Water damage is one of those emergencies that can cause a lot of havoc. Whether it’s due to natural causes like flooding or things like pipe leaks, you don’t want to ignore any such scenarios. Cleaning up quickly after water damage has occurred is the best thing to do. It’s usually best to let the professionals, like those at Carpet Cleaning in Texas, handle such things.
There is often the temptation among many homeowners to attempt a cleanup after water damage. While this sounds like common sense, the reality is a bit different.
For starters, you may end up doing more damage in your attempt to clean up properly. For instance, if you’ve discovered the water damage days after it first started, there is a good chance things like molds may have grown in the affected part of the house. Attempting to deal with molds on your own creates a whole other set of problems. Going online for tips on how to deal with water damage isn’t advisable either. At best, you’ll get general information. In the worst cases, you’ll get misleading tips.
What Should You Do?
Given that properly handling water damage involves a lot of nuances, you need to know what to do once it occurs.
Here are the things to do.
1)Secure the Area
If the water damage occurs quickly, you may not have time to do a lot of things. However, you can still take some basic precautions. Securing the area affected by the water damage is one of those precautions.
If it’s a home, ensure that no one is in the immediate area where the water damage has occurred. Do a quick, cursory survey of the place to see if there is imminent danger. For instance, if water damage occurred due to a roof that collapsed suddenly, get everyone away from that part of the house. If possible, remove all the valuable items like furniture and electronics. Of course, you’ll need to be careful about possible exposed electrical wires. If there is any indication of electrical malfunction, leave everything as it is.
If the damage occurred in a public building, the affected part should be closed off to other people. Once you’ve ensured that no one is in immediate danger, call emergency services.
2) Contact Your Insurance
Get in touch with your house insurance provider as soon as possible. Depending on the exact cause of the water damage, your insurance coverage may come in handy during the subsequent repairs. Even when you don’t think the damage will be covered, call them anyway. There could be a way to work something out.
3) Secure the Rest of the House or Building
Once you’ve secured the immediate area where the water damage has occurred, it’s time to secure the rest of the house. If water damage occurred in a room, ensure that no water is actively finding its way into the adjacent rooms. When necessary and advisable, stuff some thick materials under the door of such a room to prevent water from permeating into other parts of the house.
Take inventory of everything to see which ones are still unaffected by the water damage. Things like food items and medicines should be discarded if there is a chance they came into contact with water from the damage. Unplug all electronics from their wall outlets. Turn off the gas supply. If necessary, turn off the main electrical switch to the house as you wait for emergency services. As you do all that, check all floor surfaces carefully before you walk on them.
These are some of the main things to do as you wait for help. Of course, you should take pictures of the water damage. This could come in handy when filing an insurance claim later on.
Things Not to DO
There are numerous things you shouldn’t do when water damage occurs. These include:
i)Attempting to repair the water damage on your own – Even if you’re a professional with experience in such matters, you may not have the right tools to do so. It’s best to call other professionals to tackle this task for you.
ii) Attempting to remove water from the basement – If the water damage is significant, there is a good chance that it may have weakened the basement. It’s best to leave it untouched as you wait for professional help.
iii) Using electrical appliances – There could be a naked wire somewhere. This could cause a short circuit and increase the chance of electrocution.
iv) Attempting to dry the wet surfaces with a blow dryer or other such equipment -This will accelerate mildew colonization of the affected areas.
Ultimately, resist the urge to start doing the repairs yourself. Water damage remediation should be a careful, well-thought-out process that should only be handled by trained professionals. This will ensure that you avoid further exacerbation of the problem.