Recent Posts

Happy New Year

12/29/2017 (Permalink)

Before the end of this year, we want you to know that we are very pleased and satisfied with all of our employees for their excellent performance through the year. Also, we want to extend the greetings to our dear clients, the other important part of the engine of our company. Happy New Year to all the people that help us make it "Like it never even happened."

We wish the best to our customers and employees, because you are the most important part of the company. Also to our team work, as a reward for their dedication and effort to deliver a first class service, SERVPRO of Eastern Niagara County wishes you a fabulous New Year to all our customers and employees.

How to prevent frozen pipes

12/29/2017 (Permalink)

Cold temperatures can cause pipes to freeze. Frozen pipes can result in costly repairs to you as a home or business owner. The good news is there are ways to prevent pipes from freezing. Here are some tips for this winter.

Frozen Pipes Can Burst

Frozen pipes are a problem by themselves, because they prevent water flow, but even worse, frozen pipes can eventually burst, causing damage and potential flooding. There are ways to protect your pipes from freezing. These include:

Keep your house warm

If you are leaving for a period of time, make sure that the heat is kept on at your property. You should inform them that the heat can help prevent pipes from freezing, and if pipes freeze and burst, it can cause a lot of water damage to the property and to their possessions. The heat doesn’t have to be kept as high as you normally would keep it if you were home but keeping it set above 50 degrees Fahrenheit at all times is a good idea. This should provide enough heat to keep the pipes warm and to prevent any water inside from freezing.

Open Faucets

When temps hit the freezing level it is a good idea to allow faucets to drip. Allowing the faucet to be open like this will relieve pressure in the pipe. If a pipe freezes, it is actually the pressure that is created between the blockage and the faucet that will cause the pipe to burst. With the faucet open you avoid blockage in the pipes.

Insulation in key

Pipes can be fitted with foam rubber or fiberglass sleeves to help decrease the chances of freezing. This can be an easy solution for pipes that are exposed, but can get expensive if walls, floors or ceilings have to be opened in order to properly insulate the pipe. Additional insulation can also be added to walls and ceilings to keep the pipes warm.

SERVPRO of Eastern Niagara County is here to help : 24 hours/7 days a week : 716-694-7776

Top Causes of Kitchen Fires

12/21/2017 (Permalink)

Kitchen fires are the #1 cause of house fires and injuries to homeowners, so avoiding them is a worthy goal for every household. Taking common-sense precautions can greatly reduce the chance of igniting a cooking fire during meal preparation, and understanding how to avoid these fires is simple and smart. Listed here are several recommendations from the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA).

  1. Cooking oil, a key ingredient for frying and sautéing, is also a prime cause of sudden stove-top fires. Smart cooks heat oils slowly to the desired temperature, then add food gently to reduce the chance of splatter and flare-up. Keeping an appropriately sized lid next to your pan gives you a means to quickly cover the pan and snuff out sudden flames.
  2. Good chefs always stay in the kitchen; unattended cooking is a dangerous gamble. Staying in the kitchen, especially when frying, grilling, broiling or boiling, is a smart and obvious way to avoid an out-of-control fire.
  3. Roasting, simmering and baking foods takes more time. While the likelihood of a fire may seem less, the main culprit is forgetting to check on your meal. Set a timer to remind you to check back every so often, and be sure that any wooden utensils, oven mitts, paper products, dish towels and curtains are moved far away from heat sources.
  4. Early morning and late evening cooking coincides with the time you may be more tired. Staying alert is staying safe, so be sure you’re not too sleepy or distracted by other tasks. Consuming alcohol can be enjoyable when preparing meals, but it is also a risk that should be minimized if not completely avoided.
  5. Fight or flight. There is no concrete answer concerning whether it is better to fight a kitchen fire or immediately leave the room, close the door behind you and call for help. If you’re really unsure, take the safest route and call 911 as soon as you and all others can leave the kitchen.

NFPA studies report that 55 percent of the people who were injured in reported nonfatal home cooking fires during 2005-2009 were injured when they tried to fight the fire themselves. One of every four house fires reported in 2007-2011 started with fat or grease, and one of every three fire injuries resulted from these fires.

Source: NFPA’s Fire Analysis & Research Division

Holiday Blog

12/1/2017 (Permalink)

If you havent noticed, water damage and water emergencies happen any time, even the holidays.  Just take a look at how the film industry incorporates water emergencies into key plot points of holiday movies:

Trading Places:  Dresses as Santa and sopped to the core from pouring rain, Dan Akroyd visits his old families Christmas party with an angry and beaten look.  Team Randolph cleans garments, even after people stuff poached salmon under them.

