Disaster Restoration

The Basics of Water Damage Restoration

Water Damage Restoration Oklahoma City is restoring a property that has been damaged by water. It starts with a thorough assessment of the affected area. This will include looking for safety hazards, shutting off power, and using equipment like moisture meters and sensors.

Water Damage

Besides destroying furniture and household items, water damage also supports mold growth. It is essential to address it quickly to minimize the long-term effects.

One of the most important parts of water damage restoration is getting the water out. Water that has soaked into building materials like wood, drywall, and carpeting can cause rotting, warping, and structural problems that are difficult to fix and could even result in the collapse of certain areas of the property. This is why water damage restoration companies usually start this process before the drying out of the property takes place. If necessary, they will remove damaged drywall and carpeting to expose wall cavities and subflooring for faster and more efficient drying.

Once the professionals have removed as much of the water as possible, they will usually turn off any electrical outlets or cords that may be near the affected area to avoid any potential safety hazards. They will also use equipment like moisture meters to determine the amount of moisture in the air and on surfaces.

This information helps them decide if items can be saved or if they will need to be thrown away. If the items can be saved, they will be mopped up using a wet/dry vacuum or towels to remove as much moisture as possible.

If the items are unable to be saved, they will be removed from the affected area and stored in plastic bags. They will then be sanitized and disposed of properly. It is also a good idea to open the windows once conditions outside are safe and allow fresh air to circulate through the home. Fans can help to speed up the evaporation process as well, especially pedestal fans that can be directed to dry higher areas of the home or blower and circulator fans that can move air from room to room.

Dry Out the Area

Water damage restoration is all about returning your home or business to its former condition after a water catastrophe. This could be from a flooded basement, a burst pipe, or even a natural disaster flood. It takes a team of professionals to get things back to normal after major water damage, and the first step is drying out the affected area.

This can be a lengthy process. It is important that every drop of moisture is removed. Using fans to circulate air will help the drying process, and dehumidifiers can also be used.

The water must be completely dry before any refinishing work can take place. This may take a day or two, but it is essential. This is not just for aesthetics, but it also prevents the possibility of mold.

Often, building materials will need to be removed if they are unsalvageable. This can include drywall down to the studs, carpeting, and even the carpet padding. This will help the restoration company expedite the drying process, and it can also allow them to inspect for any additional damage.

It is also a good idea to remove any personal belongings from the affected area. This can be done before the restoration team arrives, or you can hire a professional to do it for you. This is known as a pack out and is usually covered under your homeowner’s insurance policy.

When selecting a water restoration company, find out what kind of equipment they use, if they are certified experts in restoration, and what their price range is. You should also ask for references and contact information for past clients who were satisfied with their services.

Disinfect the Area

Once the water has been removed and the area has been dried out, it’s time to disinfect. This step is very important to prevent mold from growing, which can be very dangerous for occupants. Professionals use ozone generators and other techniques to get the job done quickly and efficiently. They also use dehumidifiers and disinfectants to make sure that the entire property is free of odors and harmful bacteria.

Before they begin the disinfecting process, professionals will first walk through the affected area to assess the damage. They will look for any standing water or water stains, as well as check for electrical hazards. If they notice any swollen or warped materials, they will note that as well and take extra precautions to protect themselves from any potential health risks.

Once they’ve inspected the damage, they will start by turning off the power to the affected areas and then remove any standing water. This is usually done by using large pumps and vacuums that can clear out gallons of water at once. Once the water has been removed, they will dry the area using dehumidifiers and fans. They may even use ozone generators and other techniques that are effective in preventing mold growth.

While it’s possible to do some of the drying on your own if there isn’t a lot of flooding, you should always call in a professional. They have the equipment to pump out and dry the area more effectively than you could, and they will also be able to detect hidden moisture that might not be visible to the naked eye.

Another reason to call in a pro is that they’ll be able to save you money in the long run. If water damage is left untreated, it can lead to extensive and costly structural damage, mold growth, and other health problems for occupants. With prompt water mitigation, you can avoid all of this and minimize the costs associated with water damage restoration.

Remove the Contents

When water damage occurs, it’s important to act quickly. This is because mold will start to grow in just 48 hours after the first appearance of moisture. To ensure that all mold spores are contained and that the area is dry, a professional can use industrial-grade wet/dry shop vacs to remove the affected material and place it in a sealed containment container.

Besides vaccuming, it’s also important to get fans working as soon as possible in order to help the drying process along. You can start with box fans, but it’s better to rent a wet/dry shop fan since these can move five times more air than the average fan.

A good time to start is after the aforementioned inspection and mitigation steps. This will give you a clear idea of how much water has spread and how long it’ll probably take to dry out the area. Afterwards, you can create a quote for the cleanup and restoration work that will need to be done.

Once you’ve removed the damaged materials and sanitized the area, it’s time to start replacing them. This can be a lengthy process, depending on how extensive the damage is. It’s a good idea to call a professional water damage restoration company that can handle the entire job, from initial inspection through replacement and everything in between.

There are a number of things that can be done to prevent water damage and mold in the future, such as regularly inspecting the building for leaks and cracks, cleaning and sealing gutters and downspouts, maintaining properly functioning HVAC systems, and keeping valuables off floors (and away from windows) in below-grade areas. Additionally, you should have a system in place to allow employees to report any water damage immediately to applicable personnel.

Document the Damage

Water damage is not only a nuisance, but it can lead to a variety of long-term problems that threaten the structural integrity of a property. Therefore, a thorough water damage restoration checklist is essential to mitigate the damages and save on repair expenses in the future.

By following the proper steps outlined in this KnowHow template, you can create an effective water damage restoration checklist that can be used by your employees for their next inspections. It can also be helpful in preventing costly restoration mistakes and keeping track of any progress that may have been made.

The template begins with a detailed assessment of the affected area, listing any visible mold or odors and describing the extent of the water damage. It also recommends disconnecting the power to the area and that workers wear appropriate protective gear. Once the inspection has been completed, it should be documented using photos or videos and a written log of actions taken. Then, a comprehensive estimate of the damages should be prepared for insurance representatives. Finally, all receipts for expenses incurred should be saved in case repairs need to be reimbursed by an insurance company.

In addition to being a handy reference tool, a water damage restoration checklist can help ensure the safety of occupants and restoration crew members by prioritizing tasks and eliminating potential hazards such as electrical risks or structural weakness. By taking the time to thoroughly document each step in a restoration project, water damage professionals can provide accurate information to their clients and insurers, and ensure compliance with standards such as IICRC S500.

Use this free template to develop a robust water damage restoration checklist that will help your team mitigate damages and minimize costs in the future. Complete with photos, notes, and moisture readings, this form will help you keep accurate records for each loss and streamline your communication with insurers. Plus, you can edit the form’s layout and use other helpful tools like merging, splitting, locking, or unlocking to meet your specific needs.