Recent Posts

What's That Smell in My House?

7/1/2019 (Permalink)

Cleaning What's That Smell in My House? SERVPRO of Mankato/Owatonna can remove offensive odors from your Mankato or Owatonna home.

Smelling something fowl in your home can be alarming and irritating. SERVPRO of Mankato/Owatonna has a few tips for identifying smells and getting rid of them. No matter what you’re smelling in your Mankato or Owatonna home, it is important to put safety first. The smell of smoke, rotten eggs, or dirty socks may be an indicator of dangerous conditions. If you smell smoke, get out of the house and call 911 as it may be a house fire.

In need of fire damage repair? Call SERVPRO of Mankato/Owatonna at 507-200-3700

The smell of rotten eggs may be caused by a sewer or natural gas leak, in which case evacuation should be considered. Gas leaks can also smell like propane, skunk, or a dead animal. Use caution if you smell something like this in your home but know that these fowl smells can have other less serious causes as well. If the smell is faint, it may just be an overflowing trash can or something the dog dragged in. If the odor is very strong, it may be best to leave the home instead of investigating.

If your home has a musty odor, like dirty socks or feet, this may be an indication of a mold problem. Mold can be harmful to your health, so if you smell mold or discover mold in your home it is important to resolve the issue promptly. Mold may not always be easily seen, so smell can be a good way of determining if you are in need of mold remediation.

Whatever the smell may be, SERVPRO of Mankato/Owatonna’s trained professionals will find the source of the odor and determine the best methods to neutralize and eliminate the odor from your home. From musty mold to lingering tobacco smells, we are here to help!

New Fire Separation Requirements in Mankato, MN

6/27/2019 (Permalink)

Fire Damage New Fire Separation Requirements in Mankato, MN Gypsum board separation under stairs.

The City of Mankato has enacted a new ordinance that will require all dwelling units (owner occupied and rental) to have fire separations in certain areas. Garage to house fire separations and a gypsum board under stairs are the main requirements of the ordinance. Garage fires can quickly get out of control, but a fire barrier can be an effective way of stopping the fire long enough for people to escape. For dwellings with attached garages, a fire separation consists of 5/8” type X gypsum board on the garage side of the wall separating the house from the garage. A fire door must also be installed between the garage and the house.

A gypsum board under enclosed basement stairs used for storage can also allow people more time to escape and allow firefighters to enter. Stairs are a common means of escape from basements and are used by firefighters in the home, so it is important for them to remain intact during a fire. Without the gypsum board, stairs can be quickly weakened by a fire enclosed in the space underneath them.

A fire separation is required on walls and ceiling under the stairs in all homes with basements. For newly installed separations, the material must be 5/8” type X gypsum board. All joints must be covered with tape and at least one layer of joint compound. Existing separations must be gypsum board in good condition with joints covered. An alternative method for under stair protection may be a sprinkler head taken off the domestic water supply.

Who Should I Use?

6/17/2019 (Permalink)

Why SERVPRO Who Should I Use? SERVPRO of Mankato/Owatonna

Emergency situations usually call for quick reaction. In cases where a home or business structure in Steele County is being compromised by unhealthy and/or unsafe conditions, we are the-fast-response you need to get relief.  Chaotic situations can be handled or endured in an orderly fashion with professionals and the right tools applied. When you must choose your clean-up/restoration specialist, you are likely considering a few important things:

  • Convenient location
  • 24/7 availability
  • Professionalism
  • Efficiency
  • Honesty
  • Experience
  • Latest equipment

SERVPRO is the answer.

In a problematic and possibly chaotic situation, remember, we’re here to help.  SERVPRO of Mankato/Owatonna are business owners, homeowners and renters just like you so we understand the initial needs. Our promise to you is to provide the same quality and integrity based service that we, as your neighbor, may also need in the future.

Tips to Stay Safe During a Storm

6/17/2019 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Tips to Stay Safe During a Storm SERVPRO of Mankato/Owatonna

Floods in Mankato and Owatonna

Floods are the most common natural disaster in the U.S.  Flooding can happen near major bodies of water, but also inland.

Floods can develop slowly or quickly. Floods that come with no warning are known as flash floods.


