this tip is that if too much fat drips on the flames at once, it can cause a large flare-up that could light nearby things on fire.

10. Never Use a grill indoors. People often think it will be safe to use a grill, especially a small one, indoors. NOT TRUE. In addition to the fire hazard, grills release carbon monoxide, the deadly colorless, odorless gas. That gas needs to vent in fresh air or it can kill you, your family and pets.

SERVPRO of Northwest Bergen County is a premier fire and water cleanup company that is locally owned and operated. We are Here To Help, with 24/7 emergency service and highly trained IIRC Certified Technicians. 

Celebrating Over 25 Years of Service in Bergen County

8/20/2021 (Permalink)

Charlie Vingoe and Lauren Clarke at an employee appreciation night out. Call SERVPRO of Northwest Bergen for any water, fire or storm damage.

Charlie Vingoe's SERVPRO of Northwest Bergen is celebrating over 25 years of service!

Service and Expertise

As one of SERVPRO’s top 100 franchises in the nation for the past 15 years, Charlie’s SERVPRO of Northwest Bergen provides quality service, experience and expertise in emergency water, fire, sewage, mold and bio-hazard cleanups. We handle both residential and commercial properties in Bergen County and Northern New Jersey to make any fire, water, mold and biohazard disaster "Like it never even happened."

Excellent Staff
Believe it or not, Lauren Clarke was SERVPRO's first hire and is also celebrating 25 years of service! Our entire staff is fully trained and has years of experience. We strive to provide the best customer service on every job. 


Congratulations Charlie and Lauren!

Take Precautions Against Summer Storms | SERVPRO® of Northwest Bergen

8/20/2021 (Permalink)

a large lightning strike in a dark stormy sky If storms cause damage to your home or business, SERVPRO of Northwest Bergen is available 24/7, ready to make things right.

Summer in Mahwah or Ho-Ho-Kus probably means you’ve got lots of plans. Longer days full of sunshine call you outdoors to soak it all up while you can—maybe you’re headed into the city to root for the Bronx bombers, or maybe you’ve got plans to cool off at a local splash pad. But wherever you go, even in the sunniest time of the year, make sure you pack an umbrella.

Despite all the sunny weather (or truthfully because of it), Bergen County summers are actually more prone to produce thunderstorms than other seasons. July, for example, while not our rainiest month in terms of days, brings more precipitation than any other month, as summer warmth combines with atmospheric humidity to create afternoon and evening thunderstorms.

Be Storm-Alert

Storms can drop in with little notice during these months. If your local weatherperson issues an alert, or your weather app shows a storm icon, it’s time to get ready. An NOAA Weather radio on hand can be a handy asset as well, because it can keep you informed and focused, even if a storm knocks out your power.

If flooding is predicted, change your plans and stay indoors. You may need to take stock of the backyard as well, and move or tie down certain items that might blow over or wash away in a heavy storm.

Settling in for a storm doesn’t exactly thrill the heart as much as watching Aaron Judge thump baseballs, but it can be the difference maker in an emergency. A little extra caution or preparation could prevent many of the storm-related deaths each year.

Be Storm-Safe

Once the storm arrives, stay inside and safe. It’s dangerous outdoors until you’re 30 minutes past the last thunderclap.

Lightning can create problems indoors, too—showering, bathing, or standing near windows are all no-nos until the storm passes.

Hopefully, you’ve already got a stocked emergency kit, but now is the time to make sure it’s current. A mobile kit in the car can be a huge help as well if a surprise storm causes a need for evacuation.

If flooding does occur, stay out of the water at all costs, Aside from being physically dangerous, it’s also full of contaminants that can make you sick.

After any water damage situation, your primary focus should be safety first:

  • Is it safe to stay in the house?
  • Electrical and "slip and fall" hazards are some of the most prevalent concerns.
  • Only do activities that are safe for you to perform.
  • Wet materials can be VERY heavy. Be careful!

