Recent Posts

Finding a Contractor in Austin & Albert Lea

7/22/2021 (Permalink)

An increase in the number of storm-related claims may lead to an increase in the number of unscrupulous roofers and contractors who are willing to take advantage of homeowners. You need to be cautious when dealing with contractors who offer to repair your home.

Some tips:

  1. Only do business with licensed contractors with good references.
  2. Always request a written, detailed estimate.
  3. Never pay for the work upfront, nor make any payments in cash.
  4. Never sign a contract with spaces left blank.
  5.  What is their business address? If the company has a PO Box or doesn't have a local address, they probably aren't a local company.
  6. Ask about some references for work they have done in this area. Local companies should have plenty of projects you can see in the area.

If you are being asked to sign by a contractor in doubt about anything, don’t be afraid to ask questions. Don’t feel pressured into signing anything. Take time to do your research, and if you are unsure about anything in the agreement, WAIT until you’ve had an opportunity to look it over more carefully and discuss it with your insurance agent or adjuster.

Floods Are Not Always Caused By Rain.

7/16/2021 (Permalink)

Most people will immediately think flooding due to heavy rain. We know that heavy rain cause damage to your home and property, but most often, the water damage we fine are due to a plumbing issue. Damage to an average-sized house can run a homeowner thousands of dollars.

When SERVPRO of Austin & Albert Lea receives a call for a burst pipe or water heater, our responds quickly so they can remove water as fast as possible. Once we’ve removed all the water, we immediately begin the drying process to both personal property and the structure. One of the things we do during the drying process is to set up are dehumidifiers. By removing moisture, we lower humidity levels in the home creating a drier environment which allows evaporation to happen and that helps save building materials such as drywall.
 
As the dehumidifiers work, SERVPRO technicians use extraction devices to dry any carpeting. This allows them to remove more water. Unlike carpet, most carpet pads are inexpensive, so we usually recommend replacing verses attempting to dry them. 
 
If you need our help for any type of water damage, call us at 507-396-6644. Let us be your first line of action to reduce the effects of water damage in your home or business

When Disaster Strikes

7/12/2021 (Permalink)

For business owners, their livelihood depends on the success of their business. When disaster strikes it is important to have a plan of action in place, especially for your business. Disasters that result in business interruption can permanently close nearly 50% of business’ doors forever. Timing is everything. Knowing what to do, who to call, and what to expect in advance is vital to timely mitigation. SERVPRO of Mason City offers a no-cost assessment of your facility to develop an Emergency Ready Profile. When we develop an Emergency Ready Profile for a business, it contains only the most critical information. An Emergency Ready Profile will also establish SERVPRO of Mason City as your preferred disaster mitigation and restoration provider. It contains employee and emergency contacts as well as the line of command for authorizing work to begin (once again, timing is everything). We will compile critical information and facility details such as shutoff valve locations, important areas and building access information, insurance contact Information, and priority contact information in an easy-to-navigate manner available through a web portal, mobile app, or physical copy. Many people question why SERVPRO of Mason City would offer such a service at no cost to businesses. Simply put, we genuinely want to help. We want to make sure you have all of the tools and resources to avoid disasters, but in those unavoidable times when misfortune strikes, we want to be easily accessible to you. We are always “Hero ready, here to help!” We are on call for emergency services 24/7/365.

Note the Dangers of Fireworks!

7/3/2021 (Permalink)

Firework season is among us! They are often used for special events and holidays—most commonly the 4th of July. Fireworks can fill the sky with their beauty, but they cause thousands of burns and eye injuries each year.

What you can do to have a safe 4th of July…

  • BE CAREFUL!
  • Keep a close on children and pets when fireworks are being used.
  • Do not operate fireworks under the influence of alcohol.
  • Always have a bucket of water or fire extinguisher nearby.
  • Dispose of used fireworks by wetting and placing them in a metal trash can away from any building.

SERVPRO of Austin & Albert Lea wants you to have a safe 4th of July. If your home or business suffers fire or smoke damage, contact SERVPRO® of Austin & Albert Lea to help make it “Like it never even happened.”

Three Different Types of Water Damage

6/29/2021 (Permalink)

Water can be classified into three different types of categories. SERVPRO of Austin & Albert Lea has the knowledge and expertise to help you identify which category of water you may be dealing with and will help you take the necessary steps to make it “Like it never even happened.”

Category 1: “Clean Water”

Category 1 water is considered sanitary and can come from sources like a broken water line or a leaking faucet. If left untreated, it can degrade into a category 2 or 3 overtime, which is why it should be mitigated promptly.

Category 2: “Gray Water”

Gray water is contaminated and can cause illnesses. Although it’s not as contaminated as water in category 3, it can still progress to that level, if left untreated.

Category 3: “Black Water”

Blackwater is grossly contaminated, it’s the dirtiest classification of water; it can contain sewage, harsh chemicals, and microbes. This type of water can come from sources such as, flooding or sewage from an overflowing toilet that contains fecal matter.

It’s important to address any kind of water damage immediately. Quick action will not only prevent secondary damage to your home or business, but even more importantly, your health depends on it! Contact SERVPRO of Austin & Albert Lea, we are available 24/7 should you experience water damage!

