Water damage can occur as a result of many different events.
Photo by jim gade on Unsplash
A plumbing leak, broken pipe, storm, or natural disaster can all lead to water damage in your home or business. Whatever the issue, the impact of these events is similar.
Your property is damaged and must be repaired quickly and effectively to avoid further damage and cost. Water damage restoration is the process of removing excess moisture from an area to prevent further decay.
It involves both the cleanup and repair process. The process is carried out by professional restoration operators who carry out an inspection to determine the damage and ensure things are back to normal. Moreover, they leverage the most suitable equipment available to guarantee quick and effective restoration and cleaning work.
What is water damage?
There are a few different terms that are often used interchangeably in the context of water damage.
Water damage, infiltration, and intrusion are all terms you’re likely to come across. All three terms point to water that has gotten into your home and may cause damage, like rotting wood in the walls or a wet basement. This water in your home can come from various sources, such as rainwater, flooding, or leaky plumbing.
How does water cause damage?
When water comes into contact with wood or walls, it undergoes a chemical reaction known as oxidation. This causes the wood to rot and decay and the walls to develop molds and mildew growth.
The water acts as a catalyst to speed up this process, and due to its natural properties, it spreads the damage much faster than it would happen naturally. The water also attracts bacteria and other microscopic organisms. As these bacteria feed off the wood, they excrete waste products, which cause more damage.
In addition to this, the water itself acts as an insulator. This means the water prevents wood and walls from drying out, and it prevents air from circulating through them. This creates a perfect environment for the water damage to spread and the wood to decay.
What is water damage restoration?
Water damage restoration, or water damage repair, is the process of cleaning and repairing water-affected areas of your home or commercial property. The damage will vary depending on the amount of water and how long it was allowed to sit before being discovered.
Property that has suffered water damage may be structurally unsound and pose health and safety risks until it is cleaned and repaired. Water damage restoration services can include:
- Inspections and assessments of affected areas
- The removal of water-soil contaminants
- Repairing and restoring the affected property
Understanding restoration services and processes
Before we go into how to prevent water damage, we should first explore the full scope of water damage. When water damage occurs, it is best to act quickly and engage a professional water damage restoration company.
A water damage restoration company will arrive at your home or business premise and begin with a thorough assessment of your damage and an inspection of the affected areas. Experts will use specialized equipment, including infrared cameras and moisture meters, to determine the extent of the damage and identify its source.
Next, they will assess the situation and decide if the damage can be repaired. They also employ contractors to perform the necessary repair work if they can. If the damage is too significant and the affected area can’t be saved, the contractor will thoroughly inspect the rest of your home. Depending on the extent of your damage, a contractor may perform demolition in certain areas while performing repairs in others. If the water damage is unaffected by the rest of your home or premises, the contractor will dry out the affected area and restore it to its previous condition.
Moreover, if the damage is too widespread, the contractor will remove all the affected materials and replace them with new ones.
Best practices for avoiding future water damage
As you’ve seen, water damage can happen to anyone. You must take preventative measures to avoid water damage in the first place. Here are a few simple steps to prevent water damage.
- Clean your gutters
You may not realize it, but a clogged gutter can cause severe water damage. A clogged gutter will allow rainwater to pool on your roof, causing it to overflow. This excess water is then forced into your home through your roofing. If you have a clogged gutter, you have a higher risk of water damage.
- Install a sump pump
If you live in an area prone to flooding or are at risk of floods due to rising sea levels, you should install a sump pump in your basement. A sump pump is a small device connected to your basement floor. When water enters your basement, the sump pump activates and pumps the water out of your basement.
- Seal your windows
While this won’t protect your home from floods, it will protect it from rainwater that can damage your indoors. You can seal your windows using special caulking.
Water damage can have a devastating impact on your home or commercial property. It can damage your belongings, pose health and safety risks, and create additional costs when repairs are necessary. Water damage restoration services can help minimize the damage caused by water by cleaning and repairing the affected areas. Water can enter your property in many ways, and it is up to you to protect your belongings. By being vigilant and taking the necessary precautions, you can minimize the impact of water damage in your home.