Home Alone: Drawing on peoples deepest fears, hapless burglar Harry (Joe Pesci) brags that he leaves all the water running when leaving a burgled home in order to flood it.  Water damage is a metaphor for evil to the core.  Tough luck Harry, there is nothing you can do with water in a home we haven't seen and fixed, like it never even happened.

Christmas Vacation:  Cousin Eddie pumps raw sewage and chemicals into the public storm drains outside of the Griswold household, ultimately causing an explosion when accumulated gasses meet the flame of a discarded cigar.  From Day One on the job, our crews are trained to protect our customers and themselves from hazards caused by sewage spills and backups.   Sanitization of the affected area and proper disposal are major concerns.  Don't let a sewage issue stink up your holidays, call us.  We would love to help.

Here are a few more examples of Hollywood celebrating the evil of unwanted water:  In 101 Dalmations a thug flies out a window and into a pool.  He emerges as a human frozen pop.   The final fight scene in Lethal Weapon takes place in a dense shower caused by a broken fire hydrant.  Emerging from the water represents the beginning of new life.  There would be no Gremlins or Gremlins 2 if a glass of water was no spilled on a cute Mogwai causing five to spawn from one.  Water gives life even when not convenient and later in the movie when the Mogwai become gremlins and jump in the pool, Water gives life to evil, as with black mold.

The point of all this is water, the cold and holidays don't really mix.  But just like in the movies, even the most extreme damage from water is only a passing scene when you call SERVPRO of Eastern Niagara County at 716-694-7776

Here's Why Professional Water Removal Is More Effective Than DIY Methods

11/16/2017 (Permalink)

Save Money and Aggravation, Call SERVPRO for Water Damage Problems

After a water emergency that floods a home or business, the last thing that most people want to deal with is a bill for cleaning up the damage. This is what leads many homeowners to attempt water extraction on their own instead of calling a professional. 
 
If you're in need of water removal in Western New York you may be tempted to save money by trying to get rid of the excess water on your own. However, going this route typically has more consequences than benefits and will result in greater losses of time, money, and your possessions in the long run. Here's why calling SERVPRO for professional water removal is a smart move. 
 
Professional water extraction works extremely well. 
While some homeowners resort to opening windows and doors, turning on ceiling fans, and blotting towels around the house, SERVPRO has powerful equipment that ensures efficient and thorough water removal. We're also often able to restore documents, books, furnishings, and electronic devices affected by water damage, plus we'll get your home's humidity back to an appropriate level. 
 
Many water emergencies are hazardous. 
If your house has been flooded with gray or black water, such as that from a natural disaster, backed up sewer line, or a leaky toilet, expert attention to the problem is best. These types of water are risky for untrained persons to handle because it involves disease causing waste and debris. This is the type of material that can't simply be put out with the week's garbage and needs proper and safe disposal.  We're knowledgeable about how to get rid of contaminated waste during water extraction, so there are no lingering health risks to your family or pets. 
 
It's important to consider mold and mildew. 
One reason that so many homeowners who attempt DIY water removal eventually end up calling a pro is unseen damage caused by mold and mildew. While your flooring and possessions may look and feel dry, without proper water extraction and controlling humidity mold and mildew will thrive, cause off odors, and ruin your home's structure along with your possessions and furniture. SERVPRO technicians are skilled at protecting against the growth of mold and mildew and have effective strategies to combat it. 
 
At SERVPRO of Eastern Niagara County , we know how important it is to get your home back in order as quickly as possible. We'll help you mitigate the costs of any water emergency by restoring your possessions and preventing future damage to your home. For more information about our water removal services or to receive a quote, call us 24/7 at (716)694-7776

How to Prevent Water Damage from Rain

11/2/2017 (Permalink)

Western New York is experiencing some rainy days - which could cause major problems if rain water seeps into your home. One of the most common sources of water damage in a home is from rain water. It can enter through leaks in your roof, seeping in from the foundation, or even flooding into your basement. It is important to take the necessary steps to prevent water damage in your home such as:

Checking for proper drainage:

  • inspect your roof thoroughly for structural damage or holes
  • clear your gutters from leaves and other debris that could block the flow of water from draining into the yard

Install or Check Sump Pumps:

  • sump pump are very effective for keeping rainwater out of your house
  • have a professional check your sump pump to insure it is working properly once a year

Check sealant inside and outside foundation

  • make sure the tar sealant covering the inner and outer sides of the foundation are intact

Inspect the slope of your lawn

  • grading is the slope of your lawn and it should always slope away from your home to redirect the rainwater from flooding around the foundations

When you are dealing with storm, flood, and water damage, immediate action is crucial. You should choose the company with storm damage experience and expertise that has the resources and equipment to handle the job. SERVPRO of Eastern Niagara County  can respond immediately to storm and flooding conditions.

