Recent Posts


9/26/2022 (Permalink)

The driving force behind SERVPRO Restoration Services is offering quality work and going above and beyond what is expected from our customers.  We rely on our reputation to bring us the work we need to maintain a strong momentum throughout the day, week, month, and year.  When the phone rings, we need to be ready to take on any size disaster, even when the caller is an owner or management at a local business or franchise serving the community, as we do, in their own way. 

                Commercial properties can range in size and extent of damage, and sometimes the work that needs to be performed is not comparable to some residential jobs.  However, there are times when a commercial structure needs all our attention, and sometimes even more.  That is why a SERVPRO franchise needs to have open communication with neighboring franchises and connections to teams structured through the corporate level that are prepared to take on high stakes, high-demand jobs that a locally owned and operated franchise might not have the assets and ability to handle. 

                SERVPRO has designed its services to be open and flexible to take on any task, no matter what size the damage or structure is.  Our franchises in Mason City and Austin and Albert Lea are prepared and have been for quite some time, to take on “the big one” whenever that job appears.  We have connections to a Storm Team, a Large Loss Team, and an Extreme Team that can help get us what we need to produce quality work in a timely fashion at any size disaster.  This is what makes being a SERVPRO franchise better; our commitment to finding a way to address fire, water, sewer backups, mold, and several other losses in a way that will benefit each party involved.  When catastrophe strikes, SERVPRO of Mason City, Austin, and Albert Lea will find a way to get your business or property back to normal and exceed your expectations.  Let us help you in your time of need to make it “Like it never even happened.”  We are just a call away at 507-396-6644. 

SERVPRO of Austin & Albert Lea is independently owned and operated.

Ease your Burden when Disaster Happens in Austin & Albert Lea

7/29/2022 (Permalink)

When disaster strikes…

For many, your home in Austin & Albert Lea represents a lifetime of hard work and a place where roots are important. It is where the family gathers, and where your most endearing and important memories are made. When a disaster strikes; whether it be fire, storm, mold, or other water damage/flooding, it will likely be one of the most traumatic experiences of your life. When these things happen and stress is high call us. Our professionalism and rapid response time, as well as our nonintrusive clean-up and exit, should do much to ease the burden you are bearing. SERVPRO of Austin & Albert Lea really does want to help you carry the load.

…we’ll be there to ease your burden.

Sharing a load to SERVPRO of Austin & Albert Lea means our work makes your situation more bearable. Twenty-four hours a day/seven days a week we are on call with equipment that is up-to-date, and people who are professional and efficient. Our goal is to keep you moving forward with as little worry as possible in Austin & Albert Lea. Please contact us online or at (507) 396-6644.

Austin & Albert Lea Area Businesses Rely On Us for Proactive Cleaning and Sanitization Services!

7/29/2022 (Permalink)

We Are Specialty Trained

We are living in historic times. Keeping our businesses and homes disinfected and sanitized has never been more critical to protecting our health and welfare. SERVPRO® of Austin & Albert Lea wants Austin commercial businesses and homeowners to know that we have the specialty training and years of experience dealing with biological pathogens - including strains of coronavirus similar to the new coronavirus, COVID-19. Our technicians are required to attend initial, demanding training and continuing education courses to stay current on technological advances and industry standards.

We Use EPA-approved Products

The national Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), recommends the use of a labeled, EPA-approved, hospital-grade disinfectant with claims for use on organisms similar to COVID-19. The CDC also recommends that all high-touch surfaces be routinely cleaned and disinfected as COVID-19 can remain on surfaces for up to three hours depending on the surface type. 

Call For a Proactive Cleaning Today

When your facility or home requires cleaning and disinfecting outside the scope of a routine janitorial service, we want to help. We are on call 24 hours a day and can be on-site within four hours of your first call to us. SERVPRO® of Austin & Albert Lea is also equipped to respond to any fire or water emergency in Austin. Call us today at 507-396-6644. We’ll take care of all of your emergency cleaning needs “Like it never even happened.”

SERVPRO® of Austin & Albert Lea is Independently Owned and Operated.

