Recent Fire Damage Posts

Prevent Fire in Your Home

7/13/2019 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Prevent Fire in Your Home Prevent Fire With Smoke Detectors

Keep your family safe with a working smoke alarm in every bedroom.

Did you know that roughly half of home fire deaths result from fires reported between 11 p.m. and 7 a.m., when most people are asleep?

Smoke alarms save lives. If there is a fire in your home, smoke spreads fast and you need smoke alarms to give you time to get out. In fact, having a working smoke alarm cuts the chances of dying in a reported fire in half!

When it comes to smoke alarms, it’s about “location, location, location”.

The key message from Fire Departments everywhere, is to install smoke alarms in every bedroom, outside each separate sleeping area, and on every level of your home, including the basement (if you have one). Larger homes may need more alarms.

The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) shares this important information so everyone better understands the life-saving value of home smoke alarms. Visit NFPA's website for more information.

The above information and more courtesy of the National Fire Prevention Association. 

For information on what to do AFTER call a Franchise Professional at 609-624-0202. We're here 24/7 every day of the year.

Cape May County Smoke and Soot Cleanup

6/21/2018 (Permalink)

Smoke and soot is very invasive and can penetrate various cavities within your home, causing hidden damage and odor. Our smoke damage expertise and experience allows us to inspect and accurately assess the extent of the damage to develop a comprehensive plan of action. 

Smoke and Soot Facts:

  • Hot smoke migrates to cooler areas and upper levels of a structure.
  • Smoke flows around plumbing systems, seeping through the holes used by pipes to go from floor to floor.
  • The type of smoke may greatly affect the restoration process.

Different Types of Smoke:

There are two different types of smoke–wet and dry. As a result, there are different types of soot residue after a fire. Before restoration begins, SERVPRO® of Cape May County will test the soot to determine which type of smoke damage occurred. The cleaning procedures will then be based on the information identified during pretesting.

Here is some additional information:

Wet Smoke – Plastic and Rubber

  • Low heat, smoldering, pungent odor, sticky, smeary. Smoke webs are more difficult to clean.

Dry Smoke – Paper and Wood

  • Fast burning, high temperatures, heat rises therefore smoke rises.

Protein Fire Residue – Produced by evaporation of material rather than from a fire

  • Virtually invisible, discolors paints and varnishes, extreme pungent odor.

Our Fire Damage Restoration Services.

Since each smoke and fire damage situation is a little different, each one requires a unique solution tailored for the specific conditions. 

We have the equipment, expertise, and experience to restore your fire and smoke damage.  We will also treat your family with empathy and respect and your property with care.

Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage? Call Us Today – 609-624-0202

4 Ways to Protect Your Home From Electrical Fire Damage

5/8/2018 (Permalink)

Powering everything from light bulbs to kitchen appliances, electricity provides much of the comforts people enjoy at home. But while this power source may make life easier, SERVPRO® of Cape May County reminds consumers that it’s not used without risk. In fact, research estimates that nearly 51,000 homes encounter electrical-related fire damage a year. Here are a few tips to help protect your family — and your home — from electrical fires:

How to Prevent Electrical Fire Damage

  1. Schedule Inspections

Since electrical wires are usually hidden within walls, it’s not always easy to tell if a fire risk is present. The best way to catch these dangers early on — and have them repaired — is to schedule an inspection with a professional electrician about once every five years. In addition to checking wiring, these professionals can also assess the safety of your outlets and overall power use.

  1. Avoid Overloading

 Plugging too many devices into a single outlet can strain your electrical system and increase the risk of fire. Unplug appliances when you aren’t using them and avoid using extension cords for prolonged periods. Also, follow all wattage recommendations when installing light bulbs.

  1. Keep Cords in Control

Electrical cords that are damaged in any way should never be used — particularly if there is any visibly exposed wire. Cords should also be kept uncovered and away from flammable objects and water sources.  

  1. Check Smoke Detectors

If an electrical fire occurs, smoke detectors can provide a second line of defense to help you avoid and minimize danger. Test all smoke detectors once a month and swap the batteries annually.

While following these steps will reduce the risk of electrical fires in the home, it’s still important to know who to call when problems occur.

Once fires have been put out, SERVPRO of Cape May County will help put your home back in order. Offering end-to-end care, our highly trained technicians will assess the fire damage, clean soot, repair structural damage, and remove smoke odors. Committed to helping homeowners regain comfort as soon as possible, our team also offers emergency restoration services 24/7. Call (609) 624-0202 for immediate assistance.

