Flooding and water damage in your home or office is one of the most devastating experiences. Whether caused by leakage, heavy flood, or hurricane, the damage may be of mild or severe nature. Whatever the case, the damage may grow molds if the building materials are exposed to water for too long.
This is exactly why you need to act fast as soon as you sense water damage!
Wet conditions are perfect for deadly mold and mildew to develop – and it may make the situation even more hazardous. On top of that, serious water damage in homes and offices can often lead to toilet overflows and sewerage backups, giving rise to an extremely unpleasant odor.
Water damage can come with a lot of stress, frustration, and desolation – and you shouldn’t have to deal with everything alone. The best bet is to get professional help to take care of the problems caused by water damage.
Before we move on to the process of water damage restoration in Fort Myers, let’s have a quick look at different types of water damage.
3 Types of Water Damage and Ways to Deal with Them
The first step to water damage restoration is to identify the type and severity of the damage. Water damage can fall into any of the following categories:
Clean Water Damage
Leakage or overflow of water from a sanitary water source often doesn’t pose significant health risks. However, if it’s allowed to stand in the environment for a considerable period of time, it may become unclean and toxic.
Grey Water Damage
Grey water refers to water that is combined with urine or water that originates from sump pump failures or seepage, or that comes from washing machines or dishwashers. Grey water is usually contaminated and leads to serious health complications.
Rainwater also falls into this category, as it may mix with contaminants before entering your property.
Black or Toxic Water Damage
Containing pathogens, toxins, and harmful agents, black water is highly contaminated and toxic for human health.
This water damage refers to one caused by sewage water, toilet backflows, seawater flooding, ground surface water, and other toxic water entering the property due to hurricane rain and storms.
To determine the ideal course of restorative action against water damage, it is essential that you determine the severity of it as well. Ideally, you should call a professional service for water damage and mold inspection in.
Health and Safety First
No two water damage situations are the same. Each situation requires careful inspection, assessment, and monitoring to ensure efficient water restoration. The easiest way to go about this is by hiring a professional restoration staff that is trained and experienced in handling such situations. Like iMold. The owner of iMold has been in the industry in SWFL for 25 years. He finds simple solutions to mold and water damages.
Water damage in your residential or commercial property can leave you exposed to many hazards. Not only can the water be contaminated with pesticides, sewage, and waterborne organisms but it can also contain bacteria and mold spores.
Hence, one must take proper precautionary measures before stepping into a Category 3 damaged room or structure.
These may include:
Wearing heavy rubber gloves, thick boots, strong hat, and a dust mask
Changing clothes before entering a clean area
Washing clothes separately from regular clothes to prevent cross-contamination Keeping a first-aid kit
Treating cuts and injuries immediately
Taking proper rest to avoid overheating
Using electrical equipment in dry conditions only
Washing face and hands regularly with an anti-bacterial soap
Property inspection and the initial restoration steps against water damage should be taken during daylight time. Never get the mitigation process started at night or in the dark if possible.
Make sure that you don’t use any lanterns, gas lights, or candles. In case you smell gas or sense instability in the property structure, leave the place immediately. You should instantly get in touch with authorities and make sure that you or nobody else enters the property until an authorized inspection has been done.
It’s also important to note that your electric breaker should be turned off if there’s no power to ensure that it isn’t accidentally turned on once the power is restored. This also applies to fuel oil tank and natural gas meter.
The preparation of water damage restoration usually involves:
Draining, drying, and the removing of sagging ceilings
Removing raised floor tiles and other tripping objects
Removing wall mirrors and picture frames to prevent them from falling off the weakened wall Making a list of property items and furnishings in each room
Keeping a record of the damage by taking photographs and documenting the contents
Sealing undamaged areas with plastic sheeting before demolition
It’s crucial to realize that undamaged areas may still have molds developing within the wall and ceiling. If you suspect a wall or ceiling to be wet, even slightly, you should consider inspecting the back of the wall and the interior for mold growth or any damage.
Moreover, you’d want to make sure that the water collected in your basement is pumped out only after the standing water outside the property has subsided. This is critical because it will prevent the entire property from collapsing.
What about the Items in Your House or Office
If your property has been flooded, you should consider removing all items that were under water. You should also put all food items in double bags and discard them as soon as possible.
Other items to discard include affected rugs, pillows, mattresses, and furniture. However, if the damage is caused by clean water, the items may be dried and easily restored after dehumidification. Refrigerators and appliances with internal insulation should be discarded.
Please note that organic materials, including animal furs and leather, as well as items with visible molds can’t be restored.
You may put washable garments, linen fabric pieces, and towels in the laundry with hot water and detergent. Moreover, hard items, such as finished wood, metal, and glass can be restored after decontamination.
If you have guns or uncoated metal items, consider coating them with rust-preventive, moisture- displacing oil prior to their restoration so that they don’t lose their value. Computer hard drives should also be sprayed with moisture-displacing oil before allowing them to dry and reinstalling them into the computer.
As far as the photographs and paper documents are concerned, make sure that you lay them flat on a dry floor and allow them to dry. You may also want to get important documents and papers photocopied to preserve them.
Throughout this process of removing, drying, and restoring items, don’t forget to list down and take pictures of the damaged contents.
Following are a few helpful tips for a successful demolition process.
- Open windows and doors so that air may circulate and items may dry quicker
- Get rid of plumbing fixtures for decontamination and reuse
- Vacuum all moldy surfaces and areas if possible for effective mold removal
- Cut the carpets into small pieces and carry them out in double bags
- Removed furnished flooring and allow the sub-floor to dry and decontaminate
- Cut holes into all water damaged walls and ceilings for drying
- Put all moldy materials in plastic bags
For effective decontamination, clean all items and surfaces with mold with a vacuum. Furthermore, consider washing all surfaces with a cleaner and disinfectant or perhaps with daily-use detergent and water. A scraper or a scrub brush may work wonders for dark, stubborn stains.
In addition to this, consider using a disinfectant cleaner or a bleach solution for the saturation of contaminated surfaces. Don’t forget to keep it wet for at least 10 minutes.
You must know that drying and decontaminating a water damaged property can take as long as two weeks. It’s not only a lot of hard work but it also needs careful attention and implementation of the right practices.
A professional restoration company can put the hard work on autopilot for you, allowing you to relax and recover from your loss.
Hiring a Water Damage Restoration Company
Restoring your property after it has faced water destruction at the right time in the right way is crucial to ensure a successful process. If the problem isn’t addressed immediately, standing water and moisture
will invite bacteria and mold to ruin the place, causing structural damage and increasing the risk of health complications.
Smart home and business property owners hire a restoration company immediately after water damage. iMold is a leading restoration company that offers unbeatable, affordable, and lasting solutions against water and mold damage.
This licensed, certified, and highly experienced company will help you minimize structural damage to your property and prevent mold growth to ensure your health and safety. To make your home or office look as good as it was before water struck it, contact them today!