Water damage a common occurrence
According to statistics, every day 14000 Americans suffer from incidents, which result in some form of water damage. The insurance industry pays out $2.5 billion dollars per year in water damage repairs, and mold removal costs. Most water damage is caused by large volumes of water discharged into the home either by natural disasters or by leaks in plumbing or appliance inlet or discharge pipes.
It could be worse than it looks
Flooding can cause a lot more damage than is initially apparent. Often not seen is the damage to substructure and walls. These structures often include components of drywall, metal, plaster wood and cement, which are likely to have suffered water damage and may decay over time. It is crucial that all damage is properly assessed, and repaired because if it is not it could compromise the integrity of the structure.
Even low levels of moisture left behind in the wall or floor can at the very least cause bad odors or mold. Damp areas are breeding grounds for bacteria and mold; both of which can cause serious health problems. Mould will start to grow in the presence of moisture in twenty-four to forty-eight hours. Once it is widespread it will have to be treated by a professional mold decontamination team.
Ventilation is the best defense against the growth of mold so as soon as flooding is detected, windows should be opened and wherever possible fans used to keep the air moving. The homeowner should immediately inform their insurers and call on the services of a company that specializes in water extraction and damage restoration. These organizations have the expertise and the equipment to remove the water and to dry the area out.
Who do you trust?
There are no governing bodies in the United States that dictate standards for restoration and cleaning but there are two certifying bodies. The Institute for Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) sets the standards for the training of technicians in the inspection, restoration, and cleaning of water damaged areas. IICRC certified technicians have been trained to identify the source of the damp, evaluate contaminants and remove them. They will ensure that the area is properly dried to prevent re-growth of mold, and will restore the area to the condition it was in prior to the flood incident.
I’ve had the fortune to work with the guys at Just Floods and they took care of everything that needed to be taken care of in a fast, clean and professional matter.
To prevent mold from taking hold, the area must be completely dried out within forty-eight hours. The longer the water stands around the worse the contamination. Highly contaminated water can result in aggressive removal, which may result in the destruction of carpets and soft furnishing.
Some materials such as drywall, wet wall insulation, and carpet padding will have to be discarded. All other salvageable materials should be thoroughly cleaned and should not be reused until thoroughly dried. A water restoration professional should be consulted for advice before re-using any materials. Reusing materials, which contain molds can be highly detrimental to the health of the occupants of the building.
Attempts by householders to remove the damp themselves without the input of a professional, certified damp technician could have long-term negative results and could result in future damage that the homeowner’s insurance won’t cover.
Water damage can be extensive and expensive. Contacting professional services quickly can ensure that the damage is limited and overall the costs reduced.