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How To Prevent Frozen Pipes This Winter

1/18/2019 (Permalink)

Water Damage How To Prevent Frozen Pipes This Winter Use these preventative measures to prevent frozen pipes in your home this winter.

January is here, and so is the frigid temperatures. Also, it’s the time of year Western New Yorkers like to travel to a warmer climate to escape the cold. If you are planning your winter escape, it is important to take preventative measures to prevent the pipes in your home from freezing. Water damage from a burst pipe can be devastating, and costly. Especially when the water is sitting stagnant in the home for more than 24 hours, this leaves the potential for mold. Here are a few tips to prevent the pipes in your home from freezing.  

  1. Keep the furnace running at 55 degrees-Turning the heat down when you are away from the home for an extended period of time is smart, but be sure the thermostat does NOT go below 55 degrees.
  2. Insulate pipes exposed to outer walls-This gives pipes that are more prone to freezing added protection.
  3. Allow water to flow through pipes by turning on faucets to a slow drip-This keeps water moving consistently through the pipes.
  4. Open cabinets to allow heat from inside the home to help keep pipes warm-The extra air flow will help prevent the pipes from freezing.

Should you come home and find that a pipe is frozen, take immediate action to thaw it. If you experience water damage from a pipe that froze and burst, call the experts at SERVPRO of The Southtowns at (716) 646-6684 to begin the mitigation process.

How to Assemble a Emergency Winter Kit for Your Vehicle

1/3/2019 (Permalink)

General How to Assemble a Emergency Winter Kit for Your Vehicle Having a Emergency Winter Kit in your vehicle will have you prepared for when disaster strikes!

Although December and January have been mild so far in WNY, one thing is for sure, the snow is coming! And while we haven’t seen a lot of the white stuff yet, it is a good idea to prepare for it now. One way of doing that is to keep a Winter Emergency Kit in your car for when disaster strikes!

Here are some things that you will want to keep in your kit. We recommend storing these items in a water proof bin/tot (you can get these at any store) and placing it in your vehicle’s trunk.  If you already have an Emergency Car Kit just add a few additional items and you are good to go!

Winter Emergency Kit Essentials:

  • Blankets, gloves and hats
  • Ice scraper
  • Bag of sand or kitty litter (to help with traction)
  • Extra phone charger
  • Jumper cables
  • Flashlight (and extra batteries)
  • Bottled water
  • Non-perishable food items
  • Multi-too (such as a Swiss Army Knife or a Leatherman Tool)
  • Road flares

As always, you should practice safe driving during the winter months as well. Being prepared for any size disaster is just one more way SERVPRO of The Southtowns is “Here to Help.”

Rain Rain Go Away

12/3/2018 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Rain Rain Go Away A wet weather forecast can lead to water damage in your home. Contact a professional from SERVPRO of The Southtowns immediately.

Increased rain during the fall and early winter seasons in the Buffalo area often causes an increase of water damaged basements due to failed sump pumps and overwhelmed storm drains.

If you discover water damage in your home, the experts at SERVPRO of The Southtowns are Here to Help.

Time is key when it comes to stopping and restoring water damage.

SERVPRO of The Southtowns recommends these helpful tips until help arrives:


  • Remove as much excess water as possible by mopping and blotting.
  • Wipe excess water from wood furniture after removal of lamps and table top items.
  • Place aluminum foil or wood blocks between furniture legs and wet carpeting.


  • Leave wet fabrics in place; dry as soon as possible. Hang furs and leather goods to dry seperatly at room temperature.
  • Leave books, magazines or other colored items on wet carpets or floors.
  • Use TVs or other household appliances while standing on wet carpets or floors, especially not on wet concrete floors.

If you do experience water damage anywhere in your home, please call the professionals at SERVPRO of The Southtowns immediately at 716-646-6684. Time is crucial when dealing with water damage, so do not delay. 

When Time Counts, Choose the Team With the Fastest Response

12/3/2018 (Permalink)

Storm Damage When Time Counts, Choose the Team With the Fastest Response When time is of the essence, call SERVPRO of The Southtowns to make it, "Like it never even happened".