5 Common Causes of Fire Damage & How to Avoid Them

4/25/2018 (Permalink)

According to the National Fire Protection Association, fire departments in the United States responded to a house fire every 86 seconds. Given this risk, it’s critical for homeowners to pinpoint potential triggers and take action to prevent fire damage. As you review your home safety, here are a few common causes of house fires you should stay aware of.  

What Can Turn Into a House Fire?

  1. Portable Heaters

When winter strikes, a portable heater may provide the little bit of extra warmth you need to stay comfortable. However, these devices can get extremely hot and ignite surrounding objects — such as curtains and furniture. If you must use a portable heater, never leave it unattended and make sure it’s not near any flammable items.

  1. Kitchen Accidents

 It takes a lot of heat to cook food, so danger can arise quickly if it’s not properly controlled. Gas stoves, grease, and food left in the oven for too long are all potential sources of fire damage. Minimize these risks by supervising meal preparation activities, keeping curious kids away from active stoves, and maintaining a clean kitchen space.

  1. Faulty Wires

Since electrical wires remain hidden behind walls, it can be hard to detect potential risks caused by factors like old age or pets that chew through cables. Call an electrician for an inspection at the first sign of trouble, such as flickering lights, malfunctioning outlets, and mysterious burning smells. A professional survey is also a good idea if your wiring is over 20 years old.

  1. Smoking

When dropped into the trash or left unattended, cigarettes can quickly spark massive flames, especially if everyone in the house is asleep. The best way to prevent this problem is to smoke outdoors — or quit.

  1. Candles

Open flames from candles can feel inviting and elegant, but they aren’t as contained as you might think. When flames get too big or candles are knocked over, they can trigger massive house fires. Always blow out lit candles before leaving a room or use battery-operated versions that do not use real flames.

Watching out for these risks can help prevent house fires, but there may be instances where the danger is simply out of your control. For these situations, turn to SERVPRO® OF CAPE MAY COUNTY for complete residential restoration services. Our trained experts use state-of-the-art tools to safely remove and restore fire damage, as well as water damage resulting from fire hoses. Call (609) 624-0202 to request assistance. 

What Is Furnace Puff Back & How Should You Handle It?  

4/11/2018 (Permalink)

If you use an oil furnace, it’s important to know about the risk of puff backs. Essentially, furnace puff backs occur when burners do not ignite on start-up, causing excess oil fumes to combust. This reaction produces a great deal of smoke that causes soot to spread throughout the house.

When this happens, SERVPRO® of Cape May County recommends acting fast to protect your health and your belongings from smoke damage. To help you stay prepared, we highlight a few do’s and don’ts to follow when you experience a furnace puff back:

DO:

Protect your belongings.

Soot can spread quickly, so you’ll need to act fast to keep it from setting on your belongings. If you have a forced air system, tape cheesecloth over the vents to help keep particles from coming through the ducts. You can also place towels over carpets, rugs, and upholstery to provide a protective barrier.

Review your homeowner’s insurance policy.

Since it takes special tools and experience to properly clean smoke damage, you’ll need to call a residential restoration service provider to clear your home of soot. But before you call, check your homeowner’s insurance policy, as most providers cover this kind of restoration.

Have your furnace inspected.

Although puff backs can be one-off events, the problem may have occurred due to a mechanical issue with the equipment. To prevent further puff backs, have a heating specialist inspect and repair your furnace.

DON'T:

Touch or breathe soot.

Soot can be extremely hazardous to your health when inhaled, as it contains a variety of toxic components and carcinogens. Limit movement and keep individuals out of the home until the problem is resolved. As you protect your belongings, cover your mouth and nose with a face mask. Additionally, throw away any exposed food.

Try to clean surfaces.

While it’s fine to take steps to shield items from smoke damage, you shouldn’t try to clean surfaces. Standard cleaning supplies will not remove soot and may only cause particles to settle in further. Instead, wait for a professional smoke and fire damage restoration team to clean the area.

Increase air circulation.

You may be tempted to turn on a fan or open windows to eliminate smoke, but increased air circulation will only spread particles. To keep the problem contained, try to keep airflow to a minimum.

