Steven Johnson worked as a toolmaker for 26 years, rebuilding and repairing multicavity molds for Calmar Inc. and then as mold-maintenance engineer for Hospira Inc., a medical device manufacturer. Today, he is the maintenance systems manager for Progressive Components and has his own business, MoldTrax in Ashland, Ohio, which designs and sells software for managing mold maintenance (www.moldtrax.com). He can be reached at [email protected] or (419) 289-0281.
Type depends on the source and extent to which it has affected the home. Sources can range from clean water from a burst pipe to black water from sewage backup. Cleanup ranges from $3.75 to $7.00 per square foot. Repairs range from $450 to $7,000. Again, these vary widely depending on the source and extent of damage, whether it's a flooded basement, leaky toilet, or damaged roof.
AAA recommends that you plan ahead for vehicle service by finding an auto repair shop and technician you can trust before you need them. AAA.com/AutoRepair provides information on nearly 7,000 Approved Auto Repair facilities that have met AAA’s high standards for appearance, technician training and certification, insurance coverage and customer satisfaction. AAA regularly inspects every Approved Auto Repair facility and surveys their customers to ensure ongoing performance. In addition, AAA members receive special benefits that include auto repair discounts, an extended 24-month/24,000-mile parts and labor warranty, and AAA assistance in resolving repair-related issues.
Since you should notify your insurer soon as possible after the flood, it’s a good idea to keep your insurance company and local agent’s phone number in your always-ready emergency bag. (Note that the NFIP works through private insurance companies, so you contact your insurer just as you would for any other type of claim). In cases where a flood has affected a region or community, your agent may be busy handling his or her own flood issues. In that case, contact the insurance company’s headquarters.
Once help arrives, the first thing a water mitigation contractor will do is inspect the home and evaluate the damage. In order to properly evaluate the damage, they have special tools and instruments they use to measure the moisture content of the home. To do this, they either poke or rest the instruments on top of surfaces like floors, baseboards and ceilings in the damaged rooms to get an accurate reading. Depending on the moisture content readings and Institution of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC) dry standards for the state you live in, your contractor will assess if drying equipment is needed.
Before any mold is released for production (“blue-tagged”), it is imperative to put the mold through a series of final-check bench procedures to verify “All Systems Go” and minimize any opportunities for the mold to be stopped and returned to the shop for something that should have been caught before it was released. Water leaks, heater problems, etc., can be avoided with a final-check procedure.
Even a competent DIYer should have a qualified professional assess the damage first — making sure no part of the cleanup is missed. Before doing anything, check with your insurance company — they may require a licensed assessment. Don't wait. As soon as you detect any damage, call a professional. With time, each class and category quickly degrades into something worse.
Also, a combination of moisture and humidity can cause mold to grow as well as any unrepaired water leaks. For instance, if the your air conditioning unit is set to a temperature that causes condensation on your windows then common sense should tell you that your windows may not be the only places with condensation or moisture. (between the walls) If there is already mold growing, these temperatures that cause condensation will only feed the mold to grow.
In addition, it’s important to have a working flashlight and turn off all water and electrical sources within the home, says Dr. Maurice A. Ramirez, author of “The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Disaster Preparedness.” Even if the power isn’t operational, it’s a good idea to go to your fuse box and turn off the main, plus all of the individual fuse connections. That way, if the power is reactivated, you’re not at risk for mixing standing water and electricity.
Different removal methods and measures are used depending on the category of water. Due to the destructive nature of water, chosen restoration methods also depend heavily on the amount of water, and on the amount of time the water has remained stagnant. For example, as long as carpet has not been wet for longer than 48 hours, and the water involved was not sewage based, a carpet can usually be saved; however, if the water has soaked for longer, then the carpet is probably irreparable and will have to be replaced. Water damage restoration can be performed by property management teams, building maintenance personnel, or by the homeowners themselves; however, contacting a certified professional water damage restoration specialist is often regarded as the safest way to restore water damaged property.