There are any number of dangers that can come into play in a thunderstorm, and it’s always best to be cautious and put things on hold until storms safely pass.

If storms cause damage to your home or business, SERVPRO is on the line, ready to make things right again.

Did You Know? SERVPRO of Northwest Bergen is a IICRC Certified Firm

8/17/2021 (Permalink)

Ariel view of residential neighborhood with SERPRO logo. Call SERVPRO of Northwest Bergen to handle any size water, fire or storm damage.

SERVPRO of Northwest Bergen, located in Bergen County is proud to be an IICRC Certified Firm. The IIRC, or the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification, is a non-profit organization that set standards for the cleaning and restoration industry.

“Standard Of Care"

The goal of the IIRC is to establish and advance globally recognized standards and certifications for the inspection, cleaning, and restoration and installation industries. To accomplish this goal, the IICRC sets standards and certifications for inspection, cleaning and restoration. The IICRC ensures that when the customers hire a certified firm or technician that they have hired experts who will provide reasonable assurance that work will be completed in accordance with the industry's “standard of care.”

The IICRC Certified Production Managers and Service Technicians at SERVPRO of Northwest Bergen  set themselves apart through SERVPRO training, years of work experience, and IICRC Certification. 

Don't trust your property to just anyone, trust the professionals at SERVPRO of Northwest Bergen.

Give us a call (201)236-2400.

Be Flood Smart in Bergen County

8/17/2021 (Permalink)

Rain on sidewalk with tips on how to stay safe. Call SERVPRO of Northwest Bergen to handle your water and storm damage disaster.

Water Damage from Heavy Rains and Flooding: Clean up & Restoration 

Flooding from a storm or heavy rains can happen fast. After the recent storms in Bergen County, New Jersey many homes have suffered water damage that never had any before.  In fact, 20% of all claims paid by the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) were for policies in low-risk communities. 

The American Red Cross recommends having the following list of items packed and ready to go in the event of an emergency or evacuation due to flooding.

  • Water-3+ day supply; one gallon per day per person
  • Food-3+day supply of non-perishable, easy to prepare food
  • Flashlight
  • Battery-powered or hand crank radio (NOAA Weather Radio, if possible)
  • Extra batteries (all sizes)
  • First Aid Kit
  • Medications (7 day supply) and medical items (hearing aids, glasses, contacts, syringes, canes)
  • Multi-purpose tool, supplies to secure your home
  • Personal hygiene items
  • Copies of personal documents (medication lists, deed/lease to home, insurance policies, birth certificates)
  • Cell phone with chargers
  • Family and emergency contact information
  • Extra cash
  • Blanket
  • Baby supplies, pet supplies
  • Maps
  • Extra car and house keys
  • Extra clothing for both warm, cold and rainy weather-sturdy footwear
  • Insect repellent and sunscreen
  • Camera for photos of damage

Be prepared and make sure your family is safe, then call our trusted office staff at (201)236-2400 to schedule an appointment with SERVPRO of Northwest Bergen County to handle the water damage cleanup professionally and quickly before any secondary mold damage can take over and cause even more costly repairs. 

Can Your Family Escape in Two Minutes?

8/17/2021 (Permalink)

Every Second Counts

Fire experts agree, people have as little as two minutes to escape a burning home before it's too late to get out.* In a matter of moments, a small flame can become a major fire, making it critical to be prepared and have an escape plan in place. Once a plan is developed, it is critical everyone in the home understands the plan; the best way to do this is by practicing the escape plan at least twice a year. Increase your chance of surviving a fire by ensuring you have working smoke detectors in place, building an escape plan, and then practicing the escape plan. The following are a few tips to help you develop a plan.

Draw a map of each level of your home and show all doors and windows. Find two ways to get out of each room. Make sure all doors and windows that lead outside open easily.

Consider escape ladders for sleeping areas on the second or third floors. Only purchase collapsible escape ladders evaluated by recognized testing laboratory.

