Dealing with Water Damage after a Flood

Floods can be caused by a countless number of causes from a broken pipe to natural disasters. Some of these can be foreseen and prevented while others occasionally happen with no warning and no way to stop them. No matter what the cause of your flooding issue might be, the aftermath needs to be handled in the same way. Most homeowners are going to want to call a Markham plumber and other professional help, but if you’re a proficient do-it-yourselfer, there are some basic steps you need to follow to get your home back to normal.

Step 1: Check for Danger

Whether you’re doing the work yourself or hiring a professional; this is the most vital part for any home owner experiencing flood damage. Anyone who passed second grade science class can tell you that water is a very good conductor of electricity. What many people forget however as they rush into their flooded room to survey the damage is that the walls, ceiling and in many cases the floors of their home are filled with the electrical wires which power their home. This means that the very first thing you should do is go to your breaker or fuse box and turn off the power to the affected area of the home.

Step 2: Identify the Source

Once you have made sure the area is safe, the next step will be to identify the source of the leak and the sort of water which is now filling your home. In general, a Markham plumber will tell you that there are three categories of water which can flood your home.

Step 3: Cleanup and Damage Prevention

As we said before, if you’re looking at a Category III flood problem, you need to call an expert immediately. We still recommend calling an expert no matter what sort of flood you have, but with a minor Category I or Category II flood, you may be able to take care of things yourself. First you need to get any furniture out of the room. Wooden furniture will continue to wick water up into itself and become further damaged as long as it’s exposed to the wet area. Additionally, this will give you room to work while cleaning up the rest of the area.

Baseboards, wainscoting and other wall coverings will also continue to wick water up from the floor and cause damage to the walls. As long as these remain in place and remain damp they will provide ideal places for mold to begin to grow. If you find any mold while removing these items, stop what you’re doing and call a professional immediately. Certain strains of mold can be extremely dangerous especially to children, the elderly or anyone with respiratory problems.

Once the room is empty and the walls are stripped to the drywall, you can begin to attempt to dry the floors. This process involves large floor fans and dehumidifiers, items which most homeowners do not own but may be available from an equipment rental company.

Follow these steps and you may be able to salvage the room and its contents without too much damage. However, calling a professional may save you a significant amount of time and money as the longer it takes you to get things dry the more permanent damage there may be.