Home Reconstruction After Water Damage
Good quality home reconstruction after water damage is key to returning your life to normal. One of the most damaging and devastating things you can experience as a homeowner is water damage.
Whether it is due to flooding, burst pipes, sewer backups, roof damage due to severe storms or a leaky toilet when you are out of town – all can cause major water damage to your home.
Most homeowners are worried about getting their house back to normal and looking good. They think more about redecorating the space than restoring the damage. But it’s not just a matter of cleaning up the water, re-painting and replacing some carpet.
As expert in water damage and reconstruction, we understand the desire to restore to normal a quickly as possible. We also understand the importance of doing things properly to keep costs down and keep long-term effects, both as far as further damage, as well as health risks, to a minimum.
Further, your home is a major investment. Protecting that investment is important. Shortcutting on proper repair can negatively impact your homes value down the road, as well as lead to future problems. It is tempting to take money provided by insurance coverage to restore your home to it’s previous condition and try and stretch it to make additional upgrades and changes.
However, if taking the same money and making it cover more, you are most likely using lower quality materials and workmanship. So be careful. We are not telling you to avoid upgrade and changes.
We are just suggesting that these upgrades may be out-of-pocket expenses to you; probably less costly than starting from scratch because construction is already being done, but just beware anyone who tells you they can wrap several upgrades in for the same price.
Water Damage Plan of Action
It is important to have a plan of action and know what you should do if your house floods. In fact, taking swift action can significantly improve your ability to reduce the costs of repair.
There are 5 key steps to your plan:
Ensure your home and family is safe
Contact Five Star Restoration who can help with item 1, and manage Items 3,4 ,and 5
Contact your insurance company
Clean up, dry, and remove any water damage and mold damage
Reconstruct damaged areas, restoring your home
As mentioned above,your first priority should be to make sure that your home is safe.
The problem is that wood that has been submerged in water has likely absorbed a large amount of water. Rebuilding too quickly after a flood without insuring everything is dried out can cause continuing problems such as mold growth, insect infestations, and deterioration of the wood and wall coverings.
Replacing these materials is safer than allowing infectious organisms to saturate the air.
Home damage restoration can be as simple as vacuuming up water and drying out a room, or it can involve rebuilding entire sections of your home.
Of course, Five Star Restoration is expert at water damage repair and restoration, and we are glad to step in and manage your repair and restoration. However, if you wait to call us, here’s what you should do after you experience water damage to help reduce the amount of damage spread and make home damage restoration clean-up and repair easier.
Water Damage Plan of Action
If you are advised to leave your water damaged home due to repairs or safety reasons, remember to secure your home. It should be a high priority to secure your property to prevent any additional damage as well as people looking to take advantage of your recent series of unfortunate events.
Securing activities like putting boards over broken windows or tarping a leaking roof will help you keep the elements outside and reduce the risk of more damage accruing. Once again, remember to document everything you do and report your actions to any insurance or repair company helping you.
When dealling with a water damaged property, follow these guidelines to remain safe.
Safety first. The first step in any major home damage restoration is to remain safe. You may be forced to leave your home if the flooding is bad enough. Make sure it is also safe when you return to your home to begin dealing with the aftermath.
Turn off water and electricity. Once you do return home, it’s always a good idea to turn off all water and electrical sources within the home. Even if you discover that the power isn’t operational, head to your fuse box and turn off the main and all individual fuses. In the event you suspect severe damage to water, gas, electric, and sewer lines, immediately contact your utility company.
Wear protection. Be sure to wear sturdy shoes, rubber gloves, and eye protection when you re-enter your home.
Watch for animals. Be watchful for fire ants, snakes, or other animals.
Be aware of mold. If mold is present, wear a respirator that can filter spores.
Check for the following: Visible structural damage, warping in foundation, loosened or cracked foundation elements, or holes in the foundation.
Be mindful of your food. Be sure to throw out any food or drinks that have touched floodwater. Until your local water company, utility, or public health department declares your water source safe, purify your water, not only for drinking and cooking but also for washing any part of the body or dishes.
If Insured, Contact Your Insurance Company
Your first call should be to your insurance company. You need to know exactly what you’re covered for. Once you are in touch with your insurance representative, the first thing you need to do is disclose the state of your home.
If you have already called Five Star Restoration, we are happy to interface with your insurance company for you, and take over from here. We have experience in understanding the information your insurance company needs, and the types of coverage offered. We can help you maximize your covered loss benefits.
Make sure you take diligent notes regarding the conversation and follow our insurance representatives direction about whether to wait for an adjuster to inspect the property before making repairs. You will most likely find new damage that will require multiple conversations, so be sure to document everything.
The insurance company will send an adjuster to look at and assess the damage and determine if it is a covered loss. Document the value of each and every item you can think of and take as many photos as possible before, during, and after cleanup. This will help the adjuster when he or she is able to come assess the damage.
Take pictures of all water-damaged property. Whether you have insurance or not, before you remove anything that has been damaged by water, fully document the damage by taking photos or videos. Digital photographs are best as they are easily transferred and can be quickly sent to insurance agents or repair professionals.
Remember, the last thing you want to do (and it can be tough considering you want to get out soaked furniture to fight mold growth) is to start removing water or making repairs before you document the damage. If you have insurance or are hiring a professional service, this could potentially cause issues with your coverage or cause further issues with the repair process.
