Not many things in life cause more reason for panic than a flood in your home. Some of the primary causes of household flooding including – Heavy rains, Sewer back-up, Appliance Malfunctions, Malfunctioning sump-pump, and Burst pipes. This can be a time of great confusion as to what to do concerning safety, cleanup and even how to pay for all the repair and restoration. Water damage mitigation is import to keeping the integrity of your home.
What to do if you find yourself in a situation with a flood causing water damage in your home:
Think About Safety First
Paramount to anything during a home disaster is to remain safe. It is possible that you may be forced to leave your home if the flooding is bad enough. Always consult a professional to make sure it is also safe when you return to your home.
Some simple steps:
- Turn off the power – water and electricity obviously do not mix. But, if turning off the power requires you to enter or stand in wet areas it is best to leave it alone and call an electrician.
- Protective clothing– wear things such as rubber boots and gloves–when you re-enter your home.
- Investigate all affected items and be sure to clean them before use to avoid getting sick.
- Remove your valuable items such as cash, jewelry or precious metals.
- Lift wood furniture off the wet carpet areas and insert foam under the feet to prevent staining of the carpet and further damage to the furniture.
Dry Out Your Home
Clean up the “easy water” using a shop vacuum and towels. Everything will remain damp and wet until you get professional grade equipment to dry it. In the mean time the humidity is high so iff you have power, use your central air conditioning to assist in removing humidity, and keep your system fan in the “on” position (not auto). Portable fans and dehumidifiers can help start the drying process until further assistance arrives. You can’t get too dry so you should make sure to get some air movement going. You may need the assistance of a professional restoration contractor to ensure your home is dry so consider consulting a local water damage mitigation specialist. Time is of the essence you basically have hours to get the drying process started and only a few days in order completely dry a home and virtually prohibit the growth of molds and mildews.
Call Your Insurance Carrier
Your homeowners’ insurance coverage will vary depending on what policies you have. Once you have filed a claim your insurance company will send an adjuster to assess the damage. Photo document the items before, during, and after cleanup. Insurance adjusters often times recomend a qualified water damage mitigation company to help you with your cleanup and restoration process.
Water Damage Cleanup
Do your best to determine what is salvageable and throw away anything that is too damaged or no longer safe to use. Be aware that you may need to remove flooring, drywall, and insulation to prevent mold and mildew from spreading in your home. Furniture may also need to be dried out, cleaned or thrown away depending on the level of water damage mitigation.
Studies show mold can begin developing after the first 24 hours of a flood, and once it has started growing it can be difficult and costly to remove. Time is of the most importance when it comes to mold. Remove items from water and begin drying them, the less likely they are to be lost to mold, but it’s always best to err on the side of caution and have a professional assess the situation. In the event of mold, a mold remediation specialist can assist you in the removal and restoration of your home to a safe and healthy condition.
Water damage repairs in your home from flooding can take a long time to complete. Flooring often needs to be replaced, walls need to be restored, broken possessions are often in need of repair, etc. If you are unsure about what your first steps for home repairs should be when your house floods consult a contractor with a background in remodeling and renovation.