What Is Involved in Water Damage Restoration? A Step-by-Step Guide
When you find that your home or other property has flooded, it’s easy to get frustrated in all the chaos of the cleanup and restoration. However, by knowing what to expect in the aftermath, you can stay calm and relaxed knowing that all will be handled properly, and you can also make sure that things are going smoothly in your home.
To help you keep things on track during your water damage restoration, here is a step-by-step guide.
#1: Flood Insurance Claims
If you have flood insurance, don’t waste any time in contacting your insurance adjuster. You need to begin cleanup, salvage, and drying as quickly as you can without waiting for the adjuster, but do take photos as you go to use as evidence of the destruction. Keep damaged materials on-hand to prove that you lost them and leave the adjuster with a phone number to contact you at when they arrive.
You will sign a proof of loss statement after the adjuster assesses the damage to your home. If you don’t have floor insurance, then contact your homeowner’s insurance to see if they will cover the loss.
#2: Electrical Systems
Turn off all gas and electrical services before entering the premises for your safety and the safety of those inside the property.
#3: Sanitize Water
Until your water source has been deemed safe by a local water company, public health department or utility, you should purify water for drinking, cooking, cleaning, and dishes. This ensures continued health and safety for those using the water.
#4: Inspect the Home’s Structural Integrity
Water damage can drastically diminish your home’s construction, especially if the property was flooded for an extended period of time. Inspect the foundation and load-bearing walls, as well as the basement and any columns, to see if there is any visible crumbling. Water damage is especially brutal on basements if the basement id dry but the surrounding space is waterlogged.
#5: Dry Out the Home
To minimize damage, you don’t want to waste any time in drying out your home. This minimizes the possibility of having mold growing or your structure deteriorating. Start by getting water out of the home or building. A lot of the water can be swept out through an open door or use a shopvac or small pump. If the property is an older one, you can try out the area slowly. The older and more fragile elements of aged homes might warp or crack if dried out too quickly.
#6: Preventing Mold
When it is deemed safe to use power in your home, you need to be aggressive in controlling mold for weeks or even months after the flood takes place. Do this by continuously running your air conditioning, as well as a dehumidifier, to remove the humidity in the air. You can also open windows and use fans to keep air circulating, facilitating drying. Use exhaust fans when cooking and baking as well to keep things as dry as possible and prevent the growth of mold.
#7: Call a Professional
Even if the damage looks minor, you never know what is really going on beneath the surface of that water. The wood of your building might have soaked up more than you could have guessed, or there might be more damage lurking elsewhere in places you don’t think to inspect. With a professional on the scene, you can make sure that your water damage restoration in Florida doesn’t miss anything!
The steps above are a good start while you wait for a professional to be able to make it out to the scene, but with a specialist on your property, you can make sure that things are done right the first time and nothing is overlooked. Water damage is an unpredictable beast and can quickly get out of hand – or your property might look fine at first once you have initially dried it out, only to find that your problems have penetrated much deeper than you thought further down the road.
Remember, water damage gets worse the longer it is left unattended. By calling out an expert early, you can minimize the cost and damage done before things get any more out of hand!