Water damage cleanup can be quite intense because of how fast water can do damage. Regardless of the cause, furniture, books, upholstery, flooring, building materials, and more can be permanently damaged or destroyed. Moisture can damage the structural integrity of your home as well, not to mention allow mold to grow and proliferate. For these reasons, the cleanup process must proceed immediately and quickly.
A Timeline of Water Damage
Your belongings can be saturated with moisture within minutes. Within an hour, drywall can swell and break down and within 24 hours, water will tarnish metal surfaces; be soaked into flooring, cabinets, and wooden table legs; and emit musty odors. If you’re on vacation and come back within a week of a flood, high humidity will have saturated the air, causing moisture to damage materials that weren’t initially exposed to water.
Mold can start growing in any moist area in 24 to 48 hours. By a week, mold and microbial growth would have already taken hold and spread to previously unaffected areas. Within a week, an affected building can become structurally unsound and unsafe to occupy.
Water Damage Cleanup Process
Don’t hesitate when you encounter a water-damaged home. Take these steps right away.
- Wipe or mop up any small spill right away.
- If a water-using appliance fails, turn off the water to it and your home.
- Immediately turn off the power before entering a flooded home.
- Move any electrical appliances/devices away from standing water.
- Suction moisture with a wet vacuum, set up fans, and use a professional grade humidifier to dry out the space.
Drying out a water-logged room can take several days. Water is thorough and will seep everywhere, so no detail must be left out. Depending on the problem, it can be too much for one person or even a general contractor to deal with. Contact a water damage cleanup professional who knows what to do and how to restore any salvageable belongings.
Water Damage Remediation/Restoration
Once you call in a professional, they will immediately assess the situation and start the process. Water damage cleanup is intense and requires the following steps:
- Water Removal: Using professional-grade equipment, they will extract water from carpets, floors, drywall, ceilings, furnishings, and any affected item or material. Carpeting, pads, furniture, electronics, and other affected items will be moved away from water.
- Moisture Detection: Residual moisture can hide in pockets. Our team uses specialized monitoring equipment, including a thermo-hygrometer, to find these areas to prevent mold growth, wood rot, and other potential long-term problems.
- Cleaning and Sanitizing: We use products designed and approved to clean and sanitize affected surfaces, materials, and furnishings. Your belongings will be collected; if salvageable, we’ll move them to our secure, climate-controlled facility.
- Intensive Drying: Industrial fans, dehumidification, and ventilation equipment is used to completely dry out affected areas. We’ll inspect your property along the way to make sure we’re taking the right steps.
- Water Damage Repair: Before the restoration process begins, we’ll repair damage and remove materials that are unsalvageable. Our team will replace insulation, drywall, and panels to start making your home livable again.
Do I Need a Water Damage Cleanup Professional?
It can be hard to find the proper equipment at rental centers, while safely using industrial-grade equipment requires training. Even Category 1 clean water from plumbing lines can do a lot of damage. Category 2 water can contain bacteria and other types of contamination, while Category 3 water from sewage backups and natural floods can contain illness-causing pathogens.
The short answer is—you need a professional. In addition to fast assessment, they use water extractors, moisture meters, and wood floor/subfloor drying systems as well as centrifugal air movers and axial fans to dry things out quickly. Proven and approved cleaning, sanitizing, and disinfecting products will be used as well.
Will My Homeowner’s Insurance Cover the Costs?
Usually, unless the problem originated from a sewer line backup outside your home, due to poor maintenance, or if a natural flood event caused water or mold damage. Most insurance policies cover specific plumbing problems, so if mold results from one of these, you experience a burst pipe from freezing weather, a plumbing leak, or appliance breakdown, cleanup should be covered. Insurance riders or separate policies may be available to provide additional coverage.
Restorerz Helps Make Water Damage Cleanup Less Intense
Our licensed Emergency Services crew springs to action quickly and does whatever it takes to protect your property, remove water, and restore your home. We’re the leading water damage restoration company in Los Angeles. Available 24/7, our specialists are certified by the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration (IICRC). Our work always complies with required health codes and environmental regulations. To request service, contact us online or call 323-709-7536.