  • Come from rain, snow, hurricanes, tornadoes, and storm surges
  • Overflows of dams or other water systems
  • Can cause power or water outages
  • Damage buildings
  • Create landslides
  • Make roads impassable
  • Sweep away people, animals, or cars

If you are in a flood in Mankato or Owatonna:

  • If you have a warning, get to a safe place
  • Don’t drive around barricades
  • Don’t walk, swim, or drive through flood waters. SERVPRO of Mankato/Owatonna likes the warning, “Turn around! Don’t Drown!”
  • 6 inches of moving water can knock a person down. 12 inches of moving water can sweep a car away
  • Stay off bridges over fast-moving water. The water can wash bridges away
  • If your car is trapped in quickly-moving water, stay inside. If the water rises inside the vehicle, climb onto the roof
  • If you are trapped in a building, go to the highest level. Do NOT climb into a closed attic. Floodwater can trap you. Go to the roof only if there is no other escape


Why SERVPRO is The Best Choice For Your Waseca Home

6/6/2019 (Permalink)

Why SERVPRO Why SERVPRO is The Best Choice For Your Waseca Home SERVPRO of Mankato/Owatonna


SERVPRO opened in 1967 in Sacramento, California. Ted Isaacson, the owner, sold his first Franchise in 1969.  SERVPRO headquarters moved to Gallatin, Tennessee in 1988. Now it has over 1700 Franchises in the United States and Canada.

What does SERVPRO do?

SERVPRO provides:

  • residential & commercial cleanup of:
    • water/ flood damage
    • fire damage
    • storm damage
  • mold remediation
  • restoration

SERVPRO of Mankato/Owatonna performs these specialties, including:

  • document restoration
  • electronics restoration
  • dry cleaning
  • reconstruction
  • biohazard cleanup
  • duct cleaning

SERVPRO works directly with most insurance companies, and is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Why SERVPRO of Mankato/Owatonna?  Each franchise is an individually owned and operated company. People who work for SERVPRO of Mankato/Owatonna live in the area.  Additionally, it has advanced expertise in water restoration along with specialized equipment in water removal and in advanced drying equipment. 

Technicians at SERVPRO of Mankato/Owatonna have extra training and certification in water restoration. The technicians document every step. You will know exactly what SERVPRO did, and how the process worked. 

We are proud to serve our local communities:

  • Mankato
  • Owatonna
  • North Mankato
  • Waseca
  • Eagle Lake
  • Mapleton
  • New Richland
  • Ellendale
  • Amboy
  • Pemberton

Storm Evacuation with Disabilities in Owatonna

6/6/2019 (Permalink)

Storm Damage Storm Evacuation with Disabilities in Owatonna SERVPRO of Mankato/Owatonna

Storm Damage & Evacuation in Owatonna and Mankato

People with disabilities may need to pack more during an evacuation.

SERVPRO of Mankato/Owatonna has these tips:

Plan for backup if you have your own car. A storm or flood may damage your car.

Before an emergency, check with your healthcare provider to understand these things:

  • Where should I go if I need medical care?
  • Where can I get medical supplies?
  • How I do get accessible transportation?
  • Does the facility have disability ramp access?

Bring with you:

  • Written contact list
  • Medical alert tags/bracelets
  • Copies of medical insurance and Medicare cards
  • List of all medications, dosages, and allergies
  • Style & serial number of medical devices
  • Supply of prescription medications
  • Supply of medical equipment
  • Extra battery for a power wheelchair
  • Any cushions or padding
  • Wheelchairs, canes, braces, etc.

Storm damage makes life more difficult for service animals too.

For people who have service animals in Owatonna and Mankato:

Pack extra food,  water, & other supplies for the service animal

  • Tell emergency responders that your service animal travels with you
  • Shelters and other buildings may not refuse entry to a service animal


Fires From Arson Can Not Be Ignored

6/5/2019 (Permalink)

Fire Damage Fires From Arson Can Not Be Ignored Prevent Fires in Blue Earth County

SERVPRO of Mankato/Owatonna wants you to be aware of the causes of fire damage and fire injuries so that you can help prevent them.

Top Causes of Fires in Blue Earth County:

  • Arson & intentional fires. An “intentional fire” is one that is not set to cause harm, but it gets out of control.  Arson is a fire that is set to cause harm. Most of the time, arson and intentional fires are set outside. Deaths, injuries, and fire damage usually happen indoors
  • Candles-SERVPRO of Mankato/Owatonna has more info here.
  • Kitchen fires are the leading cause of home fire injuries and home fire damage
  • Use all electrical equipment according to the directions
  • Heating equipment is the second most common cause of deaths in home fires
  • December, January, and February are the months that have the most home heating fires
  • Cigarettes, cigars, pipes, and other smoking materials are the biggest cause of fire deaths in the U.S. Think of preventing tragedy when explaining why to quit smoking
  • Children should never be left alone with matches, lighters, candles, or other dangerous materials. Children playing with fire cause hundreds of deaths and injuries every year

Please pay attention to fire safety. While we can help to restore your home or office, prevention and family safety should always come first. Share this blog with a friend who might want to learn more about fire prevention.


