As the risk of flooding continues to grow year-round, it is critical that water damage recovery teams are equipped with the tools and knowledge needed to deal with these events as efficiently and comprehensively as possible. Hear more about best practice in this helpful guide.
It’s no secret how devastating the consequences of a flood can be for individuals, families, businesses and others. The initial damage and destruction can undoubtedly be severe – but the water damage that occurs afterwards can significantly worsen the problems if not dealt with correctly.
Whether it is stagnant water in voids in the walls and foundations of a property that ultimately leads to further damage and expensive repairs, or the threat of mold and bacteria spreading and posing a health hazard to those who live or working there, the long-term consequences of a flood can be significant.
The threat of flooding is growing…
Before that, though, it’s useful to emphasize exactly why knowing how to deal with a flood effectively is critical right now—and will become even more important in the future.
Due to the effects of climate change, the likelihood of heavy rainfall throughout the year – especially in summer and winter – has grown significantly over the past few decades.
Understanding the impact of water damage over time
Speed is of the essence when dealing with the aftermath of water damage, and in the event of a flood it is even more critical. Even in the best of cases, water damage left untreated in a property can quickly run rampant, making it much more difficult to treat later and increasing costs significantly.
When dealing with the water damage left behind after a flood, there are some important problem areas that water damage restoration experts must consider:
- Removal of water and disinfection
- Control of air quality
- Control of the air humidity
To cope with these tasks, you need the right equipment – wet vacuum cleaners, chemicals, dehumidifiers, heaters, ventilation units, air cleaners, etc
1. Removal of water and disinfection
Before drying equipment is installed, the building must be disinfected to deal with any deposits and bacteria left behind by the heavily polluted flood water. Equipment such as water pumps, wet vacuum cleaners, containment systems, air filtration units, and ventilation units are all important elements in this initial containment and stabilization phase.
It is at this point that the contractors assess which materials can be restored to their pre-incident condition and which materials must be removed and disposed of in a safe manner. Avoid wasting time and energy trying to dry materials that must be removed and disposed of later in the process.
After assessing the affected area using moisture measurement and moisture mapping and ensuring that any areas of persistent water ingress are sealed off, the following three important steps must be taken to eliminate damage as effectively as possible.
2. Air quality control
The longer you let moisture penetrate furniture and building materials, the greater the risk of mold formation. When this happens, toxins, bacteria, and pathogens can quickly escape into the atmosphere, and after a few days or weeks, the area poses a significant health risk. In the event of a flood, the property is almost certainly highly contaminated by the flood water from today.
3. Controlling the humidity
Stabilizing the humidity in the flooded area is another important part of a successful remediation project. When assessing the damage, this is where a water damage technician must assess how the environment should be handled while the excess water from the flood is removed.
The stabilization of the environment depends on removing the moisture from the air and keeping the relative humidity (RL) below the threshold value where the humidity causes secondary damage to the structure and the interior – typically with the aim of always having a relative humidity below 60%. To achieve this (depending on the size of the flooded room) a combination of dehumidifiers, heating units, and ventilation systems help to establish this optimal environment. You might find some helpful advice for drying, sanitizing, and recovering water-damaged goods from the Perth flood repair professional you employ. The specialist handling your flood damage restoration Perth should also let you know about any local laws that can have an impact on the drying and repair procedure.