Choose an outside meeting place a safe distance in front of your home where everyone can meet after they've escaped. Mark this place on your escape plan map.

Teach children how to escape on their own in case you can't help them. Plan for everyone in your home with special considerations for elderly or disabled individuals.

Practice your escape plan during the day and nighttime.

*Tips provided by the American Red Cross

Call SERVPRO after you and your family are safe, cleaning up after a fire can be overwhelming. However, prompt cleanup is critical to eliminate secondary damage from water and even mold. Trust the professionals at SERVPRO of Northwest Bergen to help you through the process of cleaning up after a fire damage event at your home or business. 

Bergen County Residents Trust Us for Recovery and Restoration | SERVPRO® of Northwest Bergen

8/12/2021 (Permalink)

damaged furniture and other home items sitting outside of red brick house When you are dealing with any damage, immediate action is crucial. SERVPRO of Northwest Bergen is your local restoration expert.

There are a lot of things you have to prepare for as a home or business owner. It’s a bit like running Grand Central Station—you have to make sure everything is running in its proper place and time and with its proper resources, and when something goes off the rails, you have to move swiftly to get it back on track.

But occasionally something comes along that upends the whole station, and that’s when we step in. You can’t fully prepare for a damaging fire or flood event, but it’s our job to be ready.

When disaster brings the trains to a screeching halt, make the call to SERVPRO.

We’re Always Ready and Faster to Any Size Disaster

We’re the team that never sleeps. We’re on call 24 hours a day to make sure we can react immediately when you have an emergent need.

Every moment of wasted time may mean a more engrained smoke smell, secondary mold damage or another set of ruined belongings. A rapid response makes recovery easier, and having a SERVPRO team right here in Bergen County means you not only get fast, local service from area professionals, but you also get the full force of SERVPRO’s national network of resources.

We’re Trained to Handle Residential and Commercial Services

The solution that’s right for a home may not be the same as the solution for a local business, and it’s our business to know the difference. We’ve got 50-plus years invested in making the right customized plan and executing it to perfection.

We’ll Make It "Like it never even happened."

While our methods are elaborate, our promise is plain: We’ll provide you with impeccable service, flawlessly executed, and we’ll leave your home or business so fully restored, you’ll have to check your journal to remember we were even there.

We Offer the Services You Need in a Changing World

It is incumbent on business owners to quell health concerns of returning customers. That’s why we developed the Certified: SERVPRO Cleaned program. Now you can have the cleanest place in town, and your customers can know it before they even step in.

Regardless of why you need cleanup or disaster recovery, SERVPRO of Northwest Bergen has the tools, the technicians and the training to get your situation under control. When you’re ready to get help from the best, get in touch with SERVPRO.

After The Storm: SERVPRO of Northwest Bergen Is Here To Help

8/12/2021 (Permalink)

Home flooded by dirty water When you are dealing with any damage, immediate action is crucial. SERVPRO of Northwest Bergen is your local restoration expert.

After any water damage situation, like a storm your primary focus should be safety first:

  • Is it safe to stay in the house?
  • Electrical and "slip and fall" hazards are some of the most prevalent concerns.
  • Only do activities that are safe for you to perform.
  • Wet materials can be VERY heavy. Be careful!

Floods from heavy rains is one of the most common and widespread natural disasters in the United States, and can happen to your Bergen County home. Whether your home or business is near a coastline, along a city street, in the mountains, near a river or even in a desert--there is always a potential for flood damage. 

Floodsmart.gov reports, in the last 5 years, all 50 states have experienced floods or flash floods. 

If a flood does strike your home or business, contact the professionals at SERVPRO of Northwest Bergen County, even minor floods can lead to major damage when not treated quickly and properly. Cleanup is often an overwhelming task for the average homeowner without the right equipment. SERVPRO of Northwest Bergen County Service Technicians can handle any size disaster large or small. Read Storm and Water Damage Tips