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Protect Your Home Now!

11/28/2021 (Permalink)

We urge Cape May and Cumberland County residents to prepare for severe weather by following these winter safety tips.

How to Protect Your Home in Severe Weather

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) says to be sure you have these things:

  • Snow shovels – more than one because they can break, and four hands are better than two, if you have them
  • De-icers, preferably the pet-safe type*
  • Extra fuel such as firewood, a full propane tank, or a generator
  • Clean blankets, pillows, warm clothing, etc., because you might not be able to do laundry for awhile
  • Food and water that doesn’t require refrigeration
  • Transistor radio with new batteries — and backup batteries

*When it comes to de-icers, some of the more environmentally-safe types include calcium magnesium acetate and sand to improve traction. Be sure to stock up early in the season, as they become scarce before a well-publicized storm.

How to Winterize Your Home

High winds, ice, and moisture from winter storms can easily strip off roof tiles and gutters, exposing your home to serious damage. Make sure no roof tiles are loose or missing. Do the same with your gutters and siding.  

  • Check roof tiles, shutters, siding, and other exterior materials to ensure they’re secure
  • Seal air leaks around the home to keep it warmer (and save energy costs)
  • Insulate all exposed plumbing pipes to prevent burst pipes
  • Trim tree branches away from your roof to prevent roof damage

Clean Your Gutters.

If you don’t, you risk an ice dam. What’s an ice dam? Ice dams occur when ice melts off the roof during the day and then re-freezes as it drips into a clogged gutter. This can force water back under the roofline and cause serious leaks, often thousands of dollars in damage!

Overgrown tree branches are a risk to your home, vehicles, and loved ones. But trimming and removal can be dangerous, too, so don’t attempt it on your own. Best to hire a professional!

Insulate Your Pipes.

Buy foam insulation to cover your pipes. Invest in a temporary patch kit in case you need it later in the season. While you’re insulating your pipes, remind yourself where all water shut-off valves are so you can turn off the water supply in case of any leaks.

NOW you’re ready for a snow day, but if you find yourself with winter storm or severe weather damage, read more HERE for important tips to help. We're here 24/7, 365 days a year to make it, "Like it never even happened."

Winterize Your Most Valuable Asset!

11/17/2021 (Permalink)

Winterize and Protect Your Most Valuable Asset!

Check off these items to protect your home or business from storm damage:

  • Have a professional inspect your heating system annually.
  • Clean your fireplace or stove and have your flue checked for any buildup of creosote. Be sure other fuel burning equipment is properly vented to the outside.
  • Insulate your home properly. If necessary, insulate walls and attics to conserve energy.
  • Caulk doors and windows to keep cold air out.
  • Install storm windows, or cover windows with plastic from the inside to provide an extra layer of insulation.
  • Protect pipes from freezing:
    • Wrap pipes in insulation or layers of old newspapers. Cover the newspapers with plastic to keep out moisture.
    • Turn both hot and cold faucets to continuously drip a little.
    • Keep a wrench near the valves and know how to shut off your water valves if a pipe bursts.
  • Inspect and flush your water heater.
  • Clean gutters. Leaves and other debris will hamper drainage.
  • Cut away tree branches that can fall on the house during an ice storm or from heavy snow. Notify the utility company of branches that overhang power lines; do not attempt to trim by yourself.
  • Replace batteries for smoke, and carbon monoxide detectors. If you did not do this when you set the clocks back, do it now.
  • Have a back-up power source in place if you are dependent upon electricity for medical or mobility needs.
  • Know where your snow shovel is located and have a supply of sand or a sand substitute.
  • Prepare a warm, safe place for your animals in severe winter weather. Make sure any outbuilding that houses or shelters animals can withstand wind, heavy snow and ice.
    • Bring pets indoors. Horses and livestock should have a shelter protected from wind, snow, ice and rain. Grazing animals need access to a protected supply of food and non-frozen water.
    • Make sure your animals have access to high ground in case you do not have time to relocate them during a flood.
  • Be aware of the potential for flooding when snow and ice melt.
  • Consider purchasing flood insurance. Homeowners' policies do not cover damage from floods. Ask your insurance agent about the National Flood Insurance Program if you are at risk.

