If you’ve ever had water damage from a flood, be it outside water or a broken pipe, you know how thoroughly discouraging it is. When the water recedes or is cleaned up, you’re staring at furniture and carpets coated with mud.
We’ve been there. Twice. It’s a maddening process of clean up and repair. Yet the repairs are necessary. Left undone, big problems are almost guaranteed.
Here’s a few things to look for when it comes to water damage and repairs.
Run fans and dehumidifiers as soon as possible. This is the first response. Getting the moisture out of the air is crucial. Commercial cleaning and restoration companies have large dehumidifying units that you can rent to place in your home. (Depending on the terms of your homeowners insurance policy, they may be covered by insurance.)
Drywall. If water has come in contact with drywall it doesn’t take long for it to absorb the moisture. If water contact is made for more than two hours, you’ve got a problem. When our house flooded, we had to cut out the drywall in all the effected rooms, about 15 inches above the floor. It was replaced with new drywall. The reason is that mold will develop inside the walls.
Remove the drywall and take out insulation that is wet. Run fans on any areas that show moisture. Spray a mold inhibitor on the affected areas and let dry before adding new insulation and new drywall.
Floors. If it was a pipe break under the floor, you’ll likely need to strip everything down to the sub-floor. Water always takes the path of least resistance and will find every tiny crack and crevice. After a flood, water often will have seeped between the layers of flooring. It doesn’t take much water to ruin the pad under carpet. Pull up the carpet and the pad. The carpet may or may not be salvageable depending on the severity of the flood. Genuine wood floors can often be allowed to dry. Over time any bowing of the wood will go back to normal. Linoleum and laminate floors may not be so forgiving. Regardless of flooring type, the key is to be certain no moisture has penetrated into the sub-floor. Unrepaired, it will produce mold and wood rot.
Insulation. Most insulation in walls is bat insulation, the pink fiberglass type that you cut and place between the studs. When insulation gets wet, it needs to be replaced. Don’t ever try to dry it out. It’s not terribly expensive to replace. Wet insulation left in the wall can trap moisture and mask potential or probably mold problems. Also, after it gets wet, the R-Value may be reduced, meaning it will no longer protect from heat and cold the way it should.
If the insulation is blown in cellulose, it still needs to be removed. And know that it’s going to be messier to clean up!
Your friends at Sinclair are all about keeping the water inside your pipes. If you have a water break emergency, we are here for you. Please call us at 806-749-COOL (2665) and we’ll be glad to get your home back to normal!