5 Causes of water damage in the home:

11/1/2017 (Permalink)

Water will not damage my home I am careful, I do not live in a cold climate my pipes will not burst. Let us examine that claim. Do you have kids, Washing machines, dish washers, Ice makers in your refrigerator, air conditioners, tress on your property, an older home or gutters then you are at risk.

Kids love things they do not understand and they love to try and figure it out with their hands if possible. Water is exceptionally fascinating especially since a great deal of time is spent trying to teach them how to use a toilet and have a sense of personal hygiene. That being said the drains in the sink, bathtub and toilet are an immediate fascination. Watching what happens as water swirls around and slips down into the abyss of the drain. What is even more fascinating is watching what happens as it bubbles up over the rim and begins to flow all over the bathroom. Kids will put many things into a toilet to force it to overflow. Drains will be clogged with all sorts of toys backing up the pipes forcing flooding the bathroom.  

New technologies such as ice makers, dish washers and air conditioners have made our lives very convenient. Constant temperatures to keep us comfortable and ice when we want it for our favorite beverages and a hands free time free way to clean it all up allows us the finer things.  There is a price to be paid for these luxuries.

Sometimes they fail resulting in flooded homes, flooded basements or water damage in the kitchen. Maintaining these appliances is crucial in making sure you check for ever small leaks as they can seep under the floor, water damage in between walls to porous materials can quickly becomes costly. New technological advances in types of hoses and piping techniques can reduce this problem inspect your home regularly and update any older hoses and piping areas to avoid massive water damage to your home.

Air Conditioning units are designed to collect water in a drain and transport it outside. If a blockage occurs your living room can soon become a serious source of water damage. These units are usually put on some sort of wooden structure which can and should be inspected frequently. Should you see your wood floors with water running over them or your carpet is saturated please call a professional as it is already too late to clean up this water damage yourself.

Trees and nature, while many of us like the convenience of the modern world we still want the beauty of the natural one. So you surrounded your property with trees, bushes, shrubs and flowers. Trees are tall, strong, and very resilient many surviving 100’s of years. This is in part to their ability to seek out food and water. The pipes are full of food and water and due to the strength we admire in the branches so to rings true for their roots. Many times trees will break through weak spots in a pipe and drink from the water and soak up the nutrients from the sewage contained within them. The roots will continue through it growing within the pipe itself thus supplying it with a constant food and water source. Roots in a pipe can be a very big problem and a great source of trouble for sewage damage and water damage in and around your home.

Gutters can also cause serious water damage to your roof and attic areas. Many times these are unchecked due to lack of consistent access to these areas of  your  home. When gutters get clogged with leaves, and branches the water will no longer be able to flow down and seeks an alternative path, this is usually onto and through your roof. Once it gets through your roof the water damage will invade your attic and left unnoticed or unchecked can result in mold growth. 

So if you think that you would never have water damage in your home think again. Pipes bursting from the cold is not the only water damages your home. Be on the lookout and if you find something call a professional because you never know how long it has been going on.

 Remember: With any kind of water damage in the home, time is of the essence! Drying the home in three days or less prevents the growth mold.

SERVPRO of Eastern Niagara County is here to help :716-694-7776

Biohazard Clean up

10/12/2017 (Permalink)

Biohazard cleanup is also known as crime scene cleanup or trauma scene cleanup. SERVPRO of Eastern Niagara County's biohazard professionals provide this supportive service for victim’s families. During an emotional period for the customer, SERVPRO biohazard professionals have developed a keen sense of how to interact with the customer by providing a level of service victim's families need in a difficult situation. While the police and other responders may spend limited time with the family members, SERVPRO cleaning professionals work around the family longer, by performing the cleaning and restoration of the scene. By performing the cleaning and restoration, SERVPRO helps the family make a step beyond the tragedy, to hopefully carry on with their lives. Our staff is trained in all facets of property damage restoration, from training at SERVPRO’s Corporate Training Facility to regular IICRC industry certifications, our staff is equipped with the knowledge to restore your property.

SERVPRO of Eastern Niagara County

716-694-7776

What Happens after a Fire

10/2/2017 (Permalink)

Here are some major or minor fire recovery tips for houses and apartments.

A special thank you to the firemen, policemen, industry professionals, lawyers, insurance agents and people who gave us their time, insight and real-life advice.

  • Be safe, be smart.
  • Depending on the damage, the fire department may allow you to take your personal belongings (clothing, - jewelry, important documents). If you remove anything, you may have to fill out a form with the fire department listing each item. You will not be allowed to take certain items (i.e. couches, TVs, computers, appliances) as they may have caused the fire.
  • If your car is burned or very damaged by debris, do not start it or move it. Fire officials will tell you when you can move your car.
  • Ask an on-site fire official for a fire department contact in case of questions after the fire.
  • Ask for the approximate date and time for the initial walk-through of your property. For safety purposes, you MUST- be escorted; this is especially true if there is structural damage.

