AD| You return home after a hard day, and you see a catastrophic sight – water leaking from the apartment above yours has created a surge in your living room. Or worse, heavy rainfall caused a major flood in your area, and your house was not spared either.
These situations shouldn’t happen to anyone, but they are sometimes inevitable. They will leave you with a mess that you must sort out to redevelop your living space. It can be a long, arduous, and costly process, but if you call the Tempe water damage restoration company, the entire process will be much easier.
It’s worth mentioning the importance of property insurance in the event of such disasters. Whether you are a tenant in a rented house or a property owner, you should get adequate insurance coverage. A proper policy will help you recover damages from floods in the future.
Get Ready for the Fight
Before you start repairing damage, you need to take steps to protect yourself and your property. A flooded area is an ideal place for mold and fungus development. Also, stagnant water can contain many parasites that can be dangerous to your health. So, first and foremost, you need to wear appropriate protective equipment. Rubber boots, gloves, and a face mask are required.
Immediately after spotting a flood, turn off the electricity in your home to prevent the risk of fire or explosion. Of course, you should only do that if the access to the main circuit is not in a flooded area. If so, it’s best to call an electrician to turn the power off. Only then can you safely proceed to repair the water damage.
Consider whether the damage is a major issue that can be resolved quickly or you need professional help. If the flood is confined to a single area, you can take steps to dry it out. But when you deal with a large-scale flood, the best solution will be to hire specialists. The cost of hiring them will depend on the damage extent and restoration needs.
Save or Throw
The first step is to remove all absorbent materials from your home. These include carpets, fabric, and insulation. Unfortunately, for many of them, water can be destructive. So you will have to make some difficult decisions. If you’re lucky, you’ll be able to dry out the furniture yourself, but some items must be replaced.
It’s not easy to separate yourself from the belongings you have invested in for years. But some things simply can’t be saved after being in prolonged contact with water. Wood, drywalls, tapestry, curtains, rugs, leather and upholstered furniture have almost no chance to survive a major flood. You’ll probably have to throw or dispose of them away.
In the case of a small-scale flood, some of these belongings can be cleaned. Yet, electrical appliances, wooden or upholstered furniture can only be repaired by professionals. So you’ll have to take care of these things, and your insurance company will help you figure out how to fix them.
A detailed list of items that can be saved or tossed after the flood is below:
Draining and drying the affected area will be necessary before thorough cleaning. Identifying the source and clearing away standing water will allow you to dehumidify the area and restore it to its original condition.
Don’t wait too long to remove standing water and drain the space. The sooner you start, the more stuff you can save. But make sure to document the damaged area and all your belongings affected by the flood. You’ll need that for your insurance claim. Here, you can find out how to make one.
Lift or remove as much furniture and belongings to make damaged areas more accessible. Use buckets to empty standing water, if any. In hard-to-reach areas, use high-absorbent mops to eliminate excess water. Finally, you could use a wet-dry vacuum to suck water residues from the floor.
After water removal, start drying the room. Open windows and doors and let the natural ventilation do its thing. It would be best to leave everything like that for a couple of days. Fans can speed up the drying process, but your electrician must assess whether it’s safe to turn on the electricity in your house. If not, you can connect the fans to the generator.
If you can feel the dampness in the air, it’s good to use a fan to circulate the air in the affected area. You need large-capacity industrial fans to dry out the surrounding materials for larger rooms. Once you turn the fans on, look for hidden areas that need water damage repair.
It will take several days or weeks to dry out the areas of the house that have been flooded. Once the water has dried out, you can start cleaning, sanitization, and restoration. This is probably the best moment to assess the house damage, so make sure to check everything, from the floor to the roof.
Once you figure out what can be repaired and what needs replacement, take time to disinfect the rooms and all stuff affected by water damage. A bleach solution comes in handy to prevent mold appearance and bacteria growth.
Check for Hidden Moisture and Mold
Unsealed drywall, concrete, and wood are porous, which means they will take more time to dry. That makes them perfect for moisture to hide and mold to develop. The goal is to prevent it from spreading, and your first step toward it is a fast reaction and room drying within 3 to 4 days. Once you are sure that the room is dry, check again for mold spots before bringing the furniture in. If you see it, it would be best to call professionals to inspect the mildew type and remove it.
Depending on the extent of the flood, moving back can be feasible in less than a month if you do everything right. Of course, it’s crucial to follow the procedure related to the insurance company or local government (in case of a natural disaster). But a priority is to make your home functional, clean, and safe again.