Follow these instructions to help your insurance process runs smoothly.
Be quick. Begin cleanup, salvage, and drying as soon as possible. Do not wait for the adjuster. Take photos for use as an inventory.
Clean up. Clean house so the adjuster can see the damage.
Don’t throw things away. Keep damaged materials for proof of loss.
Leave your phone number. Leave a phone number where you can be reached when the adjuster arrives.
Assess the property. The adjuster will assess damages to the house. The owner should sign a proof of loss statement. Additional damage can be added when found.
Apply for assistance (when possible). If the flood has been declared a federal disaster by the President, apply for assistance.
Remove humidity. When power is available, continuously use air conditioning (or heat in winter) plus a dehumidifier, if possible, to remove humidity.
Circulate the air. In an un-air-conditioned home, open windows and use fans to circulate air. Turn on electric lights in closets, and leave doors open to facilitate drying.
Hire a Water Damage Restoration Clean Up Company
Mold can begin developing after the first 24 hours of a water saturation, and once it has started growing it can be difficult to remove. The quicker you remove items from water and begin drying them, the less likely they are to be lost to mold, but it’s always best to err on the side of caution and have a professional assess the situation.
Water damage creates the perfect environment for mold and poor indoor air quality, causing hay fever-type symptoms, such as sneezing, runny nose, red eyes, and skin rashes. If your home damage restoration isn’t done properly the contamination from bacteria or mold caused by water damage can affect your family’s health, not to mention your home’s structure.
Determine what is salvageable and throw away anything that is too damaged or no longer safe to use. Be aware that you may need to remove flooring, drywall, and insulation to prevent mold and mildew from spreading in your home. Furniture may also need to be dried out, cleaned or thrown away depending on the level of water damage.
Calling Five Star Restoration, a professional experienced and certified water damage restoration and mold removal company to help is the best thing you can do. It’s important to act quickly because this will help stop further saturation, damage, and mold spores from growing.
When it comes to mold and your home, you will want the peace of mind that comes with hiring a home damage restoration professional. In cases where the mold growth may have already started, hiring a professional is the best way to go. If you need pros to help get your home back to normal, water damage restoration services are where you should start.
Reconstruction After Water Damage - Find a Contractor
The aftermath of water damage in your home from flooding, the repair and rstoratioon, can typically take the longest amount of time. Flooring often needs to be replaced, walls need to be restored, broken possessions are often in need of repair, etc.
Five Star is a licensed provider or reconstruction contracting services. With Five Star, experts in water removal and water damage clean-up, as well as reconstruction repair to return your home to normal, the process is seamless and you have only one company to deal with. This means less stress, lower risk of finger pointing, and probably a faster return to normal.
Here’s a list of items to be checked off during an extensive water damage repair process.
Note: To prevent further long term damage, permanent repairs should be done only after the building is thoroughly dry, which may be weeks after the initial damage.
Check the electrical. For safety’s sake, you must have your electrical checked by a licensed electrical contractor before turning the power back on.
Check the heating and cooling. Your heating and cooling system could have been damaged by floodwaters, so have it checked by an HVAC specialist, especially if you suspect that water got into heat registers and/or ducts.
Replace all damaged flooring. All damaged flooring (including laminate, hardwood, carpeting, and tiling) should be ripped out and replaced, as well as the subfloor. Laminate and hardwood floors will absorb water, swell and warp, including their subfloor.
All water-damaged carpeting must be removed along with the underpad, especially if there is any natural fiber in it. If the carpet is made of synthetic material it can’t serve as a food source for mold, but the subfloor is going to be wood or OSB (oriented strand board, which is a composite wood product) and it’s likely that it will be soaked through.
Even if you have tile, which doesn’t absorb water, the wood substrate will never completely dry out with tile over the top of it. Any wet wood or OSB will lead to mold. Get rid of it.
Clean, repair, or replace walls. Most walls are made of wood studs and drywall. Both will grow mold if there's moisture. Your contractor will need to open up your walls so the studs can dry out. As a bare minimum your contractor should remove at least 1 foot of drywall above the waterline, all the way down to the floor—the more the better. If they don’t, you will get mold and mildew.
Remove insulation. Saturated batt insulation isn’t effective because it will compress and the air space gets full of water. Plus, the insulation will never completely dry out, which will keep moisture in your walls forever. That can lead to poor air quality, mold and mildew, and further damage to your home’s structure from rot.
After your contractor has removed all the drywall and insulation, leave it open so that the wall cavity can dry out completely.
Tear out the basement if there is one. Depending on the amount of damage, your best bet might be to tear out the entire basement, right down to the foundation walls and start over. That way it can be rebuilt the right way using mold-resistant drywall and insulation products that also help create a proper thermal break.
At Five Star Restoration, our in-house contractors are the perfect combination of skilled contractors plus water damage repair experts, perfect to return your property to it’s pre-damage condition. We take the hassle out of an already stressful situation by having the necessary personal easily accessible to you under one roof.
Call Us Today for Help with Your Home Reconstruction After Water Damage
Water damage at any level can be stressful for you and your family. That’s why the professionals at Five Star Restoration are here to help you every step of the way.
Five Star specializes in water damage restoration and flood or natural disaster repairs. With our background in remodeling and renovation, we can get you repaired and restored and help you safely enjoy your home once again.
Call us today at (951) 368-2227.
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