-http://www.whathappensnow.com/getHelp.cfm?cat=2&sub=2

October is Fire Prevention Month

10/2/2017 (Permalink)

About Fire Safety & PreventionDid you know that if a fire starts in your home, you may have just two minutes to escape?The most effective way to protect yourself and your home from fire is to identify and remove fire hazards. 60 percent of house fire deaths occur in homes with no working smoke alarms. During a home fire, working smoke alarms and a fire escape plan that has been practiced regularly can save lives. Fire Safety Tips -Talk with all household members about a fire escape plan and practice the plan twice a year.-Test smoke alarms once a month, if they're not working, change the batteries.-If a fire occurs in your home, GET OUT, STAY OUT and CALL for help.-Install smoke alarms on every level of your home, inside bedrooms and outside sleeping areas.

Preparing and Preventing a Home Fire - Steps You Can Take Now

-Keep items that can catch on fire at least three feet away from anything that gets hot, such as space heaters.

-Never smoke in bed.

-Talk to your children regularly about the dangers of fire, matches and lighters and keep them out of reach.

-Download the Monster Guard: Prepare for Emergencies mobile game to teach kids about fire safety and other disasters.

-Turn portable heaters off when you leave the room

Smoke Alarms

-Install smoke alarms on every level of your home, inside bedrooms and outside sleeping areas.

-Teach your children what smoke alarms sound like and what to do when they hear one.

-Test smoke alarms once a month, if they're not working, change the batteries.

-Smoke alarms should be replaced every 10 years. Never disable smoke or carbon monoxide alarms.

-Carbon monoxide alarms are not substitutes for smoke alarms. Know the difference between the sound of smoke alarms and carbon monoxide alarms.

Fire Escape Planning

-Ensure that all household members know two ways to escape from every room of your home.

-Make sure everyone knows where to meet outside in case of fire.

-Practice escaping from your home at least twice a year and at different times of the day. Practice waking up to smoke alarms, low crawling and meeting outside. Make sure everyone knows how to call 9-1-1.

-Teach household members to STOP, DROP and ROLL if their clothes should catch on fire.

Cooking Safely

-Stay in the kitchen when frying, grilling or broiling food. If you leave the kitchen, even for a short period of time, turn off the stove.

-Stay in the home while simmering, baking, roasting or boiling food. Check it regularly and use a timer to remind you that food is cooking.

-Keep anything that can catch fire-like pot holders, towels, plastic and clothing- away from the stove.

-Keep pets off cooking surfaces and counter tops to prevent them from knocking things onto the burner.

Caution: Carbon Monoxide Kills -Install carbon monoxide alarms in central locations on every level of your home and outside sleeping areas.-If the carbon monoxide alarm sounds, move quickly to a fresh air location outdoors or by an open window or door. -Never use a generator, grill, camp stove or other gasoline, propane, natural gas or charcoal-burning devices inside a home, garage, basement, crawlspace or any partially enclosed area. Fire Damage Repair and RestorationFires can be especially devastating to your home or business. After the fire trucks leave, your property will likely suffer from not only fire and smoke damage, but also widespread water damage and flooding from firefighting efforts. SERVPRO Franchise Professionals have specialized fire and water damage restoration training and experience to quickly clean up and restore your home to pre-fire condition. They also can remove the pervasive smoke odor and deep-clean soot from upholstery and carpet. Please refer to our Fire Damage Tips - Until Help Arrives Guide and follow these tips to protect yourself and your property.

SERVPRO Franchise Professionals

  • Provide 24/7 Emergency Service
  • Highly Trained Fire and Water Restoration Specialists
  • Faster to Any Size Disaster
  • A Trusted Leader in the Restoration Industry with over 1,650 Franchises
  • Preferred Vendor for Many National and Local Insurance Companies
 

The Fire Damage Restoration Process

SERVPRO Franchise Professionals know just how devastating a fire can be. Fire and water damage can leave your house unsafe and unlivable. They're trained to clean and restore your home with as little disruption as possible. Learn more about the fire damage restoration process.Step1: Emergency ContactStep 2: Inspection and Fire Damage AssessmentStep 3: Immediate Board-Up and Roof Tarp Service (if needed)Step 4: Water Removal and Drying (if water damage is present)Step 5: Removal of Smoke and Soot from All SurfacesStep 6: Cleaning and RepairStep 7: Restoration SERVPRO of Easter Niagara County 716-694-7776