When furnace puff backs occur, SERVPRO of Cape May County offers fast, thorough, and affordable restoration services. Equipped with specialized cleaning products, our professionals minimize smoke damage in your home and eliminate stubborn odors. To request assistance, call 609-624-0202 to reach a specialist 24 hours a day, seven days a week.  

The Do's & Don’ts of Recovering From Fire Damage

4/2/2018 (Permalink)

A fire is one of the most damaging and traumatic events that can happen to a home or business. Although the safety of everyone in the building is the top priority, knowing the steps to take to recover from fire damage can provide a clear road map to normalcy. Here are some do’s and don’ts to keep in mind.

DO:

Cover carpets.

Even when the flames are extinguished, fire damage can continue if the necessary precautions aren’t taken. A lot of ash and soot hangs in the air after a fire. When this material settles, it will damage your carpets and floors. To mitigate these effects, cover these surfaces with old towels or sheets. The extra barrier will keep them free of soot and make them easier to clean.

Call professionals as soon as possible.

Although there are some basic actions you can do yourself to help recover from fire damage, most of the work is for professionals only. Call a restoration company after a fire to keep you safe and pave the way for a speedier recovery for your home or business.

DON'T:

Clean furniture or upholstery yourself.

While it might be tempting to start cleaning as soon as possible, doing so can do more harm than good. Without professional experience and know-how, cleaning furniture and upholstery can spread the damage and soot to other areas of the items. It’s best to leave the heavy lifting to fire damage professionals.

Use electrical appliances.

Fire can impact different appliances in different ways. Even if an item seems to be in good shape, the blaze could’ve had unexpected effects that make it dangerous for use. Refrain from using any electrical appliances until they’ve been tested. 

SERVPRO® of Cape May County is the go-to source for fire damage recovery in the Ocean View, NJ, area. With more than 50 years of experience, the company takes pride in helping both residential and commercial customers recover from water damage, mold, and storms. To schedule service, call (609) 624-0202 today.

A Brief Guide to Fire Damage Remediation.

4/2/2018 (Permalink)

When you’ve been the victim of fire damage, having a trusted remediation company pick up the pieces makes the process much easier for you and your family. SERVPRO® of Cape May County knows that if you’ve suffered a fire emergency, you’ve likely got a lot of questions about the next step. Here, we have demystified the remediation process with the following guide: 

What Does the Fire Damage Remediation Process Entail? 

Remediation Professionals Assess Damage 

After emergency personnel has deemed your property safe to enter, a restoration team will go inside and assess the fire damage. They examine how far the fire, soot, and smoke spread throughout the home. They’ll also determine how much damage your furniture and walls received from the fire. After giving it a detailed assessment, they’ll come up with a remediation plan and provide an accurate estimate. 

The Cleanup Process Begins 

Next, the team begins the cleanup process. First, they’ll remove and dispose of items that were too damaged to be salvaged. They’ll clean walls, carpeting, and other areas affected by smoke and fire. These fire damage professionals also remove carpeting and any lingering odors. In some cases, a pipe may have burst due to extreme heat; if this happens, the team will perform both fire and water damage cleanup.

Repair & Restoration

After cleaning and disposing of damaged materials, fire remediation professionals repair and restore your home. This includes fixing fire-damaged furniture and installing new cabinets, carpeting, and wallpaper. Many companies are also equipped to repair damaged electronics, making it possible to keep your appliances.  

Having a reliable remediation service on hand helps minimize costly fire damage to your home. The professionals from SERVPRO of Cape May County are always available to take your call. Call 609-624-0202 for a complete list of services.

Cape May County Smoke and Soot Cleanup

6/2/2017 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Cape May County Smoke and Soot Cleanup Smoke and Soot Damage in a Cape May County Home.

Smoke and soot is very invasive and can penetrate various cavities within your home, causing hidden damage and odor. Our smoke damage expertise and experience allows us to inspect and accurately assess the extent of the damage to develop a comprehensive plan of action. 

Smoke and Soot Facts:

  • Hot smoke migrates to cooler areas and upper levels of a structure. 
  • Smoke flows around plumbing systems, seeping through the holes used by pipes to go from floor to floor. 
  • The type of smoke may greatly affect the restoration process. 

Different Types of Smoke: 

There are two different types of smoke–wet and dry. As a result, there are different types of soot residue after a fire. Before restoration begins, SERVPRO® of Cape May County will test the soot to determine which type of smoke damage occurred. The cleaning procedures will then be based on the information identified during pretesting. 

