Whether a pipe burst while you were on vacation or a hurricane hit your city hard, you hate water damage in your home. Now what?
The truth is that many people aren’t prepared for the water damage cleanup process, which means the process is delayed.
Unfortunately, every minute you can’t get in and fix the issues caused by water damage is another minute that your problems worsen.
That means you should understand what the cleanup process entails sooner rather than later and generate a plan for tackling cleanup and renovation now.
How Home Restoration Works
Whether your water damage takes the form of a drip through the roof or a burst pipe in your foundation, you should call restoration professionals who specialize in water damage, like Service Master Restore.
What you see on the surface is only a small portion of the damage water has done to your home; it’s possible that behind the paint, the damage is even worse.
Professionals know how to assess the extent of the damage, and they have the tools to take immediate action in stopping the cause of the damage and restoring your home to its previous condition.
Typically, restoration follows these six steps:
This is the first thing professionals do upon entering a property with water damage. First, they will ascertain the cause of the damage. Then, they will use special moisture-measuring tools and instruments to understand how and when certain parts of your home need to be dried.
If the cause of the water damage has not been fixed, professionals will endeavor to rectify this. Then, they will try to prevent further damage with drying equipment like dehumidifiers, which remove moisture and thwart the growth of destructive mold.
Professionals will then remove any standing water in your home with special shop vacuums. This is an excellent example of why you need to bring in the pros: You don’t have access to the right kind of wet-vac for this job, and fans, brooms and mops simply won’t do a good enough job.
Drying and Containment
Once the air is dry and standing water is sucked up, professionals will install air movers at strategic points in your home.
This will work to dry critical elements of your home, like walls and baseboards. They might also lay down mats that draw water from carpets and hardwood floors. Usually, during this phase, professionals will seal off areas of the home that are not water damaged, to prevent moisture from blowing into these uncontaminated areas.
It’s unlikely that professionals will linger in your home to watch the water dry. However, they will return periodically to monitor the progress and make changes to the strategy as necessary. It’s possible that pros will work room by room, so the monitoring process will include transferring tools and equipment from a dry area to a wet one.
Finally, once the threat of further damage is gone and the home is sufficiently dried out, professionals can begin the lengthy process of repairing the damage. Sometimes, restoration professionals will target structural issues and leave it to you to finish the job with cosmetic repairs, but you can find service providers to take you all the way to a finished, damage-free home.
How to Facilitate This Process
Good home maintenance will help you avoid the disasters that cause water damage. For instance, if you are inspecting your roof for cracks or holes, cleaning your gutters, servicing your wet appliances and taking good care of your plumbing, it’s likely that your home will succumb to water damage only due to “acts of God.”
Because you can’t predict a tornado, earthquake, flood or hurricane — and you especially can’t predict if or how a natural disaster like these will affect your property — there isn’t much you can do to prepare for them.
At all times, you should be sure your most important items are safe from any kind of damage. For example, important documents like birth certificates and social security cards should be kept in fireproof, waterproof safes. You might also place valuable jewelry or small heirlooms in your safe.
Additionally, you should try to organize your home so hazardous items don’t get in the way during a crisis. Electrical items, especially, should be kept higher up in your home, either in upper cabinets or on upper stories, where they aren’t likely to be damaged or cause greater danger in a water-damaged room.
The safer and healthier your home is to begin with, the faster and easier the restoration process will be. Water damage isn’t fun for anyone, but when you trust professionals to help you, your home should be back to normal in no time.