Tips To Minimize Water Damage to Your Owatonna Home or Business

6/5/2019 (Permalink)

Water Damage Tips To Minimize Water Damage to Your Owatonna Home or Business Minimize Water Damage In Owatonna

If your home or business in Owatonna has water damage, you can do some things before help arrives.

Make sure that the building or home is safe.

SERVPRO of Mankato/Owatonna Wants You to Remember:

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

SERVPRO of Mankato/Owatonna 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



Flooded Basement in Your Mankato Home? Act Fast to Prevent Further Damage and Hazards!

6/3/2019 (Permalink)

Water Damage Flooded Basement in Your Mankato Home? Act Fast to Prevent Further Damage and Hazards! SERVPRO of Mankato/Owatonna is here to help with your flooded basement in Mankato, Owatonna, Eagle Lake, Amboy, Pemberton, or Waseca.

The dreaded basement flood. We all want to pretend those three inches of water aren’t there and that the incident never even happened, but the longer you wait, the bigger the problem can become. Within just the few minutes it takes you to wrap your head around what just happened, water is absorbed into your walls, floors, upholstery, and belongings. Furniture finishes may bleed, causing permanent staining on carpets, and photographs, books, and other paper goods start to swell and warp. In just the next 24 hours, drywall begins to swell and break down, furniture begins to swell and crack, a musty odor appears, and more.

Ignoring the problem for even more than just 48 hours may cause mold and mildew to grow and spread (luckily, for those who do wait, SERVPRO’s highly trained technicians can be your best friend in mold mitigation!). Between 48 hours and 1 week, your doors, windows, and studs swell and warp, metal begins to rust and corrode, paint begins to blister, wood flooring swells and warps, and serious biohazard contamination is possible. Waiting longer than 1 week increases restoration time and cost dramatically, and structural safety, mold growth, and biohazard contaminants pose serious risks to you and your family. Always keep safety in mind first, and make sure to evacuate when necessary.

Have A Water Damage Emergency? Call (507) 200-3700

Since SERVPRO of Mankato / Owatonna is typically on-site within four hours, calling right away can prevent some of this damage. While you wait for that bright green truck to arrive, there are a few things you can do if you have determined it is safe to remain in the house. Keep in mind that electrical and “slip and fall” hazards are some of the most prevalent concerns, and that wet materials can be very heavy. Only do activities that are safe for you to perform.

What To Do When Your Basement Floods

  • Remove excess water by mopping and blotting.
  • Wipe excess water from wood furniture after removal of lamps and tabletop items.
  • Remove and prop wet upholstery and cushions.
  • Place aluminum foil or wood blocks between furniture legs and wet carpeting.
  • Turn air conditioning on for maximum drying in summer.
  • Remove colored rugs from wet carpeting.
  • Remove art objects to a safe, dry place.
  • Gather loose items from floors.

What NOT To Do When Your Basement Floods

  • Don't leave wet fabrics in place. Hang furs and leather goods.
  • Don't leave books, magazines or other colored items on wet carpet or floors.
  • Don't use your household vacuum to remove water.
  • Don't use television or other household appliances.
  • Don't turn on ceiling fixtures if ceiling is wet, and keep out of rooms where ceilings are sagging.

Basement floods can really put a damper on things, but don’t let it take control of your life, and don’t wait to get help! Instead of waiting and pretending it never even happened, let SERVPRO of Mankato / Owatonna restore your home so it really is "Like it never even happened."

Mold In Drywall / Remediation and the EPA In Mankato and Eagle Lake

5/9/2019 (Permalink)

Commercial Mold In Drywall / Remediation and the EPA In Mankato and Eagle Lake Don't Let Mold Catch You Unawares

Even a tiny bit of moisture can lead to mold growing in drywall.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) ruled that only licensed professionals can clean any surface that has more than 10 square feet of mold. The EPA cannot know how you take care of your home or business, but you will need an inspection if you want to sell. You might not see all of the mold. The sooner you get rid of mold, the less damage it can cause.

SERVPRO of Mankato/Owatonna is licensed in mold remediation.

Mold remediation means getting rid of the mold spores that become mold as well as fixing the root cause of the dampness.

Mold can:

  • start growing on a damp surface within 24 hours
  • destroy the materials they grow on
  • spread and destroy adjacent materials
  • grow from tiny spores that travel through the air

SERVPRO of Mankato/Owatonna can:

  • remove drywall
  • disinfect certain surfaces
  • find the source of moisture
  • stop the moisture problem