Water Damage Restoration
Water damage restoration is not a topic that homeowners wish to learn about, but when pipes freeze, a toilet overflows, or a water heater valve breaks, homeowners need to learn it quickly. This article will discuss the process of water damage restoration and some pitfalls to avoid.
Water mitigation is a process: water extraction, demolition (dependant on the severity of water damage), dry-out and dehumidify, and sanitizing.
Water extraction must be the very first task performed. Standing water will be extracted from the property with specialized water extraction vacuums. Once the water has been extracted, the property is then ready for the dry-out and dehumidifying phase to begin.
Dryout and Dehumidify
The dry-out and dehumidifying phase involves some demolition to allow the equipment to work properly and effectively. Baseboards will be removed, and holes may be cut into the wall to allow moisture to escape. If the wall is an exterior wall, then the sheetrock will be cut out so that the insulation can be removed. Wet insulation is challenging to dry and should be removed and discarded.
Air movers will be set up to keep the moisture in the air circulating while the dehumidifiers remove the moisture from the air.
Once the water has been extracted, and the moisture levels have been brought to proper levels, then the area can be sanitized. Proper sanitation kills mold and disinfects the surfaces.
Many water mitigation companies will use specialized organic sanitizers for this, but you can also you a solution of hot water and detergent or a diluted bleach solution.
Water Damage Restoration
Depending on how bad the water damage is, it may be necessary to demolish much of the sheetrock, flooring, cabinets, etc. A small leak may not warrant this but, if a toilet overflows, a pressurized water line bursts, or a water heater fails, often extreme demolition is mandatory to ensure that all moisture is brought to safe levels.
How much demolition required will be directly related to the origin of the leak. In the case of sprinkler lines bursting, this could mean full walls and ceilings be removed and often the floors as well. Qualified water mitigation technicians evaluate this by using specialized moisture detectors and infrared cameras to detect areas holding excessive moisture.
The final step in water damage restoration is the rebuild. Not all water mitigation companies are contractors. Most water mitigation companies will extract the water, do the demo, and then complete the dry out and dehumidifying; however, full restoration companies will also do the build back.
Hiring a good contractor or restoration company is important to ensure your water damage is fully restored to its previous condition or better. The company must have experience working with insurance companies so that you can be sure that all the damage will be paid for properly. It is common to discover more damage as the work begins, and the company must be skillful at documenting these damages and communicating with the insurance companies through supplements.
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