Know The Dangers When It Comes To Grilling This Summer!

6/21/2021 (Permalink)

Food on the Grill Nothing is better then some delicious grilled food on a nice Summer day!

With the start grilling season finally upon us, here are a few things know to keep you and your family safe.

  •  July is the peak month for grill fires (18%), including both structures, outdoor or unclassified fires, followed by June (15%), May (13%) and August (12%).
  • The grill had not been cleaned in more than one-quarter (29%) of the home grill structure fires.
  • The leading area of origin for structure fires involving grills was an exterior balcony or open porch, and 44 percent of the property damage from grill structure fires resulted from fires that started there.
  • Five of every six grills involved in home fires were fueled by gas (84 percent), while 12 percent used charcoal or another solid fuel.
  • Gas grills were involved in an average of 8,900 home fires per year.  Leaks or breaks were primarily a problem with gas grills.
  • Charcoal or other solid-fueled grills were involved in 1,300 home fires per year.

 Always make sure to watch the grill. It only takes a second to turn a great day into a nightmare!

Duct Cleaning Experts in the Austin & Albert Lea Area.

6/14/2021 (Permalink)

The biggest culprit for poor indoor air quality? Your ventilation system. Inspecting the ductwork in your home or facility should be a priority. Ductwork may be out of sight, out of mind, but it should be given the proper attention. Dirty ducts can circulate one or more of the following:

  • Dust
  • Pollen
  • Odors
  • Dirt and debris
  • Insects or pests
  • Other contaminants

Keeping the HVAC and ductwork clean can potentially extend the lifespan of the equipment by allowing it to work at peak conditions. This may also, help you save money. Duct cleaning may not be necessary. Our professionals will inspect your HVAC system and ductwork and make recommendations about the best way to address any indoor air quality concerns.

To schedule duct cleaning contact SERVPRO of Austin & Albert Lea at (507) 396-6644.

We Recognize Some Critical Steps

6/7/2021 (Permalink)

At SERVPRO we recognize some critical steps in the process of helping a customer. Be it a residential or commercial loss we handle most situations with the same policies and protocols. There are some situations that warrant a custom, one-time approach but consistency is paramount to guarantee the job is done efficiently and effectively. One of the best ways to guarantee consistency is the use of job audits. Audits are done internally and externally and are standard when dealing with program work. When utilizing audits, we can look at DryBook, or any data entry software, and reference information from a job that we haven’t even visited physically and know specifications, scope, property manager, etc. 

Another avenue to explore and set up would be a master service agreement. With a master service agreement, we would have all pertinent information gathered and questions answered before a problem even arises. Let’s say a manager is on a well-deserved vacation and a sewer pipe ruptures at his/her business. Since we’ve already done the work and set up a master service agreement and/or vendor account we are able to reference information immediately. We would know what plumber they use, what employees to call and inform, what the budget is to stop the loss from getting worse, you name it. Basically, a master service agreement is set up to establish peace of mind when the decision-maker/makers are not on the property. 

As I briefly mentioned above, we also have certain criteria to meet and qualify as “program work”. These standards guarantee that when a large commercial job comes in and we accept the job, we can complete the job efficiently. For every level of businesses in relation to square or cubic footage there are certain amounts of machinery and manpower needed to qualify. This eliminates businesses from taking a job outside of what they can handle. These are just a few ways in which SERVPRO establishes the lead in a very competitive industry.

3 Ways to Keep Your Roof Safe

6/2/2021 (Permalink)

3 Simple Steps to keep your roof safe.

  1. Inspect the roof at least twice a year. Make sure you know about potential issues and all of your upkeep options to extend the life of a roof. Do this by having experts perform annual inspections. If you know what to look for, you can do at least one of these inspections yourself.
  2. Trim trees with overhanging branches. Reducing the number of branches and leaves that accumulate on the roof can help to keep drainage systems clear. Tree maintenance can also prevent heavy limbs from falling in the event of high winds or adverse weather conditions.
  3. Clear drainage systems regularly. Water that cannot drain may pool and work its way under roofing materials, resulting in leaks. Make sure that leaves and other debris are not blocking downspouts, drains, or gutters, and that drainage is routed away from the foundation.

A regular maintenance schedule can help property owners address roof damage and wind damage in a timely manner. Keeping an eye on the condition of your roof can extend the life of this part of your building and prevent costly leaks.

Hail Storm Damage

5/25/2021 (Permalink)

Hail stones Hail damage to your home

Hail storms are never a good thing for you and your property. They can smash holes in homes and windows. Unfortunately, the damage does not stop there. While big chunks of ice can break things, the smaller, harder to detect pieces can cause as much if not more damage.  

Luckily, SERVPRO of Austin & Albert Lea are experts in water and storm cleanup. The first thing we do is seal off any holes created by the hail. Then we get to work drying any moist areas using our air movers and dehumidifiers.

Let us ease your mind as we handle any disaster nature throws at you. Call your local SERVPRO of Austin & Albert Lea for your expert fire, water, mold, and storm cleanup needs. 507-396-6644