Things to do for Water Damage until Help Arrives in Austin & Albert Lea

7/29/2022 (Permalink)

If your home or business in Austin & Albert Lea has water damage, you can do some things before help arrives.

Make sure that the building or home is safe.

SERVPRO of Austin & Albert Lea Wants You to Remember:

  • Waterlogged materials are very heavy
  • Wet surfaces are slippery
  • Make sure electrical power is off before you handle devices
  • Make sure you are standing in the dry area before you turn on the electric power

SERVPRO of Austin & Albert Lea suggests that you:

  • Remove excess water with mops and/or towels
  • Wipe water from wood furniture or other items
  • Remove wet cushions. Prop them upright to dry
  • Hang up rugs to dry
  • Place foil or blocks between furniture and wet carpeting
  • Turn on dehumidifiers or air-conditioning if it is safe
  • Move colored items from wet carpeting
  • Move artwork to a safe, dry place
  • Move loose items from the floor or counters
  • Start drying items ASAP
  • Remember that mold starts growing within 24 hours
  • Stay away from rooms that have sagging ceilings

If disaster strikes your home, call us 24 hours a day, 7 days a week at 507-396-6644. 

SERVPRO® of Austin & Albert Lea is Independently Owned and Operated.


Smoke Detectors can Save Lives in Austin & Albert Lea

7/29/2022 (Permalink)

Fire spreads fast once it is started so SERVPRO of Austin & Albert Lea wants to remind you that smoke detectors (smoke alarms) can help save lives in your Austin & Albert Lea home. An alarm alerts you that danger is presently giving you time to get out.

SERVPRO of Austin & Albert Lea wants you to remember:

  • Closed doors can slow the spread of smoke, heat, and fire.  That is good for reducing smoke damage and fire damage. That is also why you should have a smoke alarm in every sleeping room in the home
  • Install smoke alarms on every level of the home
  • Large homes might need extra smoke alarms
  • Some companies make alarms that are interconnected. When one sounds, they all sound
  • Do not turn off smoke detectors when cooking
  • Test the smoke alarms at least once a month.  There is a test button on the alarm
  • When the alarm sounds, get everyone outside and stay outside
  • Replace all smoke alarms every 10 years

If your Austin & Albert Lea home is not properly protected by a smoke detector, please install one. If you experience a fire, immediately vacate the home and then contact your fire department once you are outside the home. For fire clean-up or for more information please call us at 507-396-6644. 

SERVPRO of Austin & Albert Lea is independently owned and operated. 


A force to be reckoned with.

5/10/2022 (Permalink)

Mother nature. She is powerful. It doesn’t matter what you have planned for the day, she calls the shots. With little to no warning, she can bring floods, fires, tornadoes, hurricanes, and blizzards. Over the last 5 years, there have been over $742.1 billion in damages. 2021 was a record-breaking year, and there has been an increasing trend in high-cost disasters. The aftermath of catastrophic weather events can be overwhelming. It is important to keep safety in mind. There are many risks involved with attempting to regain access to your property after a major storm event. The property and the surrounding areas have to be deemed safe from downed wires, live electricity, contaminated water, and structural hazards. After safely regaining access to your property, it is important to board up openings and tarp roofs to prevent further damage. Turning off the water in the event an internal water leak is indicated will also help prevent any further internal or structural damages. SERVPRO of Austin and Albert Lea is ready to respond to our community in their time of need, offering emergency storm response services. After SERVPRO is dispatched to your location, we provide a scope of work for your home or business and begin to execute a plan to get your home or business back to preloss condition. We expertly extract excess water using pumps and our extraction equipment. Specialized drying equipment and dehumidification begin to take place to help stabilize the moisture in the environment. We use expert drying science and thorough documentation and monitoring to execute the restoration process quickly and safely, making it “Like it never even happened.”

What about water damage?

