Updated: January 26, 2022
It’s safe to say that out of all the possible nightmares a homeowner might have to deal with, water damage pretty much ranks at the top of the list. Whether it’s due to flood, leakage, or a burst pipe, the aftermath of the water damage is draining on so many levels – no pun intended. If you find yourself in an unfortunate situation, it’s normal to feel overwhelmed and at a loss, but we’re here to help you sort out your mind to quickly take the steps you need to. That said, here are a few solutions to fixing the problems of water damage.
Understand the Different Types of Water
First of all, it’s crucial to understand that there are different types of water. They fall under three categories: clean, gray, and black water. Clean water results from leaky pipes, condensation, rain, and similar sources, and it’s relatively harmless to clean up on your own. Gray water comes from clean toilets, washing machines, dishwashers, and similar sources. It’s slightly dirty water that may contain some contaminants, so be sure to wear protective gear before cleaning it up. The third and final type is black water, such as river flooding or sewage water. This kind of water contains serious contaminants that can cause grave health problems if you come into direct contact with it, so it’s better to leave it to the experts.
Shut off the Source and Electrical Systems
Before you start the action, it’s obvious that you’ll shut off the source of the water leakage. What’s not so obvious and can easily be forgotten is to shut off all electrical systems and gas lines in the building. Never enter the affected premises before doing so, or you risk getting electrocuted right away. Once you’re done with the cleanup, be sure to have an electrician check for possible issues before you reconnect the systems.
Dry Out the Area
Now, you can start dealing with the damage done, and you’ll need to drain and dry out the affected area. Taking quick and effective measures in drying out the water is crucial. The professionals at Cotton GDS, explain that failing to extract and effectively dry the water within 48 hours is a sure recipe for letting mold develop. After all, mold thrives in wet and enclosed environments, and there’s nothing like the furniture, carpets, and other flooded household items to be its new home. There are a few things you can do on your own to dry out the area, such as moving the air naturally or mechanically, using a portable dehumidifier, pumping water, or using substances that absorb water. If the damage is too severe to contain on your own, you’ll need to call a specialist for the job.
Get Rid of Damaged Materials
Once your household is all dried up, it’s time to sort your materials into damaged and salvageable. Damaged and porous items like fabric, insulation, carpets, drywall, wood, and unsealed cement will most likely be thrown away since water can quickly damage them and they allow for the colonization of mold and mildew to a great extent. You can try your best to isolate and dry your favorite items, though it will become more difficult to salvage them as time passes.
Disinfect, Clean Up, and Restore
After getting rid of your damaged items, you’ll need to disinfect the whole area before taking any action. You can choose a bleach solution or any other effective DIY disinfectant, spray it over the area, wipe it clean, and let it dry out. You’ll find it easy to disinfect and sanitize the surfaces, but you’ll probably need a professional damage restoration service to disinfect the air and hidden places. Once you’re sure you’ve eliminated all traces of microbes and possible contaminants, only then can you start the restoration process. You’ll then be free to repair the walls, change the furniture, install new floorings, or do the renovations you need to do.
Despite your best efforts, it’s possible to overlook certain parts or items. It’s only when it’s too late that you realize the damage done. To prevent this sort of damage, or at least minimize the damage, it’s important to regularly inspect for possible issues. For instance, attic condensation is one of the biggest reasons why mold develops in households. Mold and mildew can be very toxic to humans, and the more they’re left to grow, the more dangerous they become. That’s why it’s important to follow routine inspections and call in an expert to inspect the house following water damage.