If the Power Goes Out Follow These Tips:

  • Dress in warm, light layers and wear a cap for warmth.
  • Close off unused rooms.
  • Eat well-balanced meals for energy.
  • Use only safe sources of alternate heat such as a fireplace, a small well-vented wood or coal stove, or portable space heaters. Always follow manufacturers' instructions and never substitute one type of fuel for another.

Clearing Your Roof:

  • Clearing your roof is a dangerous task. Always think about safety first. If possible, do not attempt to clear the roof alone.
  • When possible use long-handled rakes or poles.
  • If you must use a ladder, make sure the base is securely anchored. Ask someone to hold the ladder while you climb.
  • Know where the snow is going to fall before clearing the area.
  • Make sure you do not touch electrical wires.
  • If the job is too big for you, HIRE HELP.

If you have storm damage to your property, call the Franchise Professionals at SERVPRO of Cape May & Cumberland Counties, 609-624-0202. We make it, "Like it never even happened."

The information in this blog is obtained from Ready.nj.gov (the New Jersey Office of Emergency Management).

Faster to Any Size Disaster!

11/12/2021 (Permalink)

Whether it's from wind, ice, rain or fire, SERVPRO of Cape May & Cumberland Counties provides 24-hour emergency services and is FASTER to any size DISASTER!

Board-ups/Roof Tarping/Property Securing - In some cases it may be important to secure openings to your home or structure using sturdy, durable materials designed to protect it from both weather intrusion and intrusion by outsiders. SERVPRO of Cape May & Cumberland Counties Franchise Professionals may perform the board-up and tarping themselves, or outside subcontractors may be utilized.

Move-Outs - If prolonged exposure to the loss event could cause additional damage to your contents, your contractor requests relocation of the contents, or the safety of your contents is a concern, a move-out may be recommended. In these situations, SERVPRO of Cape May & Cumberland Counties Franchise Professionals are trained to properly inventory, move out and control the contents from the structure during the cleaning, restoration and deodorization process.

Reconstruction Services - Once the damaged materials are removed from your home or business other construction may be needed to restore your property to preloss condition. Your local SERVPRO of Cape May & Cumberland Counties Franchise Professional is trained with the proper equipment to replace flooring, carpet, tile, hardwood floors, and doors (interior, exterior, steel & storefront). We can paint many surfaces, work on acoustic ceilings, trim, bathroom/kitchen remodels and home/office renovations.

We also provide the following services: 

  • Temporary Power Rental
  • Temporary Fencing
  • Storage Services
  • Packing Supplies
  • Furniture & Fine Art Restoration

For all of your restoration and reconstruction needs, contact the Franchise Professionals at SERVPRO of Cape May & Cumberland Counties: 609-624-0202 or email.

We make it, "Like it never even happened."®

SERVPRO of Cape May & Cumberland Counties serves Cape May, Ocean City, Wildwood and surrounding communities in Cape May County. We also serve, Bridgeton, Millville, Vineland and surrounding communities in Cumberland County.

How Can You Prevent Mold in Your Home

11/12/2021 (Permalink)

How Can You Prevent Mold in Your Home?

When there’s moisture in your home, there’s a risk for mold growth. While this is usually a harmless fungus found everywhere in nature, it can be particularly dangerous inside homes. Specifically, when mold spores are inhaled, some individuals—such as those with asthma or allergies—can develop breathing problems, skin irritation, and congestion.

Fortunately, there are several steps you can take to protect your household. Offering advanced mold remediation services in Cape May County, SERVPRO® of Cape May & Cumberland Counties highlights some of the best ways to keep the problem at bay:

Ways to Prevent Mold Growth

  1. Repair Water Damage Risks

Water damage of any size can spark mold growth within 24 to 48 hours. To stay proactive, routinely inspect for moisture risks—such as leaking pipes and drafty windows—and have them repaired. You should also take care to maintain proper drainage outside the home, as dysfunctional gutters can cause water to seep into the walls and basement.