No one plans for a disaster, but when it strikes, time is of the essence to restore and protect your property.

Our team is available 24/7, so when the sump-pump fails at 6pm or a fire strikes at 2am, our team can begin the restoration process immediately.

Once our office is contacted, our team arrives on location within four hours, guaranteed. This allows us to begin cleanup immediately and cut down on restoration costs.

SERVPRO of The Southtowns works with all major insurance companies and has long standing relationships with local adjusters to help the claim process run smoothly.

When the drain backed up at a local high school, the Superintendent of Buildings and Grounds contacted our office and a team was onsite in less then an hour. With a quick response and cooperation between all parties involved, the school was able to open it's doors for classes on schedule.

Storm Damage Specialist in Buffalo, NY

12/3/2018 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Storm Damage Specialist in Buffalo, NY SERVPRO of The Southtowns is ready to help during any storm and water damage.

We're Highly Trained Storm Damage Specialists

As a leader in storm and water damage restoration, SERVPRO of The Southtowns has the specialized training and expertise to restore your home back to its pre-storm condition. Our restoration process puts an emphasis on scientific drying techniques, progress monitoring and documentation.

  • Water Damage Restoration Technician
  • Applied Structural Drying Technicians

We Have the Resources to Handle Storms and Disasters

We can access the resources and personnel of over 1,700 Franchises to handle major storms and disasters. We also have access to special Disaster Recovery Teams strategically located throughout the country to respond to catastrophic storms and events.

Locally Owned Company with National Storm Resources

We live and work in this community too; we might even be neighbors. As a locally owned and operated business, SERVPRO of The Southtowns is close by and ready to respond to your flood or storm damage emergency. We are proud to be an active member of the Buffalo community and want to do our part to make our community the best it can be.

Proper Training Makes A Difference

12/3/2018 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Proper Training Makes A Difference Our Training Supervisor Taylor Braun reviews best practices and techniques with the crew every Friday morning.

Training is something that is very important here at SERVPRO of The Southtowns. We believe that reviewing proper training is somthing that should be done on a regular basis.

The Training Supervisor at SERVPRO of The Southtowns, Taylor Braun, reviews water pumps with us in preparation of the rainy season. This time of year, a high volume of our customers require basement pump out and we have the equipment to perform this service. There are a  number of different types of water pumps available to pump out standing water from one inch to many inches. 

At SERVPRO of The Southtowns we are dedicated to the continuing education of our entire staff, every Friday morning we host an educational seminar for the crew and staff to review equipment use, best practices, new procedures, and upcoming industry changes.

Having a crew that is knowledgeable and confident gives our customers the best service during their times of need.  

We make water damage, "Like it never even happened".

Highly Trained Restoration Technicians to Restore Your Home

12/3/2018 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Highly Trained Restoration Technicians to Restore Your Home Proper training is key when dealing with restoring fire/water damages. It can be the key between restoring vs. replacing.

SERVPRO of The Southtowns is an IICRC firm. The Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) creates the standards for the restoration industry and provides training and certification to restoration companies. IICRC Certified Firms have the right to display the IICRC Certified Logo.

IICRC Certified Firms must

• Present accurate information to consumers and conduct business with honesty and integrity.

• Require a technician on all jobs who has been formally trained and passed all required tests.

• Require a continuing education program to keep technicians up-to-date on the latest changes in the industry.

• Maintain liability insurance to protect all parties in the event of an accident.

• Maintain a written complaint policy and agree to Better Business Bureau or similar arbitration to resolve disputes, and accept the conclusions and recommendations of arbitration.

The IICRC Develops The Standards For The Restoration Industry

The IICRC has been the driving force in establishing the main industry standards and reference guides for professional carpet cleaning, water damage restoration and mold remediation. These IICRC standards take years to develop and require the coordination of experts in the field: manufacturers, industry organizations, insurance professionals, training schools, contractors, and public health professionals.