5/10/2022 (Permalink)

Water damage can start to show in one hour. That’s why it’s important to remove as much water and moisture as you can in a flooded bathroom, as quickly as you can. It’s vital that you tackle water damage quickly before damp and mold issues occur. Signs of water damage include:
– A water damaged ceiling – look all around the room, including the ceiling and walls underneath the bathroom for damp or discoloration.
– Laminate floor water damage – check out the floor covering if you have one.
– Water damaged wall – look all around for damp or discoloration.
– Water damaged skirting boards – wood will warp and eventually rot and crumble if the room isn’t properly dried.

If you detect water damage in your home, the damage may have gone deeper into your home’s substructure. Don’t worry – contact a professional who knows how to deal with water damage and be sure to take photos when you discover the damage, in case you need to claim on your home insurance.  

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Virus vs Bacteria

5/6/2022 (Permalink)

Germs are everywhere. What exactly is a “germ”? A germ can be any microorganism but usually refers to those causing disease. The most common germs humans come into contact with are bacteria, viruses, fungi, and protozoa. While good hand washing and clean, healthy living can help mitigate some of the damages done by bad germs, it is important to know what kind of germ is affecting you so that you can take appropriate actions. Bacteria and viruses both often lead to infections within the human body.

Bacterial infections are when a single-celled organism finds nutrients from its environment. Often times the environment bacteria settle in can be our bodies. Bacteria finding a home within our bodies can lead to things like cavities, urinary tract infections, ear infections, or even strep throat. Bacteria can often be fought with antibiotics. Using antibiotics too unnecessarily or leaving a dose of antibiotics incomplete can have adverse effects, however. As bacteria breed and multiply, it is Darwinism at its finest. Only the strong survive the antibiotics. Leaving antibiotics unfinished allows the strongest ones left behind ready to rage battle, or even catch a ride to the next flourishing environment.

Viral infections, however, work a little differently. Viruses are hardly even full cells, made mostly of genetic material. Viruses, unlike bacteria, can only live for a short time without their host, as they need to use the structure of their host to reproduce and live. Hosts can be anything living. A person, animal, or even a plant can carry a virus. Viruses typically cause illness in the host. Viruses are not usually treated with antibiotics, as they simply just aren’t as effective. Some anti-viral drugs have been developed against small groups or specific strains.

Germs are prevalent everywhere but can easily be transmitted directly from one to another through saliva, sweat, blood, aerosolized in the air, or at high touchpoints in public places. The best way to stop the spread of germs is to wash your hands regularly with warm soap and water, cough, or sneeze into your arm instead of your hand, sanitize your hands when able to, and STAY HOME WHEN YOU ARE SICK. If soap and water are not available, you can use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol. While times may be becoming more and more uncertain, one thing biologists know is that following those basic rules will help slow the spread of diseases caused by germs.

At SERVPRO of Austin and Albert Lea, we have undergone particular training to handle dangerous microorganisms, blood-born pathogens, and many other situations that may pose risk to a bystander. Your safety, health, and wellness are of utmost importance to us. Don’t risk it by attempting to clean up a situation that warrants professionals. 

Top 5 Spring Cleaning Tips for 2022

4/29/2022 (Permalink)

1. Make a Schedule

Scope out your home: What areas need the most work? Where do you skip during routine cleaning? Those are the best places to start. Regardless of where you start, having a plan will keep you focused on the task at hand. Just go room by room.

2. De-clutter

Studies show that a disorganized home adds to your stress level. It signals to your brain that work isn’t done.

The scientific implications of inhaling dust, combined with the stress of coming back to a cluttered workspace, can take a toll. Since we’re all spending more time at home and in our home offices specifically, keeping a neat workspace is more important than ever.

Set aside some time to:

  • Dust and organize your office
  • Look through that dreaded junk drawer (and desk drawers!)
  • Organize your closets

3. Use a HEPA Vacuum

You can remove more than just dust build-up when you vacuum. A high-quality HEPA vacuum is one of the best spring cleaning supplies to arm yourself with. They catch tiny airborne particles you can’t see but can stir up allergy symptoms. They trap things like pet dander, allergens, and other household particles.