In the event your home experiences water damage, acting fast will help reduce the risk of mold growth. Whether you have a flood or a plumbing emergency, call a water restoration service to quickly dry and clean the area. If growth has already begun, these professionals will provide thorough mold remediation to stop the problem from spreading.

  1. Control Humidity

Mold thrives in humid conditions, so it’s recommended you keep your home’s humidity levels at 60% or below. You can monitor these levels using a simple tool known as a hygrometer. If there’s too much humidity, dehumidifiers and air conditioners will help bring the levels down.  

  1. Invest in Ventilation

Cooking, taking showers, and washing laundry are all common activities that introduce moisture. To prevent the need for mold remediation, it’s important to ensure your home has the proper ventilation that allows moisture to escape. For example, use exhaust fans in the kitchen and bathroom to direct moist air outside. If you don’t have these, it can help to open windows or doors to promote air flow.

Whether you’ve found mold in your home or want to keep water damage from causing problems, SERVPRO of Cape May & Cumberland Counties is here to help. Equipped with heavy-duty tools, our restoration specialists are able to provide fast, thorough, and affordable mold remediation services. If you’re facing an emergency, such as a flooded basement or crawlspace, our experts offer round-the-clock service to get water out and dry wet areas to prevent mold growth. Call a Franchise Professional at 609-624-0202.

Guest Speaker Services in Cape May County

11/12/2021 (Permalink)

Need a Guest Speaker for Your Next Seminar or Meeting?

We would be happy to host a breakfast or lunch at your office and connect with your colleagues. We offer a wide range of residential and commercial topics and services that may help your clients and educate you with industry-specific tips to prepare for emergencies.

Our presentations are delivered by a Franchise Professional trained as a presenter. Our topics and services include: Fire, Water, Mold & Biohazard Cleanup, Remediation and Restoration. We're the experts in catastrophic storm response and can explain the how and why of cleaning, water removal and dehumidification, mold remediation, and the cleaning of air ducts, HVAC units, and restoration after fire damage.

For more information about our free guest speaker services, please contact Harold Lapp, Jr., 609-624-0202 or Email.

Recent Guest Speaker Appearances: Berkshire Hathaway-OC & SIC, Sea Isle Realty, Long & Foster-CM, Re-Max Beach Home Realty-SIC, Jersey Cape Realty-CM, and Berger Realty-OC.

Keep Fall FIRE Free

10/3/2021 (Permalink)

Cooler temperatures and beautiful colors define the beginning of the Fall season; and with an abundance of outdoor family activities, it's a good idea to plan ahead to make sure your Fall is FIRE Free.

DECORATIONS: Fall decorations, like dried flowers and cornstalks, are highly flammable. Be sure to keep these decorations away from any open flames, including light bulbs and heaters, which are other heat sources.

It is safest to use a flashlight or battery-operated candle in a jacko-lantern. Use extreme caution if using a real candle. Place lit pumpkins away from anything that can burn and out of the way of doorsteps, walkways, and yards.

EXITS: Keep emergency exits of your home or business clear of decorations so nothing blocks escape routes.

TEACH: Teach your children to always stay away from open flames. Be sure they know how to stop, drop, and roll if their clothing catches fire.

Stay safe this Fall, and KEEP FALL FIRE FREE.

*This information is provided by the National Fire Protection Association, nfpa.org.

5 Things to Know About Water Damage

9/28/2021 (Permalink)

Leaking pipes, burst sewer lines, and natural disasters can often leave your home severely water damaged. If your property is affected by water damage, it’s critical to identify the cause and act quickly to avoid further destruction.

Household water damage can be very stressful to deal with, especially when it leads to more problems down the line. While these repairs often require the help of professionals, there are a few DIY steps you can follow to help limit the damage where possible.

What Does Water Damage Affect?