Every five years, the standards are reviewed and updated. The water damage restoration field changes rapidly with advancements in technology and science, and therefore the standards must evolve to keep pace.

About SERVPRO of The Southtowns

SERVPRO of The Southtowns specializes in the cleanup and restoration of residential and commercial property after a fire, smoke or water damage event. Our staff is highly trained in property damage restoration and we are an IICRC Certified Firm. We believe in continuous training: from initial and ongoing training at SERVPRO’s corporate training facility to regular IICRC-industry certification, rest assured our staff is equipped with the knowledge to restore your property.

Think Twice Before You Plug That Space Heater In

12/3/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Think Twice Before You Plug That Space Heater In Use extra caution this winter season when operating a space heater. Be sure to follow safety regulations to prevent a fire from happening.

It is that time of year when there is a chill in the air and a little extra warmth is needed. However, if not used properly space heaters can be very dangerous. Here are some great space heater safety tips to prevent a fire in your home this winter season.

Electric space heaters are generally more expensive to operate than combustion space heaters, but they are the only unvented space heaters that are safe to operate inside your home. Although electric space heaters avoid indoor air quality concerns, they still pose burn and fire hazards and should be used with caution.

1. Place heater on a hard, level surface

2. Turn heater off when you leave

3. Keep heater 3 ft. from the nearest object

4. Avoid using extension cords

5. Look for heaters with tip over and over heat protection

6. Keep heaters away from water and flammable items such as papers, blankets, and curtains. 

Educating yourself about the safety hazards that come with the improper use of portable heaters will help you achieve better peace of mind as you keep your home warm, comfortable, and fire hazard-free this winter.

Chimney Fires Cause More Damage Then You Think

12/3/2018 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Chimney Fires Cause More Damage Then You Think Chimney fires account for more than $120 million in damage every year.

Did you know chimney fires account for over $120 million in damage every year? As you prepare for colder winter months, be sure to get your chimney cleaned.

If you do experience fire damage in your home, here are some Do and Don't tips: 


  • Limit movement in the home to prevent soot particles from being embedded into upholstery and carpets.
  • Place clean towels or old linens on rugs, upholstery and carpet traffic areas until cleaning is complete.
  • Blow or brush vacuum, loose soot particles from upholstery, drapes, and carpets.
  • Wash house plants on both sides of leaves.
  • Clean and protect chrome on kitchen and bathroom faucets, trim and appliances.
  • Change HVAC filter.
  • Tape double layers of cheesecloth over air registers to prevent redistribution of soot from ducts.


  • Attempt to wash any walls or painted surfaces.
  • Attempt to shampoo carpet or upholstery.
  • Send garments to ordinary dry cleaner. Improper cleaning may set smoke odor.

Why You Should Never Wait For Emergency Service For Your Commercial Property

12/3/2018 (Permalink)

Commercial Why You Should Never Wait For Emergency Service For Your Commercial Property We're always available for your commercial property. Even when the sprinklers go off at 2 am.

Did you know that after a commercial property suffers a loss from fire and/or water damage, only 50% of those companies re-open for business?

That is why we believe that when businesses are disrupted by fire, water, or bio hazard there is no time to waste.  

At our office, we will always provide prompt (usually same day) service to any commercial properties regardless of our current production schedule, even during storm time.  

Additionally, SERVPRO of The Southtowns carries liability insurance well above the industry standards based on feedback from our commercial clients 

What qualifies as "commercial"?:

Schools, Manufacturing, Industrial, Apartment Buildings, Health Care, Offices, Financial Institutions, Hospitality, Retail, Food Services, Government / Municipal, and more.

What does "Storm Time" mean?:

Storm Time is after a major local weather event, such as a cold snap, a flash of heavy rains, or a major snow storm. During these times our office can easily be fielding over 60 new calls for losses per day. During storm time we are "all hands on deck" and the entire company works around the clock. 

So if your commercial property suffers from any fire/water damage, call SERVPRO of The Southtowns at (716) 646-6684.