Water damage is one of the most common types of property damage, especially in places like Florida. There are many different types of water damage that require varying mitigation methods, so it’s important to know the severity of the issue before attempting to repair it.
This type of problem is time-sensitive, meaning that it can quickly cause mold and corrosion in your home. Here are some tips on what to do once you’ve found out that your home has water damage.
Know What Type of Water You’re Dealing With
Property damage can be caused by three main types of water: clean, gray, and black. Clean water is usually harmless and comes from rain or condensation. You don’t really need to solicit help for this type of water since it’s not dangerous.
Gray water is slightly dirtier and can come from various types of appliances. You can clean it up yourself so long as you take the necessary safety precautions.
On the other hand, black water should only be removed by a licensed professional. It will be more expensive this way, but this type of water comes from sewage or flooding and carries dangerous contaminants.
If you’re living in a high-risk location like Florida, you need water damage restoration experts to assess the severity of the problem right away to prevent the problem from becoming worse, especially when dealing with grey or black liquids.
Remove Standing Water
You may have standing water, which is water that is not flowing but instead sitting still in a certain area. It’s important that you remove this immediately to avoid severe damage and make room to assess other areas.
Professionals use special vacuums for this process which go around the room and suck up all of the liquid. The amount of time this process takes depends on how big the room is and how much standing water there is.
Assess Ceiling Damage
It’s more important to check for damage on your ceilings because they could potentially collapse. If you are dealing with water damage from your roof or attic this could cause structural damage to your house.
Before assessing other areas, take precaution by dealing with any potential ceiling issues first.
Check for Mold
Mold and mildew can begin growing in less than 24 hours. You must be extremely cautious if you find mold growing because some mold is toxic.
For less severe issues, you can remove whatever material is moldy, put it in a bag, and immediately throw it away. For larger scale problems, make sure no one is going in and out of the area, then call a professional to assess the damage and handle it.
Dry the Problem Areas
Water damage can easily spread if not treated. One of the first and most important steps is to dry the affected areas. This will inhibit the moisture from causing any more harm.
You can do this in smaller sections using fans to circulate air, or you can rent a large humidifier for large areas.
Remove Damaged Materials
Most porous things that are exposed to moisture for extended periods of time will be unsalvageable. Don’t risk spreading moisture and causing mold and mildew to form by trying to save these items.
Throw these materials away immediately and continue dealing with damage in other areas. It may be frustrating to lose your valuables, but you don’t want to run the risk of more damage occurring.
Check Your Insurance
Depending on what your homeowner’s insurance covers, you may be able to file a claim. Of course, you’re more likely to be covered if the damage was caused by an immediate event rather than gradually, but regardless, it’s important to try filing a claim.