Water is critical to life, but it can also destroy everything in its path – leaving you with a huge mess to clean up. As a homeowner, it is important to understand what areas water can seriously damage within your home. To be safe, always inspect the following locations for damage:

  • Drywall
  • Plaster
  • Insulation
  • Wood
  • Framing
  • Floor coverings
  • Electrical wiring
  • Pipes
  • Appliances
  • HVAC

As you can see, water can wreak havoc on your home’s foundation and quickly wrack up a hefty restoration bill if left unattended. Therefore, important to act swiftly before the damage becomes worse.

What to Consider Before Water Damage Restoration?

To determine whether you will clean up the area yourself or hire water damage restoration experts, the first thing you want to do is to evaluate the situation and consider a few of the following factors:

Water Volume

If your home is experiencing a small or moderate amount of water, you can typically manage it on your own if you have the proper tools. However, if there is significant flooding that is not going away despite your efforts, it might be best to call a professional.

If your neighborhood is recovering from a natural disaster or large flood, and your home has suffered significant damage, it may not be the time for a DIY project. Follow the instructions from your local disaster relief authorities and leave these repairs to the experts.

Source of Damage

Before you dive into water damage restoration, you need to discover where the water is coming from. There are three types of water you need to look out for when you have a flooding issue in your home.

  1. Clean water: From rain or leaky pipes, this water does not contain harmful chemicals and is safe to handle yourself.
  2. Gray water: Leaking from appliances like your dishwasher, toilet, or washing machine. Gray water may be slightly contaminated. With the proper precautions, you can clean this yourself. 
  3. Black water: The most harmful type of water, blackwater comes from the sewer or flooding from a nearby water source such as a river. It often contains health hazards and is unsafe to handle.

Damage Level

Lastly, you’ll want to assess the level of damage. Light damage can often be handled by the homeowner, however, significant damage can be hazardous and dangerous to repair without the help of a professional. For example, if flooding on an upper level has seeped through the floor onto the ceiling, the damage is beyond your ability to safely restore.

5 DIY Water Damage Restoration Tips for Your Home

Now that you have properly assessed the situation, consider these water damage restoration tips to ensure repairs are done quickly. It is important to note that wet materials may begin to develop mold after 24 hours, so you don’t have time to wait!

1. Disconnect Outlets

The first thing to do when you discover water damage in your home is to unplug all electronics immediately. While you may not see the severity of the water damage just yet, it’s important to be cautious around appliances and gas lines. Using this equipment despite the situation could cause electrical shocks or even explosions. 

2. Inspect Mold

Certain mold strains are toxic to humans and can pose serious health risks. Most of the time, mold can spread quickly once it infests an area, so it is in your best interest to inspect for growth to avoid any health hazards. For small issues, you can cut out the affected area, bag it, and dispose of it immediately. However, with serious mold infestations, you need to shut down any airflow to stop contamination and then call a mold specialist. Oftentimes, mold can appear inside the walls or floors, so it’s important that this inspection is ongoing throughout the restoration.

3. Dry Water Out

Before more damage occurs, you need to eliminate all moisture and dry out the affected areas. You can use fans or a large-capacity dehumidifier to circulate air and dry out the carpet, wood, and other surrounding materials. While this won’t prevent mold growth altogether, properly drying out the area will help lessen the damage.

4. Remove Damaged Materials

If your porous materials, like insulation or carpet, are soaked with water, you need to dispose of them immediately to avoid mildew. It is important to focus on the ceiling and floors first. This means unsealed cement, drywall, and wood need to be addressed and replaced so the home’s structure can support water damage repair. 

5. Disinfect Remaining Areas

Depending on the type of water you are dealing with, it can contain a lot of bacteria and other hazards that can cause health problems. The water could also encourage the growth of mold, so it is important to sanitize immediately. Once the damaged materials have been removed, you will want to disinfect the entire area before you begin the restoration process. Spray and wipe down the surfaces with bleach so the mold spores don’t grow before you continue with the repairs.