You’ll see a HEPA vacuum suggestion on just about every spring house cleaning list. Miele vacuums are known for their long-lasting designs (7-year warranties!), powerful suction, and sealed filtration systems. They’re ideal options for allergy sufferers.

If you don’t have a HEPA vacuum, look for a vacuum with attachments like dusting brushes, crevice tools, and hoses that can be used to clean more than just your floor. These tools make it simple to clean ceiling fans, cobwebs in corners, pillows, and tight spaces like behind furniture. Be sure to move your furniture too (or at least vacuum under it). Arm yourself with a good HEPA vacuum, and you’ll enjoy a healthy, clean home all of the spring season.

4. Think Green When You Spring Clean

You want to start spring off on a clean note, so don’t expose yourself to chemicals and toxins. A steam cleaner is one of the best green products for spring cleaning. It can be used to clean your microwave, tile, hard floors, kitchen appliances, bathrooms, and even outdoor areas.

Since steam cleaners only use hot water vapor, they’re a 100% natural and chemical-free cleaning solution.

If you don’t have a steam cleaner, one of the best natural combinations for cleaning is white distilled vinegar, baking soda, and water. These ingredients are affordable, non-toxic, and have worked for ages when it comes to cleaning. Learn how to make your own green cleaning solutions in our step-by-step guide.

5. Always Work from Top to Bottom

When you think about how to spring clean your home, it’s important to start from the ceiling down. This will force debris downward and keep you from having to re-dust or re-clean your space. If you have a vacuum with an extension hose, use it to get cobwebs and dust from your ceilings and fans first.

Then dust your furniture and other items before vacuuming all the dust and debris off your floors. It will save you time.

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What to Say When Tragedy Strikes

4/25/2022 (Permalink)

Most of us have a hard time knowing what to say when someone has experienced a great tragedy. As Americans, we aren’t that good at grief, loss, and mourning. On the other hand, we’re really good at hope, optimism, and resilience, and at seeing the “silver lining.” But all too often, our words of comfort, born out of compassion, actually hurt those we are trying to help. So here are some tips from a reluctant expert in loss, for people who are trying to comfort those who are in the midst of tragedy.

1) Don’t say any sentence that starts with the words, “At least…” As in, “At least you’re still alive… At least you have insurance … At least you saved a few things…” No, emphatically no. Believe me, “At least…” is one of the worst things you can hear at a time like this. The person who has had a great loss is trying to understand what they’ve lost, to somehow take in the enormity of the situation. Trying to make them feel grateful in the midst of tragedy is not compassionate. I beg of you if you find yourself saying, “At least…” just stop right there.

2) Don’t say, “It’s just stuff.” Suddenly losing a lifetime of possessions is a devastating experience. You have no idea how hurtful and infuriating it is to have someone who did not lose everything wax philosophical about how great it is to “clear out and start over.” So please do not ever, ever say “It’s just stuff.” I found it much more comforting when people said, “I’m so sorry. I can’t imagine what this must be like for you.”

3) Avoid making it a discussion of faith. In times of great loss, faith is often questioned. Your whole world has just been blown apart, and you may not be so sure about God’s role in any of it. So even if you attend the same church, practice the same faith, or feel like you’re pretty sure of their religious beliefs, try not to go there when you’re comforting someone. It may only make them feel worse about what’s happening.

4) Don’t talk about the “silver lining.” This is a tough one. When you’re in the midst of tragedy, death, or great loss, you really, really do not want someone to take your hand and tell you how you’re going to come out of this stronger, better, etc. It’s important to let that person have their own feelings; don’t tell them how to feel, even unintentionally.

5) Don’t remain silent. Many of us struggle with what to say or worry that we’ll say the wrong thing, so we don’t say anything. This is awkward and unsettling for someone who’s experiencing great loss. You know they know, and you’re waiting for them to say something, and then they don’t, and it makes everything worse. So then what do you say?

6) Say just two things: “I’m so, so sorry. How I can help?” That’s all there is to say – then just BE with them. Hold their hand and cry with them. Bring them food and blankets and gift cards and kleenex and listen, really listen to them when they are telling you just how broken they feel. Just be there.

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