Here is some additional information: 

Wet Smoke – Plastic and Rubber 

  • Low heat, smoldering, pungent odor, sticky, smeary. Smoke webs are more difficult to clean. 
  • Dry Smoke – Paper and Wood
  • Fast burning, high temperatures, heat rises therefore smoke rises.
  • Protein Fire Residue – Produced by evaporation of material rather than from a fire
  • Virtually invisible, discolors paints and varnishes, extreme pungent odor.

    Our Fire Damage Restoration Services

    Since each smoke and fire damage situation is a little different, each one requires a unique solution tailored for the specific conditions.  We have the equipment, expertise, and experience to restore your fire and smoke damage.  We will also treat your family with empathy and respect and your property with care.

    Have Questions about Fire, Smoke, or Soot Damage? Call Us Today – 609-624-0202.

Electrical Fire Safety in Cape May County

6/2/2017 (Permalink)

The Electrical Safety Foundation International (ESFI), a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting electrical safety in homes, schools, and workplaces.

The ESFI educates us about the steps that can be taken to reduce the number of electrical-related fires, fatalities, injuries, and property loss.

Did you know that an electrical outlet can do much more than provide electricity? Electrical outlets can be life saving devices by preventing shocks, burns and even fires.

Specialized electrical outlets can provide you with a safer home and work environment. Do your outlets need an upgrade?

Protect yourself from electrical fires. Visit the ESFI website for more information.

If you have any questions about electrical fires or electrical fire damage, be sure to contact SERVPRO of Cape May County at 609-624-0202.

Avoid Cooking Fires in Cape May County!

2/6/2017 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Avoid Cooking Fires in Cape May County! Fire Damage from a Cooking Fire.

According to the National Fire Protection Association, cooking is the main cause for home fires and injuries. Review the following safety tips to help ensure you enjoy safe cooking in your Cape May County home!

  • Do not wear loose clothing or dangling sleeves while cooking;
  • Never leave cooking food unattended-stay in the kitchen when frying, grilling, or broiling food. If someone must leave the kitchen for even a short period of time, they should turn off the stove;
  • Check food regularly while cooking and remain in the home while cooking;
  • Use a timer as a reminder that the stove or oven is on;
  • Keep kids and pets away from the cooking area. Enforce a "kid/pet-free zone" and make them stay at least three feet away from the stove;
  • Keep anything flammable-pot holders, oven mitts, wooden utensils, paper or plastic bags, food packaging, and towels or curtains-away from the stove, oven, or any other appliance in the kitchen that generates heat;
  • Clean cooking surfaces on a regular basis to prevent grease buildup;
  • Purchase a fire extinguisher to keep in the kitchen;
  • Contact the local fire department for training on the proper use of extinguishers;
  • Always check the kitchen before going to bed or leaving your home to make sure all stoves, ovens, and small appliances are turned off; and
  • Install a smoke alarm near the kitchen, on each level of the home, near sleeping areas, and inside and outside bedrooms.  Use the test button to check it each month.  Replace batteries at least once a year!

Fire and smoke damage is especially destructive. In many instances your Cape May County property will also suffer from water damage from firefighting efforts. We specialize in fire and water damage restoration; it’s the cornerstone of our business. We have specialized equipment, specific training, and certifications that allow us restore your home to pre-fire condition.

Contact SERVPRO® of Cape May County if you have a fire damage emergency - 609-624-0202 or EMAIL us.

American Red Cross Home Fire Campaign

2/6/2017 (Permalink)

SERVPRO® of Cape May County is a proud supporter of The American Red Cross Home Fire Campaign.

Can your family escape in just 2 minutes? You can keep your family safe with 2 simple steps.

  • Step 1. Practice your 2-minute drill. Make sure your family can safely escape a home fire in under 2 minutes. Use our worksheets to plan and prepare your 2-minute drill today.
  • Step 2. Test your smoke alarms monthly. Make sure you and your family are alerted as soon as a fire is detected. If the smoke alarm isn't working, change the batteries.

Our goal is to help reduce death and injury from home fires. For more information, visit The American Red Cross website. Follow this link for SERVPRO FIRE safety tips.

The American National Red Cross is registered as a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. Contributions to the American National Red Cross are tax-deductible to the extent permitted by law. The American National Red Cross' tax identification number is 53-0196605.