Call SERVPRO of Cape May & Cumberland Counties for Your Water Damage Restoration

While water damage can be very stressful for homeowners, it is possible to restore your home back to normal with the right steps. When taking on your own restoration, it’s important to properly assess the situation before moving forward to avoid any health hazards.

If you’re looking for guidance or believe the damage is beyond what you can handle, it’s always a good idea to leave water damage restoration to the professionals – contact  a Franchise Professional for 24/7 support by calling 609-624-0202 or contact us via EMAIL.

We guarantee your satisfaction. Want proof? Read any of our testimonials or view any of our recent videos.

SERVPRO of Cape May County serves Cape May, Ocean City, Wildwood and surrounding communities in Cape May County. SERVPRO of Cumberland County serves Bridgeton, Millville, Vineland and surrounding communities in Cumberland County.

Commercial Building & Reconstruction Services

9/28/2021 (Permalink)

Commercial Building and Reconstruction Services For Your Business

When your home or business has been damaged by fire, water, or storm damage, the immediate concern should be temporary protective measures such as placing roof tarps to prevent additional damage, and boarding up to secure the building and remove water and debris.

After protecting and securing the structure, the Franchise Professionals at SERVPRO of Cape May & Cumberland Counties can begin the restoration process. Part of the restoration process may include reconstruction work for your home or business to get your property back to its preloss condition.

The Franchise Professionals at SERVPRO of Cape May & Cumberland Counties can simplify the restoration process by handling both the initial damage mitigation and rebuilding the affected areas. Having one qualified company for the entire process can save time and keeps costs low.

SERVPRO of Cape May & Cumberland Counties can provide this continuity by offering a full range of restoration services that will bring a building back to full functionality. SERVPRO of Cape May & Cumberland Counties holds a general contractor license (NJ #13VH05808500), and a home improvement contractor's license (#PA130066)- as well as the specialized experience to rebuild the damage and make it, "Like it never even happened." Our services include:

  • Board Up
  • Carpet Repair and Installation
  • Document Drying
  • Dry Cleaning
  • Drywall Installation
  • Drywall Removal
  • Electrical
  • Electronics Restoration
  • Fine Art Restoration
  • Furniture Restoration
  • General Contracting
  • Hardwood Floor Repair
  • HVAC Services
  • Linoleum Floor Repair
  • Marble Floor Repair
  • Move Out
  • Painting
  • Plumbing
  • Portable Power
  • Roof Tarp
  • Roofing Services
  • Scalable Resources
  • Temporary Fencing
  • Temporary Warehouse Space
  • Tile Floor Repair
  • Tree Removal
Call a Franchise Professional Today: 609-624-0202. We're Here to Help 24/7.  

Need A Guest Speaker for an Event?

9/27/2021 (Permalink)

Planning an educational event for your organization? Need a Guest Speaker?

We can help! SERVPRO of Cape May  and Cumberland Counties offers Guest Speaker services at no charge. Our Franchise Professionals are experienced in delivering keynotes, moderating panels, conducting training sessions, and more - we are available for events of all sizes and are eager to share our knowledge and expertise that your organization may be looking for in your next training event.

SERVPRO is a trusted leader in the cleaning and restoration industry with over 1,900 franchises in the United States. We know cleaning and restoration from A to Z.

We offer many topics of interest that are engaging, relevant, and important. We'll also do our best to accommodate your schedule. We can come to you or as an alternative, you can come to us! Need a venue? Let us know!

To request a speaker for your next event, or to for more information about the topics we can cover, contact us via email. The opportunities are endless!

Meet Barbara Stafford-Jones!

9/27/2021 (Permalink)

Barbara Stafford-Jones

(click my name to find me on LinkedIn)

Owner and Business Development Director of:

SERVPRO of Cape May County
2684 Route 9 N.
Ocean View, NJ 08230
609-624-0202

SERVPRO of Cumberland County
595 Sherman Avenue
Millville, NJ 08332
856-692-0041

EMAIL me any time - I am always Here to Help!