There is a vast difference between a plumbing leak and a flood, and both bring unique challenges to the job. However, the objective is the same in every instance. The goal is to clean up any debris or trash, remove destroyed materials and dry the property so that it is safe to inhabit again. Efficient cleanup like this requires a variety of skills, most of which can only be learned from other qualified industry experts. Because of this, homeowners should only consider firms that are certified and experienced.
Rapid response is essential to saving as much as possible, the technicians will first need to survey the property to determine the extent of the problem. If the firm comes in soon enough, they may be able to save flooring, furniture, appliances and other expensive items that a homeowner will not want to replace. During inspection, the technicians will use a number of meters to detect the level of moisture in the home and various objects. These meters can take surface and below surface readings to detect moisture. Moisture readings will help the technicians determine what will be needed to dry the home and approximately how long it will take.
Once the technicians size up the situation, they will remove any pooled moisture. Floods and burst pipes can deposit several inches of water in the lower floor of the home in just hours, and it must be removed completely before thorough cleanup can begin. Technicians use commercial extractors to gather up pooled water and embedded moisture and keep a number of pumps on hand, with the most powerful extraction units being truck mounted.
Drying is the most important part of the process and will be the focus of the firm’s efforts. As soon as cellulose takes on an amount of moisture equal to 20 to 25 percent of its weight, it will be nearly impossible to save the material. Carpeting can lose about 50 percent of its integrity while wet if it sustains 24 hours of saturation, and this may force complete replacement of the flooring. Wood floors may warp and be unsalvageable even if moisture exposure is minimal.
The drying process is handled with a number of high-speed air movers and dehumidifiers, although additional pieces of equipment may be necessary in some circumstances. For example, if moisture is pooling in inaccessible areas like the ceiling, heat injectors may be needed to deliver hot air to confined spots.
Restoration firms that fix water damage are also qualified to eliminate any pathogens left behind by a flood or sewage backflow. Viruses like staph, molds and bacteria are all common in contaminated moisture, and they will cause serious health issues if not removed and handled properly. Professionals have access to powerful bactericides and fungicides, and technicians will apply them judiciously to destroy any lingering microbes.