Though a competent DIY homeowner may be able to clean up and repair some damage, it's important to have a professional assess it first to determine the extent and any underlying conditions. Missing even a small amount, or its causes, can lead to costlier repairs later. Even small quantities of moisture may result in mold growth. Plus, undiagnosed causes will lead to recurrences. For instance, fixing a damaged ceiling but not the leaky roof that caused it will only lead to another wrecked ceiling.
When the next water damage call comes in for a flood cleanup due to a broken water pipe or drain backup, make sure you have all the commercial restoration equipment on hand that you need to tackle the job in a moment’s notice. Events like floods, hurricanes, wildfires and other natural disasters can leave homes and businesses in peril and in need of professional restoration services.
A flood-damaged car that has been totaled should have a “salvage” title, but some sellers use lax registration procedures in certain states to “launder” titles and eliminate the salvage branding. Buyers should also know that flood-damaged vehicles can be shipped anywhere for resale, and continue to appear in the marketplace for many months following major floods.
Once a region has been officially declared a “disaster area” by government authorities, property owners have access to increased resources, including public services to protect and remediate the area. In addition, you may have access to financial assistance. Your insurance company will have additional information on this or you can contact FEMA directly.
Part of drying a house and cleaning it is knowing what you are doing, not learning on the job. Our team is local, understands the soil and water tables of Virginia, but using national standards. We’ve got thousands of happy customers in Northern Virginia, Maryland, and Washington DC, and if you look through our testimonials we probably have one from your town. We’re a hometown team, so your neighbors are our neighbors.
"One of the biggest problems—especially in Houston in the summer—is going to be mold," says Tyler Drew, a Los Angeles real estate agent and investor. "The longer a house sits with water, the worse the mold infestation. Affected areas have to be removed, the wood and concrete treated with anti-mold agents, and all of this has to be done after the house is sealed, in order to prevent the infestation from spreading and sickening people."
Gone were helpful clues for the repair technicians who had yet to begin troubleshooting and analyzing mold performance and wear. So now, how will the repair techs determine if the 63-day production run was too long? Or whether the leader pins, bushings, and interlocks were greased properly during the run? And how will they know if all the swishing during cleaning did not create any “dings” in the sleeves that could be blamed on something else instead of poor cleaning practices? Other questions will remain unanswered, too: Does the mold still have excess vent residue in the top right quadrant? Were all the ejector sleeves numbered and in the proper mold position before they were removed?
Mark the damaged drywall with a pencil after you determine the area of drywall you want to remove. Use a straightedge to mark lines vertically and horizontally on the face of the drywall. Whenever possible, have the lines fall over the centers of the framing members behind the drywall; this will provide backing and a fastening surface for the drywall patch.
Throughout the drying process, crews will stop by periodically to monitor how the drying is progressing. Specifically, they monitor the dehumidifiers’ intake and output temperatures and humidity levels to make sure the dehumidifiers aren’t putting wet air out into the room. They’ll also go back and take readings of the same surfaces they did during the inspection phase. As rooms are declared dry, crews will often move equipment around to other areas of the home that are still wet.
Even if the water in your home is clear, it could be contaminated by sewage or household chemicals. Ramirez recommends wearing waders, hip- or waist-high waterproof boots. In addition, wear rubber gloves to remove water-damaged possessions and to avoid contaminants, Ramirez notes. Be sure to throw out any food that may have come into contact with flood waters. FEMA recommends boiling water until authorities declare the water supply is safe.
Gradual damage is when something happens slowly over time and causes damage to your property. Gradual damage due to water damage is a common problem when it comes to insurance claims. An example of gradual damage is when something happens slowly, like paint chipping off a wall it starts with a small chip, then eventually half the wall is uncovered.
At WaterBear, our water damage Hillsboro specialists understand that a flood in your home or business is emotionally devastating. It takes up valuable time and wreaks havoc on your day-to-day activities. That’s why we offer the best in drying technology, equipment and training to get you back to the life you’re used to as quickly as possible. Our proprietary Dry-In-Place technology places us among the nation’s leaders in Water Damage Mitigation. From our years of experience we have learned that a quick response is the key to limiting damage and potential mold growth in any water damage situation. We strive to get your life back to the way you want it as quickly as possible.
There are also several classes of water damage. The class of damage is important when assessing water damage repair options. Class 1 is the least harmful form of damage. Materials absorb very little of the water from this type of damage. Water damage repair is the easiest in this type of situation. Class 2 has a fast rate of evaporation, which means that carpets and cushions may be damaged. Water damage repair is more difficult when it involves class 2 damage. Class 3 has the fastest rate of evaporation. In this case, the water may come from broken sprinklers or other overhead sources, soaking the walls and furniture. Class 4 requires special water restoration and water removal procedures. This type of damage may affect hardwood floors, plaster, and concrete.
Before you remove any water or make any repairs, fully document the damage for your insurer by taking photos or video. Digital versions are best, says Ramirez, because they can be stored electronically and easily copied. If you start removing water or making repairs before you photograph the damage, you could potentially decrease the extent of your coverage, he says.
Any mold professional should be able to explain your mold removal project in plain English. If a contractor is unable to explain the basic processes and steps of mold remediation and mold removal in layman’s terms, be very wary! If someone tries to complicate and confuse you about the process and scare you into hiring them, walk away and say, “Thanks, but no thanks.”
Our flood damage repair experts have the necessary training and equipment to properly remove flood water and sewage that may contain harmful bacteria and fecal matter. We are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to react quickly to flood damage emergencies and help mitigate the damage before beginning the restoration process. Our specific flood damage restoration services include:
Your insurance company will only pay for additional living expenses up to your policy's ALE dollar limits. Because repairs on your home can sometimes take months, monitor your expenses carefully to make sure you have enough ALE to cover the entire time you’ll be out of your home. If you reach your policy's ALE dollar limits before your home is fully repaired, you’ll have to pay the rest of the expenses out of your own pocket.
Ice dams and other roof problems can also cause water damage to siding materials as well. Here, the biggest danger is water seeping in behind your siding and causing permanent damage to more vulnerable materials. So if this happens, you will need to remove or replace the siding quickly before rot sets in. Water can also seep in behind faux stone and other external walls around your home. So it’s important to be thorough in this inspection.
Once you get the OK from your insurer to remove the water, use a sump pump, available from most hardware or home supply stores for $150 to $500, and a wet vac ($40 to $130). Ramirez cautions that water is heavy—a cubic foot weight 10 lbs.—so be careful not to injure yourself, especially if you’re carrying buckets of water up and down stairs. Open doors and windows to allow fresh air to circulate so long as that won’t allow in more water.
During the walkthrough, compile a list of flooded equipment to help you estimate man-power requirements and create a preliminary schedule of repair work. As mobilization of crews begins, start developing job strategies, such as finding office space, living accommodations, and transportation for crews. You must also think about arranging food/catering services and developing work schedules. Once your crews have been mobilized and job-site safety requirements are met (see SIDEBAR: Developing a Safety Plan Following a Natural Disaster), it's time to go to work.
When left to sit for long periods of time, especially if the homeowners temporarily relocate while recovering from a house fire, further structural damage can complicate matters—making it difficult to return life back to normal. Calling in a water damage repair company is an excellent preventative measure for reducing the risk of further problems and headaches.
It is possible to recover from a catastrophic event with a more reliable system than before. However, the speed and efficiency of the recovery will depend on the availability and accuracy of documentation. In preparation or planning for the recovery of an electrical system, the facility should ensure that all drawings/documentation are up to date and a copy is kept in a safe location that can be accessed after the event.
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.