The Importance of Acting Fast After Water Damage
When water damage occurs, it affects the structure and contents of your home. When properly dried and treated, the damage becomes a thing of the past, but what happens when that's not the case?
Imagine sitting on your couch watching Fixer Upper or Property Brothers (we love these shows!). In so many of their episodes, they start tearing down walls just to be stopped short when there is something nasty beneath that sheetrock. This is normally because a previous home owner has experienced some type of water damage, and has left it to dry on its own. Doing this is detrimental in so many ways.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recommends throwing out any materials that haven't been properly cleaned and dried 48 hours after they've been saturated with water. This can include sheetrock, carpet, HVAC ductwork, etc. because these wet materials instantly become a breeding ground for bacteria, mold, and mildew. And, every time your air conditioner kicks on, it's blowing these toxins into every single room of your house. Scary, right?
Longterm exposure to air-borne microorganisms can cause severe health issues for anyone living in the home. You and your family can develop upper respiratory problems, weakened immune systems, and, in severe cases, diseases such as Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disorder (COPD).
Now, let's talk about the structure of your home. Our homes are put together using mostly concrete, lumber, metal, and drywall. If concrete stays damp, it will grow mold. If lumber stays wet, mold spores begin to grow and the lumber starts to rot. If metal stays wet, it starts to rust. If drywall stays wet, it grows mold. Do you see the trend here? All of these things affect the stability of your home, which is never good.
Here are the steps you need to take to properly mitigate your property:
1. Address and repair the source of the water damage (i.e. a broken pipe, leaky toilet, etc.)
2. Have a professional inspect the affected area
3. Remove the water from the affected area
4. Dry all affected materials that can be saved, as well as the affected area
5. Treat the area with an antimicrobial treatment
6. Restore your home
Unexpected expenses are every homeowner's nightmare, and we totally get it, but, we can promise you this--The longer you wait, the higher the price tag becomes.
Fortunately, there are some things that you, as the homeowner, can do to help control some of your costs, and keep more money in your pocket:
1. Call a water restoration company the moment you discover the damage. These professionals are used to dealing with these situations and can guide you toward the quickest, most efficient solution.
2. Talk with your homeowner insurance carrier. Most insurance companies cover a good deal of water damage as long as it isn't old. In most cases, the only cost to you would be your deductible. **We do highly recommend speaking with a restoration specialist before speaking with your insurance carrier**
Give us a call today at (205) 637-0143 for your free estimate!