Water Damage at Home: When to Get Help

Water Damage at Home: When to Get Help

Discovering water damage in your home is a frustrating problem that can end up causing feelings of distress. If you find yourself in this situation, you are probably asking yourself a few key questions. How extensive is the water damage? Can I address the issue myself? Will I require assistance from an expert? How much will it cost to repair the damage? 

To ensure that your property stays safe, and the problem does not get any worse, it is important to understand how to identify problems early on. You also need to know what kinds of repairs will be necessary to get things back to normal. Beyond this, it is essential to understand when your best move is to seek assistance from trained professionals. With these points made, our team at ServiceMaster Fire & Water Damage Restoration wants to provide you with a helpful guide that focuses on the topic of water damage at home: when to get help.

Table of Contents

What to do When Dealing with Water Damage at Home

When your home is affected by a major leak or a flood, you are faced with some immediate practical considerations as well as considerations related to safety. The first things that you must do include:

  • If the damage is substantial, get children and pets out of the home.
  • When possible, collect all of your valuables that you can and remove them from the house.
  • If possible, try to contain the leak by addressing its cause.
  • Turn off your breaker box if it is located in a dry part of the house. If it is located anywhere near the water damage, do not attempt to access the breaker box. You should instead contact your electric provider and ask them to shut it off.
  • Wait for professional water damage professionals to arrive if the damage is the result of a backed-up sewer. If the water is grey or black, it represents a serious biohazard risk and must be dealt with by experts.

The Importance of Hiring Water Damage Experts

Once you have determined that you can safely enter your house again, it is vital to immediately begin the process of cleanup and water damage restoration. Acting quickly will minimize the spread of mold. It will also help to minimize the extent of serious structural damage that occurs. It is always your best move to contact a water damage restoration company within 24 to 48 hours.

You need to understand that the extent of water damage that is present in your home is often far worse than it might appear to an untrained eye. Water damage often hides under your floorboards and behind your walls. This fact means that it is best to seek out the expertise of our knowledgeable, experienced professionals here at ServiceMaster Fire & Water Damage Restoration. We will carefully assess the level of water damage and determine the amount of work needed to make your home safe and habitable again. There is a lot of work involved with water damage restoration. It can include using professional drying methods. It can also include the replacement of drywall, flooring, and insulation.

It is important to note that it is likely that some of your belongings that were damaged by water will not be salvageable. Our team will assess these items. Depending on the level of damage, you can count on a few days to a few weeks spent drying out your home and undertaking the necessary repairs.

Tips to Dry Out Your Property

Before you can begin any necessary structural repairs to your home, everything must be properly dried out. This can be particularly challenging if your electric is still off, or you live in a region that experiences high humidity. For minor cases of water damage, you can dry out your home on your own. Professional assistance is required for more extensive cases of water damage.

We have some tips to help you dry out impacted areas of your home quickly. Keep in mind the fact that it takes at least 2 days for your home to fully dry. In some cases, it can take several weeks of active drying to complete the process.

  • Begin the process quickly to minimize the spread of mold. As little as 24 hours is long enough for mold to appear after water damage occurs. Mold spores can easily spread to parts of the home not initially damaged.
  • Open up all of your windows and doors to promote good air circulation.
  • Remove any objects from your home that have been drenched so they do not continue leading onto the floors. This includes large items such as furniture.
  • Use floor fans, wet/dry vacs, air conditioners, and dehumidifiers to speed up the drying process and help with the prevention of mold growth.

Replace Damaged Materials - Drywall, Wood, and Porous Materials

How to Prevent Water Damage Around the Home

If your home has been seriously damaged by water because of a burst pipe, a flood, or any other type of source that led to its drywall, wooden structures, or other porous materials becoming submerged, it is generally best to have them replaced. Drywall can easily absorb water and it is difficult to dry out. Because of this, wet drywall is also a major risk factor for the growth of mold across your home. Wood that has been wet for a long period becomes susceptible to rot and collapse. Given these facts, it is usually better to replace these materials instead of investing time and money trying to repair them.

There are preventative measures that you can take to avoid water damage issues in your home. Follow these tips to greatly reduce the likelihood that water will invade your home and cause damage.

  • Keep your gutters clean
  • Regularly check your chimney for cracks, loose bricks, and loose mortar
  • Waterproof crawl spaces and basements   
  • Get a sump pump      
  • Fill any cracks around your home with caulk         
  • Get your roof professionally inspected

If you have any additional questions about water damage at home: when to get help, please reach out to ServiceMaster Fire & Water Damage Restoration. We are the water damage restoration professionals that homeowners across the greater Lexington, KY area have come to rely on to help them get their properties back to normal.